During this lesson we are going to speak about Personal Pronouns.
Pronouns are words which can be used in the place of nouns so that you don’t have to repeat the nouns.
Have a look at the personal pronouns in Russian that correspond to English ones:
|ты||you (singular and informal)||вы||you (plural or formal)|
You've certainly noticed that there're two different you in Russian (exactly like in French or German). We generally use вы when we talk to strangers, or people we'd like to be very polite with (a person you've just met; people older than you are; a person who has a higher status, title or anyone else whom you would like to show your respect). The respectful form begins with a capital letter Вы in personal letters and official papers (addressee is definite), and questionnaires (addressee is indefinite). We use ты with relatives, close friends, people we know well or children. Keep in mind that these are just general rules, and even native speakers often doubt whether they should use ты or вы. If you aren't sure, it's safer to use вы until you're told to use ты or until the other person says ты to you.
You must keep in mind that он, она, оно do not always mean he, she, it; rather they simply reflect the gender of the noun they replace. So, an English-speaker would refer to a chair as it and a room as it. A Russian, however, refers to a chair (стул) as он and a room (комната) as она because стул requires masculine agreement and комната requires feminine.
All personal pronouns are changed according to six cases. Read about this in our further lessons)
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