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Writing Emails and Letters in Russian

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When it comes to writing emails and letters, understanding the nuances of the language plays a crucial role in ensuring that your message is conveyed accurately and respectfully. In Russian, just like in English, there are specific phrases and vocabulary that are typically used in written correspondence. Mastering these will help you communicate effectively when writing in Russian.

Уважаемый (m) / Уважаемая (f) – This means “Dear” and is used to address someone respectfully in an email or letter. It is gender-specific, with “уважаемый” used for men and “уважаемая” for women.
Уважаемая Мария Ивановна, я хотел бы обсудить с вами последний проект.

Здравствуйте – Translates to “Hello” and is a more formal greeting that can be used if you don’t know the name of the person you are addressing.
Здравствуйте, меня интересует возможность бронирования номера в вашей гостинице.

С уважением – This phrase means “Sincerely” and it is commonly used to close a message or letter in a formal and respectful manner.
С уважением, Антон Павлович.

Внимание – Meaning “Attention,” this word is often used at the beginning of important sentences or announcements in an email or letter.
Внимание! Изменение времени встречи.

Благодарю or Спасибо – Both mean “Thank you,” with “благодарю” being slightly more formal. It’s important to express gratitude where it’s due in correspondence.
Благодарю вас за скорый ответ.

Извините – This is the word for “Sorry” or “Excuse me,” which is useful if you need to apologize for any errors or misunderstandings in your letter or email.
Извините за задержку в ответе на ваше письмо.

Просьба – Meaning “Request,” this noun is used when you are asking for something in a formal manner.
Просьба отправить мне ваш прайс-лист.

Приложение – This term means “Attachment” when referring to documents or files attached to an email.
Ознакомьтесь, пожалуйста, с документом в приложении.

Письмо – Simply meaning “Letter,” this is the word used for both physical letters and email content.
Я получил ваше письмо и изучу предложенные материалы.

Отправитель – This word means “Sender,” referring to the person who sends the email or letter.
Отправитель письма указал, что требуется срочный ответ.

Получатель – Meaning “Recipient,” this word refers to the person who receives the email or letter.
Убедитесь, что на конверте правильно указаны данные получателя.

Тема – This translates to “Subject,” and relates to the subject line in an email or the main theme of a letter.
Пожалуйста, включите номер заказа в тему письма.

Подпись – “Signature,” this is the way you sign off at the end of an email or letter, often preceded by your name.
С наилучшими пожеланиями, Алексей.

By familiarizing yourself with these common phrases and words, you can write more confidently in Russian, whether you’re penning a personal letter or crafting a professional email. Remember to pay attention to the context of your communication and choose words that match the formality of the situation. With practice, you will find it becomes easier to express yourself clearly and respectfully in your Russian correspondence.

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