Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Let's Practice Serbian Cyrillic Script - Part 2

A student of mine suggested I could integrate practising the Cyrillic script into the grammar test video lessons. Let's give it a try today with the following lesson which is a part of Serbian 102 course:



As usual, the answer key will be here tomorrow :) For more Serbian phrases in Cyrillic with really slow pronunciation check out this course.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Serbian Language Tests - Locative 1

Although you can find a lot of Serbian language exercises on this site, I am sure you'll like my new way of reading 'n' grammar tests :)


 If you are not sure what the right answers are, I'll publish a video with the key tomorrow :)
Make sure you check the blog posts about:

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Learning Serbian with Songs

While I was creating a playlist of the most well known ex-Yu series for my advanced Serbian students the other day, I stumbled upon this great video of the famous "Slovenska" song by Đorđe Balašević. I'm sure you'll find the perfectly synced lyrics  really helpful. Here's also a link to the translation.
Enjoy it !

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Monday, November 18, 2013

Places in the City - Video Exercise

If you haven't been to Novi Sad, you'll surely look forward to visiting it after you watch this video by Daniel Erdeg :















You can also practise making simple sentences as I did in the classroom exercise and prepare to do one or few tasks based with this video explanation (if necesarry, check the vocabulary video):
  • Exercise for Serbian 102: What can you see ? Šta vidite ?

  • Exercise for Serbian 201: Šta se nalazi ispred Vas / s leve ili desne strane ? Šta ste videli ? or Šta ćete videti kada dođete u Novi Sad

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Serbian Conjugations in Cyrillic Script

If you have always wondered it there were any videos with conjugations in Serbian with the Cyrillic script, here they come :

With this video you can not only pronounce the Simple present conjugations of the verb "zvati se", but you can also practise its word order and asking and answering simple questions in the second part of the video. Which words are missing there ?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

How many sentences can you make in Serbian ?

If you are a beginner in learning Serbian and you want to practise only the most frequent  verbs, I'm sure you'll enjoy this video with:
along with the nouns (in the Accusative case), do watch these videos and try to:
  • ask "what" (šta) questions
  • or simply talk what you see or you don't see along with it: 


For more speaking practice videos click here. and if you are a more advanced learner of Serbian try to ask / answer questions in different tenses or conditionals. For example: Šta bi uradio kada bi video zeca / mačku...?

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Easy Way to Learn Serbian Pronouns

In order to start speaking Serbian fluently, the best way to automatically recall the whole phrases and chunks of language is to listen to films and songs in Serbian (and  preferably sing along). For example, in the chorus of this song you can hear the following phrase over and over again:
Nije za nju, nije za nju ...za nju je ...
and I bet you won't make any mistakes in the future if you want simply to say:
  • ...for her = ...za nju
  • ... isn't for her = ... nije za nju 


On these pages you can find the :
...and don't forget to make the most of the first Serbian with Songs free e-book!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Breaking Bad - Connotation in Serbian

Here comes another listening comprehension for more proficient Serbian language learners, based on the following video:


Feel free to pause the video and try to answer the following questions:
  1. Koliko Mićko ima godina ?
  2. Šta se Mićku zapali i pukne ?
  3. Koliko časova hemije mu treba ?
  4. Zašto profesor hemije ne može da pomogne Mićku ?
  5. Šta profesorka hemije predlaže sve vreme ?
  6. Da li on sam upotrebljava ono što pravi ?
  7. Ko je nepoverljiv prema Mićku ?
  8. Koliko profesora hemije je Mićko do sada pozvao ? 
  9. Odakle Mićko više ne izlazi ?
Which phrases does the teacher use :
  1. to say that she can't help him
  2. to suggest another solution
  3. to inquire about Mićko's needs
  4. to decline his request
  5. to show understanding
  6. to end the conversation
What is the obvious meaning and what's the connotation of these phrases:
  1. ...jel' tu spadaju travnate površine ?
  2. ... malo sam nagoreo
  3. ... i ja sam posle miran dva dana
  4. Završio sam ja s hemijom !
  5. ...ja ne bih to više čačkao
  6. ...jer kad sam video u kom pravcu sve ovo ide, pravo da Vam kažem, šta mi drugo preostaje ?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Advanced Serbian Video Lessons


 After watching this video (several times) try to do the following exercises


 and  answer these questions:
1. Kako se zove prvi kandidat za posao ?
2. Koje su njegove prednosti ?
3. Koje su njegove mane ?
4. Koji posao bi on želeo da radi ?
5. Koji posao mu je predložen ?
6. Da li ga je odmah prihvatio ?
7. Koji je prigovor poslodavca dok on izlazi iz kancelarije ?
8. Kako se zovi drugi kandidat ?
9. Koje su njegove prednosti ?
10. Koje su njegove mane ?
11. Koji posao mu je predložen ?
12. Da li ga je odmah prihvatio ?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Serbian Idioms and Phrases with Verb "nositi" - Part 3

