ГНАТЬ – ГОНЯТЬ Russian Verbs of Motion

In this Russian language lesson for intermediate learners, I’m explaining how we use the verb of motion ГНАТЬ / ГОНЯТЬ, without prefixes and with them. You asked me to tell about this verb; in addition, it’s really hard to find much information about this verb in Russian language textbooks; that’s why I’ve made this grammar lesson. I hope it will be helpful!

The main meaning of this verb is to chase, to drive – заставлять кого-то или что-то двигаться.

ГНАТЬ – movement in one direction

ГОНЯТЬ – movement in more directions

You, of course, remember that verbs of motion have such an interesting rule:
If we add a prefix to the verb of motion, which shows a movement in one direction, such as a verb ИДТИ, then this verb becomes a perfective verb. So, ИДТИ is an imperfective verb, ЕХАТЬ – also imperfective. But the verbs ПРИЙТИ, ПРИЕХАТЬ – they are perfective verbs.

The PDF-transcript and mp3-audio of this video ‘ГНАТЬ – ГОНЯТЬ Russian Verbs of Motion’ are available at

If you would like to further improve your knowledge, check this whole section about Russian verbs of Motion. There are a lot of interesting videos about this topic, for example УШЁЛ – ВЫШЕЛ – ПОШЁЛ (Verbs of Motion).