INTRODUCTION TO RUSSIAN ALPHABET
Whatever I have written in two previos “not numbered” texts it was a PLAY with Russian language. From here on we shall start to learn Russian alphabet , letter by letter , as is it in a whole. GRAMMAR, except one elemental lesson, will be later. As Grammar rules are useless if one cannot READ Russian words and pronounce these.
We have 6 vowels ( like in Hindi ” A”, ” O” … ) and 10 letters that “help” to sound like vowels ( like “YA”. ( Though I can see not much of difference in some of this 10 letters with vowels as these can sound LONG and with a stress on them like in vowels ) Consonants are short sounds, they can not be stressed on. They can be divided in three grours – “voiced consonant sound“( as “d”), “voiceless consonant sound ” ( as “t”) and “hissing sounds”( as “sh”). ( Here English is not so good for the translation of phonetics terms …. how it can be “voiceless ” ( like Hindi “ta”) as we can voice it and here it ? So the English translation is, in a way, ” conditional” =)
Please, also note that along with letters I give various EXAMPLES – how these letters sound in different words. The choice of examles should not surprise you as this is MY “personal” text book and I do not know what sort of people would like to study Russian by this text book – college and University students, school children, military school cadets or professionals in some industry ( I gave here only some words for oil and gas professionals).
IF NEEDED there can be written special chapters for a specific group of ” students”( and, if needed, there may be SEVERAL “chapters” or ” vibhaag” for different strata of people learning Russian. Though I admit that a ” vibhaag” for colledge students or even for military schools cadets are much easier to write for me in comparison with ” Pharma language” as I do not know properly even Russian” pharmaceutical language”. Oil and gas “language” is OK as I worked 3 years in an oil and gas journal and wrote some articles on natural gas and on oil in Russian and English languages.
In short . I think that words ” duck” and “mendak” are necessary to know for a child but the chid has no idea what ” oil well drilling” means in his native tongue…
Some Russian words ( with adjectives) may mean absolutely different things. For examle a Russian word РАЗВЕДКА ( fem. sing ). It orginates from a common Vedic Sanskrit and a little “outfashioned” Russian word “VEDA” -” VEDAT”- that means ” to know”, “knowledge”, ” to get knowledge”. But with adjectives it may mean ” to get knowledge” by intelligence officers, by spy satellits in the space, by a groop of soldiers in the rear or the enemy, by geologists prospecting for oil and gas… The latter is necessary to know for an oil or gas professional but he does not need to know about “РАЗВЕДКА” by spies, by soldiers or by”jormalists” under guise =)
Here is the alphabet in pictires for CHILDREN. For military men it would look entirely different =) But as MY students are not defined yet, I give various words.
But before the alphabet let us conclude the first introductory text.
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In the previous introductory text we came to know how some Russian letters may sound and gave some comparative examples in English and Hindi. We even made it possible to use several of these letters that helped as to write in capital letters three words – “two mice and three mice”. ДВЕ МЫШИ И ТРИ МЫШИ =) « И» between these mice means “AND” ( do aur teen chuhiyan ). I admit that it is not the best example as students are usually offered some other examples but I stick to my method and will stay away for the time being from such examples as the usual “ pens” , “pencils”, “ tables” , ” class rooms, ” ”students”, “ teachers” , etc –
However, now in brief, I will inform you that:
- Unlike in English, in Russian language, like in Hindi, nouns are masculine and feminine in gender. Like SAVAAL is masc. and NADI is fem. But we also have a Neutral form – a sort of transsexual Gender =) that is neither masc. nor fem. It applies to the most of such “non alive” things ( cheezen) that are well seen in writing form by the vowel letter at the endings – usually “O’ or “E” ( ye)
1.1.“ОКНО»” ( oknO) – khirki, window and «ГОВНО» (govnO)- tatti, shit – are neuter in Gender as both end with letter “O”. The stress is on the last vowel
Sorry, but I will not illustarate here ” tatti” =)
1.2. But ПОЛЕ (pOlye) – “field” and МОРЕ( mOrye) – “the sea” – these are also neuter in Gender as both end with letter “E”. But the stress is on the first vowel.
