# What is the Russian Homophonic Group?

Equivalent question: What Russian letters won't equal 1?

From: the homophonic group: a mathematical diversion --> This is an exercise from Michael Artin's Algebra on, well, abstract algebra. In this exercise for the English language, words are equal if they are homophones, kind of like a formalisation of the joke that sin(x)/n=6. So in English:

bee=be --> This implies e=1 by cancellation of b and e.

buy=by --> This implies u=1 by cancellation of b and y.

rase=raze --> This implies s=z by cancellation of r and e.

canvass = canvas --> This implies s=1 by cancellation of c,a,n,v,a and s. By canvass=canvas and rase=raze, we have s=z=1.

Eventually, all 26 English letters will equal 1. Apparently, this was done for French and Czech.

• Perhaps one can start with a list of Russian homophones: ru.wiktionary.org/wiki/… Aug 16 '18 at 17:30
• It seems to be hard to get rid of щ (equal to ч though), у and ы without using some strange foreign toponyms. As for a list, this one is bigger: ru.wiktionary.org/wiki/… Aug 16 '18 at 18:14

бос = босс, без = бес, бал = балл, сум = сумм, мая = майя, тон = тонн, серб = серп, гриб = грипп, маг = мак, юг = юкк ⇒ с = з = л = м = й = н = б = п = г = к = 1.

спиться = спится = спица, питься = пицца, колоться = колодца ⇒ ться = тся = ца = цца = дца ⇒ ь = ц = д = 1, тя = а.

кот = код ⇒ т = д = 1, я = а.

лапать = лапоть ⇒ а = о.

ожёг = ожог ⇒ о = ё.

освищу = освещу = освящу ⇒ и = е = я = а = о = ё.

острова = острого, дров = дроф ⇒ ф = в = г = 1.

Finally, ж = ш (дужка = душка) and щ = ч (щитов = счетов), no idea how to move further. Feel free to edit.

• nice timing! (+1)
– Quassnoi
Aug 16 '18 at 19:01
• I knew ь = 1! Looks like I am learning something from Duolingo XD Thanks!
– BCLC
Aug 17 '18 at 0:09
• I'm rusty on group theory, but are you sure you can assert д = т = ц = ь = 1, я = а from your relations?
– Quassnoi
Aug 17 '18 at 0:42
• @Quassnoi right you are, д = т has to be deduced separately. Aug 17 '18 at 1:56

Russian is not as big on silent letters as English and French are, however, double letters in loanwords, devoicing the consonants and vowel reduction seem to be the most prominent vectors.

Here's what I have so far:

`# абвгдеёжзийклмнопрстуфхцчшщъыьэюя`
`# е и у хцч щ ы эюя` // not solved yet

Etymological ь:

ложь = лож `ь`

ъ as a prefix separator:

объём = обьём `ъ`

Silent й

Майя = мая `й`

Double consonants and devoicing:

крапп = крап `п`

крап = краб `б`

буфф = буф `ф`

лиф = лив `в`

кокк = кок `к`

маг = мак `г`

ватт = ват `т`

род = рот `д`

бос = босс `с`

рос = роз `з`

балл = бал `л`

сумм = сум `м`

тор = торр `р`

тон = тонн `н`

Double vowels:

Вантаа = ванта `а`

Vowel reduction

сома = сама `о`

ожог = ожёг `ё`

Double consonants and devoicing again (now that we have vowels)

жжём = жом `ж`

нож = нош `ш`