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Thread: verb tense stuff...yay

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    verb tense stuff...yay

    Is there a Russian equivalent to the English Past Continuous tense? As in.."I was reading"?

    How does the difference between Я читал and Я прочитал translate?

    Also, how is English Present Perfect translated into Russian? "I have seen many cities" as differing from "I saw many cities"?

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    Завсегдатай kalinka_vinnie's Avatar
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    Я читал - I was reading (past continous)
    Я прочитал - I read (completed action)

    I have seen many cities - Я видел много городов
    I saw many cities - Я увидел много городов

    Perfective and Imperfective pairs of Russian verbs does it all!
    Hei, rett norsken min og du er død.
    I am a notourriouse misspeller. Be easy on me.
    Пожалуйста! Исправляйте мои глупые ошибки (но оставьте умные)!
    Yo hablo español mejor que tú.
    Trusnse kal'rt eturule sikay!!! ))

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    Alright, thanks. I have another question. In English, when we use certain verbs in the Simple Present tense, (I sing), the action isn't actually happening at the time of the statement (in the present). Its meaning includes all of - I can sing, I have sung, I sometimes/often sing and I will sing.

    I figure that "Я часто пою" is probably the closest I'll get, but it just seems kind of narrow. Is there a way in Russian that you can get away with being very ambiguous about the frequency of the habitual act, like with English?

    I don't think the qualifier of "sometimes" would work either, because it conveys that it is something that you do, but that isn't necessarily a function of your person.

    I'll be perfectly content if it turns out that it is untranslatable, I'm just curious is all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kalinka_vinnie
    I have seen many cities - Я видел много городов
    You could also say "Я повидал много городов", but I suppose it would change the meaning slightly. It might even have a slightly archaic or poetic ring to it (sort of "I have seen many a city")
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoduck
    Alright, thanks. I have another question. In English, when we use certain verbs in the Simple Present tense, (I sing), the action isn't actually happening at the time of the statement (in the present). Its meaning includes all of - I can sing, I have sung, I sometimes/often sing and I will sing.
    Я играю в шахматы means I can play chess, I have played chess, I sometimes/often play chess and I will play chess. The same with "я пою".
    Show yourself - destroy our fears - release your mask

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    Я поигрываю в шахматы.

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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    Goodluck, it's a complex question but I think there's a website at Bucknell that can help you get the difference between imperfective and perfective verbs. It's like an online Russian course. If you can't find it, check back here and I'll look it up.

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