Y'all are by now aware of Friday's meteor, which busted a million square feet of windowpanes in Chelyabinsk, Russia. And I know what y'all are thinking: what a great opportunity to learn some Russian! Yes!
Chelyabinsk was a small town before WW2 turned it into a huge weapon-manufacturing city, beyond the reach of German bombers. Like most Russian, Chelyabinsk, Russia is pronounceable (and maybe understandable) if you know the letter-sounds. And you know most of them already:
Ч е л я б и н с к, Р о с с и я
Ch e l ya b i n s k, R o s s i ya
Not too bad, especially if you've had some exposure to Greek letters via math, physics, or fraternities. BTW, a Russian C always sounds like S.
Chelyabinsk churned out so many tanks that it was nicknamed Tankograd, Tank City. Yes, the Russian word for 'tank' is 'tank.'
Т а н к о г р а д
T a n k o g r a d
It's all Greek and Roman letters, not too tough. Tankograd made thousands of tanks at the Chelyabinsk Tractor Factory:
Челябинский тракторный завод
Chelyabinskiy Traktorniy Zavod
The 'iy' on the end makes the nouns into masculine adjectives because zavod / factory is masculine. But a Chelyabinsk newspaper might be called the Chelyabinskaya Gazette:
because a gazette, a newspaper, is feminine.
Among other weapons, Chelyabinsk made Katyushas, trucks mounted with rocket-launchers:
К а т ю́ ш а
K a t yu sh a
The Katyusha rocket-launcher was named after a girl in a popular wartime song who misses her soldier boyfriend. Katyusha means 'beloved Katie,' a diminutive term of endearment for a woman named
It's pronounced "Yekaterina."
And last is this easy one, which prompted the post. I expect you can figure it out on your own: