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How do I differentiate between similar letters in the russian alphabet?

 

for example, Ш and Щ are basically the same exact thing... when is one used and not the other, is there a difference between the two?
and E and Й just sound so similar to me...

For learning: Russian
Base language: English
Category: Language

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    Best Answer - Chosen by Voting
    "Ш" is a hard consonant,"Щ" is a soft consonant.

    You can watch these videos:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6nAE-K4y2s
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTR-ffjlm_c
    Hope this helps.

    Ш sounds exactly like SH in English.
    Щ is more softly, like u add ' to SH = SH'

    Й is very short sound. like joY, boY.
    E is longer.

    no, they are very different
    Ш is hard consonant
    while Щ is soft

    as for E and Й -- how about giving some words as the example of your confusion?

     

    Е consists of two sounds "й" and "э",
    Й is short, э is long, so Е sounds as йэээээ.
    But if Е goes after consonants in words than this consonant gets soft and э goes after it (белый -б'элый).

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