Word of the Day

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Suit (cards) in Slavic languages

Czech has only one word, barva (believe it or not, from German Farbe), meaning color and suit (in cards). But the strange thing is that there are two colors as far as I can tell, red and black, and four suits: spades, diamonds, hearts and clubs. I wonder if this can't be confusing sometimes. But Czech isn't alone: Polish uses kolor for both color and suit, and Russian is similar, with масть for both suit and color. I wonder if Slavs get in quibbles more often than other nations when playing cards.

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