krompir

Translation: potato

Krompir is found in many Slovenian dishes either as the main or side dish. Basic potato side dishes are:

pečen krompir – baked potato
pomfrit – French fries
tenstan krompir – mashed potato
pire – puree

Examples:

Mami, kaj bo za kosilo? – Juha, meso in krompir.
(Mom, what will we have for lunch? – A soup, meat, and potato.)

Zaradi deževnega poletja bo letošnja letina krompirja slaba.
(This year’s potato crop will be bad because of the rainy summer.)

Krompir je hrana revežev.
(Potato is the food of the poor.)

Expressions:

imeti krompir
(do be lucky; lit. to have potato)

Neumen kmet ima debel krompir.
(the less you think the better you will do in life; lit. A stupid farmer has/grows fat potatoes.)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

Extra:

The love for tenstan krompir, also known as pražen (roasted) krompir, has somehow escalated completely in Slovenia. There is a society (Društvo praženega krompirja) taking this kind of potato very seriously. They claim that their recipe is the official recipe and they organize festivals where the main dish is… tenstan krompir. It is all just as silly as you imagine.

Tenstan ali pražen krompir. Source

vas

A typical village in Slovenia. Source

Translation: village

The straightforward translation of vas is village. However, you will encounter this word a lot in a completely different setting: vas is also an object pronoun, used in two different roles:

2nd person plural

Videl sem vas hoditi po cesti.
(I saw (multiple) you walking down the road.)

Ne slišim vas!
(I don´t hear (multiple) you!)

The formal version of the 2nd person singular (see also Extra)

Gospod Novak, dolgo vas že nisem videl.
(Mr Novak, I haven´t seen you for a long time.)

Gospod Novak, vabimo Vas na sestanek članov odbora.
(Mr Novak, we invite you to a meeting of the board members.)

Examples:

Življenje na vasi je idilično.
(Village life is idyllic.)

Z vasi je prišel v mesto.
(He came from a village to the town.)

Novica se je hitro razširila po vasi.
(The news has spread quickly throughout the village.)

Vas ima sto prebivalcev.
(The village has a hundred dwellers.)

Expressions:

Zame je španska vas.
(it´s all Greek to me; lit. For me it is a Spanish village; note that another version with the same meaning is deveta vas, which translates into “ninth village”)

Dober glas seže v deveto vas.
(what is good, or of good quality, is famous very far away; lit. – a good voice reaches to the ninth village)

Related:

zaselek – hamlet
mesto – town
velemesto – city

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

Extra:

You address other people formally when you want to show respect. Typically you would use this form when talking with someone you don´t know or someone older you know, but not well enough to be on a friendly basis. In writing you can be extremely formal by capitalize it (Vas instead of vas). In Slovenia, this formal address is still very common and even expected; forgetting to use it in certain situations is considered rude.

povprečen

Translation: average, mean, mediocre [adj]

Examples:

Povprečna dnevna temperatura bo enaindvajset stopinj Celzija.
(The average temperature during the day will be twenty-one degrees centigrade.)

Tukaj so meritve. Izračunajte njihovo povprečje.
(Here are the measurements. Calculate their average.)

Njegovo življenje je precej povprečno.
(His life is quite mediocre.)

Prebral sem vaše poročilo. Žal mi je, ampak je podpovprečno. Razočaran sem.
(I read your report. I am sorry, but it is below standards. I am disappointed.)

Related:

povprečje – average [noun, n]
nadpovprečen – above average (above standards)
podpovprečen – below average (below standards)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

gladek

Translation: smooth, slippery, easy [adj]

Examples:

Spodrsnilo mu je na gladkem ledu.
(He slipped on slippery ice.)

Z dlanjo je podrsala po gladki površini.
(With her hand she brushed the smooth surface.)

Danes si imel izpit, kajne? Kako ti je šlo? – V redu, vse je šlo gladko.
(You had the exam today, right? How did it go? – OK, everything went smoothly.)

Expressions:

(nekdo) ni gladek
((someone) is crazy; Lit. (someone) is not smooth)

Veš, kaj mi je rekel včeraj? Da je revščina stvar odločitve. Ta tip res ni gladek.
(You know what he said to me yesterday? That poverty is a choice. That guy is crazy.)

Related:

spolzek – slippery (more slippery than gladek)
glad – hunger
lakota – hunger

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

zemljevid

Translation: map [noun, m]

The word zemljevid is composed of Zemlja (Earth) and vid (sight).

Examples:

Tukaj je zemljevid. Mi lahko pokažeš kje se nahaja Nizozemska?
(Here is the map. Can you show me the location of the The Netherlands?)

Haha, oblika Slovenije na zemljevidu me spominja na kuro.
(Haha, the shape of Slovenia on the map reminds me of a hen. Note – an alternative and less colloquial word for kura is kokoš.)

Poleti sem obiskal Pariz. Mesto je ogromno! Ne vem, kaj bi brez zemljevida.
(I visited Paris in the summer. The city is huge! I don’t know what I would do without a map.)

Expressions:

(nekaj) ni na zemljevidu
((something) is not recognized, or skips attention, of another person or organization; lit. (something) is not on the map)

Najnovejša lestvica 500 najboljših univerz: Slovenije ni na zemljevidu
(The newest list of the 500 best universities: Slovenia is not to be found there. Note – this is a title taken from a newspaper article)

Related:

zemljepisna širina – latitude
zemljepisna dolžina – longitude
zemljepis – geography (often the term “geografija” is used)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

copati

Translation: slippers

Slovenians usually don’t wear shoes in their homes – we wear copate. It is also common to have a few spare pairs at home in case we get visitors. The comfortable footwear looks like this:

Copate. Source

Note that športni copati refers to sneakers or gym shoes.

