Slovak: isť sa ….

Tisztul_A_Visztula

Senior Member
Hungarian
A new lesson means new questions:

“Idem sa do kuchyne raňajkovať: i checked both my dictionaries and some of my web resources and I concluded that “isť sa” as a verb does not exist and this construction is just about the magnetic field :) of the second word, so even if “sa” got closer to “idem” than to “raňajkovať”, actually we are speaking about raňajkovať sa,

My question is that is it really not possible to place “sa” other than as the 2nd word of the clause not even in this case?

Because in this case not the reflexive verb is the conjugated one, but another verb. So cannot I say “idem do kuchyne naraňajkovať sa”?
 
Last edited:
  • Enquiring Mind

    Senior Member
    English - the Queen's
    The reflexive particle "sa" doesn't go with "ist'". As you noted, the (imperfective) verb "to have breakfast" is (usually) raňajkovať. The perfective naraňajkovať sa ("to get breakfast eaten") is a reflexive. What seems to have happened, as you noted, is that an imperfective reflexive back formation raňajkovať sa has occurred, and my educated guess is that this is not really standard usage, but acceptable in colloquial style.

    Here's another example of the same phenomenon (imperfective raňajkovať sa as a reflexive) from a Slovak speaker's blog about his expedition to Annapurna:
    8. deň Thorong Phedi (...)
    Najnáročnejší deň pred nami, čaká nás nadmorská výška 5416 m n. m. Počasie býva dobré iba doobeda a preto všetci turisti štartujú už okolo piatej ráno. Podľa predpovede počasia je toto posledný použiteľný deň na prechod Thorong La Passom. Náš plán je vstať o 3:30, raňajkovať sa o 4:00 a odchádzať ideálne pred 5:00. (dennikn.sk)
    ... is it really not possible to place “sa” other than as the 2nd word of the clause ...?
    The reflexive particle "sa" always needs to be the second "element" (not necessarily "word") in the clause, no matter how further away in the clause its "main" (or "host") verb occurs. This is sometimes referred to as Wackernagel's law. To my (non-native) ear, "idem do kuchyne naraňajkovať sa” sounds clumsy and/or foreign.
     
    Last edited:

    numerator

    Senior Member
    Hungarian, Slovak
    I agree with everything said above, except that I find "raňajkovať sa" really unacceptable even in colloquial style. "Raňajkovať" - yes, "naraňajkovať sa" - yes. But "raňajkovať sa" must be a speech error or editing error. It really conjures up images of self-cannibalism :eek: Unless, of course, it's the impersonal usage of "sa", which was discussed in another thread: "Teraz sa raňajkuje" - Breakfast is eaten now.


    Constructions with a finite verb and infinitive(s) usually behave as a single clause and "sa" migrates all the way to the 2nd position in the front: "Môžeš sa ísť do kuchyne naraňajkovať", "Chcem sa tam skúsiť ísť pozrieť".

    But, thinking about it more, I find that sometimes they don't: "Odporučil som mu dobre sa naraňajkovať" sounds much better than :confused:"Odporučil som sa mu dobre naraňajkovať". I'm sure that linguists have analyzed the reasons for this thoroughly but I'm too lazy to look for a study :)
     

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    “Constructions with a finite verb and infinitive(s) usually behave as a single clause and "sa" migrates all the way to the 2nd position in the front:”

    It is what I wanted to hear/see.
    I will remember it as a general rule, and that’s what counts.


    Btw I made a mistake, I simply quoted “naranajkovať” as “ranajkovať” as an editing error, as it was supposed by Numerator, too.

    I am sorry that my error triggered an analysis in vain.
     

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    But, thinking about it more, I find that sometimes they don't: "Odporučil som mu dobre sa naraňajkovať" sounds much better than :confused:"Odporučil som sa mu dobre naraňajkovať". I'm sure that linguists have analyzed the reasons for this thoroughly but I'm too lazy to look for a study :)

    Maybe the reason is that odporučit has a reflexive version with “sa” and you second word order is a bit confusing. But I am just a real rookie. :)

    Btw when I learned Italian, and with the same technics, of course :) (grammar deeply and fast, vocabulary slowly), I was thinking a lot how many elements of the following can be used in the same sentences, preferably directly each after each:

    “Ci/vi” as particella locativa
    “Ne” as particella partitiva
    “Si” as impersonal usage
    “Si” as passive usage
    “Si” as pronomi riflessivi (reflexive usage)
    “Lo/la/li/le etc.” as pronomi diretti
    “Mi, ti, gli, le etc” as pronomi indiretti

    Moreover the combined usage of those may change the form of some of them like “ce le” or “me ne”.

    As far as i remember I could create a sentence (a meaningful, but artificial one, ) which included 4 or 5 from the 7.
     
    Last edited:

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Let me copy here your opinion from another thread which I found just now as something which may underpin my above bet:

    with the consequence that the meaning can be ambiguous:
    To sa dá ľahko naučiť. (dá sa + naučiť sa or dá sa + naučiť) That can be easily learnt (or: taught).
     

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    The reflexive particle "sa" always needs to be the second "element" (not necessarily "word") in the clause, no matter how further away in the clause its "main" (or "host") verb occurs.
    I guess I found an example which contradicts to the previous rule:

    “Zabudol si, že som ti zakázal kúpať sa v rieke?”

    Is this sentence incorrect, or did you just forget to mention that in case of a “pronoun-jam” there may be other solutions, too?
     

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    I thought it is the same case. You can interpret “Idem do kuchyne naraňajkovať sa” as “Idem do kuchyne prečo? “Naraňajkovať sa.”

    So the second is an adverbial clause of purpose.

    But it was said that “sa” should be put directly after “idem”, so one is not allowed to interpret this sentence as sum of 2 clauses, while at the same time the other sentence can be interpreted as sum of 2 clauses?

    Or is it allowed only in case of some clauses like object clause?
    EDIT: In the meantime I modified raňajkovať sa to naraňajkovať sa to show that I wanna get a good mark here. :)
     
    Last edited:

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Sure it is not an object clause, but there are another types of clauses, in this case the closest bet is “adverb(ial) clause of purpose” see eg how English grammar regards the simple “to + infinitive”:
    Clause of purpose | Learn English

    But it can be that in Slovak the infinitive with a meaning of purpose is not regarded a clause, just an adverb of purpose…..
     

    numerator

    Senior Member
    Hungarian, Slovak
    Just a reminder, "raňajkovať sa" is not correct (unless you are eating yourself)! So let's replace it everywhere in #10 and #11 by "naraňajkovať sa".

    Constructions with infinitives sometimes behave like separate clauses in Slovak and sometimes they don't. I'm sure there must exist a linguistic analysis of this but I'm not aware of it.

    As for me, "Zabudol si, že som sa ti zakázal kúpať v rieke?" sounds pretty acceptable too, but "... že som ti zakázal kúpať sa..." is better. (See the example at the end of my post #3, where the "moved" variant sounds even worse.)

    I'm not quite sure why it works differently from "Idem sa naraňajkovať."

    My feeling is that it has do with the two verbs (zakázať and kúpať sa) having different subjects in this case.
    [EDIT: or it could indeed have to do with a distinction between (infinitival) object clauses and clauses of purpose...]
     

    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    You are developing, Numerator, if I may say so, since last time you had no explanation for that, but this time I am almost sure you got the point. Different subjects, I mean.

    Which has a lot to do with a difference between an object clause and a clause of “something else”, purpose/cause/ place/time etc. So Enquiring Mind also got the point from a different angle.
     
    Top