Translation Mistake in a Toilets at the Eiffel Tower

One would think that such a popular destination as a toilet on an Eiffel Tower in Paris would have perfect or at least proofread signs in different languages...hélas...just look at the orange sign which reads HOMME in French which means MEN in English and МУЖЧИНА in Russian. Well, the Eiffel Tower management neglected to hire a professional Russian translator who would not make such a silly mistake as to translate MEN as ЛЮДИ which stands for PEOPLE in Russian language. In other words, a Russian-speaker who does not understand English or French or any other language displayed on the sign will be easily confused and might even go to a wrong section of the toilet which might lead to a great embarrassment.
Toilet Sign on Eiffel Tower with a Russian Mistake

Now, take a look at the second large sign which points your attention to a security checkpoint location in a Baltimore–Washington International Airport. If you speak Russian, you can easily find the translation mistake which was done when someone translated the word SECURITY as БЕЗБЕДНОСТ which means to be well off. Well, it appears that this word does mean 'security' in Macedonian language, so, not a real mistake but it might seem like it to a Russian speaker.

Great Patriotic War Questions Asked in Russia

These days people in Russia talk a lot about the heroes of the Great Patriotic War and its main events. It is important to remember what exactly and at what costs the Soviet nation contributed for the entire world.

There are things, which everybody has to know; especially in a country, which defeated fascism and paid 27 million lives for that. The heroes’ names, the names of villages and towns, which survived combats, had long ago become the national symbols in Russia. Moreover, it is difficult to find more significant dates in the history of Russia than May 9th and June 22nd. That is why the very question about the date of the beginning and the end of the Great Patriotic War seems inexplicable.

Nevertheless, there was conducted a survey among the public on the city streets in Russia in 2017. Below are some of the questions which were asked.

Which garrison had faced the fascists’ attack first?

There were some people among the youngsters, who remember the feat of the defenders of Brest Fortress.
I'm dying, but I won't surrender! - inscription found inside the Brest Fortress

How many days did the Siege last?

The Leningraders had been fighting with death during 872 days – in the Leningrad siege, under fire, and the toughest trial was famine. During the hardest days only 125 grams of black bread mixed with wooden chips was rationed per one person. 600 thousand people died in the city merely because of the extreme famine. One can never forget such things.

In addition, during this entire period the only thread connecting sieged Leningrad with back land was the road across Lake Ladoga. In winter period and on the thin ice, the supplies were transported to the city and people were evacuated from it under the continuous airstrikes of the enemy. The deadly but salvational route was called The Road of Life.
Road of Life - Lake Ladoga route, WW2

Who is Tanya Savicheva?

A small girl from Leningrad (Leningrad was renamed to St. Petersburg) left the short but shrill diary behind, in few lines of which there was the entire inescapable horror of the blockade. There were dates of death of all her relatives, one after another. The last note was: “Everyone is dead. Only Tanya is left”.
Tanya Savicheva

Who is Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya?

Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya was a Soviet partisan caught by the Germans and executed after the unhuman tortures. Before she died, she had shouted to her tormentors: “You can't hang us all. They will avenge me”.
Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya before hanging

The list is not over. For example, Alexey Maresyev’s distinguished action at war, the feat of Alexander Matrosov, the facts which are known about aviation pilot Nikolai Gastello... For everyone to whom the Victory is priceless, Nazism is the absolute evil. Nevertheless, the time undermines the reminiscences about the places where the fascists committed their atrocities. And provided that nearly half of the respondents knew that Auschwitz was a concentration camp, almost nobody except few remembered the events which took place in Belarusian village Khatyn.

Not many could tell about the events directly relating to the holiday being celebrated on May 9th. May 1945, Berlin, Victory Banner above the defeated Reichstag. None of the surveyed knew that Lieutenant Berest headed the battle team, which hoisted the scarlet ensign on the building. Only a small amount of people remembered Mikhail Yegorov and Meliton Kantaria who had left their mark in history.

