Slovak: 'To je...' OR 'Je to...'

lafz_puchnevala

Senior Member
Tamil
Hi,
I am curious to know how to say 'It is...' in Slovak. From an English to Slovak translation it looks like 'To je...' makes sense but quite a few texts start with 'je to...'. Egs. Je to pekná žena a malé dieťa. Je to šteňa. Would they be interchangeable?
Cheers
 
  • Enquiring Mind

    Senior Member
    English - the Queen's
    Hi lafz puchnevala, word order in Slovak is freer than in English. "To je ..." and "Je to ..." are both possible in context. "To je" is the standard "first-mention" way of saying "This is XYZ ..". When XYZ is already "known" - for example she ("Je to pekná žena") has already been referred to, or we've seen a picture, then "je to ..." is more likely. Why? Because the emphasis or "new information" in that utterance is not on identifying the subject/person (here "this"), but on what the subject/person is (here "good-looking").
    ... quite a few texts start with 'je to...'.
    Hmm, not sure about that. If a sentence starts with "Je to" (and it's not a question), I'd expect the person or thing to have already been referred to.
     
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