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Antonyms or words with the opposite meaning

Hello, dear student!

This article will be useful as for beginners as for those students, who know Russian quite well. I suppose, there is possibility to meet the word "антоним" [antonim] antonym - even in colloquial language. No, it's not a name (some students confuse it with the Russian name Антон [Anton]), it is the term of Russian grammar, which denotes the opposite meaning of any word, action or feature. Students, who study at Russian universities, can also hear this word, that's why let's look at some words-antonyms that can help us to understand the meaning of this term.


Девочка [devachka] a girl - the antonym of this word can be the words: "мальчик" [mal'chik] a boy, "старуха" [starukha] an old woman, "женщина" [zhensshina] a woman

You might think, it's all possibly clear with the word "мальчик", but why are the words "старуха" and "женщина" also considered to be antonyms? The thing is that words with the opposite meaning can be divided not only according to gender, but also to age and qualities.

Мальчик [mal'chik] a boy - the antonyms are: "девочка" a girl, "старик" [starik] an old man, "мужчина" [musshina] a man.


Let's take, for example, the verb "страдать" [stradat'] to suffer

The antonyms of this verb can be: "быть счастливым" [byt' sshaslivym] to be happy, "радоваться" [radavat'sya] to be glad, "веселиться"[ visilit'sya] to have fun

The verb "страдать" denotes an action, when a person is sad, he feels sick, suffers emotional pain, a person can even cry. And antonyms denote the opposite action, which is much more different than the verb "страдать".


An adjective, denoting various features and characteristics, is also very diverse part of speech in the Russian language. To prove it, you can just take the Russian dictionary of antonyms and look up a necessary word there, but now I'll provide you with several examples:

For example, the adjective "стеклянный" [stiklyanyy] - made from glass - is such characteristic of an object that you even don't know what synonym to take. Many claim that this word doesn't have any antonyms, but in my opinion, it all depends on a personal perception. I believe, we can consider the words "пластмассовый" (plastic) or "железный" (iron) as its antonyms. Glass is very fragile material, so the opposite will be something hard, that you cannot break.

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