2018. № 3 (17), 11-22

Vinogradov Russian Language Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences 


  This article deals with serveral issues related to the history of Russian standard pronunciation, in particular, the normative status of the features of consonantism which are considered specific features of the old-Moscow pronunciation. The article tries to more accurately determine the features of the functioning of certain orthoepic norms. The analysis of the linguistic works of the first half of the 20th century shows (contrary to the widely held opinion) clear fluctuation of certain orthoepic norms. The data of this study indicate that at the turn of the 19th–20th centuries the variability in the pronunciation of certain features considered to be specifically Old Moscow was quite significant. A negative evaluation of some of these options means that (despite the shaky patterns) pronouncing “according to old-Moscow norms” by the speakers of the literary language (and also by the researchers) was in some cases regarded as preferable. Throughout the 20th century the movement towards the “junior standard” (in the terminology of M. V. Panov) was naturally strengthened, but even nowadays the old Moscow variants are classified as permissible in the standard language (with different regulatory status). Thus, fluctuations within the limits of norms are preserved at all stages of language development, and the task of the codifier is to determine the amplitude of such oscillations.