Disclaimer: I'm a true beginner with the Russian language.

I struggle translating a riddle:

I'm between the King and the Queen - where am I?

The ‘King’ and the ‘Queen’ being playing card, it seems that ‘Queen’ would be translated дама in this context, but should ‘King’ stay король ?

Also, what's most correct:

Я между королем и дамой - Где я ?


Я между король и дама - Где я ?


1 Answer 1


In playing cards, ‘Queen’ is дама and ‘King’ is король. The first variant of the translation is absolutely correct,

Я между королем и дамой - Где я ?

Also, королем can be spelled as королём which is even more correct. Whenever a Russian word has the letter ё, one is free to spell it as e, still the pronunciation remains that of ё, that is, [jo] or [o] with the previous consonant palatalized, the latter being the case with королём/королем [kərɐˈlʲom].

In the second variant of translation the cases are wrong, both nouns after между must be in the Instrumental case, not in the Nominative.

  • @Heagon - Really? Who on earth uses Genitive after между? Who will say *между дома и сарая or *между меня и тебя? If such usage really still exists somewhere, it is definitely not recommended for beginner level learners, it is not worth noting.
    – Yellow Sky
    Commented Dec 18, 2020 at 9:58
  • @Heagon There is one more clarification. The nouns after между can be in genitive case only for между nessery X or между nessery X and nessery Y. It can't be in genitive case for между one X and one Y. Между двух столбов. Между двумя столбами. Между столбом и стеной. But we can't say: "Между столба и стены. Между дамы и короля"
    – Elena
    Commented Dec 18, 2020 at 10:23
  • @Heagon - I've edited the question to exclude mentioning the Genitive case which is marked as “obsolete” already in the 1930s Ushakov's dictionary.
    – Yellow Sky
    Commented Dec 18, 2020 at 10:36

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.