I recently noticed that words вы́вески, на́дписи, вы́прямился have stress on the first syllables. Is it because certain prefixes attract stress? Is there any rule regarding this? Yes, I'm desperately searching any rules about stress in Russian, because I always get them wrong.

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    This is not true, that they attract stress. For instance: вытрезви́тель, выёбываться, надстро́ить. – Dmitry Dec 9 '20 at 18:13
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    @Dmitry: perfective infinitives with unstressed вы- (выебнуться in your example) would be very rare, if extant at all. I think this falls under category of "attracting stress", even if there is a counterexample or two. – Quassnoi Dec 9 '20 at 18:58

Yes. Certain prefixes and suffixes tend to attract stress under certain conditions.

As already mentioned by Quassnoi, вы- in perfective verbs is always stressed: вы́прямился, вы́качу, вы́кристаллизовавшиеся. There is a famous tongue twister:

«Три́дцать три корабля́ лави́ровали, лави́ровали, да не вы́лавировали»

Post-perestroika version:

«Мы на́шу страну́ приватизи́ровали, приватизи́ровали, да не вы́приватизировали»


  • -и́зм: катакли́зм, эгои́зм, по̀стимпрессиони́зм
  • -и́ст: лингви́ст, эгои́ст, дѐльтапланери́ст
  • -и́ровать, -и́рование
  • -овье: средневеко́вье, зимо́вье, Приднепро́вье

These are examples of very simple rules that work 99% of the time. There are other rules, but they are very complex. The most comprehensive study to date is Andrey Zalizniak's From Proto-Slavic accentuation to Russian.

Given this enormous complexity, you have every right to make mistakes. If you need a little help, use this tool to add stress marks to Russian text: russiangram.com

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    What you list are suffixes (+endings), not prefixes. – Zeus Dec 9 '20 at 23:57
  • @Zeus - It was a typo. Fixed, thanks! – Sergey Slepov Dec 10 '20 at 10:12
  • It's funny you wrote about russiangram.com , because I've only posted two questions on Russian Stackexchange; the first one was russian.stackexchange.com/questions/22968/… – musialmi Dec 10 '20 at 13:49
  • Thank you for you answer. I should totally get this book, but at first sight it will be difficult to buy outside of Russia. I'll search a bit anyway! – musialmi Dec 10 '20 at 13:51
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    @musialmi, the book is freely available as a PDF from the link I've given but it's not your typical "Beginner's Russian", to say the least. I mostly use it as a reference. – Sergey Slepov Dec 11 '20 at 20:49

In perfective verbs with the prefix вы- and their derivatives (perfective participles, past adjectival participles) the stress always falls on вы-, even if does not in the imperfective counterpart:

  • Выпада́ть (imperfective) — вы́пасть / вы́павший / вы́пав (perfective)
  • Выи́грывать (imperfective) — вы́играть / вы́игравший / вы́играв (perfective)


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