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Some Catch Phrases You Should Know Studying Russian


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Some Catch Phrases to Know

Russian language is very abundant for phraseological units. The role of such fixed phrases is important for Russian people and we involuntary use them in everyday life. So in this post you will find explanation of popular Russian catch phrases and interesting moments connected with the its appearing. We say and hear them in various situations, and you will not look strange if to use the idioms below appropriately.

Let’s begin with definition. Well, the term catch phrase means a group of fixed words, which came into general use from literature, historical sources, quotes of popular people, songs, folklore and so on and so forth. Actually, any language has idioms and proverbs. That is why people, who study foreign language, have to know those nuances to avoid misunderstanding in communication. The first phrase I want to discuss will be in Russian “Синий Чулок”. According to its origins, in 80s of 18 century the phrase was used for women, who preferred science and reading many books. A group of people arranged so called parties and discussed there the latest news in a world of science and literature. Benjamin Stillingfleet was the most active person there, besides he wore blue stockings. So this is the way this phrase was born. In our days a catch phrase “Синий чулок” mainly refers to women who study a lot but do not entertain.

I’m sure, many of you have read the tale Princess and the pea by Hans Christian Andersen. A prince decides to marry a “real princess” and puts a small pea in a feathered bed. The girl could not sleep that night, because of the pea and finally prince married her. So today this phrase is used when we want to characterize too pampered and spoiled person.

Sometimes Russian people use a phrase “панический страх”. This catch phrase comes from the Greek mythology. God of forests and fields Pan strikes terror into travelers and warriors. Frankly speaking, the word panic, that everyone knows today is associated with the God of nature Pan. Therefore “панический страх” can be used to describe sudden and terrifying fear.

We can say “тьма кромешная”, when we want to describe a very poor and bad life without happy moments. Firstly, this phrase was found in the Bible, written on the Slavonic language. It was for the Hell and dark underworld.

The last catch phrase, that I will explain in this post, has appeared thanks to Vladimir Lenin. He was a Russian revolutionary. Once he said a slogan, that we can still hear today. Учиться, учиться и учиться! This Russian idiom is very actual for students and other people, because the main aim in life is to study and grasp knowledge. It does not matter how old you are, you can study at any age.

In conclusion, phraseology is an indispensable part of any language. Using it you can accentuate on something particular or express own opinion in a funny way. Surely, using of fixed phrases depends upon situation and context. So think twice before you say something. I think, that colloquial language is the best way to experiment with idioms. Indeed, when you discuss important issues with the business partner, or write in formal style, so it is better to refuse from catch phrases. 

If you have any interesting idiom, which needs explanation, so write a comment and we will discuss it.

Good Luck!

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