The words некто (a certain person), нечто (a certain thing), некоторый (some, certain), несколько (some, several), ктo-то (somebody), чтo-то (something), ктo-нибудь (anybody), чтo-нибудь (anything), какoй-то (some kind of), кoе-ктo (somebody) are the indefinite pronouns. They refer to indefinite or unknown things, people, features or quantities. The pronunciation samples for these pronouns are given below.
Let's consider some examples:
Use the table below to practice your pronunication of the Russian indefinite pronouns.
|Audio||Russian word||English translation||Pronunciation|
|---||некто||a certain person||NYEK-tah|
|---||нечто||a certain thing||NYEHSH-tah|
|---||какoй-то||some kind of||kah-KOY-tah|
The indefinite pronouns are formed from the interrogative pronouns with the help of such prefixes as не-, кое- and suffixes -то, -либо, -нибудь.
Note, that the suffixes -то, -либо, -нибудь and the prefix кое- are written with a hyphen. On the contrary, the pronouns with the prefix не are always written as a single word. The prefix кое loses its hyphen when it is separated from a pronoun by a preposition, for example:
The good news is that the indefinite pronouns некто and нечто do not change by cases. They are always used in the nominative. The rest of the indefinite pronouns change like their interrogative counterparts.
The indefinite pronouns with the prefix кое- are used to talk about things known to the speaker but unfamiliar to the listener.
The indefinite pronouns formed with the suffixes -то and -нибудь are the most common ones. There is a difference in the meaning of these two suffixes. The suffix -то is used to talk about people, things and features which are real and definite, but not familiar to the speaker.
The suffix -нибудь is used when people and things are indefinite or not chosen by the speaker from several possible ones.
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TODAY'S STREET SIGN
Russian: Вход со двора
English: Entrance from the backyard