Category: "Den"

День (часть третья)

by Don  

Although normally in Russian you refer to the days of the week using nouns like понедельник and среда, there is an alternate way to do it. You make an adjective out of the day of the week and then combine it with the word день ‘day’. It is not as common as simply using the nouns, but it is still possible. Here is a list of the nouns and their corresponding adjectives:


Note carefully that there is no adjectival equivalent for среда, and notice also that the adjective from суббота is soft. When translating the phrases into English, simply use the noun. Here are a few examples:

Это был воскресный день, но «мусора» не отдыхают. (source) It was a Sunday, but cops don't get days off.
Псковский почтамт планирует выдавать пенсии по воскресным дням. (source) The Pskov main post office is planning to distribute pension money on Sundays.
Ребята, сегодня последний пятничный день осени. (source) Guys, today is the last Friday of fall.
Наступил четверговый день. (source) Thursday arrived.

It would be a mistake to think that all the adjectives are equally acceptable. The phrase «воскресный день» is very common. The next most common is «субботний день». The others you will find in good dictionaries, but they are encountered very rarely. And why is there no adjective from среда? Hard to say. Sometimes in language you have to give up and say, “That's just the way it is.”

День (часть вторая)

by Don  

Previously we discussed день ‘day’ in the nominative/accusative singular. What about the other forms? Here's where it gets tricky. The -е- is a fleeting vowel, which means any time you add a grammatical ending to the stem, the -е- drops out. The -ь at the end makes the stem soft, but it also drops out when endings are added, and the endings are always soft, so the declension turns out like this:


Notice that except in the nominative/accusative singular, the д is immediately followed by н, which is tricky for us Americans to pronounce. It is a nasally-released soft [d]. In other words, you make the soft [d] sound, but then you let no breath out through the mouth, releasing the breath through the nose as you say the [n]. Here are a few sample sentences.

Я не хочу говорить о том дне. I don't want to talk about that day.
Всё должно быть готово к тому дню. Everything must be ready by that day.
С того дня мы с ней ни разу не виделись. Since that day she and I haven't seen each other even once.
Мне было так грустно, что я сидел дома целыми днями. I was so sad that I stayed at home for days at a time.

День (часть первая)

by Don  

The Russian word for day is день. Since it is an incredibly common word, we are going to talk about it quite a few times. Today we will start with something simply. День is an inanimate masculine noun, so it's accusative case form is the same as its nominative form. That's fortunate because we mostly use the word in the nominative and accusative case. Here are some examples of it in the nominative:

— Какой сегодня день?
— Сегондя четверг.
“What day is today?”
“Today is Thursday.”
— Какой вчера был день?
— Вчера была среда.
“What day was it yesterday?”
“Yesterday was Wednesday.”
— Какой завтра будет день?
— Завтра будет пятница.
“What day is tomorrow?”
“Tomorrow is Friday.”
— Какой сегодня день?
— Сегодня дождливый день.
— Нет, нет. Я хочу сказать, какой сегодня день недели?
— Ах, понял. Сегодня четверг.
— Я думаю, ты меня хорошо понял в первый раз. Ты просто любишь доставать.
“What day is it?”
“It's a rainy day.”
“No, no. I mean what day of the week is it?”
“Oh, now I understand. Today is Thursday.”
“I think you understood me fine the first time. You just like to annoy me.”

You will remember that to say “on Monday” or “on Tuesday”, you have to use the preposition в + accusative in Russian. Similarly, to say “on that day” in Russian you say «в тот день» or «в этот день». Oddly enough, in English we usually leave out the “on” when combining it with “that day,” so in translation you will have to remember to add it in:

Я помню, когда Петя в первый раз поцеловал меня. В тот день я очень скучала по семье. Он увидел мою грусть и решил отвлечь мои мысли. Этот неожиданный поцелуй так поразил меня, что я почти неделю не думала ни о маме ни о папе. I remember when Peter kissed me for the first time. That day I really missed my family. He saw my sadness and decided to distract my thoughts. That unexpected kiss stunned me so that for nearly a week I didn't even think of my mom and dad.
Я хочу рассказать тебе о том, как я познакомился с президентом США. В тот день я надел новый костюм-тройку и новый галстук. Я очень нервничал, но когда он пожал мне руку, он поговорил со мной просто и дружелюбно, как будто бы я был его коллегой, а не иностранцем с Камчатки. I want to tell you how I met the President of the USA. That day I had put on a new three-piece suit and a new tie. I was really nervous when he shook my hand, but he spoke with me simply and kindly, as if I were a colleague of his instead of a foreigner from Kamchatka.