Russian Language Blog

Meet Your New Friends: Russian Adverbs Posted by on Sep 23, 2014 in language, when in Russia



The last few mornings have been relatively chilly, at least in the state of Michigan. As I was getting my fall coat out of the closet, it occurred to me that now is the perfect time to do a post on adverbs. “I don’t see the connection,” – you might say. Well, let me explain. In Russian, adverbs can be very handy in helping one express the state of their body and mind.

Phrase/sentence structure is a bit different in the Russian and English languages. While changing the pronoun in English requires you to change the verb (I am/he is/they are), this is not the case with similar phrases in Russian because the verb is simply not present in many instances. Don’t try to explain the differences too hard, or you might pop a vein J . My goal for this post  is to help you learn and hopefully utilize these Russian speech patterns in the future.

The pattern we will be working on today is мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им  + adverb.

Мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им are Russian personal pronouns, or a specific form of Russian personal pronouns to be exact. You will frequently use this form of Russian personal pronouns in combination with adverbs or reflexive verbs.

Just in case, here is a link to the table on Russian pronouns

Here we go:

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им холодно – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are cold

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им жарко – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are hot

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им страшно –  I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are scared

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им можно – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are allowed  

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им плохо –  I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are not feeling well 

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им хорошо – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are feeling well or comfortable

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им удобно –  I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are comfortable

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им грустно – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are sad

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им одиноко – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are lonely 

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им скучно – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are bored 

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им обидно – I am/you are/we are/you are plural/she is/he is/they are offended 

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им смешно – I/you/we/you plural/she/he/they find it funny

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им трудно – It is hard for me/you/us/you plural/her/him/them

мне/тебе/нам/вам/ей/ему/им легко – It is easy for me/you/us/you plural/her/him/them 

Below are some practice sentences to help you remember these simple phrases. I challenge you to share your translated version (in the comment section)!


Мне холодно под этим одеялом. 

Судя по поту на его лице, ему жарко.

Конечно ей страшно оставаться одной. 

Мне можно одну конфету после еды

Ты такая бледная. Тебе плохо?

Мне тут очень хорошо

Вам удобно? 

Мне грустно, потому что ты уехал. 

Мне одиноко без тебя

Игровая приставка сломалась, и теперь им скучно. 

Мне обидно, что вы не заходите. 

Ему смешно, а мне плакать хочется. 

Им всегда трудно, они постоянно жалуются. 

Тебе легко говорить, у тебя нет маленьких детей. 





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About the Author: Jenya

Born in Russia, I spent the first twenty years of my life in Orenburg, Russia and Mogilev, Belarus. For the last eleven years, I've lived in New Hampshire and Michigan, US. While I continue to absorb and adapt to American culture, I am always thrilled to share my Russian heritage with those who find it interesting. Travel, photography and art play a special part in my life. Twitter: @iamnx2u


  1. David Roberts:

    Excellent! I’ll try your exercise without looking anything up:

    I’m cold under this blanket (would this be interpreted as a request for another blanket or as a hint that the interlocutor might like to try and generate a bit more warmth?)

    Judging by the look of his face he’s feeling hot

    Of course she’s scared to be left alone

    Can I have a sweet (British word for candy) after the meal?

    You’re pale – are you not well?

    I’m absolutely fine (not sure whether тут needs translating)

    Are you comfortable?

    I’m sad because you’ve gone away

    I’m lonely without you

    The play-station’s broken and now I’m bored (guessing at Игровая приставка)

    I’m offended that don’t pop in

    He thinks its funny but I feel like crying

    Им всегда трудно, они постоянно жалуются – will have to look up постоянно жалуются.

    It’s easy for youto talk, you’ve not got young kids

    Your sentence “As I was getting my fall coat out of the closet” is a good illustration of how British and American English are diverging! Native Russian speakers might like to have a go at putting it into British English.

    Thanks again for this very uesful post!

    • Jenya:

      @David Roberts David, great job! With the exception of a couple of little things, you pretty much nailed every sentence on the head. The sentence “Мне тут хорошо” literally means “I feel great/very comfortable here (in this particular place, like your summer cottage for instance).” Perhaps, being a bit more descriptive on my part would have made the job easier 🙂 . “Им всегда трудно, они постоянно жалуются” means “They are constantly struggling, they always complain.”

  2. мама:

    Замечательно, моя дорогая!
    Great job, my dear!

  3. Daniel Jenkins:

    Brilliant layout to aid study.