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Lesson 2: Grammar
Nouns in the Russian language can have one of three genders: masculine, feminine and neuter.
Here are the main rules.
Nouns that end in nominative singular on consonant, -й or -ь are masculine nouns.
Examples are АВТОБУС(bus), ЧАЙ(tea) and УЧИТЕЛЬ(teacher).
Nouns that end in nominative singular on -а, -я or -ь are feminine nouns.
Examples are КУЛЬТУРА(culture), ГЕРМАНИЯ(Germany) and МАТЬ(mother).
Finally, nouns that end in nominative singular on -o or -e are neuter nouns.
Examples are ПОЛЕ(field) and ОКНО(window). Both have neuter gender.
Note that nouns that end on –ь, can be both feminine and masculine nouns. When you are learning a word, you should learn the gender of a noun if it ends on soft sign. A small help is that nouns that end on –ость, are feminine nouns.
These are grammatical genders and are used for transforming words in their right form when they are used. For example, although large majority of nouns designating male people have masculine grammatical gender, there are few exceptions:
ДЯДЯ = uncle
ПАПА = daddy
ДЕДУШКА = grandfather
МУЖЧИНА = man
It is essential to know the gender of a noun in Russian. It is the main information you need word noun declensions (or transformations) you will learn in the following lessons.
You have already seen several personal pronouns and with the introduction of gender it is appropriate to list all personal pronouns in nominative case.
As you can see, the second person in plural (You) is used when addressing a group of people, but is also used as the polite form when addressing a single person.
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