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Russian Language & Literature *: Dictionaries

This guide to select sources is useful primarily for graduate and undergraduate students who are studying Russian or Soviet literature and linguistics.

Historic Language Dictionaries

This list includes some noted historic Russian language dictionaries.  To find additional dictionaries, search the HOMER catalog.

Akademiia nauk SSSR. Institut russkogo iazyka. Slovar' sovremennogo russkogo literaturnogo iazyka. 17 vols. Moskva: Izdatel'stvo Akademii nauk SSSR, 1950-65. LOCATION: Reference Center PG2625.A533.  Referred to a the Bol'shoi akademicheskii slovar' this is the major dictionary for Modern Standard Russian from Pushkin's time onward.  An updated edition in 20 volumes is in progress (see entry under Gorbachevich in this bibliography).  

Dal', V. I. Tolkovyi slovar' zhivogo velikorusskogo iazyka. 3rd ed. Revised by J. A. Baudouin de Courtenay. 4 vols. St. Petersburg: Izdatel'stvo T-va M. O. Wol'f, 1912-14.  LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2625.D318  Indispensable for pre-1917 Standard Russian and for dialect, slang, proverbs and sayings.  Reprinted in 1955, Doheny Stacks PG2625.D33 1955.

Evgen'eva, Anastasiia Petrovna (ed) Slovar' sinonimov russkogo iazyka. 2 vols. Leningrad: Nauka, 1970. (Akademiia nauk SSSR. Institut russkogo iazyka.  An updated edition appeared in 2001, also edited by Evgen'eva.  LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2591.S6; PG2591.S56 2001

Fasmer [Vasmer], Maks. Etimologicheskii slovar' russkogo iazyka. 4 vols. Moscow: Progress, 1986. LOCATION: Doheny Reference PG2580.V317 1986.  This etymological authority includes cognates from archaic vocabulary, Old Church Slavic and Russian Church slavic forms, as well as regionalisms.  An earlier edition published in 1964 is in the Doheny Stacks, PG2580.V316.  Doheny also houses the German language edition, PG2580.V3.

Filin, F. P. Slovar' russkikh narodnykh govorov. 33 vols. Moskva: Akademiia nauk SSSR. Institut russkogo iazyka. Slovarnyi sektor, 1965. LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2735.A48.  This is a work on the special lexicon of Russian dialectics of the 19th and 20th centuries.  Includes a 145-page bibliography of source materials.

Flegon, A. Za predelami russkikh slovarei. London: Flegon, 1973. LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2691.F4 1973. A noted dictionary of slang and obscenities. 

Galler, M., and H. E. Marquess. Soviet prison camp speech: A survivor's glossary. Hayward: Soviet Studies, 1977. LOCATION: Doheny Stack PG2691.G3 1977. Over 1100 entries from prison camp language.  The introduction outlines the development of prison camp speech.  A supplement was published in 1977, Doheny Stacks PG2691.G3 1977.

Gorbachevich, Kirill Sergeevich.  Slovar' sovremennogo russkogo literaturnogo iazyka v 20 tomakh.  Moskva: Russkii iazyk, 1991-.  Six volumes are available currently.  This is supposed to be an update on the 17 volume dictionary published in the 1960s.  LOCATION: Doheny Reference PG2625.A533 1991.

Gribble, C. E. Slovarik russkogo iazyka 18-go veka. Cambridge: Slavica Pubs., Inc., 1976. LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2625.G7. Only words that do not appear in Modern Standard Russian are treated in this differential dictionary of the 18th century.  It does not pretend to be comprehensive; rather, it aims to be strictly practical.

Grot, I. A., A. A. Shakhmatov, and V. M. Istrin, eds. Slovar' russkogo iazyka. 1891-1935. 16 vols. Reprint. London: Flegon Press, 1984.LOCATION: Doheny Reference PG2625.S55 1984.  This dictionary goes through the letter "O"; it was never printed thereafter.

Nikitina, T. G. Tolkovyi slovar’ molodezhnogo slenga. Moscow: Astrel’, 2003. LOCATION: Doheny Reference PG2752.N56 2003

Sreznevskii, I. I. Materialy dlia slovaria drevne-russkogo iazyka po pis'mennym pamiatnikam. 3 vols. and supplement. St. Petersburg: Imp. Akademiia nauk, 1893-1912.  LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2667.S7.  This dictionary treats Russian Church Slavic terms taken from 11th to 15th century sources.

Vasmer [Fasmer], Max.  Russisches etymologisches Worterbuch.  Heidelberg: C. Winter, 1953.  LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2580.V3.  The Doheny Reference collection has a 1986 Russian edition, PG2580.V3.

Zemtsov, I. Sovetskii politicheskii iazyk . London: Overseas Publications, 1985. LOCATION: Doheny Stacks PG2611.Z42 1985.  Intended as a "guide" to Soviet culture, this dictionary analyzes the ideological content of terms in their application to Soviet life.

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