Posts Tagged ‘Quotable’

December has a special meaning (kind of) for Eastern Siberia (the region of the middle of Siberia, not the Far East), if not just for Irkutsk. For better or for worse, it has nothing to do with the Mandy Moore song (blog post’s title) or the Disney movie Anastasia about the last Russian tsar, in which the song is featured.

The history. The unsuccessful Decembrist Revolt against the tsar of Dec. 14, 1825 by the so-called “Decembrists” (dekabristy), a relatively small group of high-ranking members of the army, bureaucracy, and society, resulted in a variety of sentences for the group’s punishment. Most were sent to the area around Irkutsk to do hard labor in mines for a number of years, and then were required to settle in Siberia for the rest of their term before they were allowed to return to the European part of the country, excluding Moscow or Petersburg.

The expedition. On Wednesday, our grammar teacher, Irina Melentievna, organized an expedition for us 3 Americans and the German/Austrian/Swiss group of international students (6 of them came) to Irkutsk’s Decembrist Museum, which is the renovated house of the wife of the Decembrist Sergei Grigoriyevich Volkonskii.

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This country seems to have a perhaps larger-than-average volume of it’s defining idioms, riddles, etc. (note: I base my “average” off of my knowledge of English, French, and Russian).

Accordingly, I’ve concluded that this volume comes from the country’s general quotability.

Accordingly, I’ve decided to share a few instances of the basis of my reasoning in this and future installments of what I’ll call “Quotable.” How have I only now been inspired?

“Quotability?” you ask. I reference the Oxford American Dictionary:

adjective. (of a person or remark) suitable for or worth quoting.

So there you have it. I believe Russia to be worth (perhaps not “suitable,” per se. . .) quoting. And it begins.

Literature class. Olga Vladimirovna supposes:
“If I don’t understand something about a Russian, then I am afraid of him.”
We nod our heads in grave agreement, seated before such prudence.

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