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«Мальчик идёт под мостом» - «он проходит под лестницей». Why instrumental is used since movement is implied? I thought that instumental is used when the subject of the sentence does not change its position (like the prepositional case with «в» or «на»). Does «он проходит под лестницу» have different meaning?

The question arose when I watched a video about prepositions of direction. In the video there where the above examples which were translated as "the boy is walking under the bridge" and "he walks under the ladder". In my two grammar books it is written that when "под" denotes movement to a position underneath something, accusative is used "он сели под дерево - they sat down under the tree". On the contrary, instrumental is used when location is implied "стоять под мостом - to stand under the bridge". Furthermore in the same article of this book,in another example with "под+instrumental" movement is denoted "плавать под водой - to swim under water". Is there a difference of meaning between "под+instrumental" and "под+accusative" when movent is implied in the phrase? Is there a possibility that accusative denotes movement until the place and staying there and instumental passing through under the place and walking away afterwards?

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Is there a possibility that accusative denotes movement until the place and staying there and instumental passing through under the place and walking away afterwards?

No.

Instrumental is used not specifically because of movement, but because Instrumental case is one of cases to govern preposition под.

When под means current location, then it's Instrumental (he's already under the bridge or a staircase).
When it means direction, then it's Accusative.

Does «он проходит под лестницу» have different meaning?

Yes.

Considering the above said «он проходит под лестницу» means he moves towards under the staircase, in order to find himself thereunder. Likewise

Мальчик идёт под мост Acc

Another illustration of the difference

Плавать/плыть под водой Inst
BUT
Нырять/спускаться под воду Acc

Such duality also applies to preposition за

Sadly you can't say идти над / перед / рядом с мост, these only govern Instrumental and so denote an established location and not a movement thereto.

Leaving from under something is signified with the preposition из-под but it governs Genitive case. Likewise the prepositions от (from) and из (from inside/from within/out of).

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  • thank you for your answer. I tried to better explain my question so I added a new paragraph.
    – Livic
    Sep 19 '18 at 12:36
  • @Livic sure.... Sep 19 '18 at 12:57

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