Russian Language Blog

Using the Instrumental Case, Part 2 Posted by on Apr 12, 2011 in language, Russian for beginners

«Дорогие читатели» [Dear readers], as we say in Russian: «Сколько лет, сколько зим!» [Long time, no see (literally it means “How many summers, how many winters”)]. «Простите меня» [Forgive me] for having such a long hiatus between posts–I’m sure you’re just dying to learn more about the instrumental case, right? This post is a continuation of Using the Instrumental Case, Part 1

«Творительный падеж» [The instrumental case] is used with the following verbs. The list is by no means exhaustive–if you think of a verb I’ve missed, please let me know in the comments.

  • «становиться/стать» [to become] — «Я стану профессором.» [I will become a professor.]
  • «заниматься» [to study] — «Я занимаюсь историей.» [I study history.]
  • «интересоваться/заинтересоваться» [to interest] — «Он интересуется музыкой.» [He is interested in music.]
  • «работать» [to work as] — «Он работает журналистом» [He works as a journalist.]
  • «болеть/заболеть» [to be sick/ill] — «Она болела гриппом.» [She had the flu.]
  • «прощаться/проститься с кем» [to say goodbye to someone] — «Михаил простился с Ольгой.» [Mikhail said goodbye to Olga.]
  • «говорить/поговорить с кем» [to talk with someone] — «Мы говорили с ним.» [We talked with him.]
  • «поздравлять/поздравить кого с чем» [to congratulate someone on something] — «Я поздравляю тебя с Новым годом.» [Happy New Year.]
  • «работать над чем» [to work on something] — «Он работает над соченением.» [He is working on the composition.]
  • «думать над чем» [to think about something] — «Над чем ты думаешь?» [What are you thinking about?]
  • a verb of motion + «за кем/чем» [to pick up or fetch someone/something] — «Мы поехали в аэропорт за Анной.» [We went to the airport to pick up Anna.]

«Верьте или не верьте» «Хотите верьте, хотите нет» [Believe it or not], there is still more remaining that I have to say about the instrumental case, which is why there will be a third part in this series later this week–I haven’t decided yet what day I will post it. Also, since it has been a year since «авиакатастрофа в Смоленске» [the plane crash in Smolensk], I am planning to write about that.

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Keep learning Russian with us!

Build vocabulary, practice pronunciation, and more with Transparent Language Online. Available anytime, anywhere, on any device.

Try it Free Find it at your Library
Share this:
Pin it

About the Author: Natalie

I'm Natalie and I love the Russian language and sharing my knowledge with others. I graduated from university with a dual degree in Russian language & literature and history.


  1. Delia:

    Dear Russian Blog:

    About the Instrumental Case: how about the verb to be быть in the Past and Future. Он был врачoм, она будет космонавтом. Они практически синонимы глагола “становиться”

  2. Delia:

    Other verbs are
    гордиться “to be proud of” Она гордиться своими детьми
    лечть(ся)”to treat with” Вpач лечил меня антибиотиками. Она лечилась антибиотиками.

  3. Delia:

    I don’t know how to correct a typo in my previous comment: Она ГОРДИТСЯ… no мягкий знак. Sorry about it!

  4. Delia:

    And one more comment. We usually say “Хотите верьте, хотите нет.”

  5. David Roberts:

    Служить is another one that springs to mind (how do you say “springs to mind” in Russian I wonder?). If you can say in English “he/she etc + verb +as + what they act/serve etc as”, I think you always use the instrumental for what comes after “as”

  6. Yelena:

    David, “springs to mind” in Russian is “прийти на ум” or “прийти в голову” as in “мне тут в голову (or на ум) такая идея пришла!” [an awesome idea just sprung to mind]. Another wonderful related expression is “промелькнула мысль” [idea flashed].

  7. Natalie:

    Delia: thanks for your comments. I mentioned using instrumental case after быть on my first post in the series. Thanks for the examples (and for correcting my ‘believe it or not’ expression).

  8. Natalie:

    Oh, and speaking of гордиться: whenever I hear that word, I think of that line from государственный гимн Российской Федерации [the national anthem of the Russian Federation] that goes: Славься, страна! Мы гордимся тобой! [Be glorious, our country! We are proud of you!]