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Cyrillic Russian Alphabet

 
Sts. Cyril and Methodius

The contemporary Russian alphabet goes back to medieval Cyrillic, invented by Sts. Cyril and Methodius, the 9th century missionary monks who first brought Christianity to the Slavonic tribes. The Cyrillic alphabet was based on their native Greek alphabet with an addition of several more letters. The original Cyrillic was later modified.

In its modern form the Russian alphabet exists since 1918. The majority of languages used in the former Soviet Union as well as some others were elaborated on the basis of this alphabet.

The Russian alphabet consists of 33 letters: 21 consonants, 10 vowels, and two letters without sound - soft sign and hard sign. Click on the Russian letter in the left-hand column of the table to hear its name:

 

Russian letter

Letter's name
in Russian

Pronounced
as

Transliteration

Vowel

"ah"

a in car

a

x

"beh"

b in bit

b

-

"veh"

v in vine

v

-

"geh"

g in go

g

-

"deh"

d in do

d

-

"yeh"

ye in yet

ye or e

x

"yo"

yo in yolk

yo

x

"zheh"

s in pleasure

zh

-

"zeh"

z in zoo

z

-

"ee"

ee in see

i

x

"ee kratkoyeh"
"short ee"

y in boy

i or y or j

-

"kah"

k in kitten

k

-

"ehl"

l in lamp

l

-

"ehm"

m in map

m

-

"ehn"

n in not

n

-

"oh"

o in fork

o

x

"peh"

p in pet

p

-

"ehr"

r in roll

r

-

"ehs"

s in see

s

-

"teh"

t in tip

t

-

"oo"

oo in boot

u

x

"ehf"

f in face

f

-

"khah"

h in house

kh or h

-

"tseh"

ts in sits

ts

-

"cheh"

ch in chip

ch

-

"shah"

sh in shut

sh

-

"schyah"

sh in sheep

sch

-

"tvyordiy znahk"
"hard sign"

a separation sign

'

-

"i"

i in ill

y

x

"myagkeey znahk"
"soft sign"

indicates
the softness of consonants

'

-

"eh"

e in met

e

x

"yoo"

u in use

yu

x

"yah"

ya in yard

ya

x

 

 

 

 

 
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