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Thread: Prefixed verbs of motion

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    Prefixed verbs of motion

    In my book "Russian with Exercises" by S. Khavronina, I have part of an example sentence that reads:

    После звонка мы входим в зрительный зал и садимься на свои места. Когда фильм кончается, мы выходим из кинотеатра и идём в кафе. Tам мы ужинаем. После ужина мы идём домой.

    I can make sense of the first several verbs (it's a fill in the blank exercise where you have to add the appropriate verb of motion in the present tense). However, I can't figure out why you use идём in the cases in bold as opposed to a form of ходить. I've really just begun to learn about verbs of motion and so am not totally solid on them yet, but I just wanted a short explanation of why идти is used instead of ходить. Thanks.

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    Ходить is a movement without any concrete direction.
    Идти is a movement with a very concrete direction.

    Ходить по улице means to walk around the street (with no direction, just here and there).
    Идти по улице means to walk along the street.

    P.S. That's if you're talking about something happening in this very moment. If you you're talking about something that happens usually, you can use "ходить" with a concrete direction:
    Каждые выходные я хожу в кино (Every weekend I go to the cinema).
    In this case "хожу" means that the action is many times, from time to time repeated.
    In Russian, all nationalities and their corresponding languages start with a lower-case letter.

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    Alright - that clears it up a bit. All the other ones were pretty clear to me (i.e, входить and not войти because the latter is perfective). If I were going to say "Мы... ходим в кафе... после ужина, мы ходим домой," would that totally transform the meaning of the sentence? Because that was what I put before I looked into the key and saw that it was totally incorrect - to put ходим in order to describe the habitual action of going to the cafe and then going home.

    (this is so difficult, I feel like ripping all my hair out.)

    I guess it's just something I'll have to get used to and process on a case-by-case basis.

    -NM

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    Russian verbs of motion are split into two categories, Unidirectional and Multidirectional

    Unidirectional (идти, ехать, лететь) are used for motion at one time/at a specific time or motion to a specific place.
    Multidirectional (ходить, ездить, летать) are used for habitual motion, general movement or the ability of movement.

    Uni:
    Я еду в кинотеатр.
    Я сейчас еду в кинотеатр.

    Multi:
    Я обычно езжу в кинотеатр.
    Я хожу по улице.
    Ребенок ходит (The baby walks)
    Quote Originally Posted by TATY
    Your mum played her balalaika for me all last night.
    АК АК, АК47

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    Quote Originally Posted by nebomoreoblaka
    If I were going to say "Мы... ходим в кафе... после ужина, мы ходим домой," would that totally transform the meaning of the sentence?
    Yes, that would sound totally wrong here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Автобус
    Ребенок ходил, когда ему был_ один год.
    A bit strange sentence, by the way. It sounds like he could walk when he was 1 y.o., but later/now he could not.
    "Ребенок пошёл (or стал ходить), когда ему исполнился год" would be okay.
    In Russian, all nationalities and their corresponding languages start with a lower-case letter.

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    Quote Originally Posted by nebomoreoblaka
    If I were going to say "Мы... ходим в кафе...
    In your context it would mean that you go to a cafe, return to the cinema, go to another cafe and so on (this is a simplistic explanation, it is even worse than that), which is nonsense.
    What you could, in principle, say is "Мы... ходим по кафе...", which would mean that from cinema you go to one cafe, then directly to another and so on.

    (this is so difficult, I feel like ripping all my hair out.)
    Keep your hair on. Even advanced learners of Russian keep making mistakes with those verbs (and with perfective/imperfective ones). Follow my example: I abandoned all hope of mastering English articles and I'm perfectly happy.

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    Re: Prefixed verbs of motion

    AMEN to that, bro. I have been more or less working with Russian longer than anyone here (first Russian class was in high school, 195, and I still have problems with motion verbs.

    I would simplify the categories, however, into a binary opposition:
    unidirectional verbs and
    all others. (i.e., verbs that are not specifically unidirectional).

    If you're talking about a verb that means moving in one direction only one time, then use the идти/ехать/лететь group, otherwise ходить/ездить/летать

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