To Own

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RhoKappa

Senior Member
Standard American English
I am having trouble translating a very simple verb: to own. My dictionary translates the verb to either иметь or владеть, but the examples provided do not seem to correctly translate what I am trying to say. By owning, I mean having possession.

"Who owns that car?" Could this be translated to Кто владеет ету машину? Or is Кто имеет эту машину more correct? My Russian verb book states that владеть refers more to mastery. For example, я не владею русском языком roughly translates to the notion that I do not know the Russian language. The verb иметь translates in more generic terms of having something, such as я имею основания ей верить, which in English translates to I have reason not to trust her.

Which verb would be more correct to state ownership of something. For example, what is the correct verb for the following examples:

1. Who owns that car?
2. Who owns this restaurant?
3. Who owns that hotel?

What would be the correct verb in this sense of the verb to own?
 
  • Saluton

    Banned
    Russian
    It would be the most natural just to use the pronoun чей/чья in your examples.

    1. Чья это машина?
    2. Чей это ресторан?
    3. Чья это гостиница?
     

    WordOrder

    Senior Member
    Russian
    быть владельцем — to be an owner
    владеть — to own

    Я владелец нескольких отелей на Лазурном Берегу — I'm an owner of several hotels in Côte d'Azur.

    Моя жена владеет небольшим участком земли в Техасе — My wife owns a small parcel of land in Texas.

    Элтон Джон является владельцем коллекции спортивных автомобилий — Elton John is an owner of a sports car collection.

    Кто владелец сети отелей Хилтон? — Who's an owner of Hilton hotels network?

    Кто владеет этим ранчо? — Who owns that ranch?

    Кто владелец этого прекрасного автомобиля? — Who's an owner of that beautiful car?
     

    Awwal12

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Which verb would be more correct to state ownership of something. For example, what is the correct verb for the following examples:

    1. Who owns that car?
    2. Who owns this restaurant?
    3. Who owns that hotel?
    What is the context? Is the text low formal (colloquial / artistic), more formal (official), the most formal (juridical)? The answer strongly depends, because surely you can describe the idea of ownership in a lot of ways, but it is at least formality-sensitive. In case of low formality, you aren't expected to use any verbs at all, for instance.
     

    Sobakus

    Senior Member
    Strange to see nobody mentioned it, but the basic way of expressing posession in Russian is у+subject in Genitive+есть, i.e. у него есть машина = there's a car at him literally. If the thing being owned is definite, we usually use posessive pronouns/adjectives. Это его/Васина машина = this is his/Vasya's car.
     

    RhoKappa

    Senior Member
    Standard American English
    How about the Russian word хозяин/хозяинка/хозяева? That is one of my dictionary translations of the word owner. I suspect, however, that to say я хозяин... every time would be awkward.
     

    RhoKappa

    Senior Member
    Standard American English
    Strange to see nobody mentioned it, but the basic way of expressing posession in Russian is у+subject in Genitive+есть, i.e. у него есть машина = there's a car at him literally. If the thing being owned is definite, we usually use posessive pronouns/adjectives. Это его/Васина машина = this is his/Vasya's car.
    Could this be understood as saying that you simply have the car, regardless if you own it or not? For example, if a Russian oligarch loaned me his sports car for one month I can go about telling people У меня есть Ламборгини, yet the car is not really mine. The car is in my possession, it sits in my garage, and I can drive it all I want--however, it is not mine.

    In English, there is a distinct difference when saying you have something versus you own something. Ownership implies having legal title to something, that what you have in your possession is absolutely yours without any dispute.

    On a side note, there is an even finer distinction. One can have a nice home, yet he is in debt with a bank who loaned him a mortgage on the property. The bank owns title to the house, even though the debtor lives in it. Quite often, people say, "I own that house," but some people snicker in response, "Do you own it, or does the bank own it?" The same applies to cars loans, where you can ask people, "That's a nice car you own, but do you own it, or does the bank own it." The correct verb to describe the situation is hypothecate, which means legal title is held by a financial institution until all debt is paid, upon which title is finally transferred to the owner. However, very few people use this word to describe their state of ownership of a given piece of property. Is there an expression or specific word to describe this situation in Russian as well?

    Returning to the original post, I wonder if there is a simpler way to express ownership of property other than merely у меня есть. Is there a simple way to distinct owning a car than to say you merely have it?
     

    jazyk

    Senior Member
    Brazílie, portugalština
    Моя жена владеет небольшим участком земли в Техасе — My wife owns a small parcel of land in Texas.
    Интересно, что русские произносят название этого штата по-испански.
     

    morzh

    Banned
    USA
    Russian
    Интересно, что русские произносят название этого штата по-испански.
    A few states sound a bit different in Russian.
    Texas is one of them.
    This may also have something to do with the Russian letter "X" being "h" sound ("kh") in Russan, not "ks".

