Раз, два, три!

Discussion in 'Русский (Russian)' started by paradoxa4, Jul 12, 2013.

  1. paradoxa4

    paradoxa4 Senior Member

    Venezuelan Spanish
    Hello. I have listened to a song called "Moscow" from Rammstein and T.A.T.U, the chorus is sung in Russian and it says:

    Раз, два, три!
    Пионеры там идут
    песни Ленину поют

    Why did they use Раз, два, три instead of один? I have to make clear that the context is about the Soviet Union.

    The translation is supposed to be "one, two three", but I don't know if that Раз was a communist way to call people to work faster or it has to do with the Stalingrad battle. I am just guessing.

    Maybe it is just a word invented by T.A.T.U. Well, I hope that someone can explain it to me.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Ёж! Senior Member

    This is very ordinary counting. "One" is "один" when used as an adjective, but "раз" in counting.

    By the way: amused at how often the word 'communist' is misused and/or overused outside Russia...
  3. YMOPA

    YMOPA Senior Member

    Repub de Tejas
    That's a shortcut for: "Один Раз, Два раза, Три раза", meaning "Единожды, дважды, трижды" - "Once, twice, thrice" or "One time, two times, three times".

    In that rhyme, for the "once", "один" is dropped, for "twice and thrice", "раз" is dropped.

    That's how you get "Один Раз, Два Раза, Три раза" = "Раз, Два, Три"

    Another gross simplification is that it should really be "Первый раз, второй раз, третий раз" - "First, second, third". But that doesn't rhyme well, it does not give you energizing beat (rhythm), hence no ordinal numerals.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2013
  4. paradoxa4

    paradoxa4 Senior Member

    Venezuelan Spanish
    Perfectly understood. Thanks a lot :)
  5. Ёж! Senior Member

    In fact, both "первый, второй, третий, четвёртый, пятый" and "один, два, три, четыре, пять" are sometimes used for counting as well: the second is used more often than the first, and, I'd say, probably as often as "один, два, три, четыре, пять".

    It is also worth noting that those words are not understood as shortcuts in speech. And, of course, the line does not mean 'once, twice, thrice'.
  6. bibax Senior Member

    Czech (Prague)
    Razъ is a Protoslavic word that meant "stroke". It is used similarly like "times" in English:  три раза = three times (orig. "three strokes"). In the instrumental case, разом means "at a stroke" (at once).

    Раз is a one-syllable word, shorter than один, so it is used in marching (Раз-два, раз-два – армия идёт "the army is marching",  Вперёд шагает гвардия, а командир поёт!), exercising (raz, dva, tři, raz, dva, tři, we use it in Czech, too), etc.
  7. Ёж! Senior Member

    Indeed. Also, when counting things. The word is not limited to military contexts, this is a plain and common word.
  8. Real_ Member

    Do not pay so much attention.
    This is like germans:
    ein, zwei - policai,
    drei, fier - brigadir.

    This is the same as aqi:
    Como si fuera esta noche la ultima vez.

    Understood? While counting. (but es not in the case of example, aunque lo puede estar).
    (do not be encucharao. :). Do not afraid. Nobody understand - it is not in any (ANY) dictionary).
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 17, 2013

Share This Page