Talking about languages

  1. How we name a language in Russian depends on which verb we use with it.
  2. The name of a language in Russian consists of two words: an adjective which describes the language, and the word язык (language):
    английский язык, русский язык, французский язык.
  3. We use this form to express the name of a language with the verbs знать and изучать:
    Я знаю русский язык.
    Мы изучаем английский язык.
  4. We ask which language someone knows or studies with the question word какой or какие:
    Какой язык вы знаете?
    Каие языки вы изучаете?
  5. With verbs that indicate a language skill (things one can do with, or in a language), we use an adverbial form of the name of the language:
    по-русски, по-английски, по-испански, по-французски.
  6. The name of the language here looks similar to the adjectival form, except it's preceded with the prefix по- and is missing the letter at the end.
  7. We use this form for the name of the language with the verbs говорить, читать, понимать, писать:
    Она читает по-русски.
    Мы понимаем по-испански.
    Они пишут по-французски.
    Вы говорите по-немецки?
  8. To ask in which language one can read, understand, write, or speak, we use the expression На каком языке, or На каких языках.

Exercises: 0041g, 0672g, 0726g
Copyright ©. George Mitrevski. mitrevski@pelister.org