For some reason the Victory Parade of 1945 is being forgotten in a similar way – the very parade where the victorious soldiers threw the Nazi standards down next to the Mausoleum. No other than Marshal Georgy Zhukov commanded this parade.
Georgy Zhukov during the Parade on Red Square

First Woman in Space - Valentina Tereshkova Turns 80 in 2017

We'll try to do it

"We'll try to do it" – these words can be referred to Valentina Tereshkova's entire life experience. She is always like this – she says something and she does it. She was always calm and even-tempered in both words and deeds. Even when she tells you about the incident in space in 1963 – it sounds like nothing serious happened there, though she could've never returned back home from that flight.

Valentina in spacesuit
Nevertheless, no one who has ever been orbiting the Earth will ever be able to forget this experience. Only the very few are entitled to conquer the vastness of the Universe. Valentina Tereshkova is included in this club of the chosen ones forever.

Valya (which is a short form for a Russian female name Valentina) had flown into space only once to become a legend once and for all. She regretted badly that she never had another chance to fly to the stars. Valya and Yuri Gagarin were told to stay on Earth.

In the history of space exploration, Valentina Tereshkova will always stay not only the first, but also the only woman who had performed the individual flight into space. Indeed, all other female astronauts and cosmonauts, for whom she had uncovered the stars, flew there as crew members.

Path to the first woman cosmonaut

Yaroslavl is her hometown. She began to work there at the factory as a weaving machine operator.
As a young girl, besides working, Valya Tereshkova studied at a technical school. She also liked jumping with a parachute. She had carried out 90 parachute jumps in Yaroslavl Aeroclub. They performed land and water jumps in Volga River.

In 1962, this hobby of hers had brought her to Cosmonaut Training Centre. Five applicants, including Valentina, had been chosen out of hundreds of others to join the first female cosmonaut corps.

The training course took more than a year. Daily drillings on the brink of the human capacities. Tereshkova was in a centrifuge where overloads were extreme. The mass of the body increased twelvefold. Tereshkova was in an isolation chamber where she spent ten days in silence, completely isolated.

During that time, she read Nekrasov and told about Volga River. She read both Pushkin and her favorite author - Lermontov.

Chaika - Triumph of the Soviet Cosmonautics

June 16, 1963 is the day of triumph for the Soviet cosmonautics. For the first time ever a woman, Valentina Tereshkova with a call sign "Chaika" (which is translated from Russian as Seagull), had flown into space. Later on, the newspapers would cover this flight as the flight under normal conditions. Only tens of years later, Tereshkova would admit that a deviation had taken place. It nearly cost Valentina her life.

It happened when the spacecraft had been deployed in orbit, and she noticed that she would not be able to return on Earth, because the spacecraft was not oriented for the orbit ejection, but vice versa – for the orbit raising. She reported to the Earth team, received the necessary coordinates and made corrections. Then everything went normally.

"Chaika" spent almost three days and nights orbiting Earth 48 times. On her return back to Earth, Valentina Tereshkova went to her hometown Yaroslavl and, of course, visited the factory first. The slogan – "Well done, Valya!" – was made before her visit in June of 1963. The city had been celebrating this event for three days.

Not only the city - the entire world applauded her. People wrote letters to her, dedicated poems and songs. The Poles presented one song to her – "Valentina-twist" sung by Edita Piekha.

Valentina didn't belong to herself anymore

After this flight Valentina didn't belong to herself anymore. She always did her best to use her popularity to help other people. Nowadays, Valentina Tereshkova is the deputy of the State Duma (The State Duma is an equivalent of the parliament of the Russian Federation). For all the rest of people, she is Major General and the legend of cosmonautics possessing a colossal willpower. Tereshkova is a Hero of the Soviet Union - this title was the highest distinction in the USSR. However, in the family circle she is a completely different Valya.
Valetina Tereshkova, year 2017

In person, she is very comfortable, inviting and homelike. She is mother with a capital letter "M". She is also a grandmother. She does not like using the word "grandmother", though she has two grandsons whom she loves very much.

The Last Duel and Death of Alexander Pushkin

Fatal shot

On February 8, 1837 or exactly 180 years ago, the fatal shot was fired; it deprived Russia of its greatest poet. Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin was deadly wounded in the duel. Hundreds of writings have been compiled about this tragedy, but to these days, the researchers discover more and more new details, often controversial and mysterious ones regarding Pushkin’s death.

It was -15C (5F), moderately windy and snowy at the site of the duel on the bank of Chornaya Rechka (Russian translation of the name of this St. Petersburg river is Black River).

Pushkin duel

Pushkin’s firearm and details of the duel

Pushkin’s pistol had been lost. However, there are similar firearms produced by Le Page manufacturer in the Museum of Artillery. The lead bullet is more than one centimeter in diameter, the weight is almost 18 grams, and the barrel is rifled. During its flight the bullet spun and knocked the man down even by a simple touch.

The opponents had to move forward towards each other to the distance of ten steps and then stop and they had to start moving forward from the distance of twenty steps. They could fire immediately. Pushkin fought duels four times and never fired first.  Apparently, d'Anthès knew about this Pushkin’s duel trait.

Georges-Charles de Heeckeren d'Anthès was a French military officer who lived in Russia in 1830s.
It is said that d'Anthès was extremely self-possessed and that he outfoxed Pushkin. He fired a shot when they were only one-step away from the barriers.


Autopsy report – there was none

In those days, nobody made autopsy reports. More likely, the bullet entered the left side of Pushkin’s body, fractured the hipbone and stuck in the sacrum.

D’Anthès most probably aimed for the leg, just so he could be finished with this fight as soon as possible and without any fatal consequences.

The pistol slightly jumped on firing. Moreover, if the bullet entered the stomach, it meant that d'Anthès aimed the lower region, for example, the hip. This is almost a sensation – it looks like the Frenchman did not want the poet’s death! After the shot, Pushkin fell down and allegedly dropped the pistol in the snow; the second gave him another one.  However, the duel experts do not accept this universally acknowledged version.

In those times, there was an unwritten rule: if the opponent was wounded or dropped the firearm, the fight could be stopped.

Nevertheless, the duel continued and Pushkin fired in return. D'Anthès fell down. The deadly force of LePage – it would be revealed later that the bullet bounced off the button of the uniform. D'Anthès walked away. Pushkin was dragged towards the carriage.


After the duel

One of the seconds, attaché of the French Embassy d’Archiac, he was a shirker and could not drag heavy objects. Another second Danzas – his right hand was bandaged, that meant that he could drag only with his left hand. Therefore, they dragged the victim with the damages sacrum several meters in the snow! 

At last, the coachman was called and he figured out to make a sleigh taking down a fence. It was approximately seven versts (versta is a Russian unit of length which equals to 0.66 miles) from Chornaya Rechka to the apartment on the Moyka. The trip took an hour and a half. According to the temporary medical professionals, Pushkin lost almost half of his blood on the way home. He was then put on a sofa in the apartment. He never stood up from that sofa again.

Danzas spent one more hour looking for a doctor in Saint Petersburg. He visited three surgeons and none was at home. By a wild chance, moving along Nevsky prospect he met obstetrician Scholtz, who had administered first aid to Pushkin after two and a half hours after the injury. Can you imagine that a gynecology specialist provided medical aid to Pushkin! It would be an equivalent of a certified Russian translation is to be performed by a person who can speak both Russian and English languages but does not have an education in linguistics.

Later on, the concilium of the best physicians of the capital was assembled. They prescribed a so-called conservative treatment.

Pushkin said that the torments and pain was so horrible that maybe it would be better to shoot himself. Not because he was not able to suffer this pain, but because he was afraid of terrifying Natalia Nikolayevna Pushkina-Lanskaya. He was told: “Moan, it will be easier”. And he replied: “My wife will hear, I can’t”.

