Slovak: The language with 46 letters
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9 Facts about the Slovak language
Origin of the language
Slovak emerged in Proto-Slavic regions.
History of the language
It first originated during the 11th to 15th centuries.
Learning the language
It takes about 2000 hours to learn Slovak for English speakers.
Slovak language for beginners
Ten basic words to start learning in Slovak:
I am convinced that the vast majority of citizens desire our republic to be the best possible Slovakia.
Politician, Lawyer, Activist
I always knew I wanted to work hard at something.
There will always be someone to criticize me for what I do, but I don’t care what they think.
Professional Road Bicycle Racer
Fun facts about the Slovak language
Codification of Serbian
After Slovak was created by Ľudovít Štúr, Bernolák codified it in Hlboké in July 1843.
Slovak word for coins
The Slovak word for coins, mincecomes from the German word for coins or cash, Münzen.
Borrowing from other languages
In recent years, Slovak has borrowed several words from other languages, including English and Italian.
There are many different dialects within the Slovak language which are categorized into four major groups: Eastern Slovak, Central Slovak, Western Slovak and Lowland.
Czech and Slovak
The Czech and Slovak languages are very similar because, in Czechoslovakia, people had been exposed to both languages daily, primarily through the media.
Vowels pronounced differently
The accents over a vowel determine whether it will be pronounced as a long vowel (e.g. á, é, í, ó, ý, ú). A short vowel never follows a long vowel in the next syllable.
The letters b, d, ď, dz, dž, g, h, z and ž are voiceless if placed at the end of a word. For instance, “d” will sound like “t”.
First syllables always stressed
In Slovak, the stress is always on the world's first syllable, unlike in Russian, in which any syllable can be emphasized.
Three genders in Slovak
The language allows for three genders, which means that any noun could be masculine, feminine or neutral.
Difficulty for English Speakers
Because several consonants are often placed together, Slovak can be relatively difficult for English speakers to pronounce.