Russian Vocabulary (and Wisdom)

How to say "to want" in Russian

This Russian word is one of the top 1000 words in Russian. The complete list of most common Russian words is available here.


Meaning: to want, to like, to mean, be about, to desire

Pronunciation: [khah-TYEHT']

Part of speech: verb (imperfective aspect)

Rank: #88 (see frequency list)

 Example sentences:
  • Я хочу спать.
  • I want to sleep.
  • Делайте всё, что хотите.
  • Do anything you like. (polite)
  • Что вы хотите?
  • What do you want? (What would you like?)
  • Он не хочет помогать.
  • He won't help. (He doesn't want to help.)
  • Она не хочет никого слушать.
  • She won't listen to anyone. (She doesn't want to listen to anyone)
  • Мне хочется спать.
  • I am sleepy. (reflexive form, lit: To me want sleep)
  • Я хочу пить.
  • I'm thirsty. (I want to drink.)
  • Что вы хотите этим сказать?
  • What do you mean? (What do you want to say by that?)
  • Он не хотел вмешиваться.
  • He didn't mean to interfere.
  • Если хотите, то позвоните мне завтра.
  • Call me tomorrow if you like. (polite)
  • Хотите -- верьте, хотите -- нет.
  • Believe it or not (as you wish).
  • Ты слишком многого хочешь!
  • You want too much! (very familiar, reproach)
  • Я очень хочу добиться успеха.
  • I look forward to becoming successful.
  • Я хочу тебя.
  • I want you. (familiar, sexual connotation)

 Idioms and set expressions:
  • Как хотите! = Just as you like!
  • хочешь не хочешь = like it or not
  • хотеть пить = to be thirsty
  • хотеть есть = to be hungry
  • очень хотеть = to look forward to; to wish badly; be anxious (to do something)
 Proverbs and sayings:
  • Хотеть не вредно.
  • Wishing has no effect.
  • Хотеть не вредно, вредно не хотеть.
  • Не begins to die that quits his desires.
  •  literal  To want is not harmful, it's harmful to not want.
  • В своём доме как хочу, так и ворочу.
  • My house is my castle.
  • Хочу -- половина могу.
  • When there is will, there is a solution.
  •  literal  [I] want is half of [I] can.
  • Через нехочу.
  • If it is a duty it ought to be done.
  •  literal  Through I-don't-want.
  • Что хочу, то и ворочу.
  • And that's it!
  •  literal  What I want, that I turn.
 Verb conjugation:

Present Tense

I хочу́
you (singular) хо́чешь
he, she, it хо́чет
we хоти́м
you (plural) хоти́те
they хотя́т

Past Tense

I, you (singular), he хоте́л
she хоте́ла
it хоте́ло
we, you (plural), they хоте́ли

Future Simple Tense

The imperfective verb хотеть is not used in the Future Simple Tense. Use the perfective verb захотеть instead.

Future Compound Tense

I буду хоте́ть
you (singular) будешь хоте́ть
he, she, it будет хоте́ть
we будем хоте́ть
you (plural) будете хоте́ть
they будут хоте́ть

Imperative Mood (Command Form)

you (singular) хоти́
you (plural) хоти́те

View full conjugation table for the verb pair хотеть/захотеть

Phrase recordings: Copyright(c) 2011 All rights reserved.
Word recordings: Copyright(c) 2006 Streit Goulnara, Streit Eric, Vion Nicolas. Copyright(c) 2007 S. Sakhno, N. Vion. Distributed under CC-BY.

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Russian: Свежее пиво в кегах
English: Fresh beer in kegs


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