Russian Grammar Video Lesson: Personal Pronouns

Posted on December 5th, 2012

Russian Personal PronounsWelcome to our third Russian Grammar video lesson! Here are the first two grammar lessons, if you would like to catch up:

Gender of Russian Nouns. Part 1.
Gender of Russian Nouns. Part 2.

In Russian as well as in English personal pronouns are used to replace nouns that refer to people.

For example, instead of
Дети любят конфеты (Children like sweets)

You can say:
Они любят конфеты (They like sweets)

Or instead of:
Саша смотрит телевизор (Sasha is watching TV)

You can say:
Он смотрит телевизор (He is watching TV)

In this video lesson we will talk about personal pronouns in Russian and discuss the difference between pronouns “Вы” and “Ты”:

Here is the table of the personal pronouns in Russian:


Russian (Singular) Pronunciation
English Version Russian (Plural) Pronunciation
English Version
Я [YA] I Мы [MEE] We
Ты [TEE] You Вы [VEE] You
Он, она, оно
[ON, a-NA, a-NO] He, she, it Они [a-NI] They


Interesting Fact

It is polite to use the plural form of the personal pronoun You in Russian – Вы when
addressing someone:

  • you have just met
  • you don’t know very well
  • who is older then you are
  • has a higher status, title, etc. then you
  • or anyone else whom you would like to show your respect!

That is exactly right! By using Вы form you are showing your respect to that person. If you feel comfortable enough, you can offer them to start using a – ты form or you can wait until they offer you to switch to ты.

How to Offer Someone to Switch to the Informal “Ты” in Russian

Here is how you can offer to someone to switch to “ты”:


– Может перейдём на «ты»? [Mo-zhyet pye-ryey-DYOM na TEE?]
If you translate the sentence above into English would sound something like:
– Maybe we could switch to (start using) “TI”?


– Перейдём на «ты»?
[pe-ryey-DYOM na TEE?]
More or less word for word translation into English will be:
– Should we switch to “ti”?


– Можно на «ты»? [MOZH-no na TEE?]
Translation into English:
– May I address you by “ti”?

When they agree, you can start using form “ты” when addressing them.

For example, instead of:
Как вы поживаете? (How are you?)

You can say:
Как ты поживаешь? (How are you?)

This is all for today, thanks for watching. If you have any questions or suggestions, please leave a comment below. Also, make sure to subscribe to my Russian4real YouTube channel to learn Russian with me! Have fun learning Russian!


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