Russian numbers

Russian number

Find out which bus number goes to the station you need. Ask how much a carton of milk costs. Say how old you are or give your phone number. To do this, you need to know numerals.

How to count to 10

The first ten digits are the most important because they come at the very beginning and you need them to build all other numerals.

  • 0 / ноль [nol’],
  • 1 / один [adin],
  • 2 / два [dva],
  • 3 / три [tri],
  • 4 / четыре [chit̀yre],
  • 5 / пять [pyat’],
  • 6 / шесть [shest’],
  • 7 / семь [sem’],
  • 8/ восемь [v̀osim’],
  • 9 / девять [devit’],
  • 10 / десять [desit’].

When the numbers 1 and 2 come before a noun, they change the ending depending on the gender.

Один [adin] стул, два [dva] стула are masculine.

Одна [adna] кошка, две [dve] кошки are feminine.

Одно [adǹo] дело, два [dva] дела are neuter.

How to form tens

To form 20 and 30, add “дцать” to the ones:

  • 20 / двадцать [dv̀atsat’],
  • 30 / тридцать [tr̀itsat’].

The number 40 and 90 are different from the other tens, you just need to remember them:

  • 40 / сорок [s̀orak],
  • 90 / девяносто [diviǹosta].

Numbers from 50 to 80 are formed according to the same principle — “десят” is added to digits 5, 6, 7 and 8:

  • 50 / пятьдесят [pit’dis̀yat],
  • 60 / шестьдесят [shist’dis̀yat],
  • 70 / семьдесят [sem’dis̀yat],
  • 80 / восемьдесят [vosim’dis̀yat].

The numbers between the round tens are formed in the same way — ten + one:

  • 21 / двадцать один [dv̀atsat’ adin],
  • 46 / сорок шесть [s̀orak shest’],
  • 53 / пятьдесят три [pit’dis̀yat tri],
  • 94 / девяносто четыре [diviǹosta chit̀yre].

How to form hundreds and onwards

You need the number 100 (сто [sto]) to form hundreds but it will be slightly modified. To get numbers from 200 to 400, you need to add “сти / ста” to the unit, and for numbers from 500 to 900, add “сот”:

  • 200 / двести [dv̀esti],
  • 300 / триста [tr̀ista],
  • 400 / четыреста [chit̀yrista],
  • 500 / пятьсот [pit’s̀ot],
  • 600 / шестьсот [shys̀ot],
  • 700 / семьсот [sim’s̀ot],
  • 800 / восемьсот [vasim’s̀ot],
  • 900 / девятьсот [divit’s̀ot].

To build a complex number, connect hundreds, tens and ones in order. For example, 297 = двести девяносто семь [dv̀esti diviǹosta sem ’].

Thousands are formed in a manner similar to English. Add units to the word “тысяча” (1000 [t̀ysicha]:

  • 2000 /  две тысячи [dve t̀ysichi],
  • 3000 / три тысячи [tri t̀ysichi],
  • 4000 / четыре тысячи [chet̀yre t̀ysichi].

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All of the above numerals were quantitative, but you will use ordinal numbers in your speech just as often.

To form ordinal numbers of the first ten, add an ending to the base, and the ending will vary depending on the gender and number. In the masculine gender, these are “-ой”, “-ый” и “-ий”, in the feminine gender — “-ая”, in the neuter gender — “-ое”, “-ье”, in the plural — “-ые”, “-ьи”.

  • 1st / первый (первая, первое, первые) [p̀ervyj],
  • 2nd / второй (вторая, второе, вторые) [vtar̀oy],
  • 3rd / третий (третья, третье, третьи) [tr̀etiy],
  • 4th / четвертый (четвертая, четвертое, четвертые) [chitv̀ertyj],
  • 5th / пятый (пятая, пятое, пятые) [pỳatyj],
  • 6th / шестой (шестая, шестое, шестые) [shist̀oy],
  • 7th / седьмой (седьмая, седьмое, седьмые) [sid’m̀oy],
  • 8th / восьмой (восьмая, восьмое, восьмые) [vas’m̀oy],
  • 9th / девятый (девятая, девятое, девятые) [divỳatyj],
  • 10th / десятый (десятая, десятое, десятые) [disỳatyj].

Ordinal numbers in the range 11–19 are formed by ending “-ый” and losing the soft sign (ь), for example, двенадцатый [dv’iǹatsatyj], шестнадцатый [shysǹatsatyj]. In complex ordinal numbers, only the last digit changes, for example, 253 / двести пятьдесят третий [dvesti pit’dis̀yat tr̀etiy].

Though there are so many numbers, it is not difficult to remember them — when you understand the system, you will easily understand and learn Russian numbers. 

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