Categories: "America"

Гавайи

November 3rd, 2008 — posted by Don

The Russian word for Hawaii is Гавайи, and when you decline it, it has only plural endings, no singular:

NomГавайи
AccГавайи
GenГавайев
PreГавайях
DatГавайям
InsГавайями

Those are the forms to use if you are discussing the Big Island itself. If you are talking about the whole state or the whole chain of islands, then it's best to call them Гавайские острова The Hawaiian Islands. (Notice that in Russian we capitalize the first word but not the second.)

Because we are dealing with an island, we use the prepositions на and с to mean to/at and from:

Мы с Зоей полетим на Гавайи на медовый месяц. У моего друга там есть домик. Так можно отдыхать почти бесплатно. Нельзя ведь начинать новую жизнь с излишних расходов! Zoya and I will go to Hawaii for our honeymoon. My friend has a little house there. That way we can vacation practically for free. After all, you shouldn't start your new life with excessive expenses!
С Гавайев вернёмся в Финикс, где я её уже устроил на работу на завод, на котором делают пристяжные ремни для самолётных сидений. From Hawaii we will return to Phoenix, where I have already found her a job at a factory that makes airplane seatbelts.

The ending -йи is not typical for a Russian noun in the nominative, so the Russians are still slightly unsure of how to deal with it. Some people and references treat Гавайи as an indeclinable noun, but the current advice of style guides is to decline it.