Russian Language Grammar

    Capitalization

In Russian, capital letters are used:

  1. At the beginning of a sentence:  Сегодня тепло – Today it is warm.

  2. With proper names: Пушкин – Pushkin; Волга – Volga; Москва –  Moscow. 

  3. With possessive adjectives (containing the suffix -ин):  Катина книга – Kate's book,  Сашин телефон - Sasha's telephone.

  4. With the pronoun Вы – you (customarily capitalized in correspondence).

Capital letters are not used for:

  1. Days of the week and names of the months: среда – Wednesday; январь – January.

  2. Names of nationalities and languages: американец - an American, француз - a Frenchman, французский язык - the French language/French, русский язык - the Russian language/Russian.

  3. Adjectives derived from proper nouns (containing the suffix -ск): московские улицы – the Moscow streets, парижское кафе - a Parisian cafe; except when they enter into a proper noun: улица Московская – Moscow street, Казанский вокзал - Kazan railway station.

  4. The pronoun я – I.

     In compound proper names, as a rule, only the first member is capitalized: Чёрное море – Black Sea; Атлантический океан – Atlantic Ocean

Except when:

  1. The second member is also a proper name: Южная Америка –  South America.

  2. Referring to high-ranking agencies: Верховный Суд – Supreme Court; Совет Безопасности – Security Council.