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Thread: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

  1. #21
    Почтенный гражданин bitpicker's Avatar
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    Re: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

    Wow, that's a quite impressive. If you'd like to talk in German again, anytime!

    Robin
    Спасибо за исправления!

    Вам нравится этот форум, и вы изучаете немецкий язык? Вот похожий форум о немецком языке.

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    Re: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

    First thing that I noticed about Russian was how similar it was to Latin, which was actually the first language I studied. Spanish I feel is more modernized in a lot of ways that English is, and it seems that there are not so many words to learn in order to understand it.. although I could be fooled by Spanish's similarity to English as concerns word forms (car = carro, etc.) .. Russian and Latin I think are very cool because the word order is not so important and there's a lot of poetic freedom.. By far my favorite thing about Russian over Latin is that you can see and hear a lot of it in use, and it can become more natural to use.. Latin, no matter how well I learned the forms, was always kind of like a form of mathematics, like a formula that needed to be simplified to something understandable.. But the freedom of word placement in sentence structure makes both languages beautiful in my opinion... I mean no offense to anyone but I detest listening to spoken Spanish... and I love the sound of Russian (also Latin and Greek) when spoken...

    Maybe I'm overstating but even as a native speaker, I think English is painfully limited, compared to these wizened and venerable tongues..
    EDIT: To support that last part - in learning Russian I keep running into different words in Russian that have separate and subtle meanings, but translate into the same thing in English... Russian can be so subtle in meaning and intent - it seems to me - and to do the same in English you have to get complicated, similes, metaphors, double entendres, and so on.. Slang seems to make up for it ("Did you fight him?" "No - I wailed on him, I took him to the cleaner's, I wiped the mat with him, I left his ears ringing, I knocked the stuffing out of him, I schooled him, I powned him" - any shade of colloquiae you want )
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  3. #23
    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    Re: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

    Quote Originally Posted by Оля
    Quote Originally Posted by Johanna
    I've noticed that almost everyone who studied it automatically say "but I wasn't very good at it!".
    I was.

    I've never even had any "B" at it. Always only "A".
    Молодец!

    I took four years of Latin in high school, as follows:
    First year: Introductory Grammar and Vocabulary Acquisition -- all A's
    Second year: Even More Grammar, plus reading Caesar's De bello gallico -- all A's
    Third year: Cicero's In Catilinam -- C's and B's :fool" (Cicero bored the f*ck out of me, and I didn't try very hard)
    Fourth year: Virgil's Aeneid -- all A's

    I've long since forgotten 95% of the Latin vocabulary that I once knew, but I still remember a lot of the grammatical principles. And the years studying Latin gave me a big advantage over most of my classmates when I began studying Russian in college. First, because I was already thoroughly accustomed to the idea of incredibly complicated word-inflections; second, because some of the grammatical terms that my Russian textbooks used were ones I'd already been exposed to in Latin (nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, locative); third, once I'd been studying Russian for a couple years and had learned a lot of Slavic roots, I found it easy to memorize new Russian words that had been calqued from Latin: зависимость, сосредиточить, великодушный, etc.
    Говорит Бегемот: "Dear citizens of MR -- please correct my Russian mistakes!"

  4. #24
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    Re: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

    Russian gives me the same warm feeling that Latin does (Johanna: I've studied Latin, and, like Оля, was very good at it. ) and for that reason I tend to think of them as being cut from the same cloth, though really they are not.

    Certainly, the vocabulary tends to be very different. If you are a well-read native English speaker, then Latin vocabulary comes easier and naturally; with Russian, there's an awful lot you have to learn from scratch. Likewise with the grammar: Latin doesn't have aspect (though Ancient Greek does- ужас!), which is the hardest thing for me, at least, to grasp about Russian (happily ignoring, for now, the verbs of motion). On the other hand, there are the conjugation system, the case system, the three genders and less restricted word order, which you highlight. To a native English speaker (in whose language these are mostly absent), Russian and Latin grammars seem similar (ie. equally fiendish).

    However, one thing that still puzzles me about Russian (and I've been learning it for about 14 months now), is, how on earth do Russian natives manage without the pluperfect / past perfect tense? The Latin tense system, to an English speaker, is simplicity itself.

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    Re: Slavic Languages Closer in Grammar to Latin??

    Quote Originally Posted by kidkboom
    I mean no offense to anyone but I detest listening to spoken Spanish... and I love the sound of Russian (also Latin and Greek) when spoken...
    I'm right with you on this one! I have never understood why people feel Italian and Spanish are so beautiful. The only Romance languages that I think sound good are French and Romanian, with French sounding nothing like any of the other Romance language and Romanian being influenced by the Slavic languages. In my opinion, French is the best sounding Romance language, but I am not sure if I find it the most beautiful language. That guttural 'r' kind of kills the beauty of the language. Although I do find that 'r' cool and interesting!

  6. #26
    Властелин
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    Slavic languages and Latin

    It was discussed long ago. I can talk about that because I know Latin and Russian is my native language. Old Russian as well as Serbian for example had more past tenses, it had Vocative case, the verbe 'to be' in Present. The Past tense was formed by the verb 'to be' in the Present + Past Participle - дал есмь, дал еси, дал есть and so on. So it was closer to Latin than the modern language.

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