Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Building vocabulary

We're all familiar with these rather pedantic signs, the international  icons of the health-and-safety brigade, but you may not have seen them in Czech before. Although they may be good for little else, notices like these are nevertheless one way to pick up some useful vocab. So here goes. From left to right, visitors are reminded to use protective gear at all times, to enter only if wearing a hard hat, and that unauthorized entry is forbidden; and on the bottom row, that there's a danger of injury, danger in the area of the crane, and danger of falling down holes.

The most useful word here for everyday use is 'nebezpeči' (danger). 'Bezpeči' from 'bez' (without) and péče (care) is the exact equivalent of the French 'sans souci', so the word for danger means, literally, 'not-without-care'. An interesting technical term is 'jeřáb'. Just like English 'crane' and French 'grue', the word refers to both the bird that stands on one leg and its mechanical equivalent used in construction.

This notice is fixed to the metal hoarding around the splendid 19th century pile known as the Rangherka, which dominates Vršovice Square (Vršovické Náměstí) and is currently being converted into accommodation for the elderly. The original plan, for a hotel and restaurant, was put on the back burner after the global financial crisis caused a fall in tourist numbers, but there is still some debate as to how a project as big as this will pay its way.

Today's City Daily Photo theme is 'Under Construction'. Click here to view thumbnails for all participants


Valladolid Daily Photo said...

Safety comes first. I love the second one.

Mo said...

We were both attracted to signs today

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