The field with wheat. ПШЕНИЧНОЕ (pshenichnoye ) ПОЛЕ ( pole )
- Stress in Russian is much more important than the order of words in a sentence as it is in English. You can change the place of words in a Russian sentence but still it will not be a big mistake and Russians will understand you. The end of words changes but it indicates relationship between the words whereas in English the relationship is indicated by the order of words.
- For example in Russian you can say “Моя девушка имеет собаку”, “Собаку имеет моя девушка” , ” Имеет собаку моя девушка”- in any case the meaning will be the same ” My girl friend has a dog”. But if in English we change the place of words – “My girl friend” and ” a dog” than if translated into Russian it will mean “A dog has my girl friend ” which is a Zoo Porno and we reject it =)
- Almost any change of a stress in Russian makes the word unrecognizable.
- If you say “polyE” or “moryE” with the stress on the last vowel you will not be understood as such words do not exist.
The morale – any word must be pronounced with a correct stress.
( That means that you have to LISTEN to your teacher in prerecorded VIDEO or, if indivigually, by Skype, on-line )
3.This is an important difference with English where only people can be feminine or masculine ( without any difference in use) but all non human beings and a small baby are “IT”. When you say “a cat” in English it can be either “ billa” or billi” – but in Russian, like in Hindi, « КОТ»- billa ( masc) and «КОШКА» ( fem) – billi .
Though for some animals there can be exceptions as for LION and LIONESS in English. Or for a MONKEY ( “ bandar” ) in Russian which is always feminine, even in the speach of a Russian xenophobe that he may apply to Mr. Obama, who, in fact, is neither a monkey nor an animal but a male human being . But in Russian there is no word for MONKEY in masculine =) Only in feminine – “ ОБЕЗЬЯНА» (obezyaana). ( “ bandar”)
If somebody thinks that it is difficult to pronounce Russian words – let him look into a Sanskrit dictionary. You will not see not much difference in the length of many words. Even in Hindi the word “ bhannbhanahat” is not very short =)
4.Unlike in Hindi most animals in Russian language have different words for masculine and feminine. If in Hindi we know “ bakra” and “ bakri” ( Sheеp) yet in Russian it will be ОВЦА ( ovtsa) femin. and БАРАН (baran) masc.
СВИНЬЯ( svinya) fem. – “pig” КАБАН (kaban) – masc “pig” .
КОРОВА ( korova- cow) –fem and БЫК ( byk- bull) -masc.
КОБЫЛА (kobyla)( fem) a mare and ЖЕРЕБЕЦ (zherebets) ( male horse)
But if the sex of a horse is irrelevant – say in cavalry – than the word best applied is ЛOШАДЬ ( LOSHAD) (fem) that can be of any real sex though the word is feminine.
The same applies to the word if sex is irrelevant or it is a male horse for the battle – in these cases the word КОНЬ (kon) is more appropriate. Therefore the soldiers on horses are called КОННИЦА (konnitsa)– “cavalry “(which is female word in grammar but in reality this cavalry may contain more male horses). Such cases can be in any language… The correct use comes usually with the practice.
- The meat of the most animals is derived from a particular sex of the animal and the meat as such is called «МЯСО» (myaso) and it is neuter because of the letter “О” in the end, but the name of a meat from a particular animal is always feminine and the word is created by addition of an ending «ИНА» to the word of an animal thus naming a particular kind of animal meat.
If it is a meet of a sheep it always «БАРАНИНА»(barAnina) ( Though it may be the meat of a female sheep )
The pork meat «СВИНИНА» ( Svineena) ( Though it may be the meat of a male pig )
What Indians call as “ beef” in Russian it is called “ГОВЯДИНА», which comes from the ancient «Sanskrit timеs” when a cow was «ГОВА» ( gOva) and a bull was “ГОВЯД» ( govyaad) “. That makes us presume that the ancient Russians – people from the same big tribe, as ancient Indians, before the resettlement, they also used as a beef meat only a bull meat but not of a cow. One people – one tradition.
