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Contents
Articles
Russian 1
Russian/Contents 1
Russian/Alphabet 3
Russian/Typing 5
Russian/Lesson 1 9
Russian/Lesson 2 15
Russian/Lesson 3 17
Russian/Lesson 4 30
Russian/Lesson 5 36
Russian/Numbers 39
Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension 42
Russian/Grammar/Adjectives 45
Russian/Grammar/Introduction 47
Russian/Grammar/Articles 48
Russian/Grammar/Gender 48
Russian/Grammar/Pronouns 49
Russian/Grammar/Cases 50
Russian/Grammar/Nominative 52
Russian/Grammar/Genitive case 56
Russian/Grammar/Dative case 58
Russian/Grammar/Accusative case 59
Russian/Grammar/Instrumental case 60
Russian/Grammar/Prepositional case 60
Russian/Grammar/Noun cases 63
Russian/Grammar/Past tense 65
Russian/Grammar/Verbs 66
Russian/Grammar/What and Which 68
Russian/Names 68
Russian/Loanwords 70
Russian/Cursive 73
Russian/Prepositions 74
Russian/Verbal Aspect 77
Russian/False Friends 79
Russian/Interrogative Pronouns 80
Russian/Personal Pronouns 81
Russian/Possessive Pronouns 82
Russian/Vocabulary 84
Russian/Geographical Names 84
Russian/Useful Words and Expressions 87
Russian/Various Stuff 89
Russian/Cheat Sheet 92

References
Article Sources and Contributors 94
Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors 96

Article Licenses
License 97
Russian 1

Russian
RUSSIAN
РУССКИЙ
Learning the Russian Language, for English Speakers
Содержа́ние (Contents)

Printable version: Russian is a Category II


View language.
(Foreign Service Institute (US))

Russian English Wikipedia's article:


Wikipedia: Russian language
Википедия

Russian/Contents
The Russian Wikibook is a collaborative effort to create a
comprehensive textbook for learners of the Russian language. Russian
is an East Slavic language, related to Ukrainian and Belarusian, and is
spoken by over 350 million people. This book includes four sections: a
main text curriculum, a grammar supplement, an appendix, and a
vocabulary. The main text guides the student through the lessons and
provides everything to understand the texts that are to be understood.
The grammar supplement provides a greater detail into the concepts
presented in the lessons. The appendix is there to refer to for usage and
МоскваMoscow, the capital of Russia
other miscellaneous concepts. The vocabulary groups words into
concept-based sections for studying.

Содержа́ние (Contents)
• Предисло́вие (Foreword)
• Áзбука (Alphabet)

Гла́вы (Chapters)
1. Как тебя́ зову́т? (What is your name?)
2. Lesson 2 - Introducing yourself.
3. Lesson 3 - Basic Grammar.
4. Lesson 4 - Vocabulary.
5. Lesson 5 - Text.
Russian/Contents 2

Грамма́тика (Grammar)
• Introduction
• Adjectives
• Articles
• Gender
• Pronouns
• Cases
• Nominative
• Genitive
• Dative
• Accusative
• Instrumental
• Prepositional
• (Noun cases)
• Past tense
• Verbs
• What and Which

Приложе́ние (Аppendix)
• Russian Names
• Alphabet - Overview of Cyrillic. Typing.
• Loanwords
• Cursive
• Prepositions
• Verbal Aspect
• False Friends
• Pronouns
• Interrogative Pronouns
• Personal Pronouns
• Possessive Pronouns

Слова́рь (Vocabulary)
• Vocabulary
• Numbers
• Geographical names
• Useful Words and Expressions
• Various Stuff is a collection of stuff that can be used at other places later.

Internet Resources
Contributors
Russian/Contents 3

Russian language · Русский язык


Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

References
[1] http:/ / en. wikibooks. org/ w/ index. php?title=Template:Russian& action=edit

Russian/Alphabet
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Russian alphabet
The Russian alphabet has 33 letters. It descended from the Greek alphabet, so while some may appear like the
English alphabet, the pronunciation might be very different. It consists of 21 consonants and 10 vowel letters. The
last two, ь, and ъ , are neutral, as they do not designate sounds.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33

А Б В Г Д Е Ё Ж З И Й К Л М Н О П Р С Т У Ф Х Ц Ч Ш Щ ъ Ы ь Э Ю Я

а б в г д е ё ж з и й к л м н о п р с т у ф х ц ч ш щ ы э ю я

Similar to English: easiest to grasp, their sound resembles the English sound

Hard and soft signs: see Signs

"Greek" letters: easy for people that know Greek. Л is pronounced like Lambda.

Basic pronunciation rules


Notes on the Alphabet and Pronunciation of Russian
1. While Russian has a mostly phonetic orthography, there are a few exceptions:
• The letter "г" between the letters "e" and "o" and between two "o"'s it is pronounced as /v/, e.g. "его" (his, him)
is pronounced /jevo/. This rule only applies when "его" is at the end of the word. Note that this applies only to
the case endings (genitive and accusative), there are words that fit this description but are pronounced
normally, e.g. "много" /mnogo/ - many, much, a lot (of)
• Voiced consonants with voiceless counterparts lose their voicing at the end of a word, e.g. "строганов"
(stroganoff) is pronounced /stroganof/.
Russian/Alphabet 4

• Voiced consonants with voiceless counterparts become unvoiced before voiceless consonants, e.g. "водка"
(vodka) is pronounced /votka/.
• Similarly, voiceless consonants with voiced counterparts become voiced before voiced consonants, e.g.
"футбол" (soccer/football) is pronounced /fudbol/.
• Vowel is only fully pronounced when it is under accent. In the non-accented (weak) position, vowel is
"reduced" to the neutral sound. Spelling, on the other hand, doesn't depend on whether position is accented or
not. This particularly applies to the 'o'.
2. The hard sign (Ъ/ъ) indicates that the preceding consonant is not palatalized. However, it has been very rarely
used since the spelling reform of 1918.
3. The soft sign (Ь/ь) indicates that the preceding consonant is palatalized.
4. The vowels Е/е, Ё/ё, И/и, Ю/ю, Я/я make the consonants before them palatal consonant. This means that one
pronounces the consonant with the middle of the tongue raised, pressing against the hard palate.

Pronunciation mnemonics
1. Letters identical to their latin equivalents : к о м е т а (comet)
2. "Greek" letters: г л ф (as in Gamma, Lambda, Phi). Try also, the Russian word, флаг, which means "flag".
3. да (da) нет (nyet): two easy Russian words that show you how д, н and е are pronounced
4. суши-бар (sushi-bar): these are popping up all over the place in St. Petersburg... this word is a very useful way of
learning how с, у, ш, и, б and р are pronounced
5. хип-хоп (hip-hop): actually, the х is a much harsher sound, like the "ch" in Scottish "loch", but otherwise
хип-хоп music can help you learn х and п
6. союз (Soyuz): useful for learning the ю and the з (which you should just think of as a cursive latin Z)
7. я (ya/I;) and вы (vy/you): pronouns you'll be using most often when talking with strangers, as in "do you speak
English? I do not speak Russian". Unlike English, pronouns can be ommited due to context in the present and
future tenses.
8. царь (tsar) and чай (chai): for keeping your ц and ч straight

See also
• How to type Russian

Lesson 1 >>
Russian/Typing 5

Russian/Typing
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

This page overviews how to type in the Cyrillic alphabet, which is used in the Russian language.

Stuck in a lab/cafe/library?
Even if you have no administrator access, you can still type in Cyrillic! It might not be ideal, but it will do in a pinch.
Please see the excellent 'Virtual Keyboard for Russian and Ukranian' by Paul Gorodyansky. Google for it, or try
here: http://www.russianaa-brooklyn.com/VirtKbd/screen_e.htm [1]

Ubuntu 9.04

Step 1 add the keyboard layout indicator applet to the panel


• Right click on the main panel, somewhere where it is empty and gray.
• (ie, move the mouse all the way to the top left hand corner of the screen, right click)
• click 'add to panel'
• choose the 'keyboard indicator' applet
• You should see a new panel applet, with something like 'USA' printed on it.
• Right click the 'USA'
• Go to Keyboard Preferences
• Click Layouts
• Click Add

Step 2 choose a layout


• You can search under Russian Language, there are several options.
• If you have a US/English keyboard, you might like the 'USA Phonetic Russian' layout. You can only find this by
looking under English language or United States as a country.
• Add it
• Now, you should be able to switch your layout by left-clicking on the applet.
• It should switch from saying USA to Rus or USA to USA2.
• Try clicking it, and typing in cyrillic.
Russian/Typing 6

Step 4 tweaking
• If you want to switch layout via keyboard---
• Right click on the applet
• Go to keyboard preferences
• Layouts
• Layout Options
• Keys to switch layout
• If you are using the USA Russian Phonetic layout you can use a 'level 3' key to instantly let you type punctuation
and other normal US-english characters. Look under layout options/keys for level 3.
• Alternative: You can also use SCIM

KDE
Note: the X server configuration (see #XFree86 below) may conflict with KDE settings if you change both.
Make sure you have Russian i18n installed. Go to Regional & Accessibility - Keyboard Layout in the KDE Control
Center. Add the Russian layout to your active layouts. You might want to choose the phonetic Layout variant
(yawerty, or яверты). With the flag icon in your taskbar you can now switch between different layouts.
Many letters now are where you expect them to be (for example s - с, p - п, g - г), but some others are harder to find:
• `ю
• =ч
• [ш
• ]щ
• \э
• # ё (shift 3)
• $ Ё (shift 4)

Mac OS X
You don't need to install any software or fonts, but you do need to add Russian to your computer's list of languages.
Open System Preferences from the Dock and click on 'International'.
There you will find a tab called 'Languages' containing a list which may already include Russian. If it isn't there,
click 'Edit List' and add it.
Don't put Russian at the top of your list unless you want to start using Russian date styles or list attributes in all of
your applications.
Another tab called 'Input Menu' in the same place will allow you to choose a keyboard layout such as Cyrillic or
Phonetic.
Then you can switch keyboard layouts and languages at any time using the flag icon in the top-right of the screen.
Russian/Typing 7

Windows
Instructions follow for adding a
traditional Russian keyboard layout for
Windows, however many may prefer
to use a phonetic Russian keyboard
layout. The setup is slightly more
involved as the user must either create
or use an existing third party keyboard
layout. One way to set up common
versions of Windows with a phonetic Russian layout is to follow Paul Gorodyansky's instructions on his
"Russification" site using files he has created for this purpose. The relevant English language page is http:/ / winrus.
com/kbd_e.htm.

For Windows 2000:


1. Click the Start button.
2. Go to Settings...Control Panel.
3. Double-click Keyboard.
4. Click the Input Locales tab.
5. Click the Change... button to bring up the Text Services window.
6. Under Installed Services, click Add....
7. In the drop-down list of input languages, select Russian and click OK.
8. If you would like to change between keyboard inputs without going through the Control Panel each time, click
the Language Bar button under Preferences in the Text Services window. Next select to Show the Language Bar
on the Desktop and click OK.
9. To exit, click OK in the Text Services window and in the Keyboard Properties window.
If you don't see "Russian" in the list:
1. Go back to Control Panel.
2. Double-click Regional Options
3. Under Language Settings for the system check off Cyrillic
4. Click OK
Note: You might need Windows 2000 CD>
Better to check Cyrillic off during installation of Windows.

Windows XP
To set up the keyboard for Cyrillic Russian/Ukraine in Windows XP
1. click on 'Start'
2. Go to 'Control Panel'
3. Click 'Regional & Language Options'
4. Click 'Language' tab
5. Click 'Settings'
6. Add 'Russian'
7. Click 'Apply' and then 'OK'
Russian/Typing 8

Windows Vista
To add the Cyrillic keyboard for use on your computer:
1. Click on the windows logo in the bottom left hand corner
2. Click the Control Panel button (or clickable text if you have it set that way)
• For ease of finding this, press in the left pane "Switch to classic view"
1. Now select Regional and Language Options
2. Click on the Keyboards and Languages tab
3. Press Change Keyboards
• A window should appear that lists all the installed languages to your computer. This window should be called
Text Services and Input Languages
1. Press Add...
2. Now scroll down to where it says Russian (Russia)
3. Expand that menu by pressing the +
• If the dropdown menu Keyboard isn't already expaneded, press that too
1. Now checkbox Russian and press OK, and then Apply.
• If this is the first language you've added to this computer, a small icon near your taskbar that says "EN" should
appear, to change the input language to Russian for whatever window you have opened, press it and select RU.
• Please note, every time you change windows (say from an IM window to your browser) it will keep your
language setting on the previous window, and the new one will be set to use your default input language, which is
most likely EN.
Keyboard icon wil show on taskbar. Left click to toggle between English and Russian.
As an added help, apply keyboard stickers for Cyrillic Russian/Ukraine. You can find them on e-Bay, under 'stickers,
Keyboard, under Computer/Networking. They are available in several colors and are quite reasonable.

XFree86
XFree86 4.3 may be configured for Russian keyboard layout in the Keyboard InputDevice section of the
configuration file (typically /etc/X11/XF86Config). Add the following two lines to that section:

Option "XkbLayout" "us,ru"


Option "XkbOptions" "grp:shift_toggle"

This arrangement will allow you to switch between US and Russian layouts by pressing the shift keys together. Note
that this configuration is independent of the desktop environment (GNOME, KDE) or window manager (sawfish,
metacity, kwin) in use, and might conflict with it if you change both.

X.Org
Same as XFree86, but the configuration file is called “xorg.conf”.

References
[1] http:/ / www. russianaa-brooklyn. com/ VirtKbd/ screen_e. htm
Russian/Lesson 1 9

Russian/Lesson 1
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Lesson 1 — Как тебя зовут?

Dialogue
Саша: Привет! Меня зовут Саша. Как тебя зовут?
Катя: Привет, Саша. Меня зовут Катя. Как дела?
Саша: Хорошо. А у тебя?
Катя: Очень хорошо.
Саша: Я студент. А ты студентка?
Катя: Да, я студентка.
Смольный институт The Smolny Institute, which
Саша: Ну, пока.
was used as Lenin's headquarters during the
Translation (wait until the end of the lesson). October Revolution.

Hello!

Здравствуйте!
Russian/Lesson 1 10

Russian Vocabulary • Lesson 1


Привет! Hello!

English Русский Listen Notes

Hello здрáвствуйте ·

здрáвствуй ·

Hi привéт · X

Good morning! дóброе ýтро

Good day! дóбрый день

Good evening! дóбрый вéчер

Good night! спокóйной нóчи

See you later! покá · X

Goodbye до свидáния · O

• The first "в" in "здравствуйте" is silent.


• The adjective добрый means "kind".

Formal and Informal


Russian distinguishes between formal and informal modes of address (register). Friends and family address each
other using the informal register with the second person singular pronoun "ты" (you), while employees and students
use the formal register with bosses and professors with the second person plural pronoun "вы" (you, referring to
more than one person). In the vocabulary tables "Notes" column, the "X" denotes an exclusively informal term, and
the "O" indicates an exclusively formal term.
Examples
—Доброе утро, студенты!
—До свидания, профессор.
—Катя, пока!
Russian/Lesson 1 11

What's your name?

—Как тебя зовут?


—Владимир. А тебя?
—Иосиф. Очень приятно.

Russian Vocabulary • Lesson 1


Как тебя зовут? What is your name?

English Русский Notes

What is your name? как тебя́ зову́т? X

как вас зову́т? O

My name is.. меня́ зову́т..

Your name is.. тебя́ зову́т.. X

вас зову́т.. O

Nice to meet you. óчень прия́тно

• "Как тебя зовут?", the phrase used to ask someone's name, translates to "How do they call you?"
• "Очень приятно", means "very pleasant."
Examples
• Как тебя зовут?
What is your name?
• Меня зовут Пётр.
My name is Pyotr.
• Очень приятно.
Nice to meet you.
Grammar
• It should now be obvious that тебя and вас are interchangeable, the former used in casual / familiar settings and
the latter in formal settings; вас is also the plural form of "you". An example may be у вас есть хлеб? meaning,
"do you have bread?" - being the plural and formal both.
Russian/Lesson 1 12

• With the first phrase comes an interesting note. Because the function of words is mostly determined by
declension, word order is mostly free. "Меня зовут Пётр" and "Пётр меня зовут" mean the same thing. "Mostly"
is highlighted, however, because some combinations do not work, so avoid straying too far from the word order
of the examples until later.
Go to the exercise.

Russian names
Russian names for people are composed of a given name, a
patronymic, and a family name. The given name is a person's first
name, and is usually chosen by the parents at birth. The patronymic is a
derivation of the father's name, modified by gender. The family name
is the name shared by the immediate family and passed down by the
male descendants, but also modified by gender.

• Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin (Влади́мир Влади́мирович Пу́тин)


is Russia's second president.
• Vladimir is his given name.
• Vladimirovich is his patronymic. His father was also named
Vladimir. If he had a sister, her patronymic would be
Экскурсовод:
Vladimirovna (Владимировна).
—В этом доме Владимир Ильич Ленин с
• Putin is his family name. His wife, Lyudmila Putina has the Инессой Армамнд скрывался от Надежды
feminine version of the name, Putina. Константиновны Крупской.
• Maria Yuryevna Sharápova (Мари́я Ю́рьевна Шара́пова) is a
famous tennis player.
• Maria is her given name.
• Yuryevna is her patronymic. Her father was named Yuri. If she had a brother, his patronymic would be
Yuryevich (Юрьевич).
• Sharapova is her family name. Her father's family name is Sharapov.
Russian/Lesson 1 13

How are you?

—Мария, как дела?


—Неплохо.

Russian Vocabulary • Lesson 1


Как дела? How are you?

English Русский Listen Notes

How are you? Как дела́?

Well ("goodly") хорошо́ ·

Badly пло́хо

Not badly непло́хо

And you? А у тебя́? X

А у вас? O

Thank you спаси́бо ·

• The three answers to "как дела" are adverbs.


• You can append "очень" (very) to the front of any adverb.
Example
• Иван: Привет, Юлия. Как дела?
Hello, Yuliya. How are you?
• Юлия: Очень хорошо, спасибо. А у тебя, Иван?
Very well, thanks. And you, Ivan?
• Иван: Неплохо. Пока!
Not bad. See you later!
Go to the exercise.
Russian/Lesson 1 14

Who is this?

—Кто это?
—Это Миша. Он лев.
—Ясно. Очень приятно.

Russian Vocabulary • Lesson 1


Кто это? Who is this?

English Русский Listen Notes

I am.. Я.. ·

You Ты.. X
are..
Вы.. O

He is.. Он.. M

She is.. Она.. F

Student студе́нт · M

студе́нтка F

Who is.. кто ·

This э́то ·

Examples
• Сергей: Доброе утро, Наташа. Как дела?
Good morning, Natasha. How are you?
• Наташа: Хорошо, спасибо. Кто это?
Well, thanks. Who is this?
• Сергей: Это Иван. Он студент.
This is Ivan. He is a student.
• Иван: Очень приятно. Вы студентка?
Nice to meet you. Are you a student?
• Наташа: Да, я студентка.
Yes, I am a student.
Grammar
• Russian lacks "is" and articles: Russian does not use the existence verb "быть" in the present tense, or articles
such as "a", "an", or "the." Simply following "я" (I, me) with a noun suffices to say "I am a.." However, in written
Russian, when the subject is a noun (not a pronoun), an em dash (—) functions as the verb. The proper sentence
to say "Ivan is a student" is "Иван — студент."
Russian/Lesson 1 15

• Gender: The noun "студент" is the first instance of grammatical gender. "Студент" is used when the speaker is
referring to himself or another male. "Студентка" is used when the speaker is referring to herself or another
female.
Go to the exercise.

