Problems of searching for universals, types and specific properties of the language system have been in the focus of attention of linguists for many years. Universals are explicated on all modules of language and speech. One of the striking characteristics that mark the identity of the language system is the rhythm of speech. The material for the analysis deals with the results of research in the field of verbal rhythmology and phonetic science. As a result of the analysis, rhythmic universals were identified at the level of the primary phonetic property (structure) - the rhythm of speech sets the most important parameter for controlling articulation; at the functional level - the identification of organizing and segmenting functions; at the level of units - rhythmic structure (RS) and syntagma (according to the concept of L.V. Shcherba).