Monday, December 03, 2012

ZIL. (A Dictionary of Russian Words in English)

A presidential ZIL.

Regular readers of Tetradki know that I am compiling a dictionary of Russian words in English. I have nearly a thousand entries now.

One of them is ZIL, an acronym which stands for Zavod Imeni Likhacheva — Likhachev Works.

ZIL is the brand name for, among other things, the armoured limos reserved for members of the Politbureau (another entry).

The snowstorm that had brought Moscow and its suburbs to a standstill on Friday made some compare Moscow traffic conditions — and conventions — to those in the West.

Here's a quote from the BBC reportage by Daniel Sandford, unrelated to the snowstorm:

"The special Games Lanes for Olympic athletes and officials, which have given rise to jams and infuriated some drivers in London, have been branded "Zil lanes". The nickname comes from the infamous traffic lanes in Moscow reserved for the most senior officials of the Soviet Union travelling in their black Zil limousines."

Photo from Wikimedia, here.

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