Good Reason

It's okay to be wrong. It's not okay to stay wrong.

Cyrillic meets Roman

It’s funny when people try to use Cyrillic letters as Roman ones. I understand why they do it — for English speakers, Russian has acquired connotations of militarism and toughness. And people have been tossing in the odd Cyrillic character for a long time.

(cue music)

But when you actually know how to read Cyrillic script, it’s a little jarring. Here’s a movie poster that sidled up next to me at a traffic light this morning.

More like ‘the dorkest hour’, amirite?

See, the Д that they have standing in for an ‘A’ is actually a /d/ sound, and the Я is a vowel that sounds like ‘ya’. Also, that Ц covering for the ‘U’ is the sound of /ts/ in ‘tsar’.

So really, the movie’s title should be pronounced ‘The Ddyakest Hotsr’. Or ‘Notsr’ if the ‘H’ has an /n/ sound, as Cyrillic Н does.

But let’s not be pedantic. We’re stuck with it now. We’ll be seeing posters, ads, and maybe even action figures in Toys ‘Ya’ Us.


  1. This is a huge pet peeve of mine! I took Russian in high school.

  2. That's interesting. I've been noticing it for almost 30 years with kanji/hanzi, but I didn't know people do it with Cyrillic.

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