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Pridané: 09.02.2015
Autor: Andy BILLINGHAM
Kategória: 03/2015

Tricky Words in this week's OVI

Historic and historical. Some English adjectives have only the -IC form (plastic protective pieces), and some have only the -ICAL form (the Technical University). Then there are some which have both forms, but it's difficult to tell the difference between them (academic, academical - the former is more common nowadays), and finally there are a few which involve a clear difference in meaning. Historical means something which is part of history, something which existed in the past, so a historical record is a past record, which suggests it has been broken.
Historic on the other hand means something which stands out in history, like a milestone or a turning-point, so a historic record is a great, ground-breaking record, like the first four-minute mile in running history, or breaking the sound barrier in flying history. USSK Transport Division set a new record in delivering limestone to the steelworks in 2014, which still holds, so it can't be a historical record; it must be a historic one.

Andy's Wordshop

Writing about overalls with words on the back made me think about T-shirts with words on the front, and that brought me to a difference between Slovak and English which I've mentioned before, but it's worth mentioning again. In Slovak you say "montérky majú vzadu nápis", or "na jeho tričku je napísané", and there's nothing strange about that: the words are really in written (printed) form.
Slovak "nápis" is literally "inscription" in English, and "napísané" is "inscribed", but no English speakers would use those words talking about overalls or T-shirts. They might talk about Latin inscriptions on ancient tombstones, or say that a wedding ring is inscribed with a dedication (venovanie), as they are very formal words. In English though, SPEAKING comes first, not writing, and words on overalls, or T-shirts, or signs in the street (No parking) or in trains (E pericoloso sporgersi), all SAY something, because even when they're printed, written words are only a more permanent form of SPEECH. So just check out what it says on your colleague's back!

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