Take another quiz >

English Words of Russian Origin

These words came to us from Russian. Guess what they are - based on the definition and starting letter.
Quiz by Quizmaster
Rate:
First submittedMarch 12, 2013
Last updatedJune 21, 2015
Times taken27,456
Rating3.79
4:00
Enter word here:
0
 / 20 guessed
The quiz is paused. You have remaining.
Scoring
You scored / = %
This beats or equals % of test takers also scored 100%
The average score is
Your high score is
Your fastest time is
Keep scrolling down for answers and more stats ...
Definition
 
Word
Russian emperor
T
Tsar
Russian emperor (alt. spelling)
C
Czar
Clear, distilled alchohol
V
Vodka
Old woman
B
Babushka
Warm jacket with hood
P
Parka
Beet soup
B
Borscht
The vast, Eurasian grasslands
S
Steppe
Type of hat worn by Indiana Jones
F
Fedora
Caviar-bearing sturgeon
B
Beluga
Anti-Jewish riot
P
Pogrom
Definition
 
Word
Russian wolfhound
B
Borzoi
Russian astronaut
C
Cosmonaut
Russian villa
D
Dacha
Russian national parliament
D
Duma
Prison camp
G
Gulag
Extinct woolly elephant
M
Mammoth
Russian for no
N
Nyet
Metal urn for making tea
S
Samovar
Subarctic forest zone
T
Taiga
Carriage drawn by three horses
T
Troika
+1
level 77
Apr 12, 2013
couldn't figure out how to spell borsch..
+2
level 72
Apr 12, 2013
Couldn't figure out to spell half of these, knew the words though. Quite difficult for non-English speakers
+1
level 77
Sep 12, 2015
I got it this time.
+1
level 70
Sep 14, 2015
What if you speak Russian?
+3
level 50
Sep 14, 2015
I speak Russian, spelling some of this was difficult, I couldn't figure out what the letters morphed into when the word was anglicized.
+2
level 77
Oct 31, 2017
This time I was having trouble spelling dascha, dacia, whatever..
+1
level 59
Apr 13, 2013
'Borsch' should also be accepted for 'Borscht' because in some languages it's called something similar to 'borsh' e.g. borš/borsh in Estonian. Also the T in the letter usually transliterated as 'shch' is rarely pronounced in Russian. In Russian it's usually pronounced as a long 'sh'. Nice quiz though, never knew words like Steppe or Fedora come from Russian.
+1
level 40
Apr 14, 2013
Here here Sulps. I kept trying 'borsch' too. That's how it's spelled in some Eastern European countries I've been to anyway.
+2
level 43
May 18, 2014
However, the correct answer in this quiz is the word as spelled in English, as an accepted loanword of Russian origin. Not a random Latin-alphabet approximation of the original Russian sound as used in any number of languages.
+2
level 72
Jun 9, 2014
The actual word in Russian - which is spelled Борщ - converts into the English alphabet as borshch. Wikipedia lists the following possible spellings: "Borscht (also borsch, bortsch, borstch, borsh, borshch)".
+1
level 72
Jul 27, 2018
Why not use a real source and not one written and overwritten hundreds or thousands of times per article by anyone with a pulse and an internet connection?
+1
level ∞
Jun 21, 2015
Added some more accepted spellings for that one.
+3
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
fedora was a surprise to me too. sounds like coming from a romance language (like italian)
+1
level 70
Apr 14, 2013
2.31 left. I expected it to be harder. Giving the first letter was soooo helpful. Fun quiz. thanks.
+3
level 83
May 15, 2013
Finally, a use for the word troika, which I've known for almost 15 years, and never had occasion to say or write. I feel vindicated now.
+1
level 49
Aug 22, 2013
As far as I know "pogrom" comes from polish...and, if you are flexible with "borscht" spelling (the option you choose comes via german language, the "sch" is not used in slavic languages, for example in polish its called "barszcz") you should thing about accepting "babooshka" ;)
+1
level 50
Sep 14, 2015
pogram is the noun form of gromit' with a prefix of po added, to form the perfective aspect verb of pogromit', meaning to raid, completely Russian.
+1
level 77
Jun 28, 2018
Wallace named his dog after anti-Jewish rioting?
+1
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
grom means growl in dutch so I allways think of growling, grumbling when hearing grommit.
+1
level 43
Aug 25, 2013
Damn it. Samovar was on the tip of my tongue. I got 14 out of 20 (wouild've been 15 if not for samovar)
+1
level 67
Apr 24, 2014
The Gulag was acutally the agency that administered Soviet work and re-education camps. It's an acronym for "Glavnoye upravleniye lagerey", which means, "main camp administration". The clue should probably say "Prison camp system"
+1
level 77
May 7, 2014
I lived in Russia for three years and breezed through this... except for that darn wolfhound. I don't know that I've ever heard that in Russian or English.
+1
level 55
Apr 27, 2015
I've heard of it only because it was on my sister's spelling bee list words that I quizzed her on.
+1
level 67
Aug 29, 2017
Common name in dogs lists, and a great looking dog.
+1
level 79
Sep 5, 2018
I completely agree that they are great looking. The one that I had (Natasha - the "War and Peace" one not the "Rocky and Bullwinkle" one) was just as smart and gentle as she was beautiful, but a little on the hard headed side and sometimes had an "I vant to be let alone" attitude. Before anyone comments, I know Garbo was Swedish not Russian.
