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Advanced Czech Words

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Congratulations! You’ve worked your way up to an advanced level of the beautiful Czech language. 

You’ve mastered the past, present, and future tenses. You can have a pretty comprehensive conversation about almost anything and write long paragraphs. You can probably watch some movies and TV shows in Czech, and talk about various topics without getting sweaty. Your level is somewhere around B1, and your vocabulary comes up to a whopping 2500 words or so. 

In this article, you’ll expand your vocab even more with advanced Czech words. Beware though. It is very easy (and common) to get complacent, think you’ve “seen it all,” and stop working on your skills. I am a living example of how fast laziness can throw you back to “square intermediate,” a.k.a. using 1000 words over and over again. Please, don’t be like me. Maintenance is hard, but it pays off––this is just as true for gaining knowledge as it is for losing weight or any other difficult task. Five to fifteen minutes a day is enough, and you’ll be amazed by the results. (Have you seen our awesome Vocab Builder?)

Now, buckle up and get ready to learn over 200 advanced Czech words.

A Man Holding a Finger to His Chin while Thinking Deeply

“What’s the best synonym for…?”

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. Let’s Get Scholastic: Advanced Czech Academic Vocabulary
  2. You Better Mean Business: Advanced Czech Business Vocabulary
  3. When “Are You OK?” Isn’t Enough: Advanced Czech Medical Vocabulary
  4. When Your Lawyer isn’t Picking Up: Advanced Czech Legal Vocabulary
  5. When You Want to Sound Creative: Advanced Czech Synonyms
  6. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. Let’s Get Scholastic: Advanced Czech Academic Vocabulary

The first set of advanced Czech vocabulary we’ll cover comprises words you would hear or use in academic settings. These words will help you out if you plan to study in the Czech Republic, and they’ll give your conversations a sophisticated edge. 

CzechEnglishPart of SpeechExample
hodnoceníevaluationnounTo nebude předmětem finančního hodnocení.“
That won’t be a subject of financial evaluation.”
kontroverznícontroversialadjectiveJe to kontroverzní téma. 
“That’s a controversial topic.”
ambivalentníambivalentadjectiveJejich názory jsou dost ambivalentní. 
“Their opinions are quite ambivalent.”
obskurníobscureadjectiveTen horor byl obskurní a děsivý. 
“The horror movie was obscure and creepy.”
poučnýinstructive/informativeadjectiveJeho přednáška byla velmi poučná. 
“His talk was very informative.”
zkoumatto study/to examineverbVědci zkoumají vedlejší účinky vakcíny. 
“Scientists are examining side effects of the vaccine.”
dodržetto adhere/to comply withverbNedodržel své závazky. 
“He didn’t comply with his obligations.” 
objevitto discoververbObjevil temnou stránku svého daru. 
“He discovered the dark side of his gift.”
dospět ke stanoviskuto conclude/to come to an opinionverbParlament má dostatek času dospět k nějakému stanovisku. 
“Parliament has enough time to come to an opinion.”
posouditto considerverbTo je něco, co musíme v budoucnu posoudit.  
“That is something that we need to consider in the future.”
vyhodnotitto deduceverbSnažím se vyhodnotit funkčnost. 
“I’m trying to deduce the functionality.”
optimálníoptimaladjectiveUmožňuje optimální podmínky bezpečnosti. 
“It allows optimal safety conditions.”
ohledněregardingadverbKontaktuji vás ohledně vaší dcery. 
“I am getting in touch regarding your daughter.”
provéstto carry outverbProvedli operaci. 
“They carried out a surgery.”
odhadestimatenounJeho odhad ceny byl správný. 
“His price estimate was correct.”
názoropinionnounMá divné názory. 
“She has strange views.”
výsledekresultnounVýsledek testu najdete online. 
“The test result can be found online.”
následekconsequencenounNásledky si ponese sám
“He will have to deal with the consequences himself.”
důsledekconsequencenounVětšina lidí takové důsledky neunese. 
“Most people can’t bear such consequences.”
studiestudynounPodle nejnovější studie jablka nejsou zdravá. 
“According to the latest study, apples aren’t healthy.”
výzkumresearchnounKdy konečně dokončí výzkum? 
“When will he finally wrap up his research?”
závěrconclusionnounJak jsi k tomu závěru dospěl? 
“How did you come to that conclusion?”
abstraktabstractnounMěl moc dobře napsaný abstrakt. 
“His abstract was very well written.”
anotaceannotationnounPotřeboval popis systému anotace stran. 
“He needed a description of the system for the annotation of pages.”
vyplývat to ariseverbPro naši skupinu z toho nemůže vyplývat dodatečné zvýhodnění. 
“It’s not permissible for a supplementary advantage to arise for our group.”
obecně řečenogenerally speakingadverbObecně řečeno, ženy mají menší nohy. 
“Generally speaking, women have smaller feet.”
hierarchiehierarchynounHierarchie zjišťování reálné hodnoty
“Fair value hierarchy of assets”
pobytresidencynounMá tu trvalý pobyt. 
“He has residency here.” / “He’s a resident here.”

Two Women Gossipping about a Third Woman

Jsem kontroverzní osobnost, všichni o mně šíří drby. – “I am a controversial person; everyone is gossiping about me.”

2. You Better Mean Business: Advanced Czech Business Vocabulary

If you’re planning to work in the Czech Republic or if you have business matters to attend to here, it’s crucial to learn advanced Czech terms related to business. You’ll find the basics here, but you can head over to our business phrases article or this vocab list to pick up even more essential vocabulary. 

CzechEnglishPart of SpeechExample
organizovatorganizeverbOrganizovala mu život, jako by byl její dítě. 
“She organized his life as if he were her child.”
fiskálnífiscaladjectiveMají podivné fiskální zásady. 
“Their fiscal principles are strange.”
strategiestrategynounMá skvělou strategii prodeje.
“He has an awesome sales strategy.”
rozšířitto expandverbRozšířili si povědomí. 
“They expanded their consciousness.”
klauzuleclause/articlenounJe to popsané v první klauzuli. 
“It’s described in the first article.”
neplatnýnull and voidadjectiveTa smlouva je od začátku neplatná, protože obžalovaný neměl povolení ji podepsat jejím jménem. 
“The agreement is null and void because the defendant wasn’t authorized to sign it on her behalf.”
uzávěrkadeadlinenounTenhle týden mám dvě uzávěrky. 
“I have two deadlines this week.”
konkurentcompetitornounJe to pěkně tvrdý konkurent. 
“He is a tough competitor.”
fakturainvoicenounJdu jim poslat novou fakturu. “I’m going to send them a new invoice.”
zálohaadvance/depositnounPožádali nás o zálohu. 
“They asked us for a deposit.”
výplatapayoutnounVýplata jeho dědictví proběhla včera. 
“The payout of his inheritance was carried out yesterday.”
odepsatto write offverbKoupím si telefon a odepíšu ho z daní. 
“I’ll buy a phone and write it off.”
ochranná známkatrademarknounNa fotce je ochranná známka společnosti. 
“There’s the company’s trademark in the picture.”
shodacompliancenounShoda s těmito požadavky je nezbytná. 
“Compliance with these requirements is necessary.”
vztahy s veřejností/PRPublic RelationsnounVztahy s veřejností řídí jeho žena. 
“His wife manages his PR.”
program/plánschedulenounMáme nabitý program. 
“Our schedule is jammed.”
vizuályvisualsnounPodle vizuálů jsme vybrali nový projekt. 
“We picked a new project based on visuals.”
pobočkabranchnounOtevíráme další pobočku. 
“We’re opening another branch.”
franšízafranchisenounTa franšíza je pro podnik důležitá. 
“The franchise is very important for the company.”
povoleníauthorizationnounRaději byste měl mít oficiální povolení pro zatčení. 
“You better have official authorization to make an arrest.”
dress codedress codenounMáte v práci dress code? 
“Do you have a dress code at work?”
zárukawarrantynounNa počítač se vztahuje záruka. 
“There is a warranty on the computer.”
pověřený/autorizovanýauthorizedadjectiveKdo je pověřenou osobou? 
“Who is the authorized personnel?”
pokutafinenounDostal pokutu. 
“He got a fine.”
penálepenaltynounZaplatí vysoké penále. 
“They are going to pay a huge penalty.”
propagacepromotionnounPropagace toho produktu selhala. 
“The promotion of the product failed.”
dohoda/smlouvaagreementnounPodepíšeme smlouvu. 
“We’ll sign an agreement.”
smlouva o mlčenlivostiNDAnounPodepsal smlouvu o mlčenlivosti, aby tam mohl pracovat
“He signed an NDA in order to work there.”
nabídkaoffernounTo je lákavá pracovní nabídka. 
“It is a great job offer.”
poptávkademandnounPoptávku určuje vkus zákazníka. 
“Demand is determined by the customer’s taste.”
protinabídkacounteroffernounJejich protinabídka byla nízká. 
“Their counteroffer was too low.” 

A Handshake

Podepíšeme smlouvu. – “We will sign an agreement.”

3. When “Are You OK?” Isn’t Enough: Advanced Czech Medical Vocabulary

Getting ready to study medicine or land a job in the medical field? Maybe you’re not so lucky, and you’re sitting in the ER waiting for a doctor. Whatever the case, these advanced Czech words will help you out in a pinch. 

CzechEnglishPart of SpeechExample
biopsiebiopsynounVýsledky biopsie byly abnormální. 
“The biopsy results were abnormal.”
demencedementianounJeho babička trpí demencí. 
“His grandma has dementia.”
abnormálníabnormaladjectiveJeho symptomy byly abnormální. 
“His symptoms were abnormal.”
akutníacuteadjectiveMá akutní zánět. 
“He has an acute infection.”
chronickýchronicadjectiveJeho onemocnění je chronické. 
“His condition is chronic.”
vzorek močiurine samplenounPožádali pacienta o vzorek moči. 
“They asked the patient for a urine sample.”
vyšetřenítestnounLékař provedl pár vyšetření. 
“The doctor ran a few tests.”
zdravotní prohlídkamedical examinationcompound nounObjednal se na prohlídku
“He made a medical examination appointment.”
být v bezvědomíto be unconsciousverbPo pádu byla v bezvědomí
“She was unconscious after the fall.”
stabilnístableadjectiveJeho stav je stabilní. 
“He is stable.”
ztráta paměti/amnézieamnesianounPo nehodě trpí amnézií
“She suffers from amnesia after the accident.”
amputaceamputationnounAmputace jeho nohy byla nevyhnutelná
“It was necessary to amputate his leg.”
anémie/chudokrevnostanemianounChudé děti trpěly anémií. 
“Poor children suffer from anemia.”
artritida/revmaarthritisnounRakovina tě může zabít, ale když se podíváte na čísla, artritida ničí více životů. 
“Cancer may kill you, but when you look at the numbers, arthritis ruins more lives.”
ultrazvukultrasoundnounMůžeš naplánovat další ultrazvuk na příští týden? 
“Can you schedule another ultrasound for next week?”
astmaasthmanounNekouří, má astma
“He doesn’t smoke; he has asthma.”
pupeční šňůraumbilical cordcompound nounTatínek přestřihl pupeční šňůru
“The daddy cut the umbilical cord.”
bakteriebacterianounAkné způsobují bakterie. 
“Acne is caused by bacteria.”
malignímalignantadjectiveJeho nádor byl maligní. 
“His tumor was malignant.”
benigníbenignadjectiveJejí nádor byl benigní
“Her tumor was benign.”
proleženinabedsorenounPodložky předchází tvorbě proleženin
“Pads prevent the formation of bedsores.”
rentgenx-raynounProvedli rentgen plic. 
“They did a chest x-ray.”
invalidní vozíkwheelchairnounNemůže chodit, je na vozíku
“He can’t walk; he’s in a wheelchair.”
odděleníwardnounNa kterém leží oddělení? 
“Which ward is he in?”
návštěvní dobavisiting hourscompound nounKdy jsou v nemocnici návštěvní hodiny? 
“What are the visiting hours at the hospital?”
specialista/odborný lékařspecialistnounJe specialista na ORL. 
“He is an ENT specialist.”
záchvatseizurenounMá epilepsii, často mívá záchvaty
“He has epilepsy; he often has seizures.”
JIP, Jednotka intenzivní péčeICUcompound nounJejí stav se zhoršil, je na JIP. 
“Her condition worsened; she’s in an ICU.”
ránawoundnounUhodila ho lahví, rána hodně krvácela. 
“She hit him with a bottle; the wound bled badly.”
řezincisionnounPo řezu použijeme rozpínač tkáně
“After the incision, we use a tissue expander.”
vedlejší účinekside effectcompound nounVakcína má minimální vedlejší účinky. 
“The vaccine has minimal side effects.”

Don’t forget to memorize a few essential phrases in case you ever need medical assistance in the Czech Republic. Knowing what some of the most common conditions are called in Czech won’t hurt either.

A Woman Describing Her Symptoms to a Doctor

Jaké máte příznaky? – “What are your symptoms?”

