Russian adverbs

Here's a summary of Russian adverbs. We explain how to use and form Russian adverbs with examples. As part of this, we study how to use adverbs of place and adverbs of time.

Use of Russian adverbs

Like in English, adverbs in Russian describe verbs, adjectives, as well as other adverbs. For example:

  • Я хорошо плаваю. = I swim well.
  • Сегодня она говорит очень тихо. = She is speaking very quietly today.

Unlike in English, Russian adverbs are also used in sentences where the subject has no gender or number, replacing the clause, “it is + adjective.” For example:

  • Курить вредно для вашего здоровья. = To smoke is bad for your health.
  • Мне плохо. = I don’t feel well.
  • Вам грустно? = Are you sad?

Forming Russian adverbs

Usually Russian adverbs are formed from their corresponding adjective.

For adjectives ending in -ый/-ий, add an -о.

  • хороший → хорошо
  • высокий → высоко
  • шумный → шумно
  • горячий → горячо
  • ясный → ясно

For adjectives ending in -ний, add an -е.

  • крайний → крайне
  • средний → средне

For adjectives ending in -скай /-цкий, add an -и

  • варварский → варварски

Sometimes the prefix по- must be added to certain adverbs

  • русский → по-русски
  • детский → по-детски
  • взрослый → по-взрослому

Adverbs of place

Adverbs of place answer the questions где? (where?), куда? (where to?), откуда? (from where?) an action or movement are taking place.

Common Russian adverbs of place:


  • где = where
  • здесь =here
  • там = there
  • справа = on the right
  • слева = on the left


  • куда = to where
  • сюда =to here
  • туда = to there
  • направо = to the right
  • налево = to the left


  • откуда = from where
  • отсюда = from here
  • оттуда = from there
  • справо = on the right
  • слево = on the left

Adverbs of place with uncertainty

The particle -то conveys uncertainty about the exact place or direction of an action

  • Саша, думаю, мы должны куда-то идти. = Now, Sasha, I believe we have someplace to be.
  • Он живёт где-то в Москве. = He lives somewhere in Moscow.

The particle -нибудь conveys a general sense of direction, or one of an array of options.

  • Давай поедем куда-нибудь. = Let's go somewhere.
  • Будет лучше пойти отдохнуть где-нибудь немного. = Might be best to go somewhere for a little while and rest.

The particle кoe- is used when the speaker knows the exact place or direction involved but does not want to talk about it specifically.

  • Koe-где в этой комнате спрятан ключ. Найдите его. = There is a key hidden somewhere in this room. Find it.

Adverbs of time

Adverbs are used to ask, tell, and describe time. For example:

  • когда = when
  • с каких пор = since when
  • как долго = for how long
  • сколько времени = how long
  • как часто = how often
  • ежеминутно = minutely (every minute)
  • ежечасно = hourly (every hour)
  • ежедневно = daily
  • ежемесячно = monthly
  • ежегодно = annually
  • когда-то = once
  • когда-нибудь = some day
  • (не)давно = (not) long, long ago
  • (не)долго = (not) long, long time
  • (не)надолго = (not) for long, for a long time
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