Czech (čeština or český jazyk) is a West Slavic language with approximately 12 million speakers in the Czech Republic and its neighbouring countries (mainly Slovakia and Austria). It is one of the oldest European cultural languages. The Czech Republic experienced its heyday between the 13th and 16th centuries. In that period, the country and language had a strong degree of uniformity and stability. It ended in 1620 with the subjugation to the Habsburg Empire. German and Latin became the dominant languages.
When the interest in Czech started growing again toward the end of the 18th century, a problem arose. The old Czech had developed in various directions and had since been strongly influenced by other languages. Creating a new, standard Czech from that was easier said than done. In part due to the efforts of historian Josef Dobrovský and the poet and linguist Josef Jungmann, a final form of new Czech, supplemented with loan words from other Slavic languages (mainly Russian and Polish), was born.
Czech is written in the Latin alphabet, supplemented by a large number of specific letters that appear in Slavic languages more often. We want to discuss one of those letters, the Ů. This U with corona (kroužek: ˚) only occurs in Czech (in the past, Lithuanian also contained this letter). We also want to give you the following Czech sentence: ‘Strč prst skrz krk’, which more or less means ‘stick your finger down your throat’. This sentence appears to contain no vowels. However, in Czech, the letters L and R can also function as vowels. If you have mastered the four cases of German, you can move on to Czech, it has 7.
We like working with Czech translators who live in the Czech Republic and speak Czech as their native language, so-called in-country translators. After all, such translators have an optimal feel for their language and culture. Because besides language, culture is also an essential part of the way in which people express themselves. In-country translators have their language and culture around them every day, and are best able to have the translation connect to the intended target audience.
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