Learn 800 Russian-English similar words divided by topics (with a test)

Updated: Nov 11, 2020

List of Russian words similar to English (cognates)


Did you know that there are approximately 2000 words that are similar

in both Russian and English languages!


Russian words similar to English - Russian-English cognates

Yes, you heard it right! These words are called cognates - they sound almost the same and have the same meaning. As you can see, Russian and English are not completely alien languages as they both come from the same Indo-European language family. So, if you are just starting learning Russian language you already know at least 800 Russian words (because the rest are mainly medical or political terms we don't use in everyday life).

And the good news is that many of these Russian-English similar words and cognates can be learned very quickly as the follow the same system of word formation. In simple words, their endings correspond to each other and as long as you know which Russian ending corresponds to its English equivalent, you can form these words easily.


You just need to pronounce them with a Russian pronunciation. Isn't it amazing?


It is curious to see how languages are flexible and constantly evolving. Some of these words are cognates of the same Indo-European origin, others have been borrowed from languages, like German, French, English, Greek and Latin.


Ok, let's begin! You can watch this video first to learn the main word endings of Russian-English cognates and check yourself by playing a game. After watching this video you will find more Russian-English similar words divided by topics down below (after a brief summary).


Free Russian Video Lesson - Russian words similar to English

Brief summary of the video "Russian-English cognates and similar words"


Pay attention to the endings of words. In some cases it is quite easy to form a Russian word from its English equivalent:

  • English words which end in ‘TION‘, ‘CION’, ‘SION‘ are equivalent to Russian words ending with ‘ЦИЯ‘ or ‘СИЯ‘.

  • English words ending with a letter ‘Y‘ correspond to Russian words ending with ‘ИЯ’ Example: ‘категория‘ = category (But it is not a general rule, so be careful).

  • English words ending on ‘LOGY‘ and ‘TICS‘/’MICS’ are of Greek origin and havetheir equivalents in Russian language as ‘ЛОГИЯ‘ И ‘ТИКА‘/’МИКА’ accordingly.

  • Many professions and job titles share the same ending in English and Russian: ER (eng) = ЕР (ru) like in designer (дизайнер); ER (eng) can also be transformed in ЁР in Russian like in partner (партнер); OR (eng) = ОР (ru) like in doctor (доктор); OR (eng) can also be transformed in ЁР in Russian like in actor (актёр); Less frequent is the ending EUR (eng) which is usually ЁР in Russian - shauffeur = шофёр. It is also the case for some words in a professional sphere. Examples: Factor = фактор, printer = принтер, etc.

  • There are tons of Anglicisms (modern words borrowed from English language) which Russian people use everyday without even noticing it. You can even pronounce these words as they are and most Russian people will understand them

But be careful using them as an older generation (especially 'babushkas') might not understand you and even tell you some bad words (it's a joke). Some really interesting examples of modern Anglicisms are the following:

ЮЗЕР = user; a Russian word for this is 'пользователь' (pól'zavatel')

ПАССВОРД = password; a Russian word for this is 'пароль' (paról')

КОУЧИНГ = coaching; a Russian word for this is 'обучение' (abuchéniye)

ОКЕЙ = ok; a Russian word for this is 'хорошо' (harashó)

ГОУ = let's go; a Russian word for this is 'пойдем' (paidém)

УИКЕНД = weekend; a Russian word for this is 'выходные' (vyhadn'ýye) ...and so many others that I am not going to give you because you need to learn more real Russian words! (even though many of them are also borrowed from other languages).

  • The ending 'IST' of Greek origin means "one who does or makes" is equivalent to a suffix 'ИСТ' in words like "optimist" (оптимист), egoist (эгоист), journalist (журналист), etc.

  • Many adjectives borrowed from English have the ending -НЫЙ: эмоциональный - emotional, интересный - interesting, серьёзный - serious.

Now let's learn some most frequent Russian-English cognates and similar words.


Here is a list of Russian-English cognates divided by categories.

