Russian Nouns: Overview


A noun is a word that identifies someone or something - a person, an animal, a thing, an abstract notion etc.

женщина - woman
кошка - cat
дом - house
успех - success

In English, nouns have two forms - singular and plural. In most cases, all you need to do is add an -s or -es to make the plural form, i.e. dog - dogs, car - cars, bus - buses.

In Russian, things are a bit more complex.

  • Nouns have two forms - Singular and Plural 
  • Nouns belong to the Masculine, Feminine, or Neuter Gender
  • Nouns belong to the First, Second, or Third Declension
  • Nouns have Six Grammatical Cases - Nominative, Genitive, Accusative, Dative, Instrumental, and Prepositional 

In this lesson, I will introduce you to Singular and Plural forms of nouns.

Declensions, Gender and Cases are covered more in-depth in the other lessons:

Declension of Nouns

Gender of Nouns

Cases of Nouns


Singluar and Plural Forms of Nouns


The table below illustrates how to make the Plural form of nouns in the Nominative case.

Please note that there are always exceptions that do not follow these rules. There are words that will have different endings, words that won't have a plural form and words that won't have a singular form.

consonants Ж, Ч, Ш, Щ нож ножи
consonant Й музей Й → И музеи
other consonants документ документы
А машина А → Ы машины
ГА, ЖА, КА, ХА, ЧА, ША, ЩА книга А → И книги
Я академия Я → И академии
МЯ время Я → ЕНА времена
О слово О → А слова
Е море Е → Я моря
Ь (masc noun) олень Ь → И олени
Ь (fem noun) кровать Ь → И кровати

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