Summary
In this lesson, you have learned
• How to greet people (Привет, доброе утро).
• How to introduce yourself (Меня зовут Иван).
• How to introduce others (Это Сергей).
• How to say how you are (Хорошо, неплохо).
Finish the exercises and translate the introductory dialogue before moving on.

Lesson 2 >>

Russian/Lesson 2
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Произноше́ние Pronunciation
Russian letters do not always sound the same. The pronunciation depends on their position in the word and on the
stress of the letter. Reduced О (when not stressed) sounds like А, as in the A in about. Reduced Е (when not
stressed) sounds like И, as in the E in piglet. However, this reduction is not so strong as in the case of O. If you
pronounce these letters without reducing them you will be understandable, but sound strange. Voiced consonants at
the end of the word become unvoiced. Таз sounds like tas, взвод sounds like vzvot. The same thing happens if a
voiced consonant is followed by an unvoiced one. For example, "подско́к" sounds like patskók.

Диало́ги Dialogs
Comment: If you talk to one person and would like to make it respectful, use "Вы" and not "Tы". You need to use
"вы" with a small first letter character only if you need to talk to more than one person. You can also to the audio
version of this dialog.
Здра́вствуйте, я рад (ра́да) Вас ви́деть!
Zdrastvuyti, ya rat (rada) Vas vidjet
Hello, I am glad to see you!
Note: ра́да(rada) is what a female speaker would say, while рад(rat) is what a male speaker would say. This means
glad.
До́брый день, и я то́же.
Russian/Lesson 2 16

Dobry denj, i ya tozhi


Good afternoon, me too.
Меня́ зовут́ Джо́ан, а Вас?
Minya zavut Joanne, ah Vas?
My name is Joanne, and yours? (Literally, "[they] call me Joanne, and [how do they call] you").
О́чень прия́тно!
Ochin' priyatna
Pleased to meet you. (Literally, "[it is] very pleasant").
А меня́ — Ма́рья Степа́новна, мо́жно про́сто Ма́ша.
A minya – Maryah Stipanavna, mozhna prosta Masha
And mine is Marya Stepanovna, one may call me just Masha. (Literally, "and [they call] me Marya
Stepanovna, [one] may [call me] just Masha").
Спаси́бо, до встре́чи!
Spasiba, da fstrechi
Thank you, see you again! (Literally, "thank you, till another meeting").
До свида́ния.
Da svidanya
Good bye. (Literally, "till another seeing").
...

Lesson 3 >>
Russian/Lesson 3 17

Russian/Lesson 3
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
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Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Я студeнт.
This means "I am a student" in Russian.
• "Я" means "I".
• "студе́нт", as you may remember from Lesson 1, means "student".
• Russian does not distinguish "a student" from "the student"; that is, it does not use articles ("a", "an", "the"). So
the above sentence could also be translated as "I am the student."
• Russian does not use the verb to be in the present tense. Instead, a dash separates the subject of the sentence from
the predicate (but the dash is not put between a pronoun and a verb).
Examples

You not student.

Ты не студeнт. ("You are not a student.")

This boy – student.

Этот мальчик студeнт. ("This boy is a


– student.")

Russian has eight personal pronouns altogether:

я (I) мы (we)

ты (you, singular) вы (you,


plural)

он (he), она́ (she), оно́ они́ (they)


(it)

Grammar vs. vocabulary; "getting by" vs. "good Russian"


Are you learning Russian to "get by" on a one-week business trip to Moscow? Or do you want to learn "good
Russian"?
To "get by" you need basic grammar, but not the byzantine grammar of "good Russian." You could treat all nouns as
if they were masculine, and all verbs as if you are the person doing the action, and Russians would understand your
meaning. But you should read over the many grammar rules so that you have a clue what Russians are saying. E.g.,
you should be able to recognize when a Russian uses the prepositional case, even if you only use the nominative
case.
If you want to marry a Russian woman, learn good Russian. Russian women (and women all over the world) are
impressed by men with good language skills. Note that in English the words "conjugate" (to produce the different
Russian/Lesson 3 18

forms of a verb) and "conjugal" (relating to marriage) come from the same root word (meaning "to join together"). In
other words, Russian women think that a man who can say "I study, you study, he studies, she studies, we study, they
study" correctly (in Russian) will make a good husband!
Another reason to learn "good Russian" is to prevent Alzheimer's. Working puzzles keeps your brain healthy. Think
of Russian grammar as a set of (really complicated) puzzles.
Native speakers learn grammar as children, by listening to adults talk, and being corrected by their mothers. A child
who reads a lot, and whose parents speak correctly, doesn't need to learn grammar rules. As an adult learning
Russian, you'll learn best if a native Russian listens to you and corrects your mistakes. But the grammar rules will act
as shortcuts, to help you learn faster.
When learning anything, some people are auditory learners, some are visual, and some are movement learners. (See
"The Open Mind," by Dawna Marcova, for more about this.) But all three learning styles are needed for organizing
and committing to long-term memory. You may prefer to hear spoken Russian, or see written Russian, or (for
movement learners) write a Russian word and then write how it sounds in English. You may need to do an activity,
such as cooking dinner, to pay attention. But all of us need to do all of these things to learn well.

Gender
You may guess correctly that the correct way to say "He is a student" in Russian is "Он студент." However, things
change a bit when talking about "она". As in many Indo-European languages—including English until several
hundred years ago—gender is an important feature of Russian grammar. Every noun, as well as the three
third-person singular pronouns, has a characteristic gender: masculine, feminine, or neuter.
Masculine nouns end in a consonant. Remember that й is a consonant.
Feminine nouns end in а or я.
Neuter nouns end in о or е.
Nouns ending in ь can be masculine or feminine. There's no rule, you just have to memorize these words.

Formal and Informal


Russians differentiate between formal and informal social relationships. Two words translate to "you": Вы
(pronounced "vee" but make it short, don't draw out the vowel) is how you say "you" to a teacher, police officer, etc.
Ты (pronounced "tee") is how you say "you" to a friend or family member. Russians are more formal than
Americans, so if in doubt use Вы!
Вы is also "you plural" or "y'all. In other words, you address a superior person as if he or she were several people.
The greeting здравствуйте (formal) and здравствуй (informal) has two forms.
The word "your" also comes in formal and informal: вас (formal) and тебя (informal).

Russian names
Russians use three names: first name, or имя; middle or patronymic name, or отчество, which is their father's first
name plus a suffix meaning "son of" (ович) or "daughter of" (овна); and the last name or family name, or фамилия.
Women's last names add an а to the masculine form of the name.
To address a Russian formally, don't use "Mr." or "Ms." Instead, address the person using his or her first name and
patronymic.
Russians use relatively few first names. There are only a dozen or so men's first names, and maybe three dozen
women's first names. Creativity in baby-naming isn't encouraged.
Russian/Lesson 3 19

Russians also use diminutives or nicknames—lots! Each name typically has a version used by your best friend,
another used by your other friends, another used by your teachers, another used by your grandmother, another used
when you are scolded, etc.

Noun Cases
English uses word order to indicate a sentence's subject and object. E.g., "Bob eats lunch" and "Lunch eats Bob"
have different meanings in English. Word order is less important in Russian. Instead, meaning is conveyed by
suffixes. It would be like an eaten lunch becoming "lunchoo," so you could say "Bob eats lunchoo" or "Lunchoo eats
Bob," and still make it clear that it's the lunch that is eaten (not Bob).
This would be straightforward enough if there were simple one case for the subject of a sentence, and a second case
for the object of the sentence. Instead, Russian has six cases, conveying such meanings as where you are vs. where
you're going, or whether the object of the sentence is animate or inanimate!

Nominative case
The primary case, used for the subject of the sentence ("Bob"), is called the nominative case. This is the case you
find in dictionaries.

Accusative case
"Lunch" is the direct object of "Bob eats lunch." The direct object is used in the accusative case. Masculine and
neuter nouns in the accusative case are the same as nouns in the nominative case. Feminine nouns change their а or я
ending to у or ю, respectively. E.g., "car" is машина (pronounced "masheena") in nominative case, and машину
(pronounced "masheenoo")in the accusative case.

Prepositional case
When a sentence contains a complement of location, the noun is in the prepositional case. In general, you add е
(prounced "yeh") to end of the word. E.g., "I live in Michigan" becomes "I live in Michigane." If the word ends in й,
а, or я, replace that letter with е. E.g., "She is going to Minnesota" becomes "She is going to Minnesote."
There are two exceptions to the е ending. Never write ие, instead write ии (yes, Russians pronounce both, like
"ee-ee"). The other exception is foreign nouns ending in о, и, or у. These look the same as the nominative case. E.g.,
Colorado, Kentucky, and Peru don't change.
Nouns in the prepositional case are always preceded by "in" or "about." Each word comes in two versions. If "in" is
an activity, or a place where an activity is done (for example, the ballet) use на (pronounced "na"). For other places,
use в (pronounced "veh" or pronounced with the next word if it starts with a vowel, e.g., "in Atlanta" would be
"vatlanta").
"About" is о, or, if the following word starts with a vowel, об.
Russian/Lesson 3 20

Куда vs. где


Куда asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.] going?" It's pronounced "kooda," which sounds like a form of head lice.
Где asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.]?" I.e., куда is moving, где is static. It's pronounced "gdye" as in "YEvropa".
Statements that could answer the question куда are in the accusative case. E.g., "We're driving to St. Petersburg,
Florida" would be in the accusative case, if you said it in Russian.
Statements that could answer the question где are in the prepositional case. E.g., "We live in Moscow, Idaho" would
be in the prepositional case.
This is easy to remember because the vowels in Куда are у and а—nouns that end in а (feminine nouns) change to у in
the accusative case. The vowel in где is е, the letter you add to end nouns in the prepositional case.

Genitive case
The genitive case is used with numbers. E.g., "I have six chairs"(У меня есть шесть стульев) is plural both in
English and in Russian! It's genitive case.

Genitive nouns
Masculine and neuter nouns form the genitive case the same way: add а at the end. E.g., стол (sing. table) becomes
стола́, but столы́ (pl. tables) becomes столо́в. The exceptions are masculine words ending in й or ь add я. if the
word ends in a vowel, drop the vowel then add a.
Feminine nouns drop the а and add ы. E.g., лампа (lamp) becomes лампы. The exceptions are if the word ends in я
or ь, or for the 7-letter spelling rule, add и.

Genitive adjectives
Masculine and neuter adjectives form the genitive case the same way: change the ending to ого. This is pronounced
"ovo"! The exceptions are masculine words ending in й or ь, or for the 5-letter spelling rule with the ending
unstressed, change to его (pronounced "yevo").
Feminine adjectives change the ending to ой (rhymes with "boy"). The exceptions are feminine words ending in й or
ь, or for the 5-letter spelling rule with the ending unstressed, change to ей (pronounced "yay").

Genitive case of possessive pronouns

Nominative Genitive Meaning

мой, моё (masc., neut.) моег'о my

твой, твоё (masc., neut.) твоег'о your (informal)

наш, на́ше (masc., neut.) на́шего our

ваш, ва́ше (masc., neut.) ва́шего your (formal,


plural)

моя́ (feminine) мое́й my

твоя́ (feminine) твое́й your (informal)

на́ша (feminine) на́шей our

ва́ша (feminine) ва́шей your (formal,


plural)

The possessive pronouns его́, её, and их (his, hers, theirs) never change.
Russian/Lesson 3 21

Genitive case of demonstrative pronouns

Nominative Genitive Meaning

тот (masc., neut.) чьего́ that

'это, 'этот, 'эти (masc., neut.) э́того this

тот (feminine) чьей that

э́та (feminine) э́той this

Genitive case of "first" and "third"

Nominative Genitive Meaning

оди́н(masc., neut.) одног'о first

тре́тий(masc., neut.) тре́тьего third

одна́(feminine) одно́й first

тре́тья(feminine) тре́тьей third

"I have something"


Genitive case is also used for saying you have something, or you don't have something. To say that you have
something, start with У (means "by" or "next to"). Then change the pronoun (я, ты, вы, etc.) to the following:

Nominative Genitive Pronounciation Meaning

кто у кого́ oo kogo where

я у меня́ oo myehnyah I have

ты у тебя́ oo tyebyah you have (informal)

он у него́ oo nyehgo he has

она у неё oo nyehyo she has

мы у нас oo nas we have

вы у вас oo vas you have (formal or plural)

они у них oo neekh they have

In other words, Russians don't say "Ivan has a dacha," but rather say "By Ivan has dacha."

Dative case
Dative case is used with the indirect object of a sentence. It is, when people want "to say something to her" or "to
give(to sell, to show and etc.) something to him", etc. (for example: He shows to her this beautiful picture (Он
пока́зывает ей э́ту прекра́сную карти́ну). Note here the difference between the direct object from earlier and the
indirect object: Ivan gives a letter (direct object, accusative case) to his sister (indirect object, dative case).
Russian/Lesson 3 22

Nominative Dative Pronounciation Meaning

кто ком'у komoo to whom

я мне mnye to me

ты теб'е tyebye to you (informal)

он ем'у yemoo to him

она ей yey to her

мы нам nam* to us

вы вам vam* to you (formal or plural)

они им eem to them

• The letter "а" in нам and вам is pronouncing as "U" in pronoun "Us".

Russian lacks "a," "the," and "to be"


Russian lacks the articles "a," "an," and "the." English uses the definite article "the" to indicate a specific place,
thing, etc.: "I ate the orange" suggests there was only one orange, or it was special or something. English uses the
indefinite articles "a" and "an" to indicate that the following noun is not a specific, e.g., "I ate an orange" suggests
there were several oranges. Note that English uses articles only for singular nouns: "I ate oranges" (plural) lacks an
article.
Russian also lacks the verb "to be," and its conjugations "am," "are," and "is."
Thus the English four-word sentence "I am a student" is just two words in Russian: "Я студент." In written Russian,
when a sentence has two nouns in a row, a — is written between the nouns to indicate the verb "to be." E.g., "Tanya is
a student" translates to "Таня — студент."

"This," "these," and "those"


Russian has the adjectives "this" and "these." To "get by" in Russian use это (pronounced "eto") for both "this"
(singular) and "these" (plural). To speak "good Russian" it gets confusing. If a word is between "this" (or "these")
and the noun ("This is my suitcase") then это doesn't change. But if the noun immediately follows "this" or "these"
("This suitcase is mine") then, if the noun is masculine, это changes to этот (pronounced "etot") ; if the noun is
feminine then это changes to эта (pronounced "eta") ; if the noun is neuter then это doesn't change; and if the noun is
plural ("these") then это changes to эти (pronounced "etee") .
Russian also has the adjective "those": те.

Plural nouns
In English we add "s" (or "es") to indicate that a noun is plural. Russian isn't so simple.
Masculine nouns ending in a "hard" consonant add ы. E.g., студент (student) becomes студенты (students).
Masculine nouns ending in the "soft" consonants й or ь add и. E.g., словарь (dictionary) becomes словари
(dictionaries). If you speak Russian (without writing) you can "get by" without learning this distinction, as ы and и
sound similar.
Feminine nouns ending in а change the а to ы. Feminine nouns ending in я change the я to и. Thus masculine and
feminine nouns follow a similar pattern for plural. Again, if you only want to speak "get by" Russian you can ignore
this distinction because a and я sound similar.
Neuter nouns have a different pattern for plural. Neuter nouns ending in o change the o to a. Neuter nouns ending in
e change the e to я. Thus, neuter plural nouns look like feminine singular nouns.
Russian/Lesson 3 23

Note that these rules are for plural nouns. Plural adjectives follow different rules.

The 7-letter spelling rule


Now it gets complicated. After the letters к, г, х, ш, щ, ж, and ч, always add (or change a or я to) и, not ы. E.g.,
книга (book) becomes книги (books).

Exceptional plurals
Some masculine nouns drop the last vowel before adding ы or и. E.g., подарок (present or gift) becomes подарки.
Some masculine nouns add a for plural. E.g., дом (house) becomes дома (houses).
Words of foreign origin ending in o, и, or у don't change between singular and plural. E.g., радио means "radio" or
"radios." Note that foreign nouns with these endings also don't change in prepositional case (e.g., Colorado,
Kentucky, and Peru).

The personal pronouns "he," "she," and "it"


The personal pronouns are straightforward:
"He" (masculine) is он.
"She" (feminine) is она.
"It" (neuter) is оно.
"They" (plural) is они.
Note that in English we use "he" and "she" for animate objects (people and animals) and "it" for everything else, but
Russians use "he" for all masculine nouns, "she" for all feminine nouns, and "it" for all neuter nouns. Thus, a car
(машина) is always "she" because машина is feminine.

"Whose?"
The English question word "whose" translates to four Russian words, depending on gender:
чей (pronounced "chey") is masculine.
чья (pronounced "chyah") is feminine.
чьё (pronounced "chyo") is neuter.
чьи (pronounced "chyee") is plural.
If you just want to "get by," say "chee" and you'll be right about 50% of the time.

The possessive pronouns "my," "your," "our," "his," "her," and "their"
To learn to conjugate verbs as well as possessive pronouns, memorize the following order of pronouns:
я (I) ты (you, informal) он/она (he/she) мы (we) вы (you, formal and plural) они (they)
In this order, in English the possessive pronouns are "my, your, his, her, our, (no formal your), their." Russian makes
this complicated because four of these words change depending on whether the following noun is masculine,
feminine, neuter, or plural. Three don't change.
The three possessive pronouns that don't change are "his," "her," and "their." In Russian these are его ("his"),
pronounced "yehvo" (not "yehgo"); её, pronounced "yehyo" ("her yo-yo" would sound like "yeh-yo yo-yo"); and их
(pronounced "eech," like the German word for "I").
The four possessive pronouns that change are "my," "your" (informal and formal), and "our."
Russian/Lesson 3 24

"My" is мой (masculine, pronounced "moy," which sounds vaguely like a New York Yiddish version of "my"); моя
(feminine, pronounced "mo-yah"); моё (neuter, pronounced "mo-yo"), and мои (plural, pronounced "mo-ee").
"Your" (informal Ты) is твой (masculine, pronounced "tvoy"); твоя (feminine, pronounced "tvo-yah"); твоё (neuter,
pronounced "tvo-yo"), and твои (plural, pronounced "tvo-ee").
"Our" (Мы) is наш (masculine, pronounced "nash," not like "Nashville" but rhymes with "wash"); наша (feminine,
pronounced "nasha"); наше (neuter, pronounced "nashyeh"), and наши (plural, pronounced "nashee").
"Your" (formal Вы) is ваш (masculine, pronounced "vash", rhymes with "wash"); ваша (feminine, pronounced
"vasha"); ваше (neuter, pronounced "vash-yeh"), and ваши (plural, pronounced "vashee"). A memory aid is "your
car is a washing machine." Picture opening the hood of a car and finding a washing machine where the engine should
be. "Your car" is ваша машина (sounds like "washing machine").

