Jump to content


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A window with a fortochka (in the upper left corner)

A fortochka (Russian: фо́рточка, IPA: [ˈfortətɕkə] ) is a small ventilation window generally not greater than 35x45 cm.[1] It usually spans the frame of one window pane and opens on hinges independently of the whole window. Fortochkas are in common use in Russia, other post-Soviet states (Ukrainian: кватирка, kvatyrka), and Finland (Finnish: tuuletusikkuna).

A fortochka can be used for ventilation during cold winters, when opening a whole window would be impractical for heat conservation purposes.[2]

The window was designed by Italian architect Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli for the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg in 1754.[3]

Cultural significance[edit]

The true origin of the word appears lost, but its nearest relative appears to be the German "pforte," for "gate" or "gap".[4] Someone referred to as a "fortochnik" is a criminal specializing in the challenging art of sneaking into and out of a fortochka.[5] In the realm of dream interpretation, fortochkas have at least 4 roles – a broken one indicates a wasted effort; a dusty one indicates someone is spreading ill rumors about you; if you look through one, your dreams will come true; if you open one, your life will take a positive turn.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Martinot, Eric (1997). Investments to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Existing Residential Buildings in Countries of the Former Soviet Union (1. print. ed.). Washington, DC: World Bank. p. 117. ISBN 0-8213-4057-3. Retrieved 19 February 2013.
  2. ^ "Master: fortochka". cr.middlebury.edu. Retrieved 2023-09-12.
  3. ^ "Russian 'Fortochka' window". en.villumwindowcollection.com. Retrieved 2023-09-12.
  4. ^ https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/german-english/pforte
  5. ^ "The serial tyrant known as Fortochnik condemned for 12,5 years of a colony". news.myseldon.com. 2023-07-05. Retrieved 2023-09-12.