Глаз (часть первая)

by Don  

Luludya withdrew her lips from mine, gazed up at me soulfully and whispered:

У тебя такие красивые глаза, как у верблюда! Your eyes are as pretty as a camel’s!

Several hours later, in the exhausted aftermath, it struck me that perhaps some Americans might have taken those words the wrong way, had they been in my oh-so-fortunate place. Camels have the most beautiful eyelashes of any animal. It is no surprise that a Gypsy woman in the throes of passion would say such a thing. And upon reflection it strikes me that all the best things in life are born in love, so it is only suitable that Luludya's love for me should elicit a blog entry on eyes.

The Russian word for eye is глаз, which declines like this:

Genглаза, глазуглаз
Preглазе, глазуглазах

Old Russian in addition to singular forms and plural forms had ‘dual’ forms, which were used to indicate things that came in pairs. For masculine nouns like глаз, that ending was -а, producing Old Russian глаза ‘two eyes, a pair of eyes.’ Nowadays that form has generalized to the plural form. We'll deal with the alternative forms of the genitive and the prepositional soon.

When you describe someone's eyes, the most common common colors are these:

У моего брата голубые глаза. My brother has blue eyes.
У её сестры зелёные глаза. Her sister has green eyes.
У моего племянника карие глаза. My nephew has brown eyes.
У вашего соседа серые глаза. Your neighbor has gray eyes.

When one is with one's beloved, it is absolutely essential to compliment the eyes, and since Russian intonation is different from English intonation, one must practice the phrases over and over again so that they sound sincere. Intonation construct (IC) 2 is often used for emphatic statements, so one could make the following compliment:

IC 5 is used for oohing and aahing, so one could pose the compliment thus:

Now we should probably address the issue of... damn... Luludya is calling my cell phone. Half a mo... Ohmigoodness, she just said:

У тебя лапы, как у медведя! You have paws like a bear’s!

Gods! Is it any wonder that I love this woman? I must go to her immediately! Grammar must wait until tomorrow!


Comment from: claudia [Visitor]

more audio please! and a photo of Luludya

04/23/12 @ 11:28
Comment from: Shirley Z [Visitor]

It is so nice to hear the spoken word. It makes a big difference.

02/15/12 @ 10:47
Comment from: Joke [Visitor]

If Luludya leaves you alone for a moment, maybe you can correct the little typo in the word neighbor. ;)

Don responds: Done!

02/13/12 @ 00:11

Form is loading...