How to read Cyrillic letters

a.k.a. “How to read those weird Russian quibbles”. Last updated 30th of November 2016.

Lesson 1 is so easy to understand, that I’ll head straight to it without bothering with an article introduction.

Some Cyrillic letters mean the same as the Latin ones.

А д Е К М О Т і

These mean Á, d, É, K, M, O, T, and i.

Many other letters have the same shape as Latin letters, but mean different things.

З → Z
Э → E
6 → B
В → V
Ь → Consonant shortener
Ы → Y (as a wovel)
Ъ → Consonant sharpener
Б → B
С → S
Ё → Yō
Є → E
Н → N
Ї → Y
И → I
Й → Y (as a consonant)
П → P
Р → R
Я → Ya
Ц → ts
Ш → sh
Щ → -sh’ch-
Х → KH in Russian (H otherwise)
У → U

You can already begin to read Cyrillic words now, as if it was a code task in a childrens’ activity book!! Come on, try it out!

And the last set of Russian Cyrillic letters, has used shapes that look very unique to a Westener’s eyes.

Д → D
Л → L
Ф → F
Г → G (Hh for Ukrainian only)

Ж → zh
Ю → Yu
Ч → ch

Lesson 1.5 is about when Russian is written in fine italics. This adds differently shaped letters for many of the above letters.

т → T
и → I
й → Y (as a consonant)
п → P
г → G
в → V
g → D
ẟ → B

Lesson 2 will be about the unique letters that you can encounter in southern Yugoslavia, plus a select few of Kazakhstan’s letters.

Do not begin Lesson 2 unless you have already mastered Lessons 1 and 1.5 by heart.

h → h
Ү → Y (as a wovel)

Ī → G
Ј → Y (as a consonant)
Ќ → dtjh
Қ → Q
Ө → Ö

Ѕ → dz

Џ → dzh
Ꚋ → dj
Ћ → tsh

ӣ → P
ш with a stroke above → T


How to read Cyrillic letters

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