Croatian (BCS): let's go

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  • Duya

    Senior Member
    Whatever
    "Hajdemo" ili "idemo". However, in everyday speech, the most frequently used form is "ajmo", which is a contraction of the former (which sounds stilted when spoken).

    It's pronounced... well, the same way as in Swedish, I suppose, with stress on the first syllable.
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    It also heavily depends on the local dialect and slang. Expressions like this one often preserve particularly heavy dialectal influences. However, I agree that the most neutral way to say it is "hajdemo" if you want to sound a bit more formal or the contraction "haj'mo"/"'aj'mo" in an informal situation among friends.
     
    Thank you, guys, for the answers!
    Duya, in Swedish words have sometimes double stresses and triple in the case of longer ones. It is a very singing language (swedish chef from Muppet's show? :D

    OK!
    "haj'mo"/"'aj'mo" will be! -with stress in the first syllable.
    The phrase is "let's go to [place]", informal context. I wonder now if the preposition is included
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    Thank you, guys, for the answers!
    Duya, in Swedish words have sometimes double stresses and triple in the case of longer ones. It is a very singing language (swedish chef from Muppet's show? :D

    OK!
    "haj'mo"/"'aj'mo" will be! -with stress in the first syllable.

    Yes, it will sound OK if you just stress the first syllable, and pronounce the first syllable a bit longer.

    The phrase is "let's go to [place]", informal context. I wonder now if the preposition is included
    That depends on the context. It might be one of several different prepositions, or no preposition at all. You'll have to provide a concrete phrase that you want translated.
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    Do you mean that different places need different prepositions??

    The phrase is "let's go to [place]", for example, "let's go to Minneapolis", "let's go to Dubrovnik"
    Yes, the preposition depends on what place you're talking about:

    "let's go to Dubrovnik" = "aj[de]mo u Dubrovnik"
    "let's go to Cuba" = "aj[de]mo na Kubu"
    "let's go to the end" =
    "aj[de]mo do kraja"

    The rules for choosing between prepositions in expressions like this are extremely obscure and complicated. The only good news is that for cities, as far as I can tell, you should always use u, as in the above example with Dubrovnik. For other sorts of places, the rules are much more difficult and illogical, with lots of exceptions that have to be memorized by heart.

    However, in phrases like these, you must also put the city name in the accusative case. If the city name is masculine or neuter, then the accusative is identical to the nominative, but if it's feminine, it usually takes a different suffix. For example, with Rijeka, you have to say "hajdemo u Rijeku".
     

    Sintra99

    Senior Member
    Croatia, Croatian
    As far as I can tell, apart from the cities, most of the countries are also preceeded by the preposition "U". Those that are preceeded by "NA" are usually island countries like above mentioned Cuba because any island requires "NA" preposition.

    hajdemo u Njemačku, u Grčku, u SAD, u Kanadu....

    hajdemo na Island, na Hvar, na Madagaskar, na Siciliju....
     

    Duya

    Senior Member
    Whatever
    The only good news is that for cities, as far as I can tell, you should always use u, as in the above example with Dubrovnik.
    Well, almost. For a certain number of domestic towns, "na/sa" is the correct preposition. As I noticed, that mostly holds for some cities located in the mountains of Herzegovina and Montenegro:

    From/To:
    Sa Sokoca/Na Sokolac
    Sa Cetinja/Na Cetinje
    Sa Pala/Na Pale
    Sa Žabljaka/Na Žabljak

    Incidentally, I was taught that it should also apply to Rijeka, but frankly, I've never heard anyone saying Sa Rijeke/Na Rijeku, so it's either archaic or simply incorrect.
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    As far as I can tell, apart from the cities, most of the countries are also preceeded by the preposition "U". Those that are preceeded by "NA" are usually island countries like above mentioned Cuba because any island requires "NA" preposition.

    hajdemo u Njemačku, u Grčku, u SAD, u Kanadu....

    hajdemo na Island, na Hvar, na Madagaskar, na Siciliju....
    Usually, but not always. Britain is an island, while Kosovo is landlocked, and yet the correct prepositions are "u Britaniju" and "na Kosovo".
     

    Sintra99

    Senior Member
    Croatia, Croatian
    Usually, but not always. Britain is an island, while Kosovo is landlocked, and yet the correct prepositions are "u Britaniju" and "na Kosovo".
    Right. What a headache! I sincerly admire every foreigner willing to unravel the peculiarities of this tricky language. If I wasn´t Croatian I would never be able to learn it! :)
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    Right. What a headache! I sincerly admire every foreigner willing to unravel the peculiarities of this tricky language. If I wasn´t Croatian I would never be able to learn it! :)
    And just think about peninsulas! :D "U Istri" - "na Pelješcu"; "u Bretanji" - "na Peloponezu"...
     
