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1. Explanation of tabs


This button will bring the user to a list of over 2200 constructions that they can scroll through. On this page the user can search for any string that is part of the name of a construction and get the construction(s) that match the string. For each construction we list the ID Number, the Name and the Illustration, and the user clicks to get the whole entry for the construction. Some of the numbers of constructions are not consecutive. This is not an error. This is the result of a long process of collecting constructions and removing duplicates.

NB! It may take a few seconds for the constructions to load on the website. If you are experiencing delays, you might try opening the webpage on a different browser, since some browsers work faster than others.

Daily Dose

On this page the user can choose their proficiency level from a menu and then will receive five constructions chosen at random from their proficiency level. Like on Browse, the user sees just the Name and Illustration in this list and then clicks to get the full construction entry.

On this page the user can filter constructions according to various parameters that can be combined (multiple filters on the same search).

Instructions (English)

This page contains instructions for users in English.

Instructions (Russian)

This page contains instructions for users in Russian.


On this page the user can find information about the project and the team.

2. Abbreviations and symbols

Each construction is represented by its name and a short illustration: e.g. найти-Pst NP-Acc! Нашли развлечение! (‘What a bad way to amuse yourself! [lit. found amusement]’). The name of a construction is a short morphosyntactic formula that usually includes fixed lexical parts (called the anchor) as well as grammatical slots indicated by means of common abbreviations like NP, VP, etc. When necessary, we specify morphological characteristics of the fixed lexeme or a slot, where we use abbreviations according the Leipzig Glossing rules.

1First person
2Second person
3Third person
()Optional element
/Alternative elements
~Reduplication (repetition of the same word or morpheme)
BareBare stem of a verb (e.g. прыг, шлеп, скок)
CconjCoordinating conjunction
CvbConverb (verbal adverb)
Gen2"Second" genitive (Partitive genitive)
N-Non- (e.g. Nsg=nonsingular, Npst=Nonpast)
NounBare noun (often appears in reduplicative constructions)
NPNoun phrase
NumCollCollective numeral (e.g. двое, трое)
NumCrdCardinal numeral (e.g. один, два)
NumOrdOrdinal numeral (e.g. первый, второй)
PPPrepositional phrase
PronDemDemonstrative pronoun (e.g. это, то)
PronIntInterrogative / relative pronoun (e.g. кто, что, какой, который, каков, чей, когда, где, куда)
PronPersPersonal pronoun (e.g. я, мы, ты, вы, он, она, оно, они)
PronPossPossessive pronoun (e.g. мой, твой, наш, его, ее, их)
PtcpActActive participle
PtcpPassPassive participle
SconjSubordinating conjunction
ShortShort form
VerbBare verb (often in constructions with verbal prefixes)
VPVerb phrase
XPAny phrasal unit (a slot that can be NP or VP or AP or PP)

3. Explanation of conventions

Each slot and morphological specifications are verified by data from the Russian National Corpus, and supplemented by internet searches where data is sparse.

In representing the syntactic structure of constructions, we adopt the following strategies.

  1. If a construction contains a noun phrase (NP) that can be used not only in the predicative function marked with the nominative case but also in other roles (e.g. object, instrument, etc.) encoded with oblique cases, we do not specify the case in the construction name: e.g. NP на нуле [lit. NP on zero], as in Иммунитет на нуле ‘Immunity is at the zero level’ vs. Выписали пациента с иммунитетом на нуле ‘They released a patient with immunity at the zero level’.

  2. If a construction contains a noun phrase (NP) that is only used in the predicative function, we indicate its form as the default NP-Nom (= a noun phrase with the head noun in the Nominative case), as it appears with the present tense copula: e.g. NP-Nom Cop NP-Nom VP-Inf (as in Он мастер готовить ‘He is good at cooking [lit. expert cook]’).

  3. We assume that the Instrumental case marking of the predicative NP that may appear with the past and/or future tense copula is a general rule of Russian grammar and this is mentioned in the commentary field on each entry and illustrated in examples: e.g. Он был мастером готовить ‘He was good at cooking [lit. expert cook]’.

  4. We include the copula in the name of a construction only if the copula verb can be used in this construction not only in the present tense but also in other tense(s): e.g. NP-Nom Cop не очень, as in Для стоянки место не очень (Past: было не очень; Future: будет не очень).

  5. Some constructions contain reduplicated nouns rather than NPs, and we represent this accordingly: e.g. NP-Nom Cop всем Noun-Dat.Pl ~Noun-Nom (as in Всем борщам борщ! ‘The best vegetable soup of all [lit. to all soups soup]’).

  6. In verb argument constructions that contain a specific verb lexeme (the anchor verb) and slots for the verb’s arguments, we specify the subject slot even if it has a default nominative case marking: e.g. NP-Nom знать толк в NP-Loc (as in Он знает толк в настольных играх ‘He is an expert in board-games [lit. He knows sense in board-games]’). Normally, the anchor verb is given in the infinitive to represent any inflectional form. For example, in the construction NP-Nom знать толк в NP-Loc, the infinitive of the anchor verb знать ‘know’ indicates that this verb can be used in this construction in other forms too.

  7. If the anchor verb can be used in a construction only in a specific grammatical form, the construction name indicates this specific form (or forms, if there are very few options): e.g. с PronPers-Gen хватит/хватило (NP-Gen), as in С меня хватит ‘I’m fed up [lit. from me enough]’.

  8. If the use of the anchor verb in the construction is restricted to a certain sub-paradigm, this is indicated accordingly. For example, in the construction найти-Pst NP-Acc! (as in Нашли развлечение! ‘What a bad way to amuse yourself! [lit. found amusement]’), the anchor verb найти ‘find’ can appear only in the past tense.