Meat of a horse is «КОНИНА» (koneena) – КОНЬ + ИНА as in other names of meat.
There is no word in Russian for the meat of cats and dogs as we do not eat them.
Though some peoples in Asia (Bharat se nazdik… Ek padosi desh me ) who do love their cats and dogs meet and they must have words for it =)
- Russian as English and Hindi has singular and plural NUMERALS .
1000 years ago we had binary numerals as well, as in Sanskrit, but happily we do not have it today. Unfortunately numerals change along with a noun. But that we shall study in detail later… Not now, in this introduction….
Well… We had two or three mice ( fem) So let “ BILLA” and “ BILLI” catch them. And we say –
ОДИН КОТ ( odin kot-) = one cat.
ДВА КОТА ( dva kotA-two cats )
ТРИ КОТА (tri kota- three cats )
For 2-3-4 cats ending is the same. For more than 5 it is different. But in fact to keep 5 or more cats is dangerous for your fresh air =)
As to for fem. “cat” the ending will be as with fem. mice Upto 5 of them also =)
ОДНА КОШКА ( odnaA kOshka),
ДВЕ, ТРИ КОШКИ ( dve, tri kOshki )
Like ONE МЫШЬ and
TWO МЫШИ…. «И» ( feminine) as the ending for female cats are similar with feminine mice…
But if there are 5-10-100 fem.and masc cats or mice the ending will be different ПЯТЬ КОШЕК (pyat koshek- 5 cats,
pyat myshey – 5 mice- ПЯТЬ МЫШЕЙ.
ПЯТЬ ИЛИ СТО КОТОВ ( pyat kotov or ( ИЛИ) sto kotov – 100 cats ).
But have no fear, there are some rules to put it all in a sort of a system.
- So let us practice with other letters as these are given in Russian Alphabet
7.1. A…- A Р М И Я ( fem) ( Armiya) – Army, Sena ( In Hindi and Sanskrit it is also fem. )
И Н Д И Й С К –А Я А Р М И Я indiyskaya –Armiya – Indian Army
( I indicate HERE stress by BOLD or Big letters, or sometimes I make a long sound by double vowel, but one can always remember that it is a STRESS and NOT a long sound. Though for Indians it is probably easier to remember the stress in a more familiar way by “long sounds” written by Latin script instead of Devanagari.
Р О С С И Й С К- А Я А Р М И Я ( rossiyskaya Armiya) – Russian Army
ИНДИЙСК-ИЙ ФЛОТ , ( indiyskiy flot),
РОССИЙСК-ИЙ ФЛОТ -rossiyskiy flot
ФЛОТ means NAVY but it is masculine and the ending of an adjective to masc. Navy is different in comparison with adjective to fem. word Army.
A – АВТОМАТ ( avtomAt ) Assault rifle ( masc)
ДВА , ТРИ АВТОМАТА ( 2-3-4 of them)
beginning from 5 – 5, 10, 100, 200 etc. АВТОМАТ-ОВ. Like КОТ-ОВ
But – Soldiers have assault rifles –СОЛДАТЫ ИМЕЮТ АВТОМАТ-Ы ( plural)
So we can see that soldiers and carbines have the same ending in these words in plural.
There are many exceptions in Russian but there are rules also.
Let us start from the first sound and letter A. Like in “aadmi” that is the rudiment of the name of the first Biblical man – Adam =)
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The letter “А “
A ( capital letter, uppercase ), а ( small letter, lower case letter )
(MASC.-M) – АВТОМАТ (avtomaat)- assault rifle
(FEMININ-F ) АРТИЛЛЕРИЯ ( artileriya) – “ artillery” ( Has no plurals)
МНОГО АРТИЛЛЕРИИ ( mnogo artillerii) – a lot of artillery guns
МАЛО АРТИЛЛЕРИИ ( malo artillerii ) – a few of artillery guns
The word АРТИЛЛЕРИЯ here is a noun. fem.
АРТИЛЛЕРИЙСКИЙ ОГОНЬ ( artilleriyskiy ogon – agni in Sanskrit) – artillery fire Here the word АРТИЛЛЕРИЙСКИЙ is an adjective to “Fire”. As in English.
