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Re: [Slovak-World] "Boh", part I

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  • Martin Votruba
    I m not familiar with boh ho pobil, Helen. I d guess that it s a reduced version of bodaj (by) ho boh pobil - I wish God would strike him. / Let God
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 11, 2005
      I'm not familiar with "boh ho pobil," Helen. I'd guess that it's a
      reduced version of "bodaj (by) ho boh pobil" - "I wish God would
      strike him. / Let God strike him."

      It is fairly common not to capitalize _Boh_ in the frequent Slovak
      idioms that use the word. The words are sometimes spelled together
      (Preboha! "My goodness!" - literally "For God."). There is
      disagreement as to whether the word still means "God" in them.
      Although emphatic phrases like these are avoided by some religious
      people, they use some other idioms with the word without realizing
      it. An extreme example is _na'boz~enstvo_ "religion," which contains
      the word (in its possessive form Boz~-) and cannot be avoided when
      talking about religion.

      > ani za (z~iveho) boha
      > ani bohovi

      Although there is nothing markedly different in the second phrase by
      comparison to the first one, the second one is indeed considered
      quite offensive, while the first one may be merely expressive (the
      second sentence below).

      Ani za ziveho boha to neurobim! - "No way I'm going to do it!"

      Za ziveho boha si neviem spomenut. - "For the life of me I can't
      remember (it)."

      "Ani bohovi" can replace the phrase in the first sentence (defiant
      meaning), but somewhat less likely so in the second one.


      votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu
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