This essay focuses on translation issues with respect to lexicographic and bilingual dictionaries purposes. I will analyze a particular class of words in Russian, the so called “predicatives”, especially in a contrastive view with Italian (some reference to other Europen languages will be made), not foreseeing, the latter, neither a morpho-syntactic nor a semantic-lexical parallel. After a brief description of the main features and grammatical functions of these lexical forms, some difficulties which may occur during lexicographic processing will be discussed, primarily from a translating point of view, bringing forth some considerations about their coherence with given examples, grammatical information and possible explanations. Untranslatability is often not merely a semantic but also, in many cases, a grammatical issue; this is what happens in those cases when a grammatical phenomenon, present in one language, is not in another, as for example “articles”, “aspects of the verbs” and so on. To this type of phenomena we believe we can ascribe Russian “predicatives” as well. They represent indeed a special category of words within the overall European linguistic setting, having some equivalent just in other Slavonic languages.
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