4. When Your Lawyer isn’t Picking Up: Advanced Czech Legal Vocabulary

CzechEnglishPart of SpeechExample
odvoláníappealnounStanoví se vhodné postupy odvolání proti rozhodnutím. 
“Appropriate appeals procedures against decisions shall be provided for.”
zatčeníarrestnounPo přiznání následovalo zatčení. 
“The confession was followed by arrest.”
právníklawyernounPrávník – advokát, státní zástupce nebo obhájce – je profesionál, který radí a zastupuje druhé v právních záležitostech. 
“A lawyer—attorney, prosecutor, or counselor—is a licensed professional who advises and represents others in legal matters.”
advokátattorneynoun
státní zástupceprosecutornoun
odpovědnýliableadjectiveČlověk odpovědný za škodu vstal a vyslechl verdikt. 
“The person liable for the damage stood up and heard the verdict.”
verdiktverdictnoun
zatykačwarrantnounVydáme zatykač na oba zloděje
“We will issue a warrant for both of the thieves.”
svědekwitnessnounStala se korunním svědkem v případu vraždy a nejspíš něco ví i o tom únosu. 
“She became a material witness in the murder case, and she probably knows something about the kidnapping too.”
únoskidnappingnoun
paděláníforgerynounByl obviněn z finančního podvodu a taky mu hrozí dva roky za padělání peněz. 
“He was convicted of fraud, plus he’s facing a two-year sentence for money forgery.”
podvodfraudnoun
nedbalostnegligencenounJeho nedbalost ho přivedla k bankrotu
“His negligence led to bankruptcy.”
křivá přísahaperjurycompound nounKřivá přísaha je trestný čin
“Perjury is a criminal offense.”
krádež v obchoděshopliftingnounMajitel obchodu ji obvinil z krádeže. 
“The owner of the store accused her of shoplifting.”
vandalismusvandalismnounByl zatčen za vloupání, rabování a vandalismus. 
“He was arrested for breaking and entering, burglary, and vandalism.” 
vstup bez povolenítrespassingnounVstup bez povolení znamená vstup na cizí pozemek bez svolení majitele. 
“To trespass means to enter someone’s property without the owner’s permission.”
advokátadvocatenounTvůj advokát za tebe bude mluvit a reprezentovat tvé stanovisko, když to nezvládneš sám.
“Your advocate can speak for you and represent your views when you are unable to do so by yourself.”
pokutafinenounStrážník vypsal pokutu za překročení rychlosti. 
“The officer issued a fine for breaking the speed limit.”
obvinitto accuseverbManželka toho nevěrníka ho obvinila ze lži. 
“The cheater’s wife accused him of lying.”
nelegálníillegaladjectiveKaždý zločin je nelegální. 
“Every crime is illegal.”
vinnýguiltyadjectivePřiznal, že je vinný a omluvil se. 
“He pleaded guilty and apologized.” 
doznání vinyconfession/plead guiltycompound nounPachatel doznal vinu.
“The perpetrator confessed.”
nevinnýinnocentadjectivePrávník prokázal, že byl obžalovaný nevinný. 
“The lawyer proved that the defendant was innocent.”
obžalovanýdefendantnoun
přestupekmisdemeanornounPřestupek je zločin, který je obvykle trestán drobnou pokutou. 
“Misdemeanor is a crime usually punishable upon conviction by a small fine.”
podmínkaparolenounTen zločinec je v podmínce. 
“The criminal is on parole.”
přísahapleanounJeho právník vznáší námitku nepřípustnosti. 
“His attorney raises a plea of inadmissibility.”
žalobce/prokurátorprosecutornounPředvolání je úřední žádost vydaná obvykle na žádost federálního prokurátora. 
“A subpoena is an official request usually issued at the request of a prosecutor.”
předvolání/obsílkasubpoenanoun
soudní síňcourtroomnounSoudní síň je místo, kde soudce předsedá slyšením a přelíčením. 
“A courtroom is where a judge presides over hearings and trials.”
soudcejudgenoun
žalovatto sueverbŽalovala ho za porušení jejich smlouvy. 
“She sued him for breaching their agreement.”
svědčitto testifyverbMěla proti němu vypovídat, ale změnila své svědectví. 
“She was supposed to testify against him, but she changed her testimony.”
výpověď/svědectvítestimonynoun
trestní právocriminal lawcompound nounTrest smrti je v souladu s trestním právem této země zrušen. 
“The capital punishment is abolished according to the criminal law in this country.”
trest smrticapital punishmentcompound noun
obviněníchargenounUkradl jim auto a obvinili ho. 
“He stole their car, and they pressed charges.”
Civilní ztrátycollateral damagecompound nounZbývající oběti jsou v této kauze civilními ztrátami. 
“In this case, the remaining victims are collateral damage.”
kauzacasenoun
oběťvictimnoun
občanské právocivil lawcompound nounObčanské právo není trestní právo. 
“Civil law is a non-criminal law.”
usvědčeníconvictionnounPočet trestních stíhání a usvědčení je nízký. 
“The level of prosecutions and convictions is low.”
kaucebailnounZadržené osoby budou vyslyšeny bez práva na kauci nebo bez potřeby důkazů. 
“Persons apprehended shall be given a hearing without right of bail, without the necessity of evidence.”
důkazyevidencenoun
obhájcebarristernounObhájce jedná za obhajobu nebo na trestní stíhání. 
“A barrister is acting for the defense or the prosecution.”
nájemrentnounNechci platit hypotéku a půjčku, nájem je levnější. 
“I don’t want to pay a mortgage and loans; rent is cheaper.”
hypotékamortgagenoun
půjčkaloannoun
pronajímatellandlordnounPronajímatel a nájemník podepsali nájemní smlouvu. 
“The landlord and tenant signed a lease.”
nájemníktenant/proprietornoun
nájemní smlouvarental agreement/leasecompound noun

Close-up of a Gavel on a Desk, with a Judge Sitting in the Background

Proces byl zahájen. – “The trial has begun.”

You’ll find the essential legal terms here.

5. When You Want to Sound Creative: Advanced Czech Synonyms

Here are some advanced Czech words you can use as alternatives to their weaker counterparts. You’re welcome! 

CzechEnglishPart of SpeechExample
enormníenormousadjectiveMěl o ni enormní zájem. 
“His interest in her was enormous.”
tedythereforeadverbManželství je tedy rozvedeno. 
“Therefore, the marriage is terminated.”
v podstatěin essenceadverbV podstatě je to samotář. 
“He is in essence a very solitary person.”
lzemay be/can beadverbLze říci… 
“It can be concluded that…”
poněkudsomewhatadverbMožná to působí poněkud vágně. 
“It may appear to be somewhat vague.”
vágněvagueadverb
skrovněscantilyadverbByla skrovně oděná a její styl byl ordinérní. 
“She was scantily clad and her style was vulgar.”
nevalnýpooradjectiveOna má nevalný vkus na muže, všichni její chlapci byli zlodějíčci, kteří chodili domů jen zřídka. 
“She has a poor taste in men; all her boyfriends were infamous little thieves who rarely ever showed up at home.”
nechvalnýinfamousadjective
zřídkararelyadverb
nepatrněslightlyadverbJeho zdraví se nepatrně zlepšilo. 
“His health slightly improved.”
částečněpartiallyadverbČástečně s tím plánem souhlasím, ale příliš vysoké náklady mě znepokojují. 
“I partially agree with the schedule, but I find the too high expenses considerably alarming.”
značněconsiderablyadverb
přílištooadverb
náhlesuddenlyadverbNáhle prodal bezmála všechen majetek a pozvolna snížil svůj příjem. 
“Suddenly, he sold nearly all of his belongings, and he gradually decreased his income.”
bezmálanearlyadverb
pozvolnagraduallyadverb
téměřalmostadverbNavzdory obavám zvýšil prodej a zanedlouho vydělával téměř třikrát tolik co loni. 
“Despite his fear, he increased his sales, and before long, he was making almost triple as much as last year.”
zanedlouhobefore longadverb
navzdorydespiteadverb
záhysoon/shortlyadverb
neprodleněwithout delayadverbNeprodleně zaplatil všechny dluhy. 
“He paid off all of his debt without delay.”
nicméněnonethelessadverbZbohatl, nicméně štěstí mu to nepřineslo. 
“He got rich; nonetheless, it didn’t make him any happier.”
z toho důvodufor this reasonadverbNechápala ho a z toho důvodu se rozhodla odejít. 
“She didn’t understand him, and she left for this reason.”
neboťfor/becauseadverbTvoje sklenice nebude nikdy prázdná, neboť já budu tvým vínem. 
“Your cup will never be empty, for I will be your wine.”
opětonce againadverbOpět ji překvapil květinami. 
“He surprised her with flowers once again.”
přestoneverthelessadverbJeho četné avantýry ji mrzely, přesto ho milovala. 
“His frequent affairs were upsetting her; she loved him nevertheless.”
četnýfrequentadjective
početnýnumerous/largeadjectiveMěli početnou rodinu. 
“They had a large family.”
mohutnýmassive/mightyadjectivePřekvapila je mohutná vlna odporu. 
“They were surprised by a massive wave of resistance.”
rozsáhlývastadjectiveVlastní rozlehlý pozemek a ohromný dům. 
“He owns a vast property and an immense mansion.”
rozlehlýwide/vastadjective
ohromnýimmenseadjective
velkorysýmunificentadjectiveJe zámožný a výjimečně velkorysý. 
“He is wealthy and exceptionally munificent.”
zámožnýwealthy/prosperousadjective
závažnýsevere/majoradjectiveDůsledkem jejich opulentních večírků byly závažné finanční potíže. 
“The consequence of their opulent parties were major financial problems.”
opulentníopulentadjective
značnýsubstantialadjectiveJako politik má značný vliv na správu financí. 
“As a politician, he has a substantial influence on the finance management.”
signifikantnísignificantadjectivePočet nakažených byl signifikantní. 
“The number of infected people was significant.”
intenzivníintenseadjectiveLáska je intenzivní pocit. 
“Love is an intense feeling.”
charakteristickýcharacteristic/distinctive/signatureadjectiveCo je tvoje charakteristická vlastnost? 
“What’s your distinctive trait?”
vedlejšíminor/subsidiaryadjectiveJejí starosti jsou pro nás vedlejší. 
“Her worries are of a minor nature for us.”
extenzivníextensiveadjectiveProvedl extenzivní výzkum. 
“He conducted extensive research.”
usilovnýstrenuous/earnestadjectiveJeho usilovná snaha ji obtěžovala. 
“His earnest effort annoyed her.”
pronikavýpenetrating/piercing/pungentadjectiveOna má velmi pronikavé oči. 
“She has very piercing eyes.”
zanedbatelnýnegligibleadjectiveRiziko nákazy je zanedbatelné. 
“The risk of infection is negligible.”
triviálnítrivialadjectiveJe nudný, mluví jen o triviálních hloupostech. 
“He’s boring; he talks about trivial nonsense.”
banálníbanal/triteadjectiveJe to banální, ale taky mě to dojímá. 
“It’s trite but I find it touching, too.”
ordinérníobvious/vulgaradjectiveMá laciný a ordinérní vkus. 
“He has an ordinary and cheap style.”
fádníinsipidadjectiveTa barva je tak fádní, nenávidím zelené šaty. 
“That color is so insipid; I hate green dresses.”
vydatnýhearty/squareadjectiveMěla jsem vydatnou snídani. 
“I had a hearty breakfast.”
nepatrnýminusculeadjectiveJe to nepatrná chyba.  
“It is a minuscule error.”
irelevantníirrelevantadjectiveJeho stupidní poznámka je irelevantní. 
“His stupid comment is irrelevant.”
okrajovýmarginaladjectiveEfekt tohoto výběru je pouze okrajový. 
“The effect of this selection is only marginal.”
převratnýgroundbreakingadjectiveDostal převratný nápad. 
“He had a groundbreaking idea.”

6. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

Stop trying to learn Czech. Learn Czech. Get smarter tools, study smarter, and believe in yourself. The sky’s the limit!

I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new! In case this wasn’t enough for you, please check out our Basic Bootcamp—the very basic grammar and vocab in five compact lessons. 

If you’re taking your Czech studies seriously, you might grab a Czech grammar book or learn online (the latter of which is way more convenient). Learning a new skill has never been easier. Just grab your phone and get to work!

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech the better way—with us, you’ll make progress faster than you could imagine! 

What can you find here?

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Czech Negation: How to Say NO in the Czech Language

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Saying NO is important in many situations:

No, I don’t eat mussels.
No, I can’t help you.
No, I won’t marry you.

It’s equally important in Czech, of course. Czech grammar is quite simple and straightforward, and negatives are no exception.

If Czech negation were a guy/girl, you’d get slightly bored of them in the middle of your first date, and later you would describe them to your friend as simple, predictable, linear, and straightforward.

It will take you 15 seconds to master this topic, so go ahead and make plans for tonight. I’m not going to keep you for long.

Let’s learn about negation in the Czech language!

A Woman Holding Her Hands Out in Front of Her to Say No or Stop

Just…no.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. How to Make a Statement Negative in Czech
  2. Giving a Negative Answer
  3. Czech Negation Words and Phrases
  4. Double and Triple Negatives in Czech
  5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. How to Make a Statement Negative in Czech

I’ve already hinted at what Czech negation is like, and I promise it’s definitely one of the easiest bits of Czech grammar.

So how do you make a negative statement in Czech?

    Add the prefix NE- to a verb

Let’s look at some examples so that you know I’m not making this up:

StatementNegative Statement
Zítra jdu do školy. – “I’m going to school tomorrow.”Zítra nejdu do školy. – “I’m not going to school tomorrow.”
Máš ráda ovoce. – “I like fruit.”Nemáš ráda ovoce. – “I do not like fruit.”
Jsem nemocná. “I am sick.”Nejsem nemocná. – “I am not sick.”
Chce si číst. “He/She wants to read.”Nehce si číst. “He/She doesn’t want to read.”
Oni se učí česky. – “They are learning Czech.”Oni se neučí česky. – “They are not learning Czech.”

If you want to master Czech negation, you need to learn how to spell and conjugate Czech verbs properly. This list of the 50 most commonly used Czech verbs is a great start. If you’re short on time, pave your way to Czech basics with this list of 25 Czech verbs.

The Verb být (“to be”) in Negative Form

Být (“to be”) is the only exception in Czech negation, but 

  • only in the third person singular.

Let’s look at the conjugation:

PersonSingularNegative Singular
1stjsem – “am”nejsem – “am not”
2ndjsi – “are”nejsi – “are not”
3rdje – “is”není – “is not”

PersonPluralNegative Plural
1stjsme – “are”nejsme – “are not”
2ndjste – “are”nejste – “are not”
3rdjsou – “are”nejsou – “are not”

Apart from this little thing, it’s easy-peasy!

A Guy Leaning Back in His Chair with His Arms Stretched behind His Head

That was easy!

2. Giving a Negative Answer

As you can tell, negation in Czech is just as simple and straightforward as it gets—kind of like ordering your favorite meal at the restaurant where you’ve been a regular since 5th grade.

  1. Create a negative form of the respective verb.
  2. Put together a sentence according to the Czech word order rules.

And since one table is worth a million words…

QuestionNegative Answer
Mluvíš česky? – “Do you speak Czech?”Nemluvíš česky? – “Do you not speak Czech?”Ne, nemluvím Česky. – “No, I don’t speak Czech.”
Žije tvoje přítelkyně v Praze? – “Does your girlfriend live in Prague?”
Nežije tvoje přítelkyně v Praze? – “Doesn’t your girlfriend live in Prague?”
Ne, moje přítelkyně nežije v Praze. – “No, my girlfriend doesn’t live in Prague.”
Chcete si už objednat? – “Would you like to order?”
Nechcete si už objednat? – “Would you not like to order?”
Ne, nechceme si objednat. – “No, we are not ready to order.”
Máme dost vody? – “Do we have enough water?”
Nemáme dost vody? – “Do we not have enough water?”
Ne, nemáme dost vody. – “No, we don’t have enough water.”
Je tu wi-fi zdarma? – “Is the wifi free here?”
Není tu wi-fi zdarma? – “Isn’t the wifi free here?”
Ne, wi-fi tu není zdarma. – “No, the wifi isn’t free.”