F – АТАКА. (ataka) – “attack”
9 ТАНКОВ ПРОТИВНИКА И ВЗВОД ПЕХОТЫ НАС АТАКУЕТ
(9 tankov protivnika i vzvod pehoty nas atakuet )
(9 tanks and a platoon of the enemy infantry attack us)
In Russian we can change the place of words but the meaning will be the same…
“Nas atakuet 9 tankov protivnika i vzvod pehoty”
“9 tankov protivnika i vzvod pehoty nas atakuet”
“Atakuet nas 9 tankov protivnika i vzvod pehoty”
“Pehota” is infantry. Even in armored vehicles.
In a professional military language Russians do not use the word “ enemy” – ВРАГ (vrag. sing), ВРАГИ ( vragI – pl.) Military language operates with the word ПРОТИВНИК ( “proteevnik”) that means those enemy forces that are “prOtiv” – against us. Always singular. ) Vrag, vragi – that is for the language of civilians…
The letter ” Б “
Б ( capital letter, uppercase ), б ( small letter, lower case letter )
M- БРАТ ( brat ) – brother in Engl. Bhrata in Sanskrut БРАТЬЯ ( bratya) – brothers ( plural)
ДВА БРАТ-А. ДВА СОЛДАТ-А. ДВА БАРАН-А, ДВА КОТ-А ( two brothers, two soldiers. two sheeps, two cats – all have the same ending as masculine and plural but if less than 5.
But in singular and beginning from number 5 the endings and numerals may be different.
ПЯТЕРО БРАТЬЕВ ( pyatero bratyev- five brothers)
But it can be also said as usual Пять братьев ( five brothers), десять солдат ( “das sainik), два кота ( two cats) Only nouns can change after 5, not numerical.
M- БАРАН ( barAn) – “ bakra” ( masc) БАРАНЫ ( plural)
F- БАРАНИНА ( barAnina) “ bakre ka gosht” ( fem)
M – БОЙ ( boy ) – battle, engagement ( musc)
БОЙ ДЛИЛСЯ ТРИ ЧАСА
( boy dlilsya tri chasa )
(The) engagements lasted (for) 3 hours).
МЫ ПОТЕРЯЛИ ШЕСТЬ ЧЕЛОВЕК
( My poteryaly shest ( shash in Sanskrit) chelovek) –
We lost six men.
БОЕПРИПАСЫ ( boyepripasy) – ( cartridges, shells and mines in Ground Forces)
Almost always in plural.
F -БАНЯ ( bAnya) – a special small house with hot HUMID steem ( it is DRY in Finnish SAUNA), with bushes of oak leaves to beat each other not in a sado-mazo manner but to have a massage of the skin wich stimulates cleansing of the body toxins and not only sweat and dirty body. Russian БАНЯ has two aims – to wash the body and to cleanse it inside by very intense sweating in a hot humid air, lightly bitten by oak leaves dry bushes, which are prepared beforehand, in summer. On two upper photos a village БАНЯ is shown – the first with typical barrel of water , etc. At the second – the HUMID steam air that is very typical. The third is an example of an ABSURD TRANSLATION by our Chinese “comrades”, inviting to visit a Russian БАНЯ which they call in English a”Russian CREMATORIUM“. It is very typical for Chinese translation=) At other pages I will show more such “TRANSLATIONS”
The letter “В “
В ( capital letter, uppercase ), в ( small letter, lower case letter ), like in “vijai”
M – ВЗВОД (vzvod ) – platoon in Ground Forces
ВЗВОД ВЕДЁТ БОЙ ВОСЕМЬ ЧАСОВ В ОКРУЖЕНИИ.
Vzvod vedyet boy vosem chasov v okruzhenii.
The) platoon ( is) engaged (for) 8 hours in encirclement
БОЕПРИПАСЫ ПОЧТИ ЗАКОНЧИЛИСЬ.
