What is the meaning of this sentence? Если он хоть что-нибудь буркнет, я за себя не ручаюсь. I understand the literal meaning, or as Google Translate or DeepL translates it literally: If he muttered anything, I wouldn't be able to defend myself. However that doesn't really make sense in English. Can someone rephrase this in idiomatic English?

  • Normally, this site isn't meant to provide translations, but I'll add one below, which I hope you'll note before your query is taken down.
    – CocoPop
    Commented Sep 25, 2022 at 2:40
  • Could you provide more context? Commented Sep 26, 2022 at 14:12

2 Answers 2


In the absence of any context, my guess is this means: "If he blurts something out ('spills the beans'), I can't vouch for myself."

Another meaning of бу́ркнуть (impf. бурча́ть) is to grumble or growl, so the sentence might be read as "If he tries to complain / argue with me, I don't know what I might do (to him)."

"Я за себя не ручаюсь" is another idiom which literally means "I can't vouch for myself" and is often used as a threat ('I can't vouch that I won't hurt you') or simply to say "The deal is off", "All bets are off."

  • "я за себя не ручаюсь" - это точно не "I would't be able to guarantee what I said" Commented Sep 25, 2022 at 13:45
  • @PavelMayorov, ну почему же? "За себя" здесь скорее всего = "за свои слова", ручаться = vouch / guarantee. Commented Sep 26, 2022 at 14:03
  • "за себя" = "за свои действия" Commented Sep 26, 2022 at 14:22
  • @PavelMayorov, ОК, согласен. Убрал. Спасибо! Commented Sep 26, 2022 at 18:39

In idiomatic English, that'd be:

If he blabs one word (of this), I won't be responsible for my actions.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.