Tricky Words in this week's OVI
Rules, regulations, laws. I'd say these things are imposed upon us from different levels of authority, in a similar way as "pravidlá", "vyhlášky" and "zákony". Rules are typical for games and
sports, and we keep the rules because we understand they are part of the game. Parents and organizations can impose their own rules too, aiming to standardize the behavior of their children or
employees. Regulations and laws are more formal and are imposed from higher levels.
Traffic regulations come from the Department (Ministry) of Transport, and laws are passed (schválené) by Parliament or Congress. (Even more formal words are "acts" and "statutes".) There is also a
range of words for translating "dodržiavať". "Keep" the rules, "observe" or "maintain" the regulations, "respect" or "abide by" the laws - this shows the range of formality, but these combinations
are not fixed.
This week's question is about the word "morning". Everyone thinks (because their teachers told them) that it means "ráno". Well, English people might have agreed with you about 500 years ago,
because at that time the words "morn" and "morning" were used to mean dawn (úsvit) and sunrise. Nowadays, though, people use the word all the way up to noon or midday, so there's no problem at all
in saying "Good morning" at 10 a.m. or even 11.30 a.m. (ante meridiem, or before midday). Watch out for Slovak dubbing of films such as Poirot in which the characters still say "Dobré ráno" to each
other even when they meet clearly after 8 am. If you connect "ráno" and "ranná hodina", however, you'll see that "ráno" means "early morning", so don't translate "Dobré ráno" - think about "Dobré
I look forward to getting your questions any time you think of them - keep sending them to !