Questions tagged [идиомы]

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16 views

Idiom: своя в доску, но не доска

I'm struggling to understand the meaning of this. Is it something like "it's what's inside that counts"?
2
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2answers
145 views

How would I say in Russian: “This made my day”?

I am not exactly asking for a translation, because the literal translation is obvious. I am rather looking for the closest expression that conveys the same meaning and emotions, so: How would I say &...
26
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4answers
14k views

If a Russian girl calls herself a thawing pike (тающая щука), what could it mean?

I recently had a video call with a Russian girl, and in the middle of the conversation she called herself тающая щука. That made no sense in the context, so I used a mirror to try to understand what ...
3
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2answers
172 views

Лысая башка, дай пирожка - what does it mean?

Лысая башка, дай пирожка - what does this saying mean? I know what it means literally, but in which situations would it usually be used, and where/how did it originate?
8
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4answers
1k views

How to translate “unscratchable itch” to Russian?

An unscratchable itch is an issue that is very important to a person, but which they cannot do anything about. What would a more or less close Russian equivalent (apart from журавль в небе)? Update 1: ...
22
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4answers
5k views

Is there a Russian equivalent of “red flag”?

In English, the term red flag is used as a metaphor to mean a sign suggestive of a possible danger or problem: (1) Boyfriend not showing you his home is a huge red flag. (Link) (2) I've just spent ...
1
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3answers
240 views

Why is this Russian expression an idiomatic example of mutually exclusive things?

The Russian idiom "и рыбку съесть, и на хуй сесть", whose literal meaning is "to eat fish and sit down onto a dick too," is an idiomatic way to say that your interlocutor is ...
4
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3answers
300 views

Can “ты ещё нас всех переживёшь” have a positive connotation?

A little granddaughter tells her grandma: ты ещё нас всех переживёшь (you will survive all of us) Grandma gets offended because she interprets it as a death wish. Is this reasonable?! Маленькая ...
26
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4answers
2k views

How can I understand this puzzling dialogue with “ну я имею в виду вообще”?

My Russian teacher recently had us, his students, listen some audio recordings of what he called "authentic everyday communications of Russians." We had to understand the dialogues and ...
6
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2answers
248 views

Figurative meaning of в полосочку

I have read in various sources : «жизнь в полосочку» or «через полосочку в клеточку» Is this roughly equivalent to saying “life is up and down?” I’m having trouble finding an explanation of this ...
3
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7answers
675 views

Why do Russians say that all men are billy goats (все мужики козлы)?

I was given a Russian song as a listening exercise, and, as far as I could discern, its chorus is: И мы не устаем, и с ночи до утра Мы можем говорить, говорить о мужиках. Бокал до дна в трудные ...
5
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3answers
1k views

How can I say in Russian “to see each other” and “to be exclusive to each other,” in the context of dating?

I cannot find the Russian phrases for these two stages of dating and am humbly asking for your help. I know that Russians say Маша встречается с Ваней (which literally means Masha regularly meets ...
4
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6answers
388 views

Is it a mistake to say, “Oвчинки выделка не стоит”(sic!)?

In a recent essay of mine, I accidentally mixed up the grammatical cases in an idiom. Namely, I wrote: овчинки выделка не стоит The most common variant of this idiom is: овчинка выделки не стоит ...
4
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3answers
396 views

What does “я сейчас в неадеквате” mean?

I just sent a message to a language exchange partner and instantly received the following response: давай завтра, я сейчас в неадеквате What does this expression mean? Has he tied one on?
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0answers
41 views

Coбака на сене — What does it mean? [duplicate]

What does it mean? Is this a Russian idiom?
5
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3answers
337 views

“Бьёт, значит любит?” - is it ironic?

Which relationship aspects are meant with this idiom, is it some specific irony?
1
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2answers
322 views

Where does the phrase “кто девушку ужинает тот ее и танцует” come from?

While listening to Pozner I've heard the phrase "кто девушку ужинает тот ее и танцует". Where does it come from?
2
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3answers
535 views

Origin of the Russian idiom “like a grass snake on a frying pan”?

