Russian Language Blog

Word of the Week: трезвость [sobriety] Posted by on Sep 15, 2008 in Uncategorized

«Только трезвая Россия станет великой!»[Only a Sober Russia Will Become Great!] 

Since I’m back in Russia I am also fully and completely back in the blogging game, now that I once again can catch the country of interest in her everyday activities, like for example this poster above. I found it on the wall of a corridor in my university earlier today. The poster was not a complete shocker to me, as I and probably everybody else have known about Russians’ relationship with alcohol [i.e. vodka] for some time. Adding to this, last Saturday the first ever «день трезвости» was ‘celebrated’ here in Yekaterinburg. I didn’t find out about until Sunday night – as I was being served a vodka martini – but could at least pride myself at having been sober the previous day. But enough about me, let’s instead take a closer look at word of the week and it’s ‘relatives’, with ‘relatives’ meaning words that have some kind of relation to it.

трезвость = sobriety; temperance; abstinence

«трезвость ума» = cool-headedness

трезвый= 1. sober; not drunk, 2. colloq. who does not drink; teetotaling, 3. fig. sober; realistic

«У него взгляд на жизнь не очень трезвый» = His view on life isn’t very realistic.

трезво = adv. soberly

трезветь(impfv.) отрезветь (pfv.) = to sober up; become sober

«Подутроонаначалатрезветь» = Toward morning she began sobering up.

трезвенник = colloq. teetotaler

And one last very useful word when it comes to discussing sobrietry with Russians [but be warned – it is far from ‘literary’ in any means, and should only be used among good friends or with strangers that could become good friends]:

«сухой закон» = dry law’

«У вас сейчас сухой закон?» =  Are you drinking now (these days)? [lit. ‘are you having a dry law now?’, a question that could be good to pose from time to time, as Russians will sometimes, not all, but some, try not to drink from in periods of sobriety].

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  1. Stas:

    What is the reason for the move? I kinda like the old layout better when the comments were on the same page with the main blog. And will I recieve the e-mail notifications for this one as I used to for the old one?

    And as for трезвость, I just stopped smoking after 24 years of non-stop-lighting-cigarettes-those-filthy-cancer-sticks. And now I feel so great and happy. I wish the same for every smoker – quit and be happy.

  2. Anyse Joslin:

    Ко мне когда я прочитала это, это кажеться не правильно: Вот предложениеЖ

    «Под утро она начала трезветь» = Toward morning she began sobering up.

    По мнению, по-английский это значит – Toward morning, she began to sober up.

    Я переводила это с инфинитивом потому что это предложение без причастии.

    Эсли бы предложение было – «Под утро она начала трезвеющая (или тревая?).»

    Пожалуйста, объясняйте что есть правильно иле эсли бы оба они правильно.

    Благодарю вас за ответа.


    Я только изучаю русскому языку дома без посторонней помощи! Сказали мне что я говорю с правильном москвическом акцентои. С этом я счастливая.

  3. nemtyrev:

    Ну пока в России и на Украине магазины живут только за счет продажи водки

  4. Цой Жив:

    Можно и поспорить по этому вопросу, ведь только в споре может зародиться истина. 🙂

  5. Владимир:

    А это Вы написали на основе исключительно Вашего личного опыта?