There’s a slight difference between the negative and regular questions, though.

    When asking a negative question (very common in spoken Czech), you might be implying, assuming, making sure, or already know the answer.

For example: 

Nežije tvoje přítelkyně v Praze? – “Doesn’t your girlfriend live in Prague?”

This question could be followed by something like: “I thought I was seeing her in the park every weekend. I guess it’s not her.”

But if you genuinely have no idea where his girl lives, you would ask: 

Žije tvoje přítelkyně v Praze? – “Does your girlfriend live in Prague?” 

P.S.: If you’re lost, just shake your head.

A Guy Giving a Thumbs-down Sign

Czech negation is very simple.

When you need to be polite…

Saying no is quite simple. However, in most situations (such as at work, while talking to a friend, etc.), you might want to choose your words carefully so that you don’t come across as a heartless and crude monster with no manners.

Also, these are the phrases you should use when you feel like you have to/should say yes, but you want to set boundaries or suggest a different solution.

Let’s say someone you barely know asks you to do their work:

  • Je mi líto, ale nejde to. – “I am sorry, but it’s not possible/can’t be done.”
  • Omlouvám se, ale ne. – “I am sorry, but no.” (This one sounds quite funny in English, but it’s actually one of the most common negative answers in Czech. I mean, besides: Už ti nenaliju, jsi na plech. – I won’t get you another drink, you’re hammered.”)

Maybe you would love to help, but you’re late on your projects:

  • Promiň, mám moc práce, ale vím, kdo by ti mohl pomoct. – “I am sorry, I am busy, but I know who could help you.”

When someone invites you someplace, but you want to stay home with your cat and drink tea…

  • Nezlob se, mám jiný program. – “I am sorry, I have other plans.”

When you don’t want to break their heart:

  • Dneska nemůžu, můžeme jít jindy? – “I can’t today, can we go another time?”

When the person is really cute or the plans sound awesome and you genuinely want to do it:

  • To bych moc rád(a), ale dneska se mi to nehodí. Mám čas příští týden. – “I would love to, but I can’t today. I am free next week.”

When you just don’t know…

  • Já nevím, promiň. – “Sorry, I don’t know.”

When you want to be direct:

  • Nemůžu. – “I can’t.”
  • Nechci. – “I don’t want to.”
  • Ne, díky. – “No, thanks.”
  • Ani ne, díky. – “Not really, thanks.”

More on this topic here. Have fun!

A Snobby Woman Rejecting Someone

Nechci! – I don’t want to.

3. Czech Negation Words and Phrases

Here are a few more words and phrases you can use to make a sentence negative in Czech. 

  • ne – “no”
  • nikdy – “never” 
    • Nikdy sem nechodí. – “He never comes here.”
  • nikdo – “nobody” / “anyone” 
    • Nikdo je nemá rád. – “Nobody likes them.”
  • nikde – “nowhere” / “anywhere” 
    • Nikde jinde to nenajdeme. – “We won’t find it anywhere else.”
  • zádný/žádná/žádné (m/f/n) – “none” / “no” / “any” / “neither” 
    • Na stole nebyla žádná knížka. – “There wasn’t any book on the table.”
  • ani jeden – “not even a one” or “none of these” / “neither” 
    • Ani jeden z jejích bratrů nemá černé vlasy. – “None of her brothers has black hair.”
  • ani – “nor” / “not” 
    • Nikdo si nepamatuje moje narozeniny, dokonce ani moje máma. – “Nobody remembers my birthday, not even my mom.”
  • skoro vůbec – “barely” / “hardly” 
    • Konečně jsme spolu a ty skoro vůbec nemluvíš! – “We’re finally together and you’re barely speaking!”
  • už ne – “no longer” / “not anymore” 
    • Už nemá dost energie. – “He no longer has enough energy.” 
    • Q: Ty ji nechceš? A: Už ne. – Q: “Don’t you want her?” A: “Not anymore.”
  • vůbec – “at all” / “whatsoever” 
    • Nemám vůbec hlad. – “I’m not hungry at all.”

In case you’re in the mood for more negativity, check out our list of the top 21 words for negative emotions.

4. Double and Triple Negatives in Czech

You’ve probably noticed that the Czech language is pretty playful in nature, which means there’s always an extra spark even in the simplest of matters.

In the context of Czech negation, it’s double (and even triple) negatives.

Here’s the most important info about the difference between negation in English and Czech:

    It’s almost a rule to have a double or triple negative in Czech, although sentences with only one negative are not uncommon.

If you remember elementary school math, and you’re tempted to apply the “negative + negative = positive” rule here, just don’t.

Let’s look at examples of two or more Czech negatives resulting in a negative:

CzechEnglish
Už nikdy tam nepůjdeš!“You will never not go there again.” / “You won’t ever go there again.” 
Nemám vůbec nic.“I don’t have nothing at all.” / “I don’t have anything at all.”
Už nemá hlad.“She isn’t hungry anymore.”
Dneska jsme nikam nešli.“We didn’t go nowhere today.” / “We didn’t go anywhere today.”
Vůbec nic o tom neví.“He doesn’t know nothing at all about it.” / “He doesn’t know anything about it.”
Ani jeden žák tu knihu nečetl.“Not even one student didn’t read the book.” / “Not one student read the book.”
Nikdo tu není.“There isn’t nobody in here.” / “There is nobody in here.”
Nemám rád cestování, nikdy jsem nikde nebyl.“I don’t like traveling, I have never been nowhere.” / “I don’t like traveling, I have never been anywhere.”
V práci skoro vůbec nic nedělá.“He doesn’t do barely anything at work.” / “He does barely anything at work.”
Nic nechci.“I don’t want nothing.” / “I don’t want anything.”

Twin Brothers in Suits

Double and triple negatives result in a negative in the Czech language.

5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

That’s it, guys! I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new. You should now be ready to knock Czech negation out of the park!

I’m glad you chose Czech, and I hope you know that, in this wonderful era of advanced technology, learning languages is easy, effective, and can be done anywhere (= way less boring).

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you could imagine!

What can you find here?

Sign up now, it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you. Let’s get in touch!

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Czech Tenses: The Easiest Part of Czech Grammar

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Everybody gets a little tense when it comes to tenses. However, I have GREAT news for you. If you’re a native English speaker (or a native speaker of any Germanic language), you’ll find Czech tenses super-easy to learn and understand.

The (otherwise complicated) Czech language uses only three tenses: past, present, and future. That’s it.

You still have to be aware of grammatical gender, declension, and conjugation of course, but applying the tenses correctly is actually a breeze.

This is going to be short and sweet. Let’s learn about Czech verb tenses!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. The Present Tense in Czech
  2. The Past Tense in Czech
  3. The Future Tense in Czech
  4. Verb Conjugation and Auxiliary Verbs
  5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. The Present Tense in Czech

The rules for using the present tense in Czech are very simple.

Is it happening right now? Does it happen regularly? Then use the present tense.

    Přítomný čas (“present tense”) is used to describe ongoing actions.
    ➢ Grammatical gender, declension, and conjugation rules apply when using all tenses.
    ➢ The ending of the verb changes for every gender, person, and case.
    Minulý čas (“past tense”) is used to denote past actions without a time reference—actions that happened in the past and might happen in the future.

Before you decide whether it’s correct to use the present tense, you’ll need to figure out which conjugation type the verb falls under. 

You can simply memorize all the possible endings. I promise that, eventually, you’ll not only remember but also be able to “feel” what’s correct (I suggest you read a lot in Czech). In case your vocabulary needs a boost, check out our list of the 50 most commonly used verbs.

Verb endings:

PersonSingularPlural
1st (já / my) – “I” / “we”-u / -i / -m-eme / -íme / -áme
2nd (ty / vy) – “you” / “you”-eš / -íš / -áš-ete / -íte / -áte
3rd (on, ona, ono/oni) – “he, she, it/they”-e / -í / -á-ejí / -ějí / -í / -ou / -ají

Let’s look at some examples:

English TenseEnglishCzech
Present Simple“I brush my teeth twice a day.”
“Do you sew your own clothes?”
“I don’t sew my own clothes.”
“He doesn’t know about it.”
Čistím si zuby dvakrát denně.
Šij si svoje vlastní šaty?
Nešiju si svoje vlastní šaty.
Neví o tom.
Present Perfect“We have been to Italy several times.”
“I have seen it before.” (feminine)
Několikrát jsme byli v Itálii.Už jsem to viděla.
  • Exception: We need to use the past tense here, as explained above.
Present Continuous“You are sitting in my chair.”
“We aren’t doing anything right now.”
“We are reading an article.”
Sedíš na mojí židli.
My právě teď nic neděláme.
Čteme je článek.
Present Perfect Continuous“They have been living here since last year.”
“I have been reading the book for months now.”
“We have always been doing it this way.”
Bydlí tu od loňského roku.

Já tu knihu čtu už celé měsíce.

Vždycky to takhle děláme.

When to use přítomný čas in Czech (summary)

You use the přítomný čas when describing:

  1. Habitual or routine actions
  2. General (timeless) facts
  3. Actions that are happening right now
  4. Actions that started in the past and continue into the present (and may continue into the future)
A Couple of Girls Laughing

Holky se smějí. – “The girls are laughing.”

2. The Past Tense in Czech

    ➢ The past tense in Czech is formed with the past participle in the proper gender form combined with an auxiliary verb, which indicates the person and number of the verb’s subject with a past form of the main verb.
    ➢ It replaces every past tense in English.
    ➢ The most common ending is -l + -a/-o/-i/-y (feminine, neuter, and plural).
    ➢ There is no tense shifting in reported speech.

Examples:

English TenseEnglishCzech
Past Simple“He cooked dinner last night.”
“We arrived two days ago.”
“It didn’t happen like that!”
Včera večer uvařil večeři.
Přijeli jsme před dvěma dny.
Takhle se to nestalo!
Past Continuous“We were watching TV when it happened.”
“She was driving when he called her.”
“Her animals looked healthy and happy.”
Dívali jsme se na televizi, když se to stalo.
Řídila, když jí zavolal.
Její zvířata vypadala šťastně a zdravě.
Past Perfect“I didn’t watch the movie; I had seen it last week.” (feminine)
“The girls were hungry because they hadn’t eaten all day.”
Nedívala jsem se na film, viděla jsem ho minulý týden.
Holky měly hlad, protože celý den nic nejedly.
Reported Speech“He said he loved her.”
“She texted me that the report was ready.”
Řekl, že ji miluje.
Napsala mi, že je ta zpráva hotová.
  • Past simple + present simple

When to use minulý čas in Czech (summary)

You use minulý čas when describing:

  1. Actions that are finished
  2. Actions and situations finished in the past
  3. Finished actions that started in the past

This tense is also used in combination with the present simple in reported speech (řekl, že to udělá).

A Cake with a Slice Missing

Někdo snědl kus dortu! – “Someone ate a piece of cake!”

3. The Future Tense in Czech

The future tense in Czech is probably the trickiest one, but if you’re able to navigate through the maze of the 12 tenses in English (let’s not even mention French and its 17 tenses), this will be a piece of cake for you.

There are a few possible ways to form this Czech-language tense: 

  1. You can change the verb by modifying the stem and adding a prefix.
  2. For some verbs of motion, the future tense can be formed by adding po-/pů- to the present form of the verb.
  3. For imperfective verbs, we use být (“to be”) in the future tense, correct gender and person + the infinitive.

    ➢ It is possible to use the present simple or continuous when referring to scheduled actions and plans.

Examples:

English TenseEnglishCzech
Present Simple“It’s my birthday tomorrow.”
“We have a class on Thursday.”
Zítra mám narozeniny.
Ve čtvrtek máme hodinu.
Present Continuous“I’m swimming tomorrow morning.”
“They’re throwing a party next month.”
Zítra ráno jdu plavat.
Příští měsíc pořádají večírek.
Will“He will pick you up at six.”
“I will show you how to do it.”
“I will carry you, you can’t walk.”
Vyzvedne tě v šest.
Ukážu ti, jak se to dělá.
Ponesu tě, nemůžeš chodit.
Going to“It’s going to rain, the clouds are really dark.”
“I’m going to go, it’s late.”
Bude pršet, mraky jsou opravdu tmavé.
jdu, je pozdě.

When to use budoucí čas in Czech (summary)

  1. When expressing beliefs about the future
  2. When we want or are willing to do something
  3. Offers and promises
  4. When we’re dead-set on doing something—we’re going to do it
  5. Predictions based on evidence

A Man Proposing to a Woman

Budou se brát. – “They will be getting married.”

4. Verb Conjugation and Auxiliary Verbs 

The past and future tenses in Czech are formed using verbs that provide additional conjugations for other verbs, which is their only role in the sentence. They’re called pomocná slovesa, or “helping verbs.”

    In Czech, only the verb být (“to be”) is used as an auxiliary verb to form the past and future tenses.

Být – To Be – To Exist

This short and simple word, embellished by a special character called čárka, plays a very important role in the Czech language.

Let’s look at the many uses of být:

1.To beOna je krásná.“She is beautiful.”
2.To existV tom pokoji byla dvě okna.“There were two windows in that room.”
3.Auxiliary used to form the past tense with verbs in the past participle formŠla jsem domů.“I went home.”
4.Auxiliary used to form the future tense with verbs in the infinitiveBudu ti číst.“I will read to you.”
5.Auxiliary used to form the conditional mood with verbs in the past participle formNekupoval bych to.“I wouldn’t buy it.”
6.Auxiliary used to form the passive voice with verbs in the past participleByla překvapená.“She was surprised.”
7.Auxiliary used to form the conditional forms of verbs with past and passive participlesKdybych věděla, že jsi tu, počkala bych v autě.“Had I known you were here, I would have waited in the car.”

It’s important that you learn all of the forms for this word (a.k.a. conjugation). You pretty much wouldn’t be able to form any tense in Czech without it. I hope I didn’t scare you.

Present Conjugation

PersonSingular/Plural – CzechSingular/Plural – English
1st (já / my) – “I” / “we”jsem/jsmeam/are
2nd (ty / vy) – “you” / “you”jsi/jsteare/are
3rd (on, ona, ono/oni) – “he, she, it/they”je/jsouis/are

Past Participle

    When referring to a singular subject, you need to know the grammatical gender of the subject.

Masculine AnimateMasculine InanimateFeminineNeuter
Singularbylbylbylabylo
Pluralbylibylybylybyla

Future Tense

    In the future tense, být works like the English future auxiliary verb “will.”

Masculine AnimateMasculine InanimateFeminineNeuter
Singularbudebudebudebude
Pluralbudoubudoubudoubudou

1st Person2nd Person3rd person
Singularbudubudešbude
Pluralbudemebudetebudou

Conditional

    When forming the conditional, you’ll use the verb být the same way as “would” is used in English.