Boepripasy pochti zakonchilis ) –
(The) munitions (are) almost over)
F – ВОДА. (vodA ) – water
ХОЛОДНАЯ ВОДА ( kholodnaya vodA ) – cold water
ГОРЯЧАЯ ВОДА ( goryachaya vodA ) – hot water
КИПЯЧЁНАЯ ВОДА ( kipyachyeonaya vodA ) – boild water – ” ubla paani”
F- ВЕРА ( vEra) Has many meanings – faith, religion, belief
ВЕРА БОЛЬШИНСТВА ИНДИЙЦЕВ – ИНДУИЗМ
( Vera bolshinstva indiytsev – induizm )
(The) faith (of) majority (of) indians ( is) Hinduism.
F- ВЫСОТА ( vysota) The height. Also have many meanings as some words in Hindi.
КАКАЯ У ВАС ВЫСОТА И СКОРОСТЬ ( F) ?
( Kakaya u vas vysota I skorost ? )
what is your height and speed ?
Высота 6000 , СКОРОСТЬ 900 –
(The) height is 6000, speed 900.)
( Polyet normalnyi)
(the) flight is normal
Please note that unlike English, German, French, Italian and Spahish there is no definite or indefinite ARTICLES in Russian language as these are absent in Hindi. Therefore I put them in BRACKETS to make texts look more alike….
Yet the height of a man ( or a wоman) is called “ rost” –РОСТ.
Still the root of a word describing a tall man or a woman is the same – ВЫС .
The man is “ВЫСОКИЙ” ( vysOkiy). a woman is ВЫСОКАЯ ( vysOkaya – “tall”)
МОЯ ДЕВУШКА ВЫСОКАЯ.
Moya devushka – my girlfriend – vysokaya – is tall.
ЕЁ РОСТ 178 см. ( yeyo rost 178 cm – Her “height” (is) 178 cm. ( tall )
Me and my ex-wife in February 2015. 189 cm. and 178 cm. tall.
МЫ ОБА ВЫСОКИЕ
My oba vysokiye
We ( are ) both tall.
F- ВЫСОТА. ( VysotA) – “High point, uphill position) ( Military lang.) – An uphill to be defended of to by stormed by the troops.
МЫ ПОЛУЧИЛИ ПРИКАЗ – ВЗЯТЬ ВЫСОТУ 338 В НОЧНОЙ АТАКЕ.
( MY polucheeli prikAz – vzYAt vysotU 338 v nochnOy attAkye )
( We received (the) order to take (the) height 338 in (a) night attack)
The letter ” Г “
Г ( capital letter, uppercase ) г ( small letter, lower case letter )
ГАРЕМ ( Masc ) Султан имеет большой гарем. ( SultAn imeet bolshoy garem) – Sultan has (a ) big Harem.
F- ГОРА ( sing/ fem), ГОРЫ (pl )
ЭВЕРЕСТ САМАЯ ( the most ) ВЫСОКАЯ ГОРA ( in ) В ГИМАЛАЯХ – ( Everest samaya vysokay gora v Gimalayah ) – Everest is the highest mountain in Himalayas
M– ГАЗ – gaz – “gas” ( not petrol which Americans also call ” gas”. ГАЗЫ -pl.
M- ГАЗОПРОВОД -( gazoprovod ) – gas pipeline
M- ГАЗОВОЗ ( МЕТАНОВОЗ) – gazovoz or metanovoz – liquified gas tanker
M- ПРИРОДНЫЙ ГАЗ – priroddnui gaz – natural gas methane
СЖИЖЕННЫЙ ГАЗ – szheezhennyi gaz – liquified natural gas ( LNG )
КОМПРИМИРОВАННЫЙ ГАЗ – komprimirovannyi gaz- commpressed at a high pressure natural gas ( CNG )
ГАЗОВАЯ СМЕСЬ ПРОПАН-БУТАН- gazovaya smes propan- butan. The mixture of oil gases – propane and butane that is usually used for a domestiс stove with baloons.