    Yes!
    You managed to give me a headache!
    I don't think I'll learn Croatian perfectly at this point (a fifth...), or to rephrase someone here, I probably won't go 'do kraja'. So I guess I'll stick to the most basic rule for 'u/na' and play the Swedish girl with my best smile, if you see what I mean... Wish me luck! and thanks again.
     

    Tolovaj_Mataj

    Senior Member
    Slovene, Slovenia
    Incidentally, I was taught that it should also apply to Rijeka, but frankly, I've never heard anyone saying Sa Rijeke/Na Rijeku, so it's either archaic or simply incorrect.
    Could be archaic or could be loaned. We in Slovenia say: z Reke / na Reko. But in Slovene rivers are usually governed by a preposition of na.
    Then I thought there was some kind of connection to Italian, but I don't see it in this case: di Fiume / a Fiume.
     

    Yoseep

    New Member
    Croatian, Croatia
    Yes, the preposition depends on what place you're talking about:

    "let's go to Dubrovnik" = "aj[de]mo u Dubrovnik"
    "let's go to Cuba" = "aj[de]mo na Kubu"
    "let's go to the end" =
    "aj[de]mo do kraja"

    The rules for choosing between prepositions in expressions like this are extremely obscure and complicated. The only good news is that for cities, as far as I can tell, you should always use u, as in the above example with Dubrovnik. For other sorts of places, the rules are much more difficult and illogical, with lots of exceptions that have to be memorized by heart.

    However, in phrases like these, you must also put the city name in the accusative case. If the city name is masculine or neuter, then the accusative is identical to the nominative, but if it's feminine, it usually takes a different suffix. For example, with Rijeka, you have to say "hajdemo u Rijeku".


    I can not agree with some statements here.

    - first of all, one translation is wrong or not completely correct

    "aj[de]mo do kraja" - this would mean let's go till the end
    "let's go to the end" - this would be "idemo na kraj"

    furthermore, I can not agree that the rules "for choosing between prepositions in expressions like this are extremely obscure and complicated"

    in fact the rules are quite simple...

    if you're referring to some city or country you can ALWAYS use the U preposition... it may be an island as well...

    You can say Idem U Veliku Britaniju (I'm going to the Great Britain) as well as Idem U Island, Idem U Kubu ... it depends what do you want to stress. If you want to stress the fact that Island is an island (geographically) then you'll say Idem na Island or Idem na Kubu (what is more common form)... in both cases the phrase and the meaning are perfectly clear and correct. if you're referring to the cities you don't even have to think. It's always U.

    I am going to London - Idem u London
    I live in London - Živim u Londonu

    "Na" preposition in most of the cases has the same meaning as the preposition ON in English... and it's good to use it when you want to express the fact that something is placed on certain surface. e.g. the books on the shelves (Knjige na polici), or Socialist republic of Cuba on the island of Cuba etc...

    Kosovo, however is indeed a specific case due to etymology of that term. The word Kosovo was (and still is) an adjective (shortened form) of the historic term Kosovo Polje (Kosovo Field)... therefore the usage of the preposition NA in this case is also logically understandable.

    Croatian, indeed, is not a simple language to learn but the prepositions are
    a lesson that is quite easy to deal with.
     

    Yoseep

    New Member
    Croatian, Croatia
    And just think about peninsulas! :D "U Istri" - "na Pelješcu"; "u Bretanji" - "na Peloponezu"...
    you're mixing some important facts here again.

    > when you're referring to Istra... you're talking about one region in Croatia (that is de facto a peninsula, but that's irrelevant here)... same thing with other regions, countries... so something is placed IN (U) that region, country... if you really want to emphasize the fact that Istra is a peninsula then you'll use the term Istarski poluotok (Istrian peninsula) and in that case you'll use NA (eng. ON) as a preposition.

    > when you're referring to Pelješac - you're talking about a peninsula and just about peninsula as a geographic term that has no other meanings. it's the same thing with other geographic terms; islands, peninsulas, mountains, rivers or other (geographic) surfaces

    exactly the same thing with Bretanja and Peloponez.
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    you're mixing some important facts here again.

    > when you're referring to Istra... you're talking about one region in Croatia (that is de facto a peninsula, but that's irrelevant here)... same thing with other regions, countries... so something is placed IN (U) that region, country... if you really want to emphasize the fact that Istra is a peninsula then you'll use the term Istarski poluotok (Istrian peninsula) and in that case you'll use NA (eng. ON) as a preposition.

