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Learning any new language can be a daunting task, but undoubtedly a rewarding one so long as you’re prepared to put in a bit of ground work. This is particularly true of the highs and lows of learning Russian. Whether you’re thinking of taking the language up, or need a reminder of why you should stick at it, here’s a list of 10 reasons why Russian is a great language to learn…

  • Because once you’ve mastered the alphabet, you can enjoy watching others look at it with confusion – why does a P sound like an R, and why is the я backwards and sound like ‘ya’?

  • For the most part the Russian language is phonetic, meaning with a bit of luck you should be able to sound out any word with some success.
  • You’ll be able to have a conversation with around 155 million native speakers, but more importantly you’ll be able to share the wonders of Russian TV (see Rocky Russian).
  • Because there are words like Гоголь-моголь and пилюля.
  • You may know more than you think – most people have heard the words ‘sputnik’, ‘bolshevik’ and ‘mammoth’ and used them themselves- all come from Russia or have Russian origins.
  • Russia decided it didn’t need uneccessary words like ‘is’ or ‘am’ – too right, you’re better off cutting to the chase.
  • Russian is the native language of the likes of Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Solzhenitsyn and Nabokov – it must be pretty great!
  • Because like any language you’re bound to find a few words that sound remarkably similar to English, in other words cognates – Журна́л (magazine), аэропорт (airport), гитара (guitar) and кафе (cafe) to name a few.
  • Last but not least, it is a beautiful language!

There’s probably a million more reasons than this list can do justice, so if there’s any that you feel really should be up there, let me know!