1st Person2nd Person3rd person
Singularbychbysby
Pluralbychombysteby

A Road with Arrows Pointing Straight Ahead

Start now!

5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

That’s it, guys! I hope you enjoyed this article on Czech verb tenses and learned something new!

If you’re taking your Czech studies seriously, you could grab a Czech grammar book or learn online (the latter of which is way more convenient).

CzechClass101.com makes learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you could imagine!

What can you find here?

Sign up now, it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you, and share your favorite learning tips. Let’s get in touch!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech

How Long Does it Take to Learn Czech?

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Learning a new language is kind of like losing or gaining weight: we want to see results ASAP. Even better—we want to see results now. Yesterday was too late.

That, my dear friend, won’t happen. Not even if you pull three all-nighters in a row in an attempt to learn 1000 new words in three days. Not even if you refuse to speak other languages and expose yourself to an ungodly amount of Czech TV and YouTube videos.

So how long does it take to learn Czech?

Let me put it this way: It depends on what your goal is.

Duh, obvi, right?

Do you want to be able to order the right food on the menu or ask about specific ingredients? (Very important if you have food allergies or an intolerance…or if you really, REALLY can’t stand mushrooms, and spotting them on your plate would ruin your whole trip to Prague.)

Do you just need to get by and understand some basic, everyday phrases? Is your biggest fear using the wrong tense or saying “Goodnight” at ten in the morning?

Are you actually taking this VERY seriously and want to become fluent? Sky’s the limit!

Finally, are there any tips and tricks on how to learn Czech faster?

That (and more) is the topic of this article!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. Beginner Level
  2. Intermediate Level
  3. Advanced Level
  4. Do You Want to Learn Czech Fast? Start Here.
  5. Learn Czech Faster: Practical Tips and Tricks
  6. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

Beginner Level

I know I’m going to sound super-annoying, but…there’s no straight answer to this (very frequently) asked question.

Think about it this way: How long did it take you to learn your mother tongue? You probably weren’t flaunting it within a couple of weeks, right? I’ve got great news for you, though: It’s not going to take years to learn Czech. And you can make the process fun by using the right methods and resources.

Read on.

A Woman Sitting at a Desk Thinking and Studying

The right learning method will speed up your progress.

Beginner Level: What Exactly Does That Mean?

  • You can ask a few basic questions, such as what time it is or where the restroom is located. 
  • You know how to greet people appropriately.
  • You can introduce yourself (your name, age, job, etc.).
  • You know how to use tenses. (Past, present, and future—see? This is MUCH easier than in English.)
  • Your vocabulary is limited, but you’re able to participate in conversations.
  • You typically make quite a lot of mistakes (and that’s okay, take them as an opportunity to learn and grow).
  • By international standards, this level is called A1 or A2.

How Many Hours Does it Take to Achieve a Beginner Level in Czech?

Generally speaking, you’re going to spend around 480 hours playing with flashcards, studying grammar, and memorizing vocabulary.

If you have the time and can treat yourself to full-time study, you will learn Czech in about 12 weeks.

A Woman with Mint-colored Headphones on Watching Something on Her Tablet

Use different learning techniques and don’t underestimate the power of Netflix and YouTube!

Intermediate Level

You should reach the intermediate level in about 720 hours or 24 weeks. However, if you’re not a complete beginner, you’ll probably make progress much faster. It all depends on your dedication. 

As a B1-B2 Czech speaker:

  • You understand the main topics of a conversation, given the vocabulary and grammar aren’t overly complicated or specific (and that you’re familiar with the topic).
  • Daily interactions in Czech are a breeze. You order food and engage in conversations about the weather, your family, hobbies, or work with ease.
  • You’re aware that it probably wouldn’t be the best idea to start writing your first novel in Czech, but you can compose an email just fine, even if it’s a work thing that has to sound professional.

Advanced Level 

This level will take around 44 weeks or 1100 hours to achieve. Whoa! This is C1-C2, guys!

At this level:

  • You’re pretty much fluent. You’re confident and use the language freely, without major errors.
  • Your vocabulary and grammar skills are strong.
  • You have complete control over the language.
A Man Holding Up an Aced Essay

Diligence is the mother of success!

Do You Want to Learn Czech Fast? Start Here.

How long it takes to learn Czech depends on a number of factors, such as your learning methods and your dedication. 

First of all, you should consider how much time you can allocate to studying Czech. Don’t push yourself too hard, and set realistic goals. Huge expectations might lead to disappointment. Remember: Slow and steady wins the race, and sometimes it’s better to relax instead of pushing harder.

Someone Checking Their Calendar and Schedule

Studying at the same time every day will help you make it a habit.

    Set realistic expectations. One hour a day is plenty.

What’s your motivation? Are you learning the language just for fun or do you have an actual goal that you want to reach? You know, motivation actually dries out, no matter how strong it is at first. Habits last forever.

    Make studying Czech a habit.

Set a reminder on your phone if needed. Train your language learning muscles. It’s all about your commitment, not your motivation.

English and Czech have literally nothing in common. Czech is a phonetic language—it’s pronounced the way it’s written. English is not. Also, Czech rules for word order are very loose and rely on context, voice, and declension. That brings us to…

    Do not compare English and Czech.

I’ve witnessed this many times, and I guess it’s pretty understandable, but also useless. When you’re learning Czech grammar or trying to pronounce a new word, forget that English even exists. Learn like little kids do—without bias or expectations.

    What’s your preferred way of learning?

Are you highly competitive or do you just enjoy company? Do you prefer to study early in the morning or at night? Your learning method will play an important role in your progress. Choose your favorite one, stick to it, and mix it up from time to time.

It would be a good idea to attend a class at least once a week (Zoom classes work too!), and use a free online resource daily—this could be an app or an online class. And no, you don’t have to travel all the way to the Czech Republic to learn the language. You can learn Czech online effectively and fast.

A Woman Lying in the Grass with a Book and Laptop, Studying

Are you a visual, auditory, or linguistic learner? The right learning method will help you make progress faster.

Learn Czech Faster: Practical Tips and Tricks

Tips for visual learners:

  • You’re a visual learner if you doodle while studying, you recall pictures and diagrams easily, and you often close your eyes and “visualize” information rather than trying to remember it.
  • Definitely use vocabulary flashcards and put pictures on them. I swear this works like magic. Trust me, you don’t have to be a graphic designer with a degree in Fine Arts to put together a decent-looking flashcard using an online tool. Use colors, fonts, and pics that work for you, spike your imagination, and are pleasing to look at (for you).
  • Pairing words with moving images or gestures works great, too. I highly recommend watching educational shows for kids – you’ll benefit from the colorful schemes and lots of pictures, as well as the simple vocabulary.

Tips for auditory learners:

  • If you like to repeat what you’ve just read or pick up new words from songs or podcasts without even trying, there’s a good chance you’re an auditory learner.
  • Don’t be afraid to talk to native speakers and participate in conversations as much as you can.

Tips for linguistic learners:

  • If you like to read, easily remember information you’ve seen on paper/screen, often take detailed notes, and perhaps like to write essays and other assignments, you might be a linguistic learner.
  • Read comic books in Czech. The vocabulary will be pretty easy and you’ll get your word fix as well.
  • Switch on the subtitles while watching Netflix or YouTube videos in Czech. Trust me, this makes a world of a difference.

Tips for everyone:

  • Google Play and Apple Store will shower you with a variety of apps. Don’t underestimate their power. Even the laziest learners might get bored on the train or while waiting in a deserted café for it to stop raining. Plus, they’re fun, and some of them will work on your phone AND Kindle!
  • Take online Czech classes. They’re great for busy people! You can study in your bed and they never dry up. You can learn Czech fast and free with CzechClass101. It’s a gorgeous playground full of extensive vocabulary lists, lists of Czech phrases, audio and video lessons with transcripts, and flashcardswe even have a YouTube channel. If you want to study offline, no problem. You can download our lessons and use them on a plane or in the middle of the woods. Look at this online lesson for beginners; it has all you need to start learning Czech—audio, transcript, and vocabulary—and the tenses and grammar are explained in detail!
  • Watch Czech TV shows or YouTube channels, preferably with subtitles on, so that you can work on your spelling.
  • Get yourself a nice Czech girlfriend or boyfriend. Okay, “just” a friend (or a pen pal). This could help you improve your written Czech and writing skills in general.

How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

That’s it, guys! I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new!

If you’re taking your Czech studies seriously, you might grab a Czech grammar book or learn online (the latter of which is way more convenient).

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you could imagine!

What can you find here?

Sign up now, it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you, and share your favorite learning tips. Let’s get in touch!

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The Best Czech Proverbs

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Ahhh, proverbs…those charming pieces of wisdom that add a nice ring (or a pitch of pathos) to any speech or article, and make you ultimately irritated in certain situations. Like right after you failed your adventurous challenge. 

However, they’re also comforting. Knowing that people in the past have gone through the same stuff we’re dealing with now is encouraging. And that’s exactly how we should see proverbs: as little “hellos” from our ancestors, who created them as reflections of who we are and how we see the world, life, love, success…you name it.

This article about Czech proverbs and sayings will give you insight into not only the Czech language, but also the culture and mindset behind it. You might be surprised at how much proverbs vary from one country or culture to another. 

Have you ever read or heard a Czech proverb? No? That’s okay…žádný učený z nebe nespadl (“no expert has ever fallen from the skies”). I hope that you’re a little confused and very curious now (and no, I did not get a stroke just now). I’m just giving you a little example. 

In this article, I’ll explain the most common Czech proverbs in English. Let’s dive right into it!

A Person Standing Behind the Starting Line at a Race

Lépe pozdě než nikdy. / “Better late than never.”

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. Czech Proverbs About Money
  2. Motivational Czech Proverbs
  3. Czech Proverbs About Time
  4. Czech Proverbs About Attitude
  5. Czech Proverbs About Life
  6. Cool Czech Proverbs in English That Even Many Natives Don’t Understand
  7. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. Czech Proverbs About Money

Believe it or not, there are plenty of Czech sayings out there on the topic of money. Here are just a few… 

Odvážnému štěstí přeje.

  • “Luck favors the brave ones.” / “Fortune sides with him who dares.” 

This one is pretty straightforward, right?

Fun fact #1: This quote is actually from Virgil (the author of the Aeneid), but my nation seems to like it a lot.

Fun fact #2: Czechs aren’t the most courageous people in the world. 

During the communist era (I’m going to repeat this a lot, bear with me), which ended “only” thirty years ago, it was much safer to keep quiet and remain unseen. Today’s kids are a whole different story, though: adventurous, ambitious, wordly.

Bez práce nejsou koláče. 

  • “Without work, there are no kolaches.”

No pain, no gain, guys. This one pairs great with…

Pečení holubi nelítají do pusy. 

  • “Baked pigeons don’t fly into your mouth.”

The Czech believe that if you want to achieve something, you have to hustle and work extra-hard. Every success has to be hard-earned. There have to be blood stains all over you. 

Making money doing what you love? Pffft. 

Making two dimes a week as a miner working twenty-hour shifts? Well done, buddy!

Czechs love their food, so don’t be surprised when you see them come up often in proverbs. Speaking of, what’s your favorite Czech food? And do you know how to order in a Czech restaurant?

Čas jsou peníze. 

  • “Time is money.”

The meaning of this one is pretty obvious: Don’t wait around if you could be making money instead.

Oh, just don’t talk about money in the Czech Republic. No figures. People might look at you funny if you ask them about their income, mortgage, debt, child support…just kidding. 

However, there are some basic money-related Czech phrases that you’ll need for your everyday interactions. Check them out: 


Zadarmo ani kuře nehrabe. 

  • “Chickens don’t dig for free.” 

Knowing your worth and value sure is important. But this Czech proverb is more about…not doing stuff just out of the goodness of your heart.

Kdo šetří, má za tři. 

  • “Who keeps saving has more than three people combined.”

Okay, guys. I do agree it’s important to save some bucks for a rainy day, but saving can get out of hand too! Don’t forget that your happiness and well-being are way more important, so don’t deny yourself the opportunity to use your own money on stuff that makes you happy!

This proverb doesn’t apply to money exclusively, and it comes from the old dark times when people ate artificial “honey” and didn’t know when the local store would restock on toilet paper, so…they stocked up on it, and saved it. (True story.)

Coins Stacked with a Small House on Top

Sometimes, money CAN buy happiness.

2. Motivational Czech Proverbs

We could all use some motivation now and then, whether to lift our spirits…or to lift our bums off the sofa. Here are a few of the best Czech proverbs to do just that! 

Co můžeš udělat dnes, neodkládej na zítřek. 

  • “Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.”

If you want to do something, do it right away. Like… The last piece of cake in your fridge might as well be eaten tonight, don’t you think?

Malé ryby taky ryby. 

  • “Even small fish are fish.”

Here we go again: the communist era (you can learn more about the Czech history after WWII here). Here’s what I genuinely enjoy about my people—we can appreciate the little things in life. Even small victories count, you know?

Opakování matka moudrosti. 

  • “Repetition is the mother of wisdom.”

A.k.a. “Repetition is the mother of all learning.” If you want to create new neural paths, repeat the thing you want to learn until it becomes second nature.

S poctivostí nejdál dojdeš. 

  • “Honesty is the best policy.”

Being truthful is a virtue. Just don’t overdo it, please. 

Last weekend, my grandma was being very honest and shrieked: “You look pregnant!”

I’m not pregnant.

Naděje umírá poslední. 

  • “Hope dies last.”

…for hope to even possibly die is for there to be nothing else left.

3. Czech Proverbs About Time

Time affects literally every aspect of our lives, so it should come as no surprise that there are a number of proverbs on the topic…

Nač stahovat kalhoty, když brod je ještě daleko? 

  • “Why put your pants down while the ford is still far away?”

As in: Everything in due time. Also, the proverb’s delicately hinting that you’re going to “use the bathroom” someplace safe near the ford. 

By the way, before your trip to CZ, make sure you know how to ask where the nearest bathroom is—not a lot of people speak English!

Co se v mládí naučíš, ve stáří jako když najdeš. 

  • “What you have learned young you’ll find useful in the old.”

My grandma was probably taught to be extremely honest. Don’t be like grandma, and focus instead on learning skills that don’t traumatize other people, please.

Ráno moudřejší večera. 

  • “The morning is wiser than the evening.”

You know how sometimes you can’t sleep because your mind is racing, you get anxious, and everything seems so difficult and hopeless…and then in the morning you feel much better even though nothing has changed?

