Slovak Language Lessons for Beginners - Lesson 16


Lesson 16
 


USEFULLY EVASIVE WORDS AND PHRASES
Learn these phrases and you'll sound just like a Slovak politician:

Bez komentára.
= No comment.
Nemôžem to potvrdiť, ani vyvrátiť. = I can neither confirm, nor deny (literally: refute) that.
Je predčasné o tom hovoriť. = It is premature to talk about that.

NEWS-RELATED AND POLITICAL VOCABULARY
správy = news
správa = message, report
noviny = newspaper
denník = daily newspaper
tlač (fem.) = press
tlačová konferencia (also tlačová beseda, or colloquially tlačovka) = press conference
fotoaparát = photo camera
kamera = video camera
mikrofón = microphone
novinár, novinárka (also redaktor, redaktorka) = journalist (m, f)
reportér, reportérka = reporter (m, f)
hovorca (masc.), hovorkyňa = spokesman, spokeswoman
rozhovor (also interview) = interview
otázka = question
odpoveď (fem.) = answer
pýtať sa (stem: pýta- sa) = to ask (questions about sth)
odpovedať (stem: odpovedá-) = to answer
žiadať (stem: žiada-) = to request, to ask for
vyhlásenie (neut.) = statement
príhovor = (formal) speech, usually short
prejav = (formal) speech, usually longer
debata = debate
prehľad = overview
zhrnutie (neut.) = summary
možnosť (fem.) = possibility, choice
voľby
= election
hlas = a vote (also, a voice)
voliť (stem: volí-) = to vote
ponuka = offer
ponúkať (stem: ponúka-) = to offer
prijať (stem: prijíma-) = to accept
odmietnuť (stem: odmieta-) = to refuse
zamietnuť (stem: zamieta-) = to decline, to refuse formallyň
podpora = support (noun)
podporovať (stem: podporuje-) = to support
rokovať (stem: rokuje-) = to negotiate
súhlasiť (stem: súhlasí-) = to agree
nesúhlasiť (stem: nesúhlasí-) = to disagree

potvrdiť (stem: potvrdzuje-) = to confirm
popierať (stem: popiera-) = to deny
predpovedať (stem: predpovedá-) = to predict
vymenovať (stem: vymenúva-) = to appoint (someone into office)
odvolať (stem: odvoláva-) = to recall (a politician from his office), to take back (what one has said)
odstúpiť (stem: odstupuje-); also rezignovať (stem: rezignuje-)  = to step down, to resign

DESCRIBING ABSTRACT PROPERTIES: -NESS, -ITY

We can use the suffix -osť to turn adjectives into abstract properties. Please note that all nouns that end in -osť are of the feminine gender.

schopný = able                       schopnosť = ability
úprimný = sincere                  úprimnosť = sincerity
unavený = tired                      unavenosť = tiredness
blízky = near, close (adj.)        blízkosť = proximity
skromný = humble, modest     skromnosť = humility, modesty
náročný = difficult           náročnosť = difficulty
zelený = green               zelenosť = greenness
presný = precise             presnosť = precision
minulý = past (adj.)          minulosť = the past (literally: 'pastness')
budúci = future (adj.)        budúcnosť = the future (literally: 'futureness')

NOUNS THAT DESCRIBE ACTIVITIES: THE '-NIE' SUFFIX

We can use the suffix -nie to turn verbs into nouns that describe activities. Using the -nie prefix in Slovak is roughly equivalent to using -ing at the end of English nouns. 
In many cases, you can simply remove the final from the verb infinitive, and replace it by -nie. This is true especially if the infinitive ends in -ať. (See examples below.) 
Important: All nouns that end in -nie are neuter.

písať (stem: píše-) = to write                písanie = writing (noun)
čítať (stem: číta-) = to read                  čítanie = reading (noun)
ďakovať (stem: ďakuje-) = to thank     ďakovanie = thanking (noun)
Often, when the infinitive ends in -iť, the corresponding noun will end in -enie rather than -anie:
šíriť = to spread, to disseminate          šírenie = spreading (noun)
svietiť = to shine, to be alight              svietenie = shining, being alight (noun)
Podľa mňa je čítanie veľmi nudné. = In my opinion (literally: 'according to me'), reading is very boring.

PREPOSITIONS AND THE ACCUSATIVE CASE OF PERSONAL PRONOUNS

Later in this lesson, we will talk about the propositions that are followed by the accusative case. When personal pronouns are preceded by a preposition that requires the accusative case, the accusative case form of these pronouns is somewhat different from the standalone accusative form (which we covered in [Lesson 13]). See here:

nominative case (subject)                  accusative case after prepositions (direct object) 
 ja = I                            mňa
 ty = you (sg. informal)           teba
 on = he                           neho                                                                      
 ona = she                         ňu                                                                        
 
 my = we                           nás     
 vy = you (pl., or sg. formal)     vás 
 my = oni, ony                     nich

PREPOSITIONS ASSOCIATED WITH THE ACCUSATIVE CASE
The prepositions pre ('for') and cez ('through'), as well as bez ohľadu na ('regardless of', 'irrespective of') are always followed by the words in the accusative case:

Túto hračku som kúpil nielen pre neho, ale aj pre ňu a pre vášho syna.
= I bought this toy not only for him, but also for her and for your son.
Náš autobus musí ísť najprv cez nebezpečný most a potom cez veľkú križovatku. = Our bus must first go though a dangerous bridge and then though a large crossroads.
Bez ohľadu na vašu schopnosť tu byť načas, musíte zajtra prísť do práce. = Regardless of your ability to be here on time, you have to come to work tomorrow.

Other prepositions that are, in some specific circumstances, followed by the accusative case are na ('on','onto'), pod ('under'), nad ('above'), za ('behind','[in exchange] for'), pred ('in front of') and medzi ('between'). We use the accusative case with these propositions when they express direction - such as when an object is moving to a new position (say, 'onto' a table, or 'into' the trash can). By contrast, when the prepositions simply describe the current position on an object, they are followed by other grammatical cases - ones we have not covered yet. When the accusative case is used, the question that is implicitly being answered is 'Where to?' rather than 'Where at?'

Zelenú knihu som položil na tamtú malú stoličku. = I put the green book on that small chair over there.
Novinár si odložil svoj mikrofón pod stôl. = The journalist put away his microphone under the desk.
Mal by si sa pozerať trochu nad okno, ale pod strechu: Tam to je! = You should be looking a little above the window, but below the roof: There it is!
Určite sa utiekol skryť za tú vysokú stenu. = Surely, he ran away to hide behind the that tall wall.
Vymenil som svoju obľúbenú hračku za novú počítačovú hru. = I exchanged my favorite toy for a new computer game.
Svoje auto zaparkovali medzi náš dom a vašu záhradu. = They parked their car between our house and your garden.

GIVEN..., GIVEN THAT...

vzhľadom na... = given ... (followed by a noun)
Vzhľadom na neskorý príchod vlaku asi nebudem schopný prísť dostatočne skoro. = Given the late arrival of the train, I probably won't be able to come early enough.
keďže = given that... (followed by a clause)
Keďže vlak príliš dlho meškal, žiadny pasažier nestihol večerné predstavenie. = Given that the train was too late, no passanger made the evening performance.

DOWNLOAD:
You can download the entire lesson in MP3 format [here]. Just right click, and choose "Save as..."

Comments