Categories: "Countries"


by Janell  

The word искусство means art. It declines like this:


Мне нравится искусство. I like art.
В искусстве нет больше ничего оригиналього. There is no original art anymore.
Полюбуйся искусством. Enjoy the art.
Он рассказал о своем искусстве. He talked about his artwork.

Art can be the representation of the imagination, expression of the emotion, or recording or a memory, that is usually tangible visual or audial. There are many styles of art from drawings, sculptures, photography to dancing and music. All of these are expressions of the artists that they want to share in their own way. Art has a plethora of genres, from realism and surrealism to geographical art or abstract. Art has many different eras: Renaissance, Classical, Romantic, Contemporary and Modern. Art varies in style from country to region down to the individual. Art can help distress a person or simply let them positively express their creativity.

In 1757 Ivan Shuvalov created the Russian Academy of Arts then known as the Academy of the three noble arts. The focus was on neoclassical styles and prepared its students for furthering their education in European schools. As of 1947 the head office is in Moscow. One of the most recognized art traditions that come from Russia are the Matryoshka dolls. Those are also referred to as Russian nested dolls. They are the small wooden dolls that open from the middle horizontally which have inside of most of them are a smaller doll until they get to the smallest one. Vasily Zvyozdochkin carved the first Russian Matryoshka set in 1890 from a design by Sergey Malyutin.


by Don  

There is nothing Americans like to do more than make fun of the French. It's not just because their language sounds as if it is being spoken by geese with headcolds. It's not just because they make so much mediocre pastry. It's not just because they like to go on strike for recreational purposes. It's not just because they once gave us a huge statue in a shapeless dress as if we couldn't handle designer clothing. It's because... they are French. So today's Russian word of the day is Франция France. There is only one France, thank heavens, so we usually decline it only in the singular:


Note that when it comes immediately after the preposition в, the в becomes во:

В прошлом году я отдыхал во Франции. Last year I vacationed in France
Вы когда-нибудь ездили во Францию? Have you ever traveled to France?

Here are a couple more sample sentences with Франция in other cases:

— Какой город столица Франции?
— Я же американец, откуда мне это знать?
“What city is the capital of France?”
“I'm an American. How should I know?”
Мы хотим ездить по Франции, любоваться французским пейзажем. We want to travel around France and enjoy the French landscape.
Между Францией и Англией находится пролив Ла-Манш. The English Channel lies between France and England.
Благодаря Франции и её престижу в международной политике и образовании, много французских слов вошли в русский и английский языки. Интересно, как от них избавиться? Thanks to France and its prestige in international politics and education, many French words have entered Russian and English. I wonder how we can get rid of them?


by Don  

The Russian word for Hawaii is Гавайи, and when you decline it, it has only plural endings, no singular:


Those are the forms to use if you are discussing the Big Island itself. If you are talking about the whole state or the whole chain of islands, then it's best to call them Гавайские острова The Hawaiian Islands. (Notice that in Russian we capitalize the first word but not the second.)

Because we are dealing with an island, we use the prepositions на and с to mean to/at and from:

Мы с Зоей полетим на Гавайи на медовый месяц. У моего друга там есть домик. Так можно отдыхать почти бесплатно. Нельзя ведь начинать новую жизнь с излишних расходов! Zoya and I will go to Hawaii for our honeymoon. My friend has a little house there. That way we can vacation practically for free. After all, you shouldn't start your new life with excessive expenses!
С Гавайев вернёмся в Финикс, где я её уже устроил на работу на завод, на котором делают пристяжные ремни для самолётных сидений. From Hawaii we will return to Phoenix, where I have already found her a job at a factory that makes airplane seatbelts.

The ending -йи is not typical for a Russian noun in the nominative, so the Russians are still slightly unsure of how to deal with it. Some people and references treat Гавайи as an indeclinable noun, but the current advice of style guides is to decline it.


by Don  

The common Russian word for Mexico is Мексика, while the official name is Мексиканские Соединённые Штаты ‘The Mexican United States.’ Russian Wikipedia defines Мексика as «государство в Северной Америке, граничащее на севере с США» “a state in North America that shares a border on the north with the USA.” A Mexican man is мексиканец and a Mexican woman is мексиканка. Notice that names of nationalities are not capitalized in Russian. The language of Mexico is not мексиканский язык but испанский язык. Gosh, I wonder if there are any other countries where the name of language does not match the name of the country…

The name of Mexico City in Russian is Мехико. Curious, eh? The country is a feminine noun and declines. The capitol city does not decline and, despite its ending in -о, is masculine in gender, as you can see in this sentence «Мехикo был основан в 1325 году индейцами-ацтеками» “Mexico was founded in 1325 by the Aztec Indians” (Russian Wikipedia).

One of the great things about living in Arizona is you can make quick trips to Mexico. «В субботу мы ездили в Ногалес» “On Saturday we went to Nogales.” «Смотри, какую крутую татуировку мне сделали в Ногалесе!» “Look at the cool tatoo I got in Nogales!”

deMexiko (neuter), Vereinigte Mexikanische Staaten
esMéxico, Méjico, Estados Unidos Mexicanos
frLe Mexique, États-Unis mexicains