This is the final part in the series of blog posts about the verb "nositi". The previous ones can be found on the following pages:

Today I am going to give you the explanations and various examples of the following phrases:

  • Što ga noge nose /  koliko me(te/ga/je/nas/vas/ih) noge nose = at full speed, as fast as possible = as fast as one's legs will carry one:

a) MREŽNI MARKETING, prevara ili ne - beži kud te noge nose !

or
b) Kakva greška ! Provocirao grupu navijača,  pa bežao kol'ko ga noge nose
  • Pas laje, vetar nosi = idle gossip should be disregarded = the dogs bark, but the caravan goes on; words and feathers the wind carries away; words are but wind
c) Pusti ti draga priče. Znas onu" PSI LAJU, KARAVANI PROLAZE !"?! Samo se ti smiri i slusaj lekare i sve ce biti u redu.
or
dPas laje, vetar nosi 
or
e) No, svako vredjanje najvise govori o onome ko vredja.Psi laju,vetar nosi... (the first comment under the text)
  • Idi gde te (oči vode i) noge nose = gubi mi se s očiju = idi mi s očiju (pej. nosi se) = get out of my sight, get lost, be off with you 
Examples from the internet sites:
fA FaceBook comment
or 
g) A folk song by Mira Škorić "Idi nek te noge nose" (lyrics)
  • Plati pa nosi (or more a more modern rhyming version: plati pa klati):
h) Naslov u tekstu o platnim karticama "Plati pa nosi"
or
 iTo su najobicniji lopovi. Svaka susa danas otvorila auto- skolu i kao poducava te. Plati pa se klati  (the penultimate comment)

And now the tasks for the more advanced /proficient learners of Serbian:

  1. Који од наведених примера комбинује две изреке, док носи значење само једне (на неки начин погрешно употребљено, али не омета разумевање) ?
  2. Који од наведених примера личи на превод енглеског идиома са истим значењем (што показује утицај енглеског због честих буквалних превода на медијима и Интернету )
  3.  Који од наведених примера је употребљен у букваном значењу, и уопште не носи идиоматско / пренесено значење ?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Baby Steps in Serbian

In order not to neglect the beginners in Serbian, here's  a video lesson about Jeremija without my voice. If you are a real beginner, do watch the version with slow pronunciation before doing the following tasks:




  • Say the sentences based on the facts before the answers show up
  • If that's difficult, try simply to read the answers (help)
  • If that's too easy, try to ask the appropriate questions for Jeremija's answers

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Serbian Idioms and Phrases with Verb "nositi" - Part 2

Here come the second part of the idioms and phrases with the verb "nositi":

  • Koja kokoš mnogo kokodače, malo jaja nosi = he who talks much, does little; the ass that brays most, eats least
Example 1Niko nema prava da gradira vaš (ili bilo čiji) patriotizam. Oni što najviše kokodaču o patriotizmu i trube na sva zvona o veri i tradiciji koje smo mi (kao) napustili, ne znaju ni šta je patriotizam po definiciji. Ima jedna stara izreka (srpska) koja kaže: Koja kokoš mnogo kokodače, malo jaja nosi. Želim vam od srca sve najbolje, gde god da ste, i drago mi je što ste uspeli da se operišete.( a reader's comment on Plus site)
Example 2.Znači dolazeće izbore gubiš. Nikaj konkretnoga od ove vlasti ne očekujem, vrijedi ona stara:koja krava jako muče, malo mlijeka daje. Za aktualne bi se to karikirano:koja kokoš jako kokodače, malo jaja nosi. Pozdrav... (an interesting reader's comment from a Croatian site - za naprednije pratioce bloga: da li ste razumeli slični izraz u kojem se pominje druga domaća životinja, ali sa istim značenjem ? )
  • Nositi svoj krst = to bear one's own share of suffering; to bear one's cross
Example 3Ivan Ivanović: “Svako nosi svoj krst!” (from WannaBeMagazine)
Example 4: An explanation with a fun example sentence in context, from Vukajlija : ... ал' шта сад да радим... свако носи свој крст!"
  • Nositi se mišlju = to intend to do something; to toy with an idea
Example 5Pošto moja naknada za održavanje trudnoće i dalje kasni (5 meseci), ja se nosim mišlju da u sledećoj trudnoći žešće zloupotrebim sistem, jer ovo zaista nema smisla. Idući put ću da otvaram i zatvaram bolovanje do 30 dana sve do 28 dana pred porođaj -- onda niko neće moći da me vuče za nos kao sada.  (from BeBac forum)
Example 6"Ne nosim se mišlju da su gradjani Krusevca rasisti.Nasim gradom slobodno se krecu prpadnici svih manjna pa i oni koji se razlikuju po boji..." (from a FaceBook page)
  • Ne zna se šta nosi dan, a šta noć = don't make hasty judgments;  one never knows what the future may bring


Example 7Srbija je velika tajna by Desanka Maksimović:
Srbija je velika tajna:
Ne zna dan šta noć kuva,
Niti noć šta zora rađa... 

