Czech commands

Discussion in 'General Language' started by General Joy, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. General Joy

    General Joy Well-Known Member

    One thing I have not come across in any of my Czech books is how to say commands. Some of the phrases I've seen that contain a command verb often end in "j" ("nepij tolik", "udelej si to sam"), but not always. So is there a rule for how to turn a verb into a command?
  2. kibicz

    kibicz Well-Known Member

  3. Wicker808

    Wicker808 Well-Known Member

    Hello General Joy,

    What you're looking for is the imperative mood. The most complete description of the formation of the imperative mood I could find online is at the Eastern European Language Center, which has an extensive reference grammar on Czech, among other languages. I cite from it:

    A short summary of the procedure, which should work in most situations for most verbs is:

    1. Start with the third person plural of the verb. Oni dělají
    2. Remove the final vowel. (For our purposes "ou" is considered one vowel.)
    3. If the result ends in "aj" change it to "ej." (except for hrát)
    4. If the result ends in a consonant cluster, add "i."
    5. Add "te" when the command is for more than one person, or for a person you address formally. This will also require changing a final "i" to "ě" or "e." dělejte

    Hope this helps.
  4. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    Imperative forms are derived from present radix by the endings:
    2nd person singular:
    0 (no ending)
    1st plural
    2nd person plural:
    a few examples:
    prosit - pros, prosme, proste
    tisknout - tiskni, tiskněme, tiskněte
    řvát - řvi, řvěme, řvěte
    volat - volej, volejme, volejte
  5. Polednikova

    Polednikova Well-Known Member

    "Clear as mud" as my Nanna used to say! Only joking, I just like the expression.

    It all makes perfect sense but then I've just done the imperative in my Czech class.
  6. General Joy

    General Joy Well-Known Member

    Thanks, everyone. And thanks, Wicker, for providing the term. When I was learning Spanish, I don't remember these type of words being called something other than "commands." But I'm glad you all knew exactly what I meant :)
  7. jen

    jen Well-Known Member

    General Joy, you have the formal imperative in your signature.... :D
  8. General Joy

    General Joy Well-Known Member

    You're right, Jen... good eye. :wink: But I did not translate that sentence myself; I got it from Kdo Chyta v Zite (which we were talking about in another thread).

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