Or! Have you ever made a decision too fast and regretted it later?

These are great examples of what this proverb is referring to.

Don’t rush yourself. Sleep on it (literally or figuratively). Give yourself time to think things through. You’ll be wiser in the morning.

Ranní ptáče dál doskáče. 

  • “The early bird will hop further (gets the worm).”

No wonder all the billionaires and CEOs get up at four a.m., right?

It’s totally okay to sleep in, but if you get a head-start, you’ll get more done!

Starého psa novým kouskům nenaučíš. 

  • “You can’t teach an old dog to perform new tricks.”

My friend recently said this to me with a frustrated sigh and then took a sip of her wine.

Meaning: People who have been doing something a certain way for a very long time, most likely won’t change their routine just because you want to get married and move in together. Oh, the second part is totally just an example.

Trpělivost růže přináší. 

  • “Patience brings roses.”

And maybe, if you’re patient enough, he’ll finally produce a ring. Eventually. If you’re patient enough.

Okay, seriously. This proverb carries a message about “everything in due time.” So don’t try to rush things. Trust it will happen, and it’s yours.

4. Czech Proverbs About Attitude

They say that attitude is everything. But what exactly does that mean? 

Zlost je špatný rádce. / Mluviti stříbro, mlčeti zlato. 

  • “Anger is a bad advisor.” / “Speaking is silver, silence is gold.”

These two proverbs urge us to be careful about what we say in anger, because people can’t unsee or unhear things. Next time you’re tempted to scream your lungs out or say something nasty, take a deep breath first.

Dobrá rada nad zlato

  • “Good advice is more valuable than gold.”

IMO, sometimes good advice even YIELDS gold.

Kdo jinému jámu kopá, sám do ní padá. 

  • “He who digs a hole for someone will fall in it himself.”

Karma’s a b*tch! Be nice and nice things will come to you. Dig holes and you’ll end up with both legs broken.

Darovanému koni na zuby nekoukej. 

  • “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.”

Accept gifts graciously, and don’t question their value. I mean…who doesn’t like free stuff, right?

    → Attitude and personality often go hand-in-hand. If you would like to learn how to describe your personality in Czech, see our list of adjectives and go through this lesson

A Horse Neighing

Darovanému koni na zuby nehleď.

5. Czech Proverbs About Life

We all want to live the best life possible, right? But it’s not always that easy. Here are some Czech proverbs that might help you, though! 

Nehas, co tě nepálí. 

  • “Don’t fight a fire that’s not burning you.”

Mind your business. Did you know that Czechs are known for not giving an F? That’s why we often seem disinterested, cold, or rude (even though we’re dying to engage on the inside).

Sytý hladovému nevěří. 

  • “The sated/full doesn’t believe the hungry.”

If I told you that Czech is totally easy, and that if you’d started studying it a couple weeks ago, you should be fluent by now…would you believe me?

And if you told me that Czech is so hard, almost impossible to learn…would I believe you?

Now who’s the sated one?

Dvakrát měř, jednou řež. 

  • “Measure twice, cut once.” 

The meaning of this one is obvious. Be careful and do all the preparations carefully. (Sometimes it’s called procrastination.)

Co zaseješ, to sklidíš. 

  • “You reap what you sow.”

Ever heard about karma?

Pes, který štěká, nekouše. 

  • “A dog that barks doesn’t bite.” / “Someone who makes threats all the time seldom carries out the threats.”

Except for the angry, tiny dogs—those always bite!

The actual meaning of this proverb is: Even if something seems intimidating/scary/too much/too loud, don’t get put off or scared. It’s likely just a facade.

Kdo uteče, vyhraje. 

  • “He who runs away, wins.”

Sometimes, it’s wiser to give up and walk away from a situation if you think you can’t win.

The ‘ESC’ Button on a Keyboard

Kdo uteče, vyhraje.

6. Cool Czech Proverbs in English That Even Many Natives Don’t Understand

…but really, who understands all the proverbs in their language? 

Jednou za Uherský rok. 

  • “Once in a Hungarian moon.”

This is equivalent to “once in a blue moon” or “very rarely.” Nobody knows what Hungary has to do with it.

Házet flintu do žita. 

  • “Throwing your rifle in the rye.” 

To throw in the towel, especially after a long fight that seemed to be going nowhere.

Má máslo na hlavě. 

  • “He has butter on his head.”

This refers to when someone is hiding a lot of secrets (very obvious things) that everybody knows about (a.k.a. “has skeletons in his closet”).

Why butter? Who knows! We like butter. Butter is life. Butter is the Czech cream cheese and peanut butter in one.

V noci je každá kočka černá. 

  • “Every cat is black at night.”

When you can’t see things clearly, everything might seem the same to you.

Nedráždi hada bosou nohou. 

  • “Don’t pat a snake with bare feet.”

A.k.a. “walking into the lion’s den.” It’s a fun phrase, considering there are basically no venomous snakes in the country.

A Yellow Cobra

Don’t pat a snake with bare feet!

7. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new! Which of these Czech proverbs can you most relate to? 

If you’re taking your Czech studies seriously, you basically have two options: grab a Czech grammar book or learn online (the latter of which is way more convenient).

CzechClass101.com makes learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you could imagine!

What can you find here?

Sign up now—it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you. Let’s get in touch!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech

Learn Czech Grammar in a Nutshell

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What comes to your mind when you think about learning another language? 

Casually chatting with locals while drinking delicious Czech beer? Enjoying Forman’s early movies? Writing a secret diary that nobody in your family could read?

You can certainly do all of those things. 

Are you expecting a big fat BUT? You’re correct!

BUT first you have to learn Czech grammar and understand how it works.

I’m not gonna sugarcoat it: It’s completely different from English grammar and the rules might not make much sense to you. 

Yes, there is the dreaded declension (each noun and adjective has fourteen different forms) and verb conjugation.

In the end, though, you’ll find out that learning Czech is quite easy, as long as you don’t try to compare it to English.

On this page, I’ll walk you through the rules of basic Czech grammar. And because I’m a nice person, I’ll add some tricks on how to master them.

Shall we? I promise it’s going to be a breeze.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. Basic Czech Grammar: General Rules
  2. Cases: Noun and Adjective Declension
  3. Czech Verb Conjugation and Tenses
  4. Formal and Informal Voice
  5. Numbers
  6. How CzechClass101.com Can Help You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. Basic Czech Grammar: General Rules

First things first: Czech is a Slavic language, and as such, it has nothing in common with English. You need to forget all about English grammar when studying Czech. Trying to compare the languages and scrambling around to find similarities would only hinder your efforts. It would be a complete waste of time. 

That said, there are some Czech words that come from Latin, and we use quite a lot of Americanisms (you might hear the words “sorry” and “legit” a lot).

The most significant difference? (Apart from pronunciation, of course…)

Word Order

Czech word order is much more flexible than you’d expect. The rules are pretty much non-existent (figuratively speaking) and we rely a lot on intonation.

General word order:

  • Subject – Verb – Object
    Tomáš nerad jí. (“Tomáš doesn’t like to eat.”)
  • Verb – Subject – Object – ?
     Jí Tomáš rád? (“Does Tomáš like to eat?”)

As mentioned above, intonation is very important. It will help you distinguish between a neutral statement and a question in sentences with the same word order (yes, that can and does happen a lot). 

Null-Subject Sentences

    In Czech, personal pronouns are used way less often than in English. And thanks to declension and verb conjugation, they’re mostly used for emphasis.

That means the personal pronoun can be omitted—the suffix of the verb makes it perfectly clear who or what the subject is.

Take these two sentences for example: 

  • Já tě miluju víc než ona! (“I love you more than she does!”) 
  • Miluju tě víc než ona. (“I love you more than she does.”)

The former is what you might hear screamed out loud during a fight, while the latter is something you would hear whispered or stated in a conversation.

For more details on this, see our page for painless Czech grammar and our Czech pronouns vocabulary list.

A Little Boy Frustrated with His Homework

Learning a new language is fun!

Genders

Some of the most unfamiliar Czech language grammar rules for new learners have to do with grammatical gender. The Czech language divides nouns into three categories based on their gender:

  • Feminine
  • Masculine
  • Neuter

For the record, masculine and feminine partially overlap with the natural gender of human beings, and baby animals are usually neuter.

To determine the grammatical gender of a noun, you need to look at its ending in singular form (the last consonant or vowel).

  • Masculine nouns normally end in a consonant. (otec – “father” / pes – “dog” / hrad – “castle”)
  • The majority of nouns that end in -a are feminine. (máma – “mom” / sestra – “sister” / kočka – “cat”) 
  • Nouns that end in -o are always neuter. (auto – “car” / okno – “window”)
  • Nouns that end in -e are usually feminine, but can also be neuter. (růže – “rose” / kuře – “chicken”)

To make things even more exciting:

    ➢ Masculine nouns are further divided into animate (people and animals) and inanimate (things, places, and abstractions) nouns.

My personal tip: Don’t get creative and forget about shortcuts. The only bulletproof way… You know what I’m about to recommend, don’t you? (Memorize each word’s gender while learning new vocabulary!)

Why is grammatical gender so important? You need to know a word’s gender in order to add the correct ending when declining a noun or linking an adjective to it.

Speaking of which…

2. Cases: Noun and Adjective Declension

Now, what you’ve all been waiting for: Czech declension rules!

  • In Czech, as well as in many other Slavic languages, each noun and adjective can have fourteen forms (seven in singular, seven in plural).
  • There are seven cases.
  • There is a set of paradigms for each grammatical gender.

1. Nominative (basic)

  • David je krásný. (“David is gorgeous.”)

2. Accusative (primarily used for the object of a verb)

  • Bez Davida nikam nejdu. (“I’m not going anywhere without David.”)

3. Genitive (the same as the English preposition “to”)

  • Dám to Davidovi. (“I will give it to David.”)

4. Dative (primarily means “to” / “for”)

  • Tohle je pro Davida. (“This is for David.”)

5. Vocative (for addressing or calling people)

  • Davide, počkej! (“David, wait!”)

6. Locative (“about,” used only after prepositions)

  • Řekla mi o Davidovi. (“She told me about David.”)

7. Instrumental (“by” / “with”)

  • Jdu s Davidem. (“I’m going with David.”)

Make sure you memorize all the paradigms and know how to use them correctly. It’s a little tedious, but I assure you it’s doable.

When I was in third grade, we used a set of questions to help us remember the seven cases:

1. Who/what? (Who is that?)

2. Without whom/what? (Without whom would you not be the person you are today?)

3. To whom/what? (To whom are you going to give this present?)

4. I see who/what? (Who did you meet at the movies?)

5. Hi, …!

6. About whom/what? (I’ll tell you everything about her.)

7. With whom? (Who did you dance with at the party?)

A Woman Reading on the Bus

Reading is a great way to improve your language skills.

Is it really important to remember all that stuff?

It is, because…

Czech Genders and Declension

In English, the plural of a noun is formed by adding -s to the singular form. However, Czech language grammar requires that we add various suffixes according to gender and number (singular or plural) to form the plural of nouns and adjectives.

That’s when the paradigms come into play.

    You can’t form a Czech sentence without knowing the gender of the nounyou wouldn’t be able to decline it correctly.

3. Czech Verb Conjugation and Tenses

In Czech grammar, conjugation is done through verb ending modification based on the tenses.

  • Czech verbs express three absolute tenses: past, present, and future.

Present tense verb endings:

PersonSingularPluralExample: Dělat (“To do”)
1st (I; We)-u/-i/-m-eme/-íme/-ámeDělám; děláme
2nd (You)-eš/-íš/-áš-ete/-íte/-áteDěláš; děláte
3rd (He/she/it; They)-e/-í/-á-ejí/-ějí/-í/-ou/-ajíDělá; dělají

Past tense:

The past tense in Czech is formed by combining an auxiliary verb (which indicates the person and number of the verb’s subject, a.k.a. “the doer”) with a past form of the main verb. 

    The Czech past tense can have various translations in English. 

Example:
Žila jsem…
“I have lived…” / “I lived…” / “I was living…”

Future tense:

In imperfective verbs, it is formed using the future forms of the verb být (“to be”) and the infinitive.

  • Budu vařit. (“I’ll cook.”)

In perfective verbs, the present form expresses the future.

  • Uvařím. (“I’m going to cook.”)

Být (“to be”) conjugation for future tense:

PersonSingularPlural
1stbudubudeme
2ndbudešbudete
3rdbudebudou

Czech conjugation requires quite a bit of memorizing. You can start with this list of the most common Czech verbs.

Remember:

    ➢ Czech is a null-subject language, which means that the subject (personal pronouns are almost never used) can be omitted if it’s clear from the context. The person is expressed through the verb’s conjugation.

4. Formal and Informal Voice

If you speak French, Spanish, or German (for example), you might be familiar with this fun, slightly old-fashioned verb modification. In Czech, there’s a difference between formal and informal speech. 

    The main difference is that when talking to a person in the formal voice, you have to use the second person plural instead of the second person singular.

So, instead of saying Jak se máš? you say Jak se máte? (“How are you?”)

    Another difference: Greetings.

When greeting your friend whom you know well, you would use the informal voice as well as a different set of greetings.

Informal greetings:

  • Ahoj! (“Hello!” and also “Bye!”) 
    • This is one of the most used greetings.
  • Čau! (Same as above.) 
    • Fun fact: It’s pronounced pretty much the same way as the Italian word Ciao!
  • Měj se! (“See you!”) 
    • Literally: “Be good.”

Formal greetings:

  • Dobrý den. (“Good day.”)
  • Dobré ráno. (“Good morning.”)
  • Dobré odpoledne. (“Good afternoon.”)
  • Dobrý večer. (“Good evening.”)
  • Nashledanou. (“Bye.”)

Someone Watching Videos on Their Tablet

Watching videos in Czech will help you understand word order and get a grip on intonation.

5. Numbers

The Czech numbers one through ten are unique, which means you’ll have to memorize them. (So much memorizing, I knooooow. But it’s grammar, we’re doing serious work here!)

  1. Jeden
  2. Dva
  3. Tři
  4. Čtyři
  5. Pět
  6. Šest
  7. Sedm
  8. Osm
  9. Devět 
  10. Deset

Now it gets easier!

For tens, you add -náct:

  1. Jedenáct
  2. Dvanáct
  3. Třináct

Once you reach 20, 30, 40, up to 100, you connect the respective numbers (tens go first):

Dvacet pět. (“Twenty-five.”)
Padesát dva. (“Fifty-two.”)

As you go higher, you do the same with hundreds and thousands (the highest goes first):

Sto třicet tři. (“One hundred thirty three.”)
Dva tisíce dvacet. (“Two thousand and twenty.”)