БЫТОВОЙ ГАЗ ( bytovoi gaz) – ” domestic gas”. In fact it is the same natural gas – methane- that is there in a domestic stove in every city kitchen as ” baloon gas” – propane-butane – is dangerous for use in multy story buildungs. In case of an explosion it can destroy as a small bomb a few apartmens. The baloon gas is used in villages where there is no pipelines with natural gas. Usually these are very distant vilages from cities. Mostly villages are gasified with a natural pipeline gas.
ПОПУТНЫЙ ГАЗ – poputnyi gaz – it is a petroleum gas or as Americans call it ” torch” gas that is often burnt at the place of oil pumpng as quite often it requires more expenduture to transpot it to a wholesale trader from a distant oil drilling field, despite the fact that it is mostly propane-buthane mixture that has a price in Russia more than a half of the price of petrol per litre. The government insists on utilizing this gas as a fuel but aften to no avail as “Russian” ( non ethnic “Russians” mostly ) owners of oil fields want very FAST profit and even about 50% of oil remains in the ground that cannot be extracted later. It is a big problem in “liberal” Russia.
ТЕХНИЧЕСКИЕ ГАЗЫ= tehnicheskiye gazy – idustrial gases
Industrial gases are used in all industries. There is OXIGEN ( КИСЛОРОД ) in blue balloon ( Russians call it “gas baloon”, not as “gas bottle” or a “gas bag”.
” Bottle” ke liye kaafi bara hoga aur 100 kilograms se zyaada hota hai… =)
In red baloon – Helium – ГЕЛИЙ, in dark grey –nitrogen gas – АЗОТ, in light grey – argon gas -АРГОН. in white – gas acetylene – АЦЕТИЛЕН, in black – carbon dioxide -УГЛЕКИСЛЫЙ ГАЗ, in short red baloom – propane – ПРОПАН.
РЕДКИЕ ГАЗЫ – redkiye gazi – Rare Gases
These are really rare gases as these are found in the air in very low concentrations. Like Neon (Ne), Krypton (Kr) and Xenon (Xe) . Sold by the Litres and expensive. Used sometimes in medicine and mostly in high technologies.
The letter ” Д “
ДРУГ (masc, sing ) = friend, “dost” . ДРУЗЬЯ (pl.) – friend, friends
МОЙ ДРУГ ВОЕННЫЙ. МЫ СТАЛИ ДРУЗЬЯ В АРМИИ СОРОК ЛЕТ НАЗАД.
( Moi drug voennyi. My staly druzya v armii sorok let nazad )
( My friend (is a) military ( man) We became friends in ( the) Army 40 years back)
ДЕНЬ ( masc. sing ) -day, ” deen”. ДНИ ( pl) -day, ” deen”
СЕГОДНЯ ХОРОШИЙ ДЕНЬ.
Segodnya khoroshiy dyen.
Today ( is a ) good day.
В ЭТУ ЗИМУ ХОЛОДНИЕ ДНИ БЫВАЮТ РЕДКО.
V etu zeemu ( heema in Sanskrit) kholodnye dni byvayut redko )
(In) This winter cold days happen seldom )
M- ДОМ – dom – house, building, ” makaan”, “ghar “. ДОМА – pl.
But ДОМА means “at home”. The change of the stress changed the meaning.
So… today we have learned five more Russian letters and sounds with some examples of a speech. As you may be aware it is a very simplified Russian sentences. They are correct but very simple. Mostly nouns, some numerals and adjectives. Almost no VERBS. And everything is in PRESENT time.
Please Note that I could not use “ soft sound” and a few more sounds in Latin letters while transliterating Russian speech in Latin letters. So it is just for the beginning to make it possible to roughly read Russian aloud But these sounds are absent in Latin letters and are used very conditionally in absence of proper letters. So try to read Russian ORIGINAL texts as all those sounds are there. Besides Russian letters and the sounds they represent, these are not read in a different manner as in English and French. So after learning the pronunciation you can read aloud any Russian text even if you do not understand it. Provided the stress is indicated in every word you do not know.
But I want to sweet a little the hardships of learning Russian – the system of times in Russian is much easier in comparison with English. But that we shall learn later
( To be continued )
If you missed earlier texts on the subject here are the links