Vitame Vas?

Discussion in 'Vocabulary & Translation Help' started by llg, May 6, 2004.

  1. llg

    llg New Member

    Hi -- I just wanted to make sure "vitame vas" really does mean "We welcome you" as I was told. And if anyone can help me with pronunciation, I'd love that, too. Thanks!
  2. Lorenzo

    Lorenzo Well-Known Member

    Hi there,

    Yes, that´s correct. Vitáme Vás means "We welcome you".
    I´ll try to help you with pronunciation though I´m not a native speaker of Czech. Just pronounce "Vit" like "bit" in English and "áme" like "Ame" in the word "America". The á in "Vás" is like the one in the english word "car".
    Hope this helps, further inputs are welcome :)

  3. Halef

    Halef Well-Known Member

    Vít is more like "beat" than "bit"

    You can find some pronounciation help with long vowels on LocalLingo

    Ame as in America, but the "a" should also be long - [a:]
  4. idemtidem

    idemtidem Well-Known Member

    I'm kind of confused. If you say it's pronounced like beat, is that really how someone would explain the correct pronounciation of the word "vitame" to an English speaking person? I'd say it's "beat" but with "v" in the beginning instead. Am I wrong?
  5. Karel

    Karel Well-Known Member

    Vitame = Vi + ta + me

    Czech - English

    Vi = v (the letter in the alphabet)
    ta = ta (BrE, thank you)
    me = MElon/MEAdow

    So it would go : vtamea (stress is on "v", but the Czech "v" is much more relaxed, so don`t bury your upper teeth in your lower lip that aggressively. :D

    In BrE, the Czech word "Vas" rhymes with "vAst" (just drop the "t"). In AmE, the "A" phoneme is found in words like "pOt, dOt, bOttle"

    Hope this is of some interest

  6. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Here's my attempt at describing the pronunciation of 'Vítáme vás:'

    vee-tah-meh vahs

    The 'vee,' 'tah,' and 'vahs' have long vowels in them, so as Halef suggested, check the pronunciation of 'í' and 'á' on
  7. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    A note on describing vowel sounds in English and Czech:

    I think there should be some care taken in describing "long" vowel sounds to a native English speaker. Typically, in English a long vowel sound is meant as one that has the same sound as when pronouncing the letter itself, e.g. the long (in the English sense) "a" is pronounced as the letter "A"; or pronounced "ej" in Czech. Note the usual distinction of the "long a" is the way in English to phonetically distinguish the "a" sound in "game" (long) from the sound,of "a" in "ham" (short) [There are of course other sounds the letter "a" can have in English, but I'm just emphasizing what English speakers call "long" and "short"]. By the way, there is no Czech equivalent to the English short "a".

    In contrast, when a Czech uses the term "long" vowel, designated in Czech by what looks like an accent mark ("čarka" in Czech), he/she is referring to the actual length of the vowel sound, i.e. one actually pronounces the vowel sound the same as the short ("unaccented", or without čarka) vowel, only making the sound for a longer period of time. Note, that the čarka is not an accent in the sense of marking the syllable as stressed! The Czechs invariably stress the first syllable. This distinction may not be clear to native English speakers at first.

    Confused yet? :?

    Having said all of this, the word "bit" in English uses the short "i" sound, which is not found in the Czech pronunciation. "Beat" or "beet" are more appropriate to describe the Czech "i". Note, in English, this sound is the long "e" (again, with or without a čarka!).

    My (American) perspective on this is that Dana's description is closer to how an English speaker would phonetically write the phrase:

    I would try this in phonetic symbols, but the symbols have changed since I was in school, and I am not familiar with the new symbols :( .

    Note: The Czech "t" is not equivalent to the English "th" as in "thank you" (not even in British English). The Czech "t" is basically equivalent to the English "t", except that the Czech version is somewhat softer. There is no Czech equivalent to the English "th."
  8. llg

    llg New Member

    Thank you, everyone! You've been so helpful, and I'm feeling a bit more confident now. :)
  9. Krocak

    Krocak New Member

    I just found this site and happen to be wearing a t-shirt with "Vitame Vas" Kolacky Days, Montgomery, Mn on it. That's my home town, and proud of it's Czech heritage. I'm just chucking at the coincidence! :lol:

Share This Page