1. Work and business

Администрация [administrátsiya] – administration

Ассоциация [asatsiátsiya] - association

Бизнес [bíznes] - business

Брифинг [brífink] - briefing

Бюджет [byudzhét] – budget

Вакансия [vakánsiya] - vacancy

Дедлайн [dedláin] – deadline

Дело [délo] – deal, affair

Документ [dakument] - document

Интервью [interv’yú] - interview

Контракт [kantrákt] - contract

Клиент [kliyént] – a client

Компания [kampániya] – company

Коллега [kaléga] – a colleague

Концепция [kantséptsiya] – conception, concept

Корпорация [karparátsiya] -corporation


2. Education and Science

Академия [akadémiya] - academy

Аббревиатура [abreviatúra] - abbreviation

Анализ [anális] – analysis

Анатомия [anatómiya] - anatomy

Биология [bialógiya] - biology

География [geagráphiya] - geography

Геометрия [geamétriya] - geometry

Диссертация [disertátsiya] - dissertation

Информатика [infarmátika] - informatics

История [istóriya] – history

Колледж [kóledzh] – college

Литература [literatúra] - literature

Математика [matemátika] – mathematics

Педагогика [pedagógika] - pedagogics

Профессор [prafésar] – professor

Психология [psihalógiya] - psychology


3. Оccupations

Архитектор [arhitéktar] – an architect

Архитектура [arhitektúra] - architecture

Актёр [aktyór] – an actor

Актриса [aktrísa] – an actress

Аниматор [animátor] – an animator

Адвокат [advakát] – an advocate

Ассистент [asistént] – an assistant

Агент [agént] – an agent

Бизнесмен [biznesmén] – a businessman

Бизнесвумен [bizneswúmen] – a businesswoman

Гид [git] – a guide

Дизайнер [dizáiner] – a designer

Дизайн [dizáin] - design

Доктор [dókta] – a doctor

Журналист [zhurnalíst] – a journalist

Журнал [zhurnál] – journal


4. Media and communication (mainly words borrowed from English)

Аккаунт [akáunt] – account

Батарея [batare ́ya] – battery

Баланс [baláns] – balance

Блог [blok] - blog

Блоггер [blóger] – blogger

Видео [vídeo] – video

Вебсайт [websáit] - website

Браузер [bráuzer] - browser

Гуглить [gúglit’] - to google

Диск [disk] - disc

Девайс [deváis] - device

Дисплей [displéy] - display

Идея [idéya] - idea

Интернет [internét] - internet

Информация [infarmátsiya] - information

Контакт [kantákt] - contact

Кликать [klíkat’] – to click

Камера [kámera] - camera

Коммуникация [kamunikátsiya] - communication

Лайкать [láikat’] – to give likes on social media platforms


5. House and household supplies

Адрес [ádres] – address

Антенна [anténna] - antenna

Балкон [balkón] – balcony

Блендер [blénder] - blender

Ваза [váza] - vase

Вилла [vílla] - villa

Гараж [garásh] – garage

Комфорт [kamfórt] - comfort

Кондиционер [kanditsionér] – conditioner

Лифт [lift] – lift, elevator

Лампа [lámpa] - lamp

Миксер [míkser] - mixer

Туалет [tualét] - toilet

Тостер [tóster] - toaster

Терраса [terása] - terrace

Телефон [telefón] - telephone

Телевизор [televízor] - television set, TV

Холл [hol] – hall, hallway

Электричество [elektríchestvo] - electricity


6. City and Places

Автомобиль [avtamabíl’] – automobile

Арка [árka] – arc

Банк [bank] - bank

Барьер [bar’yér] – barrier

Индекс [índeks] – index

Контейнер [kantéiner] – container

Метро [metró] - metro

Павильон [pavil’yón] - pavilion

Парк [park] - park

Почта [póchta] - post

Парковка [parkóvka] - parking

Супермаркет [supermárket] - supermarket

Стадион [stadión] - stadium

Сквер [skver] - square, park

Станция [stántsiya] - station

Статуя [státuya] – statue

Территория [teritóriya] - territory

Трамвай [tramvái] – tramway

Такси [taksí] – taxi

Центр [tsentr] – centre


You can get a full list of 800 words with audio divided by topics in my SUPER guide on Russian-English cognates and similar words

Guide on Russian-English similar words with audio
Guide on Russian-English similar words

You should get this guide for several reasons:

1) It will give you more confidence in learning Russian language, no matter

whether you are a beginner or an intermediate learner;

2) It is well-structured and provides the main categories of words that you

can instantly use in your speech (you will not find anything like this on the Internet, I have checked);

3) It is curious to see how languages are flexible and constantly evolving.

Some of these words are cognates of the same Indo-European origin, others have been borrowed from languages, like German, French, English, Greek and Latin.

Click this link to get a SUPER Guide on Russian-English similar words.



Have you already checked my post on Russian-English false friends?

Then you are ready to take this test to check how well you know Russian-English cognates and false friends.


Test "Russian-English similar words and false friends"

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