Zadatak za naprednije učenike: Pokušajte da nađete u ovoj pesmi aluziju na još jedan idiom koji smo pominjali u prvom delu
Example 8: Ne zna dan, noć šta nosi ( a theatre review from Politika)
Example 9: ...Neka svako ide svojim putem. To treba postovati. Ja, recimo, da sam zensko, nikada ne bih isao sa kriminalcima, ali se nikad ne zna sta nosi dan, a sta noc(the first reader's comment from Plus)
For more advanced learners of Serbian: One of the idioms quoted in the examples 1 to 9 is inappropriately used. Which one ? 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Serbian Idioms and Phrases with Verb "nositi" - Part 1

If you enjoyed reading the previous post about different meanings of the verb " nositi " in Serbian, I am sure you'll find this list of common phrases and idioms with the same verb quite interesting :

  • Vreme nosi svoje (breme) / sve u svoje vreme (а)= everything is good in its season
The examples are from the various internet sites:
Svako vreme nosi svoje breme koje ga karakteriše i identifikuje. To breme ga u isto vreme razlikuje i čini sličnim prethodnim epohama. Tako i dvadeset prvi vek, poput svojih prethodnika, donosi pregršt pitanja, problema i nedoumica, stavlja ih pred savremenog čoveka kao izazove, kao svojevrsne zadatke koje ovaj treba da reši.
ili
Vreme nosi svoje. Sedamdesetih godina ljudi su se najviše družili sa gitarom i ljudsko uho je bilo neverovatno naklonjeno zvuku tog angažovanog pesničkog izražavanja uz gitaru koja nije tražila nikakva elektronska pomagala.
  • Nositi glavu u torbi (б)= to live in constant danger, to tempt fate, to stick one's neck out. For example: 
Uprkos visokoj sigurnosti bolida Formule 1 i staza, piloti najbržeg cirkusa na svetu ne smatraju se bez razloga najhrabrijim sportistima današnjice koji, iz trke u trku, nose glavu u torbi.
ili
Oni nose glavu u torbi da bi mi bili sigurni. 
  • Zaklati gusku/koku koja nosi zlatna jaja (в) = to destroy a source of income, to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs. For example:
Šta god da se priča, malo je verovatno da će kineski vodji ubiti "koku koja nosi zlatna jaja", odnosno odustati od 9,5 procenata godišnjeg ekonomskog rasta od 1979.
ili
...ova vlada ce nam dati svakome gusku koja nosi zlatna jaja samo da dobiju izbore,a ako dobiju ostaje nam samo perje od guske jer i guska i jaja odose...
  • Nositi zmiju u nedrima & Gajiti guju u nedrima (г) = to befriend a treacherous person, to nurse a viper in one's bosom. For example:
p.s. ovo na dobro ne može da ispadne ima iz istorije poznata epioda koja je sažeta u sintagmi "gajiti zmiju u nedrima Rima"! Taj datum ama baš ništa neće značiti, ja malo pratim medije, i trovanje naroda ponovo ušlo u 4 brzinu.
or
Above the title: "Zmija" u nedrima vlasti 

As you have noticed I added the examples ranging from current affairs articles, folk songs to ordinary people's comments, just to show that these idioms are frequently used. Since there is a list of eight more phrases with the verb "nositi", I'll divide this post into three parts in order to give you as many examples as possible.

Ако учите српски већ дуже време и већ сте на напредном нивоу, сигурно ће вам се свидети вежба да за сваки пример дате различито значење речи "носити" из претходног поста. На пример значење речи "носити", у примеру  а,  је исто као и у примеру б, док је различито од значења у примерима в и г :)

Part 2:
  • Ne zna se šta nosi dan, a šta no
  • Koja kokoš mnogo kokodače, malo jaja nosi
  • Nositi svoj krst
  • Nositi se mišlju
Part 3:
  • Idi gde te (oči vode i) noge nose
  • Pas laje, vetar nosi
  • Plati pa nosi
  • Nositi breme

Thursday, October 3, 2013

What does Verb "Nositi" Mean in Serbian ?

