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  Future Tense

The Czech language offers two ways of making future tense constructions:

- by changing the verb (usually by adding a prefix and changing the stem)

- by using the following construction:
   TO BE (in future tense) + infinitive of the verb

Here are some tips on when to use which:

1) Sometimes the choice depends on the particular verb. Some verbs require only one of the two possible ways to form future tense - e.g. the future tense of "I will go" is always "pojedu" (by car) or "půjdu" (on foot), never "budu jet", "budu jít".

2) Sometimes both constructions can be used with the same verb but each of them can add a slightly different meaning to the sentence.

Example for "I will talk to him":

"Budu s ním mluvit" is a neutral way to say that you will be talking to someone (e.g. "I'll be talking to him on Sunday because he's coming to the party").

"Promluvím si s ním" sounds more like you will be talking to someone about a particular thing, issue, etc. You will make a point of talking to him (e.g. "I'll go over to his office and make sure that I talk to him about ...").

3) And then there is the issue of the "verb aspect" ("slovesný vid" in Czech), which has to do with the action the verb describes. There are two "verb aspects" in Czech - "dokonavý" (used for a one-time, finished action) and "nedokonavý" (used for a repeated or unfinished action). In most cases, the "dokonavý vid" uses the one-word future constructions, the "nedokonavý vid" uses the "to be" + infinitive future constructions.


"I will read a book next week" - "Příští týden BUDU ČÍST knihu" (over the course of the whole week, repeatedly, it doesn't specify if I'll finish the book)
"I will read the article tonight" - "PŘEČTU si ten článek dnes večer" (I will read it from beginning to end)

"I will write a letter" - "BUDU PSÁT dopis" (doesn't specify over what time period and if I'll finish writing it) x "NAPÍŠU dopis" (I'll start and finish writing it)

"I will learn Czech" - "BUDU SE UČIT česky" (doesn't specify how advanced I'll become) x "NAUČÍM SE česky" (I'll learn Czech to the point when I don't have to continue learning it, I'll become fluent)

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