    Would Моя жена - владелица... be more correct?
    No, either one's good.
     

    Wertis

    Banned
    Russian
    I am having trouble translating a very simple verb: to own. My dictionary translates the verb to either иметь or владеть, but the examples provided do not seem to correctly translate what I am trying to say. By owning, I mean having possession.

    "Who owns that car?" Could this be translated to Кто владеет ету машину? Or is Кто имеет эту машину more correct? My Russian verb book states that владеть refers more to mastery. For example, я не владею русском языком roughly translates to the notion that I do not know the Russian language. The verb иметь translates in more generic terms of having something, such as я имею основания ей верить, which in English translates to I have reason not to trust her.

    Which verb would be more correct to state ownership of something. For example, what is the correct verb for the following examples:

    1. Who owns that car?
    2. Who owns this restaurant?
    3. Who owns that hotel?

    What would be the correct verb in this sense of the verb to own?
    1. Who owns that car? - Кто владеет этой машиной? Кому принадлежит эта машина? Чья это машина?

    2. Who owns this restaurant? - Кто владеет этим рестораном? Кому принадлежит этот ресторан? Чей это ресторан?

    3. Who owns that hotel? Кто владеет этим отелем? Кому принадлежит этот отель? Чей это отель?

    Three options are possible in each question. I've arranged them from the most to the least formal translation.
     

    Wertis

    Banned
    Russian
    Could this be understood as saying that you simply have the car, regardless if you own it or not? For example, if a Russian oligarch loaned me his sports car for one month I can go about telling people У меня есть Ламборгини, yet the car is not really mine. The car is in my possession, it sits in my garage, and I can drive it all I want--however, it is not mine.
    If I had bought my own car and used it now I would say "У меня есть машина". However if it was someone's present, I'd say "У меня временно есть машина" or "Мне одолжили машину". "Временно" means "temporarily". Actually it's also possible to say "У меня есть машина" even if it doesn't belong to you, but then you might be misunderstood because other people will think the car is yours and may ask you to take them somewhere by car while you promised the owner that you would use it only to get to work and back home and nowhere else. So in this case it's much better to say that you're using it only te,porarily and are will return it when the owner asks you about it.

    On a side note, there is an even finer distinction. One can have a nice home, yet he is in debt with a bank who loaned him a mortgage on the property. The bank owns title to the house, even though the debtor lives in it. Quite often, people say, "I own that house," but some people snicker in response, "Do you own it, or does the bank own it?" The same applies to cars loans, where you can ask people, "That's a nice car you own, but do you own it, or does the bank own it." The correct verb to describe the situation is hypothecate, which means legal title is held by a financial institution until all debt is paid, upon which title is finally transferred to the owner. However, very few people use this word to describe their state of ownership of a given piece of property. Is there an expression or specific word to describe this situation in Russian as well?
    I think I've recognized what you're talking about but since I don't have a car I can't say anything in response to your question. But I sometimes hear things like these from my friends and relatives.



    Returning to the original post, I wonder if there is a simpler way to express ownership of property other than merely у меня есть?
    I own a car - У меня есть машина / Это моя машина / Эта машина моя

    These are simplest.

    Is there a simple way to distinct owning a car than to say you merely have it?
    I own a car - see above
    I have a car - У меня есть машина (as I've said above it's better to add that the car doesn't belong to you, but you've borrowed it from someone)
     

    Natalisha

    Senior Member
    Russian
    I own a car - У меня есть машина / Это моя машина / Эта машина моя
    Mmm, I'm not sure I agree with that, Wertis.
    The connotation is different.

    Это моя машина. (with the stress on the first word and the last one) - This is my car.

    Эта машина моя. - This car is mine.

    "I own a car" and "I own the/that/this car" can't be translated the same way.
     

    Sobakus

    Senior Member
    Could this be understood as saying that you simply have the car, regardless if you own it or not? For example, if a Russian oligarch loaned me his sports car for one month I can go about telling people У меня есть Ламборгини, yet the car is not really mine. The car is in my possession, it sits in my garage, and I can drive it all I want--however, it is not mine.
    Yes it can, but the default meaning is that of owning, although not always does a person actually *own* the thing, for example not many people in Russia actually own their flats. They're considered government property.

