KudoZ home » Russian to English » Art/Literary

свадебный генерал

English translation: figurehead

Advertisement

Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs
(or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Russian term or phrase:свадебный генерал
English translation:figurehead
Entered by: GaryG
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

02:23 Dec 26, 2003
Russian to English translations [Non-PRO]
Art/Literary / folks customs
Russian term or phrase: свадебный генерал
OK, I think that I and even most non-Russians in the language pair know what this IS, but is there any equivalent (other than a literal translation, which would require a footnote) in English?
Something better than "VIP wedding guest"?
GaryG
Local time: 05:59
ceremonial bystander
Explanation:
это не мой вариант, это отсюда - http://www.cdi.org/russia/274-15.cfm

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 mins (2003-12-26 02:32:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

figurehead - даже лучше, кажется!
http://www.isn.ethz.ch/researchpub/publihouse/rrr/docs/rrr00...
Selected response from:

Eugene V
Grading comment
I now realize that I should have included the context since there were so
many different answers. Eugene's 2nd answer, however, was intuitive!

То, что в этих академиях состоят
президенты стран СНГ, члены правительства России, депутаты Государственной
Думы, послы, даже генеральные секретари ООН (Кофи Аннан и его
предшественник Бутрос Гали), никого не должно вводить в заблуждение. Это
«свадебные генералы» которые никакого участия в деятельности данных
академий не принимают. Не исключено, что они даже не осознают, куда они
попали.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

Advertisement


Summary of answers provided
4 +4rent-a-celebrity
Сергей Лузан
4 +3ceremonial bystander
Eugene V
5 +1"distinguished" guest for any social gatheringxxxAlex Zelkind
4 +1presiding dignitaryxxxJoeYeckley
4 +1guest of honor (or "guest of honor", depends)gmarina
5 -1Good old boyxxxAlex Zelkind
4(very) SPECIAL guest
Alexander Onishko
3wedding party celebrity / wedding celebrity
Victor Mascov
4 -2Master of CeremoniesxxxOleg Pashuk


  

Answers


5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
свадебный генерал
ceremonial bystander


Explanation:
это не мой вариант, это отсюда - http://www.cdi.org/russia/274-15.cfm

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 mins (2003-12-26 02:32:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

figurehead - даже лучше, кажется!
http://www.isn.ethz.ch/researchpub/publihouse/rrr/docs/rrr00...

Eugene V
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 51
Grading comment
I now realize that I should have included the context since there were so
many different answers. Eugene's 2nd answer, however, was intuitive!

То, что в этих академиях состоят
президенты стран СНГ, члены правительства России, депутаты Государственной
Думы, послы, даже генеральные секретари ООН (Кофи Аннан и его
предшественник Бутрос Гали), никого не должно вводить в заблуждение. Это
«свадебные генералы» которые никакого участия в деятельности данных
академий не принимают. Не исключено, что они даже не осознают, куда они
попали.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxAlex Zelkind
2 hrs

agree  Rusinterp
3 hrs

agree  Alya: "a nominal figurehead" even, maybe
11 hrs
  -> само слово figurehead подразумевает этот смысл. http://lingvo.yandex.ru/cgi-bin/lingvo.pl?text=figure-head
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

25 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): -2
Master of Ceremonies


Explanation:
101 DJs - Master of Ceremonies (MCs)
101 DJs is the number one resource for Master of Ceremonies (MCs) for
Wedding, Party and Event Entertainment. ... Master of Ceremonies. ...
www.101djs.com/master_of_ceremonies.htm

Каледоскоп услуг | Свадебное ...
... Тамада - это свадебный генерал, без него не будет
праздника и веселья, он распорядитель ...
www.kaledoskop.obninsk.ru/wedding

Праздничный бал открывался вальсом. Застолье начинал “свадебный генерал” - самый уважаемый гость. Подавались: 1. Холодные закуски ( обязательно зеленый горошек). 2. Несколько видов рыбы, мясное заливное. особую роль играло заливное из куриных потрошков. 3. Горячее - обязательно куриная лапша, раковый суп, подовые пироги, слоеный паштет. В конце ужина подавали яблочный пирог, иногда со взбитыми сливками.

www.wedding.ru/referat 01.htm


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-12-26 02:51:51 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

свадебный генерал in Russia = Master of Ceremonies in the US, etc.



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-12-26 02:52:39 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Happy Holidays!

