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Old February 14th, 2014, 05:00 PM   #9721
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Hassle free border crossing. Not the case anymore

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South Africa - Swaziland Border on 20th August,1972

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Old February 14th, 2014, 10:17 PM   #9722
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"The Ukraine" was normal until the Soviet Union broke up. "Ukraine" without "the" started then, supposedly Ukrainians (actual Ukrainians and specifically their government, as opposed to Ukrainian-Americans and Ukrainian-Canadians) thought the usage without "the" was more appropriate for an independent country. (Just like Burma at one point asked everyone to start saying "Myanmar." I still say Burma. But I'm sure official usage in the U.S. - in the State Department, in the media - is "Myanmar.") I hear Ukraine more often without the "the" these days, at least in the media, but it still sounds a little strange to me.
"The Ukraine" sounds strange to me, because I didn't speak English in times of the USSR and probably didn't know about (the) Ukraine or the USSR anyway. As for Burma/Myanmar: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burma#Etymology.

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How well guarded by the Yugoslavian army was Nova Gorica? Was the area forbidden for other Yugoslavian citizens not living there, like border areas of DDR and Hungary were?
You mean, if I was allowed to go to Nova Gorica? Yes, I was.

Last edited by Verso; February 14th, 2014 at 10:24 PM.
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Old February 14th, 2014, 11:52 PM   #9723
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The Ukraine is wrong, because it was used in previous times to refer to a vague area inhabited by Ukrainians. I seem to recall that it also has implications of still being under Russian rule, too. But as Ukraine is a clearly defined independent state these days, the country is clearly just Ukraine and not The Ukraine.

Speaking of Nova Gorica - does anyone know if Slovenian is spoken by Italians?
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Old February 15th, 2014, 12:48 AM   #9724
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The Ukraine is wrong, because it was used in previous times to refer to a vague area inhabited by Ukrainians. I seem to recall that it also has implications of still being under Russian rule, too. But as Ukraine is a clearly defined independent state these days, the country is clearly just Ukraine and not The Ukraine.
But the same holds for the Bahamas or the Gambia.

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Speaking of Nova Gorica - does anyone know if Slovenian is spoken by Italians?
Which Italians? There're almost no Italians living in Nova Gorica.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 01:14 AM   #9725
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The "like" is for the rosbifs. Which somehow reminds me of a recent Top Gear sequence I'll have to look for.

I've just mentioned referring to the Congos by their capitals, but people don't seem to do that these days. At least not that I've heard (given that I was unaware of non-English uses of "British Isles," this may indicate I need to get out more.)

"The Ukraine" was normal until the Soviet Union broke up. "Ukraine" without "the" started then, supposedly Ukrainians (actual Ukrainians and specifically their government, as opposed to Ukrainian-Americans and Ukrainian-Canadians) thought the usage without "the" was more appropriate for an independent country. (Just like Burma at one point asked everyone to start saying "Myanmar." I still say Burma. But I'm sure official usage in the U.S. - in the State Department, in the media - is "Myanmar.") I hear Ukraine more often without the "the" these days, at least in the media, but it still sounds a little strange to me.

EDIT: Here's that Top Gear video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzo1ua9scjA
Actually I think official use by the US State Department is "Burma", just to piss off those generals, something which I wholeheartedly support

You're right about Congo though - thinking about it now I hear "Republic of Congo" (bad one) and the "Democratic Republic of Congo / DRC" (even worse one)

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- more seriously: both Congo's have always (at least as long as I live) been called Congo and Congo-Brazza: more was not necessary to distinguish them (even in times of Zaïre)
But, only "Congo" for Belgian Congo, might have been only used commonly en Belgique?
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Old February 15th, 2014, 04:00 AM   #9726
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yes, maybe
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:18 AM   #9727
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Which Italians? There're almost no Italians living in Nova Gorica.
I wrote that when half asleep - I meant Gorizia

I'm trying to think of a place bordering a Slavic country where the locals (speaking a non-Slavic language) understand the Slavic language spoken on the other side. Any ideas?
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:26 AM   #9728
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AFAIK very few Italian-speaking Gorizians also speak Slovene.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 01:39 PM   #9729
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I'm trying to think of a place bordering a Slavic country where the locals (speaking a non-Slavic language) understand the Slavic language spoken on the other side. Any ideas?
Mohács in Hungary perhaps? I remember (though a long time ago) seeing there many advertisements in Croatian for people from Croatia coming there for shopping. I suppose they should understand some Croatian.

And Kosovo? I think that many people, especially older ones, can speak or understand Serbian.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 01:46 PM   #9730
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Mohács in Hungary perhaps? I remember (though a long time ago) seeing there many advertisements in Croatian for people from Croatia coming there for shopping. I suppose they should understand some Croatian.
exactly. actually, i don't know for Mohács (although I know 2 persons from Mohács speaking very good croatian), but people in southern Zala and southern Somogy counties spoke croatian for commercial reasons (the shopping, which you have mentioned). i don't know if they can still speak it, or it was only when we were extensively going to shopping to Hungary
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Old February 15th, 2014, 05:12 PM   #9731
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Originally Posted by Eulanthe View Post
I'm trying to think of a place bordering a Slavic country where the locals (speaking a non-Slavic language) understand the Slavic language spoken on the other side. Any ideas?
I guess a lot of people in the non-Slavic parts of the former Soviet Union - especially those over the age of 30 - speak Russian.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 06:02 PM   #9732
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Originally Posted by g.spinoza View Post
AFAIK very few Italian-speaking Gorizians also speak Slovene.
Only ethnic Slovenes probably.