Adjective endings (nominative case)


Russian adjectives agree with their nouns in gender, number, and case. Here we will learn the adjective endings for
gender and number (singular vs. plural). (Cases will be later.)
The dictionary form of adjectives end in ый (pronounced "ee"). This is the ending with masculine nouns. E.g., "new
pencil" is новый карандаш (pronounced "no-vee karandash").
With feminine nouns, the adjective ends in ая. E.g., "new car" is новая машина (pronounced "no-vah-yah
masheena").
With neuter nouns, the adjective ends in ое. E.g., "new dress" is новое платье (pronounced "no-vo-yeh plat-yeh").
As a memory aid, think of "oh yeah."
With plural nouns, the adjective ends in ые. E.g., "new students" is новые студенты (pronounced "no-vih-yeh
studentih"). As a memory aid, think of plural as one masculine and one neuter object. Take the first letter from the
masculine ending (ы) and the second letter from the neuter ending (е) and you get ые.
Adjectives with "soft endings" (й or ь) have the same second letter in their' endings, but the first letter of the endings
change. The masculine ending ый becomes ий, the feminine ending ая becomes яя, the neuter ending ое becomes ее
(like the "yeah-yeah" chorus of 1965 Beatles songs), and the plural ending ые becomes ие (maintaining the memory
aid that you take a masculine object and a neuter object to get two objects).

5- and 7-letter spelling rules


Recall that with plurals, after the letters г, ж, к, х, ч, ш, and щ, you use и, not ы. This 7-letter spelling rule also
applies to adjectives. As a memory aid, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.
The 5-letter spelling rule is that after the letters ж, ц, ч, ш, and щ, don't write an unstressed o, but instead write e. As
a memory aid, ц, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.

"What?" and "which?"


Что (pronounced "shto," not "chto") and какой (pronounced "kokoy") both mean "what." As a loose rule, какой
means "which." The correct rule is that if a noun follows "what," use какой. If no noun follows "what," use что.
As a memory aid, the following noun's gender and number change какой. Какой precedes masculine nouns, какая
precedes feminine nouns, какое precedes neuter nouns, and какие precedes plural nouns. Because что is never
followed by a noun, it never changes form.
If you just want to "get by," always use что for "what."
Russian/Lesson 3 25

Showing Ownership
In English, "my" and "I have" are different, just as "your" and "you have" are different. Russian makes a similar
distinction—but it's more complicated.
First, the pronoun is in the genitive case (меня, тебя etc.), which indicates possession/ownership. The preposition
used with the genitive pronouns to indicate ownership is У (pronounced "oo"), meaning roughly "with".
The forms are as follows:
"I have": У меня (pronounced "oo meen-yah", meaning roughly "with me")
"You have" (informal): У тебя (pronounced "oo teeb-yah", meaning roughly "with you")
"You have" (formal): у вас (pronounced "oo vas")
"He has": у его (pronounced "oo ye-vo", meaning "with him")
"She has": у ее (pronounced "oo ye-yo", meaning "with her")
"We have": у нас (pronounced "oo nas", meaning "with us")
"They have": у их (pronounced "oo eech", meaning "with them")
Thus the question "У тебя карандаш?" when interpreted rather literally, means "With you is a pencil?" It is easy to
see how this can be correctly interpreted as "Do you have a pencil (with you)?" or even just "Do you own a pencil?"
These three phrases are sometimes followed by есть (pronounced "yehst", meaning "is"). Есть questions the
existance of something, e.g., У вас есть синий костюм? ("Do you have a blue suit?").

Verb conjugation, present tense


In English we say, "I study," "you study," "he studies," "she studies," "we study," "they study." Note that some
pronouns use "study," while other pronouns use "studies." "Verb conjugation" is how verbs change with pronouns.
English has simple two-form verb conjugation for the present tense.
Russian verbs conjugate in six forms, for "I", "you (singular and informal)", "he" and "she", "we", "you (plural and
formal singular)" and "they". In addition, Russian verbs conjugate in either of two ways. In other words, some verbs
are first conjugation, when others are second conjugation.
All verbs have an infinitive form, which is listed in dictionaries. Typically this form ends in ть.
First-conjugation verbs usually end in ать. These verbs conjugate by dropping the ть and replacing it with the
following endings:

я "I" ю or у чит'аю ("read," pronounced "cheet-a-you") жив'у ("live," pronounced "zheevoo")

ты "you" (informal) ешь or чит'аешь ("read," pronounced "cheet-a-yesh") живёшь ("live," pronounced "zheevyosh")
ёшь

он/она "he," "she" ет or ёт чит'ает ("reads," pronounced "cheet-a-yet") живёт ("live," pronounced "zheevyot")

мы "we" ем or ём чит'аем ("read," pronounced "cheet-a-yem") живём ("live," pronounced "zheevyom")

вы "you" (formal) ете or ёте чит'аете ("read," pronounced живёте ("live," pronounced "zheevyota")
"cheet-a-yehta")

они "they" ют or ут чит'ают ("read," pronounced "cheet-a-yout") жив'ут ("live," pronounced "zheevoot")

Second-conjugation verbs usually end in ить. These verbs conjugate by dropping the ть and replacing it with the
following endings:
Russian/Lesson 3 26

я "I" ю говор'ю ("talk," pronounced "govor-you")

ты "you" (informal) ишь говор'ишь ("talk," pronounced "govor-eesh")

он/она "he," "she" ит говор'ит ("talks," pronounced "govor-eet")

мы "we" им говор'им ("talk," pronounced "govor-eem")

вы "you" (formal) ите говор'ите ("talk," pronounced "govor-eetyeh")

они "they" ят говор'ят ("talk," pronounced "govor-yat")

Verb conjugation, past tense


Past tense verbs are somewhat simpler. They conjugate with the gender (or number) of the pronoun. Thus, "I
understood" changes depending on whether the speaker is a man or a woman. But the verb is the same for "he
understood" or for "I understood," where the speaker is a man. "We understood" and "they understood" are the same.
To form a past tense verb, drop the ть and add л (pronounced "l") for masculine pronouns ("I," "you," "he"), ла
(pronounced "la") for feminine pronouns ("I," "you," "she"), and ли (pronounced "lee") for plural pronouns (мы,
они, "we," "they"). (Neuter subjects can't talk.)

Masculine pronoun "л" понимал ("understood," pronounced "poneemal")

Feminine pronoun "ла" понимала ("understood," pronounced "poneemala")

Plural pronoun "ли" понимали ("understood," pronounced


"poneemalee")

Verb conjugation, future tense


Russian future tense is incredibly more complex in meaning than English future tense. Russian future tense also
contains information pertaining to the [aspect[1]] of the verb.
Imperfective Aspect
The simplest, and imperfective aspect of a verb can be attained by the use of the verb "будь." By placing the correct
form of "будь," in front of a Russian infinitive, you can create a verb in imperfective future tense.
будь roughly means "will"

я бу́ду мы бу́дем

ты бу́дешь вы бу́дете

он/она́/оно́ бу́дет они́ бу́дут

Can you decipher these?


• Я буду играть.
• Ты будешь говорить.
As an FYI, the imperfective aspect in Russian refers to a habitual action that we would not go out of our way to
delineate. While "Я играю в игру" (I am playing the game) shows current action in a way not unlike Еnglish, "Я
играла в игру" (I played-feminine the game) relates a habitual action to the playing of the game in the past. English
leaves this ambiguous.
Russian/Lesson 3 27

Prepositional case adjectives


Recall that the prepositional case is used when the object of a sentence is a location. Earlier you learned how to
modify nouns (usually by adding е).
Russian adjectives must agree with their following noun in gender, number, and case.
With a masculine noun in the prepositional case, a preceding adjective usually ends in ом. The ending is ем for the
5-letter spelling rule, and for soft-ending (й or ь) adjectives.
With a feminine noun in the prepositional case, a preceding adjective usually ends in ой (pronounced "oy"). The
ending is ей (pronounced ("yee") for the 5-letter spelling rule, and for soft-ending (й or ь) adjectives.

Prepositional case plural adjectives and nouns


With a plural noun in the prepositional case, a preceding adjective usually ends in ых (pronounced "ach"). The
ending is их (pronounced ("yach") for the 7-letter spelling rule, and for soft-ending (й or ь) adjectives.
Plural nouns in the prepositional case usually end in ах (pronounced "ach"). The ending is ях (pronounced ("yach")
for soft-ending (й or ь) nouns.

Prepositional case personal pronouns


The personal pronouns change (considerably!) in the prepositional case.
Я ("I") becomes обо мне (pronounced "obo mnyeh").
Ты ("you" informal) becomes о тебе (pronounced "o tyehbyeh").
Он ("he") becomes о нём (pronounced "o nyom").
Она ("she") becomes о ней (pronounced "o nyee").
Мы ("we") becomes о нас (pronounced "o nas").
Вы ("you" formal) becomes о вас (pronounced "o vas").
Они ("they") becomes о них (pronounced "o neech").

Prepositional case possessive pronouns


If the object possessed is masculine or neuter, use the following possessive pronouns: моём ("my"), твоём ("your"
informal), нашем ("our'), вашем ("your" formal), чьём ("whose?"), этом ("this").
If the object possessed is feminine, use the following possessive pronouns: моей ("my"), твоей ("your" informal),
нашей ("our'), вашей ("your" formal), чьей ("whose?"), этой ("this").
If the objects possessed are plural, use the following possessive pronouns: моих ("my"), твоих ("your" informal),
наших ("our'), ваших ("your" formal), чьих ("whose?"), этих ("this").
(Russian schools teach all that to second-graders! Now you understand why Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union
the "evil empire"!)
Russian/Lesson 3 28

Prepositional case question words


Some question words change in the prepositional case. Что ("what," pronounced "shto") changes to о чём
(pronounced "o chyom"). Кто ("who," pronounced "kto") changes to о ком.

Conjunctions: "and," "yes but," and "but"


Let's do something simpler.
И (pronounced "ee") means "and."
А (pronounced "ah") means "yes, but."
Но (pronounced "no") means "but."

Reflexive verbs
In English we add "self" to a pronoun to indicate reflexive action. E.g., "I wash myself" is different from "I wash my
dog." In Russian, reflexive action is in the verb, not in the pronoun. E.g., a Russian would say something like "I
washself."
This reflexive action is indicated by the suffix ся added to the verb, if the verb ends in a consonant. But if the verb
ends in a vowel you instead add сь. Note that the former adds a syllable but the latter doesn't!
The verb учиться means "study" (pronounced "oo-cheet-syah"). The verb conjugates:

я "I" учусь (pronounced "oochoos")

ты "you" (informal) учишься (pronounced "oocheesh-syah")

он/она "he," "she" учится (pronounced "oocheet-syah")

мы "we" учимся (pronounced "oocheem-syah")

вы "you" (formal) учитесь (pronounced "oocheetyes")

они "they" учатся (pronounced "oochat-syah")

Three words for "study"


Russia has three words that translate to "study." (You can imagine that Russians must study three times harder than
Americans to learn language skills!)
Учиться (pronounced "oo-cheet-syah") usually refers to where you go to school, e.g., "I go to Harvard University."
As a memory aid, picture that Russians students cheat.
Изучать (pronounced "ee-zoo-chat") usually refers to the subject you study, e.g., "I study physics." As a memory
aid, think that the zoo is where you study subjects such as monkeys, elephants, etc.
заниматься (pronounced "zan-ee-mat-syah") usually refers to doing homework, e.g., "I'm studying at the library."
As a memory aid, think that your "zany mother makes you do your homework."
There is also a fourth verb, готовиться (perf. подготовиться), which means to study for something, e.g. an exam.
This is used with the preposition к + dative case. Например: Я готовлюсь к экзамену по русскому языку.
Russian/Lesson 3 29

Two words for "also"


Russian has two words that translate to "also."
Тоже (pronounced "to-zheh") means that two people are doing the same thing (e.g., "I'm a student and my sister is
also a student").
Также (pronounced "takzhe") means that one person does two different things (e.g., "I'm a student and I also work
part-time").
As a memory aid, picture that Emperor Tojo of Japan is also the emperor of Russia. He has a reclusive brother
Takzhe who only does things by himself.

Going by foot, by car, and going regularly


Russian has three words that translate to "going."
Идти (pronounced "eed-tee") means to go by foot. As a memory aid, think the conjugation он идёт ("he walks,"
pronounced "on eed-dyot") which sounds like "he's an idiot to walk (with the traffic so dangerous)."
ехать (pronounced "ee-hot") means to go by car, bus, etc. Note that conjugations are еду, едешь, едет, едем, едете,
едут—none have the х!
ходить (pronounced "hod-deet") means to go back and forth habitually, e.g., "I go to school every day." As a
memory aid, think of hod carriers going back and forth up and down ladders (a hod carrier carries morter to a
bricklayer).

Neccessity and freedom


"I have to" translates to я должен (pronounced "dol-zhen," sort of like "dolphin")—if the subject is masculine! If the
subject is feminine, it's должна. If the subject is neuter, it's должно. If the subject is plural, it's должны.
Remember that "have to" is an adjective, not a verb! Don't try to conjugate it as a verb.
The opposite of "have to" is freedom. E.g., "I'm free this evening" means there's nothing you have to do. The
adjectives are свободен (masculine, pronounced "sva-bod-den"), свободна (feminine, pronounced "sva-bod-na"),
свободно (neuter, pronounced "sva-bod-no") and свободны (plural, pronounced "sva-bod-nih").
Note that вы ("you" formal, and "y'all") uses the plural forms, regardless of the gender of the person you're
addressing.
Note that кто ("who") uses the masculine form, regardless of the gender of the person you're asking about

Lesson 4 >>

References
[1] http:/ / en. wikipedia. org/ wiki/ Grammatical_aspect
Russian/Lesson 4 30

Russian/Lesson 4
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Russian Mental Picture Dictionary


These memory aids aren't true! They're nonsense made up to help you remember the meanings of Russian words.

Russian Part of speech English Pronunciation


word meaning

А Yes but… Ah

Авиа noun Air Aveea

Avia aerobics shoes have air soles.

Авиабилет noun Airplane ticket Aveea beelyet

Автор noun Author Avtor

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Актер noun Actor Aktyehr

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Алфавит noun Alphabet Alfaveet

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Америка noun America Amyehreeka

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Американец noun American man Amyehreekanyets

American men are nuts.

Американка noun American woman Amyehreekanka

When a Russian girl names Anya misbehaves, her mother calls her "Anka."

Англия noun England Angleeya

Английский noun English (language) Angleeskee

English people use angled skis. That's why they're such bad skiers.
Russian/Lesson 4 31

Англичанин noun Englishman Angleechaneen

"Channing" is one of those names that only an Englishman would name his son. An eccentric English angler (fisherman) named his son "Angle
Channing."

Англичанка noun Englishwoman Angleechanka

Анкета noun Questionnaire Ankyehta

Russian questionnaires come with an answer kit.

Балерина noun Ballerina Ballyehreena

A cognate (same word in Russian and English)

Банан noun Banana Banan

Банджо noun Banjo Bandzho

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

белый adjective White Byehlee

Билет noun Ticket Beelyeht

A billet is a short letter or ticket ordering a private home to provide lodging and food to a soldier.

Бизнесмен noun Businessman Beezneesmyehn

Бизнесменка noun Businesswoman Beezneesmyehnka

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Блузка noun Blouse Bloozka

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Ботинки noun (plural) Men's shoes Boteenkee

Russian men remember their moms calling their cute little boots "booteenkees."

Брюки noun (plural) Pants Bryoukee

Britches.

В
Russian/Lesson 4 32

В, Во In Veh, Vo

"Во" is used for words beginning with two consonants if the first consonant is В or Ф.

Варежки noun (plural) Mittens Varyehzhkee

Russian mittens make you sing far off key.

Вы pronoun You (formal or plural) Vee

Ваша Your (formal or plural, Vasha


feminine)

Ваша машина means "your car" is a washing machine. Think of a car with a washing machine where the engine should be.

Введение Introduction Vvehdyehneeyeh

Don't confuse with До свидания (good-bye, dos veedaneeyah).

Велосипед noun Bicycle Veloseepyehd

A cognate (same word in Russian and French).

Версия noun Version Verseeyah

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Виза noun Visa Veeza

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Волосы noun Hair Volosih

Russians like big shiny hair, so they use shampoo that gives volume and polish.

Вот Here, here is Vot

Show something to someone.

Всё All, everything, that's all Vsyo

That's all, the show's over.

Галстук noun Necktie Galstook

Газета noun Newspaper Gazyehta

Don't confuse with журнал (magazine, zhoornal). A person who writes a newspapers and a person who writes a magazine are both a журналист
(zhoornalist). In other words, "journalist" is a more prestigious job title because magazines are more prestigious, so newspaper writers want to be
called "journalist" even though they should be called a "gazettist."

Где Where G'dyeh

Australians are always late. The Australian greeting "G'day" doesn't mean "Good day," it means "Where were you?"

Гитара noun Guitar Geetara

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Голова noun Head Gollova


Russian/Lesson 4 33

In A Clockwork Orange, Anthony Burgess changed this to "gulliver," as in Gulliver's Travels, as in "we kicked him in the gulliver." Think of a
picture of Gulliver tied down by the Lilliputians, with the little people dancing around his head.

Голос noun Voice Golloss

Russians have glossy voices. That's why they can make those sliding R's.

Город noun City Gorod

Novgorod is a city between Moscow and St. Petersburg. It means "new city."

Грамматика noun Grammar Grammateeka

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Грязь noun Dirt Gryahz

Grass grows in dirt.

Грязный adjective Dirty Gryahznee

Да Yes Da

Давайте Let's Davaytyeh

It's divine to do this together!

Декларация noun Declaration Deklaratseeyah

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Для For Dlyah

Ask the dealer for anything you want.

Джинсы noun Jeans Jeensih

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Диалог noun Dialogue Deealog

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Дипломат noun Diplomat Deeplomat

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Доброе утро Good morning Dobroyeh utro

Добрый день Good afternoon Dobreey dyehn

Добрый вечер Good evening Dobreey


vyehchyehr

"Dobry den" is Russian for "hello."

Note that "good morning" rhymes, ending in o's. The other "good's" end in "ee."

Документ noun Document Dokoomyehnt

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Дом noun House Dom


Russian/Lesson 4 34

Дома adverb At home Doma

До свидaния Good-bye Do sveedahneeyah

"Sweet on ya"

Драма noun Drama Dramah

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

Есть verb To eat; is; there is, there are Yehst

That eat and is are homonyms suggests that "to be" and "to eat" are the same to a Russian. Or perhaps "you are what you eat"?

Ещё Still; yet; else; also; more; another Yehschyo

Ешё looks like "ewe." Picture a female sheep, standing still. Also picture another female sheep. And picture more female sheep—a whole flock of
ewes.

Жаба noun Toad (Bufo sp.) Zhaba

Жена noun Wife Zhena

Женщина noun Woman Zhensheena

Russian women use hair color that gives them sheen. Also note that жен and жить are the start of many words about women and living, so think of
Old World gender roles where a woman's place was in the home.

Живой adjective Alive, lively, active zheevoi

Picture a lively boy, who lives in cottage in the French countryside.

Жить verb Live (e.g. where you live) Zheet

A cognate with the French word "gîte," pronounced "zheet," which is a country cottage you rent by the week. When asking where a Russian lives,
picture that he or she rents a cottage in the French countryside. Remember that Жить conjugates by changing the т to в, then the next vowel is ё: я
живу, ты живёшь, он/она живёт, мы живём, вы живёте, они живут.

Жук noun Bug, beetle Zhook

Журнал noun Magazine Zhoornal

Cognate with "journal." Don't confuse with Газета (newspaper).

З
Russian/Lesson 4 35

Задание noun Task, assignment Zadaneeyeh

"Is done yet?"