Pushkin died within two days. Autopsy was performed right in the entrance hall. No records were kept, the doctors were afraid of the arrival of the police, the bullet had not been found in the body at all. Natalia Nikolayevna who waited behind the closed doors together with the children had almost lost her sanity. Meanwhile thousands of people gathered around their house.

D'Anthès moved to France and lived until the age of 83. He became a senator, but during all his life, the European newspapers wrote about him as the murderer of the Great Russian poet.

Pushkin's death

Lenkom Theater Celebrates 90 Years

The legendary theater stage has turned 90 years old. The theater's troupe celebrates this festival the same way as it acts on the stage – with energy, humor and optimism.

Lenkom - Six letters. This is the abbreviation, introduced by the generations of spectators, and these letters are more than just the abbreviation. Lenkom also stands for Lenin's Komsomol. The official name of the theater is State budgetary institution of culture of the city of Moscow - Moscow state theater - Lenkom.

Lenkom Theater building in Moscow, year 2017

The first spectators entered this building in 1927. At that time, a troupe consisting of enthusiastic semiprofessionals staged the plays in a former merchant club and tried to prove that the Theater of Young Workers had a right for existence. And it would have become “Lenkom” only in 1938. At that moment, it was directed by Bersenev, and later on by glorious Anatoliy Efros. But the real success was achieved in 1973 with the new art director Mark Zakharov. Like nobody else, he realized and still realizes what the theater hit is like, it’s when each play thrills everybody in the house to the bottoms of their hearts.

The theater must be a performance. A notion of a professional play is the following – even if foreigners come without a Russian interpreter, they still must take a delight in what is happening on the stage, otherwise, it is not the theater after all.

In the Soviet period the tickets to Lenkom could be exchanged for scarce food or clothes. In the nineties students reserved places in a come-in from five in the morning, marking ordinal numbers on their hands.

Congratulations, Lenkom!

2017 Is Commencing With MiG-35 Flight Testing In Russia

This machine is so smart that it can define the most threatening target by itself. This fighter jet is equipped like a jet from a futuristic movie; it can bear laser weapons under its wings. This is the plane which was highly anticipated! And January 26, 2017 was the day of its first test flight.

We are talking about Mikoyan MiG-35 Fulcrum-F -
a Russian fighter 4++ aircraft.

MiG-35 Full View, January 2017
According to experts, it surpasses the foreign counterparts in its characteristics. The entire jet is manufactured in Russia. All systems are domestically-designed. The pride of the engineers is the onboard digital computer. The fighter can “see” everything within a radius of 300 kilometers and control 10 targets simultaneously as well. It automatically defines which target constitutes the most dangerous threat. Its missile can destroy air, ground and surface targets.

MiG-35 sideways

On the other hand, it will be difficult to shoot down this MiG. The fighter possesses several protection levels. They can deceive guidance systems and make the fighter invisible for the radars of the enemy.
The fighter is specially designed for war-fighting within high-intensity conflicts as well as for the withstanding a high-density antiaircraft defense. The strong performance of the aircraft is achieved due to the new first-ever complex of onboard defense as well as the new infrared search and track system.

This 4++ Generation fighter is close to the fifth generation. This aircraft has a good export potential, we mean that another aircraft – MiG-29 (Fulcrum) – is intensively used in more than 30 countries.
MiG-35 outweighs its predecessor MiG-29. Now the flying range is not 2,000 kilometers but 3,500 kms. This new fighter can bear twice as many missiles including weapon, which is just being developed at the present time – laser.

According to the test pilot, all goals and results are completely achieved, all onboard systems function normally, the power unit and integrated flight control system function normally as well.

The qualitative evaluation by the test pilots is positive.

MiG-35 will enter the service with the army in 2019.

MiG-35 take-off

Kavkazskaya Plennitsa or Kidnapping, Caucasian Style - 50th Anniversary!

Kavkazskaya Plennitsa or Kidnapping, Caucasian Style - 50 years of great humor!