The verb "nositi" in Serbian has many different translations into English :
  • nositi odeću = to wear clothes
  • nositi  torbu   = to carry a bag
  • nositi dete   = to bear a child
  • nositi se sa problemima = to cope with problems
So, while in English there's a multitude of different words representing only one word in Serbian, there's this very productive prefixation system in our language which will make things complicated. But don't worry ! If you start learning the approximate meanings of Serbian suffixes and prefixes, you'll pretty soon be able to infer the meaning from the context, if you know what the basic stem word means. Let me give you an example with the stem " nositi ", as explained above :
  • pre- = over/ across 
  1. prenositi = to carry over, 
  2. preneti dete = to bear a child longer than it is due, 
  3. preneti dete preko bare = to carry a child over a puddle
  • iz- = out of /thoroughly 
  1. izneti torbu = to carry out a bag, 
  2. iznositi odeću = to wear some clothes for years, 
  3. iznošena odeća = worn out clothes
  • u- = into 
  1. uneti torbu u kuću = to bring a bag into a house
  • s- = downward movement /  it also adds perfective aspect (sth. is finished) 
  1. snositi posledice = to bear the consequences
  2. snositi troškove školovanja = to bear the cost of tuition fees (for example)
  • pod - = to 
  1. podnositi buku = to bear the noise (Kako možeš da podneseš ovu užasnu buku = How can you bear this awful noise ?)
  2. podneti ostavku = to submit a resignation
  3. podneti poraz = to accept a defeat
  4. podnositi ( vreme / pritisak...) = to withstand (weather conditions / pressure)
  • od- = signifies the movement from/ out of or in the opposite direction
  1. odneti = to take sth.to (we took the clothes to them = odneli smo im odeću)
In the next post I'll list a few idioms with the verb "nositi". Watch this space!
If you like this type of blog posts, make sure you don't miss the previous ones covering the verbs:
For those of you who are still coping with the basics, here's a simple video with which you can drill present and past simple, saying sentences such as:
  • On nosi ... / ona nosi ... / ono nosi ...
or in the past
  • On je nosio ... / ona je nosila / ono je nosilo ... or
  • Nosio je... / nosila je ... / nosilo je ... (which is more common and neutral word order)
Here comes the video :

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Describing People in Serbian - Part 2

If you liked the first part about how to describe people's age in Serbian, I'm sure you'll enjoy practising following features with the people & places video below:



  • height and build (visina i građa):
  1. ... je prosečne visine = ... is average height.
  2. ... je visok = ... is tall.
  3. ... je nizak = ... is short.
  4. ... je debeo / punačak =... is fat / overweight
  5. ... je mršav = ... is thin
  6. ... je vitak  = ... is slim
 
  • hair (kosa):
  1. duga kosa: ... ima dugu kosu = ...has long hair
  2. kratka kosa: ... ima kratku kosu = ... has short hair
  3. kosa srednje dužine ... ima kosu srednje dužine = ... has medium-length hair
  4. crna kosa ... ima crnu kosu = ...has dark hair
  5. plava kosa ... ima plavu kosu = ... has fair hair
  6. crvena kosa ... ima crvenu kosu = ... has red/ginger hair
  7. (svetlo / tamno) smeđa kosa ... ima (svetlo /tamno ) smeđu kosu = ... has (light / dark) brown hair
  8. seda kosa ... ima sedu kosu = ... has gray hair
  9. kovrdžava kosa ... ima kovrdžavu kosu = ... has curly hair
  10. talasasta kosa ... ima talasastu kosu = ... has wavy hair
  11. ravna kosa ... ima ravnu kosu = ... has straight hair
  12. ... je ćelav = ... is bald
  13. ... je proćelav  ... has a receding hairline.
  14. ...ima šiške (pluralia tantum) = ... has a fringe (in Serbian this word is always in plural, like "vrata"=door)
  15. ...nosi pletenice = ... is wearing her hair in plaits
  16. ...nosi kikice = ... is wearing her hair in pig-tails
  17. ...nosi rep = ... is wearing her hair in a pony-tail
  18. ...nosi puštenu kosu = ...is wearing her hair loose
  19. ...nosi razdeljak (na stranu / u sredini) = ... has a (side / centre) parting
  • complexion (ten)
  1. ...ima taman ten = ...has a dark complexion 
  2. ...ima svetlu put =...has a fair complexion
  3. ... je bled = ...is pale
  4. ... se sunčao = ... has a tanned complexion
  5. ...ima lep ten = ... has a clear /good complexion
  6. ...ima bubuljice /pege  =...has spots / freckles.
  • distinguishing features (karakteristične crte)
  1. ...ima bradu = ...has a beard
  2. ...ima brkove = ... has a moustache
  3. ...je izbrijan =...is clean-shaven
  4. ...ima ožiljak  = ...has a scar
  5. ...ima tetovažu = ... has a tattoo
  6. ...ima guste obrve = ... has bushy eyebrows
  7. ...nosi naočare = ...wears glasses


Thursday, September 26, 2013

European Day of Languages in Serbian

Many thanks to all the faithful followers of this blog for celebrating European Day of Languages every day :) I'm not a big fun of one-day praznik-a, but let me share with you some great resources for learning Serbian which cover this topic:


  • An excellent 2012 video on this topic:


Can you watch it several times, if necessary, and jot down at least three reasons why learning different languages is important, according to the interviewees ?

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Word Order in Serbian - Negation in Present, Part 1.3

If you are following the Word Order in Serbian series of blog posts, you surely remember that the first one was about simple verbs (not -se verbs) in the Present Simple tense. This time, I'll cover the same set of sentences in the same tense, but with their negative forms:

One word verb: NE pevati (not sing)Present tense OF "I sing / I'm singing."