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exactly. actually, i don't know for Mohács (although I know 2 persons from Mohács speaking very good croatian), but people in southern Zala and southern Somogy counties spoke croatian for commercial reasons (the shopping, which you have mentioned). i don't know if they can still speak it, or it was only when we were extensively going to shopping to Hungary
Maybe you met Somogy Slovenes.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 08:16 PM   #9733
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Originally Posted by g.spinoza View Post
AFAIK very few Italian-speaking Gorizians also speak Slovene.
It's absolutely true, on the other hand, many Slovenes living near the Italian border learned some basic Italian.
Around 60-90k residents in Friuli-Venezia Giulia are Italo-Slovenian bilingual and there are even Slovenian-language schools in border areas. However they're native speakers, not Italians who learned the language later.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slovene_minority_in_Italy

Percentage of Slovenian speakers in Friuli-Venezia Giulia border area:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...cipalities.png
(pic too large to be embedded)

I never had problems to communicate in Italians with attendants in shops, restaurants and gas stations in places like Nova Gorica, Sezana,... On the other hand, the average, native Italian, Gorizia resident, living 1km from the border, probably doesn't know more than "gostlina", "dobrodosli", "ulica", "avtocesta" and, unfortunately, since 2008, "vinjeta"

(I guess that also not many people from Tarvisio do speak German and not many people from Arndolstein do speak Italian. And don't many Ventimiglia residents are fluent in French and don't many Menton residents are fluent in Italian.)
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In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.

Last edited by italystf; February 15th, 2014 at 08:25 PM.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:01 PM   #9734
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But the same holds for the Bahamas or the Gambia.

Which Italians? There're almost no Italians living in Nova Gorica.
"The Bahamas" are islands. You need a "the." I guess "the Gambia" is called that because it's named after a river. Just like "the Bronx," in New York City, is short for "Borough of the Bronx [River]."

Non-native speakers of English - even national governments - don't get to say what's "wrong" in English: they have absolutely no authority. (Seriously: if Germany demanded that English-speakers start saying "Deutschland," or France demanded we stop pronouncing the S in "Paris," would we do it? Of course not. Language doesn't work that way. So why should it be different for Burma or the Ukraine?)
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:05 PM   #9735
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Actually I think official use by the US State Department is "Burma", just to piss off those generals, something which I wholeheartedly support

You're right about Congo though - thinking about it now I hear "Republic of Congo" (bad one) and the "Democratic Republic of Congo / DRC" (even worse one)



But, only "Congo" for Belgian Congo, might have been only used commonly en Belgique?
We used to call one of them "Congo" and the other "the Congo," but damned if I can remember which was which.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:26 PM   #9736
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So why should it be different for Burma or the Ukraine?)
The Ukraine is simply not the name of the country, just like Zaire is not used anymore for DR Congo, or Siam for Thailand. Names can change Stubbornly keeping it calling "The" Ukraine will simply be seen as another act of ignorance.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:45 PM   #9737
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The Ukraine is simply not the name of the country, just like Zaire is not used anymore for DR Congo, or Siam for Thailand. Names can change Stubbornly keeping it calling "The" Ukraine will simply be seen as another act of ignorance.
But at the same time, we always say "the Netherlands" to say NL. Is it because of the plural (which is awkward), or have the Dutch simply not complained about it because the use of "Holland" to refer to entire NL more annoying and so all attention is given to that?

As for Zaire, first was Congo, then Zaire then Congo again. Maybe we should not bother to change as we will become right again anyhow

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Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
"The Bahamas" are islands. You need a "the." I guess "the Gambia" is called that because it's named after a river. Just like "the Bronx," in New York City, is short for "Borough of the Bronx [River]."

Non-native speakers of English - even national governments - don't get to say what's "wrong" in English: they have absolutely no authority. (Seriously: if Germany demanded that English-speakers start saying "Deutschland," or France demanded we stop pronouncing the S in "Paris," would we do it? Of course not. Language doesn't work that way. So why should it be different for Burma or the Ukraine?)
At least in English. Some other languages have some kind of government body decreeing what is "correct" all the time, like the French, or the time the German one deemed the eszett illegal (they will pry my eszett from my cold dead hands! )
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Last edited by Kanadzie; February 15th, 2014 at 10:52 PM.
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Old February 15th, 2014, 10:53 PM   #9738
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Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
The Ukraine is simply not the name of the country, just like Zaire is not used anymore for DR Congo, or Siam for Thailand. Names can change Stubbornly keeping it calling "The" Ukraine will simply be seen as another act of ignorance.
Of course they can change. They change through the usage of educated native speakers, over time. Not by legislation and not instantaneously.

(I didn't say, I don't think, a couple of pages back, that I actually say "the Ukraine," just that it sounds weird without the "the." If I actually had to use it in writing for work, I'd leave the "the" out. But that's not going to come up all that often, if ever. A century from now, there will presumably be no English-speakers left to whom it sounds odd without the "the.")

Wiki led me to this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18233844

Your tolerance of the off-topic is appreciated, by the way. (Speaking only for myself....)
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Old February 15th, 2014, 11:00 PM   #9739
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(I didn't say, I don't think, a couple of pages back, that I actually say "the Ukraine," just that it sounds weird without the "the."
It's a matter of habituation I suppose. The Russia or The Germany sounds weird.

Here's an interesting read about "The" Ukraine:
http://www.businessinsider.com/why-u...rs-now-2013-12
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Old February 15th, 2014, 11:05 PM   #9740
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The Germany sounds weird.
The Frigging Republic of Germany sounds good .
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