Czech/Czech in a Nutshell

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Czech is an Indo-European, West Slavic Language, especially similar to Slovak, which means it is very likely for a native speaker of each to also understand some Russian, Polish, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, etc. Czech and Slovak are very similar languages, and at first glance, one may incorrectly think of them as being dialects of each other, in the same manner that one might compare Spanish and Catalan. Czech is spoken by 10 million people as a native language and at least 6 million as a de facto second language. Even before the birth of Czechoslovakia in 1918, Czechs and Slovaks have always understood each other without the need of a translator as both have been subjected to Austro-Hungarian domniation for many centuries until after the First World War.

The relatively hard parts of the language are, like all other Balto-Slavic Languages (except Bulgarian and Macedonian):

  • Declination (7 cases)
  • Several types and subtypes of endings for nouns and verbs

The easier parts may be:

  • Simple, regular pronunciation
  • Very simple and straightforward verb conjugations: Only one present tense (imperfective) two types of past and conditional tenses, a compound future (imprf.) a simple future (perf.). Verb are always found in pairs, imperfective on the left and the perfective on the right separated by a dash (usually, but NOT always, one adds a prefix to the imperfective infinitive to change it to perfective).