Subject (S) + predicate (P)
  • Ne pevam. N
  • Ja ne pevam
  • Ti igraš, a ja ne pevam. N 
  • Ti ne igraš i ja ne pevam. N 
  • Profesor je čuo kako ne pevam i dao mi je jedinicu ! N
  • Priznajem da ne znam da pevam. N
S + P +  direct object (dO)
  • Ne pevam pesmu. N
  • Ja ne pevam pesmu.
  • Vidiš li  da ne pevam tu pesmu ?  N
  • Svi čuju da ja ne pevam pesmu. 

S  + P + dO + adverb of time (AoT)

  • Ne pevam pesmu svaki dan. N
  • Svaki dan ne pevam pesmu.
  • Moji profesori svaki dan vide kada ne uradim domaći. N

    S + P + dO + AoT + AoP (adverb of place)

    • Ne pevam pesmu svaki dan  kod kuće.  N
    • Ne pevam pesmu kod kuće svaki dan. N
    • Svaki dan ne pevam pesmu kod kuće. N
    • Kod kuće obično ne pevam pesmu. N
    • Moje komšije ponekad ne čuju kada kod kuće pevam pesmu. N
    • Moje komšije obično ne čuju kada  pevam pesmu kod kuće. N
    • Moje komšije ne igraju uz iks-boks dok ja pevam pesme kod kuće svaki dan. N

    I admit that this was pretty boring, but it's good to have lots of similar examples in one place :) I promise the next part with questions, short answers and negations will be real fun !

    Tuesday, September 24, 2013

    Learn about Serbian Verbs with Children's Songs

    Another great song which all the devojčice i dečaci sing is "Ivin voz" by Dragan Laković . It's also perfect to introduce a complex lexical system of the Serbian verb (which mirrors English phrasal verbs as well as perfectve /imperfective aspects ) :



    The Cyrillic script version:
    Ћиху, Ћиху, ћиху-ху...

    Из куће је излетео на улицу Ива
    сав задихан захуктао к'о локомотива.

    Видели га другови, па за њим и они
    потрчали, захуктали к'о прави вагони.

    Ћиху, Ћиху, ћиху-ху...

    Сад улицом тако јури та чудна колона
    то воз Ивин путује са седам вагона.

    The Latin script version:
    Ćihu, Ćihu, ćihu-hu...

    Iz kuće je izleteo na ulicu Iva
    sav zadihan zahuktao k'o lokomotiva.

    Videli ga drugovi, pa za njim i oni
    potrčali, zahuktali k'o pravi vagoni.

    Ćihu, Ćihu, ćihu-hu...

    Sad ulicom tako juri ta čudna kolona
    to voz Ivin putuje sa sedam vagona.



    Interesting verb lexicology:

    • leteti = to fly, IZleteti = to fly out of 
    • huktati = to make a sound like a to train (figuratively: to complain) , ZAhuktati se  = to gather speed (for a train, or when doing something)
    • trčati = to run, POtrčati = to start running
    An exercise covering this topic can be found on this SerbianLesson.com page.


    Monday, September 23, 2013

    Describing People in Serbian - Age

    In part one of this short series of blog posts on how to describe a person in Serbian, I'll cover just how to describe someone's age, and give you lots of sample sentences, so you can try to describe people in the photo below, focusing on their age ( and a little bit on clothes ):

    Godište = Age

    • beba  = baby
    • dete =  child
    • dete koje je tek prohodalo = toddler
    • dečko = boy
    • devojčica = girl
    • tinejdžer = teenager 
    • mladić = young man (short "a")
    • devojka = young woman 
    • omladina = youth
    • čovek u zrelim godinama = middle-aged man
    • žena u zrelim godinama = middle-aged woman 
    • stariji čovek / žena = elderly man/ woman
    • ... ima dvadeset pet godina =... is 25 
    • ...ima tridesetak godina = ... is thirty something
    • ...ima oko četrdeset godina = ... is about forty
    • ...ima pedeset i kusur = ... is fifty odd.
    • ... je u (svojim) ranim / kasnim dvadesetim = ... is in (her /his) early / late twenties

    Primeri = Examples
    Na ovoj slici vidim puno ljudi koji su različitog godišta. S desne strane vidim devojčicu u  ružičastoj suknji i majici, a pored nje je srednjovečni čovek  sa kapom. Ispred njih sedi žena plave kose i proćelavi muškarac, koji deluju kao par u zrelim godinama. Pored njih, s leve strane su dve žene u kasnim dvadesetim. Jedna ima belu majicu bez rukava i crne bermude, a druga nosi ljubičastu majicu bez rukava i plave pantalone. Iza njih s leve strane sedi žena u crvenoj majici kratkih rukava koja ima pedesetak godina i  iza nje je verovatno njen suprug, koji je isto stariji čovek. Pored nje sedi  dečko koji ima oko devet ili deset godina. Oni su na nekom slavlju ili događaju i uglavnom su tu deca ili ljudi u zrelim godinama. Ne vidim uopšte tinejdžere.

