February 28th, 2007

don't fear death

(no subject)

more gray day. made me sleep in. :)
i bought two small plants for my room to chase the gray away.

Czech class today and a quote from a book i am reading:
Czech is so rich, precise and, unfortunately, also complicated that a foreigner trying to learn the language may be driven to suicide. Either because he or she never manages to learn it, or because of the utter depression that follows when the foreigner realizes how primitive his or her native tongue is.

i have also been reading about the Battle of White Mountain in 1620 that practically eradicated the Czech language. The Jesuits destroyed Czech literature in an attempt to germanize the Czechs and the language was reduced to simple communication among peasants. The historian Jan Machal writes, "Any person who wanted to be considered as well-bred and educated, was clinging with body and soul to German, and those who still cared about Czech were regarded as fools or even lunatics."

it wasn't until 1780, with the crowning of Josef II, that Czech rose from the dead in a period knows as the Czech National Revival. even german loan words were tossed out of the language and either replaced with revived words or created! Josef Jungmann published a five-volume Czech-German dictionary of loan words that had been transformed. no other language has a stricter grammar or more cases. it is also the only language that can have an entire sentence without one vowel! there are also now three distinct versions of Czech: literary, spoken and common (literary is official - not unlike Arabic from what little i have learned).

so, for fun, Collapse ), the Czech alphabet ;)
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