British linguist Danny Bate divides his time between Prague and Edinburgh, where he is completing a PhD. Given his academic background, the 26-year-old has many fascinating things to say on the Czech language, which he himself is studying. But I also asked Bate – who, incidentally, helps shape Czechia’s “maturita” school-leaving exam – about his experience of living in the country to date.
You speak Czech, you have a Czech fiancée. Which came first, your partner or your interest in the language?
“The partner. Like so many people, it was love that brought me here. It’s often such a common story, I think it’s not very interesting for other people [laughs].
“But yes, my partner and I met in England, many, many years ago now. Essentially we both finished our degrees in the UK, and having run out of things to do, I came over to be with her in the Czech Republic.”
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Author: Ian Willoughby