    Saturday, September 21, 2013

    Best Sites for Learning Serbian

    In order to persevere with learning the Serbian language you have to be proactive in finding fun and quality material on the internet. In the morning you can work on more demanding materials, such as :

    and in the evenings always flick through some easy, fun and relaxing stuff :

    Thursday, September 19, 2013

    The Meaning of the Verb "slagati se " in Serbian

    Slažu se kao pas i mačka :)
    The verb "slagati se" imperf.(with first "a" being long) /"složiti se" perf.  = to agree * can have a range of different meanings in Serbian and we're going to discuss them today, because I'll need it for my next lesson about Serbian history.

    • If two colours match, we say "slažu se". For example: Plava se slaže sa žutom, ali se ne slaže sa crvenom (slagati se = to match)
    • If a brother and sister get on/along with each other, we say "oni se slažu". For example: Baš imaš sreće, tvoj  brat i ti se dobro slažete. (You are rally lucky, your brother and you get along very well)
    • If you agree to go out with your friend, you will say: "slažem se". For example: Hoćeš li da idemo u restoran večeras ? Važi, slažem se! (Would you like to go to a restaurant tonight ? OK, I agree!)
    • If two people are at each other's throats, i.e." fight like cat(s) and dog(s)" you can similarly describe it in Serbian as "slažu se kao pas i mačka"!
    The simple present tense conjugations of the verb SLAGATI:
    (Sg) Slažem se - slažeš se - slaže se  (Pl) Slažemo se - slažete se - slažu se 

    The past tense verb forms 
    - Imperfective aspect
    ( _ denotes the auxiliary "to be" which shows which person is the sentence referring to)
    (Sg) M slagao _ se, F slagala _ se, N slagalo _  se
    (Pl) M slagali _ se , F slagale _ se, N slagala _ se
    - Perfective aspect:

    ( _ denotes the auxiliary "to be" which shows which person is the sentence referring to)
    (Sg) M složio _ se, F složila _ se, N složilo _  se
    (Pl) M složili _ se , F složile _ se, N složila _ se


    The simple future forms:
    - Imperfective aspect
    (Sg) Slagaću se - slagaćeš se - slagaće se
    (Pl) Slagaćemo se - slagaćete se - slagaće se
    Perfective aspect:
    (Sg) Složiću se - složićeš se - složiće se
    (Pl) Složićemo se - složićeš se - složiće se

    * You might also find the word "slagati" which means "to lie", but the stress pattern is different (with the first  "a" being short) and there is no reflexive " se".
    ** You might also find the word "slagati" with the same  stress pattern as "slagati se" (to agree), but without the reflexive "se". In that case, the verb "slagati" means "to stack things" or " to put things in order" 

    Monday, September 16, 2013

    How to Pronounce Serbian "LJ" ?

    For learners of Serbian as a foreign language often times it's difficult to pronounce the Serbian sound "LJ" or "Љ" correctly. That's because some students tend to pronounce "L" and then "J" separately. If you'd like to make your pronunciation of "lj" perfect, follow these steps:

    1. Try to say "L", as in English word "love". Where is your tongue ? Up or down ?
    2. Try to say "J", as in English word "yes". Where is your tongue ? Up or down ?
    3. Right, so you noticed that in "L" the tongue is up, just behind your upper  teeth, while with "J", the tongue is down. If you want to say "lj" correctly, the tongue mustn't move from the upward position downwards, because it's one sound.
    4. Now, keep your  tongue as if you want to pronounce "J" as in "yes", because it's the right tongue position for the perfect "lj", and at the same time try to pronounce "L", WITHOUT raising your tongue upwards. What happens ? Did you hear your first "lj" ? Now keep practising !
    Keep your tongue low, as if you want to pronounce "J" (as in "yes") sound, but say "L" (as in "love")

    Thursday, September 12, 2013

    Word Order in Serbian - Part 5

    This part is preparing you to practise word order with the words with the reflexive/impersonal pronoun "se". This time I've chosen only the verbs which are widely used when you talking about important life phases, so all the sentences in the videos will be in the Simple Past:
    • roditi se = to be born
    • školovati se = to be schooled
    • upisati se (u školu / na fakultet) = to enrol (a school / university)
    • zaposliti se = to start working / to get a job
    • preseliti se = to move (to another city / country)
    • kvalifikovati se (za) = to get qualified (for)
    • venčati se = to get married
    After practising telling a story about yourself with these phrases:

    ...you can try to do the similar one based on my false biography, so you have to make all the sentences in the exercise negative :)

    Friday, September 6, 2013

    Common Mistakes in Serbian

    One of the most common mistakes students of Serbian as a foreign  language tend to make is to use the verbs of movement "ići " + u, "stići" + u, "vratiti se" + u, "posetiti" with the noun in Dative, instead of Accusative. That's why it's often heard:
    Idem u Beogradu (incorrect)
    instead of
    Idem u Beograd (correct)
    In the case of the listed verbs above (ići = to go to/ stići = to arrive at/ vratiti se = to come back to /posetiti = to visit), the noun which follows them is in the Accusative case (so called the Accusative of goal/aim).