We have a great guide on Czech numbers, and if you’re interested in counting your riches in Czech, check out this one.

A Student Writing Math Problems on the Board

Czech numbers are much easier than those in other languages.

6. How CzechClass101.com Can Help You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

If you’re taking learning Czech seriously, you could grab a Czech grammar book or learn online (the latter of which is way more convenient).

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you could imagine!

What can you find here?

Sign up now, it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know if this page helped you. Let’s get in touch!

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How Hard is it to Learn Czech?

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Let’s debunk this myth about Slavic languages being incredibly hard and almost impossible for English-speakers to learn.

Oh, please. 

How hard is it to learn Czech? Not at all. Sure, there’s going to be a lot of new things—things that seemingly make no sense, things you’ll hate, and things that will make your tongue twist. However, Czech isn’t that hard, complicated, or nasty. It’s just different from English.

Learning another language is always an exciting process. Yup, it’s hard at the beginning (beginnings are hard whether you’re learning Czech, training for your first half-marathon, or learning how to produce an edible dinner without setting your kitchen on fire). But once you turn the corner, things get easier and you start to make progress faster.

The trickiest part of Czech is probably a tie between the pronunciation and the declension. But with practice, effort, and determination, it’s nothing you can’t master.

We’ve got your back, buddy! Now. Sit back and let me convince you that Czech is just as easy as any language you already speak.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Learning Czech Table of Contents
  1. Things That Will Require Some Effort: Sometimes Life Gets Hard…
  2. The Good News: The Easy Aspects of Learning Czech
  3. I Can’t Wait to Start Learning Czech! What Should I Do First?
  4. Tips!
  5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. Things That Will Require Some Effort: Sometimes Life Gets Hard…

…and so does the wonderful Czech language.

Why is Czech hard to learn, and what sucks the most?

A- Declension

There are seven cases in the Czech language:

1. Nominative

2. Genitive

3. Dative

4. Accusative

5. Vocative

6. Locative

7. Instrumental

  • That means there’s a whopping fourteen versions of each noun, adjective, pronoun, and numeral (singular + plural).
  • You need to know the gender of the word (masculine, feminine, neuter) in order to do the declension.
  • Each case changes the ending of the word and the preposition.

Yes, you need to memorize all of them. There’s no shortcut.

No, I’m not kidding.

    ➢ Thankfully, someone very nice and smart created fourteen paradigms of noun declension. Once you memorize the declension of these paradigms and learn to distinguish between words of different grammatical genders, the rest will be a smooth ride.

MasculineFeminineNeuter
Pán (“Mister”)Žena (“Woman”)Město (“City”)
Hrad (“Castle”)Růže (“Rose”)Moře (“Sea”)
Muž (“Man”)Píseň (“Song”)Kuře (“Chicken”)
Stroj (“Machine”)Kost (“Bone”)Stavení (“Cottage”)
Předseda (“Chairman”)
Soudce (“Judge”)
Jiří (“George”)

    ➢ Learn the genders: even though “-a” being at the end of a word is a pretty reliable indicator that the word is declined as žena, it can also be declined as předseda, resulting in completely different endings and meanings.
    ➢ The same goes for adjective declension. These babies are just as easy, and vary depending on the gender of the noun they’re related to.
    ➢ And…pronouns. Pronoun declension is a teeny bit more complicated because some of them are irregular. Teehee.

Check out this amazing article that will make the declension easy for ya.

A Girl Writing on Her Notebook

Be consistent; study every day.

B- Conjugation

Czech conjugation is the way a verb changes to show number, gender, person, and mood

  • There are four verb classes (that means four different verb endings).
  • There are six persons:, ty, on/ona/ono, my, vy, oni/ony/ona (“I, you, he/she/it, we, you, they”).
  • The verb form usually depends on the number of persons and the gender.

Conjugation is a pretty simple and straightforward process. 

Do you speak German, Spanish, Italian, or Latin? Great! Thanks to similar rules, Czech conjugation will be a piece of cake for you!

Watch for the ending of each word.

-at, -át singular + plural (Example: dát “to give”)-ovat, -ít, -ýt singular + plural (Example: kupovat “to buy”) 
1. Dám
2. Dáš
3.
4. Dáme
5. Dáte
6. Dají
1. Kupuji
2. Kupuješ
3. Kupuje
4. Kupujeme
5. Kupujete
6. Kupují
-it, -et, -ět singular + plural (Example: sedět “to sit”)-out, -ci singular + plural  (Example: zapomenout “to forget”)
1. Sedím
2. Sedíš
3. Sedí
4. Sedíme
5. Sedíte
6. Sedí
1. Zapomenu
2. Zapomeneš
3. Zapomene
4. Zapomeneme
5. Zapomenete
6. Zapomenou

Of course, there are a few irregular verbs that you’ll have to memorize and learn how to conjugate from scratch. This lesson is awesome for an avid Czech student! 

A Woman Studying on Her Laptop

There are things you will have to memorize.

C- Formal and Informal Speech

Formal and informal speech What can I say? I don’t understand this quirk either. It’s pretty useless and frustrating, but oh well.

    Formal speech (second person plural, vy) is used in a formal setting, with older people, with people you’ve just met, at work, etc.

    Informal speech (second person singular, ty) is used with family and friends, and in informal settings.

Formal:
Jste krásná. (“You are beautiful.”)

Informal:
Jsi krásná. (“You are beautiful.”)

Cute, isn’t it?

D- Pronunciation

Czech is a phonetic language, and as such, it’s pronounced the same way it’s written (just like Latin or Spanish, for example).

But the Czech language has a little surprise for you: additional letters with diacritics (marks above the letter). These can be a háček (“hook”), čárka (“length mark”), or kroužek (“circle”), and they change the pronunciation of the letter.

Make sure you know and practice the pronunciation of each Czech consonant and vowel.

Remember:

    Final consonants in the Czech language are fully pronounced, including the letter “h,” which is most often silent in English. 

    Voiced consonants (b, v, g, ď, z, ž, h) at the end of the word are silent.

    Ch is a single letter in the Czech alphabet, pronounced through the throat (like “mojito,” for example).

    The soft consonants ď, ť, ň and di, ti, ni don’t exist in English. To pronounce them correctly, try to put the tip of your tongue further back against your soft palate and pronounce the regular “d,” but much, much softer.

This article will help you deal with some of the hardest Czech words to pronounce, and show you how to correct any mistakes you’re making!

2. The Good News: The Easy Aspects of Learning Czech

1. Czech conjugation is somewhat similar to that of certain Latin-based languages (Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, and Romanian).

2. Czech vocabulary is made of subsets of word roots, prefixes, and suffixes linked together in easy-to-remember and logical ways. Many Czech words are combos of prefix + root. For example: Při-nést (“to bring”) / od-nést (“to take away”) / za-nést (“to take something somewhere”).

3. Declension changes only the end of the word, most often the last vowel. Other changes follow consistent and straightforward rules.

4. Czech is a phonetic language, pronounced the same way it’s written. This is similar to the pronunciation in Spanish, Italian, and Latin (and totally different from English pronunciation).

5. There are only three tenses in the Czech language: past, present, and future! How awesome is that!

6. Word order is way looser and easier than in English. It’s flexible, allowing you to put emphasis on different parts of the sentence. The typical Czech word order is subject-verb-object. To ask questions, it’s verb-subject-object. For example: Je těžké naučit se česky? (“Is Czech hard to learn?) / Není těžké naučit se česky. (“Czech isn’t hard to learn.”)

You can do this!

A Woman Carrying Book on Her head

Czech is fun and quite easy to learn!

3. I Can’t Wait to Start Learning Czech! What Should I Do First?

First of all, congrats! Yay!

Now let’s get to work.

1. Set a goal for yourself. This could be “I’m going to be able to order food and ask where the park is in two months” or “I’m gonna be fluent in a year.” Up to you. Get slightly out of your comfort zone; your goal should feel challenging, but doable.

2. Short-term goals seem to be very effective as well. How about learning thirty new words a day?

3. Write down your goals. Write them on several post-it notes and put them somewhere on display. This little mind game is super-effective and motivating.

4. Start with vocabulary. Here’s a list of the most commonly used Czech words. Then, move on to grammar.

5. There are about 300,000 root words in Czech. An average native speaker uses 35,000 words on average. As a beginner, you should master around 500 Czech words. To make small-talk, you should know 1,000-3,000 words.

4. Tips! 

The biggest advantage for you as you set out to learn Czech would be if you speak a language that uses similar grammar (German, Latin, Spanish, Greek)… Think cases, formal speech, and other fun things. Czech grammar is hard even for native speakers—it’s hard for me, too! 

How can you make progress faster?

1. Be consistent, and study every day.

2. Watch kids’ TV shows, and move on to regular TV shows when you feel confident.

3. Read books. Reading is amazing for passively building vocabulary and spelling skills.

4. Challenge yourself. Talk to natives as much as possible (or just listen).

5. Study smart: use flashcards on your phone, download an app, or sign up for an online class.

6. Make it fun and learn about the culture. There are many YouTube videos and interesting TV shows.

7. Visualize, listen, practice.

8. Find a buddy. You’ll push and motivate each other!

9. Talk to yourself, out loud and in your head. This is one of my secret tips that I used when I got serious about actually speaking English with real people (without having a heart attack).

10. Learn from your mistakes. There’s no need to be embarrassed or discouraged.

A Man Smiling while Holding His Earphone

Czech TV shows and podcasts are an excellent way of mastering the language in a pleasant and very effective way.

5. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you can imagine!

What can you find here?

  • English-to-Czech translation and pronunciation tips/tricks
  • Over 630 audio and video lessons
  • Vocabulary learning tools
  • Spaced repetition flashcards
  • Detailed PDF lesson notes

Sign up now—it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you. And if you’ve been learning Czech for a while already, what’s your secret tip for avoiding mistakes? Did we forget to include anything you want to know about learning Czech fast? We’ll do our best to help!

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The 10 Most Common Mistakes in Czech to Avoid

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Mistakes are annoying, and no matter how often you tell yourself that it’s okay to make them, they still suck.

I get it, friend, I’ve been there. I’m a professional translator, and after years of living in a bilingual environment, I still have to pause from time to time and make sure I really want to say “kitchen,” not “chicken.” I ask my American boyfriend for help and clarification all the time. Also, just this morning, I read a Facebook post from Czech Television about a commemorative PLAGUE (instead of “plaque”).

In this article, we’ll be covering typical Czech mistakes that English-speakers make.

The Czech language, like all other languages, has its quirks and surprises that might catch you off-guard or flat out confuse the hell out of you.

Let’s not forget the bright side: You can learn and actually gain perspective from your mistakes. You can use them as a tool to remember certain words or grammar rules, instead of letting them frustrate you and put you off.

Let’s look at the ten most common Czech-English mistakes together.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. Common Pronunciation Mistakes for Czech-Learners
  2. Vocabulary Mistakes in the Czech Language
  3. Word Order Mistakes
  4. Grammar Mistakes
  5. Gender
  6. Word-for-Word Translation
  7. Cases
  8. Conjugation
  9. Prepositions
  10. The Biggest Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
  11. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. Common Pronunciation Mistakes for Czech-Learners

Czech pronunciation might make your tongue twist, and it has nothing in common with English. Remember that Czech is a phonetic language, meaning that the pronunciation highly correlates with the written form. Other phonetic languages with a pronunciation similar to that of Czech include Italian, Spanish, Polish, and Finnish. English is not a phonetic language. 

If your goal is to pronounce Czech correctly, forget about English pronunciation altogether (at least for a bit). Too many mistakes in Czech pronunciation result from trying to incorporate English sounds and rules with those of Czech. 

A- Final consonants

Remember that there are no “silent” letters in the Czech language.

    Final consonants in the Czech language are fully pronounced, including the letter “h,” which is most often voiceless in English.
    Roll your R’s.
    Remember that “ch” is one letter.

For example, the word bůh (“god”) is pronounced without the “puff of air” (aspiration) that’s typical in English pronunciation. It’s a typical Czech mistake, and it’s pretty easy to avoid.

Before you continue, make sure you know how to pronounce consonants in Czech correctly.

B- Sound marks

Sound marks (diacritics) are the marks applied above a letter to create additional sounds other than those in the English alphabet (ž, š, č, ř, ď, ť, ň).

Whilst š, č, ď, ť, and ň can be pronounced quite well by English-speakers (since we can find similar sounds in English), ř and ž tend to be very hard for some people.

    All of these special characters can change the meaning of the word. Be aware of them and don’t ignore them.

Just a few examples:

  • jed (“poison”) / jeď (“drive”)
  • rvát (“to tear”) / řvát (“to scream”)
  • citelný (“significant” or “considerable”) / čitelný (“readable”)

Make sure you familiarize yourself with the top ten hardest words to pronounce and practice in front of a mirror. You can find the basics of how to pronounce characters with diacritics in this lesson.

A Woman in Front of a Blackboard Holding a Stack of Books

Study Czech vocabulary, watch TV shows, and practice!

2. Vocabulary Mistakes in the Czech Language

Okay, vocabulary mistakes might actually be pretty funny, but I bet you don’t want to get yourself into an awkward situation.

A- Prepositions: sem (“here”) and tady (“here”)

This one is tricky.

Remember: If you’re going somewhere (dynamic), you need to use different adverbs and prepositions than if you are/exist somewhere (static)

    ➢ Focus on associating “go” with the dynamic words and “be” with the static words.

Example:

  • Jsem v Praze. (“I am in Prague.”) / Jedu do Prahy. (“I’m going to Prague.”)

B- Correct word, wrong meaning: Czech vs. English

The first thing I want to point out is love. Not the emotion (which is beautiful no matter what), but the word.

    In the Czech language, we only say Miluju tě (“I love you”) to our children or spouses.

I strongly suggest that you stick with mám tě rád/ráda (“I am fond of you”) or mám rád/ráda (“I like”).

    Also, be careful with the word “excited.” The Czech word vzrušený (“excited”) has a sexual meaning. No exceptions.

Say těším se (“I’m looking forward to”) or Mám radost (“I am happy”) instead.

C- Similar Czech Words

Have you ever had cat soup? Gotten a slice of meat with your croissant instead of butter? Gotten a confused look when inviting someone to dinner?

Let’s look at some of the trickiest words: those that sound very similar, but have different meanings.

  • kočka (“cat”) / čočka (“lentil”)
  • včera (“yesterday”) / večer (“evening”) / večeře (“dinner”)
  • máslo (“butter”) / maso (“meat”)
  • jít (“to go by foot”) / jet (“to drive or bike”)
  • přinést (“to bring by carrying”) / přivézt (“to bring something by a vehicle”) / přivést (“to bring someone somewhere by leading”)

It looks like a lot, but it’s actually pretty easy. Just do your work, study slovíčka (“vocabulary”), and you’ll never be served a cat soup!

