1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Ukrainian
  4. >
  5. Verb Aspects [UK. GRAMMAR POR…




Ukrainian is an East Slavic language spoken primarily in Western and Central Ukraine by 40 million people making it the third most spoken Slavic language by number of native speakers in the world!

If there is any words you don't understand please refer to the glossary

What is an aspect?

In Ukrainian, like most Slavic languages all verbs have two forms or aspects and as you know already, Ukrainian verbs are conjugated by tense, number and sometimes gender. Take for example; Читати (to read)

Just like from the previous posts right?

In Ukrainian the final thing to take note of when conjugating a verb is aspect. There are two types of aspect:

Perfective Aspect

This aspect is used for an action that was/will be completed. We form it by adding a prefix to the verb. Sadly, there are no rules for the prefixes and you will just have to learn it with the verb. For читати we add про-

Imperfective Aspect

This is the aspect used for a habit, repeated action or an action thought of in general terms this is the base form of the verbs that you've used so far (look at the first table for an example)

What do they mean?

In Ukrainian it is possible to translate the aspects but as per usual when translating from two different languages it isn't always perfect.

Verbs Section Complete!

It's been a month and the second section; Verbs is complete! On behalf of the team, I would like to thank all the users of the Ukrainian course and all the lovely comments that have been posted here! Next up NOUNS!

Your Complete Guide To Ukrainian Verbs

The Grammar Portal

The Language Portal

October 13, 2016



Hi TseDanyloXD.

I've previously started the Ukrainian tree before but I had to quit the course because I didn't feel like it was complete enough for me to pursue it. Are you a native Ukrainian speaker? Because if you are always going to be here then I am definitely going to go for it again, I've been finding your posts useful so far! :)


Hello difficulty12, thank you for your lovely comment :)

Yes the tree is small but that is why I'm making this. No, I'm not a native Ukrainian speaker (my native language is English). Also I would recommend re-reading this post as there was an error with the tables but I've fixed them now. If you have any more questions feel free to ask!

Happy learning!


Hey TseDanyloXD! I appreciate the work you are putting in! I just want to ask about a little difference I note here from my native/bilingual Russian (I'm learning Ukrainian "for real" because I have family that speaks Ukrainian).

So the definitions of a few things here sound a bit strange to me from a Russian-speaking perspective. In the sense that the intuitive "feel" for them that I have from using lots of conversational Russian with Ukrainian natives that only speak Ukrainian and Russian is quite different from the table. For example, in Russian I would never say "я прочитаю" to mean "I am reading this to the end right now", or "I will have read this to the end", but rather to mean "I will read this to the end (at some point in the future)". If I wanted to express the sentiment that "I am reading this to the end right now", I would say "я это сейчас читаю". This doesn't quite capture the perfective aspect but I would say that if you're doing anything right now it's automatically not perfective, at least the way I understand the term "perfective". For another (Russian) example I would only ever use the perfective "я это сделаю" to mean "I will do this (to completion)", not "I am doing this to completion right now" (would say "я это делаю" for that), not "I will have done this" (I would try and use an alternate construction for this as I don't think it translates directly into Russian, something like "это уже будет сделано"). Essentially I have never heard someone use a perfective present conjugation to actually refer to the present.

I was wondering if this is a difference between Ukrainian and Russian that you're aware of, or if this is just a case of trying to fit direct english translations to stuff that might not translate perfectly word-for-word in a single-sentence no context example? (Or is my understanding of the Russian concepts wrong? I would love if a native Ukrainian+Russian speaker weighed in on that, as I'm in America now and don't have access to native speakers of both languages.)


Ah yes, I understand what you mean! Yes "Ja proczytaju" means that you are reading or will read something but it will be completed at some point whether it be in five minutes or five decades. It's quite difficult to explain in English but as far I understand it works the same as in Russian.


Is there a comprehensive table/web page/source somewhere that gives the prefixes for verbs in the perfective aspect as an aspect of verb conjugation. I am thinking of Bescherelle L'art de conjuger for French which lists 8000 verbs. Thank you.

Learn Ukrainian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.