Запись noun Recording Zapees

Здесь Here Zdyes

Здравствуйте Greetings (formal) Zdrastvooytye

Здравствуй Greetings Zdrastvooy


(informal)

Значит particle So, then Znacheet

Значить v.impfv. To mean, signify Znacheet

"So" and "meaning" are homonyms.

зовут noun Name Zovoot

Зуб noun Tooth Zoob

И And Ee

Игра noun Game, acting Eegra

Имя noun First name Eemyah

Институт noun Institute Eensteetoot

A cognate (same word in Russian and English).

лесной adjective Forest Lesnoy

Russians walk silently in forests. They make less noise than Americans.

С
Russian/Lesson 4 36

Стол noun Table Stol

Скрипка noun Violin Scripka

When Russians play violin it screeps or screeches.

(Russian chairs are Стул, stool)

Твой Your Tvoy


(informal)

Товарищ n. Comrade Tovarishch

Russian/Lesson 5
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Словарь (Vocabulary)
слова́рь - vocabulary; dictionary :
текст - text
э́то - this; this is / these are
он - he
Ва́ся Петро́в - Vasya Petrov (short for Васи́лий - Vasily)
ру́сский - Russian (male) (noun and adjective)
живёт - lives; жить to live
Москва́ - (Moskva) Moscow
ему́ - to him (dative case)
ему 12 (двенадцать) лет - he is 12 years old
лет - years (genitive plural); год - year
у́чится - (he, she) studies; учи́ться to study
шко́ла - school
в - in, at
в шко́ле - at school (prepositional case)
в шко́лу - to school (accusative case)
хоте́ть - to want, хо́чет - wants
Russian/Lesson 5 37

стать - to become (+ instrumental case)


лётчик - pilot, flyer
хорошо́ - well
есть - is, have
па́па - dad, оте́ц - father
ма́ма - mum, мать - mother
ста́рший - elder, older
сестра́ - sister
мла́дший - younger
брат - brother
Ви́тя - Vitya (short for Ви́ктор - Victor)
Ле́на - Lena (short for Еле́на - Yelena)
их - their, theirs
дом - house
недалеко́ - not far, near
от - from
ходи́ть - to walk, to go, хо́дит - walks, goes
пешко́м - on foot
люби́ть - love, like, лю́бит - loves, likes
игра́ть - to play
футбо́л - football, soccer
ры́ба - fish
лови́ть ры́бу - to fish, (literally: to catch fish)
мно́го - many, much, a lot (of) (+ genitive)
друг - friend, друзья friends
Ва́син (m), Ва́сина (f) - Vasya's
программи́ст - programmer
рабо́́тать - to work, рабо́́тает - (he/she) works
большо́й - big; large
о́фис - office
иностра́нный - foreign
фи́рма - firm
учи́тель (m), учи́тельница (f) - teacher
учи́тельница англи́йского языка́ (genitive case) - English teacher (f)
англи́йский - English (adjective)
язы́к - language; tongue
сейча́с - now
университе́т - University
реши́ть (to decide)
Russian/Lesson 5 38

реши́л (decided - male singular), реши́ла (decided - female singular), реши́ли (decided - plural)
журнали́ст (m), журнали́стка (f) - journalist
ещё - still
ма́ленький - little, small
но - but
о́чень - very
рисова́ть (to draw), рису́ет (he/she draws)

Текст (Text)
Э́то Ва́ся Петро́в. Он ру́сский. Он живёт в Москве́. Ему́ 12 лет. Он у́чится в шко́ле. Он хо́чет стать лётчиком.
Он у́чится хорошо́. У Ва́си есть па́па и ма́ма, ста́ршая сестра́ Ле́на и мла́дший брат Ви́тя. Их дом недалеко́ от
шко́лы и Ва́ся хо́дит в шко́лу пешко́м.
Ва́ся лю́бит игра́ть в футбо́л и лови́ть ры́бу. У Ва́си мно́го друзе́й.
Ва́син па́па - программи́ст. Он рабо́тает в большо́м о́фисе иностра́нной фи́рмы. Ва́сина ма́ма - учи́тельница
англи́йского языка́ в шко́ле.
Ле́на сейча́с у́чится в университе́те. Она́ реши́ла стать журнали́сткой.
Ви́тя ещё ма́ленький, но он о́чень хорошо́ рису́ет.

Counting years:
1 год (nominative), 2 года, 3 года 4 года (genitive singular)
5 лет, 6 лет ... 20 лет (genitive plural)
21 год (nominative), 22 года, 23 года 24 года
25 лет, 26 лет ... 30 лет (genitive plural)
...

Saying: I have, you have, etc.


У меня есть...
У тебя есть...
У него есть...
У неё есть...
У нас есть...
У вас есть...
У них есть...
Russian/Numbers 39

Russian/Numbers
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Cardinal numbers
0 ноль
1. один, одна, одно
2. два, две
3. три
4. четыре
5. пять
6. шесть
7. семь
8. восемь
9. девять
10. десять
11. одиннадцать
12. двенадцать
13. тринадцать
14. четырнадцать
15. пятнадцать
16. шестнадцать
17. семнадцать
18. восемнадцать
19. девятнадцать
20. двадцать
21. двадцать один
22. двадцать два
30 тридцать
40 сорок
50 пятьдесят
60 шестьдесят
70 семьдесят
80 восемьдесят
90 девяносто
100 сто
101 сто один
110 сто десять
133 сто тридцать три
Russian/Numbers 40

200 двести
300 триста
400 четыреста
500 пятьсот
600 шестьсот
700 семьсот
800 восемьсот
900 девятьсот
1,000 тысяча
1,000,000 один миллион
2,000,000 два миллиона
5,000,000 пять миллионов
1,000,000,000 один миллиард
2,000,000,000 два миллиарда

Use of numerals in context


In English (and in many other Indo-European languages) the items being counted by a numeral are found following
the numeral, and in the plural form. In Russian, the syntax is somewhat more complex. The case of the item must
first be considered. If the item needs to be in the nominative or inanimate accusative case, use the following rule.
The numeral один (1) should be used in the proper form to indicate gender (and, number, believe it or not). For
example: один мальчик (one boy), одна девушка (one girl), одно животное (one animal), одни джинсы (one [pair
of] jeans). The plural form of the numeral (1) is a bit of an oddity, but its use will become clear with time. Following
a form of один should come the item at hand in the nominative or inanimate accusative case, as appropriate.
The numerals два (or две), три, and четыре all require the following item to be presented in the genitive singular
form. The numeral два has two forms: два for masculine and neuter items and две for feminine items. After the
numeral два, each numeral has only a single form. See for example: две девушки (two girls), три кошки (three
cats), четыре мальчика (four boys).
The numerals пять (5) through двадцать (20) require their attached items in the genitive plural forms, as in these
examples: пять девушек (five girls), десять копеек (ten kopeks), шестнадцать рублей (sixteen rubles).
Numerals larger than twenty follow the above rules using the last digit. Think of numerals ending in zero as ending
in ten. For example: тридцать три рюмки (thirty-three shot glasses), сорок один год (forty-one years), шестьдесят
девять слов (sixty-nine words).
When the items at hand belong not in the nominative or inanimate accusative case, the numerals themselves must be
declined in addition to the declension of the items following them. This topic shall be discussed here later. For now,
be glad that these forms are relatively uncommon. Examples follow: Я видел двух друзей (I saw two friends), Ты не
съела ни одной штуки (You didn't eat a single piece).
In short, for nominative (and inanimate accusative) items, use the following rule to select the proper form of the
item:
1 -> nominative
2, 3, 4 -> genitive singular
5 and more -> genitive plural
Russian/Numbers 41

A few more examples


• один час
• два часа
• пять часов
• двадцать один час
• двадцать два часа
• двадцать три часа
• двадцать четыре часа
• один год
• два года
• три года
• четыре года
• пять лет
• пятьдесят один год
• пятьдесят два года
• пятьдесят пять лет
• одна минута
• две минуты
• три минуты
• четыре минуты
• пять минут
• шесть минут
• двадцать одна минута
• тридцать две минуты
• тридцать три минуты
• сорок пять минут

Ordinal numbers
Ordinal numerals in Russian are relatively easy to deal with. They all decline like adjectives. For example: Только
что фотографировала восемнадцатую девушку (She just photographed the eighteenth girl).
1. первый, первая, первое
2. второй, вторая, второе
3. третий, третья, третье
4. четвёртый
5. пятый
6. шестой
7. седьмой
8. восьмой
9. девятый
10. десятый
11. одиннадцатый
12. двенадцатый
13. тринадцатый
14. четырнадцатый
15. пятнадцатый
16. шестнадцатый
Russian/Numbers 42

17. семнадцатый
18. восемнадцатый
19. девятнадцатый
20. двадцатый
21. двадцать первый
22. двадцать второй
30th тридцатый
40th сороковой
100th сотый
1000th тысячный
10000th десятитысячный
1000000th миллионный

Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Mnemonics
Ned Gets Drunk And I Pay

Animate versus Inanimate


The distinction between animate and inanimate is particularly important for the accusative case. In the animate case
the accusative has the same form as the genitive. In the inanimate case it typically looks like the nominative.

Masculine nouns
Masculine Russian nouns generally end in a consonant (hard ending), -й, or a soft sign (-ь) (soft endings). The
exceptions are generally animate: both diminutive forms of forenames (Алёша, Миша), and those nouns referring to
males, such as папа and дедушка, most often ending in -а. These are declined as if feminine, but with masculine
adjective and verb agreement.
This is the conjugation of a masculine, inanimate, hard noun in the singular and plural:
Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension 43

Singular Plural

Nominative университет университеты

Genitive университета университетов

Dative университету университетам

Accusative университет университеты

Instrumental университетом университетами

Prepositional (or: Locative) университете университетах

First declension (masculine nouns ending with nothing and neuter nouns
ending with -о/-е)
little house

case Russian name answer to: little house

Nom имени́тельный кто/что это? ма́ленький дом

Gen роди́тельный нет кого́/чего́? ма́ленького до́ма

Dat да́тельный дава́ть кому́/чему́? ма́ленькому до́му

Acc вини́тельный вини́ть кого́,что́? ма́ленький дом


anim. ма́ленького ма́льчика (boy)

Inst твори́тельный горди́ться кем/чем? ма́леньким до́мом

Prep предло́жный говори́ть о ком/о чём? о ма́леньком до́ме

Second Declension (feminine nouns ending with -а and masculine nouns


ending with -я)
my apartment
N (имени́тельный, кто/что это?) моя́ кварти́ра
G (роди́тельный, нет кого́/чего́?) мое́й кварти́ры
D (да́тельный, дава́ть кому́/чему́?) мое́й кварти́ре
A (вини́тельный, вини́ть кого́/что́?) мою́ соба́ку (dog), мою́ кварти́ру
I (твори́тельный, горди́ться кем/чем?) мое́й кварти́рой
P (предло́жный, говори́ть о ком/о чём?) о мое́й кварти́ре

Third Declension (feminine nouns ending with -ь and neuter nouns ending
with -я)
white door
N (имени́тельный, кто́/что́ это?) бе́лая дверь
G (роди́тельный, нет кого́/чего́?) бе́лой две́ри
D (да́тельный, дава́ть кому́/чему́?) бе́лой две́ри
A (вини́тельный, вини́ть кого́/что́?) бе́лую ло́шадь (horse f.), бе́лую дверь
I (твори́тельный, горди́ться кем/чем?) бе́лой две́рью
L (предло́жный, говори́ть о ко́м/о чё́м?) о бе́лой две́ри
Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension 44

Fourth Declension (Plural only nouns and all the above nouns in plural form)
white tables
(singular form: white table, белый стол)
N (имени́тельный, кто́/что́ это?) бе́лые столы́
G (роди́тельный, нет кого́/чего́?) бе́лых столо́в
D (да́тельный, дава́ть кому́/чему́?) бе́лым стола́м
A (вини́тельный, вини́ть кого́/что́?) озорны́х ма́льчиков (naughty boys), бе́лые столы́
I (твори́тельный, горди́ться кем/чем?) бе́лыми стола́ми
L (предло́жный, говори́ть о ко́м/о чём?) о бе́лых стола́х
<!-- It seems the following examples belong to the plural form of the first declension, just as the above example.
курс - the course

Singular Plural

Nominativ курс курсы

Genitiv курса курсов

Dativ курсу курсам

Akkusativ курс курсы

Instrumental курсом курсами

Präpositiv курсе курсах

участник - the participant

Singular Plural

Nominativ участник участники

Genitiv участника участников

Dativ участнику участникам

Akkusativ участник участники

Instrumental участником участниками

Präpositiv участнике участниках

• столовая
• столоваю
• столоваи
• столоваи
• столоваей
• столоваи
• дверь
• дверь
• дверя
• дверю
• дверем
• двере
Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension 45

Genitive plural
ei instead of of
Female, soft

тетрадь -> терадей

Masculine, soft

портфель -> портфелей

Words ending in ьЯ

семья -> семей

я врач -> врачей


ш карандаш -> карандашей
щ товарищ -> товарищей
ж нож -> ножей

родители -> родителей


дети -> детей
соседи -> соседей

Russian/Grammar/Adjectives
The endings of adjectives change according to the gender and the case of the nouns that the adjective modifies. The
rule to remember is that Russian adjectives agree with nouns in gender, case, and number. You could simpify that
rule if you said that plural is a fourth gender, in which case the rule would be that Russian adjectives agree with
nouns in gender and case.

Nominative case adjectives


Dictionaries show adjectives in their form for modifying a masculine noun.

Hard endings
Adjectives modifying masculine nouns in the nominative case usually end in ый (pronounced "ee"). These are "hard
ending" adjectives. E.g., "new pencil" is новый карандаш (pronounced "no-vee karandash"). As a memory aid,
remember that masculine nouns end in a consonant or й, and the masculine ending for adjectives end in й (sorry,
you'll just have to associate "consonant" with ы).
With feminine nouns, the adjective ends in ая. E.g., "new car" is новая машина (pronounced "no-vah-yah
masheena"). As a memory aid, remember that feminine nouns end in а or я, so put these two endings together and
you have ая.
With neuter nouns, the adjective ends in ое. E.g., "new dress" is новое платье (pronounced "no-vo-yeh plat-yeh").
As a memory aid, remember that neuter nouns end in о or е, so put these two endings together and you have ое. ("Oh
yeah, that's easy to remember!")
With plural nouns, the adjective ends in ые. E.g., "new students" is новые студенты (pronounced "no-vih-yeh
studentih"). As a memory aid, think of plural as one masculine and one neuter object. Take the first letter from the
masculine ending (ы) and the second letter from the neuter ending (е) and you get ые.
Russian/Grammar/Adjectives 46

Soft endings
If an masculine adjective doesn't end in ый, then it is a "soft ending" adjective. When such an adjective modifies a
masculine noun, the adjective ends in ий. An example is синий (dark blue).
When such an adjective modifies a feminine noun, the adjective ends in яя. An example is синяя (dark blue).
When such an adjective modifies a neuter noun, the adjective ends in ее. An example is синее (dark blue).
When such an adjective modifies a plural noun, the adjective ends in ие (maintaining the memory aid that you take a
masculine object and a neuter object to get two objects). An example is синие (dark blue).

5- and 7-letter spelling rules


Recall that with plurals, after the letters г, ж, к, х, ч, ш, and щ, you use и, not ы. This 7-letter spelling rule also
applies to adjectives. As a memory aid, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.
The 5-letter spelling rule is that after the letters ж, ц, ч, ш, and щ, don't write an unstressed o, but instead write e. As
a memory aid, ц, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.

Accusative case adjectives


We can ignore adjectives modifying masculine, neuter, and plural nouns in the accusative case, because these are the
same as nominative case adjective endings (for inanimate objects), or genitive case endings (for animate objects),
For adjectives modifying feminine nouns in the accusative case, the ending is either ую (hard ending) or юю (soft
ending).

Genitive case adjectives


Adjectives modifying masculine or neuter nouns in the genitive case usually end in ого (pronounced "ovo," not
"ogo"). If the adjective has a "soft ending," or for the 5-letter spelling rule, then the ending is его (pronounced
"yehvo," not "yehgo").
Adjectives modifying feminine nouns in the genitive case usually end in ой (pronounced "oy"). If the adjective has a
"soft ending," or for the 5-letter spelling rule, then the ending is ей (pronounced "yay").
Some words drop a middle vowel. E.g., отец (father) becomes отца; ковёр (carpet) becomes ковра.
Russian/Grammar/Introduction 47

Russian/Grammar/Introduction
Are you learning Russian to "get by" on a one-week business trip to Moscow? Or do you want to learn "good
Russian"?
Russians will love you if you speak "good Russian." Educated Russians are extremely proud of their grammar skills,
and rightly so. Russian grammar is unbelievably complex. The Russian word for "good" sounds like "horror show,"
and if you want to learn "horror show Russki" (good Russian) prepare for some scary stuff!
If you learn Russian grammar, you'll see how precise a language can be, and how imprecise English is in
comparison. English is full of useless little words such as "a," "an," "the," "this," "that," etc. These words add no
meaning to sentences, they just make sentences "sound right." English also conveys meaning via word order and
context. Russian words communicate meaning so clearly that the order of the words can be mixed up. For example,
in Russian you can say "Bob eats lunch" or "Lunch eats Bob" and there's no doubt that Bob is doing the eating.
Pronouns ("I," "you," "they," etc.) are built into verbs, so Russians often drop pronouns without losing clarity. Thus
Russian sentences are typically shorter and less ambiguous than English. The price you pay for this efficient, precise
language is far more demanding grammar.
But to "get by" you need only basic grammar, but not the byzantine grammar of "good Russian." You could treat all
nouns as if they were masculine, and all verbs as if you are the person doing the action, and Russians would usually
understand your meaning. But you should read over the many grammar rules so that you have a clue what Russians
are saying. E.g., you should be able to recognize when a Russian uses the prepositional case, even if you only use the
nominative case.
Native speakers learn grammar as children by listening to adults talk, and by being corrected by their parents. A
child who reads a lot and whose parents speak correctly doesn't need to learn grammar rules. As an adult learning
Russian, you'll learn best if a native Russian listens to you and corrects your mistakes. But the grammar rules will act
as shortcuts, to help you learn faster.
In learning some people are auditory learners, some are visual, and some are movement learners. (See ISBN
1573240648 "The Open Mind" by Dawna Markova, for more about this.) But all three learning styles are needed for
organizing and committing to long-term memory. You may prefer to hear spoken Russian, or see written Russian, or
(for movement learners) write a Russian word and then write how it sounds in English. You may need to do an
activity, such as cooking dinner, to pay attention. But all of us need to do all of these things to learn well.
Russian/Grammar/Articles 48

Russian/Grammar/Articles
Russian lacks the articles "a", "an" and "the". English uses the definite article "the" to indicate a specific place, thing,
etc.: "I ate the orange" suggests there was only one orange, or it was in some way special. English uses the indefinite
articles "a" and "an" to indicate that the following noun is not specific, e.g., "I ate an orange" suggests there were
several oranges. Note that English only uses indefinite articles for singular nouns: "I ate oranges" (plural) lacks an
article.
Russian also lacks the present-tense forms of the verb "to be" ("am", "are" and "is").
Thus the English four-word sentence "I am a student" is just two words in Russian: "Я студент." In written Russian,
when a sentence has two nouns in a row, a — is written between the nouns to indicate the verb "to be." E.g., "Tanya is
a student" translates to "Таня — студент."

