Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Russian Verb Conjugators

  Conjugation of Russian verbs is probably one of the trickiest things in Russian language. Eventually, with a lot of practice, you'll be using right forms automatically, but for now I recommend these websites:

If you can't find there the verb you need, try a similar verb (with similar suffixes and ending). You can search Wikitionary (Викисловарь) where you might find not only conjugations, but also synonyms, examples of usage and other things.

Do you know any other useful conjugators? Leave a comment below.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Russian vocabulary: Twilight vampires and werewolves

  Twilight: Breaking Dawn 2 is in theaters now, so finally this “saga” is over. For those of you learning Russian who like Twilight stuff, here is a bit of useful vocabulary.

Белла Свон
Эдвард Каллен
Джейкоб Блэк

вампир - vampire
кровь - blood
клыки - fangs
кусать - to bite
яд - poison, venom
чтение мыслей - mind reading
читать мысли - to read someone's mind
оборотень - werewolf or were- anything
индеец - an Indian
стая - pack
вожак (стаи) - leader (of a pack)
запечатление - imprinting
скучная героиня - boring heroine
Спайк гораздо лучше Эдварда — Spike is so much better than Edward

Books' titles in Russian:

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Russian names for weekdays and their origin

In this post you'll learn Russian words for days of the week. It might be easier to memorize them when you know about their origin.

понедельник - Monday
comes from неделя - week

вторник - Tuesday
второй - second

среда - Wednesday
середина - middle

четверг - Thursday
четвёртый - fourth

пятница - Friday
пятый - fifth

Friday, November 9, 2012

Сказать and its siblings

  Сказать (to say) is a very common Russian word. Knowing it, you can easily learn a few more words that contain сказать. Think of Russian language as Lego – you can build new words by adding prefixes, suffixes, even other words. Let's look at what can be done with сказать.

сказать — to say, to tell, to speak
рассказать — to tell, to narrate
предсказать — to predict (from перед - before)
подсказать — to direct, to prompt
высказать, высказаться — to speak out, to express oneself
пересказать — to paraphrase, to retell

From these verbs you can make nouns:

сказка — fairytale
рассказ — (short) story
рассказчик — storyteller, narrator
предсказание — prediction, prophecy
предсказатель — soothsayer, prophet
подсказка — hint, prompt, cue
высказывание — observation, statement
пересказ — retelling, rendering

Сказать has -каз- for its root, с- is its prefix. Drop it, and you get to make even more words.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Idioms and proverbs about fear in Russian

Below are five Russian idioms and proverbs about fear.

1. У страха глаза велики - «Fear has big eyes»
A coward sees danger everywhere.

2. Глаза боятся, а руки делают (глаза страшатся, а руки делают) - «Eyes are scared, but hands are working»
We say this when we have to start doing something difficult, something that might take forever to accomplish. It's a way to encourage someone: it's not that hard, it's doable.

3. На свой страх и риск - «For one's own fear and risk»
It's about taking responsibility all by yourself. For example, you want to do something risky that no one will help you with, no one will support you – you'll be doing it на свой страх и риск.

4. Рыцарь без страха и упрёка - «A knight without fear or blame»
Often used jokingly: a brave man, a gentleman without flaws.

5. Волка бояться, в лес не ходить - «Being afraid of a wolf means not going to the forest»
If you're afraid of something, you won't do it, so just forget about your fears (and wolves) and do it!

Basic vocabulary:
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