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Beautiful Slovenia
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 03-Aug-05 19:58  Reply with quote

The New York Times: In Ljubljana, the Old Europe and the New Are Still in Balance

EXCERPT:

FROM the 16th-century fortress walls atop Castle Hill, the view of Ljubljana is exquisite: waves of red-tiled roofs, turquoise domes, spires and, here and there, lacy bridges spanning the green Ljubljanica River, stitching the two sides of Slovenia's capital city together. The overall effect is that of a snow-globe town in the foothills of the Alps.

But as lovely as the view is, there is nothing in that macro-shot that suggests the current source of Ljubljana's vivacity - an intrinsic hum of energy that has, in recent months, generated avid comparisons to the city that everyone seems to long for: Prague circa 1995. The evidence, I decided, must lie in the streets below, so, on a recent summer morning, I headed past Ljubljana's weave of medieval, baroque, and Art Nouveau buildings toward Preseren Square, the city's bustling social hub, which is anchored by the 17th-century Franciscan Church of the Annunciation and monastery and the Triple Bridge.


COMPLETE ARTICLE HERE (you may need to register)


Source: A. Fevzer and slovenia-tourism.si


Source: Bobo and slovenia-tourism.si


Source: T. Reisner and slovenia-tourism.si
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iluvuma1
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Joined: 25 Aug 2004
Posts: 112
Location: United States

PostPosted: 03-Aug-05 21:19  Reply with quote

What language do the people speak in Slovenia? Is the language similar to Czech?
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 03-Aug-05 21:42  Reply with quote

iluvuma1 wrote:
What language do the people speak in Slovenia? Is the language similar to Czech?


Slovene or Slovenian ("slovenski jezik" or "slovenscina") is the main language of Slovenia. It's a Slavic language with many parallels to Czech and Slovak. While Slovene belongs to the South Slavic group, it also has elements in common with the West Slavic languages. After all, both modern-day Slovenia and Czech Republic were a part of Austria for centuries until 1918, and the Slovenes shared a border with the Slovaks in the early Slavic period.

One could say that Slovene is somewhere between Czech/Slovak and Croatian in the Slavic family, but that's not very accurate: It's a very old Slavic language that hasn't changed all that much from Common Slavic in some respects, but nevertheless developed in relative isolation later on, so it doesn't have any really close lingustic relatives (unlike, say, the close connection between Czech and Slovak or between Croatian and Serb). For example, Slovene preserves the archaic dual number (in addition to the singular and the plural); the Lusatian Sorbs are the only other Europeans (not just Slavs!) who have the dual.

How does the dual work? Well, for example, the singular form of "big wagon" is "velik voz", the plural "veliki vozi", but the dual is "velika vozova", and is also conjugated differently than either the singular and the plural ("with big wagons" would be "z velikima vozovoma" in the dual but "z velikimi vozmi" in the plural). "We are coming" would be "Midva prideva" or "Midva bova prisla" if there are exactly two males or one male and one female coming together, "Midve prideva" or "Midve bova prisli" if there are exactly two females coming together, but "Mi pridemo" or "Mi bomo prisli" if there are more than three people coming, regardless of their gender. It would be "Jaz pridem" or "Jaz bom prisel/prisla" in the singular.

Slovene also has definite and indefinite adjectives, for example:

"Velik konj" means "A big horse", and "dober clovek" means "A good person" but...
"Veliki konj" means "THE big horse", and "dobri clovek" means "THE good person"

In other words, Slovenian is a very complex tongue in many respects: It is said to be even harder for a non-Slavic foreigner to learn than Czech (and we know how difficult Czech is!)

If you speak Czech, you may want to check out how much Slovene you can understand by looking through this Slovenian news site:

http://24ur.com/naslovnica/index.php

Slovenia has two other official languages: Italian and Hungarian, but only in areas with Italian and Hungarian national minorities (in the southwest and the northeast of the country, respectively).

If you have any questions, please let me know!


Last edited by AZ2SI on 01-Jun-07 15:32; edited 1 time in total
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Zeisig
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Joined: 14 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: 04-Aug-05 11:50  Reply with quote

Quote:
It's a very old Slavic language ...

I think that all Slavic languages are of the same age.

Quote:
Slovene preserves the archaic dual number (in addition to the singular and the plural); the Lusatian Sorbs are the only other Europeans (not just Slavs!) who have the dual.


It is not utterly true.

The Czech language has preserved the dual number as well, but only in a limited set of nouns (eye, ear, hand, ...) and numerals (two, both, hundred).

E.g. hundred - sto (sing.), stě (dual), sta (plur.)

one hundred - jedno sto
two hundreds - dvě stě
three hundreds - tři sta

The numerals two (dva, dvě) and both (oba, obě) have naturally only the dual number forms.
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 04-Aug-05 16:07  Reply with quote

Zeisig wrote:

I think that all Slavic languages are of the same age.


