Czech courses - a comment not a criticism

When I started learning Czech on Memrise I just plumped for the first course on the top of the list. After a week or so I found the length of the course I'd chosen dispiriting as it never seemed to come to an end. I then looked down the list and picked out courses with the fewest amount of words. I've found these suit me best, as I get a sense of achievement when I can harvest words and finish a course within (to me) a reasonable amount of time. This may say more about me than the courses and is not meant as a criticism, just a comment.

I have found Memrise a huge help in my Czech learning and thanks to you both, Doralina and Mangodurian, for all the work you’ve put in.

Posted by Fronika 4/29/12, last update 5/16/12 (2 years ago)
  • Dear Fronika, you have to thank Mango much more, I just started to add some words or courses a few weeks ago! I understand your point, but on the other hand - if you have very slow connections (and memrise is not the fastest site I know as well ...) I like it to have more words in one course - so I can water them all in a bundle and do not have to wait and wait and wait ... On the other hand I started with all the shorter courses as well (who doesn´t like to have a quick success ...) - but it is difficult to continue the "lessons" - as probably there are special books behind that. But I could try with mine ...

    Posted by doralina 4/29/12 (2 years ago)
  • Hi Doralina, it's probably because I'm so new I like to feel I'm getting somewhere quickly. I'll just have to "man-up" and face the long haul. :)

    I don't know if it would be of interest to you, but I found the words of "Holka modrooka" written out online.

    http://www.karaoke-lyrics.net/lyrics/platnum/holka-modrooka-228720

    A funny thing, my Czech friend hates the word holka for a girl. He thinks it's vulgar. He says divka is far better.

    Posted by Fronika 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • I had the words from a karaoke-site, unfortunately the mistakes as well;-) My Czech teacher says the same: holka really seems to bee vulgar, but if the song is like this?;-)

    Posted by doralina 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • Yes, it is very strange to use a supposed vulgar word in a song for little children! Perhaps holka is not a bad word in the Prague area? My friend is from Moravia and has a very low opinion of the Prague accent and their use of Czech in general. :)

    Posted by Fronika 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • Doralina, if you look at this link you will see why holka is not an ideal word for girl. As for the song, I think it must a folk song from long ago when "wench" was not an insulting word as it is now.

    http://www.eudict.com/?lang=czeeng&word;=prostitutka, lehká holka, děvka, šlapka, coura

    Posted by Fronika 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • I've never heard that holka is a vulgar word. It is commonly used in the Czech Republic for girl. I've asked around my Czech friends and they confirm this. Holka is used in the song because it rhymes. Holka is a synonym for dívka. The diminutive is holčička which is really sweet. See http://www.slovnik-synonym.cz/web.php/hledat?typ_hledani=prefix&cizi;_slovo=holka. I live in near Brno in Moravia.

    Posted by predrup 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • Also I was taught this song when studying Czech at Masaryk University. They use it to improve the students’ pronunciation. It is a good one to learn. It is also taught in schools in the Czech Republic.

    Posted by predrup 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • I see. Strange then that Doralina and I have both been told the same thing by two different people.

    Posted by Fronika 4/30/12 (2 years ago)
  • well as Czech native and bookworm I can confirm holka is not vulgar, but rather informal. It used to be more often used word in past, but we still use the plural form "holky" a lot. I think the "vulgar" touch to it comes from using the word to refer about lower educated (often village) girls (holka z vesnice = girl from village) while higher educated girls (living in towns and usually from richer families) were reffered to as "dívka" or "slečna" even "slečinka" in past (careful about using them in modern czech - slečna is neutral and usually used for young and not married girl, slečinka is usually used as a mild bad calling suggesting the girl is spoiled) . Another reason might be connection "lehká holka" which is one of terms for prostitute. But many older people still use it without negative meaning and I guess it is question of local dialect, intonation and context as well. as for question of Prague accent it is definitely not the worst one in CZ after all the official Czech language comes from central Bohemia, but that would be for a long discussion.. Being Czech native speaker but neither from Prague nor from Moravia I find it rather amusing..

    Posted by Minuska 5/11/12 (2 years ago)
  • That's interesting to know. Thanks Minuska.

    Posted by Fronika 5/16/12 (2 years ago)

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