+3
level 43
Jun 3, 2014
Can you accept Niet? Transliteration is tricky business anyway
+2
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
I really thought it was njet. Tried it like 10 times haha. I wonder why in english a Y in used instead of a j (that is how it is tranliterated here)
+2
level 66
Jun 7, 2014
Parka is not of Russian, but of Nenets origin, although it may have entered the English language through Russian.
+3
level 73
Sep 2, 2014
Is Nyet actually used by any language OTHER than Russian?
+2
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
njet
+2
level 79
Sep 12, 2015
"Parka" isn't Russian, it's a Nenets word. The Nenets language is in no way related to Russian.
+2
level 62
Sep 12, 2015
Russian borrowed it from Nenets. It entered English through Russian. A number of words on this are similar.
+1
level 58
Sep 12, 2015
damn i put parkER
+1
level 64
Oct 31, 2017
LOOOL
+1
level 77
Sep 12, 2015
Could you accept barzoi, please?
+1
level 47
Sep 12, 2015
Borsch is more Ukrainian than Russian. The more typically Russian is Schi: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shchi
+1
level 58
Sep 12, 2015
I never knew Mammoth came from the Russian. For some reason English words for big tend to come from something that was big. Scrap that, when English words for big come from something that was big, that thing was invariably some kind of elephant. viz, Jumbo, Mammoth.
+1
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
besides ultra mega and giga
+2
level 46
Sep 14, 2015
Nice quiz. Why not Tundra for Tiaga? Is Tundra not Russian? Also, there is more than one way to spell Tsar, Tzar is also acceptable in English (or at least Scrabble!)
+1
level 76
Sep 14, 2015
Tundra is apparently from Lappish.
+1
level 62
Sep 16, 2015
It's Sami.
+1
level 76
Oct 23, 2017
^ Wikipedia says "Kildin Sami, also known as Lappish"
+2
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
tundra IS from russian (though they might have gotten it from sami), but the difference is, tundra is without trees and taiga is wtih trees. And since the clue mentions forest..
+1
level 47
Dec 20, 2015
Indiana Jones wears an akubra
+2
level 67
Oct 3, 2016
The Fedora worn by Indiana Jones was made by Herbert Johnson Hat Company of Saville Row, London, a high-end hatter to the Royal family.
+1
level 58
Feb 18, 2016
I didn't realise mammoth was originally Russian.
+2
level 69
May 29, 2016
Really need add more variants of 'nyet' - especially given the most direct transliteration 'net', which doesn't work here. Of course I was kicking myself afterwards that I didn't even try 'nyet' (I also tried 'niet). Nonetheless, at very least 'net' should work. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D0%BD%D0%B5%D1%82#Russian
+2
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
yup, tried njet net and niet (but not nyet..)
+1
level 61
May 25, 2019
And again... tried ever variation you can think of, several times... nyet doesnt even look to me as it would be pronounced (like) njet. It looks like knee-add
+1
level 47
Oct 3, 2016
Isn't sevruga and osetra sturgeon caviar as well?
+1
level 67
Aug 29, 2017
How is nyet an "English Word of Russian Origin"?
+1
level 67
Oct 13, 2017
Fair question, not known in Oxford English Dictionary.
+1
level 61
May 25, 2019
Good point! Maybe like loco,, i dont feel like that word is used like a loanword, it is used in the usa, but it keeps it full ehm... damn hard to explain, it stays as spanish/mexican as it originally was.
+1
level 24
Feb 19, 2018
Borscht lol
+1
level 24
Feb 19, 2018
Eagles don't fly with Pigeons
+1
level 27
Oct 27, 2018
Niet should be an accepted spelling.
+1
level 61
Jan 15, 2019
I thought tundra for taiga. I looked it up and now know the difference. Though for me personally tundra is much more know ( i only MIGHT ve heard from taiga, but mainly think so because I remember coming across the similar problem before, when i thought it was tundra but wasnt)

of the other 8 I got wrong i only had heard of parka. (I tried pullover and poncho haha though didnt expect it to be right)

+1
level 71
Apr 21, 2019
Would 'pullova' work?
+1
level 77
May 27, 2019
tundra produces blue and white mana. Taiga produces green and red. Totally different.
+1
level 60
Apr 5, 2019
Please accept "niet" for "nyet". The transcription of Cyrillic letters into the Latin alphabet is somewhat subjective, and either of these could be correct
+1
level 63
May 27, 2019
I disagree with using "villa" for dacha, unless it is for ironic reasons. Dacha is typically inexpensive house, often unsuitable for living during winter, and mostly maintained for a small plot of garden. Perhaps "summer house" would be more accurate?
+1
level 69
Jul 29, 2019
Agreed, a dacha is quite the opposite of a villa. Unless you're talking about the dacha of the Secretary General and Chairman of the Supreme Soviet, of course. Or the tsar's. Or Putin's.
+1
level 44
May 28, 2019
Borzoi? Who says that...ever?!