The Nominative Case of Russian Nouns

Posted on August 25th, 2010

The Nominative Case of Russian NounsAs you probably already know Russian grammar requires for all nouns to be in a particular case in a sentence. There are six cases in Russian: Nominative, Genitive, Dative, Accusative, Instrumental and Prepositional. Today we will talk about the nominative case.

You can also read more about Russian cases and watch a video lesson in the article – Cases of the Russian Nouns & The Nominative Case. 

The Nominative Case of Russian Nouns

Although I love Oxford Russian Grammar And Verbs by Oxford University Press and I do sincerely believe that it’s a perfect Russian grammar guide for all levels, the definition of the nominative case in it might be a little hard to remember for the beginners. So, I think it would be easier to remember that the nominative case in Russian language is a dictionary form of nouns. In other words, every noun you see in a dictionary (in a singular form) is in the nominative Case. Easy, isn’t it?

To make it even easier you need to remember that nominative case is used for a grammatical subject of a sentence.
Here are a couple of examples:
Лондон – очень красивый город.
[LON-dan O-chyen’ kra-SI-veey GO-rad ]
London is a beautiful city.

Where noun London is in the nominative case.
Я люблю делать фотографии.
[YA LYOOB-lyoo DYE-lat’ fa-tag-RA-fii]
I love taking pictures.

Pronoun I in this sentence is in the nominative case.
About the nominative case of the pronouns you can read here.

Luckily, the only time you need to change the ending of a noun in the nominative case is to form the plural. Let’s take a look at how noun endings change when forming the plural. If you would like to learn about how to form the plural of the nouns in the nominative case in Russian, watch these two Russian grammar lessons:

Feminine nouns ending in

1)  a ,  replace – a with – ы (only after г, к, х, ж, ш, щ, ч replace with- и)
Example (first word in singular and second in plural):
Лампа – Лампы
Кошка – Кошки

2) soft sign – ь,  replace - ь with – и
Мышь – Мыши

3)  ия, replace – ия with – ии
Талия – талии

Neuter nouns ending in

1) o replace with –a
Облако – облака

2)  ие replace with - ия
Соревнование  – соревнования

When masculine nouns are ending in

1) Consonant you’ll need to add to their ending  (only after г, к, х, ж, ш, щ, ч replace with- и)
Телефон – телефоны
Нож – Ножи

2) soft sign –ь, replace it with –и
Конь – кони

That’s all for today!

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