ADS-L Digest - 23 Mar 2006 to 24 Mar 2006 (#2006-84)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Apr 3 18:33:41 UTC 2006

At 8:44 AM -0500 3/27/06, Landau, James wrote:
>- a favorite example of mine is the word "troika", not the carriage but
>the usage introduced by Nikita Krushchev meaning "triumvirate".  When he
>proposed setting up a troika to run the UN, he introduced a word into
>English (and effectively removed the word "triumvirate").

Not according to the OED:
2. A group or set of three persons (rarely things) or categories of
people associated in power; a three-person commission or
administrative council. Also attrib.

1945 [see N.K.V.D. s.v. N II. 1].
1954 C. P. SNOW New Men xl. 286 Faith, hope, and hate: that was the
troika which rushed him on.
1957 Times Lit. Suppl. 15 Nov. 682/1 The so-called troika, or
commission of three, which authorized summary executions.

Then there are a couple from 1961, with reference to Khrushchev.


The American Dialect Society -

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