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  • IPA(key): [dʲɪˈtʲa]
  • (file)

Etymology 1Edit

From Old East Slavic дѣтя (dětja), from Proto-Slavic *dětę. The и of the first syllable in the singular is from дити́на (ditína), nowadays written дети́на (detína) by analogy with the accented де́ти (déti), with regular distant assimilation ѣи́ > ии́. An alternative formulation by Šakhmatov (ѣ > и before a soft consonant) explains these forms more directly.

Alternative formsEdit

  • дитё (ditjó) (non-standard, partially declinable)


дитя́ (ditjáf anim (genitive дитя́ти, nominative plural де́ти, genitive plural дете́й) (see note on oblique forms)

  1. (dated or poetic) child, baby, kid (also used ironically or in similes)
Usage notesEdit
  • The oblique cases of singular дитя, except for the accusative case, are never used in speech and seldom in modern prose writing, as many native speakers do not intuitively understand their exact inflectional roles in relation to дитя, and may consider them strange or even un-Russian. Instead, the corresponding cases of ребёнок (rebjónok) are used.
  • The plural forms are standard and in common use, and serve as the normal plural forms of ребёнок (rebjónok).
Related termsEdit

Etymology 2Edit


дитя́ (ditján anim or n anim pl

  1. genitive singular of дитё (ditjó)
  2. nominative plural of дитё (ditjó)