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Cyrillic letter Short I
Cyrillic letter short I - uppercase and lowercase.svg
Phonetic usage:[j]
The Cyrillic script
Slavic letters
АА́А̀А̄ӒБВГ
ҐДЂЃЕЕ́ЀЕ̄
ЁЁ́ЄЄ́ЖЗЗ́Ѕ
ИІІ́І̄І̀ЇЇ́И́
ЍӢЙЈКЛЉМ
НЊОО́О̀ŌПР
СС́ТЋЌУУ́У̀
ӮЎӰ́ФХЦЧЏ
ШЩЪЪ̀Ъ̈Ъ̄ЫЫ́
ЬѢЭЭ́Э̀ЮЮ́Ю̀
ЯЯ́Я̀
Non-Slavic letters
ӐА̊А̃Ӓ̄А̨ӔӘӘ́
Ә̀Ә̃ӚӘ̄В̌ҒГ̑Г̣
Г̌ҔӺҒ̌ӶД́Д̀Д̌
Д̈Д̣Д̅Д̆ӖЕ̃Ё̄Є̈
ӁЖ̓ҖӜЖ̣ҘӞЗ̌
З̱З̣З̆З̓ԐԐ̈ӠИ̃
ҊӤІ̄́І̨Ј̄ҚК̈Ӄ
ҠҞҜК̣ԚЛ́Л̀Ӆ
ԮԒМ́ӍН́Н̀Н̃Н̄
ӉҢԨӇҤО̆О̂О̃
ӦӦ̄ӨӨ̄Ө́Ө̆ӪҨ
ԤП̈Р́Р̌ҎС̀С̌Ҫ
С̣С̱Т́Т̀Т̈Т̌Т̣Ҭ
Т‍ЬУ̃ӰӲУ̊Ӱ̄ҮҮ́
Ү̈ҰХ̣Х̱Х̮Х̑Х̌Ҳ
ӼӾҺҺ́Һ̈ԦЦ́Ц̌
Ц̈ҴЧ̀ҶӴӋҸЧ̇
ҼҾШ̆Ш̈Ш̣Ы̆Ы̄Ӹ
Ь́Ь̈ҌЭ̆Э̄Э̇ӬӬ́
Ӭ̄Ю̆Ю̈Ю̈́Ю̄Я̆Я̄Я̈
Я̈́ԜԜ́ӀӀ́
Archaic letters
ҀѺОУ
ѠѼѾѢ̈
ѤѦѪ
ѨѬѮѰѲѴѶ
Ԙ
ԀԔԖԠ
ԢҦ
ԂԄԈԊԌԎ
ԆԞԪԬ
Г̧Г̄

Short I (Й й; italics: Й й) is a letter of the Cyrillic script. It is made of the Cyrillic letter И with a breve.

Short I represents the palatal approximant /j/ like the pronunciation of ⟨y⟩ in yesterday.

Depending on the romanization system in use and the Slavic language that is under examination, it can be romanized as ⟨y⟩, ⟨j⟩, ⟨i⟩ or ⟨ĭ⟩. For more details, see romanization of Russian, romanization of Ukrainian, romanization of Belarusian and romanization of Bulgarian.

History

Active use of ⟨Й⟩ (or, rather, the breve over ⟨И⟩) began around the 15th and 16th centuries. Since the middle of the 17th century, the differentiation between ⟨И⟩ and ⟨Й⟩ is obligatory in the Russian variant of Church Slavonic orthography (used for the Russian language as well). During the alphabet reforms of Peter I, all diacritic marks were removed from the Russian writing system, but shortly after his death, in 1735, the distinction between ⟨И⟩ and ⟨Й⟩ was restored. ⟨Й⟩ was not officially considered a separate letter of the alphabet until the 1930s.

Because ⟨Й⟩ was considered to be a vowel and not a consonant, it was not required to take a hard sign when it came at the end of a word in pre-reform orthography.

Usage

Language position in
alphabet
name
Belarusian 11th і нескладовае (i nieskladovaje, or "non-syllabic I")
Bulgarian 10th и кратко (i kratko or "short I")
Russian 11th и краткое (i kratkoye or "short I")
Ukrainian 14th і коротка /jɔt/, й /ɪj/
Kazakh 13th қысқа й /qysqa ɪ/ (qysqa i or "short I")

In Russian, it appears predominantly in diphthongs like /ij/ in широкий (shirokiy 'wide'), /aj/ in край (kray 'end', 'krai'), /ej/ in долей (doley 'portion'), /oj/ in горой (goroy 'mountain'), and /uj/ in буйство (buystvo 'rage'). It is used in other positions only in foreign words, such as Йopк (York, not with ⟨Ё⟩), including fellow Slavic words like Йовович (Yovovich).

In Kazakh, the letter is used to represent a short ɪ sound (e.g. берейік (tr. (Let us) give)). The letter, much like the other 11 Cyrillic letters, will not have another Latin version and merge with Ии (İi).

In Serbo-Croatian and Macedonian, the Cyrillic letter Јe is used to represent the same sound. Latin-based Slavonic writing systems, such as Polish, Czech and the Latin version of Serbo-Croatian use the Latin letter J (not the letter Y, as in English or French), for that purpose.

Related letters and other similar characters

Contrastive use of Cyrillic kratka (for consonant [j]) and Latin breve (for short vowel [ĭ]) above и in Russian-Nenets dictionary
Contrastive use of Cyrillic kratka (for consonant [j]) and Latin breve (for short vowel [ĭ]) above и in Russian-Nenets dictionary

Note that breve in Й may be quite different from ordinary breve, the former having a thinner central part and thicker ends (the opposite holds for ordinary breve). This is often seen in serif fonts, cf. Й (Cyrillic Short I) and Ŭ (Latin U with breve).

Computing codes

Character information
Preview Й й
Unicode name CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER SHORT I CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER SHORT I
Encodings decimal hex dec hex
Unicode 1049 U+0419 1081 U+0439
UTF-8 208 153 D0 99 208 185 D0 B9
Numeric character reference Й Й й й
Named character reference Й й
KOI8-R and KOI8-U 234 EA 202 CA
Code page 855 190 BE 189 BD
Code page 866 137 89 169 A9
Windows-1251 201 C9 233 E9
ISO-8859-5 185 B9 217 D9
Macintosh Cyrillic 137 89 233 E9