The Read Russia! Anthology:

Read Russia! An Anthology of New Voices (2012) is ready for your immediate PDF download and reading pleasure!
Read Russia! is filled to the digital brim with English-language translations of contemporary Russian fiction and nonfiction, 445 pages of literary feats from thirty Russian writers who have conquered book award juries and the hearts and minds of millions of Russian readers.

I don’t know what their business model is, but if they can give away a fat anthology of translations, who am I to ask questions? If you have any interest in contemporary Russian literature, you’ll want to check this out.


  1. I don’t know what their business model is
    It’s patronage. Sometimes that means propaganda, too; I’m not fit to judge whether or not in this case.

  2. Jeffry House says

    Your link connects also to Russian-poetry with translations to English in the opposite column. For those like me with mediocre Russian, the site is useful:
    The poems, Russian and translated , often come with audio. If you are like me, and don’t know that xmelь means “hops” and хрень means “horseradish”, this kind of site can provide easy

  3. Victor Sonkin says

    “Хрень” means something completely different 🙂 Horseradish is хрен, without the ь.

  4. yeah, I second, xren’ means rubbish, tosh, bullshit, with allusions to the c* word.

  5. Ha! If you look in the bottom left corner of the website, it says, deliberately I think, ‘socialist media’, sted of ‘social media/networks’.

  6. David Marjanović says

    Horseradish is хрен

    Austrian German Kren. Elsewhere Meerrettich “sea radish”, reanalysis of *Mährrettich “mare radish”. (Well, Mähre survives only as a dysphemism for “horse”, “mare” is Stute…)

  7. i always wondered what xrych means, google translate gives me in english gink which is not helpful cz i don’t know what that means too and it in return gives me in russian chudila, which really didnt match what i was imagining, but it must be means chudila then, my image was that of an old owl

  8. Jeffry House says

    As I said, my Russian is mediocre! Thanks everyone!

  9. If you click on ‘gink’ for alternative translations, Google Translate gives ‘bastard’ and ‘grumbler’.

  10. a, grumbler maybe is the closest matching word then

  11. Mähre survives only as a dysphemism for “horse”
    Mähre can be dysphemistic, but it is also a non-metaphorical term for an old clapped-out horse. That’s Eine Mähre, by the way. Ein Mähre is someone who hails from Mähren.
    Austrian German Kren. Elsewhere Meerrettich “sea radish”, reanalysis of *Mährrettich “mare radish”.
    Neither Duden nor Grimm gives comfort to the notion that the Meer- bit has anything to do with horses. The “comes from overseas” interpretation is said to be popular etymology.
    Duden claims that the OHG and MHG predecessors of Meerrettich “probably meant ‘comparatively large Rettich‘”. I’m not sure what to make of that, since horseradish is a root that is not particularly big. Maybe the Rettich being referred to is what is now (outside of Southern Germany and points east) called Radieschen = those little red radishes.

  12. I mean reddishes, of course.

  13. Horse- in English words may mean ‘large’, but may also mean ‘coarse, unrefined’, and that’s the sense that dominates in horseradish, as in horse chestnut, horse-faced, and also in the one-off horse joke ‘vulgar joke’ (1865). The same motif is operating in various common names for animals, as horse ant, horse bee, horse conch, horse finch, horse lark, horse mussel, horse sponge; and for plants, as horse balm, horse bean, horse cress, horse cucumber, horse daisy, horse mushroom, horse parsley, horse sorrel.

  14. mm, in Russia, we have конский щавель (or лошадиный щавель) literally horse sorrel (Rumex confertus Willd) which is a kind of dockweed.

  15. David Marjanović says

    Duden claims that the OHG and MHG predecessors of Meerrettich “probably meant ‘comparatively large Rettich‘”.

    Huh. Interesting.
    Mehr Rettich? :-þ

  16. Yeah, that was also my reaction:

    Meer|ret|tich, der; -s, -e [mhd. merrettich, ahd. mer(i)ratich, eigtl. wohl = größerer Rettich (zu mehr), später volksetym. umgedeutet zu: Rettich, der über das Meer zu uns gebracht worden ist]

    As in Meerwertsteuer, Meerschweinchen, …

  17. Horseradish is хрен
    Austrian German Kren
    Gernot Katzer gives two dozen or more names for horseradish, many similar to the examples above. A Wurzel became a Wanderwort.

  18. David Marjanović says

    A Wurzel became a Wanderwort.


  19. Bill Boyd says

    Guess I’m either too dense to find any freebie Russian master works or the essence of the website has changed. The idea, though is a fine one.

  20. Yup, looks like the freebie is gone. Sic transit!

  21. Looks like the anthology is still available for download here.

  22. Thanks! I swapped that link in for the one in the original post.

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