You're right, but what I tried to say -- and didn't quite put it correctly -- is that Slovene has not changed nearly as much from Common Slavic as most other Slavic languages. Linguist therefore consider Slovene one of the most conservative Slavic tongues -- not really the "oldest."

Zeisig wrote:
It is not utterly true. The Czech language has preserved the dual number as well, but only in a limited set of nouns (eye, ear, hand, ...) and numerals (two, both, hundred).


True; several Slavic languages have preserved some remnants of the dual (Czech, Polish, etc.), but linguists do not consider that the true dual because it only ocurrs in a handful of words and does not have a complete case system. The true grammatical dual was once common among the Slavic languages (even, say, Old Russian had it), but it only exists in Slovene and Lower/Upper Lusatian Sorb nowadays.
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 04-Aug-05 17:33  Reply with quote

If anyone's interested: Czech Radio produced a wonderful report about Slovenia from a Czech perspective last year. You can listen to it here:

Czech Radio: Slovenia (in Czech)

NOTE: If you have difficulties opening the file, go to http://www.rozhlas.cz/evropskaunie/portal/ and select "Slovinsko" from the MP3 list on the left.
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bacciap4
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Joined: 15 Jun 2005
Posts: 2
Location: Kula

PostPosted: 04-Aug-05 23:31  Reply with quote

Hello I am Czech from Serbia

Has Slovenian language any dialects?
Has Slovenian provinces(Kranjska, Koruška, Štajerska) theirown dialects and cultural specifics?
What is origin of the name Karantania?

Is anywhere on internet Slovenian ethnic map or language map?
Has Celovec/Klagenfurt Slovenian majority?
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 05-Aug-05 7:51  Reply with quote

bacciap4 wrote:
Has Slovenian language any dialects?


Slovenian is a language of dialects -- it has about 50 different ones. No-other Slavic language has as many per capita. These dialects are very different; a person from, say, Prekmurje in the east could not understand a person from the Resia (Rezija) Valley in Italy without using Standard Slovene. Some of the dialects are almost like separate languages.

bacciap4 wrote:
Has Slovenian provinces(Kranjska, Koruška, Štajerska) theirown dialects and cultural specifics?


Yes, Slovenia's provinces have their own cultural specifics. Primorska is very Mediterranean in terms of architecture, food, traditions, and general culture -- you would think you were in Slavic-speaking Italy. Gorenjska, Stajerska, Dolenjska, etc. are "Mitteleuropean" -- similar to Austria or the Czech Republic. Prekmurje has a strong Hungarian influence. Bela Krajina in the south has been influenced by migrations of Serbs and Croats in the Middle Ages. These regional identities are very strong; in fact, there are even stereotypes of how Slovenes from different provinces behave. This isn't that unusual per se, since it occurs in some other European countries, but it is unexpected in a country this small (population 2 million).

As an illustration, let's look at architecture: Here is a typical house from the Kranjska region:


Photo: B. Kladnik and slovenia-tourism.si

And here's one from the Mediterranean Primorska region:


Source: www2.arnes.si/~kppomm

bacciap4 wrote:
What is origin of the name Karantania?


I actually don't know what the origin of the name is and am not sure if historians have a definite answer. Of course, Karantania (Caranthania, Carantania, Karantania) was the first Slovene state in the Middle Ages and one of the first Slavic ones. It was remarkable for having some semi-democratic elements in its governmental structure.

bacciap4 wrote:
Is anywhere on internet Slovenian ethnic map or language map?


Unfortuantely, I cannot seem to find a map of Slovene dialects anywhere online, but I'll keep on looking.

bacciap4 wrote:
Has Celovec/Klagenfurt Slovenian majority?


No. While Austrian Carinthia (Kaerenten/Koroska) has a sizeable Slovenian minority (something Austrian nationalist politician Joerg Haider would love to forget), it is concentrated in the countryside rather than in the larger towns.
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bacciap4
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Joined: 15 Jun 2005
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Location: Kula

PostPosted: 05-Aug-05 13:00  Reply with quote

You must be proud for your nationality and state Smile

Half of my father's family has Slovenian origin and other part has Czech. But nobody has not strong connection with either of this lands. Sad

Bye & Thanks Smile

PS: 12 points go to Slovenia for beautiful natural enviroment, culture, architecture and tradition. Smile
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AZ2SI
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: 11-Aug-05 15:56  Reply with quote

Thanks, bacciap4! A part of it is a sense of pride, but when you are as small as Slovenia, you also just have to keep reminding people that you exist. Wink

You, on the other hand, have not one but three wonderful countries to be proud of!
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