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Russian Idiom: “Родился в Cорочке”

Родился в сорочке” (Born with a silver spoon in the mouth or Born with a shirt on as it can be literally translated) is an expression used to talk about a person who is born in a wealthy family.

Сорочка” is a synonym of “рубашка” (a shirt). This noun “Сорочка” is also related to “сорок” (forty) which is very different from all other numerals.

The numeral “сорок” (forty) comes from the Old Russian word “сорокъ”. This word appeared in the old times, among the traders of fur. “Cорокъ” designed a set from four tens of squirrel or sable skins that was necessary to tailor a man's caftan. These sets were usually selected in advanced and sold as one commodity number. And later, it became the numeral that replaced “четыредесят” (forty).

In modern Russian, we also use the expression “сорок сороков” meaning “очень много” (a lot of). This idiom is used a lot in literature and can be met in the work of many writers and poets. “Сорок сороков церквей – стало поэтическим синонимом Москвы” (A lot of churches became a poetic synonym of Moscow):

"Семь холмов – как семь колоколоgt;в!

На семи колоколах – колокольни.

Всех счётом – сорок сороков."

(М.И. Цветаева).

"The seven hills founded – like so many bells grounded!

The seven bells are by many belfries surmounted By the fourscore fourfold tally – unbounded, uncounted!" (Marina Tsvetaeva)

Тамара Мелентьева

Born with a silver spoon in the mouth or…