Russian Language Blog

Quiz: How Good Is Your Russian? Posted by on Jun 11, 2014 in language


Behold boys and girls, in this post you will be quizzed on your knowledge of Russian. Driven by the addictive nature of quizzes and a desire to freshen things up a bit for our readers, I decided to come up with my own quiz.

The quiz is not long but I believe it is pretty challenging. Regardless of your score, do not take it too seriously. It is simply meant to arm you with some new vocabulary. However, if you do happen to know some/most of the words, go ahead and pat yourself on the back 🙂 .

All of the words in question have multiple meanings. Your job is to determine the meaning of the word in provided context.

The answers are provided after the quiz. No peeking!

Ready, set, go!

1. Determine the meaning of the word чайник in the following sentence.Is it:

A. teapot

B. expert in the field

C. not an expert in the field

Слушай, хочу Сашку попросить помочь мне с алгеброй.

Сашку? Да ты че, он в этом деле чайник.

2. Determine the meaning of the word пилитьin the following sentence. Is it:

A. to praise

B. to nag

C. to saw

Наташа, перестань меня пилить.

3. What does the word отмороженный mean in the following sentence? Is it:

A. creep, jerk, weirdo

B. frostbitten

C. calm & reserved

– Ну что, рассказывай, как вечер провели.

– Да ну, нечего рассказывать. Он оказался отмороженным.

4. What does the word достал mean in the following sentence? Is it:

A. to get, to reach

B. to aggravate someone, to get on someone’s nerves

C. to please

– Кать, ты закончила статью? Она мне нужна к трем часам.

– Слушай, ты меня достал. Я тебе сказала, что закончу вовремя.

5. Determine the meaning of the word плевать in the following sentence. Is it:

A. to ignore, disregard

B. to spit

C. to respect

– Серега, по статистике 50 процентов браков заканчиваются разводом.

– Да плевать мне на твою статистику.

6. Determine the meaning of the word базар in the following sentence. Is it:

A. useless chatter

B. market

C. party

– Ты с Ниной по-прежнему общаешься?

– Нет, мы больше не общаемся. Она любит базар разводить, а меня это очень утомляет.

7. What does бабки mean in the following sentence? Is it:

A. old ladies

B. pretty ladies

C. money

Насколько мне известно, в их семье бабки всегда водились.

8. What does the phrase крыша поехала mean in the following sentence? Is it:

A. (he) lost his mind

B. (his) roof slid off

C. (he) needs money

…Он женился, много лет работал, разбогател. Потом он все потерял, включая жену и детей, и на этом фоне у него, говорят, крыша поехала.

9. What does the phrase капать на мозги mean in the following sentence?

A. to praise

B. to nag

C. to lie

Привет, ты чего такой злой сегодня?

– Да ну, шеф опять на мозги капает, пора работу менять.

10. Determine the meaning of the word грабли in the following sentence. Is it:

A. rake

B. legs

C. hands

Ну что, в кино пойдем?

– Пойдем, только при одном условии: грабли не распускать.

Now that you are done with the quiz, take a deep breath and go over the results 🙂 .


-Listen, I want to ask Sasha to help me with Algebra.

-Are you crazy, that is not his strong suit.


Natasha, stop nagging me.


-OK, tell me all about your evening.

-There is nothing to tell. He turned out to be a creep.


-Kate, are you done with the article? I need it by 3 o’clock.

-Listen, stop getting on y nerves (I am sick and tired of you). I told you I’ll be done on time.


-Sergei, according to statistics 50 % of marriages end up in divorce.

-I couldn’t care less about your statistics.


Are you still hanging out with Nina?

No, we don’t speak any more. She likes useless chatter (She talks too much) which I find very exhausting.


As far as I know, their family always had money.


…He got married, spent many years working, got rich. Then he lost everything, including his wife and kids; and that, according to what they say, made him lose his mind.


Hey, why so grumpy today?

Ah, the boss is nagging me again. It’s time to find a new job.


-Well, are we going to the movies?

-Sure, under one condition: keep your hands to yourself.

I hope you enjoyed my little challenge. Once again, do not despair if you didn’t get any of them right. The quiz is meant to be a vocabulary building exercise. Fell free to share your opinions and results. I would love to hear your feedback!

Всего хорошего!


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About the Author: Jenya

Born in Russia, I spent the first twenty years of my life in Orenburg, Russia and Mogilev, Belarus. For the last eleven years, I've lived in New Hampshire and Michigan, US. While I continue to absorb and adapt to American culture, I am always thrilled to share my Russian heritage with those who find it interesting. Travel, photography and art play a special part in my life. Twitter: @iamnx2u


  1. Sarah:

    Loved this! Thanks for the контрольная работа :)))

    • Jenya:

      @Sarah You are very welcome Sarah 🙂

  2. Bogdan:

    did 7 out of 10! Спасибо большое Женя.

    • Jenya:

      @Bogdan Bogdan, спасибо. What do you think needs improvement?

  3. Ed Porter:

    Yes, I like these words!)))) Thank you!

  4. Paul Perry:

    I, and others, would like more of these!!! Thanks

  5. Anna:

    One small mistake: in this case насколько is written together:
    “Насколько мне известно, в их семье бабки всегда водились. “, since the meaning is not about the quantity, but something like “as far as I know”.

    I, being Russian from Saint-Petersburg, have never ever heard the expression about грабли, and would not use отмороженный in this context (does not seem to suit, but it does have that kind of meaning).

    Then, in my opinion, there are words that you can use whenever in an informal talk, and some, which are more slang and I, for example, would not use them, like бабки or базар.

    • Jenya:

      @Anna Аня, спасибо. “Насколько” in this case is a great addition to the topic “mistakes native speakers make” 🙂 . “На сколько” и “насколько” are both present in the Russian language but can be easily misused. In my case, it was clearly an oversight.
      As far as the usage of these words goes, I would like to emphasize that I am not encouraging you to use these words (although you certainly can); I am simply trying to give you some good, actively used, slang words and phrases. The goal of the post is to learn to RECOGNIZE them, rather than utilize them 🙂 .

  6. samonen:

    I couldn’t figure out numbers 9 and 10. But now I do know what they mean, so thanks!

  7. Jacek:

    Nice one Jenya! Got 8 out of 10.

  8. давид:

    Спасибо большое)) имя моей женой Наташа, значит интересно читать) ну конечно не говорить))

    • Jenya:

      @давид Давид, the more you practice, the easier it becomes! Good luck to both of you!

  9. Криста:

    Спасибо Вам большое за практику! Я сама Американка, но сейчас живу в Киеве. Самое трудно для меня — понять сленг, поэтому было интересно и полезно! )))) P.S. Получилось 9/10 ))

    • Jenya:

      @Криста Криста, молодец! Так держать!

  10. khwaxak:

    После 20 лет попробовал мой русский язык, оказывается не забыл ещё
    your quiz helping me to refresh my Russian language.

    • Jenya:

      @khwaxak Пожалуйста! Заходите еще!

  11. Eva:

    10/10! Woohoo! Being a Slav really does help when learning Russian 😀