    In English, there is a distinct difference when saying you have something versus you own something. Ownership implies having legal title to something, that what you have in your possession is absolutely yours without any dispute.
    ...and so on...
    У меня есть doesn't stress posession. There are more legal terms for that like владеть, обладать чем-то/принадлежать кому-то, but they sound a bit legal as well :) Although not quite as legal as, err, hypothecate(the russian word for it is закладывать), I imagine.

    Моя жена владелец...
    No, this sounds very awkward.
     
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    Wertis

    Banned
    Russian
    Моя жена владелец...
    Technically, this word phrase is absolutely correct. In all legal documents we have to use the male gender even if a person is a woman or a girl. I remeber when I was studying at the university I was responsible for filling in certain forms which were needed by the dean's office to assign the scholarship to all students of our group. There I had to write a person's full name and their status. I always used male gender even for girls because it was required to do so:

    Иванова - студент очной бюджетной формы обучения
    Петров - студент очной бюджетной формы обучения

    In your example we can, of course, say both:

    Моя жена - владелеца... :tick:
    Моя жена - владелец... :tick:

    I would say the first sentence sounds better to most people's ear, but the second sentence is "more correct" because it's always used in documents, formal speech, and wills. In English, by the way, the male gender is also used to make an expression look and/or sound more formal and clear:

    Each person must open his bag at the customs control if asked :tick:
     

    Wertis

    Banned
    Russian
    Mmm, I'm not sure I agree with that, Wertis.
    The connotation is different.

    Это моя машина. (with the stress on the first word and the last one) - This is my car.

    Эта машина моя. - This car is mine.

    "I own a car" and "I own the/that/this car" can't be translated the same way.
    I think you're right. I was a bit inattentive when I was giving comments on the question. I agree with what you have written above.

    Interesting but you can really say "I own a car" and "I own the car" and they'll have the same translation. Nonetheless I wouldn't use option #2 ass a separate sentence. Instead of saying "the" I would specify whose car I'm talking about by "this" or "that" to make it even more clearer. Of course saying so you either need to show which car you're talking about ot to help your interlocutor remember the last time you have mentioned the car you're talking about now. Otherwise "this" or "that" won't be clear.
     

    morzh

    Banned
    USA
    Russian
    Technically, this word phrase is absolutely correct. In all legal documents we have to use the male gender even if a person is a woman or a girl. I remeber when I was studying at the university I was responsible for filling in certain forms which were needed by the dean's office to assign the scholarship to all students of our group. There I had to write a person's full name and their status. I always used male gender even for girls because it was required to do so:

    Иванова - студент очной бюджетной формы обучения
    Петров - студент очной бюджетной формы обучения

    In your example we can, of course, say both:

    Моя жена - владелеица... :tick:
    Моя жена - владелец... :tick:

    I would say the first sentence sounds better to most people's ear, but the second sentence is "more correct" because it's always used in documents, formal speech, and wills. In English, by the way, the male gender is also used to make an expression look and/or sound more formal and clear:

    Each person must open his bag at the customs control if asked :tick:
    I know that you know, but non-Russian folks may not know the spelling.
     

    RhoKappa

    Senior Member
    Standard American English
    It has been a long time since I last used this thread, but I just witnessed an exchange at a restaurant. A lady approached a man at a restaurant. The man was obnoxious and noisy, and the lady asked him to be quiet and respectful to the staff and other customers. He asked, "Вы кто?" and she answered, "Хозяиком" and his demeanor changed immediately. So I guess here in this case simply answering хозяиком would be more conversationally correct compared to владелец? Maybe владелец is more of a formal term for owner?
     

    Awwal12

    Senior Member
    Russian
    It was "хозя́йка" [xɐzʲæɪ̯kə], a feminine counterpart of "хозя́ин", most definitely.
    "Owner" is one of its meaning indeed; unlike "владе́лец"/"владе́лица", it isn't formal.
     

    RhoKappa

    Senior Member
    Standard American English
    Oops, sorry about that. I mis-heard because I understand that when you refer to working, you use the instrumental form for Кем вы работаете? I assumed that because she works there as the owner, that must also be instrumental.
     

    Awwal12

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Oops, sorry about that. I mis-heard because I understand that when you refer to working, you use the instrumental form for Кем вы работаете?
    As long as there is the verb "работаете", yes. It's also true with the copula verb "быть" in the present and in the future tense (in the same meaning: "я был (i.e. работал) врачом", "я буду космонавтом"). But it doesn't work with the zero copula in the present tense. Actually the question "вы кто (есть)?" already contains the grammar of the reply. :)
     
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