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Lawmakers Need to Brush Up on Their Russian

Published: December 20, 2013 (Issue # 1791)

Законопроект: draft law

My heart did a little dance of joy last week when I read the text of proposed changes to the Russian law on state language that had, by one count, 26 grammatical and other errors. See, it is a difficult language!

As it's always helpful to learn from others' mistakes, I've put together a little Friday quiz. Note that my translations do not reflect the mistakes in the text.

1. How many mistakes are in this sentence?

В Федеральном законе «О государственном языке РФ», в которую данным законопроектом предлагается внести изменение, отсутствует норма, в которой было бы прописана обязанность иностранных граждан, лиц без гражданства и граждан РФ при исполнении должностных обязанностей и на рабочем месте употреблять и общаться исключительно на государственном языке или на официальных языках субъектов РФ (In the Federal law "On the state language of Russia," which this draft law is proposed to amend, there is no stipulation that would mandate the responsibility of foreign citizens, people without citizenship and Russian citizens to use and communicate exclusively in the state language or the official languages of the constituent parts of Russia while conducting business in the workplace).

a) None. Sounds OK to me.

b) Three, if you mean just grammatical errors.

c) Ten, if you're taking off for style.

Answer: (b)

There is incorrect agreement between закон and в которую. It should be была бы прописана обязанность. And you can't употреблять на государственном языке.

2. What's the most egregious mistake in the following sentence?

Pages: [1] [2]


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Sunday, Apr. 20

Celebrate Easter at Pavlovsk during the Easter Fair that begins today and continues through next Sunday. Visitors will have the chance to paint Easter eggs and children can take part in games as well as help decorate a tree in honor of Christianity’s holiest day.

Today is one of the final days to see the exhibit Cacti — Children of the Sun at the Peter the Great Botanical Garden. Starting Apr. 17, budding botanists will marvel at the variety and beauty of the desert’s most iconic plant.

Monday, Apr. 21

Improve your grasp of Neruda, Bolano and Marquez at TrueDA’s Beginners Spanish Lesson this evening at their location on the Petrograd Side. An experienced teacher will be on hand to help all attendees better understand the intricacies of the language and improve their accent.

Tuesday, Apr. 22

SPIBA’s Breakfast with the Director event series continues as the association welcomes Andrei Barannikov, general director of SPN Communications, to the Anna Pavlova Hall of the Angleterre Hotel this morning at 9 a.m. Attendees must confirm their participation by Apr. 21.

The AmCham Environment, Health and Safety Committee Meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. this morning in the their St. Petersburg office.