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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

Oksana: [Здравствуйте, меня зовут Оксана]. I’m and we’re still in the middle of our trace to Russian wisdom. The proverbs that we are learning in these series are the synthesis of Russian culture and specifics, the experience of the generations and my interpretation of this powerful combination. Oops! I think today’s saying has little to do with wisdom, but it’s ok. You’ll know another side of the Russian character. You can call it “boldness”. You’re also free to call it like a rationality and responsibility; I leave it to your judgment.
Oksana: Here’s the saying that reflects a great deal of a typical Russian personality: [Была не была]. We can translate it as: “There was, there wasn’t”, and it makes little sense to a former’s ear. The English version of it is “Whatever betide!”. [Была] is the word for “was”, [не] stands for “not” and [была] again, which makes the whole phrase sounds as: “Was, not, was”. I guess this is the case where you shouldn’t try to look for an etymology оf the phrase. It’s never going to sound logical, so I advise you to remember it as it is. You might use the phrase into situations where you’re not sure whether you should do something or not, when you’re afraid of possible consequences of your actions or you’re not just clear about them and finally you say: [Была не была], and do it despite your fears and all the possible outcomes. Yes, Russians are totally capable of ignoring the rational and reasonable voice in their minds and taking risks contrary to common sense. But, will I calling it healthy boldness? Thanks for listening and see you soon! [Пока].


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Wednesday at 06:30 PM
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RussianPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 10:45 PM
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Hello robert groulx,

You are welcome 😄

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robert groulx
Monday at 09:04 AM
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thank you for the lesson transcript


RussianPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 06:10 PM
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Hi Janet Gidley,

Thank you for posting!

We appreciate your suggestion.

Please, let us know if you have any question.



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Janet Gidley
Saturday at 12:24 PM
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in pdf's hot and hungry change accent a lot. Wouldn't it be helpful to show where the accent changes?