Russian language

Russian (русскийязык)
spoken in: Russia, member states of the GUS (above all Kazakhstan, Ukraine, white Russia), Moldavia, Kirgisistan) as well as into the European Union - States of Latvia and Estland and of emigrants in the USA, Israel, Germany and further European countries
speakers: 170 million native speaker (place 7)

about 110 million Zweitsprachler

official status
office language in: Russia, white Russia, Kazakhstan, Kirgisistan (regional), Ukraine (regional), United Nations
language codes
ISO 639 -1: ru
ISO 639 -2: rus -

the Russian language (in former times also largeRussian called) is the slawische language with most speakers. It forms for the Byelorussian one together with the Ukrainian one (in former times also called smallRussian) , and the Russini group of the ostslawischen languages. The Russian Standardsprache is based on the centralRussian dialects of the area around Moscow.

Russian of approximately 170 million humans as native language one speaks, on whom about 130 million in Russia live.It is office language in Russia, white Russia (together with Byelorussian), Kazakhstan (together with Kasachisch) and the autonomous Republic of Krim belonging to the Ukraine (together with Ukrainian). In these states and/or. Regions is it both native language of a part of the population andalso language of a large part of the public life. Besides there are russischsprachige minorities to all GUS - states as well as in the Baltic. The Russian language is likewise a common language for science, art and technology. If one adds the Zweitsprachler, comesone on approximately 300 million Russian speaker.

Table of contents


Russian alphabet
Аа Бб Вв Гг Дд Ее Ёё
Жж Зз Ии Йй Кк Лл Мм
Нн Оо Пп Рр Сс Тт Уу
Фф Хх Цц Чч Шш ЩщЪъ
Ыы Ьь Ээ Юю Яя

Russian is written with the Russian alphabet (rus.: русскийалфавит od. русскаяазбука), that the cyrillic alphabet (rus.: кириллическийалфавит od. кириллица) comes of.

Since the last spelling reform inThe Russian alphabet consists years 1918 of 33 letters. Of it 10 letters serve for the rendition of the vowels: а, е, ё, и, о, у, ы, э, ю and я.The remaining 23 letters are used for the rendition of consonants, whereby the letters ъ and ь for the reproduction of certain, independent sounds, but when indicators for the hardness or softness of preceding consonants serve [more to it see under: Russian phonetics].

See also: Russian spelling reform of 1918

to phonetics and phonology

see also: Russian phonetics


the phonetic structure of the modern Russian Standardsprache counts itself 42 meaning-meaning single sounds (phonemes), again in6 vowel - and 36 consonant sounds to divide leave. The extensive phoneme inventory of the Russian one explains itself by a characteristic of the discussion typical for slawische languages, most Russian consonants are expressed both hard and softly (palatalisiert).Here it concerns however not all the Phone mentioned, but individual phonemes, because each of these discussion variants is meaning. Some Russian dialects have a specific phoneme existence, into some consonants predominantly hard and/or. palatalisiert or somewhat differently (e.g. guttural) to be expressed.

The discussion of Russian vowels and consonants varies as a function of it, which position they take in a word. One differentiates with vowels between a stressed and a unbetonten position. Thus for example the “o” becomes as [o]in more stressed and expressed as [A] or [ə] in unbetonter position. The discussion of many Russian consonants is determined again by other, it following consonants. Thus become among other things all be correctful consonants not only at the word ending be correctless expressed, but also ifit precede another be correctless consonants.

In contrast to the German is the length of the vowels in the Russian one neither meaning (as e.g. in handle - quietly) still for the correct discussion of a word decisive. The stressed vowels become in thatRule halflong expressed. The unbetonten vowels are short against it and differ frequently from the appropriate stressed vowels also qualitatively. In the Russian one there is no Diphthonge. Both double vowels and two different, sequential vowels become always as particularsSounds expressed (like e.g. in K oo peration, act ue ll, mash European Union m, g egg mpft).


Monophthonge possess vowels the Russian.

Monophthonge of the Russian
in front central in the back
closed i ɨ u
means e o
openly A


the Russian has 36 consonants. Of it 16 in pairs with a palatalisierten and a not palatalisierten sound arises. The sounds /ts/, /t ʲʃʲ/, /ʒ/ and /j/ orderover no exact counterpart.

The table contains the palatalisierte variant from each pair of consonants only.

