There are few letters  in the end of Russian Alphabet that are mostly ( though not all ) of non Russian origin. The letters as such and sounds are many in the middle of Russian words but not in the beginning, not in the ROOT of a Russian word.

So we shall begin with LETTER “Э” One can easily recognoze familiar words but written in a different script and pronounced ” in a Russian way” =)

M – ЭКЗАМЕН – ekzamyen – exam

  • F- ЭКОНОМИКА – ekonomika – economy
  • М – ЭКОНОМИСТ -ekonomist- economist
  • М- ЭКИПАЖ – ekipazh ( french word) – the crew
  • М- ЭКРАН – ekran ( fr) – screen in cinema hall
  • М- ЭКСПОРТ – eksport – export
  • N- ЭЛЕКТРИЧЕСТВО – elyektrichestvo- ELECTRICITY

The letter “Ю

ЮАНЬ – yuan-   Chinese currency


ЮГ – yug – South

ЮНЫЙ  (M)  ЮНАЯ (F)   (Pl. ) – very young people

ЮРИСТ -yurist – jurist, a man of law

ЮРИСПРУДЕНЦИЯ -yurisprudentsiya- JURISPRUDENCE , LAW in general



The letter “Я

The last letter in the Alphabet is “Я ” though “Я ” means in Russian “I , me, myself “. Yet at the last palace in the Alphabet =)

N- ЯБЛОКО – yabloko – sing.   ЯБЛОКИ pl

Fresh apples

M- ЯД – yad – poison

ЯЗЫК- as t0gue and as language – sing.   ЯЗЫКИ – pl.


ЯЙЦО  – yaitso – sing .   ЯЙЦА -pl. egg. anda.


ЯНВАРЬ – yanvah-   January

ЯЩЕРИЦА – yaschritsa –LIZARD . “chhipkali”( sing)   ЯЩЕРИЦЫ- pl.


ЯХТА  – yakhta – yacht ( sing )   ЯХТЫ ( pl.)


So it seems we have come to the end of the Alphabet. But it is not exactly so.

We missed one letter and a SOUND “Ы” which is very hard to explain in writing though I wrote about it as of a ” deeo throat i “. But unless one can hear the sound it is difficuly to pronounce it from the text. Why only ONE sound is totally different from others ? I think that it is due to the fact that it came from another family of languages. In Arabic there are 4 ( four) sounds like “h” or “kh”.. How to explain the differance on paper? One should hear all of them and there is no guaranty that an Indo-Europen can reproduce all this 4 versions of more or less the same sound.

We missed also two letters that DO NOT HAVE corresponding sounds. They are REALLY voiceless if taken alone. But in a word they can make letter to sound MORE SOFT. Or they ” divide” one word at two parts and the word is pronounced quite differently.

For example – there is expresion ” ПОЙДЕМ !” ( Let us go !) and the word  “ПОДЪЁМ !”( a military commad to a comany of sleeping privates in thir beds ) “Wake up and dress up FAST – in 45 secunds!” But the command MUST be short one and after a sergeant on a night duty in the morning shouts in a wild voice  “РОТА !!! ПОДЪЁМ !!! ”  – The company jumps from their beds and dresses up as if there were a fire in the barracs!


In 45 seconds everybody stands in line ! Because there was a SHORT command.


But there is NO word ” ПОДЁМ” . Only with “i” or a ” hard letter” Ъ in the milddle.

Either “ПОЙДЁМ (ПОГУЛЯТЬ) ”  or “РОТА ! ПОДЪЁМ!! ”

Naturally, the invitation for a girl to go for a walk will not be shouted at the top voice of a young man as it is done by a young man of the same age in the barracs =)

But we shall deal with these letters ” Ь ” soft and “Ъ ” hard a little later.

And, of course, there MUST BE  VIDEOS with all these sounds !