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-12-26 17:46:41 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Maybe, you can call such person a \"life of the party\"?

xxxOleg Pashuk
PRO pts in pair: 619

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  xxxAlex Zelkind: Свадебный генерал и церемонимейстер вовсе не одно и тоже
2 hrs

neutral  Rusinterp: historically this is true, but the modern meaning of the word has changed, and you don't mention that
2 hrs
  -> I think the original IS about russian past: "folks customs"suggests that...

disagree  Alexander Onishko: согласен с Zlk
4 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
"distinguished" guest for any social gathering


Explanation:
In Russian term "свадебный генерал" used in highly ironic sense to describe someone with meritorious past, but in the present that person is generaly useless and ignorant, who is invited to social events to give such events "weight", feeling of importance and grandeur.
The term was used by Chekhov and other writers to mock customs of middle class society. To invite a general to a party was considered to be "chic" by the world of petty russian bourgeoisie.


xxxAlex Zelkind
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 103

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Rusinterp
2 hrs
  -> Merci
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
guest of honor (or "guest of honor", depends)


Explanation:
I don't know, found a lot of such examples on the web. Seems to be a strong and well-established tradition in many cultures.

gmarina
Local time: 03:59
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 36

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  xxxAlex Zelkind: На мой взгляд, "guest of honor" звучит без соли и без перца. Почётный гость и свадебный генерал - две различные роли. Свадебный генерал - это шут на торжестве, манекен, какой-нибудь древний старик увешанный орденами
55 mins
  -> I don't see much difference between your "distinguished" guest and "guest of honor" in quotation marks.

agree  Alexander Onishko
4 hrs
  -> Thank you!

agree  David Knowles: Guest of honour (of course)! This avoids any unpleasant connotations such as "rent-a-celeb"!
6 hrs
  -> Thank you!
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
wedding party celebrity / wedding celebrity


Explanation:
:-)))

Victor Mascov
Local time: 12:59
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 44
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
(very) SPECIAL guest


Explanation:
вариант

Alexander Onishko
Local time: 12:59
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian, Native in UkrainianUkrainian
PRO pts in pair: 2355
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
свадебный генерал
presiding dignitary


Explanation:
Not a common term in English, but this is an "ethnic thing." Lots of texts describe various roles as President of the Ceremony, President of the Feast, Ceremonial Dignitary, etc. American culture being a bit divided on the manner in which it conducts ceremonies, you won't find a single solution. But I would suggest this option since it has enough range to cover the range of Russian uses.

A couple examples:

In this example, the author uses the term interchangeably with “distinguished guest.”
Все началось с того, что отец Елены сделал шикарный подарок дочке на день рождения, пригласив Софию Ротару в качестве почетного гостя. За роль свадебного генерала певица получила $ 12 тысяч.
http://www.sobkor.ru/lenta/news-dir/36209.html

Here, the usage clearly has nothing to do with weddings, but my suggested variant still works.
В минувший понедельник объявил о своем уходе с поста лидера думской фракции ОВР Евгений Примаков. Возможно, не желая играть роль свадебного генерала в процессе объединения "Единства" и "Отечества".
http://www.itogi.lenta.ru/profile/


xxxJoeYeckley
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in pair: 971

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxAlex Zelkind
5 mins
  -> Thanks.

disagree  Alexander Onishko: свадебный генерал does not preside he is merely present
35 mins
  -> "presiding" at ceremonies does not necessarily imply an active role (the master of ceremonies does that). The role here is a ceremonial one -- smile, wave, make a little speech perhaps, but, most importantly, add dignity and importance to the event.

agree  Vassyl Trylis: And I'd like better Your "celeb for hire" (why not straightly - "hired celebrity"?).
3 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): -1
Good old boy


Explanation:
It's somewhat vulgar but very close to the russian meaning

xxxAlex Zelkind
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 103

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Alexander Onishko: has absolutely NOTHING to do with свадебный генерал :)
16 mins
  -> :)
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
rent-a-celebrity


Explanation:
or "rent-a-party celebrity"/"rent-a-case celebrity"/ "rent-a-special-case celebrity"/"rent-a-special-occasion celebrity". There was such a movie "Rent-a-Cop" AFAIK. Hope it conveys the meaning. Good luck & Merry Xmas, GaryG!

Сергей Лузан
Russian Federation
Local time: 13:59
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 1276

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxAlex Zelkind: Bravo! Celebrity for rent ^)
16 mins
  -> Thank you, Zlk! At the wedding it's namely "rent-a-celebrity". Merry Xmas!

neutral  xxxJoeYeckley: I have reservations about its accuracy as a translation, but I certainly like the ring of "Celeb for hire."
1 hr
  -> Thank you, Joseph Bayerl! Your links helped me to give my version anyway. I guess there are many movie stars in US & Europe that are "Celebrities for hire" & earn so between movies. In some cases your version could be 100 % correct. Merry Xmas!

agree  Igor Deschenko
2 hrs
  -> Thank you, Igor Deschenko!

agree  gmarina
7 hrs

agree  Mark Vaintroub
1 day 15 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


KudoZ™ translation help
The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.



See also:



Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search