Russian/Grammar/Gender
Gender
Russian nouns are either masculine, feminine, or neuter. You can usually identify a noun's gender by its ending:
Masculine nouns end in a consonant. Remember that й is a consonant.
Feminine nouns end in а or я.
Neuter nouns end in о or е.
Nouns ending in ь can be masculine or feminine. There's no rule, you just have to memorize the gender of these
words.

Plural
Plural nouns can be treated as a fourth gender.
Masculine and feminine nouns generally add ы (if masculine) or change а to ы (if feminine). Those are called the
"hard endings." Words with "soft endings" й (masculine), я (feminine), and ь (masculine or feminine) add и (if
masculine) or change я to и (if feminine).
Neuter nouns change о to а ("hard ending"), and change е to я ("soft ending").

7-Letter Spelling Rule


However, г, ж, к, х, ч, ш, and щ, you use и, not ы. This 7-letter spelling rule also applies to adjectives. As a memory
aid, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet, and г, к, and х are pronounced at the back of the mouth.

Exceptional plurals
Some masculine nouns drop the last vowel before adding ы or и. E.g., подарок (present or gift) becomes подарки.
Some masculine nouns add stressed a for plural. E.g., дом (house) becomes дома́ (houses).
Words of foreign origin ending in o, и, or у don't change between singular and plural. E.g., радио means "radio" or
"radios." Note that foreign nouns with these endings also don't change in prepositional case (e.g., Colorado,
Kentucky, and Peru).
Russian/Grammar/Pronouns 49

Russian/Grammar/Pronouns
Personal Pronouns
Use nominative case pronouns for the subject of the sentence.

English Nominative Prepositional Genitive

who кто ("kto") у кого ("oo kovo")

I Я ("yah") oбо мне ("obo mnyeh") у меня ("oo


myehnyah")

you (informal) ты ("tee") о тебе ("o tyehbyeh") у тебя ("oo tyehbyah")

he он ("on") о нём ("o nyom") у него ("oo nyeh-vo")

she она ("ona") о ней ("o nyay") у неё ("oo nyeh-yo")

we мы ("mee") о нас ("o nas") у нас ("oo nas")

you (formal and plural) вы ("vee") о вас ("o vas") у вас ("oo vas")

they они о них ("o neekh") у них ("oo neekh")


("onee")

Formal and Informal


Russians differentiate between formal and informal social relationships. Two words translate to "you": Вы
(pronounced "vee" but make it short, don't draw out the vowel) is how you say "you" to a teacher, police officer, etc.
Ты (pronounced "tee") is how you say "you" to a friend or family member. Russians are more formal than
Americans, so if in doubt use Вы!
Вы is also "you plural" or "y'all. In other words, you address a superior person as if he or she were several people.
The greeting здравствуйте (formal) and здравствуй (informal) has two forms.
The word "your" also comes in formal and informal: вас (formal) and тебя (informal).
Russian/Grammar/Cases 50

Russian/Grammar/Cases
Russian has six cases. Cases are suffixes (word endings) that tell you the context of word. English has almost no
cases. However, sometimes we make up cases in English. For example, my friend refers to her dog as a "doggie," his
paws as "pawsies," his ears as "earsies," his bed as his "beddie," etc. So when she says, "Your earsies are filthy!" I
know that she's talking about the dog's ears, not mine.
The nominative case indicates the subject of a sentence. The other five cases indicate the object of the sentence. E.g.,
for the sentence "I washed my dog," "I" is the subject and "dog is the object. The subject and object are always nouns
or pronouns.
Cases affect nouns, adjectives modifying the nouns, and possessive pronouns ("my," "your," etc.). Going back to the
doggie example, my friend might say that her dog has "cutesy pawsies." She modifies the adjective to match the
noun. Remember that possessive pronouns, adjectives, and nouns are used together ("My stinky dog"). In contrast,
pronouns are used with verbs ("I walk ).
Adjective endings agree with the nouns they modify in gender and case. They also agree in number, but I think of
plural as a fourth gender, to make things simpler. Russian has six cases and four genders (including plural), so
adjectives have, in theory, 24 possible endings! Luckily there's overlap between the cases, so there are less than 24
actual endings for you to learn.
Signal words often precede a case.

Nominative case
Именительный падеж
The nominative case is used for a sentence's subject. In "Bob eats lunch," Bob is the subject. This is the case you find
in dictionaries.
• Nominative case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns

Genitive case
Родительный падеж
The genitive case is used for a sentence's object to indicate the following contexts:
• Negation, e.g., "I don't have a car." The genitive case is preceded by нет ("no," actually a contraction of не есть,
or "not there is").
• Numbers. E.g., "I have six chairs" is plural in English but not plural in Russian! The genitive case is preceded by
a number.
• Part of something, or "some," or "any." E.g., "My house has a red roof" ("red roof" is genitive). The genitive case
is preceded by любой (any). "Some" doesn't have a word in Russian, it's expressed by putting words into genitive
case.
• "Of," e.g., the house of the teacher ("teacher" is genitive). "Of" doesn't have a word in Russian, it's expressed by
putting words into genitive case.
This is similar to the English possessive pronouns: "He is my friend", but "His car is red", or "She is my girlfriend"
but "Her car is yellow". But the Russian genitive case is also used to indicate more than just possession.
• Genitive case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns
Russian/Grammar/Cases 51

Dative case
Дательный падеж
The Dative case is used in cases of indirect objects. As in English, sentences do not always have indirect objects.
Indirect objects indicate "to whom", or "to what" an action is done.
• Dative case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns

Accusative case
Винительный падеж
The accusative case is used for a sentence's direct object. In "Bob eats lunch," "lunch" is the direct object. In English
we use word order to indicate subject and object (subject is first, object last). In English, "Bob eats lunch" and
"Lunch eats Bob" have different meanings. But in Russian, a suffix indicates whether a word is the subject or object.
If English indicated the direct object by adding "oo," we could say "Bob eats lunchoo" or "Lunchoo eats Bob" and
either way it would clear that Bob was doing the eating.
In English, a few pronouns still have the accusative (objective) case: "Who is it?" but "Whom did you meet?",
although the latter can also be expressed with "who" instead of "whom". Also, "He met me" but "I met him" – if you
change word order here, the meaning remains the same: "Me met he" and "Him met I". The other pronouns being
"they" -> "them", "she" -> "her", "we" -> "us".
• Accusative case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns

Instrumental case
Творительный падеж
The instrumental case is used with the preposition with, such as in: I rode with Jane.
It is also used with the preposition with to indicate by what means an action was performed - such as in: I wrote with
the pen.
• Instrumental case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns

Prepositional case
Предложный падеж
The prepositional case is used for a sentence's object to indicate that a sentence's object is a location or an activity.
• Prepositional case nouns, adjectives, and personal pronouns
• Next: Nominative case
• Back to Table of Contents
Not a book title page. Please remove {{alphabetical}} from this page.
Russian/Grammar/Nominative 52

Russian/Grammar/Nominative
Nouns
The nominative case is used for a sentence's subject. In "Bob eats lunch," Bob is the subject. This is the case you find
in dictionaries.
Nominative case masculine nouns end in a consonant. Remember that й is a consonant. Some masculine nouns in the
nominative case end in ь.
Nominative case feminine nouns end in а or я. Some feminine nouns in the nominative case end in ь.
Nominative case neuter nouns end in о or е.

Plural Nouns
Nominative case plural masculine and feminine nouns with "hard endings" end in ы. For masculine nouns ending in
a consonant, add ы. For feminine nouns ending in а, replace the а with ы.
Nominative case plural masculine and feminine nouns with "soft endings" end in и. For masculine nouns ending in a
й or ь, replace that letter with и. For feminine nouns ending in я or ь, replace that letter with и.
Nominative case plural neuter nouns end in а or я. Change the о to а, or the е to я.

The 7-letter spelling rule


Now it gets complicated. After the letters к, г, х, ш, щ, ж, and ч, always add (or change a or я to) и, not ы. E.g.,
книга (book) becomes книги (books).

Exceptional plurals
Some masculine nouns drop the last vowel before adding ы or и. E.g., подарок (present or gift) becomes подарки.
Some masculine nouns add a for plural. E.g., дом (house) becomes дома (houses).
Words of foreign origin ending in o, и, or у don't change between singular and plural. E.g., радио means "radio" or
"radios." Note that foreign nouns with these endings also don't change in prepositional case (e.g., Colorado,
Kentucky, and Peru).

Adjectives
Dictionaries show adjectives in their form for modifying a nominative case masculine noun.

Hard endings
Adjectives modifying masculine nouns in the nominative case usually end in ый (pronounced "ee"). These are called
"hard ending" adjectives. E.g., "new pencil" is новый карандаш (pronounced "no-vee karandash"). As a memory
aid, remember that masculine nouns have two possible endings: any consonant, which you'll have to associate with
ы, or the consonant й. Put these two endings together and you have ый.
With feminine nouns, the adjective ends in ая. E.g., "new car" is новая машина (pronounced "no-vah-yah
masheena"). As a memory aid, remember that feminine nouns have two possible endings: а or я. Put these two
endings together and you have ая.
With neuter nouns, the adjective ends in ое. E.g., "new dress" is новое платье (pronounced "no-vo-yeh plat-yeh").
As a memory aid, remember that neuter nouns have two possible endings: о or е. Put these two endings together and
you have ое. ("Oh yeah, that's easy to remember!")
Russian/Grammar/Nominative 53

With plural nouns, the adjective ends in ые. E.g., "new students" is новые студенты (pronounced "no-vih-yeh
studentih"). As a memory aid, think of plural as one masculine and one neuter object. Take the first letter from the
masculine ending (ы) and the second letter from the neuter ending (е) and you have ые.

Soft endings
Some nominative case masculine adjectives end in ий, not ый. These are called "soft ending" adjectives. An example
is синий костюм (dark blue suit, pronounced "seenee costume").
When a "soft ending" adjective modifies a feminine noun, the adjective ends in яя. An example is синяя сумка (dark
blue purse, pronounced "seen-yah-yah soomka").
When a "soft ending" adjective modifies a neuter noun, the adjective ends in ее. An example is синее платье (dark
blue dress, pronounced "seen-yeh-yeh plat-yeh").
When such an adjective modifies a plural noun, the adjective ends in ие. This maintains the memory aid that you
take a masculine object and a neuter object to get two objects. An example is синие ботинки (dark blue shoes,
pronounced "seenee-yeh boteenkee").

5- and 7-letter spelling rules


Recall that with plurals, after the letters г, ж, к, х, ч, ш, and щ, you use и, not ы. This 7-letter spelling rule also
applies to adjectives. As a memory aid, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.
The 5-letter spelling rule is that after the letters ж, ц, ч, ш, and щ, don't write an unstressed o, but instead write e. As
a memory aid, ц, ч, ш, and щ are together in the alphabet.

Personal Pronouns
English Nominative Prepositional Genitive

what что ("shto") о чём (about what? "o chyom")

who кто ("keh-to") о ком (about who? "o kom") у кого (who has? "oo kovo")

I Я ("yah") oбо мне (about me, "o mnyeh") у меня (I have, "oo mnyah")

you (informal) ты ("tee") о тебе (about you, "o у тебя (you have, "oo
tyehbyeh") tyehbyah")

he он ("on") о нём (about him, "o nyom") у него (he has, "oo nyeh-vo")

she она ("ona") о ней (about her, "o nyay") у неё (she has, "oo nyeh-yo")

we мы ("mee") о нас (about us, "o nas") у нас (we have, "oo nas")

you (form. вы ("vee") о вас (about y'all, "o vas") у вас (you have, "oo vas")
plur.)

they они ("onee") о них (about them, "o neech") у них (they have, "oo neech")

Possessive pronouns
Russian/Grammar/Nominative 54

English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

Whose? чей ("chay") чья ("chyah") чьё ("chyo") чьи ("chee")

My мой ("moy") моя ("moyah") моё ("moyo") мои ("moee")

Your (informal) твой ("tvoy") твоя твоё ("tvoyo") твои ("tvoee")


("tvoyah")

His его его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo")


("yehvo")

Her её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo")

Our наш ("nash") наша ("nasha") наше наши ("nashee")


("nashyeh")

Your (formal or plural) ваш ("vash") ваша ("vasha") ваше ("vashyeh") ваши ("vashee")

Their их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch")

"His," "her," and "their" (его, её, ех) are the same in all genders and cases.

Memory aids
Think of Che Guevara drinking a chai to balance his chi. But then he walks away, leaving his chai on the table, and
someone asks "Whose chai is this?" A waiter responds, "It's Che's chai." "Che" (pronounced "chay") is masculine,
because Che Guevara was a man (a very masculine man, with a moustache and a motorcycle!). "Chi" (pronounced
"chee") animates many forms of life so it's plural. "Chai" is a nice warm drink your mother might make, so it's
feminine, and Russians pronounce it "chyah") (not really, "chai" in Russian means "tea"). If you just want to "get
by," say "chee" and you'll be right about 50% of the time.
Мой {"my") sounds close enough to "my" to be a cognate. It sounds vaguely like a New York Yiddish version of
"my."
Твой ("your") is confusing because it looks like ты ("you," pronounced "tee") but the former has a в and the latter
has a ы. These letters are pronounced very differently!
Remember that его ("his") is pronounced "yevo," not "yego." "Yevo" sounds more masculine "yego."
Think of a woman playing with a yo-yo. It's her yo-yo.
In Yiddish, "nosh" is a light meal or snack (it's both a noun and a verb). Think of meeting a friend to share a plate of
lox and bagels. It would be "our nosh," or in Russian "наш nosh" (pronounced "nosh nosh").
Think of opening the hood of an important Russian official's car and finding a washing machine instead of an engine.
You would ask ваша машина ("vasha masheena")? That sounds like "washing machine" but means "your car?".
If you speak German, think of их as pronounced the same as "ich" (I). If you don't speak German, think of two
women standing on one chair, while a mouse runs around the room. The women are screaming, "Eek! A mouse!"
Remember that there are two on the chair. They are screaming "Eek!"
Russian/Grammar/Nominative 55

Demonstrative Pronouns
это ("ehta") translates to "this" or "these."
Note that it starts with э ("eh"), not е ("yeh") or з (z).
When это is followed by a nominative case noun, это changes to match the gender of the noun:

English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

This этот ("etot") эта это ("eto") эти


("eta") ("etee")

For example, Этот чемодан мой ("This suitcase is mine.").


However, when a possessive pronoun is between это and the noun, the possessive pronoun changes but это doesn't
change. For example, Это мой чемодан ("This is my suitcase").
Also note that for neuter nouns, changing word order doesn't change это.

Demonstrative Adjectives
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

That тот ("tot") та ("ta") то ("to") те


("tyeh")

• Next: Accusative case


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Russian/Grammar/Genitive case 56

Russian/Grammar/Genitive case
Nouns
Genitive case masculine and neuter nouns usually end in а. For masculine nouns ending in a consonant, add а at the
end. E.g., стол (table) becomes стола. For masculine nouns ending in й, change й to я. For neuter nouns, change the
о or е to а.
Genitive case feminine nouns usually change the а ending to ы. E.g., лампа (lamp) becomes лампы. The exceptions
are if the word ends in я or ь, or for the 7-letter spelling rule, change я or ь to и.

Signal words
These words precede the genitive case:
• of
• some
• no, or other negation words
• any
• numbers
• comparison, e.g., "older"

Genitive case plural nouns


Genitive case plural nouns drop the vowel at the end. Thus feminine nouns drop the а and neuter nouns drop the о or
е. Masculine nouns stay as they are (ending in a consonant). "Soft ending" feminine words change the я to ь (which
sounds like you dropped the vowel ending).

Adjectives
Masculine and neuter adjectives form the genitive case the same way: change the ending to ого. This is pronounced
"ovo" (because it sounds more masculine than "ogo"!).
The exceptions are masculine words ending in й or ь, or for the 5-letter spelling rule with the ending unstressed,
change to его (pronounced "yehvo").
Feminine adjectives change the ending to ой (rhymes with "boy"). The exceptions are feminine words ending in й or
ь, or for the 5-letter spelling rule with the ending unstressed, change to ей (pronounced "yay").

Personal Pronouns
Genitive case is also used for saying you have something, or you don't have something. To say that you have
something, start with У (means "by" or "next to"). Then change the pronoun (я, ты, вы, etc.) according to the table.
In other words, Russians don't say "Ivan has a dacha," but rather say "By Ivan has dacha."
Russian/Grammar/Genitive case 57

English Nominative Prepositional Genitive

what что ("shto") о чём (about what? "o chyom")

who кто ("keh-to") о ком (about who? "o kom") у кого (who has? "oo kovo")

I Я ("yah") oбо мне (about me, "o mnyeh") у меня (I have, "oo mnyah")

you (informal) ты ("tee") о тебе (about you, "o у тебя (you have, "oo
tyehbyeh") tyehbyah")

he он ("on") о нём (about him, "o nyom") у него (he has, "oo nyeh-vo")

she она ("ona") о ней (about her, "o nyay") у неё (she has, "oo nyeh-yo")

we мы ("mee") о нас (about us, "o nas") у нас (we have, "oo nas")

you (form. вы ("vee") о вас (about y'all, "o vas") у вас (you have, "oo vas")
plur.)

they они ("onee") о них (about them, "o neech") у них (they have, "oo neech")

Possessive Pronouns
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

Whose? чьего ("che-yevo") чьей ("che-yay") чьего ("che-yevo")

My моего ("mo-yevo") моей ("mo-yay") моего ("mo-yevo")

Your (informal) твоего ("tvo-yevo") твоей ("tvo-yay") твоего ("tvo-yevo")

His его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его


("yehvo")

Her её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo")

Our нашего ("nashevo") нашей ("nashay") нашего ("nashevo")

Your (formal or plural) вашего ("vashevo") вашей ("vashay") вашего ("vashevo")

Their их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch")

The masculine and neuter forms of genitive case possessive pronouns are the same.
"His," "her," and "their" (его, её, ех) are the same in all genders and cases.

Demonstrative Pronouns
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

This этого этей этого


("etovo") ("et-yay") ("etovo")

Demonstrative Adjectives
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

That того ("tovo") той ("toy") того ("tovo") тех ("tyehch")


Russian/Grammar/Genitive case 58

Some numbers
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

One одного ("odnovo") одной ("odnoy") одного ("odnovo")

Third третьего ("tret-yevo") третьей третьего ("tret-yevo")


("tret-yay")

Examples of genitive case


"Brother of my wife" брат моей жены брат is nominative моей жены is genitive
"Wife of my brother" жена моего брата жена is nominative моего брата is genitive
"Roof of my house" крыша моего дома крыша is nominative моего дома is genitive
"He drank some water" Он выпил воды выпил is past tense воды is genitive Note that "some" is dropped because
the genitive case indicates that he drank only part of the water.
"My brother is older than your sister" Мой брат старше твоей сестры
• Next: Dative case
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Russian/Grammar/Dative case
Nouns
The dative case is the case of indirect object — that is, an object that the verb has some sort of indirect effect upon.
Examples: I gave the letter to my father. I did it for myself.

Demonstrative Adjectives
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

That тому ("tomoo") той ("toy") тому ("tomoo") тем ("tyem")

• Next: Instrumental case


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Russian/Grammar/Accusative case 59

Russian/Grammar/Accusative case
Nouns
Accusative case masculine, neuter, and plural nouns follow the same pattern. For inanimate objects, accusative case
is the same as nominative case. For animate objects, accusative case is the same as genitive case. (There are no
neuter animate objects.)
Accusative case feminine nouns change their а or я ending to у or ю, respectively. E.g., "car" is машина
(pronounced "masheena") in nominative case, and машину (pronounced "masheenoo") is accusative case.
For example, picture a mother with a little boy named Бобчик (Bobchik). We would say Мама любит Бобчика
("Mama loves Bobchik," genitive case) and Бобчик любит маму ("Bobchik loves Mama," accusative case).