    That's why I've created this video with which you can make simple sentences such as:


    Thursday, September 5, 2013

    Word Order in Serbian - Part 4.5

    Now that you've learnt the introductory song by heart (napamet), you are ready for more examples with the word order of the sentences with reflexive or impersonal "se". This time I'll cover the word order in the Simple Present tense with all three forms, affirmative, negative and questions. So, let's start :

    Reflexive -se: oblačiti se  (to get dressed) Present tense of OBLAČITI SE is :


    Affirmative sentences : Subject (S) + predicate (P)

    • Oblačim se. N
    • Ja se  oblačim. 
    • Ti se igraš, a ja se oblačim. N 
    • Sedi i gledaj TV dok se ja oblačim. N 
    • Komšije su videle kako se (ja) oblačim u kuhinji. N 
    • Priznajem da se oblačim u kuhinji. N

    Negations: Subject (S) + NE + predicate (P)
    • Ne oblačim se. N
    • Ja se ne  oblačim. 
    • Ti se ne igraš, a ja se ne oblačim. N 
    • Sedi i gledaj TV dok se ja ne oblačem. N 
    • Tvrdila sam da se ne oblačim u kuhinji. N 
    • Priznajem da se ne oblačim u kuhinji. N

    Questions: Subject (S) +  predicate (P)
    • Da li se oblačiš ? N
    • Da li se ti oblačiš ? 
    • Oblačiš li se
    • Jel' se oblačiš ? N
    • Kada se oblačiš ? N
    • Kada se ti oblačiš ? N

    S + P + AoT(adverb of time) + AoP (adverb of place)

    • Oblačim se svaki dan u kuhinji. N
    • Svaki dan se oblačim u kuhinji. N
    • (I'm not listing all the other combinations as they are not neutral)
    • Moje komšije su čule da se oblačim u kuhinji svaki dan. N
    • Moje komšije su čule da se svaki dan oblačim u kuhinji. N
    • (I'm not listing all the other combinations as they are not neutral)

    Wednesday, September 4, 2013

    Past Tense in Serbian

    Let's make a short comparison of the Present Simple and Past Simple in Serbian with this "drinks video" :)


    • Šta obično piješ / pijete tokom dana ?
    • Šta obično piješ / pijete kada izađeš uveče ?
    • Šta si juče pio  / pila ? / Šta ste juče pili ?*




    *translation:

    • What do you usually drink during the day ? ("piješ" informal, "pijete" formal)
    • What do you usually drink when you go out at night ?
    • What did you drink yesterday ? ("pio" for masculine singular, "pila" for feminine singular, "pili" for the second person singular, used formally, or for the second person plural, when you are talking to more people)


    Monday, September 2, 2013

    Asking Questions in Serbian - Present Simple

    Let me show you one more video in the series called Easy Texts in Serbian. This time you have to ask direct questions about the word which is in red.

    For example: "Zovem se Tanja" - your task is to ask:

    • "Kako se zoveš ?" informal 
    • "Kako se zovete ?" formal



















    For the following questions start with these question words:

    • Gde ... (where)
    • Kako ... (how) 
    • Koliko godina ... (how old)
    • Kakvi ...  (what...like)

    Thursday, August 29, 2013

    Idioms and Common Phrases in Serbian

    After publishing yesterday's post it struck me that you might not  be aware of the  meaning of the phrase "ravno mi je sve".That's why I chose the word RAVAN = flat / even / equal as the topic of today's post:








    • nekome je sve ravno ( do Kosova )= it's all the same ; it makes no difference
    example: Uradi kako ti je drago - meni je sve ravno (do Kosova) ! 
    translation: Do as you please - it makes no difference to me !

    example from the song: Ravno mi je sve : because of the word "mi" this phrase means that he is indifferent, while the sentence before he means literally "ravno, nigde brda" = flat, no hill around 
    • ravan kao dlan = as flat as a pancake 
    example: Vojvodina je ravna kao dlan. (Vojvodina is as flat as a pancake.)
    • na ravnoj nozi = on an equal footing; on equal terms
    example: Razgovarali smo o svemu na ravnoj nozi (We talked about everything on equal terms)
    • na ravne časti = share and share alike; even Stephen 
    example: Sve što zaradimo delimo na ravne časti (Everything we earn we share and share alike)
    • nema mu ravna = without a peer; second to none
    example: Kao lekaru nema mu ravna (As a doctor he is second to none.) 

    Wednesday, August 28, 2013

    Word Order with "se" in Serbian

    Here comes a gentle introduction to the fourth part of the series of blog posts about the word order in Serbian. Why introduction in the middle of the story ? Because I'm about to write about the verbs with (reflexive) -se: "vratiti se " = "to come back", for example.