  9. For constructions that contain a VP, we do not include the subject slot NP-Nom in the name of the construction, because the case marking of the arguments (including the logical subject) depends on specific verb lexemes: compare вечно VP in Вечно мне не везет ‘I am always short on luck [lit. eternally to me not catch-luck]’ (where the logical subject has an experiencer role and is marked with the dative case) vs. Вечно Петр опаздывает ‘Peter is always late [lit. eternally Peter is late]’ (where the logical subject has the agent role and is encoded with the nominative case).

  10. We do not include morphophonological variants of prepositions (like с and со) in the name of a construction. Only the default allomorph is represented: e.g. VP с NP-Gen, as in Она с досады топнула ногой.

4. Explanation of terms

4.1. Stylistic terms (Usage labels)

In the Russian Constructicon, we adopt a set of usage labels to mark those constructions that are restricted to certain styles. The usage labels assigned to constructions can therefore be used as guidelines for second language learners.

If a construction is stylistically neutral and can be used in both informal and formal situations, we do not mark it with a usage label. See the following example of a neutral construction: NP-Nom Cop похожий-Short на NP-Acc (NP-Ins/по NP-Dat) as in Вася похож на папу ‘Vasja looks like his dad’.

If a construction is stylistically not neutral and therefore is restricted to a certain usage domain, we mark it with one of three usage labels: either as Colloquial, Formal or Obsolete.

Types of stylistically restricted constructions:

In the Russian Constructicon, there are no constructions tagged as Specialized. In other words, there are no constructions that can only be used by speakers who belong to a certain profession.

4.2. Morphological terms

In Advanced Search, it is possible to search for constructions that contain slots and anchors restricted by certain morphological categories. In the search window, the morphological tags are listed in alphabetical order. The tables below offer an overview of these tags as a system. The first table lists the tags for grammatical categories, whereas the second table lists the tags for grammatical classes, that is parts of speech and syntactic units (which also indicate parts of speech). The third table lists the morphological tags that apply to several parts of speech.

We list the tags as full words and provide corresponding abbreviations that appear in the Advanced Search window in parentheses (). All items listed with bullet points and abbreviations are tags available in Advanced Search (Morphology), others are headings that organise them.

• Nominative (Nom)• Masculine (M)• Singular (Sg)• First person (1)
• Genitive (Gen)• Feminine (F)• Plural (Pl)• Second person (2)
• Partitive genitive (Gen2)• Neuter (N)• Third person (3)
• Dative (Dat)TenseAspectMood
• Accusative (Acc)• Past (Pst)• Perfective (Pfv)• Imperative (Imp)
• Instrumental (Ins)• Present (Prs)• Imperfective (Ipfv)• Subjunctive (Sbjv)
• Locative (Loc)• Future (Fut)

Lexical parts of speechLexical parts of speechFunctional parts of speech
• Bare noun (Noun)• Adverb (Adv)• Interjection (Intj)
• Adjective (Adj)• Predicative (Pred)• Preposition (Prep)
• Collective numeral (NumColl)• Auxiliary (Aux)• Coordinating conjunction (Cconj)
• Cardinal numeral (NumCrd)• Bare stem (Bare)• Subordinating conjunction (Sconj)
• Ordinal numeral (NumOrd)• Copula (Cop)Syntactic units
Pronoun:• Converb (Cvb)• Clause (Cl)
• Demonstrative pronoun (PronDem)• Infinitive (Inf)• Noun phrase (NP)
• Interrogative/relative pronoun (PronInt)• Active participle (PtcpAct)• Prepositional phrase (PP)
• Personal pronoun (PronPers)• Passive participle (PtcpPass)• Verb phrase (VP)
• Possessive pronoun (PronPoss)• Bare verb (Verb)• Any phrasal unit (XP)

Morphology tags that apply to several parts of speech
• Comparative form of adjective or adverb (Cmp)
• Short form of adjective or participle (Short)

4.3. Syntactic terms

4.3.1. Syntactic type of construction

In the Russian Constructicon, we adopt a set of terms to tag syntactic types of constructions:

4.3.2. Syntactic function of anchor

An anchor is a fixed part of a construction, it can be specific words or it can be the structure of a construction like word order or reduplication. In the Russian Constructicon, we adopt a set of terms to tag syntactic functions of anchors:

4.3.3. Syntactic structure of anchor

An anchor is a fixed part of a construction, it can be specific words or it can be the structure of a construction like word order or reduplication. In the Russian Constructicon, we adopt a set of terms to tag syntactic structures of anchors:

4.3.4. Part of speech of anchor

An anchor is a fixed part of a construction, it can be specific words or it can be the structure of a construction like word order or reduplication. In the Russian Constructicon, we adopt a set of terms to tag the parts of speech the anchors represent:

4.4. Semantic terms

4.4.1. Semantic types

In the Russian Constructicon, we employ a set of terms to tag semantic types of constructions. Explanations of individual semantic tags are available here.

4.4.2. Semantic roles

We annotate all definitions of constructions and corpus-based example sentences for semantic roles, focusing primarily on the semantic roles of the slots. In descriptions of constructions, the annotated portions of text are put in square brackets [], and the corresponding semantic role appears in the subscript highlighted with color. In Advanced Search, the user can search for constructions with slots that perform a particular semantic role. Our understanding of semantic roles does not deviate from standard linguistic descriptions (cf. Апресян 1974/1995). Explanations and illustrations of semantic roles will appear here later.

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