A Happy Face and a Sad Face

Not all words that sound similar have the same meaning!

3. Word Order Mistakes

One of the most common mistakes Czech-learners make has to do with word order, though this isn’t too difficult. The basic Czech sentence structure follows the subjectverbobject sequence (a.k.a who is doing what). For questions, it’s verbsubjectobject.

    The only rule you should always follow is that the subject ALWAYS precedes the verb.
    The most important info goes last (a.k.a save the best for last).

Example:

  • jdu do kina. (“I’m going to the movies.”)
  • Půjdeš se mnou? (“Will you go with me?”)
  • Ne, proč? (“No, why?”)
  • Proč ne? (“Why not?”)

See? Word order matters. To make things easier for you, we’ve put together this list of the top ten Czech sentence patterns. Memorizing them will help you understand and use the SVO structure.

4. Grammar Mistakes

The Czech language isn’t that difficult, but you should mind a few things:

    Czech doesn’t use personal pronouns as much as English does. Use them only for emphasis.
    When it comes to formal and informal speech, alwaysno matter whatmake sure you’re using formal when speaking to older people or in professional settings.
    I and Y aren’t always pronounced the same and they are not interchangeable.

Here’s an example:

  • Supi napadli holuby. (“Vultures attacked pigeons.”) – first case subject + verb + fourth case object
  • Supy napadli holubi. (“Pigeons attacked vultures.”) – fourth case object + verb + first case subject

We’ve said it a million times, and I’m gonna repeat it for you once more: declension matters, conjugation matters, and ignoring them will do you no good, friend.

In this article, we explain the basics of Czech grammar.

A Little Kid Frustrated with His Homework

Czech grammar isn’t any more complicated than English grammar!

5. Gender

In English, you know who’s a male and who’s a female simply from using personal pronouns. But Czech has different methods. 

Verbs, nouns, pronouns, numerals, and adjectives in Czech change form according to the grammatical case, number, and gender applied to them. If you speak Spanish, Italian, or German, great! You have an advantage.

    The ending of each verb or adjective is different depending on whether it’s feminine, masculine, or neuter.
    Masculine nouns often end with a hard or soft consonant (muž [“man”], hrad [“castle”]).
    Feminine nouns often end with an -a (žena [“woman”], dívka [“girl”]).
    Neuter nouns often end with an -o (město [“city”], světlo [“light”]).

This article will teach you everything you need to know about the Czech gender game.

6. Word-for-Word Translation

Okay, you probably know that this will never work in any language, and you do your best to respect and follow the Czech grammar and vocabulary specs.

Besides, some of your literal translations might actually be pretty embarrassing.

A- I’m excited.

Never, never use the word vzrušený. Yes, the word “excited” does mean vzrušený, but as I mentioned earlier, it has a sexual connotation in Czech. No exception.

When you’re “excited” about something, simply say:

  • To je super. (“That’s awesome.”)
  • Nemůžu se dočkat. (“I can’t wait.”) 
  • Těším se na… (“I’m looking forward to…”)

B- I’m late. / I’m good. / I’m 35.

In this case, you’ll have to learn your slovíčka (“vocabulary”) and not fall into the WFW trap.

These are the most commonly used phrases that just aren’t the same in Czech:

  • “I am late.” (Jsem pozdě.) –> “I am coming late.” / “I am arriving late.” (Mám zpoždění/jdu pozdě.)
  • “I’m good, thanks.” (Jsem dobře.) –> “I have myself good, thanks.” (Mám se dobře, díky.)
  • “I’m hot.” (Jsem horká.) –> “It is hot to me.” (Je mi horko.)
  • “I’m 35.” (Jsem 35.) –> “It is 35 to me.” (Je mi 35.)
Man Unsure about Something

Excited or not?

7. Cases

In Czech, every noun and adjective changes its ending based on its position in the sentence and its function or preposition. That means that every noun has fourteen forms (in singular and plural)—fourteen different endings. Unsurprisingly, many common Czech-English mistakes arise in the form of case confusion. 

Every gender has a set of model nouns (paradigms). Each model noun represents all the other nouns within that gender that carry the same type of ending in the nominative. 

There’s no shortcut around this—you will have to learn every model noun, memorize the endings, and learn how to apply them to other nouns in the same group.

Don’t think you’ll get away with just the first case. 

The same goes for…

8. Conjugation

Czech conjugation and declension essentially provide context so that you know who is doing the action, and when.

The rules are pretty straightforward and easy to understand, but there are also exceptions and irregular verbs.

The two verbs you’ll need and use a lot are:

  • Mít (“to have”)

And

  • Být (“to be”)

Make sure you know how to work with them and use them correctly. Feeling lost? Here’s a list of the fifty most common Czech verbs.

A Man Confused about Pictures on a Blackboard

Conjugation and declension actually make things easier and provide context.

9. Prepositions

In this case, most English-speakers have trouble telling apart “motion” and “static.”

These three guys seem to cause the most confusion:

Do (“Into”): describes a motion into closed places

    Jdu do školy. (“I’m going into school.”)
    Dej to do auta. (“Put it into the car.”)

K (“To”): describes a motion to a point or in connection with visiting someone

    Jedeme k babičce. (“We’re driving to grandma.”)
    Došla jsem k jeho domu. (“I walked to his house.”)

Na (“To”): actions and activities

    Jdeme na výlet. (“We’re going to [on] a trip.”)
    Jedeme na dovolenou. (“We’re going to [on] vacation.”)

Make sure you know what noun prepositions are related to.

10. The Biggest Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

The biggest mistake to make when learning a new language is to be afraid of making mistakes. Remember, by making mistakes, you’ll likely remember the problem/word/specific situation, and it will help you avoid the same mistake in the future.

Don’t rely on books alone. Put yourself out there and start a convo with Czech natives. Watch movies and TV shows in Czech. Read books or articles on the internet.

Variety is the key! Plus, you won’t get bored.

In this article, we summed up the most common Czech-English mistakes. Watch out for them, and your Czech-learning experience will be easy-peasy! Good luck!

11. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you can imagine!

What can you find here?

  • English-to-Czech translation and pronunciation tips & tricks
  • Over 630 audio and video lessons
  • Vocabulary learning tools
  • Spaced repetition flashcards
  • Detailed PDF lesson notes

Sign up now—it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you, and how you’ve been able to avoid mistakes in Czech in the past! Is there anything more you want to know about the common Czech sentence mistakes? We’ll do our best to help!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech

The 10 Most Common Czech Questions and Answers

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Hello there, friend! How are you today? How has your day been? How long have you been studying Czech? Do you speak other languages? Do you speak English? 

You can probably tell that this article is all about the most common Czech questions and answers. I’m going to teach you some basic questions in Czech that may come up in pretty much any conversation, and how to answer them.

Why is this important? Well, learning these common phrases and questions will create a great base for your vocabulary and make any interaction in Czech a lot easier for you.

There’s more to it, of course. Asking the right question is an awesome way to start a conversation, learn new things, get where you want to be (geographically and spiritually), and learn Czech in a fun and interesting way.

So how do you say questions in Czech? What question words in Czech are the most used?

Let’s get into this.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. What is your name?
  2. Do you speak Czech/English?
  3. Where are you from? + Where do you live?
  4. How long have you been studying Czech?
  5. Have you been to the Czech Republic?
  6. How are you?
  7. Do you like Czech food?
  8. What are you doing?
  9. What’s wrong?
  10. How much is it?
  11. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. What is your name?

First Encounter

As Czech uses formal and informal speech, there are two ways to ask Czech questions, depending on the situation. Aside from that, it’s easy-peasy.

Questions:

  • Jak se jmenuješ? (“How are you named?” = “What is your name?”)
    People your age; informal speech.
  • Jak se jmenujete? (“How are you named?” = “What is your name?”)
    People older than you; formal speech (vykání).

Occasionally, you might hear this question as well:

  • A ty jsi…? (“And you are…?”)
    Informal speech.
  • A vy jste…? (“And you are…?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Já jsem Petra. (“I am Petra.”)
  • Jmenuju se Petra. (“My name is Petra.”)

Both versions are interchangeable.

Colleagues Meeting Each Other for the First Time

Hi, my name is Petra!

2. Do you speak Czech/English?

Again, formal and informal speech differ for this question in Czech.

Questions:

  • Mluvíš česky/anglicky? (“Do you speak Czech/English?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Mluvíte česky/anglicky? (“Do you speak Czech/English?”)
    Formal speech.
  • Umíš česky/anglicky? (“Can you [speak] Czech/English?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Umíte česky/anglicky? (“Can you [speak] Czech/English?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Mluvím česky. (“I speak Czech.”)
  • Mluvím anglicky. (“I speak English.”)
  • Nemluvím česky. (“I don’t speak Czech.”)
  • Nemluvím anglicky. (“I don’t speak English.”)
  • Ano, trochu. (“Yes, a little.”)
  • Ano, velmi dobře. (“Yes, very well.”)
  • Ano, ale ne moc dobře. (“Yes, but not very well.”)
  • Ano, docela dobře. (“Yes, quite well.”)
  • Bohužel ne. (“Sorry, I don’t.”)

3. Where are you from? + Where do you live?

Czech Republic Flag

That’s the place I call home. Where are you from?

Questions:

  • Odkud jsi? (“Where are you from?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Odkud jste? (“Where are you from?”)
    Formal speech.
  • Kde bydlíš? (“Where do you live?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Kde bydlíte? (“Where do you live?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Jsem z České republiky. (“I am from the Czech Republic.”)
  • Jsem z Prahy. (“I am from Prague.”)
  • Bydlím v USA. (“I live in the U.S.”)
  • Žiju v Praze. (“I live in Prague.”)

Dive deeper and read this lesson to get a grip on Czech phrases and questions related to this topic.

Of course, not everyone lives in the U.S. or the Czech Republic. Find your country and learn how to pronounce it in Czech on Wikipedia or our website

Getting ready for a convo about geography? This article is a must-read for ya!

4. How long have you been studying Czech?

Introducing Yourself

This is the Czech question you should definitely expect to hear if you’ve gotten this far in the conversation! 

Questions:

  • Jak dlouho se učíš česky? (“How long have you been studying Czech?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Jak dlouho se učíte česky? (“How long have you been studying Czech?”)
    Formal speech.
  • Učíš se česky už dlouho? (“Have you been studying Czech for a long time?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Učíte se česky už dlouho? (“Have you been studying Czech for a long time?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Učím se česky rok. (“I have been studying Czech for a year.”)
  • Učím se česky od minulého roku. (“I have been studying Czech since last year.”)
  • Ano, učím se česky už dlouho. (“Yes, I have been studying Czech for a long time.”)
  • Ne, neučím se česky dlouho. (“No, I haven’t been studying Czech for a long time.”)

5. Have you been to the Czech Republic?

This Czech question may come up during the conversation, especially if you say you’ve been learning the language for a while.

Questions:

  • Byl/byla jsi někdy v České republice? (“Have you ever been to the Czech Republic?”)
    Informal speech; [masculine/feminine].
  • Byl/byla jste někdy v České republice? (“Have you ever been to the Czech Republic?”)
    Formal speech; masculine/feminine.
  • Jedeš do České republiky? (“Are you going to the Czech Republic?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Jedete do České republiky? (“Are you going to the Czech Republic?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Zatím ne. (“Not yet.”)
  • Rád/ráda bych se tam brzy podíval/podívala. (“I would like to visit soon.” – masculine/feminine)
  • Ano, moc se mi tam líbilo. (“Yes, I liked it very much.”)
  • Ano, ale vůbec se mi tam nelíbilo. (“Yes, but I didn’t like it at all.”)

6. How are you?

A Group of Women Catching Up with Each Other

How have you been?

If you’ve made a new Czech friend, you may want to ask how they’re doing next time you see each other. Here are the most common ways to ask and answer this question in Czech.

Questions:

Informal speech:

  • Jak se máš? (“How are you?”)
  • Jak se ti vede? (“How are you doing?”)
  • Jak se vede? (“How is it going?”)
  • Jak se ti daří? (“How are you doing?”)
  • š se dobře? (“Are you doing well?”)
  • Co je nového? (“What’s new?”)

Formal speech:

  • Jak se máte? (“How are you?”)
  • Jak se vám vede? (“How are you doing?”)
  • Jak se vám daří? (“How are you doing?”)
  • te se dobře? (“Are you doing well?”)

Answers:

  • Mám se dobře! (“I’m good!”)
  • A vy/ty? (“And you?” – formal/informal)
  • Daří se mi dobře, děkuji. (“I’m doing well.”)
  • A tobě/vám? (“And you?” – formal/informal)
  • Mám hodně práce. (“I am very busy.”)
  • Nic se nezměnilo. (“Nothing has changed.”)
  • Mám spoustu novinek! (“I have a lot of news!”)

    ➢ Keep in mind that it’s not common to use “How are you?” as a part of just any greeting, such as at the store or in a restaurant while placing an order. The waiters and sales assistants or cashiers would probably be genuinely surprised if you asked (not in a bad way, though).

7. Do you like Czech food?

Svíčková Omáčka Dish

Svíčková omáčka (beef with creamy sauce and dumplings) is one of the most popular Czech meals.

Questions:

  • š rád/ráda české jídlo? (“Do you like Czech food?”)
    Masculine/Feminine; informal speech.
  • te rád/ráda české jídlo? (“Do you like Czech food?”)
    Masculine/Feminine; formal speech.
  • Chutná ti české jídlo? (“Do you like the taste of the Czech food?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Chutná vám české jídlo? (“Do you like the taste of the Czech food?”)
    Formal speech.
  • Jaké je tvoje nejoblíbenější české jídlo? (“What’s your favorite Czech food?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Jaké je vaše nejoblíbenější české jídlo? (“What’s your favorite Czech food?”)

Answers:

  • Ano, je velmi dobré. (“Yes, it’s very good.”)
  • Ano, chutná skvěle. (“Yes, it tastes great.”)
  • Ne, nechutná mi. (“No, I don’t like it.”)
  • Ne, nemám. (“No, I don’t.”)
  • Nejvíc mi chutná řízek. (“I like schnitzel the most.”)
  • Česká kuchyně mi vůbec nechutná. (“I don’t like Czech cuisine at all.”)
  • Miluju české jídlo! (“I love Czech food!”)

Have you been invited to lunch or dinner? Czech out this article and make sure you know how to ask for the food you want to eat!

8. What are you doing?

Man and Woman Talking, Flirting

“What are you doing on Wednesday?”

