Project Prochnost: Week 14

My stupid fever relapsed earlier this week, so this week was largely devoted to catching up with my Duolingo. I did some speaking exercises on phrases, but the key to this is the word ‘some’.

One of all the new Russian words I learnt the past week took my breath away. It is Тоска, pronounced as ‘toska’ and on the surface, it means sadness or melancholia. However, it has shades. Let the beautiful words of Vladimir Nabokov explain what I mean:

‘No single word in English renders all the shades of ‘toska’. At its deepest and most painful, it is a sensation of great spiritual anguish, often without any specific cause. At less morbid levels it is a dull ache of the soul, a longing with nothing to long for, a sick pining, a vague restlessness, mental throes, yearning. In particular cases it may be the desire for somebody of something specific, nostalgia, love-sickness. At the lowest level it grades into ennui, boredom.’

For me, sadness just meant sadness and I never thought that it can ever be possible to attach the reason behind it inside the word itself. It is ironic that the word for all shades of sadness is bringing me such joy but it is. Maybe it is the writer inside me trying to read too much between the lines but you know what, not all sadnesses are equal. Okay, I will stop now 😀

I am back home and I hope to post more regularly now. Till then, пока пока 🙂

26 thoughts on “Project Prochnost: Week 14

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  1. This post reminds me of the character ‘Sadness’ from the animated movie ‘Inside Out’. I don’t know if you have seen that movie or not but in the end they show the importance of sadness in an amazing way. That it’s more than just a feeling of pain.
    Great post as usual.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Glad you are home but no so good that you have had a relapse of your fever. I expect it is probably the toska in Russian music which makes the music so appealing to me, although,until your post, I had no idea the word existed.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. It’s a great gift, being able to learn new languages as an adult. Kids, they say pick up new languages easily if it’s been spoken around them. I have long since the desire to learn Persian language but am held back by the fear that it would be too much to take on ! Maybe one of these days, I will attempt it.

        Liked by 1 person

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