All Slavic Languages: raz- as a prefix


Senior Member
Belgium, Dutch
Is it correct that raz- is a common Slavic prefix? Does it mean something like 'from', or 'out of'?

- I just bumped into /razdora/. Can you analyse that into two parts?
- And if I am not mistaken, there is also a verb like explaining that begins with /raz/ (and the second part being something like sunlight, or ...). Is that correct?
  • ajitam

    New Member
    Yes, it's, a common and productive prefix. raz- forms words where the meaning amounts to taking something apart, splitting, cutting, and or doing some similar action (but also spreading something, etc). In SC, the prefix can also be found in words beginning with ras- (z > s), e.g.

    raspasti - to fall apart (noun raspad)
    raspetljati - to unravel, to untie

    I don't know about the word razdora but there's razdor in SC and its meaning is split, division, dispute. This comes from razderati, raz- + derati with derati meaning to tear.

    As for the last part, maybe rasvijetliti? (to light up, to cast light on, to clear up)


    Serbia - Serbian
    Corresponds well to german prefix zer-

    zerfallen - raspasti se
    zerstören - razoriti
    zerbrechen - razbiti

    Enquiring Mind

    Senior Member
    English - the Queen's
    Hi ThomasK.
    Does it mean something like 'from', or 'out of'?
    In Czech, the verbal prefix "roz(e)" doesn't express "out of" or "from", but it conveys several different meanings, as shown here (
    PREFIX roz
    a) movement away, in different directions; b) dividing or breaking up; c) reversal or undoing (returning to a previous state); d) beginning of an action; e) reaching full measure.
    1. Papír roztrhal na kousky. [trhat] He tore the paper into pieces (b); 2. Obálka se rozlepila. [lepit] The envelope came unstuck (c); 3. Během přednášky se profesor rozmluvil. [mluvit] In the lecture the professor really got into his stride (e); 4. Listonoš už roznesl všechny dopisy. [nést] The postman has delivered all his letters (a/e); 5. Lidé se rozešli po svém. [jít] People went their own ways (a); 6. Někdo tu houbu rozšlápl. [šlapat/šlápnout] Someone has trampled the mushroom to pieces (b); 7. Vrchní vrstva půdy už rozmrzla. [mrznout] The top layer of earth has already thawed out (e); 8. Pořádně se rozpršelo. [pršet] The rain has started coming down heavily (d); 9. Oheň se ještě úplně nerozhořel. [hořet] The fire hasn't completely got going yet (e); 10. Papíry rozházel po místnosti. [hodit] He was throwing papers round the room (a); 11. Nemůžete rozsvítit? [svítit] Can you put/turn/switch the lights on? (d).
    Původně chtěl se svými společníky jít normální cestou, pak se ale rozmyslel. He originally intended to go the normal way with the rest of his group, but then changed his mind (c); děkujeme za dopis, moc nás rozesmál a udělal velkou radost. Thanks for your letter which really got us laughing and made us very happy (d); Syn zatím žádné boty nemá, ale on se ještě nerozchodil, je mu 14 měsíců. My son hasn't got any shoes yet because he isn't really walking all that much, he's 14 months old (e); Je nutné nové boty postupně rozchodit. You need to gradually wear in new shoes (d); Dvě pětisetové bitvy Federera nerozhodí. Jsem teď rozehraný, řekl. Two five-set battles won't upset Federer. (c) "I've got into [AmE hit] my stride now," he said. (e)

    The Russian verbal prefix раз/рас conveys several of these meanings too. You can read something about it here: The meaning of verbs with prefix “раз-\рас-” and postfix “-ся” (
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    Senior Member
    In the Western Slavic languages (Polish, Czech, Slovak) this prefix has the form roz-.
    Technically in the East Slavic languages as well, but akanye combined with the Church Slavonic written tradition turn it into raz- (or ras-) most of the time for Russian and Belarusian. Still cf. Rus. ро́звальни, ро́знь, ро́зница, ро́зыгрыш, ро́спуск etc.
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