The consonant Russian
bilabial lab IO
alveolar post office
palatal velar
Plosive p b t D k g
Affrikaten ts tʲʃʲ
Nasale m n
Vibranten r
Frikative f v s z ʃ ʒ x
Approximanten j
lateral one l

source: SAMPA for Russian (English)


the discussion of the Russian language designates the phonetics and the phonology of the Russian Standardsprache. In the broader senseby it also the discussion in different Varietäten ( dialects and dialects) of the Russian language can be understood.


Russian is a non-tonal language, i.e. the pitch of the vowels does not have influence on the meaning oneWord. As also used in German in the Russian one within or at the end of a sentence a different being correct height, over e.g. to mark a declarative sentence of an asking or a proclaiming set. There are for this in Russian 7 different Intonationskonstruktionen (интонационныеконструкции),by ИК-1 to ИК-7 to be designated and different kinds of stating and interrogative sentences mark. In tonal languages however the clay/tone changes the meaning of individual words.

word stress

see also: Word stress in the Russian language

thoseStress of a word (the word accent) has a Russian important and frequently a sense-differentiating meaning in. Wrongly stressed words can lead to understanding difficulties, in particular if they are isolated from the linguistic context or expressed individually. In the linguistic literaturebecomes the Russian word stress among other things free and mobile calls. Thus e.g. become. by the misalignment of the stress within some Russian words their different inflection forms in an educated manner.


like most slawischen languages is also the Russian strong inflecting. In an inflecting language the shape of a word changes within various grammatical categories, on the one hand by adding of affixes (weak od. expresses inflection) or by change of the word trunk (strong od. internal inflection). For the Russian the two kinds of inflection are characteristic. In case of the strong inflection the trunk of many Russian words changes with their diffraction (declination, conjugation, Komparation), through rings off (e.g.: м ыть - м о ю, ж е вать - ж у ёт), consonant shift (e.g.: во з ить - во ж у) or adding and/or. Omission of the master vowels (e.g.: брать - б е ру, од и н- одна). The attributes of the weak and the strong inflection can occur individually in each case or in combination with one another (e.g.: ж е ч ь - ж ё г - ж г у).

Kinds of word and their grammatical categories:
As in Germanin Russian nouns, adjectives and Pronomen after Kasus, Genus and number are bent and only increased adverbs. Russian verbs are bent however not only after tense and number, but in the past form also after Genus. As in Germanin the Russian also name (person, city, country name among other things) and number words are bent. In addition the Russian knows neither determined indefinite article. For the announcement of Kasus, Genus and number step instead numerous Suffixe up. At a small groupRussian words can grammatical categories by misalignment of the word stress by one on the other syllable be formed (more to it see under: Word stress in the Russian language). Further kinds of word in the Russian one are prepositions, conjunctions, question words, Interjektionen, asking and Modalpartikeln as well as the verb particles “бы”. In a sentence they remain always ungebeugt.

The Russian knows three grammatical sexes and six grammatical cases (Kasus). With the declination becomes within the grammatical sexes further afteranimated (i.e. Organism) and dead (i.e. Things) nouns differentiated.

A characteristic of most Russian verbs consists of the fact that they have two different forms, in order to specify an action in the Zeitgeschehen completed as or unfinished. In the linguistic literature becomesthis verbal category as aspect designation (more to it see under: The aspect in the Russian language).

In contrast to the German there is one past form, which is called frequently Präteritum in the Russian Standardsprache only. This designationhowever only the way describes, how the past form of Russian verbs is formed. This takes place exclusively via change of the shape of a verb, as for instance through appendices of specific Suffixe, and not via additional use of auxiliary verbs, as for instance from verbs„have “or „to be “in German.

Syntax (sentence formation):
Since the Russian is strongly inflecting, the bent forms of many Russian words are often singular and correspond only in each case to a certain grammatical category. Therefore is the linkage of individual parts of a sentencein the Russian one not as strictly as regulated in German. So the subject does not have to be set necessarily directly before or after the descriptor, a declarative sentence can with the descriptor begin or end. Within short sentences or individual, closed sentence parts can the word sequence often strongly nevertheless arbitrarily do not vary, without changing thereby sentence semantics. In particular in the poetry this special characteristic of the Russian syntax is frequently used, as sentences are formed occasionally by an uncommon conversion of the words and thusthe Reimfindung facilitates. Some differences between the sentence formation rules in German and in the Russian one can be illustrated with the following examples:

  • In the German sentence „Maria asks January.“sentence semantics is determined by the order [subject] → [descriptor] → [accusative object]. ThoseNouns, in this case the names „Maria “and „January “, do not exhibit grammatical characteristics, them as subject and/or. Accusative object to recognize leave. Therefore, as soon as one exchanges the two nouns with one another, the meaning of the sentence changesin German: „January asks Maria.“. In the Russian one the two nouns leave themselves clear by their inflection forms as subject and/or. Accusative object recognize. The meaning of the sentence „МарияспрашиваетЯна.“(„Maria asks January.“) becomes in the Russian one thus not by the order of the parts of a sentence, but by their inflection forms determines. Therefore sentence semantics does not change by the conversion of the parts of a sentence. In the Russian sentence it Maria to always be, January asks and not turned around: „МарияспрашиваетЯна.“or „МарияЯнаспрашивает.“or „ЯнаМарияспрашивает.“or „ЯнаспрашиваетМария.“. If one wants to say in the Russian one that January Maria asks, one must change the inflection forms of the two nouns: „ЯнспрашиваетМарию.“.
  • In the German sentence „I love you.“the descriptor must always stand in the second place. In the Russian sentence it can be either on second or in the last place: „Ялюблютебя.“and/or.„Ятебялюблю.“. If the descriptor is set to the first place in the sentence, then it introduces a question in the Russian one not, but emphasizes only the action and points in this case to the feeling strength of the speaking:„Люблюятебя.“(„I love you so much.“).

For a detailed representation of the Russian grammar see: Russian grammar

of dialects

one differentiates three linguistically different areas with respect to the European part of Russia: North, central and south Russia.The areas are divided furthermore into individual dialects.


northeast of a line from the Ladogasee over Nowgorod and Jaroslawl to Joschkar Ola. This dialect marks itself by clearly ausgesprochens a unbetontes “o” (оканье - Okanje), gutturales “g” and a hard “t”.

  • Group of dialects of Ladoga and Tichwin
  • group of dialects of Kostroma
  • group of dialects of Wologda
  • group of dialects of Onega
  • dialects of Beloozersk


the northern border runs from sinking Petersburg over Nowgorod and Iwanowo to Nischni Nowgorod and Tscheboksary, southern of Welikije the Luki over Moscow to Pensa. This area shows both northern and southern language courses. In the west the unbetonte “o” is a “o”, in the east a “A” (аканье - Akanje).

  • WestcentralRussian of Pskow
  • westcentralRussian from Nowgorod
  • eastcentralRussian from Moscow and environment
  • eastcentralRussian from Jegorewsk and environment
  • eastcentralRussian from Temnikow and environment
  • eastcentralRussian from Volga Vladimir area


within the range south of Welikije Luki over Rjasan to Tambow. Here speaksone the unbetonte “o” as “A”, a frikatives “g” and a soft “t”.

mixing languages

it gave and gives some mixing languages with the Russian one, naturally developed. Most well-known representatives are the mixtures with the languages Ukrainian (Surschyk ) and Byelorussian ( Trasjanka ), used near. Within the Soviet Union it mixed itself once also with the isolated languages of Siberian and asiatic peoples of Russia. At its arctic borders Norway became forwards100 years still eagerly Russenorsk spoken. In the far east again the contact with Chinese brought Kjachta Russian out. Nationalism destroyed also these mixing languages today. However the Rusinol resulted from the Soviet influence on Cuba lives. In Germany is under onePart the Russian immigrants (not to confound with the Russian-Germans) a GermanRussian mixing language developed.

a whole set of words took itself leaning words the Russian out of the German (see: Would list German words in the Russian one).Beyond that also some Russian words entered German language (see also: GDR linguistic usage).

  • Bolshevik (and/or. eingedeutsch also Bolschewist) - большевик (“Mehrheitler”)
  • Dat - дача
  • Perestroika - перестройка (“change”)
  • Pogrom - погром (“devastation”)
  • Soviet, Soviet etc.- совет (actually “advice”)
  • Sputnik - quilt спутник (“way companions”
  • ) - степь
  • Subbotnik - субботник (of “субботa” for Saturday)
  • Troika - тройка
  • Wodka - водка
  • Zobel - соболь

leaning translations are among other things cultural center, advice (in the sense of meeting, organ), a goalposition (instead of a goal setting) or e.g. Two area dwelling instead of two room dwelling.


a particularly beautiful word is: Object of interest: достопримечательность

further one related Aktikel

Web on the left of

Wikipedia on Russian
Commons: Category: Russian pronunciation - pictures, videos and/or audio files
Wiktionary: Russian - word origin, synonyms and translations
Wikibooks: Russian - learning and teaching materials
Wikiquote:Russische Sprichwörter – Zitate


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