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Interesting. I know very little about the Czech language, except that the English words "pistol" and "robot" originally come from Czech. "Robota" literally meaning servitude.

Czech grammar seems remarkably similar to Latin. (They are of course, distantly related languages, but no more than say, Greek and Spanish.) In Latin there are five conjugations for verbs (though some people lump the fifth conjugation in with the third).

In Latin also, there are 14 forms for a noun; seven singular and seven plural. (Though the locative singular and plural might as well not exist: with very few exceptions it's the same as the ablative. So Latin is often taught as having six singular and six plural forms for nouns.)

And again in Latin, word order does not matter very much, only serving to add emphasis to particular parts of the sentence.

In English, word order can also be flexible. While we tend to think of subject-verb-object (SVO) being the standard, other word orders are often used.

  • OVS: "Help," said the man.
  • OSV: There you are!
  • VSO tends to turn a statement into a question: Are you there?

I think your definition of idiom is different to mine. I'm referring to phrases like "this is a piece of cake" where the native English speaker will understand it to mean that "this task is very easy" whereas somebody learning English might actually assume the task involves cake.

Similarly, a native English speaker might describe an easy task as "like falling off a log", while a non-native might assume that it means the task is very painful.

perl -E'sub Monkey::do{say$_,for@_,do{($monkey=[caller(0)]->[3])=~s{::}{ }and$monkey}}"Monkey say"->Monkey::do'

In reply to Re^5: thoughts on perl language by tobyink
in thread thoughts on perl language by Anonymous Monk

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