When Russians say that you are like a grass snake on a frying pan ("как уж на сковородке"), they often mean that you are grilled by tough incriminating questions and desperately trying to save your ...
1
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0answers
241 views

Meaning and usage of the Russian proverbs that seemingly discourage proactiveness [closed]

The Russian language abounds in wise proverbs, but I am very much confused by some of them, specifically by those that appear to discourage proactiveness. I am at a loss as to how such a good thing as ...
9
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8answers
580 views

What does the idiom “что уж там” mean?

I am very much puzzled by the idiom "что уж там" and its sister "чего уж там". Let me show you a few sentences: (1) Давайте везде курить, что уж там, детям в лицо: депутат Госдумы ...
22
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5answers
2k views

What is the meaning of: “- Отнеси кота на веранду. - Да уж лежит там.”

In a recent test I had to translate the following: -- Отнеси кота на веранду. -- Да уж лежит там. My translation was: "Bring the cat to the verandah." "It is already lying there.&...
2
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7answers
223 views

“On the side” — «На стороне»?

I have tried to translate into Russian the sentence: I am studying the Russian language on the side. I.e., I just occasionally spend time on it. Google Translate says: Я изучаю русский язык на ...
4
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6answers
402 views

What is the Russian equivalent of the proverb 水清ければ魚棲まず (if the water is clear, fish won't live there)?

The proverb's meaning is that just as fish prefer muddy waters and avoid clear streams, people generally do not associate with those who are too ideal in terms of ethics, manners, and habits. In other ...
2
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3answers
220 views

Possible to use Я хотел бы without direct object?

This quite a short question. I was wondering how to express in Russian the sentence "I wish!" without any direct object. As a silly example, in English you could say — Have you finished your project? ...
1
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0answers
67 views

Russian sport idioms in business [closed]

Are there any sport idioms (or war, or maybe some other topic) used frequently in Russian business discussions? This topic came up in conversation, and we were unable to think of any obvious ones. ...
1
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7answers
488 views

What is the Russian equivalent of 干物女 (dried fish woman)?

Literally meaning dried fish woman, the popular slang 干物女 is used to call a woman in her twenties or older who, as nicely summarized in Wikipedia, has many of the following traits: Her text ...
4
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6answers
366 views

What is the Russian idiomatic term for Western hypocrisy?

There is a view in Asian countries that the Western culture is hypocritical, and there is even a special term for this - "Western hypocrisy." Roughly speaking, the view is that whilst the Westerners ...
3
votes
3answers
406 views

Is there an idiomatic way to tell a Russian to talk quietly?

The short version of my question is: How can I idiomatically ask a Russian to talk quietly, regain his composure and calmness, stop being emotionally intrusive and domineering, and think in terms of ...
3
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6answers
427 views

Correct use of the the idiom 'Гнать/Катить бочку'

I heard both versions, which one is correct? 'Гнать' or 'Катить'? If I want to say: "не гони бочку на китайцев, падла. кто бы нам пособил электронику и одёжку, если не их пацаны на тех жутких ...
13
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7answers
4k views

Russian equivalents of 能骗就骗 (if you can cheat, then cheat)

On this SE there have been many interesting questions about Russian equivalents of various idiomatic expressions and proverbs of the French language and other languages, and I decided to make my own ...
5
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3answers
330 views

What is the logic of the expression “только и всего”?

Some time ago I watched the excellent Russian movie "The Horde" with English subtitles and got intrigued by a few expressions from there, with one of them being "только и всего." The movie is on ...
8
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3answers
916 views

What is the precise meaning of “подсел на мак”?

Some months ago I saw a Russian gomokunarabe player saying in an online chat to his compatriot, А я подсел на мак. I cannot recall the context. I can only recall that their chat looked highly ...
8
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2answers
2k views

The origin of “за двумя зайцами погонишься”

За двумя зайцами погонишься, ни одного не поймаешь. We have the same proverb, 二兎を追う者は一兎も得ず, which is considered borrowed from somewhere, so I am curious whether we borrowed it from the Russians or ...
16
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3answers
1k views

“Отведать тунца” - what does this idiom mean?

