Russian grammar overview and dictionary from Cornell

Earlier today I was looking around online for some Russian material, namely a grammar overview. I ended up finding that, and quite a lot more!

For grammar, Cornell has the Beginning Russian Grammar page. While all of the essentials of Russian grammar seem to be covered there, the explanations might seem a bit short for beginners. However, it’s a good reference page if you’re already well along the Russian language road.

What I found far more interesting, however, is their Russian Dictionary Tree. It’s an expanded version of this book, 5000 Russian Words: With All Their Inflected Forms and Other Grammatical Information. The authors of the book, who apparently work at Cornell, have made the expanded online version available for anyone to use. Considering the stand-alone CD version offered by Lexicon Bridge Publishers costs $54.50, this is quite a deal, to have it online for free!

Here’s the description of the Russian Dictionary Tree from Lexicon Bridge Publishers:

This 12,000-entry dictionary allows you to search for a Russian or English word, and gives you all the forms and all the endings for every word. Unlike many electronic dictionaries, it is not an abridged version of a printed dictionary. On the contrary, definitions are far more detailed, and many entries contain examples and extensive notes on style and usage.

I’ve looked up a few words thus far, and they aren’t kidding – it’s quite thorough! All of the words I’ve looked up have had a complete declension table, but most of them also had example sentences showing how the word was used.

To use the dictionary, there’s only one thing you have to do: install one of Cornell’s Russian fonts. This is because they use a special font that allows them to place accent marks over letters. It’s not hard to install, though, if you follow their short instructions.

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