All Russian tenses explained in 5 minutes

Most verbs have 2 infinitives: perfective and imperfective. The choice is easy – imperfective forms are used in present (any), as well as in past or future (if you want to underline it was a process or a regular action). Perfective forms are used for single actions in the past or future and there’s no need to mention the process.

Here’s an example with imperfective verb “зарабатывать (to be earning/to earn)” and perfective verb “заработать (to have earned/to earn)”:

1To get a better quality picture, just click on it! It does not cover 100% cases (for example, sometimes with modality we use past tense even though refer to present or future), but this logic is applied most of the time.



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