I frequently play gomokunarabe, a Japanese strategy game, on an international server and sometimes face Russians as opponents, as a variant of this game is apparently popular in Russia and known as &...
11
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5answers
3k views

What people are called boars (“кабан”) and why?

I discovered yesterday that the Russians often use the word "кабан" ("wild boar") or its Old Russian analogue "вепрь" to talk about people: (1) Что ещё раз доказывает, ...
5
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5answers
849 views

When and why did Asian and Southern people start to be called “чурки”?

Wiktionary gives eight different meanings as well as the etymological origin of the word "чурка": Meanings 1-4 are various small pieces of wood or metal, Meaning 5 is a simpleton or ...
4
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2answers
210 views

Тhe idiomatic expression “на три господа бога”

Reading a Russian book about a Russo-Japanese war, I saw the idiomatic expression на три господа бога: Тут, брат, все сделано на три господа бога. I performed a Google search and found some results ...
1
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0answers
124 views

Translating the untranslatable: Are there good translations of Russian wordplay jokes about Stierlitz? [closed]

The Russian wordplay jokes about Stierlitz - the Russian James Bond - are among the funniest, but are considered untranslatable. But are they really untranslatable? Being a big fan of my language and ...
3
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3answers
217 views

Meaning of “компостировать мозги”

I need help with the meaning of the idiom "компостировать мозги" the full sentence being "прекрати компостировать мозги". What is the English version of this
3
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5answers
336 views

По-русски, пожалуйста!

In English, you can say "In English, please!" to mean that you'd like a simpler explanation (when someone IS speaking English but using technical terms that a regular person wouldn't understand). ...
10
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1answer
427 views

The origin of ни пуха ни пера - к чёрту

Why do we say ни пуха ни пера wishing someone good luck? The traditional response is also interesting. People are expected to say к чёрту. What is the origin of the idiom?
-4
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1answer
140 views

Meaning of “ни в зуб ногой - ни в жопу пальцем” [closed]

What does the mean expression “ни в зуб ногой - ни в жопу пальцем” ?
4
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1answer
154 views

Syntax of “Он как подорвался всё жрать”

I read this in a story online: Вечером сестра пришла забирать, а пацан на полу лежит сытый и даже конструктор собирать не хочет. Я говорю: "Таня, а чё ты ему сказала такого? Он как подорвался ...
6
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1answer
170 views

“You get the picture”

The literal translation that is found to be most closely equivalent to the English meaning of this is Вы поЛучите картину, but I don’t know if that is just the literal meaning of saying ‘...
5
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5answers
298 views

Russian equivalents of “all men, young and old”

Выходит, что мужчины -- что старые, что молодые -- просто не могут пройти мимо такой красавицы. In conversation, I wanted to express the idea of "all men, young and old". I wonder if my phrasing ...
7
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2answers
295 views

Meaning of “тренироваться на кошечках”

I Listened to a podcast, in which the speaker attempted to explain what тренироваться на кошечках means and how it's used, yet I failed to grasp the meaning. Can someone explain?
2
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2answers
355 views

Equivalent of “One man's trash is another man's treasure”?

is there a russian equivalent to that idiom? Edit: The meaning is not literal but, typically, a commentary on how there is no judging for taste — what one person may think is worthless may be ...
8
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1answer
120 views

The origin of “заморить червячка”

"Заморить червячка" is an idiom which can be loosely translated as "to get a bite to eat", or "to have a snack / to have something to eat". Which worm does the expression refer to? What is its ...
4
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2answers
171 views

The meaning of “бедный родственник”

Literally "бедный родственник" means "poor relative". But it doesn't make much sense in the following context: Что ты смотришь на меня как бедный родственник? What does this idiom mean? And what ...
3
votes
1answer
246 views

The origin of “на авось”

The Russian idiom сделать что-то на авось is very interesting indeed. I know that it may be similar to the English idiom on the off-chance, which means relying on the remote possibility (if you can ...