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Tips and advice on learning Bulgarian

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Bo

Postby Bo » Thu Oct 19, 2006 5:47 am

Cookoid_0 wrote: I have a question about the use of "Zdravei". This is the informal form I understand but when is the use of this form appropriate. I remember from studying french at school there is some similar formal/informal form. What would be the appropriate form for me to address an older person in the village, or the village mayor?


Yes, you are correct. The informal is Zdravey, the formal (as in your example with French when addressing someone formally) would be Zdraveyte. However, a simple Dobar Den would suit both occasions.

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scot47
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Postby scot47 » Thu Oct 19, 2006 6:37 am

When to use formal and when to use informal ?

It gets complicated but generally :
To children, people you are on first-name terms with, family and friends - FAMILIAR ( ie 'thou')

To strangers, adults, those in a position of authority - FORMAL ( ie 'you')

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Chippy
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Postby Chippy » Thu Oct 19, 2006 9:24 am

......... just bought the CD's from Melly. I was embarrased by my lack of Bulgarian last time I went over. My language skills are getting worse. I reckon there are so many interesting people in the villag where I have a place and it would be at least good to have the simplest of conversations.

I am going to go for it over the winter period. Here goes!

Chippy

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Phreddy
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Postby Phreddy » Sat Dec 29, 2007 4:33 am

Strong I have found a sentence that says: I have a strong headache: Imam cilina glavabulna
Please ignore any spelling mistakes, I am away from the book. The real question is can I use the 'strong' word as say 'cilino dete' strong child or cilina jena, strong woman and does this say woman or child capable of hard work, lifting heavy loads.

The reason that I ask is that the English use of the sentence should be a 'bad' headache, not a 'strong' one.


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skaviva
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Postby skaviva » Sat Dec 29, 2007 7:13 am

Languages are never completely logical; so, yes, we say "a strong headache".

Oracle

Postby Oracle » Sat Dec 29, 2007 8:50 am

Yes, but what is meant in BG by a strong headache is exactly a bad one in English. It's not that languages are not logical. Indeed, they are supremely so. It is that languages do not translate literally :lol:

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Postby Phreddy » Thu Jan 03, 2008 4:59 am

Thank you both, it wasn't that I didn't understand the headache, just if it was the same strong.

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Postby mastylo » Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:18 am

Oracle wrote: It's not that languages are not logical. Indeed, they are supremely so.

And the most logical thing in Bulgarian is that almost each grammar rule has exceptions :lol: Irregularity is the supreme logic here. :lol:

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scot47
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Postby scot47 » Thu Jan 03, 2008 11:45 am

Logic ? One of the funniest questions I heard from a learner was this :-
'Where do you live ?" in English is 4 words. However in Bulgarian it is "Kude zhiveyesh ?" Two words.

What happened to the missing two words ?

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Postby skippiebg » Mon Feb 25, 2008 6:28 pm

scot47 wrote:'Where do you live ?" in English is 4 words. However in Bulgarian it is "Kude zhiveyesh ?" Two words.

What happened to the missing two words ?


As you may have guessed, the two remaining words are _inflected_ (a grammatical word, sorry!) to do the job of the missing two. Easier _felt_ than explained, but I'll have a go, not least because one has to know a bit of the theory in order to develop gut sense:-

- "kude" means "where" and remains uninflected (in its "pure" form);

- "zhiveesh" derives from inflecting the noun "zhivot" (life) into "zhiveene" ("living") and the verb "zhiveya" ("I live"). Putting "zhiveya" into the second person singular gives you "zhiveesh". (The polite form is "zhiveete" which is, as we know [!?], the same as the second person plural.)

In any case, since literal translation is silly (try Babel Fish and you'll see what I mean), "where do you live" is not really the equal of "kude zhiveesh". "Where livest thou" comes a bit closer (the otherwise ungrammatical neologism "where livestthou" is in fact it!). The literal rendering of "where do you live" in Bulgarian would be the meaningless and puzzling "kude pravi ti zhivot". Render _that_ back into English and you get the meaningless and puzzling "where make you life".

Bulgarian thankfully has little so-called case inflection (like for instance Russian with six cases, Serbian and Ukrainian with seven and Estonian and Finnish with upwards of 14!!!).

But Bulgarian verbs are bl**dy complex!


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