Russian Grammar: Conjunction

Written byAlina Sinitcyna

Definition: A conjunction is word that belongs to Russian Grammar. It usually consists of one or more words. They connect or link other clauses, words, and phrases into a complete sentence. There are many kinds of conjunctions in Russian language, but the main are: subordinating conjunctions and coordinating conjunctions.

Coordinating Conjunctions

These conjunctions link sentences of equal value in a complex sentence. The most common coordinating conjunctions in Russian are the following.

but, howeverоднакоodnako
both.....andи ..... иi ..... i
neither...norни ... ниni ... ni
not only ...but alsoкак … так иkak … tak
not only ...but alsoне только … но иne tolko … no i


  • Coordinating conjunctions fall into the following subgroups:

  • Copulative.

  • Disjunctive.

  • Adversative.

  • The elements connected by a coordinating conjunction must be equal and parallel. That is, the connected words, phrases, or clauses must perform an identical function in the sentence, e.g., as subjects or objects of the same verb, or modifiers of the same word. Examples:

  • Luck and Ann understands English well.

  • **Удача и Энн хорошо понимает по-английски. **

  • Udacha i Enn horosho ponimaet po-angliiski.

  • They speak and read Russian.

  • Они говорят и читают по русскому.

  • Oni govoryat i chitayut po russkomu.

Copulative Conjunctions

A copulative coordinating conjunction connects two or more elements that have something in common.

both … and …и … и …i ... i ...
both … as well as …как … так и …kak ... tak i ...
not only … but also …не только …, но иne tolko ..., no i
neither … nor …ни … ни …ni ... ni ...

**Examples: **

  • They'll go to Boston and Chicago in the winter.

  • Они пойдут в Бостон и Чикаго в зимний период.

  • Oni poidut v Boston i Chikago v zimnii period.

  • We will drink both this tea and coffee.

  • Мы будем пить и этот чай и кофе.

  • My budem pit i etot chai i kofe.

  • They discussed new discoveries in physics, as well as the advanced views of modern philosophers.

  • они обсудили новые открытия в физике, так и передовые взгляды современных философов.

  • Oni obsudili novye otkrytiya v fizike, tak i peredovye vzglyady sovremennyh filosofov.

  • Once upon a time there lived an old man and an old woman.

  • Жили-были старик да старуха.

  • Zhili-byli starik da staruha.

Disjunctive Conjunctions

The disjunctive coordinating conjunctions present alternatives.

either … or …не то … не то …ne to ... ne to ...
now … now …то … то …to ... to ...
either … or …или … или …ili ... ili ...


  • Who will arrive this evening, Luck or Lucy?

  • Кто придет в этот вечер, Удача или Люси?

  • Kto pridet v etot vecher , Udacha ili Lyusi?

  • Either Lucy or Luck will arrive tonight.

  • или Люси, или Удача придет сегодня вечером.

  • ili Lyusi, ili Udacha pridet segodnya vecherom.

  • The children heard a strange sound, either a yell or a sob.

  • Дети услышали странный звук, не то вопить не то рыдать.

  • Deti uslyshali strannyi zvuk, ne to vopit ne to rydat.

  • Now he looks out the window, now he paces the room.

  • То он смотрит в окно, то оно ходит по комнате.

  • To on smotrit v okno, to ono hodit po komnate.

Adversative Conjunctions

An adversative coordinating conjunction joins elements that seem contradictory or antithetical to one another.

but, howeverодна коodna ko


  • The heroine was young, but she was strong and brave.

  • Героиня была молодой, но сильной и храброй.

  • Geroinya byla molodoi, no silnoi i hrabroi.

  • She can't come, however her best friend come.

  • Она не может прийти, однако ее лучший друг пришел.

  • Ona ne mozhet priiti , odnako yee luchshii drug prishel.

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