Inscription on Russian camera

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by steve_bellayr, Aug 11, 2020.

  1. I purchased a Kiev 4 a while back with a Russian inscription that looks professional. I am wondering if anyone reads Russian and can translate the inscription for me. I am posting a photograph. I think the bottom line is a date. Thank you.
  2. Probably retirement gift.
    "To Anatoliy Nikolaevich ( first and middle name, no last name) from associates of regional plant protection station ."
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  3. With nothing better to do at the moment I Googled that name. Lots of interesting results.
  4. A while back I wanted to sell a pair of USSR binoculars.There was a word in large Russian lettering on the case, and thinking it was a brand name and that quoting it in the listing would help the sale, I found a table of English vs Cyrillic alphabets on the internet. A few minutes work revealed the word was actually BINOCULARS.
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  5. Thank you. Was the bottom line a date? I think I found someone my area with those two first names.
  6. Yes--it's 23 January 1981, where that little backwards "s" is a "g" for year, pronounced roughly "goat"
    Currently Anatoly is the 22nd most popular Russian boy's name, and Nikolai is #12. "Nikolaivich" is a patronymic--it indicates that our Anatoly's father's name was Nikolai. What this means is that there are a lot of Anatoly Nikolaiviches out there, so I'm not surprised that Sanford found a lot of hits.
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  7. Thank you. As common as the name is the items that I purchased (I am not selling them) were donated locally. That means that the individual with those first two names lives not far from me. And, they in the USA are extremely uncommon. Just interesting. This would make the camera a very early Kiev 4am. Again, thank you.
  8. In those times, it was quite expensive gift. That camera was probably one of the last in stock, they stop producing them in 1980.
  9. The Kievs were quite well built cameras (thanks to scarpering off with the entire Zeiss factory). If they had any faults it was slightly poorer QC than Zeiss used and some of the more questionable (though understandable) design decisions due to patents owned by Leitz like the rangefinder design and the shutter design. And the weird bent finger way of avoiding the viewfinder while focusing the 50mm lenses on the internal bayonet. I have a couple of IIAs (Zeiss not Russian) which were Zeiss's successor to the model the Kievs were created from. The bent finger thing went away (at the expense of slightly less accurate focusing) and they were probably better cameras, but still delicate in a way Leicas decidely were not. As a result the Zeiss cameras are harder to keep working. Maybe there are still more old soviet service techs still fixing the Kievs. Fixing the Zeiss rangefinders are murder these days. Though ironically easier than the later Contax G since electronics tend to be the weakest link in those.
  10. Ah yes retirement gifts. Another good idea gone from corporate practice unless you are in the golden 0.1% who get a golden exit. I bet they've largely vanished in Russia too.
  11. Beats being escorted out the door with a security guard on each arm.
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  12. The donator is unlikely to be the original owner. If they retired nearly 40 years ago, it very probably been sold on at least once.:rolleyes:

    I suspect I've brought more Russian lenses, in the last ten years than there are Russians who have emigrated to your entire state.:eek:
  13. Typically the "gold watch" or gift such as this is gone in corporate culture in the US. Some high ranking people at Lockheed Martin where I retired from got little model airplanes. Other than that, there was a "gift catalog" outsourced to another company where you could select stuff based on years of service, but typically they weren't particularly nice or memorable and they certainly weren't "personal" in the way that this camera is. I was one of the last generation of retirees with any kind of pension, though it was pretty minimal. The thing is that it wouldn't be that expensive to make your retirement gift personal and relevant to your actual service. Note that I DID get a largish picture of our airplane with people signing it. That too was relatively inexpensive for the company (they didn't frame it) but it did feel more personal and welcome. It doesn't have to be a Leica M, or an expensive gold watch though. Just something lasting to remind yourself of your experiences.

    This Kiev is a pretty cool retirement gift.
    Robin Smith likes this.
  14. Thanks for the replies. I guess my thoughts posted earlier about the origin of the camera in my state were wrong.

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