This section of the magazine – “Moscow Vocabulary” – was born of remembering … Ronald Reagan, who appeared to be a fan – and collector – of Russian proverbs and sayings. Well, and we would like to guide you into a world of Russian idioms – just as bright and colorful.
САДИТЬСЯ НА ЛЮБИМОГО КОНЬКА – sadittsa na lubimogo kon’ka.
(To mount one’s favourite pony)
Explanation: To dwell on one’s favourite topic.
ОКАЗАТЬСЯ МЕЖДУ ДВУХ ОГНЕЙ – okazattsa mezhdu dvukh ogney.
(To find oneself between two fires)
Explanation: To be attacked from two directions.
МАСТЕР НА ВСЕ РУКИ – master na vse ruki.
(A master at all hands)
Explanation: To show talent in anything one turns his hand to.
ВЫРВАТЬ что-либо С КОРНЕМ – virvat’ s kornem.
(To tear something out with root)
Explanation: To destroy something completely.
БИТЬ КЛЮЧОМ – bit’ kluchom.
(To well up, to bubble)
Explanation: To be in full operation.
ПОКАЗАТЬ КОГТИ – pokazat’ kogti.
(To show one’s claws)
Explanation: To show anger.
НЕ ВИДЕТЬ СВЕТА БЕЛОГО – ne videt’ sveta belogo.
(Not to see the white world)
Explanation: One is so burdened with work or cares that he has no rest.
МНОГО ВОДЫ УТЕКЛО – mnogo vody uteklo.
(Much water has flowed away)
Explanation: Much has happened, much has changed since.
СКОЛЬЗИТЬ ПО ПОВЕРХНОСТИ – skol’zit’ po poverknosti.
(To glide on the surface)
Explanation: To deal with a subject only superficially.
ОКАТИТЬ ХОЛОДНОЙ ВОДОЙ – okatit’ kholodnoy vodoy.
(To pour cold water over someone)
Explanation: To discourage someone’s enthusiasm.
ПОСТАВИТЬ КРЕСТ – postavit’ krest.
(To put a cross on someone/something)
Explanation: To lose faith in someone or something,
to stop thinking of someone or something.
ЖИТЬ ДУША В ДУШУ – zhit’ dusha v dushu.
(To live soul and soul together)
Explanation: To live in harmony.