Anglické jazykové okienko

Anglické jazykové okienko

Tricky Words in this week‘s OVI

Economy. This is a typical example of how the present-day meanings of English words have developed away from the sense of their Latin or Greek origins, whereas in many cases the Slovak meanings remain closer to those roots. It's also a good example of how English words can change their meaning when they are used with an article (a/an or the) or without one. The original sense of economy was “management of the expenditures in a household” (výdavky v domácnosti), which later became extended to the whole country (the national economy) and now includes industrial production (GDP), imports and exports (trade), wages and salaries, tax revenues and public (government or state) spending and borrowing. To ensure that this meaning is understood, the word must be used with the definite article, i.e. “the economy”.

Andy’s Wordshop

If you say “economy” without “the”, then people will probably understand the meaning which has developed away from the original, in the sense of “careful management of expeditures”, i.e. not spending but saving money. People say they need to “make economies” (reduce spending).

G B Shaw said: Economy is the art of making the most of life. That could mean dobré hospodárenie, but equally úspornosť. This is why “economical” means úsporné! So what about the Minister hospodárstva? S/he can't be the Minister for Economy (úspornosť). S/he might possibly be the Minister for the Economy, but that's not the usual title. S/he is conventionally known as the Minister for Trade and Industry, and sometimes (less formally) as the Trade and Industry Secretary.

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