The Russian alphabet (Russian: ру́сский алфави́т, tr. russkiy alfavit, IPA: [ˈruskʲɪj ɐlfɐˈvʲit] or, more traditionally, Russian: ру́сская а́збука, tr. russkaya azbuka, IPA: [ˈruskəjə ˈazbʊkə]) was derived from Cyrillic script for Old Church Slavonic language. Initially an old variant of the Bulgarian alphabet, it became used in the Kievan Rus' since the 10th century to write what would become the Russian language. The modern Russian alphabet consists of 33 letters. It has twenty consonants (⟨б⟩, ⟨в⟩, ⟨г⟩, ⟨д⟩, ⟨ж⟩, ⟨з⟩, ⟨к⟩, ⟨л⟩, ⟨м⟩, ⟨н⟩, ⟨п⟩, ⟨р⟩, ⟨с⟩, ⟨т⟩, ⟨ф⟩, ⟨х⟩, ⟨ц⟩, ⟨ч⟩, ⟨ш⟩, ⟨щ⟩), ten vowels (⟨а⟩, ⟨е⟩, ⟨ё⟩, ⟨и⟩, ⟨о⟩, ⟨у⟩, ⟨ы⟩, ⟨э⟩, ⟨ю⟩, ⟨я⟩), a semivowel (⟨й⟩), and two modifier letters ("signs": ⟨ь⟩ and ⟨ъ⟩) that alter pronunciation of a preceding consonant and/or a following vowel.
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