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Russian toasts

Russian toasts - traditions of alcohol drinking

Today we are going to tell you about Russian toasts that are said when people come together to celebrate a holiday. If you are invited to a Russian party but you don’t know what to say when you sit at a table with Russians, this article will help you a lot!

Russians most frequently use the preposition  “За” [Za] “To + word in the accusative case” to make a toast. Let’s look at a few Russian toasts:

  • За здоровье! “To your health!“ [za zda-ró-vye].

Russians sometimes say: Ваше здоровье! – [vashee zda-ró-vye] – Your health!  They say this toast when they address a person who is older than them, or a group of people.
Твоё здоровье! – [tva-jó zda-ró-vye] – Your health! Russians say this toast when they address a person they know really well.

People in Russian often drink to their own health, and they say the following toast: “Будем здоровы!” [bóo-deem zda-ró-vye”], which we can translate into English as “To our health!”
There is also a toast which does not refer to alcohol drinking. This is a toast “na zda-ró-vye”.  You address this phrase to a person who has thanked you for the meal.

Russian toasts

A few simple toasts:

  • За тебя / За вас!

[za tee-byá / za vas]

To you! / To you (formal)!

  • За твоё здоровье! / За ваше здоровье!

[za tva-jó zda-ró-vye / za vashee zda-ró-vye]

To your health! / To your health! (formal)

  • За встречу! [za fstryé-tchoo] To our meeting!
  • За нашу дружбу! [za ná-shoo dróo-zhboo] To our friendship!
  • За хозяйку этого дома! [za ha-syáj-koo é-ta-wa dó-ma] To the hostess!
  • За любовь! [za lyoo-bóf] To love!
  • За родителей! [za ra-dée-tye-ley] To our parents!
  • Поехали! [pa-yé-kha-lee] Let’s get started!
  • На посошок! [na pa-sa-shók] One for the road!
    This toast means to have a drink as a sign of farewell before you go away.

Russian toasts

A few longer toasts:

  • Давайте выпьем за успех нашего дела! [da-vaj-te vý-pyim za oos-peh na-she-go de-la]

English: Let us drink to the success of our project / business!

  • Выпьем за то, чтобы у нас всегда был повод для праздника! [vý-pyim za to schto-bi u nas vse-gda bil po-vod d-lja pra-zdni-ka]

English: May we always have a reason for a party!

  • Выпьем за то, что мы здесь собрались, и чтобы чаще собирались! [vý-pyim za to ch-to mi zdes se-go-dnya sob-ra-lis]

English: To our get-together! May we meet up more often!

Russian toasts

Birthday toasts:

  • За именинницу / именинника! [Za i-me-nin-nit-su / i-me-nin-ni-ka!]

English: To the birthday girl! / To the birthday boy!

  • Выпьем за то, чтобы мечты исполнялись не только в день рожденья! [vý-pyim za to, chto-byi mech-tyi is-pol-ny-a-lis ne tol-ko v den rozh-den-ya!]

English: May your dreams come true not only on your birthday!

  • Поздравляю с днем рождения! [Poz-drav-lya-yu s dnem rozh-de-ni-ya!]

English: Happy Birthday!

Russian toasts

Wedding toasts:

  • “Горько!” [gór-ka] English: “bitter”.

This is a typical Russian toast at a wedding. When one of the guests say “Горько!”, a  newly married couple should kiss each other.

  • За новобрачных! – [za na-va-brá-tchnyh]. To the newly-weds!
  • За жениха и невесту! – [za zhe-nee-há ee nee-vyé-stoo] To the bride and groom!
  • Выпьем за любовь! Горько! – [vý-pyim za lyoo-bóf. Gór-ka] Let’s drink to love! Gorka!
  • За красавицу невесту! – [za kra-sá-vee-tsoo nee-vyé-stoo] To the beautiful bride!

After a toast has been said, there is a tradition to clink glasses. People clink their glasses to symbolize their unity. In the past, people used to do it in order to demonstrate their trust into each other, as well as to prove that the wine had not been poisoned.

We have collected the most popular toasts for formal gatherings and parties with friends. Good toasts are always an excellent icing for any kind of parties!

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