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    We use languages every day without thinking about the literal meaning of the words.
    Well, I was thinking about it and I find some of them a bit funny, so I wanted to share it with you. ;)

    Loanwords are included.

    English :: Slovak :: literal meaning

    1. hose :: hadica :: female snake


    2. tap :: kohútik :: little rooster


    3. car :: automobil :: “self-mover” (self-moving object)

    In socialist Czecho-Slovakia, cars definitely didn’t move by themselves.
    Sometimes it felt like you were driving the Flintstones car.

    4. whale :: veľryba :: big fish


    5. beer :: pivo :: drinkable liquid


    6. vacuum cleaner :: vysávač :: sucker


    7. toilet :: záchod :: “go-behind-er”

    A: I need to pee.
    B: Go behind that bush then.

    8. vodka :: vodka :: water (diminutive)


    9. handle (of a mug or a pitcher…) :: ucho / uško :: ear / little ear


    I’ll post more of them when they cross my mind.
    If you know about any, post them in the comments. :)



    Kur – means cock in Bulgarian and also cock



    Only in some dialects, maybe, otherwise it’s just cock.

    Btw, automobile is an English word as well, Denis. Now, if we had translated it to Bulgarian/Slavic, it would’ve been something like “samohod“. Which is a word we actually have, though not necessarily for a car (likewise, the “vsadehod/всъдеход“, an all-terrain vehicle, can be a car, but it can also be a spacecraft). Similar words are also “samolet” (airplane – self-flyer), “samostrel” (our old word for crossbow – self-shooter) and “samoed”, which is apparently a dog that eats itself.



    @NikeBG Sreamostrel is the only word for crossbow in Serbian, Croats made a new one for handgun-samokres, I guess self igniter, referring to flintlock guns, comes from verb kresati which in the context of flint stones means hitting them to produce a spark, funny enough kresati is also a slang for intercourse, so it also means self-fucker. Needless to say it didn’t catch on, although Croatian gun manufacturer HS produkt has HS 2000 as their biggest seller, and that stands for Hrvatski Samokres 2000. 
    Samohod doesn’t exist in SCBM, but adjective samohodan does, means literally self walker, can be used for type of artillery, lawn mowers etc.
    Vazduhoplov means Aircraft, or literally Air Sailor (not as a person, but as a craft/machine/device)
    Interesting for me: hemijska olovka-literally chemical pencil, means pen, usually ballpoint pen.



    >Only in some dialects, maybe, otherwise it’s just cock.
    It’s the other way around.

    also worth mentioning: “samosval”

    Edit: Vazduhoplav implies lighter than air, a baloon or a zeppelin.




    Vazduhoplav implies lighter than air, a baloon or a zeppelin

    logically yes, linguistically no. It applies to any aircraft in Serbian. Those lighter than air are called Aerostats and those heavier Aerodins,  I don’t think these terms require explanation. Balloon is Balon and Zeppelin is Cepelin or rarely Vazdušni brod (Airship). Aircrafts with own drive are sometimes referred to as letelica (sg. flyer).



    We have the vazduhoplav– thing as well, but only as adjectives (vazduhoplavatelno sredstvo – aircraft) and as vazduhoplavane (air-sailing, air-traffic).
    Otherwise, our current main word for a crossbow is arbalet (from arbalest, an advanced crossbow model). I prefer the old version, but oh well…
    And a pen is himikalka, while a zeppelin is generally tsepelin or dirizhabal.



    …or as its known among the people – vazduplohov



    In Serbian these same words aren’t very exciting…
    Only the 1st one is interesting – hose = “cr(ij)evo” – meaning intestine/bowel…

    Serbian variants of the same words:

    hose : crevo : intestine

    tap : slavina : washer (from Italian lavare)

    car : automobil : self-mover
    also kola : wagons/carriages/wheels

    whale : kit : abyss/sea monster (from Greek kytos)

    beer : pivo : drinkable (liquid)

    vacuum cleaner : usisivač : sucker

    toilet : toalet or “nužnik” : reliever/”necessitier

    vodka : vodka : small water

    handle : drška : holder



    @cHr0mChIk Yea, toaleta and držiak are alternative words for no. 7 and 9.
    We have word držka, but it’s more complicated. :D

    It has 2 meanings:
    2. slang term for mouth or cheeky person – from word drzý cheeky

    A little update

    10. penguin :: tučniak :: fatty (noun)

    Stay cheeky breeki! :D




    I want the book version. Where can I buy?

    I’m working on it. ;)



    Btw, what’s the origin of the Serbian/Croatian/whatever phrase “svaka cast”? Every time I hear it, I first understand it as “every part” (vsyaka chast).



    “чест” not “част”

    should be something like “all honors”



    @NikeBG I’ve heard it a couple of times and yea, the same first thought – všetka časť. But I never tried to find out more about it.

    Now that @aaaaa mentioned чест, he reminded me the phrase we Slovaks use – všetka česť.

    Only 1 letter difference and I don’t see the connection. Shame on me. :D



    it is svaka čast (a in čast is long) and it literally means what aaaaa said. In practice it means well done, congratulations, nice job. Of course it often used sarcastically when someone screws up, or more recent for our president (former prime minister): Svaka čast Vučiću.

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