Russian language

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Russian (Русский язык; Russkiy yazyk) is a Slavic language spoken in Russia and the former Soviet republics. It is spoken by over 200 million people worldwide.

It is written in the Cyrillic alphabet.

In the Russian present tense, "to be" is not conjugated, and there also no articles (a, an, the), which means that the understanding of a noun as a determinant or indeterminant noun is based on context (I.e. "This is a cat" is literally translated to "This cat"). Though a word "to be" does exist, it is used for more subtle contexts as in "Understanding existence has always been a problem for philosophers", and the past and future tenses.

Every noun and adjective can be declined in 6 cases: nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, prepositional (locative) and instrumental; both in the singular and plural. Because of this freedom, word order is not very important to the speaker, and he or she is able to use word order to make subtle distinctions in tone, in importance, or in relevance.

Verbs are conjugated in the present, past and future tenses, in the indicative, subjunctive and imperative moods. All verbs have two forms (one in the imperfective aspect and another in the perfective) to reflect the perceived completion of the action.

Examples:

  • Здравствуйте! (zdrastvwiche) = formal, pleasure to meet you
  • Привет! (Privyet)= Hello, Hi (between friends).
  • Как поживаете? (Kahk paživayete) = How are you?
  • Как вас зовут? (Kahk vas zavut) = literally "how do they call you" = What's your name?
  • Меня зовут Иван. (Menya zabut Eevan) = My name is Ivan. (literally - they call me, Ivan)