“…А ты кто? (1)

– А я кабан-клыкан. Пустите и меня! (2) Вот беда, всем в рукавичку охота! (3)

– Тебе ведь и не влезть! (4)

– Как-нибудь влезу, пустите!” (5)

– Ну что ж с тобой поделаешь, лезь! (6)"

Here’s my translation thus far:

… And who are you? (1) – And I am the tusked boar. Let me in! (2) Here’s the trouble: that was everyone’s wish in the glove! (3) – Why don’t you come in! / Don’t come in, you see! (4) – I’ve come anyhow, let me in! (5) – Well what are you doing with yourself, come! (6)

I'm confused about (4) and (5) mainly: (4): Unsure whether охота behaves as a noun or predicate here (c.f. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D0%BE%D1%85%D0%BE%D1%82%D0%B0). (5): I would have thought that the не means “don’t”. After all, 5-6 animals in a glove is crowded, but the story seems to be about making room for all the animals, so unsure whether its instead partial negative, i.e. the “why not” construction, or even emphasized affirmation, as per https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D0%BD%D0%B5#Russian

  • 3
    Yeah, the folk fairy tales are always like that – full of elliptical sentences, folklore-specific vocabulary, archaisms, idioms, and metaphors, surely not the best choice for a beginner-level reader.
    – Yellow Sky
    May 19, 2020 at 1:15

1 Answer 1


Correct translation would be

… And who are you? (1) – And I am the tusked boar. Let me in! (2) Here’s the trouble: everyone wants to get into the glove! (3) – But you won't fit in / you won't be able to get inside (4) – I’ll fit somehow, let me in! (5) – Well what can I say, come in! (6)

“охота” here looks closer to predicative. Personally I'd say it has a verbish role here. I feel that Wiktionary article is incomplete.

“не” is indeed a negating particle, and it is often translated as “don't”. Example: “не входить” — “don't enter”. But in this case it's part of “тебе и не __ть” which means “you couldn't do something even if you're allowed/ even if you try”. Regarding the Wiktionary article, that would be the 4th meaning probably.

And one thing that you missed — “что ж с тобой поделаешь”. First, about literal translation. It's not “what are you doing with yourself”, but “what can one do with you”. It's an impersonal sentence (I'm not 100% sure if it's correct term). Second, about actual translation. “Что ж [с тобой/с этим] поделаешь” (note that part in square brackets is optional) is an idiom and means something between “there's nothing I can do about this” and “what can I say”. First is closer by meaning, while second is closer by usage.

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