One of the most beloved movies of the Soviet era is celebrating its 50th anniversary this 2017 year. The official and full name of the movie is Kavkazskaya Plennitsa, ili Novye Priklyucheniya Shurika. Russian to English translation of the film is Kidnapping, Caucasian Style

The Coward, the Fool and the Pro of Kavkazskaia Plennitsa

This is the classics for the ages. The mountains, sun, songs and jokes. The new sightseeing attractions appeared in Crimea after the shot.  
We don’t know for sure where this story took place, but some of the rumors suggest these places: Alushta, South Demerdji, Yalta, Bakhchysarai district. 
The story of the girl kidnapped by the loving dzhigit laid the foundation for the nationwide adorable comedy film. Captured by the beauty of Crimea, he organized the shooting location in preserved area “The Valley of Ghosts”. It’s all here: both the mountains and the sea.
The phrases and even the scenes from the film have been widely quoted for so long. The most famous stairs site is where “an athlete, a member of the Komsomol, and a beauty” went downstairs so gracefully. This staircase in Alushta is still called – Ninochka’s.
Yuri Nikulin scratching  from beneath the blanket
As legend has it, Gaidai gave a bottle of champagne to actors for each joke they proposed. In that scene, which was proposed by Yuri Nikulin, the heel was scratched by the director’s very hand from beneath the blanket.
Tens of Crimeans had been engaged in minor casts of the “Kidnapping, Caucasian Style”. 
Both the prosecutor’s house from where Shurik was taken to the psychiatric clinic and tovarisch Saakhov’s dacha are located in the very center of Alushta near Genoese fortress. And the militsiya department was in fact the building of the local Civil Status Registration Office (it's a place where Russian marriage certificates are issued to the newly-wed couples).
In the “Kidnapping, Caucasian Style” it was the last time when the Coward, the Fool and the Pro appeared in public together.
In 1967, the year of the film’s release, more than 70 million people had watched it – every third citizen of the Soviet Union. The film is so adorable that even fifty years after its release, the excursions in the footsteps of the “Kidnapping, Caucasian Style” are being arranged in Crimea all year round. 

Translation Mistake That Caused Mars Fever

Is there life on Mars? 
140 years ago, maybe for the first time ever, scientists started to research the Red Planet, having assumed that a civilization had existed there in the past. Mars owes such an increased attention to a translator’s mere mistake. It was the translation mistake which caused the so-called “Mars Fever” all around the world.
Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory, St. Petersburg, Russia
This whole Martian mess was caused by an Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli. Almost 160 years ago, he worked as a trainee at Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory which is located 19 km (11.8 miles) south of St. Petersburg. In 1877, Giovanni made a discovery which turned the world upside down.
Italian Canali
Channels of Mars sketched by Giovanni Schiaparelli
The scientist discovered the structures which he called the channels of Mars. He sketched the complete geometrical network of these straits-channels or 'canali'. Italian word 'canale' (plural form canali) can be translated as 'channel' in English language.
During the publication of the newly discovered material about Mars, Italian translator had made a mistake and used the word 'canals' which mean 'channels of artificial origin.' Due to this mistranslation, the rumors about the Martian civilization sparked.
The War of the Worlds
At the end of XIX century, this novel by Herbert Wells had brought up the topic of an alien invasion. The War of the Worlds inspired fantasy authors for a hundred of years into the future. Wells himself read too many newspapers. This topic was in the air at that time and the existence of the Martians was taken for granted.
In 1911 “The New York Times” announced that 'Martians Build Two Immense Canals In Two Years.' The society was shocked. It was shocked not with the fact that the newspaper declared the existence of the Martians, but with the fact that the aliens turned out to be far more technically advanced than us. For example, Panama Canal alone had been being built for decades with a lot of difficulties. 
Later on, someone thought – what if the canals were the Martians themselves. The gigantic sentient plants!
The Martian Boom still goes on; the missions have been scheduled for decades into the future. We have not unearthed the mystery of the Red Planet yet. Who knows which way the space exploration would have developed if it were not for that mistake with the Martian canals 140 years ago. For example, Sergei Korolev got into the space theme because he dreamed about the flight to Mars most of all!