Russian Verb: Быть (To Be)

Written byAlina Sinitcyna

Russian people use the verb “to be” in future and past tenses, but present tense only for specific situations. They use a dash instead of the present tense form of the verb “to be” to make sentences.

For example:

Моя мать - врач

My mother is a doctor

However, past and future tenses have to be conjugated as it is shown in the following table.

Russian verb Быть (to be) conjugation

Imperfective AspectPerfective Aspect
Present Tense  
1st Person Singularесть 
2nd Person Singularесть 
3rd Person Singularесть 
1st Person Pluralесть 
2nd Person Pluralесть 
3rd Person Pluralесть 
Past Tense  
Future Tense  
1st Person SingularБудуПобуду
2nd Person SingularБудешьПобудешь
3rd Person SingularБудетПобудет
1st Person PluralБудемПобудем
2nd Person PluralБудетеПобудете
3rd Person PluralБудутПобудут
Command Form  
Subjunctive Mood  
Masculineбыл быпобыл бы
Feminineбыла быпобыла бы
Neuterбыло быпобыло бы
Pluralбыли быпобыли бы
Present Active Participleсущий 
Past Active Participleбывшийпобывший
Verbal Adverb (Gerund)будучипобыв

Sample sentences

Я часто бываю в Москве.

I am often in Moscow.

Собаки Был вместе с их хвосты между ног.

The dogs were running along with their tails between their legs.

Они будут в России в следующем месяце.

They will be in Russia the next month.
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