Is there any Russian word to denote the subject?
Стрелец in any of its meaning. But a female one, pls.
Potential (correct but not witnessed) words are also welcome.
If no single word is possible… more than a word will do.
Truly, I was sure there was such a word. But where?

What if the asked word works for стрелок also?

  • Стрелец originally meant a member of Marksman Troops (Стрелецкое Войско) which was a solely male profession, so no female form of that word exists.
    – Yellow Sky
    Jun 5, 2015 at 14:15
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    @YellowSky: originally it just meant "bowman", any person who practices archery.
    – Quassnoi
    Jun 5, 2015 at 14:18
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    For me, as a native Russian speaker, the word стрелец would sound strange if used for anyone or anything except a member of Стрелецкое Войско, as @YellowSky mentioned, or a person born in a period from November 23 to December 21 (Sagittarius constellation). If you mean anyone who shoots from something (a bow, a riffle etc.) the modern word is стрелок. стрелец in this sense is obsolete. Its female variant is женщина-стрелок and simply стрелок also will apply for a woman, For instance она - меткий стрелок, literally "she is a marksman".
    – d.k
    Jun 5, 2015 at 18:59
  • @user907860: for some reason, OP asked for стрелец in any of its meanings, not стрелок. Федот-стрелец of eponymous poem was neither a medieval Muscovite Marksman nor a known Sagittarius, still the word was used to describe him.
    – Quassnoi
    Jun 5, 2015 at 19:16
  • @Quassnoi - Anyway, Федот-стрелец is a character of a 20th century poem, and since it is a fairy-tale, he could well be a medieval Muscovite Marksman, why not? Do you have any proofs the word стрелец meaning "bowman" was used before the 16th century, that is before Стрелецкое Войско was formed?
    – Yellow Sky
    Jun 5, 2015 at 21:40

5 Answers 5


According to paradigm for words in -ец (when used to form an agent noun), it's replaced with -ица in feminine: певец/певица, красавец/красавица, ленивец/ленивица etc.

So feminine for стрелец would be стрелица.

It is attested in this XVIII century's poem:

Но что за красоты сияют
С гремящих верха колесниц,
Что рук искусством превышают
Диану и ее стрелиц?

В. П. Петров, "На карусель", 1766

Dahl's dictionary also mentions стрелица as an alternative name for arrowhead (Sagittariа sagittaefoliа, стрелолист)

  • Care to explain the downvote?
    – Quassnoi
    Jun 5, 2015 at 14:18
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    imho, a piece of poetry, not mention that it is from the 18th century, is not a reliable authority. I've just googled some example of a similar word mutilation, and have found a word "фармазон", which was being used by Pushkin and meant "франкмассон". But in my opinion it would be incorrect to use this word on everyday basis. The same is with "стрелица", it just is not used widely, or even at all. Referring to a "bowwoman" I would say "стрелец" or "женщина-стрелец".
    – d.k
    Jun 5, 2015 at 18:08
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    @user907860: Attestation does not mean "authority" or something like that, it just means that someone has ever used that word. Words like мшелоимство or козлогласование are not used on a daily basis either, now that we have стяжательство and трагедия, but it doesn't make them any less attested in Russian.
    – Quassnoi
    Jun 5, 2015 at 19:07
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    @qy-: I think I should clarify my comment before: there is a paradigm in Russian for feminine forms of words in -ец: певец/певица, любимец/любимица, красавец/красавица etc. When I gave my answer, I just applied the paradigm, and only later found out it was in fact attested. There is no such paradigm for words in -ок, only some ad hoc pairs like знаток/знатуха, ходок/ходачка etc. (examples above are from Dahl's dictionary). So out of context, if you ask "what's masculine for стрелица", you'd be given стрелец, not стрелок
    – Quassnoi
    Jun 7, 2015 at 7:14
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    @Quassnoi: Thanks! You completely clarified the topic for me. It could be really your 'full-weight' answer #2, or an update.
    – delete
    Jun 7, 2015 at 12:54

There is стрельчиха meaning "the wife of стрелец [rifleman]". A woman born as Sagittarius will say that she is стрелец.

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    ooh! Now I know why стрельчиха, my only guess, dissatisfied me as an answer: it has a different meaning!
    – delete
    Jun 6, 2015 at 10:38

Без разбора морфологии мы рискуем получить, ну, скажем так, приличное количество вопросов-калек, подобных этому. Давайте их сгенерируем:

Как будет женский род:

   Косец, дудец, игрец, гребец, братец, мудрец, горец ...?

Следовательно, заданный в OP вопрос лишь частный, а отвечать следует с позиций более общего случая.

Оказывается, что в русском языке

суффикс -ец характеризует мужской род  
суффикц -иц характеризует женский род

Словообразующая продуктивная функция выдает такие результаты:

  Красавец - красавица, молодец - молодица, ленивец - ленивица, ...

В некоторых случаях продуктивная функция -ец/-иц генерирует такие слова-пары, которые хотя и правильные синтаксически, но какая-то комплиментарная часть, мужская/женская, не приживается в языке.

  армеец, партиец, японец, газпромовец ... не получили пару с суффиксом  "-иц".

Если возникает необходимость именовать компактно, то есть, образовать слово нужно непременно, то включается в работу следующая словообразовательная функция, например, с суффиксом

 японец-японка, немец-немка, ариец-арийка, ... 

Если и эта функция не срабатывает, например, по критерию благозвучия, берется следующая словообразовательная функция, с продуктивным суффиксом -чих

 пловец-пловчиха ...

Некоторые слова имеют только синтаксис женского рода, напр. умница.

Какая ты умница по отношению к мальчику — употребимо.

Само слово умница, в контексте, потребует синтаксис женского рода для других согласованных с ним определяющих слов.

Таким образом, ответ заключается в выборе синтаксической функции словообразования, которые в русском языке хорошо известны. Прижилось ли слово стрелица в русском? -- очевидно, нет. Вопрос, почему, это наверное, целое исследование.

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    Ещё есть безсуффиксный вариант стервец-стерва, вдовец-вдова, но он редкий. Jun 7, 2015 at 8:37
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    @МаркИз , сестра-сестрица, брат-братец ;)
    – Avtokod
    Jun 7, 2015 at 8:46
  • Идеально. Perfect.
    – Vasil
    Jun 14, 2015 at 4:55
  • see also "хохол - хохлица"
    – Avtokod
    Jul 4, 2015 at 5:40

Despite the fact that this is not a single word, I believe that женщина-стрелец meets your needs (in any meaning of стрелец).


female-стрелец, it is like female-fireman.

Other variants that were given — "Стрельчиха", "Стрелица" — are literally correct but outdated, and aren't used. Use "Она — стрелец", "Она — стрелок".

about "Стрельчиха". It can be used as a some specific kind of humor, when you speak less literate than you can. For example to say Sagittarius about female)

Стрелец — now used only for "Sagittarius". No other use.

Стрелок — any human shooting of a hand weapon (gun, bow, crossbow). No female form.

about "-иха": врачиха (врач), ткачиха (ткач)

Врач (male) — врачиха (female, incorrect but used, correct: врач). "Врачиха" also may be used to say that a doctor (female) is rather rude and bad manners.

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