Adjectives
Adjectives modifying accusative case masculine and neuter nouns are the same as nominative case (or genitive case
for animate objects).
Adjectives modifying accusative case feminine nouns end in ую, e.g., новую (new, "nov-oo-you").

Possessive pronouns
Masculine, neuter, and plural accusative case possessive pronouns are the same as nominative case. Only the
feminine case changes.

English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

Whose? чей ("chay") чью ("chyou") чьё ("chyo") чьи ("chee")

My мой ("moy") мою ("moyou") моё ("moyo") мои ("moee")

Your (informal) твой ("tvoy") твою ("tvoyou") твоё ("tvoyo") твои ("tvoee")

His его его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo")


("yehvo")

Her её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo")

Our наш ("nash") нашу ("nashoo") наше наши ("nashee")


("nashyeh")

Your (formal or plural) ваш ("vash") вашу ("vashoo") ваше ("vashyeh") ваши ("vashee")

Their их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch")

"His," "her," and "their" (его, её, ех) are the same in all genders and cases.
• Next: Prepositional case
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Russian/Grammar/Instrumental case 60

Russian/Grammar/Instrumental case
Nouns

Signal words
The Instrumental case is not always preceded by a preposition.
However, there are some prepositions that can be followed by the instrumental case. One of them is the preposition
с, which means with.

Demonstrative Adjectives
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

That тем ("tyem") той ("toy") тем ("tyem") теми ("tyemee")

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Russian/Grammar/Prepositional case
Nouns
The prepositional case is used only for the object of a sentence. It indicates that a sentence's object is a location or an
activity.
In general, you add е (pronounced "yeh") to end of a noun. E.g., "I live in Michigan" becomes "I live in
Michiganyeh."
If the noun ends in й, а, or я, replace that letter with е. E.g., "She teaches in Minnesota" becomes "She teaches in
Minnesotyeh."
Exceptions:
• Never write ие, instead write ии (Russians pronounce both, like "ee-ee").
• The other exception is foreign nouns ending in о, и, or у. These look the same as the nominative case. E.g.,
Colorado, Kentucky, and Peru don't change.

Plural nouns
Plural nouns in the prepositional case usually end in ах (pronounced "ach"). The ending is ях (pronounced ("yach")
for soft-ending (й or ь) nouns.

Signal words
The prepositional case is always preceded by one of four Russian words, which translate into two English words:
• "In" translates to в (pronounced "veh" or pronounced with the next word if it starts with a vowel, e.g., "in Atlanta"
would be "vatlanta") if the location is static. "In" translates to на (pronounced "na") for activities, or a location
where an activity is done (for example, the ballet).
• "About" translated to о (pronounced "oh"), or, if the following word starts with a vowel, об (pronounced "ob").
Russian/Grammar/Prepositional case 61

Куда vs. где


Куда asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.] going?" куда asks about moving objects. It's pronounced "kooda."
Где asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.]?" где asks about static objects. It's pronounced "g' dyeh."
Statements that could answer the question куда are in the accusative case. E.g., "We're driving to St. Petersburg,
Florida" would be in the accusative case, if you said it in Russian.
Statements that could answer the question где are in the prepositional case. E.g., "We live in Moscow, Idaho" would
be in the prepositional case.
This is easy to remember because the vowels in Куда are у and а—nouns that end in а (feminine nouns) change to у in
the accusative case. The vowel in где is е, the letter you add to end nouns in the prepositional case.

Adjectives
Adjectives modifying prepositional case masculine and neuter nouns usually end in ом. For adjectives with "soft
endings" (й or ь) or for the 5-letter spelling rule, the ending is ем.
Adjectives modifying prepositional case feminine nouns usually end in ой (pronounced "oy"). For adjectives with
"soft endings" (й or ь) or for the 5-letter spelling rule, the ending is ей (pronounced ("yay").
Adjectives modifying prepositional case plural nouns usually end in ых (pronounced "ihch"). For adjectives with
"soft endings" (й or ь) or for the 7-letter spelling rule, the ending is их (pronounced ("eehch"). As a memory aid,
remember ах ых as the endings for prepositional case adjectives and nouns.

Personal Pronouns
Я читаю о них. "I read about them." Prepositional case personal pronouns (and question words) are always preceded
by о (about). In other

English Nominative Prepositional Genitive

what что ("shto") о чём (about what? "o chyom")

who кто ("keh-to") о ком (about who? "o kom") у кого (who has? "oo kovo")

I Я ("yah") oбо мне (about me, "o mnyeh") у меня (I have, "oo mnyah")

you (informal) ты ("tee") о тебе (about you, "o у тебя (you have, "oo
tyehbyeh") tyehbyah")

he он ("on") о нём (about him, "o nyom") у него (he has, "oo nyeh-vo")

she она ("ona") о ней (about her, "o nyay") у неё (she has, "oo nyeh-yo")

we мы ("mee") о нас (about us, "o nas") у нас (we have, "oo nas")

you (form. вы ("vee") о вас (about y'all, "o vas") у вас (you have, "oo vas")
plur.)

they они ("onee") о них (about them, "o neech") у них (they have, "oo neech")

Possessive Pronouns
Russian/Grammar/Prepositional case 62

English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

Whose? чьём ("che-yom") чьей ("che-yay") чьём ("che-yom") чьих ("che-eehch")

My моём ("mo-yom") моей ("mo-yay") моём("mo-yom") моих ("mo-eehch")

Your (informal) твоём ("tvo-yom") твоей ("tvo-yay") твоём ("tvo-yom") твоих ("tvo-eehch")

His его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo") его ("yehvo")

Her её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo") её ("yeh-yo")

Our нашем ("nash-em") нашей ("nash-ay") (ш is always нашем ("nash-em") наших ("nash-eehch")
HARD)

Your (form. plur.) вашем ("vash-em") вашей ("vash-yay") вашем ваших ("vash-eehch")
("vash-yem")

Their их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch") их ("eehch")

"His," "her," and "their" (его, её, ех) are the same in all genders and cases.

Demonstrative Pronouns
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

This этом ("etom") этой этом ("etom") этих


("etoy") ("et-eehch")

Demonstrative Adjectives
English Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural

That том той ("toy") том тех ("tyehch")


("tom") ("tom")

• Next: Genitive case


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Russian/Grammar/Noun cases 63

Russian/Grammar/Noun cases
Russian has six cases. Cases are suffixes (word endings) that tell you the context of word. English has almost no
cases. However, sometimes we make up cases in English. For example, my friend refers to her dog as a "doggie," his
paws as "pawsies," his ears as "earsies," his bed as his "beddie," etc. So when she says, "Those earsies are filthy!" I
know that she means the dog's ears, not mine.

Nominative case nouns


The nominative case is used for a sentence's subject. In "Bob eats lunch," Bob is the subject. This is the case you find
in dictionaries.

Accusative case nouns


The accusative case is used for a sentence's direct object. In "Bob eats lunch," "lunch" is the direct object. In English
we use word order to indicate subject and object (subject is first, object last). Thus in English, "Bob eats lunch" and
"Lunch eats Bob" have different meanings. But in Russian, a suffix indicates whether a word is the subject or object.
If English indicated the direct object by adding "oo," then we could say "Bob eats lunchoo" or "Lunchoo eats Bob"
and either way it would clear that Bob was doing the eating.
Masculine, neuter, and plural follow the same pattern. For inanimate objects, accusative case is the same as
nominative case. For animate objects, accusative case is the same as genitive case. (There are no neuter animate
objects.)
Feminine accusative nouns change their а or я ending to у or ю, respectively. E.g., "car" is машина (pronounced
"masheena") in nominative case, and машину (pronounced "masheenoo")in the accusative case.
For example, picture a mother with a little boy named Бобчик (Bobchik). We would say Мама любит Бобчика
("Mama loves Bobchik," genitive case) and Бобчик любит маму ("Bobchik loves Mama," accustaive case).

Prepositional case nouns


The prepositional case indicates that a sentence's object is a location. In general, you add е (prounced "yeh") to end
of a noun. E.g., "I live in Michigan" becomes "I live in Michiganyeh." If the word ends in й, а, or я, replace that
letter with u or yu. E.g., "She is going to Minnesota" becomes "She is going to Minnesotu."
There are two exceptions to the е ending. Never write ие, instead write ии (Russians pronounce both, like "ee-ee").
The other exception is foreign nouns ending in о, и, or у. These look the same as the nominative case. E.g.,
Colorado, Kentucky, and Peru don't change.
Nouns in the prepositional case are always preceded by "in" or "about." Each word comes in two versions. If "in" is
an activity, or a place where an activity is done (for example, the ballet) use на (pronounced "na"). For places
unrelated to activities, use в (pronounced "veh" or pronounced with the next word if it starts with a vowel, e.g., "in
Atlanta" would be "vatlanta").
"About" is о, or, if the following word starts with a vowel, об.
Russian/Grammar/Noun cases 64

Куда vs. где


Куда asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.] going?" куда asks about moving objects. It's pronounced "kooda," which
sounds like a form of head lice.
Где asks "where are [you/he/she/etc.]?" где asks about static objects. It's pronounced "gde," like Australians saying
"G'day!"
Statements that could answer the question куда are in the accusative case. E.g., "We're driving to St. Petersburg,
Florida" would be in the accusative case, if you said it in Russian.
Statements that could answer the question где are in the prepositional case. E.g., "We live in Moscow, Idaho" would
be in the prepositional case.
This is easy to remember because the vowels in Куда are у and а—nouns that end in а (feminine nouns) change to у in
the accusative case. The vowel in где is е, the letter you add to end nouns in the prepositional case.

Prepositional case plural


There is no plural case for nouns in the prepositional case. E.g., you can only live in one Michigan.

Genitive case nouns


The genitive case is used with:
• Negation.
• Possession.
• Numbers. E.g., "I have six chairs" is plural in English but not plural in Russian!
• Part of something, or "some," or "any."
• "Of," e.g., the house of the teacher ("teacher" is genitive).
Masculine and neuter nouns form the genitive case the same way: add а at the end. E.g., стол (table) becomes стола.
The exceptions are masculine words ending in й or ь add я. if the word ends in a vowel, drop the vowel then add a.
Feminine nouns form the genitive case by dropping the а and add ы. E.g., лампа (lamp) becomes лампы. The
exceptions are if the word ends in я or ь, or for the 7-letter spelling rule, add и.

Genitive case plural nouns


Plural nouns form the genitive case by dropping the vowel at the end. Thus feminine nouns drop the а and neuter
nouns drop the о. Masculine nouns stay as they are (ending in a consonant). "Soft ending" feminine words change
the я to ь (which sounds like you dropped the vowel ending).

Instrumental case nouns


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Russian/Grammar/Past tense 65

Russian/Grammar/Past tense
Normal Conjugation
читать (to read) is the verb for this example. Тake away the -ть ending and add:
Masculine: л
Feminine: ла
Neuter: ло
Plural: ли
Он читал книгу.
He read the book.
Она читала книгу.
She read the book.
Чикаго был большой.
Chicago was big.
Они читали книгу.
They read the book.
The endings do not change, whether the verb is perfective of imperfective, or whether the verb has first or second
conjugation.

Irregulars
The irregulars include идти, а verb of motion.
идти (to go by walking, perfective)
Masculine: шёл
Feminine: шла
Neuter: шло
Plural: шли

Irregulars
For intransitive verbs the infinitive ending of a verb is -ся, and conjugated like reflexives. То conjugate in the past
tense, the -ться ending is removed and replaced with л, ла, ло, or ли, depending upon the gender.
учиться (to learn)
Masculine: учился
Feminine: училась
Neuter: училось
Plural: учились
Russian/Grammar/Verbs 66

Russian/Grammar/Verbs
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

In English we say, "I study," "you study," "he studies," "she studies," "we study," "they study." Note that some
pronouns use "study," while other pronouns use "studies." (Strangely, what looks like a plural verb is not used with
the only two plural pronoun—"they" and "we"!) "Verb conjugation" is how verbs change with pronouns. English has
simple two-form verb conjugation ("conjugate" comes from the Latin term for "yoked together" because English
verbs come in pairs; "conjugal," meaning yoked together in marriage, comes from the same root).
Russian verbs conjugate in seven forms, for the infinitive or dictionary form, and for the six pronouns "I," "you
(informal)," "he" and "she," "we," "you (formal)," and "they."
Russian verbs conjugate in two regular patterns. In other words, some verbs are first conjugation, when others are
second conjugation.
All verbs have an infinitive form, which is listed in dictionaries. Typically this form ends in ть.
Every russian verb has two indicative forms: past form and present-future form. If you want to know the right way to
conjugate a verb in indicative, you must know it's three basic forms: muscle formof past tens, prent form to pronoun
"I" and to pronoun "HE/SHE/IT".
For example:
знать: pt знал, pr знаю, знает; to know, some man knew, I know, he/she/it knows.

First Conjugation
First-conjugation verbs that aren't in the second. They usually end in ать. These verbs conjugate by dropping the ть
and replacing it with the following endings. Читать means "to read". Жить means "to live" (usually in a place).
To construct the form for pronoun "I", we takes first person form of pr from a dictionary, to construct other personal
forms, we take the same first letter of ending, as for third person of pr in a dictionary.

English ending

infinitive ть читать ("cheetat") жить ("zheet")

I я ю or у читаю ("cheet-a-you") живу ("zheevoo")

you (informal) ты ешь or читаешь ("cheet-a-yesh") живёшь ("zheevyosh")


ёшь

he, she он/она ет or ёт читает ("cheet-a-yet") живёт ("zheevyot")

we мы ем or ём читаем ("cheet-a-yem") живём ("zheevyom")

you (formal or вы ете or ёте читаете ("cheet-a-yeht-ye") живёте (


plural) "zheevyotye")

they они ют or ут читают ("cheet-a-yout") живут ("zheevoot")


Russian/Grammar/Verbs 67

Second Conjugation
Second-conjugation verbs end in -ить. These verbs conjugate by dropping the ть and replacing it with the following
endings. Говорить means "to talk".
Exceptions:
- 7 verbs with infinitive with ending –еть have second conjuration: видеть, вертеть, обидеть, зависеть, ненавидеть,
терпеть, смотреть.
- 3 verbs with infinitive with ending –ать have second conjuration: слышать, дышать, держать
- verb гнать (It has -ать too, but here's it's a part of the root)
- 2 verbs with infinitive with ending –еть have first conjuration: брить, стелить

English ending

infinitive ть говорить ("govoreet")

I я ю говорю ("govor-you")

you (informal) ты ишь говоришь ("govor-eesh")

he, she он/она ит говорит ("govor-eet")

we мы им говорим ("govor-eem")

you (formal or вы ите говорите ("govor-eetyeh")


plural)

they они ят говорят ("govor-yat")

Note that verbs with они conjugate with ят, not ит!
Rule of thumb: In the present and futures tenses (which will be looked at later on), you can omit the pronoun as the
stem ending indicates who performs the action. i.e, you can just say "чита́ю " (I read/ I am reading) or "говори́шь"
(You speak/ you are speaking) and people will still understand you. This is not the case when talking about the past
or conditional tenses of imperfective and perfective verbs (the reasons will be explained later). The same rules also
apply in Ukrainian and Belorussian.
Russian/Grammar/What and Which 68

Russian/Grammar/What and Which


Что (pronounced "shto", not "chto") and какой (pronounced "kakoy") both mean "what". As a loose rule, какой
means "which". The correct rule is that if a noun follows "what", use какой. If no noun follows "what", use что.
As a memory aid, the following noun's gender and number change какой. Какой precedes masculine nouns, какая
precedes feminine nouns, какое precedes neuter nouns, and какие precedes plural nouns. Because что is never
followed by a noun, it only changes form in different cases.
If you just want to "get by," always use что for "what."
Not a book title page. Please remove {{alphabetical}} from this page.

Russian/Names
Russian language · Русский язык
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Russian names
Russians use three names: first name, or имя; middle or patronymic name, or отчество, which is their father's first
name plus a suffix meaning "son of" (ович) or "daughter of" (овна); and the last name or family name, or фамилия.
Women's last names add an а to the masculine form of the name.
To address a boss, a teacher, or somebody who is older or superior in rank use the person's first name and
patronymic. For instance: Василий Иванович!
To address a military or police officer use the rank and the officer's family name. For instance: Рядовой Иванов
(Private Ivanov). If you don't know the family name, use Товарищ and the rank. For instance Товарищ рядовой
(Comrade private).
To address a suspect, a former spouse, and other types that don't deserve the title Comrade, use гражданин fem.
гражданка (citizen). For instance: Гражданин, пройдёмте. (The citizen, follow me.)
The titles Господин fem. Госпожа (Mr. or Ms.) are reserved for wealthy foreigners. Ordinary citizens of foreign
countries are your comrades.
Russians use relatively few first names. There are only a dozen or so men's first names, and maybe three dozen
women's first names. Creativity in baby-naming isn't encouraged.
Russians also use diminutives or nicknames—lots! Each name typically has a version used by your best friend,
another used by your other friends, another used by your teachers, another used by your grandmother, another used
when you are scolded, etc. Some of the most common examples include Sasha for Alexander, Alyosha for Alexei,
Misha for Mikhail, Dima for Dmitri, Lena for Elena, Olya for Olga, Natasha for Natalya and Katya for Ekaterina.
Russian/Names 69

Boys first names

Russian Transcription English Equivalent/Origin/Meaning

Александр Aleksandr Alexander

Алексей Aleksey Greek origin

Андрей Andrey Andrew

Борис Boris Derived from Borislav, a pre-christian Slavic name meaning "good fighter"

Владимир Vladimir A pre-Christian Slavic name meaning "the Lord of the World"

Дмитрий Dmitry Greek origin

Николай Nikolay Nicholas

Павел Pavel Paul

Пётр Pyotr Peter

Сергей Sergey Greek origin

Girls first names

Russian Transcription English Equivalent/Origin/Meaning

Александра Aleksandra Alexandra (Be careful! It can also be the male form in genitive; it is usually known in context)

Екатерина Yekaterina Catherine

Елена Yelena Helen

Ксения Kseniya A Russian equivalent of Oksana, from Greek Xenia

Мария Mariya Mary

Наталья Natalya Natalie

Оксана Oksana The most widespread Ukrainian female name

Ольга Ol'ga A pre-Christian name derived from Varangian Helga

(Source: Wikipedia: Russian Names [1])


Back to Table of Contents

References
[1] http:/ / en. wikipedia. org/ wiki/ Russian_name
Russian/Loanwords 70

Russian/Loanwords
Russian language · Русский язык
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Warning: This might still contain errors.

Dutch

Words from Dutch


English
Dutch Russian translation

sluis шлюз lock

snoer шнур flex, cord

kabeltouw кабельтов cable

kiel киль keel

ruim трюм clear

kajuit каюта saloon

schipper шкипер captain

vlaggestok флагшток flagstaff

bootsman боцман boatswain

noord норд north (wind)

zuid зюйд south (wind)

oost ост east (wind)

west вест west (wind)

Words that entered Dutch(?)