Questions:

Informal speech:

  • Co děláš ve středu? (“What are you doing on Wednesday?”)
  • Co děláš? (“What are you doing?”)
  • Proč to děláš? (“Why are you doing this?”)
  • Co právě teď děláš? (“What are you doing right now?”)
  • Děláš něco? (“Are you doing anything?”)
  • Co budeš dělat? (“What are you going to do about it?”)

Formal speech:

  • Co děláte ve středu? (“What are you doing on Wednesday?”)
  • Co děláte? (“What are you doing?”)
  • Proč to děláte? (“Why are you doing this?”)
  • Co právě teď děláte? (“What are you doing right now?”)
  • Děláte něco? (“Are you doing anything?”)
  • Co budete dělat? (“What are you going to do about it?”)

Answers:

  • Na středu mám plány. (“I have plans for Wednesday.”)
  • Ve středu mám volno. (“I’m free on Wednesday.”)
  • Nedělám nic. (“I’m not doing anything.”)
  • Teď něco dělám. (“I’m busy right now.”)
  • Nevím, co mám dělat. (“I don’t know what to do.”)
  • Nevím, co s tím udělám. (“I don’t know what I’ll do about it.”)

9. What’s wrong?

Not all days are sunny, and you may want to express your concern for someone if they seem down. Here’s how to ask what happened in Czech.

Questions:

  • Co se stalo? (“What happened?”)
  • Stalo se něco? (“Has anything happened?”)
  • Co se děje? (“What is going on?”)
  • Jsi v pořádku? (“Are you okay?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Jste v pořádku? (“Are you okay?”)
    Formal speech.
  • Potřebuješ pomoc? (“Do you need help?”)
    Informal speech.
  • Potřebujete pomoc? (“Do you need help?”)
    Formal speech.

Answers:

  • Nic se nestalo. (“Nothing happened.”)
  • Všechno je v pořádku. (“Everything is alright.”)
  • Něco se stalo. (“Something happened.”)
  • Potřebuju pomoc. (“I need help.”)
  • Nepotřebuju pomoc. (“I don’t need help.”)
  • Pomozte mi, prosím. (“Help me, please.”)
  • Pomůžu ti. (“I’ll help you.”)
    Informal speech.
  • Pomůžu vám. (“I’ll help you.”)
    Formal speech.

10. How much is it?

A Man Comparing Olive Oil Prices

Which one is on sale?

When you go shopping and there’s no price tag, you’re going to have to ask someone about the price (unless you’re really, really rich or Buddhist).

Questions:

  • Kolik to stojí? (“How much is it?”)
  • Kolik tohle stojí? (“How much is this?”)
  • Kolik stojí tamto? (“How much is that?”)
  • Je to ve slevě? (“Is it on sale?”)
  • Je to drahé? (“Is it expensive?”)
  • Je to levné? (“Is it cheap?”)

Answers:

  • Je to moc drahé. (“It’s too expensive.”)
  • Je to levné. (“It’s cheap.”)
  • Tohle je levnější. (“This is cheaper.”)
  • Stojí to 500 korun. (“It’s 500 crowns.”)
  • Je to ve slevě. (“It’s on sale.”)
  • Není to ve slevě. (“It’s not on sale.”)

We can’t tell you how to handle money, but we can teach you to talk about it in Czech. Find related vocabulary and phrases on CzechClass101.com.

How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun. With us, it’s not about endless memorizing or thick textbooks. Learn Czech with us and make progress faster than you can imagine!

What can you find here?

  • English-to-Czech translation and pronunciation tips/tricks
  • Over 630 audio and video lessons
  • Vocabulary learning tools
  • Spaced repetition flashcards
  • Detailed PDF lesson notes

Sign up now—it’s free!

One last thing: Let us know in the comments if this article helped you. Oh, and what’s your secret tip that helped you learn how to ask questions in Czech? Is there anything you want to know about other common questions in Czech? We’ll do our best to help!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech

The Top 10 Czech Sentence Patterns: A Basic Guide

Thumbnail

Have you ever wondered how some people speak like seven languages? Maybe you even have a friend who starts ordering food in the local language within three days of your vacation. 

Yep, people like that exist—and you could be one of them. In this guide, we’ll introduce and explain the most common Czech sentence patterns. Learning Czech has never been this easy!

You probably know that Czech might be a little tricky to learn (All the conjugation and declension! Lawd!) and that sentence patterns in English and Czech have pretty much nothing in common. Let’s make things easy and forget about lengthy grammar explanations. By simply memorizing the most common Czech sentence structures and patterns, you’ll be able to create dozens of sentence combos and make conversation in Czech a million times easier.

Ready, steady, go!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Czech Table of Contents
  1. A is B
  2. It Is
  3. I Want
  4. I Need to
  5. I Like / I Love
  6. Do You Really Love Me?
  7. Asking Someone to Do Something
  8. May I?
  9. Asking for Information
  10. Asking About Time
  11. Asking About Location or Position
  12. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

1. A is B

Sentence Patterns

Let’s start with the most used, and probably the most useful, Czech sentence structure. With this pattern, you can either say that a noun is also another noun, or describe a noun using an adjective. 

1- Using a Noun

Czech Sentence Pattern A is BEnglish Translation
Ema je moje přítelkyně.“Ema is my girlfriend.”
Jonathan je můj kolega.“Jonathan is my colleague.”
Tyhle hodinky byly dárek k narozeninám.“This watch was a birthday present.”
Tahle dáma je moje babička.“This lady is my grandma.”
Tohle je moje první novela.“This is my first novel.”

2- Using an Adjective

    Noun/Pronoun – Verb Adjective.
Czech Sentence Pattern A is BEnglish Translation
Jsi nádherná.“You are gorgeous.” (feminine)
Tvoje máma je moc milá.“Your mom is really sweet.” (feminine)
Jeho nový byt je obrovský.“His new apartment is huge.” (masculine)
Náš pes je bílý.“Our dog is white.” (masculine)
Tenhle úkol je obtížný.“This task is difficult.” (masculine)

As you can see, it’s quite easy.

Remember: to speak Czech, you also need to work on your vocabulary. Czech out this video with 600 Words Every Czech Beginner Must Know, and then you might also need to review Czech grammar basics.

Sentence Components

2. It Is

Sometimes, you don’t need a lot of words to express yourself (thank God!).

Here’s an easy Czech sentence pattern to describe actions or situations:

    Pronoun – Verb (Conjugated)Adjective.
Czech Sentence Pattern It is / That isEnglish Translation
To je úžasné!“Thats awesome!”
Tohle je nádherné.“This is wonderful.”
Je to vynikající.“It’s delicious.”
Je moc brzo.“It’s too soon.”
Je to vážně zvláštní.“It’s really peculiar.”

You might also want to step up your Czech adjective game to make sure you’re not repeating the same phrases over and over again. (Although, no judgement, we all have our favorite words…it’s kind of like wearing just thirty percent of your wardrobe, isn’t it?)

Anyway! You might find this list of the fifty most common Czech adjectives very useful.

A Little Girl Amazed at a Book She’s Reading

To je úžasné! (“This is awesome!”)

3. I Want

I want ice cream. I want to be the best version of myself. I want to speak Czech like a native. Let’s try, shall we?

Talking about what we want is fun AND important. Don’t slack off; keep reading, we’re almost there. Here’s how to make Czech sentences for expressing your wants:

    I want – Noun (Accusative)
    I want toVerb (Infinitive)

There are two ways to describe that you want something.

1. Chci (“I want”) is more straightforward and reflexive.

2. Chtěl/a bych (“I would like to”) is more polite. It’s a modal verb in the past tense, followed by the word bych.

Here is the conjugation table for your convenience (you’re welcome).

Czech Sentence Pattern I want / I would like toEnglish Translation
Chci lepší práci.I want a better job.”
Chci dezert.I want a dessert.”
Chci být s tebou.I want to be with you.”
Chtěla bych se vdát.I would like to get married.”
Chtěl by se naučit česky.“He would like to learn Czech.”
    Note: The nouns in this pattern are always in the accusative case. 

  4. I Need to

Okay, we really need to cover this one too. You need to be able to tell people what you need. You need to know how to do it. No worries; it’s easy.

In Czech, we usually use the verb potřebovat or muset (“to need” or “must”).

These two modal verbs can be followed by another verb in the infinitive (just in case you need help, here’s a great summary of Czech conjugation), or by a noun in the accusative.

    I need to/I must” – Verb (Infinitive)
    I need/I must” – Noun (Accusative)
    I need” – Personal Pronoun (Accusative)

Czech Sentence Pattern I need / I need to / I mustEnglish Translation
Musím odejít.I need to leave.”
Potřebuje se víc učit.He needs to study more.”
Musím čůrat.I need to pee.”
Potřebuju kafe.I need coffee.”
Potřebuju .I need you!”
A Little Kid Eating Ice Cream

Chci zmrzlinu! (“I want ice cream!”) 

5. I Like / I Love

The difference here is pretty obvious, right?

In Czech, we don’t usually use the word “love” too often. The verb milovat (“to love”) seems to be reserved for personal liaisons (or food), and Czechs like to like things. We use the verb mít rád (“like”) when we talk about things, and rád when we talk about activities or situations. Another alternative is to say líbí se mi (“I like”) when you talk about things you like, such as movies or clothes.

Any questions? Okay, let’s get this done. Here are a few ways to form sentences in Czech to express your likes:

    Rád / ráda (“I like to” / “I love to”) – Verb (Infinitive)
    Mám rád / ráda (“I like” / “I love”) – Noun (Accusative)
    Líbí se mi (“I like” / “I love”) – Noun/Pronoun (Accusative)
    Miluju (“I love”) + Noun/Personal Pronoun (Accusative)

Czech Sentence Pattern I like / I loveEnglish Translation
Miluju jídlo.I love food.”
Mám ráda moji práci.I like my job.”
Miluju .I love you.”
Ráda běhám.I like to run.”
Líbí se mi tyto modré šaty.I like this blue dress.”

6. Do You Really Love Me?

When you’re talking about people, you should be careful with your choice of words—you want to avoid awkward situations, right?

    ► We don’t tell friends we love them. We always stick with mám tě rád/a (“I’m fond of you”).

There might be some exceptions, of course. For example—it’s two a.m. and you’ve had one too many drinks.

To like (appearance/approach)To love (pretty self-explanatory)To like (to be fond of)
Líbit seMilovatMít rád
Petr se mi líbí, je moc sexy. I like Petr, he’s very sexy.”Miluju ho a chci si ho vzít. “I love him, and I want to marry him.”Mám ráda Julii, je to moje nejlepší kamarádka. “I like Julie; she’s my best friend.”
Líbí se mi, je hezká. I like her, she’s cute.”On miluje svoje rodiče. “He loves his parents.”Mám ho ráda a vážím si ho“I am fond of him and I respect him.”

    ► If you’re curious about the word order in these sentences, we have an entire article about Czech Word Order. Czech it out! 
A Couple Having an Intimate Moment

Miluju tě. (“I love you.”)

7. Asking Someone to Do Something

Please, read these lines carefully. This is important. If you want to ask someone to do something, it’s best to be polite and nice. Did I get your attention?

The key word here is prosím (“please”)—it goes at the very beginning or at the end of the sentence.

    Verb (Imperative) Prosím.
    Prosím Verb (Imperative).

Asking someone to do something in CzechEnglish Translation
Posaďte se, prosím.Take a seat, please.”
Prosím, počkejte zde.Please, wait here.”
Prosím, vyslechněte mě.Please, listen to me.”
Pomozte mi, prosím.“Help me, please.”
Pojďte za mnou, prosím.“Follow me, please.”

You might also want to take a look at this list of Czech key phrases.

8. May I?

Asking for permission in Czech is just as simple as it is in English:

    Můžu (“May I”) – Verb – (Noun) + Please?

When asking for permission, we use the verb “can.” We literally ask: “Can I?”

Again, don’t forget to add prosím (“please”) at the beginning or end of the sentence. In this case, it’s not mandatory, but if you want to be really sweet…

Czech Sentence Pattern May I?English Translation
Můžu si sednout, prosím?May I take a seat, please?”
Můžu se vás zeptat?Can I ask you a question?”
Můžu dostat sklenici vody, prosím?May I have a glass of water, please?”
Můžu ti pomoci?Can I help you?”
Můžu se k nim přidat?May I join them?”

9. Asking for Information

There’s a good chance you’ll need to ask for information. This list of the Top Fifteen Czech Questions will make your conversations in Czech much easier.

Here’s how to form basic Czech sentences for asking information of someone:

    Co je (“What is”)
Czech Sentence Pattern What is…?English Translation
Co je tohle?What is this?”
Co je to?What is it?”
Co je tamto?What is that?”

10. Asking About Time

You don’t want to be late, and most of the time, we have our phones on us to keep track of time.

Sometimes, our technology fails us (dead phone battery in the middle of a busy day), and we need to rely on good ol’ human interaction.

Here’s how to ask what time it is in Czech:

    Kdy? (“When?”)
    V kolik hodin? (“At what time?” / “What time?”)
A Man Checking His Watch

Kolik je hodin? (“What time is it?”)

Czech Sentence Pattern When? / At what time?English Translation
Kolik je hodin?“What time is it?”
Jaký je dnes den?“What day is it?”
Kdy máš narozeniny?“When is your birthday?”
Kdy máme schůzku?“What time is the meeting?”
V kolik hodin přijdeš?“What time will you get back?”

This list of the top twenty-five Czech questions might come in handy as well.

11. Asking About Location or Position

Although we all know how to use Google Maps, you might end up getting lost in a tiny Czech village with no service. What would you do?

Ask for directions in perfect Czech, of course! Here’s how you would start a Czech phrase for this:

    Kde? (“Where?”)
Czech Sentence Pattern Where…? English Translation
Kde jsou toalety?“Where is the restroom?”
Kde ses narodil?“Where were you born?”
Kde je výtah?“Where is the elevator?”
Kde najdu víc informací?“Where can I find more information?”

Well, that was easy, right? If you need more information, check out this list of the top ten Czech sentence patterns.

12. How CzechClass101.com Helps You Learn Czech in a Fun Way

CzechClass101.com will make learning Czech easy, exciting, and fun.

What can you find here?

  • English-to-Czech translation and pronunciation tips & tricks,
  • Over 630 audio and video lessons 
  • Vocabulary learning tools
  • Spaced repetition flashcards
  • Detailed PDF lesson notes

Sign up now; it’s free!

But before you go and create your account, let us know in the comments if this article helped you! Is there anything you still don’t quite understand about Czech sentence structure and patterns? We’ll do our best to help you out!

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