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Slovak grammar strikes again

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  • Helen Fedor
    Martin, could you explain the grammar behind these 2 article titles from a fairly recent issue of _Novy c~as_? Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu [These are
    Message 1 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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      Martin, could you explain the grammar behind these 2 article titles from a fairly recent issue of _Novy c~as_?

      "Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu" [These are the loves of Marian Hossa [a hockey player])

      "Toto su kandidatky na Divoku kartu" [These are the candidates for the wild card (for "Slovensko hl'ada SuperStar" [the Slovak version of "American Idol"])]

      Why "toto"????

      H
    • Vladimir Bohinc
      I am not Martin, but till he comes I can put my two cents; Toto , tento , tato is this here, closer than other persons or items. tentoraz = this time ( I
      Message 2 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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        I am not Martin, but till he comes I can put my two cents;
        Toto , tento , tato is this here, closer than other persons or items.

        tentoraz = this time ( I forgive you)

        Toto is being used in this case, because there is a photo and you can see them. If there were no photo, then it would have been to.
        Vladimir

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Helen Fedor
        To: Slovak-World@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Wednesday, March 01, 2006 5:49 PM
        Subject: [Slovak-World] Slovak grammar strikes again


        Martin, could you explain the grammar behind these 2 article titles from a fairly recent issue of _Novy c~as_?

        "Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu" [These are the loves of Marian Hossa [a hockey player])

        "Toto su kandidatky na Divoku kartu" [These are the candidates for the wild card (for "Slovensko hl'ada SuperStar" [the Slovak version of "American Idol"])]

        Why "toto"????

        H



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      • Helen Fedor
        Ahhhhhhh. Yes, there were photos. Now I get it. D akujem, H ... I am not Martin, but till he comes I can put my two cents; Toto , tento , tato is this here,
        Message 3 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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          Ahhhhhhh. Yes, there were photos. Now I get it.

          D'akujem,
          H



          >>> konekta@... 03/01/06 1:30 PM >>>
          I am not Martin, but till he comes I can put my two cents;
          Toto , tento , tato is this here, closer than other persons or items.

          tentoraz = this time ( I forgive you)

          Toto is being used in this case, because there is a photo and you can see them. If there were no photo, then it would have been to.
          Vladimir

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Helen Fedor
          To: Slovak-World@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Wednesday, March 01, 2006 5:49 PM
          Subject: [Slovak-World] Slovak grammar strikes again


          Martin, could you explain the grammar behind these 2 article titles from a fairly recent issue of _Novy c~as_?

          "Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu" [These are the loves of Marian Hossa [a hockey player])

          "Toto su kandidatky na Divoku kartu" [These are the candidates for the wild card (for "Slovensko hl'ada SuperStar" [the Slovak version of "American Idol"])]

          Why "toto"????

          H



          SPONSORED LINKS Slovakia phone card Slovakia call Bratislava slovakia
          Hotel slovakia Slovakia phone Slovakia


          ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS

          a.. Visit your group "Slovak-World" on the web.

          b.. To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
          Slovak-World-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

          c.. Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


          ------------------------------------------------------------------------------



          __________ Informacia od NOD32 1.1422 (20060301) __________

          Tato sprava bola preverena antivirusovym systemom NOD32.
          http://www.eset.sk


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



          SPONSORED LINKS
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          Slovak-World-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
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        • Martin Votruba
          ... I know that to/toto ( that / this ) is clear, Helen, just a note: I ll use _to_ in the examples, but they apply to _toto_ as well. Unlike English, Slovak
          Message 4 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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            > "Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu"
            > "Toto su kandidatky na Divoku kartu"

            > Why "toto"????

            I know that to/toto ("that"/"this") is clear, Helen, just a note: I'll
            use _to_ in the examples, but they apply to _toto_ as well.


            Unlike English, Slovak handles the "pointing subject" as genderless
            and numberless.


            On the one hand, English and Slovak do the same thing in:

            Eva is a waitress.
            Eva je casnicka.

            The subject, _Eva_, is a feminine *noun* in the singular, and that is
            copied in _waitress/casnicka_ (the subject complement).


            But English and Slovak differ when the subject in such sentences
            (subject + byt~ + subject complement) is a "pointing" *pronoun*:

            He is a waiter.
            She is a waitress.
            It is a car.
            They are waiters.
            These are cars.