    Listen to this beautiful song and try to figure out which word is missing in the following lines:


    Od Banata prema Sremu nisko oblaci,
    noć __ spustila, pa ___ ne vidi...
    samo moje misli po ravnici putuju -
    ja ih pošaljem al ___ vraćaju...
    A ti, a ti ___ nećeš vratiti....
    To je bilo davno, pa ___  niko ne seća -
    rode nestale jednog proleća...
    vratiće __ , kažu ljudi, ove godine...
    ove godine il dogodine...
    A ti, a ti ___ nećeš vratiti....

    REFREN:
    Ravno, nigde brda, sve je ravno - ravno mi je sve,
    jer u tvome srcu već odavno drugi stanuje...
    Ej,kad bi znala ti...(kad bi samo znala ti)
    koliko trebaš mi!

    Hajde noći tiho, tiše, sitni tonovi,
    da ____  nikome to ne ponovi...
    bruje zice, srce trne, grom te pogodi-
    to ___  dogodi il ne (__) dogodi....
    A ti na belom perju zaspi mi...

    REFREN

    Tuesday, August 27, 2013

    Studying Serbian with Songs

    One of the most beautiful Serbian oldtown songs is surely "Što se bore misli moje"



     Let me link two stories about this song:
    Nakon čitanja ova dva teksta da li možete da donesete zaključak ko je autor ove pesme  i obrazložite vaš odgovor ?

    Monday, August 26, 2013

    Talking about Yourself in Serbian

    In the previous post with easy Serbian texts, you were able to learn a few facts about Branko and his family.

    Today's exercise is from the same Serbian 101 course, but this time your job is to look at the photo with some facts about Milan, and then make a short story and tell it along with this video:

    Sunday, August 25, 2013

    Accidents and Emergencies - Vocabulary and Phrases in Serbian

    I've recently received a very practical question : how to call for help in Serbian and  what to say in case of  an accident / theft and similar. So, let me give you a few ideas for three different topics, which hopefully you won't need at all:

    • Policija / milicija (police)
    1. Policajac (police officer)
    2. Advokat (lawyer)
    3. Prestup (violation)
    4. Prekršaj (offence)
    5. Zovite policiju ! (call the police)
    • Prolbemi
    1. Novčanik (wallet)
    2. Lopov (thief)
    3. Provalnik (burglar)
    4. Izgubljene stvari (lost property)
    5. Ukrasti (to steal)
    6. Izgubiti (to lose)
    7. Zaboraviti (to forget)
    8. Zaboravio sam ključ (I forgot my key)
    9. Izgubio sam ključ (I lost my key)
    10. Neko mi je ukrao pare / novac (Somebody stole my money)
    11. Upomoć ! (Help)
    • Nesrećan slučaj (accident)
    1. Kvar (breakdown)
    2. Služba za hitnu popravku (emergency breakdown service)
    3. Sudar (accident, collision)
    4. Osiguranje (insurance)
    5. Automobil mi se pokvario (my car has broken down)
    6. Vaše osiguranje (Your insurance documents)
    7. Prijaviti sudar (to report an accident)
    8. To je vaša krivica (it's your fault )

    Wednesday, August 21, 2013

    Beginner Serbian - New Lesson with Exercises


    In the previous post about easy texts in Serbian, I said that I wasn't very happy with the quality of the audio recording. Today, when I tried to fix it, I ended up changing the video structure and creating 3 more videos for you to practise. I'm sure you'll like this new version more and that the previous one. If you are a real beginner in Serbian, you can take a look at the vocabulary list while watching the video:




    1. OVO = THIS
    1. JE = IS
    1. OVO JE = THIS IS...
    1. BRAT = BROTHER
    1. SESTRA = SISTER
    1. MUŽ = HUSBAND
    1. ŽENA = WIFE
    1. LEP = BEAUTIFUL (Fem: lepa)
    1. MLAD = YOUNG (Fem: mlada)
    1. RUŽAN = UGLY (Fem: ružna)
    1. STAR = OLD (Fem: stara)
    1. VISOK = TALL (Fem: visoka)
    1. NIZAK = SHORT (Fem: niska)
    1. IMATI = TO HAVE
    1. GODINA = YEARS
    1. DETE = CHILD, DECA  = CHILDREN
    1. BLIZANCI  = TWINS
    1. JOŠ = STILL
    1. MALI = YOUNG / LITTLE / SMALL
    1. PAS = DOG
    *** POSSESSIVE ADJECTIVES ***
    • MOJ -mojA sestrA - mojE detE - mojI prijateljI - mojE prijateljicE - mojA decA
    • TVOJ
    • NJEGOV
    • NJEN
    • NJEGOV
    • NJIHOV
    • NJIHOV
    • NJIHOV


    Exercise 1 - Verbs are missing. You can mute the video in order to do the exercise on your own.

    Exercise 2 - Make a similar story about your family.

    LinkWithin

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