• broek - брю́ки

English

Words that entered English


Russian/Loanwords 71

Russian English

дача Dacha

субботник Subbotnik

тройка troika

спутник sputnik

German

Words from German


German Russian English translation

Schlagbaum шлагбаум barrier

Rucksack рюкзак backpack

Perückenmacher парикмахер hairdresser (wigmaker)

Graf граф count

Words that entered German


Russian German

дача Datsche

субботник Subbotnik

French
• douche - душ
• plage - пляж
• garage - гара́ж
• bagage - бага́ж
• mirage - мира́ж
• virage - вира́ж
• cauchemar - кошма́р
• couchette - куше́тка
• coupé - купе́
• ensemble - анса́мбль (meaning "a band", not "together")
• chance - шанс
• avant-scène - авансце́на
• avant-garde - аванга́рд
• restaurant - рестора́н
• café - каф́е (a café, not coffee; read: каф́э)
• meuble - ме́бель
• trottoir - тротуар
Russian/Loanwords 72

Words that entered French


• bistro - бы́стро

Italian

Words from Italian


• tomato - pomodoro - помидо́р

Miscellaneous

Words that are very similar in Russian and other Indoeuropean languages
• mother - moeder (Dutch) - mutter (German) - mater (Latin) - мать
• daughter - dochter (Dutch) - дочь
• son - сын
• brother - брат
• sister - сестр́а
• my/mine - мой/моя́/моё́/мои́
• the sun - со́лнце (read: со́нцэ)
• house - domus (Latin) - дом
• cold - хо́лодно
• door - deur (Dutch) - дверь
• water - вода́
• love - любо́вь (noun), люби́ть (verb)
• нос - nose

To be classified
• chair/stool - stoel (Dutch) - Stuhl (German) - стул
• sport - спорт
• Saturday - zaterdag/sabbat (Dutch) - sabbath - суббо́та
Russian/Cursive 73

Russian/Cursive
Russian language · Русский язык
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Russian cursive (Русский курсив, Russkiy kursiv) is a basic part of


any language study. Because most written Russian is cursive, learning
cursive is fundamental to understanding other Russians.
On the whole, writing cursive is very similar to those familiar with
English cursive, but this material will start from the most elementary
level of Russian cursive.
The samples of writing of russian cursive are shown on the following
picture. The letters "ъ" and "ь" can't be capital. Russian words never
begin with "ы", therefore it is never capitalized.
Some people write "т" like it looks on typographic fonts (not like
english "m"). Some people have a different type of writing capital "П"
and "Т" (Lenin was one of them - look at the "Т" in "Т-щи"). Some
people (if they write "т" like in this example) put a little lines over "т"
and under "ш"? to make this letters more different.

An example

Basic information
• Cursive is a style of writing in which most if not all letters in one word are connected by ancillary serifs. With
this method, a single word can usually be written in one stroke.
• Russian culture highly regards cursive, similar to the way Chinese culture exalts good calligraphy.
Russian/Prepositions 74

Russian/Prepositions
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Prepositions

Accusative Dative
• про - on the topic of • к or ко - to, towards
• сквозь • благодаря - thanks to
• через - in, after, by

Instrumental
Genitive
• над - on top of
• без - without • перед - in front of
• вне - outside of • между - in between
• вместо - instead of • c - with
• вокруг, около - around
• до - until
Prepositional
• для - for
• из - of, outside of • при - in times of, in the presence of
• из-за - from behind • о or об - on the topic of
• из-под - from below • на, в - in and on
• кроме - except (for)
• мимо - past (movement)
• от - off, from
• после - after
• у - at, close to
• среди - among
много+Gpl несколько+Gpl мало+ Gpl

Prepositions with 2 cases


Like in German, some prepositions can have 2 cases. The accusative (again, like in German) and the genitive cases
are used to express movement: accusative pertains to destination, while genitive indicates the source of movement.
The instrumental and the Prepositional are used to express staticness.

Accusative and Prepositional


• в or во - in, inside of
• на - on, on top of
Russian/Prepositions 75

Accusative and instrumental


• за - behind, for
• под - under

Genitive and instrumental


• с - of (G), with (I)

Examples
Accusative:
Книга упала на пол.
The book fell on the floor.
За Родину!
For the Motherland!
Genitive:
Четыре стула стоят вокруг стола.
Four chairs are standing around the table.
Диван стоит у стены.
The couch is standing against the wall.
Он выходит из университéта.
He's coming out of the university.
Bозвращáюсь с рабóты.
I'm coming back from work.
Dative:
Ваза пододвинута к краю стола.
The vase is moved towards the edge of the table.
Идý к роди́телям.
I'm going to my parents'.
Instrumental:
Лампа висит под потолком.
The lamp hangs under the ceiling.
Игорь идёт с другом.
Igor walks with a friend.
Он стоит за дверью.
He's standing behind the door.
Prepositional:
Стол и стулья стоят в центре комнаты.
The table and the chairs are in the middle of the room.
Ваза стоит на столе.
The vase stands on the table.
Книга и вещи лежат на столе.
Russian/Prepositions 76

The book and the things are lying on the table.


Телевизор стоит на столике.
The television is on the small table.
Картина висит на стене.
The painting hangs on the wall.
Note: using the preposition "в/во" when saying you're in a place, or going to a place, works in the majority of cases;
however, some places require you to use "на" instead of "в/во".
For example:
Pабóтаю в университéте.
I work at the university.
but:
Pабóтаю на факультéте (чего-нибудь).
I work at the faculty (of something).
Similarly:
Идý в бюро.
I'm going to the office.
but:
Идý на работу.
I'm going to work.
And more. There is a limited number of those, but the use of "на" over that of "в/во" is mandatory in these cases.
Russian/Verbal Aspect 77

Russian/Verbal Aspect
Russian language · Русский язык
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At the time of creation, this document will be left in great need of amplification. This, nevertheless, shall be a
start.

Introduction to Aspect
For most native speakers of English (and indeed of many other languages) one of the most inherently difficult tasks
in learning Russian is learning to cope with the complexity of Russian verbs. Unlike Spanish and German, for
instance, where the great difficulty lies in memorizing forms of verbs (both German and Spanish have many more
verbal forms than does the Russian system), the difficulty in Russian is in coming to understand a property inherent
to each verb: aspect.
Every Russian verb is either perfective or imperfective in aspect. In imprecise terms, the division is as follows:
perfective aspect verbs describe a complete action, while imperfective verbs describe a process or a state. Rather
than expound more theory here, we shall procede by considering an example.
Let us take the ideas "to speak", and "to do". First, we shall consider an example with imperfective verbs.
Мишa, что ты делал после обеда? Misha, what were you doing after lunch?
Я говорил с Катей. I was talking to Katya.
Note that the verbs here describe a process. It is also possible to consider this as a complete action, but as written the
concern is not with whether the action is complete, but simply what was happening. The first speaker wondered what
Misha was doing after lunch. The first speaker could be Misha's boss, wondering why he was not at his desk.
Миша, что ты сделал после обеда? Misha, what did you do after lunch?
Я сказал маме об отметках. I told mom about my grades.
In this example, the outcome of the complete action is of importance. The first speaker could be Misha's father,
wondering why his mother was so upset when he arrived home from work.

Verbal "Pairs" (Aspectual pairs)


So, each Russian verb is either imperfective or perfective in aspect, and you should now have some idea about what
this means. So for each idea (as with "to do" and "to speak", above) is there a choice between an imperfective and a
perfective verb? This is not an easy question to answer outright. It is often taught to beginning students of Russian
that the answer is a definitive "yes". Делать/сделать means "to do" or "to make", and говорить/сказать means "to
speak", "to say", or "to tell". This is an especially convenient answer to the question at hand because many verbs
appear to come in such pairs, with the perfective variant appearing with a prefix. Examples are делать/сделать (to
do, to have done), смотреть/посмотреть (to watch, to watch completely), читать/прочитать (to read, to read
completely). Sometimes the prefix will even be indicated in parentheses to indicate the pair of verbs together, as:
(с)делать, (по)смотреть, (про)читать. The problem with this model is that many ideas correspond to many different
verbs, some perfective and some imperfective, with different shades of meaning. For example, читать, прочитать,
Russian/Verbal Aspect 78

and почитать all mean "to read". The former is imperfective, and means quite simply "to read". The second verb
shown, прочитать, which is often given as the perfective "partner" of читать, means to read an entire work. The last
verb here, почитать, is also perfective. Being perfective, it also describes a complete action. It means "to read for
some period of time" or "to read for a while".
Some verbs are not governed by a simple affixal relationship, for example:
говорить (impf.), сказать (pf.) - to say, speak, tell брать (impf.), взять (pf.) - to take, get, obtain
To further complicate matters, these prefixes, which frequently turn an imperfective (process) verb into a perfective
(complete action) verb very often add some shade of meaning beyond the difference in aspect. For example, adding
the prefix раз to the verb говорить changes the meaning from "to speak" to "to converse". Разговорить is the
perfective verb meaning "to converse" or "to chat". It would be nice, though, it seems, to have a verb meaning "to
converse" without talking about a complete action. In fact there is such a verb, derived from разговорить:
разговаривать. Another example derived from the same root is the "pair" договориться (perfective) and
договариваться (imperfective) meaning "to agree". Infixes also affect the aspect of a verb, e.g., вставать
(imperfective) and встать (perfective), meaning to rise (from bed).
Furthermore there are some verbs which exist only in one aspect or the other without any semblance of a so-called
"aspectual partner", although these are rather rare. Жить and быть are two examples.
In short, Russian verbs do not come in tidy imperfective/perfective pairs, but for any verb you encounter, there is
probably a counterpart with related meaning of opposite aspect. A dictionary should help you find an opposite-aspect
verb if you don't know one. However, when first learning Russian, it is best to commit the more unusual aspectual
pairs to memory first, as they will be the most useful.

Why must I endure this?


In short, all of this is to say that there are two types of verbs in Russian, perfective verbs, and imperfective verbs.
Perfective verbs carry the meaning of complete action, while imperfective verbs carry the meaning of a process or
state. When choosing a verb to utter, it is important to choose a verb of the proper aspect.
Beyond the semantic difference, there is a formal difference that you will see when studying verb conjugation and
tense formation. Namely, while perfective and imperfective verbs can appear in the past or in the future, only
imperfective verbs can appear in the present tense. What happens if you try to make a present-tense form of a
perfective verb? You get a perfective verb with future meaning. Imperfective verbs are put into the future tense by
another mechanism (in fact, by a mechanism much more like that used in English -- namely, the use of a helping
verb). This may seem like a rather odd way to handle things, and perhaps it is. In any case, Russians don't seem to
mind. The reason, for those of us who like to believe there are reasons for these things, is that a complete action
cannot occur "now". At the instant we call "now", a complete action must either have already been completed, or
remain to be completed. "Now" can only point to the process of an action.

In conclusion
Verbal aspect is a very important feature of Russian, and should be considered (consciously or otherwise) whenever
a Russian verb is encountered or is to be rendered. If you consider aspect each time you encounter a verb, it won't
take long to get a good feel for aspect. As for producing Russian in writing or in speech, this is one more thing to
think about before you open the gates.
See also: the Wikipedia article about grammatical aspect
Russian/False Friends 79

Russian/False Friends
Russian language · Русский язык
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Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
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False Friends
False Friends is a linguistics term given to words or letters that have similar appearance, but are pronounced
differently. There are 9 such false friends between Russian and English: В, Ё, Н, Р, C', У and Х.

Вв

Russian name: вэ, Romanization: ve (veh) Audio:


This letter looks like a large and small uppercase English B, but represents the same sound as English V. This letter
is often devoiced at the end of words or before voiceless consonants, meaning that it's pronounced like an F instead.
Example: Вы (VY) is pronounced VYH. It means "you (plural)". Автор (AFtor) is pronounced AFF-tor, meaning
"author".

Ёё

ё, yo
This letter represents the sound Yoh, like the greeting Yo without the w-glide at the end. It is always stressed in
Russian words. Keep in mind that Russians often write this letter as Е in informal text.
Example: Ёлка (YOLka), pronounced YOLL-kah, means "Christmas tree".

Нн

ен, en
Though it looks like an uppercase English H, it represents the same sound as the English letter N.
Example: Нос (NOS), is Russian for "nose".

Рр

эр, er
Don't mistake this for the English letter P. This letter is usually transliterated with R, but it's not pronounced like the
English R. Instead, it's trilled as in Spanish.
Example: Рок (ROK) is the genre "rock" in Russian.

Сс

эс, es
The English letter C has various pronounciations, but the Russian letter С is always like the English S.
Example: Суп (SUP), means "soup".

Уу
Russian/False Friends 80

у, u
This letter is transliterated with U and represents the oo sound in English tool. Stressed У is only a bit longer than the
unstressed counterpart; the pronunciation is the same otherwise.
Example: Утра (Utra), meaning "morning".

Хх

ха, kha or ha
This sound doesn't exist in English and is usually transliterated using two letters: Kh. It's pronounced as a voiceless
velar fricative, meaning that you should put your tongue in position to pronounce a K, but instead make a breathy,
voiceless H-sound with the tongue in the same position.
Example: Хвост (KHVOST) means "tail".

Russian/Interrogative Pronouns
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кто - who
что - what
где - where
куда - to where
откуда - from where
как - how
когда - when

Examples
Что это?
What is this?
Кто они?
Who are they?
Куда идёт Иван?
Where is Ivan going?
Откуда вы?
Where are you from?
Когда Павел и Марина ездят к родителям?
When are Pavel and Marina going to (their) parents?
Где их родители жили раньше?
Russian/Interrogative Pronouns 81

Where did their parents live before?


В каком доме они жили раньше?
In what kind of house did they live before?

Russian/Personal Pronouns
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Eng N A G P D I

I, me я меня меня мне мне мной

You (s, ты тебя тебя тебе тебе тобой


inf)

He, him, it он/оно (н)его (н)его нём (н)ему (н)им

She, her, it она (н)её (н)её ней (н)ей (н)ей

We/us мы нас нас нас нам нами

You (pl, f) вы вас вас вас вам вами

They, them они (н)их (н)их них (н)им (н)ими


Russian/Possessive Pronouns 82

Russian/Possessive Pronouns
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

possessor

singular plural

1 (я) 2 (ты) 3m (он) 3f (она́) 1 (мы) 2 (вы) 3 (они́)

nom мой твой его́ её наш ваш их


моя́ твоя́ на́ша ва́ша
моё твоё на́ше ва́ше
мои́ твои́ на́ши ва́ши

acc
inan anim inan anim inan anim inan anim

мой моего́ твой твоего́ наш на́шего ваш ва́шего

мою́ твою́ на́шу ва́шу

моё твоё на́ше ва́ше

мои́ мои́х твои́ твои́х на́ши на́ших ва́ши ва́ших

gen моего́ твоего́ на́шего ва́шего


мое́й твое́й на́шей ва́шей
моего́ твоего́ на́шего ва́шего
мои́х твои́х на́ших ва́ших

dat моему́ твоему́ на́шему ва́шему


мое́й твое́й на́шей ва́шей
моему́ твоему́ на́шему ва́шему
мои́м твои́м на́шим ва́шим

inst мои́м твои́м на́шим ва́шим


мое́й твое́й на́шей ва́шей
мои́м твои́м на́шим ва́шим
мои́ми твои́ми на́шими ва́шими

prep моём твоём на́шем ва́шем


мое́й твое́й на́шей ва́шей
моём твоём на́шем ва́шем
мои́х твои́х на́ших ва́ших
Russian/Possessive Pronouns 83

The 3rd person possessive pronouns (его́ his, её her, его́ its, их their) take the gender and the quantity of the
possessing person/object:
"фильм" (movie) is of masculine gender, yet:
Бо́ря рассказа́л о его́ люби́мом фи́льме. (Borya told about his favorite movie.)
А́нна рассказа́ла о её люби́мом фи́льме. (Anna told about her favorite movie.)
"кни́га" (book) is of feminine gender, yet:
Его́ кни́га ста́ла бестсе́ллером. (His book became a bestseller.)
Её кни́га ста́ла бестсе́ллером. (Her book became a bestseller.)
"джи́нсы" (jeans) is a plural only noun, yet:
Его́ джи́нсы вы́глядели вызыва́юще. (His jeans looked outrageous.)
Её джи́нсы вы́глядели вызыва́юще. (Her jeans looked outrageous.)
The above rule is common to both English and Russian languages and is opposite to the one in French.
The reflexive(?) pronouns (свой his/her/its own m., своя his/her/its own f., своё his/her/its own n., свои his/her/its
own pl.), as well as all possessive nouns except the 3rd person ones take the gender and the quantity of the object in
possession:
"фильм" (movie) is of masculine gender, and:
Бо́ря рассказа́л о своём люби́мом фи́льме. (Borya told about his favorite movie.)
А́нна рассказа́ла о своём люби́мом фи́льме. (Anna told about her favorite movie.)
"Я не ви́дел твоего́ люби́мого фи́льма, Бо́ря." (I didn't see your favorite movie, Borya).
"Я не ви́дел твоего́ люби́мого фи́льма, А́нна." (I didn't see your favorite movie, Anna.)
"кни́га" (book) is of feminine gender, and:
Свое́й кни́ги он никогда́ не написа́л. (He never wrote his own book.)
Свое́й кни́ги она́ никогда́ не написа́ла. (She never wrote her own book.)
"Мо́жно, возьму́ твою́ кни́гу, Бо́ря?" (Can I take your book, Borya?)
"Мо́жно, возьму́ твою́ кни́гу, А́нна?" (Can I take your book, Anna?)
"джи́нсы" (jeans) is a plural-only noun, and:
Бо́ря наде́л свои́ джи́нсы. (Borya put on his own jeans.)
А́нна наде́ла свои́ джи́нсы. (Anna put on her own jeans.)
Тебе́ иду́т твои́ джи́нсы, Бо́ря. (Your jeans fit you, Borya.)
Тебе́ иду́т твои́ джи́нсы, А́нна. (Your jeans fit you, Anna.)
This rule doesn't apply to English, but agrees with the use of 1st and 2nd person possessive pronouns in French.
Russian/Vocabulary 84

Russian/Vocabulary
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Russian Vocabulary
• /Colors/
• /Rooms and Furniture/
• /Days of the Week/
• /Months/
• /Seasons/
• /Plants and Animals/
• /Music/
• Easily Confused Words

Russian/Geographical Names
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Geographical names
• Росси́я

Russian

Major cities
Russian/Geographical Names 85

in English на русском
языке

Moscow Москва́

St Petersburg Санкт-Петербу́рг

Yekaterinburg Екатеринбу́рг

Samara Сама́ра

• Ни́жний Но́вгород
• Челя́бинск
• Пермь
• Волгогра́д
• Тверь
• Росто́в-на-Дону́
• Каза́нь
• Уфа́
• Краснода́р
• Бе́лгород
• Воро́неж
• Курск
• Му́рманск
• Смоле́нск
• Орёл (ё is always accented, very often written as "е", without diacritics)
• Омск
• Новосиби́рск
• Ирку́тск
• Красноя́рск
• Комсомо́льск-на-Аму́ре
• Владивосто́к
• Хаба́ровск
Other Russian names
• Во́лга
• Ле́на
• Енисе́й
• Байка́л
• Чё́рное мо́ре

World

Countries
• Аме́рика
• США (сэ-ше-а́)
• Кана́да
• Фра́нция
• Герма́ния
• Кита́й
• И́ндия
Russian/Geographical Names 86

• Ита́лия
• Ям́айка
• Испа́ния
• Япо́ния
• Австра́лия
• Но́вая Зела́ндия
• Коре́я
• Вьетна́м
• Еги́пет
Cities
• Вашингто́н
• Нью-Йо́рк
• Бо́стон
• Рим
• Торо́нто
• Ло́ндон
• Берли́н
• Варша́ва
• Пра́га
• Бухаре́ст
• Лос-А́нджелес
• Но́вый Орлеа́н
• Пари́ж
• Сан-Франци́ско
• Си́дней
• Ме́льбурн
• Пеки́н
• То́кио
• Каи́р
Russian/Useful Words and Expressions 87

Russian/Useful Words and Expressions


Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

До́брое у́тро (Dobroye utro)


good morning
До́брый день (Dobriy den)
good day
До́брый ве́чер (Dobriy vecher)
good evening
Здра́вствуйте (Zdravstvuyte)
it's a kind of universal greeting, you can use it 24 hours a day, though only once per day to the same person.
formal.
Споко́йной но́чи (Spokoynoy nochi)
good night (literally, 'peaceful night')
Приве́т (Privyet)
hi. informal.
До свида́ния (Do svidanya)
good bye
Пока́ (Poka)
bye; also used as English "until": подождите, пока я приду (wait until I come)
Пожа́луйста (Pozhalusta)
please; also used for saying "you are welcome" as an abreviation of "please think nothing of it"
Спаси́бо (Spasiba)
thanks
Прошу́ проще́ния (Proshu prosheniya)
I'm sorry / excuse me
Извини́те (Izvinitye)
I'm sorry / excuse me (less formal)
Да (Da)
yes
Нет (Nyet)
no / not
Как дела́? (Kak dyela?)
How are you?
Russian/Useful Words and Expressions 88

Хорошо́. (Kharasho)
Fine.
Я бу́ду борщ с больши́м коли́чеством смета́ны (в рестора́не) (Ya budu borshcht sbal'shim kalichistvuhm smitany
(fristarani))
I'll take borshch with lots of sour cream (in the restaurant).
Как Вас зову́т? (Kak Vac zovut?)
What is your name? (lit. "What do [they] call you?")
Когда́ Вы роди́лись? (Kogda Vy rodi lis?)
When were you born?
Где Вы роди́лись? (Gdye Vy rodi lis?)
Where were you born?
Где Вы живёте? (Gdye Vy zhivyotye?)
Where do you live?
Кто Вы? (Kto Vy?)
Who are you?
Где Вы? (Gdye Vy?)
Where are you?
Где Вы у́читесь? (Gdye Vy u chityes?)
Where do you study?