            As we begin to say such a sentence, we don't have a noun yet. English
            anticipates the gender of the subject complement and assigns the
            subject=pronoun that gender in advance.

            Slovak takes the opening pronoun as an act of pointing your finger --
            stretch your arm and touch the book in order to point at it, to single
            it out. There's no gender in this act, the object, book has no
            grammatical gender. Only nouns have gender and we don't have a noun
            yet as we begin the statement. Without a noun (= without grammatical
            gender and number) Slovak defaults to _to_:

            To je casnik.
            To je casnicka.
            To je auto.
            To su casnici.
            To su auta.

            Imagine the opening as not uttering anything -- just silently pointing
            your finger at the object/person you're going to name. The gender and
            number then kick in with the verb:

            To je ten casnik. To bol casnik. To bol ten casnik.
            To je ta casnicka. To bola casnicka. To bola ta casnicka.
            To boli ti casnici.
            Etc.

            It happens in English, too, in statements like "It's that man, call
            the police!" Here _it_ is also like pointing your finger. And _it_
            is the rule in the English "It's me," or in the ultra-correct "It is
            I," -- it would be amusing to say "I am I," in such instances.

            But the pointing, gender/number-insensitive _to_ is the rule in Slovak
            sentences of the type "pointing pronominal subject + byt~ + subject
            complement."


            Martin

            votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu
          • Helen Fedor
            Thanks for the thorough explanation. This time it should stick in my brain. H ... I know that to/toto ( that / this ) is clear, Helen, just a note: I ll use
            Message 5 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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              Thanks for the thorough explanation. This time it should stick in my brain.

              H



              >>> votrubam@... 03/01/06 2:32 PM >>>
              > "Toto su milac~ikovia Mariana Hossu"
              > "Toto su kandidatky na Divoku kartu"

              > Why "toto"????

              I know that to/toto ("that"/"this") is clear, Helen, just a note: I'll
              use _to_ in the examples, but they apply to _toto_ as well.


              Unlike English, Slovak handles the "pointing subject" as genderless
              and numberless.


              On the one hand, English and Slovak do the same thing in:

              Eva is a waitress.
              Eva je casnicka.

              The subject, _Eva_, is a feminine *noun* in the singular, and that is
              copied in _waitress/casnicka_ (the subject complement).


              But English and Slovak differ when the subject in such sentences
              (subject + byt~ + subject complement) is a "pointing" *pronoun*:

              He is a waiter.
              She is a waitress.
              It is a car.
              They are waiters.
              These are cars.

              As we begin to say such a sentence, we don't have a noun yet. English
              anticipates the gender of the subject complement and assigns the
              subject=pronoun that gender in advance.

              Slovak takes the opening pronoun as an act of pointing your finger --
              stretch your arm and touch the book in order to point at it, to single
              it out. There's no gender in this act, the object, book has no
              grammatical gender. Only nouns have gender and we don't have a noun
              yet as we begin the statement. Without a noun (= without grammatical
              gender and number) Slovak defaults to _to_:

              To je casnik.
              To je casnicka.
              To je auto.
              To su casnici.
              To su auta.

              Imagine the opening as not uttering anything -- just silently pointing
              your finger at the object/person you're going to name. The gender and
              number then kick in with the verb:

              To je ten casnik. To bol casnik. To bol ten casnik.
              To je ta casnicka. To bola casnicka. To bola ta casnicka.
              To boli ti casnici.
              Etc.

              It happens in English, too, in statements like "It's that man, call
              the police!" Here _it_ is also like pointing your finger. And _it_
              is the rule in the English "It's me," or in the ultra-correct "It is
              I," -- it would be amusing to say "I am I," in such instances.

              But the pointing, gender/number-insensitive _to_ is the rule in Slovak
              sentences of the type "pointing pronominal subject + byt~ + subject
              complement."


              Martin

              votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu







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              To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
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            • Martin Votruba
              ... Just a clarification -- It is immaterial that there were pictures. In Slovak, it would still be: Toto su casnici. Toto su milacikovia Mariana Hossu. ...
              Message 6 of 6 , Mar 1, 2006
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                > Yes, there were photos.

                Just a clarification -- It is immaterial that there were pictures. In
                Slovak, it would still be:

                Toto su casnici. Toto su milacikovia Mariana Hossu.

                ... if there were real people standing in front of the speaker.


                Martin

                votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu
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