Examples:

Nikjer ne najdem svojih copat.
(I can’t find my slippers anywhere.)

Rok, obuj copate, da se ne prehladiš!
(Rok, put on some slippers, so that you don’t get a cold!)

Expressions:

biti copata
(to be henpecked, lit. – to be a slipper)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

Extra:

One of the most famous fairytales among Slovenian children is “Muca copatarica“. It is about a cat who hides slippers of those children who don’t lay their slippers neatly next to their bed (but rather leave them carelessly lying around the room).

You can give the fairytale a try here: wiki

The book is beautifully illustrated. Source

stanovanje

Translation: apartment, flat

Slovenian makes a distinction between stanovanje (an apartment) and hiša (a house). However, note that a verb stanovati (to reside) applies to both situations.

Examples:

V petek se selim v novo stanovanje.
(I am moving to a new apartment on Friday.)

Kje pa ti stanuješ?
(And where do you live? Note: pa emphasizes the pronoun ti)

Ne morem si privoščiti stanovanja v Ljubljani – je predrago!
(I can’t afford an apartment in Ljubljana – it is too expensive!)

Lastnik stanovanja išče najemnika.
(The owner of the apartment is looking for a tenant.)

Proverbs:

Ljubo doma, kdor ga ima.
(Home sweet home.)

Povsod je lepo, doma je najlepše.
(There’s no place like home.)

Related:

stanovati – to reside (in a house or apartment)
vseliti se – to move in
seliti se – being in a process of moving to a new house; to migrate
dom – home

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

Extra:

A random song titled “Ljubo doma“. A good practice to listen to a song with Slovenian lyrics (lyrics is also provided under the video!).

Try to follow the lyrics in Slovenian.

račun

I’ve been there…

Translation:
1. bill, invoice
2. account
3. calculation

Whether you go for a coffee, open an account, or help your kid with math homework– račun and its derivatives (see Related) will accompany you on every step.

Examples:

Natakar, račun, prosim!
(Waiter, a bill, please!)

Račun za elektriko je ta mesec precej visok.
(The electricity bill is quite high this month.)

Ne morem verjeti! Podjetje mi še vedno ni nakazalo denarja na moj račun!
(I can’t believe it! The company still hasn’t deposited the money on my account!)

Otroci, rešite ta račun.
(Children, solve this calculation.)

Računanje je igra.
(Calculation is a game. Note: this is a title of a popular textbook with math exercises.)

Expressions:

bogateti na tuj račun
(to make fortune on other’s account / expense; see also tuj)

račun brez krčmarja
(a failure of a task, because all circumstances haven’t been taken into account)

priti na svoj račun
(to reach a goal or to become satisfied)

Nogometna tekma je bila super–obiskovalci so prišli na svoj račun.
(The football match was great–the spectators were very satisfied by it.)

poravnati stare račune
(to settle old responsibilities or debts)

Related:

računati – to calculate (imperfect)
izračunati – to calculate (perfect)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

strah

Translations:
– fear, fright [noun, m]
– spook, ghost [noun, m]
– to express fear of something (see examples); an alternative, but less strong form of “to be afraid” is bati se

Examples:

Strah pred pajki ga je popolnoma ohromil.
(Fear of spiders completely paralyzed him.)

Česa te je strah?
(What are you afraid of?)

Strah me je.
(I’m afraid.)

Otroci se bojijo strahov.
(Children are afraid of ghosts.)

Expressions:

Strah ima velike oči.
(If one is afraid of something, then he finds it much more terrifying than it actually is. – lit. fear has big eyes)

pognati komu strah v kosti
(to scare someone – lit. to put someone fear in their bones)

S svojo veliko postavo in grozljivim izrazom je tekmecem pognal strah v kosti.
(He scared the competitors with his big figure and horrifying expression.)

Strah je votel, okoli pa ga nič ni.
(Fear is only in your head. lit. – Fear is hollow, and there’s nothing around it.)

Related:

prestrašen – afraid [adj, m]
duh – ghost [noun, m]
bati se – to be afraid

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.

dež

Translation: rain [noun, m]

A useful word, given that weather is the #1 small talk topic. See also related words.

Examples:

Dež je prekinil dirko.
(Rain has interrupted the race.)

Na severu države bo danes deževalo.
(It is going to rain today in the north of the country.)

Sara, danes bo deževalo. Vzemi dežnik!
(Sara, it is going to rain today. Take an umbrella!)

Expressions:

Priti z dežja pod kap.
(To come from a bad situation to a worse one. – lit. To come from the rain under the edge of a roof.)

rasti kot gobe po dežju
(To grow fast, to spread fast. – lit. to grow like mushrooms after rain)

V tem mestu trgovine rastejo kot gobe po dežju.
(Stores are spreading really fast in this city.)

Related:

deževen – rainy
deževati – to rain
dežnik – umbrella [noun, m]

Extra:

We tend to forget that rain can also be fun! A nice children’s poem describes that well:

Dežek pada cele dni,
še ponoči nam rosi,
in namaka luže tri.
V prvi luži žabica,
v drugi luži račkica,
v tretji luži sem pa jaz-
vsi kričimo na ves glas!

(Disclaimer: a horrible literal translation, but fortunately you are here to learn Slovenian, not to study poetry!

It is raining for many (lit. whole) days,
even in the night it drizzles,
filling up three puddles.
A (little) frog in the first puddle,
A duckie in the second,
and me in the third-
we all scream our heads off!

)

Listen to the pronunciation of Slovenian words and phrases.