    > when you're referring to Pelješac - you're talking about a peninsula and just about peninsula as a geographic term that has no other meanings. it's the same thing with other geographic terms; islands, peninsulas, mountains, rivers or other (geographic) surfaces

    exactly the same thing with Bretanja and Peloponez.
    Yeah, I'm sure all this is perfectly logical and intuitively clear to someone learning the language... :D

    Of course that there must be some difference in the way these different peninsulas are categorized in native speakers' heads, since in each case the wrong preposition really feels ungrammatical. Your explanation might be correct, but the problem is that this categorization is for the most part utterly arbitrary. There is no objective reason why "Istria" feels more like a region than like a peninsula to a native Croatian speaker, but "Pelješac" or "Peloponnes" doesn't, just like there is no objective reason why "Britain" feels like a surface rather than an island, unlike, say, "Iceland". In each case, a language learner just has to learn the correct prepositions by heart.
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    - first of all, one translation is wrong or not completely correct

    "aj[de]mo do kraja" - this would mean let's go till the end
    "let's go to the end" - this would be "idemo na kraj"


    I'd say you're nitpicking too much. "Na kraj"/"do kraja" is often interchangeable in phrases like these. However, in this particular phrase, I'd definitely opt for my above translation if "end" has a more abstract meaning.

    furthermore, I can not agree that the rules "for choosing between prepositions in expressions like this are extremely obscure and complicated"

    in fact the rules are quite simple...

    if you're referring to some city or country you can ALWAYS use the U preposition... it may be an island as well...

    You can say Idem U Veliku Britaniju (I'm going to the Great Britain) as well as Idem U Island, Idem U Kubu ... it depends what do you want to stress.
    Frankly, I think you're inventing this out of whole cloth. :cool:

    I'm a native speaker, and *"idem u Kubu" sounds awfully ungrammatical to me. Mind you, I'm not criticizing it from a prescriptivist standpoint -- it really sounds like to me like an utterance that native speakers would never produce, except maybe if they aren't aware that Cuba is an island. Just try googling for some phrases like, say, "otputovati na Kubu" and *"otputovati u Kubu".

    "Na" preposition in most of the cases has the same meaning as the preposition ON in English...
    Indeed, on = na is a decent first-order approximation, but there are many cases in which it doesn't hold.

    Croatian, indeed, is not a simple language to learn but the prepositions are a lesson that is quite easy to deal with.
    You haven't talked much in Croatian with people who aren't real native speakers, have you? :D

    Frankly, I'd say that the prepositions are among the very hardest things in the Croatian grammar, right after the verbal aspects and the syntax of clitics. It's certainly one of those things in which learners will make constant mistakes long after they've mastered all the tables of cases and conjugations.
     

    Duya

    Senior Member
    Whatever
    Heh, just this morning I got another idea concerning this topic, et voila, I found it revived... (though my topic has nothing to do with the continuation).

    Another toughie regarding "u"/"na" are city parts. The rule seems to be: if the city part/neighbourhood was once a town or village on its own, "u" should be used; otherwise, it should be "na". Exceptions seem to be numerous, though.

    Take for example cities I'm more familiar with, Belgrade and Novi Sad. Answers to "odakle si?" are:

    sa Detelinare (NS)
    sa Limana (NS)
    sa Zvezdare (BG)
    sa Banjice (BG)

    but:

    iz centra
    iz Petrovaradina (NS)
    iz Zemuna (BG)
    iz Sremčice (BG)

    I'm not so sure about Zagreb: I suppose, iz Sesveta, Velike Gorice, but sa Medveščaka, Trešnjevke?What about Novi Zagreb? (Novi Beograd is more common with sa).however:

    sa Manhattana (NY)
    iz (?) Bronxa (NY)
    iz (?) Brooklyna (NY)

    Total mess, isn't it? :eek:
     

    Athaulf

    Senior Member
    Croatian/Bosnia, Croatia
    Another toughie regarding "u"/"na" are city parts. The rule seems to be: if the city part/neighbourhood was once a town or village on its own, "u" should be used; otherwise, it should be "na". Exceptions seem to be numerous, though.
    Well, I guess u might also be used if the name is derived from some common noun that normally takes this preposition, although an example eludes me at the moment.

    I'm not so sure about Zagreb: I suppose, iz Sesveta, Velike Gorice, but sa Medveščaka, Trešnjevke?
    Yes.

    What about Novi Zagreb? (Novi Beograd is more common with sa)
    Interestingly, Novi Zagreb always takes iz, without exception. I've never heard *s novog Zagreba in my life, and it actually sounds ungrammatical to me. I didn't even know that s(a) Novog Beograda was a valid option.

    .however:

    sa Manhattana (NY)
    iz (?) Bronxa (NY)
    iz (?) Brooklyna (NY)

    Total mess, isn't it? :eek:
    Well, Manhattan is an island, so that's not so illogical (I'd definitely use iz for all other boroughs of NYC). Generally, untranslated foreign city parts normally take iz, unless there is an awareness that they represent an island or some other geographical structure that takes sa, or that its name translates into some domestic word that would take sa.

    In some cases, you can actually see whether people translate foreign city area names in their heads by their choice of prepositions, like for example with "East End".
     
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