Translation Phrase Transcription Literal translation

Russian русский /ˈruskʲɪj/ (listen)

hello здравствуйте /ˈzdrastvujtʲe/ (listen) be healthy (imperative 2nd person plural/singular


polite)

good-bye до свидания /do svʲɪˈdanja/ (listen) until seeing

please пожалуйста /poˈʐalujsta/ (listen)

thank you спасибо /spʌˈsʲibə/ (listen)

that one тот /tot/ (listen)

how much? сколько? /ˈskolʲko/ (listen)

English английский /anˈglʲijskʲɪj/ (listen)

yes да /da/ (listen)

no нет /nʲɛt/ (listen) “there isn’t” (short for не есть)

sorry извините /ɪzvʲɪˈnitʲɪ/

I don’t understand не понимаю /nʲe ponɪˈmaju/

I don’t speak Russian не говорю по‑русски /nʲɪ govʌˈrʲu po.ˈruskʲɪ/

generic toast за здоровье /zə zdʌˈrovjɪ/ (listen) for health

Do you speak English? говорите /govʌˈrʲitʲɪ po.anˈglʲijskʲɪ/ (listen)


по‑английски?

where’s the bathroom? где здесь туалет? /gdɛ zdesʲ tuaˈlɛt/ where here (is) (the) toilet?

I love you тебя люблю /teˈbʲa lʲuˈblʲu/


Russian/Various Stuff 89

Russian/Various Stuff
Russian language · Русский язык
Lessons Introduction · Alphabet · Lesson 1 · Lesson 2 · Lesson 3 · Lesson 4 · Lesson 5 (view) ( edit
[1]
)
Reference Numbers · Declensions · Adjectives · Conjugations · Prepositions · Verbal Aspect · Interrogative
Pronouns · Personal Prn. · Possessive Prn. · Cursive
Appendices Appendix · Alphabet · Internet · Cheat Sheet

Warning: this stuff probably contains errors.

Compact table of cases

Male, inanimate

singular plural

N этот мой первый красивый синий стол эти мои первые красивые синие столы

A этот мой первый красивый синий стол эти мои первые красивые синие столы

G этого моего первого красивого синего стола этих моих первых красивых синих столов

D этому моему первому красивому синему столу этим моим первым красивым синим столам

I этим моим первым красивым синим столом этими моими первыми красивыми синими столами

L этом моём первом красивом синем столе этих моих первых красивых синих столах

Male, animate

singular plural

N этот мой первый красивый синий кот эти мои первые красивые синие коты

A этого моего первого красивого синего кота этих моих первых красивых синих котов

G этого моего первого красивого синего кота этих моих первых красивых синих котов

D этому моему первому красивому синему коту этим моим первым красивым синим котам

I этим моим первым красивым синим котом этими моими первыми красивыми синими котами

L этом моём первом красивом синем коте этих моих первых красивых синих котах

Neuter
Russian/Various Stuff 90

singular plural

N это моё первое красивое синее кресло эти мои первые красивые синие кресла

A это моё первое красивый синее кресло эти мои первые красивые синие кресла

G этого моего первого красивого синего кресла этих моих первых красивых синих кресел

D этому моему первому красивому синему креслу этим моим первым красивым синим креслам

I этим моим первым красивым синим креслом этими моими первыми красивыми синими креслами

L этом моём первом красивом синем кресле этих моих первых красивых синих креслах

Female, inanimate

singular plural

N эта моя первая красивая синяя карта эти мои первые красивые синие карты

A эту мою первую красивую синюю карту эти мои первые красивые синие карты

G этой моей первой красивой синей карты этих моих первых красивых синих карт

D этой моей первой красивой синей карте этим моим первым красивым синим картам

I этой моей первой красивой синей картой этими моими первыми красивыми синими картами

L этой моей первой красивой синей карте этих моих первых красивых синих картах

Female, animate

singular plural

N same as female, inanimate эти мои первые красивые синие карты

A эти мои первые красивые синие карты

G этих моих первых красивых синих карт

D этим моим первым красивым синим картам

I этими моими первыми красивыми синими картами

L этих моих первых красивых синих картах

Expressions
every day - каждый день, ежедневно
every week - каждую неделю, еженедельно
every month - каждый месяц, ежемесячно
every year - каждый год, ежегодно
compass points N S E W
Russian/Various Stuff 91

север

запад восток

юг

• Yugoslavia - Югославия
• Vladiwostok - Владивосток

Various words
• big - большой
• good - хороший
• new - новый
• old - старый
• old man - старик
• cold - холодный (прилагательное), холодно (наречие)
• refrigerator - холодильник
• kitchen - кухня
• televison - телевизор
• table - стол
• chair - стул
• furniture - ме'бель (only singular)
• to be engaged in - заниматься
• to know - знать
• circle - круг (фигура), кружок (клуб)
• course - курс
• letter - письмо
• night - ночь
• to work - работать
• participant - участник
• bread - хлеб
• good - хорошо
• bad - плохо

Address notation
The reverse order is used: first city, underneath street and at the bottom the person the letter is sent to. The lines are
marked with abbreviations: г. (город - city), ул. (улица - street), д. (дом - building) of бл. (блок - blok), кв.
(квартира - apartment) of ап. (апартамент - apartment):
г. Москва 115114
ул. Петрова, д. 14, кв. 15
Иванову Борису
Note two things about the name of the addressee: 1) the name is in the dative case (because the letter is being sent to
this person) and 2) the last name comes first, then the first name, and finally the patronimic if it is applicable and will
be included. This order is not only used for letters, but is used in nearly all official documents printed (or written) in
Russian.
Russian/Various Stuff 92

Also note that an индекс (6 digits), which is something like an American zip code, should probably be included as
well, but I've been told by Russians that the индекс is not vital to the arrival of your parcel. But correct индекс
makes arrival more predictible in measure of time.
Finally: If sending mail internationally between Russian post and non-Russian post, I recommend including the
name of the addressee country in the language of the postal service of origin, as this part of the shipment must of
course be handled by domestic post. The rest of the address should be written in the language (and script) of the
destination. For example, if sending a letter to the address listed above from the United States, append the line
"RUSSIA" to the beginning. Likewise if sending mail home to the U.S. from Russia, append "США" to the head of
the address.

Russian/Cheat Sheet
This is the Cheat Sheet for the Russian for English Speakers Wikibook. It is intended to be a one page quick guide
to the Russian Language, and should serve as a reference to the general text, at http:/ / en. wikibooks. org/ wiki/
Russian, which is released under the GNU Free Documentation License.

The Alphabet
Аа Бб Вв Гг Дд Ee Ёё Жж Зз Ии Йй Кк Лл Мм Нн Оо Пп Рр Сс Тт Уу Фф Хх Цц Чч Шш Щщ ь Ыы ъ Ээ Юю Яя

ah b v g d ye yo zh z ee y k l m n o p r s t oo f kh ts ch sh shch [1] ɨ e yu ya
[2]

[1] The soft sign palatalizes the preceding consonant.


[2] The hard sign indicates hard pronunciation.

• O sounds like hello only when it is stressed. Otherwise it is pronounced as in money. One word with the three
variants of "O" is "хорошо". The first "o" is pronounced as "ah", the second as "uh", and the third as "oh".
• Consonants can be either hard or soft. They are hard unless followed by я, е, и, ё, ю, or ь.
• At the end of a word, or before unvoiced consonants (like T), the following pronunciations change: б→п, в→ф,
г→к, д→т, ж→ш, and з→с. Ex. ход → KHOT
• Palatalization (or soft consonants) means the letter is pronounced with the middle of the tongue. Ex: Pronounce
ball while holding your tongue.

General Expressions
Hello Здравствуйте ZDRASTvuytye

Yes да DA

No нет NYET

Please Пожалуйста paZHAlusta

Thank you Спасибо spaSEEba

Excuse me Извините eezveeNEEtye

Careful Осторожно astaROZHna

Just a minute Минуточку miNUtachku

Sure, Certainly Конечно kanYESHna

I'm sorry - informal (formal) Прости(те) prahSTEE(tye)

How are you? Как дела? KAK dyeLAH


Russian/Cheat Sheet 93

Bye (very informal) Пока pahKAH

Goodbye До свидания da sveedaneya

Great Отлично Otlichno

Good Хорошо HaruhSHO

Bad Плохо PLOkho

Normal/Ok Нормально NorMAHL'no


Article Sources and Contributors 94

Article Sources and Contributors


Russian  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1856213  Contributors: Adrignola, Alton, Buncic, Dallas1278, Derbeth, German Men92, Herbythyme, Ilgiz, Martin Kraus,
Mike.lifeguard, Paul Lynch, Rappo, Runningfridgesrule, Thenub314, Whiteknight, Wknight8111, Ђорђе Д. Божовић, 8 anonymous edits

Russian/Contents  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1614150  Contributors: Adrignola, Alenvers, Alton, Atitarev, Buncic, Derbeth, Dysprosia, Everlong, Fleminra,
Gandalf1491, German Men92, Guaka, Ilgiz, Ilya, Inisheer, Karl Wick, Member, Mike.lifeguard, Mkn, Nikai, Paul Lynch, Pretorean, Snarius, Tdkehoe, VSimonian, Wanjuscha, Wikitiki89, 29
anonymous edits

Russian/Alphabet  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1808860  Contributors: AVRS, Alton, Atitarev, Baev, Buncic, Derbeth, Everlong, Fleminra, Guaka, Ilgiz, Justinhaynes,
Kowey, Mammatus, Nikai, Paul Lynch, Quanthon, Tdkehoe, ThePCKid, W Heald, Wereon, 30 anonymous edits

Russian/Typing  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1635787  Contributors: Alton, Decora, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Lesson 1  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1758263  Contributors: AVRS, Adrignola, Akonas, Alton, Atitarev, Buncic, DenLianda, Derbeth, Everlong, Fleminra,
FreshFruitsRule-WB, Geocachernemesis, Geoking66, Guaka, Ilgiz, Ladywater, Meph666, Nikai, Nymos, Paul Lynch, Peter Isotalo, RMFan1, Rappo, Storeye, Tdkehoe, W Heald, Wanjuscha,
Wikitiki89, Xania, Хинт, 62 anonymous edits

Russian/Lesson 2  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1608299  Contributors: Baev, Buncic, CivilCasualty, Everlong, Fleminra, Friedenshalter, Guaka, Ilgiz, Nhesketh, Nikai,
Snarius, Storeye, Wolfox4777, 34 anonymous edits

Russian/Lesson 3  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1891525  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Fleminra, Friedenshalter, Guaka, Kdyer1980, Ladywater, Nikai,
Nonstandardmonkey, Ppragman, Tdkehoe, VSimonian, Wereon, Ylem, 45 anonymous edits

Russian/Lesson 4  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1608349  Contributors: Buncic, Dcajacob, Everlong, Friedenshalter, Jlenthe, Nikai, Rappo, Tdkehoe, W Heald, 24
anonymous edits

Russian/Lesson 5  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1608351  Contributors: Atitarev, Friedenshalter, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Numbers  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1789927  Contributors: Baev, Buncic, Derbeth, Everlong, Guaka, Ilgiz, Nikai, Sleepisdreamier, Wereon, 28 anonymous
edits

Russian/Appendix/Tables of declension  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1746533  Contributors: Adrignola, Buncic, DesultoryMurmurs, Friedenshalter, Guaka, Iarlagab,
Ilgiz, Jguk, Paul Lynch, Rappo, Rredwell, 10 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Adjectives  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1657906  Contributors: Adrignola, Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 6 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Introduction  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1718524  Contributors: Alton, Buggie111, Dallas1278, Gandalf1491, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 3 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Articles  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1746572  Contributors: Adrignola, Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 2 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Gender  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1697022  Contributors: Alton, D V S, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 4 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Pronouns  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1785957  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, Thenub314, Wanjuscha, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Cases  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1722331  Contributors: Alton, Atitarev, Dallas1278, Hagindaz, Jguk, Tdkehoe, Хинт, 5 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Nominative  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1649118  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 2 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Genitive case  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1245797  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Nikai, Tdkehoe, Wanjuscha

Russian/Grammar/Dative case  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1245795  Contributors: Aleksev, Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 3 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Accusative case  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1318289  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Nikai, Tdkehoe, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Instrumental case  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1430843  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 4 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Prepositional case  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1682754  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Keizers, Tdkehoe, 4 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Noun cases  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1743450  Contributors: Alton, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 3 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Past tense  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1750257  Contributors: Adrignola, Alton, Dallas1278, 3 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/Verbs  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1608355  Contributors: Alton, Atitarev, Cheburashka, Dallas1278, Friedenshalter, Jguk, Rappo, Rekenavry,
Tdkehoe, 5 anonymous edits

Russian/Grammar/What and Which  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1245804  Contributors: Alton, Cheburashka, Dallas1278, Jguk, Tdkehoe, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Names  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1103711  Contributors: BeringStrait, Buncic, Dcajacob, Everlong, Rappo, Tdkehoe, 5 anonymous edits

Russian/Loanwords  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1618823  Contributors: Aleksev, Buncic, Everlong, Fleminra, Guaka, Kneiphof, Rappo, Ђорђе Д. Божовић, 25
anonymous edits

Russian/Cursive  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1636979  Contributors: Alton, Rekenavry, Sabbut, Tomacsh, Хинт

Russian/Prepositions  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1400369  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, F. Delpierre, Guaka, Ilgiz, 18 anonymous edits

Russian/Verbal Aspect  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=836507  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Guaka, Rredwell, 10 anonymous edits

Russian/False Friends  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1603272  Contributors: Adrignola, 3 anonymous edits

Russian/Interrogative Pronouns  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=428130  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Guaka, Ilgiz

Russian/Personal Pronouns  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1775978  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Guaka, Ilgiz, 2 anonymous edits

Russian/Possessive Pronouns  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1102333  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Fleminra, Guaka, Ilgiz, 11 anonymous edits

Russian/Vocabulary  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1906611  Contributors: Adrignola, Buncic, Everlong, Rappo, Tdkehoe, 1 anonymous edits

Russian/Geographical Names  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1636977  Contributors: Atitarev, Buncic, Everlong, Guaka, Snarius, 2 anonymous edits

Russian/Useful Words and Expressions  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1628095  Contributors: Buncic, Dcajacob, Everlong, Fleminra, Guaka, Ilgiz, Kneiphof, Michael A.
White, Mike.lifeguard, 14 anonymous edits

Russian/Various Stuff  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1715824  Contributors: Buncic, Everlong, Gentgeen, Guaka, Ilgiz, Kneiphof, Paul Lynch, W Heald, Withinfocus, 8
anonymous edits
Article Sources and Contributors 95

Russian/Cheat Sheet  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?oldid=1676526  Contributors: Adrignola, Alton, Atitarev, Griesimatthew, 8 anonymous edits
Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors 96

Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors


Image:Smolny Convent 2.JPG  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Smolny_Convent_2.JPG  License: Public Domain  Contributors: Horvat
File:25%.svg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:25%.svg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: Karl Wick
Image:MoscowCity2007.jpg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:MoscowCity2007.jpg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: BOLSCHOI, EugeneZelenko, S1
Image:KB_Eng-Rus_QWERTY(ЙЦУКЕН).svg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:KB_Eng-Rus_QWERTY(ЙЦУКЕН).svg  License: GNU Free Documentation License
 Contributors: User:Denelson83, User:Quanthon, User:StuartBrady
Image:Смольный.jpg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Смольный.jpg  License: unknown  Contributors: User:George Shuklin
Image:Kathmandu-Doorman.JPG  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Kathmandu-Doorman.JPG  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0  Contributors:
User:Seeteufel
Image:Flag of Russia.svg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Flag_of_Russia.svg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: AndriusG, Artem Karimov, Davepape, Dmitry
Strotsev, Drieskamp, Enbéká, Fred J, Gleb Borisov, Herbythyme, Homo lupus, Kiensvay, Klemen Kocjancic, Kwj2772, Mattes, Maximaximax, Miyokan, Nightstallion, Ondřej Žváček, Pianist,
Pumbaa80, Putnik, R-41, Radziun, Rainman, Reisio, Rfc1394, Rkt2312, Rocket000, Sasa Stefanovic, SeNeKa, Srtxg, Stianbh, Wikiborg, Winterheart, Zscout370, Zyido, ОйЛ, 34 anonymous
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Image:Lenin and stalin.jpg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Lenin_and_stalin.jpg  License: unknown  Contributors: Alex Bakharev, Augiasstallputzer, Bestalex, Csman,
Diwas, Ed Fitzgerald, Edward, Waldemar, 1 anonymous edits
Image:Smile Lirion.svg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:Smile_Lirion.svg  License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5  Contributors: User:Lirion
Image:USNA cheerleaders.jpg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:USNA_cheerleaders.jpg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: Original uploader was Minesweeper at
en.wikipedia
Image:De claris mulieribus.jpg  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:De_claris_mulieribus.jpg  License: Public Domain  Contributors: Giovanni Boccaccio?
Image:LeninsHangingOrder1.gif  Source: http://en.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=File:LeninsHangingOrder1.gif  License: Public Domain  Contributors: IgorMagic, Вантус
License 97

License
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported
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