Alternative name(s): Cesky (cs), checo (es), Tsjechisch (nl), tjeckiska (sv)
Language family: Indo-European
Language group: Slavic
Geographical use: Czech Republic (=Bohemia, Moravia and Silezia)
Information: Czech is closely related to Slovak. The most important differences between both languages can be found in syntax and pronunciation. Of the other Slavic languages Czech differs mostly by the characteristic intonation of the sentence, the stress on the first syllable, the use of the Roman alphabet instead of cyrillic, and the unusual free word order.
Before the 11th century the Czech wrote in Old
Church Slavic, the first Slavic literary language. In the 11th century
two important linguistic events took place. In the west Old
Church Slavic was replaced by Latin for clerical and literary use,
and the regional Slavic dialects started to develop into independent languages.
Nevertheless, for some centuries Czech remained a hated and suppressed farmer’s language until in the 14th century the Bohemian religeous reformer Jan Hus standardized the Czech spelling. In the 15th and 16th centuries a protestant sect, calling itself the Moravian Brothers, adopted this spelling. The writings of this sect were of paramount importance to the Czech language. In 1593 the Bible was translated into Czech. Since that time Czech has not changed a lot.
Current Czech has seven cases, three verb persons, three times (present, past and future) and three moods (indicative, imperative and conditional).