Although the soft л and soft т are the most noticeable soft consonants in Russian, nearly all of the remaining consonants have a hard and soft pronunciation. Below are a few examples of consonants in their hard and soft forms. Click on the words or phrases to hear how they are pronounced with hard pronunciation, and with soft pronunciation.
|Hard Pronunciation||Soft Pronunciation||Tips|
|Добрый дэн||Добрый день||Soft Д = (Д + pinch of "z")|
|сем||семь||Soft М = (М + "smile")|
|вес||весь||Soft С = (С + "smile")|
|цар||царь||Soft Р = (Р + "smile")|
You may have noticed that the "Tips" column at the right includes some formulas for pronunciation. The word "smile" suggests that the speaker's pronunciation becomes more shallow, as if he or she is "smiling." These soft consonants are not nearly as noticeable as the soft л or soft т. However, you might hear a slight difference in how the words are pronounced when comparing the audio from the "Hard Pronunciation" column to the "Soft Pronunciation" column.