Essential Romanian 2

CEC Palace in Bucharest, Romania

If you’ve already learned and practiced Essential Romanian 1 , you’ll be ready to tackle the next 12 essentials. 
These are words and phrases that’ll help you ask “Where is …?” questions – if you’re looking for the bathroom, a pharmacy, a bus stop, or the subway or railway station, a bank or an ATM.
You may also want to know if the person you’re talking with speaks Italian, or English – that is, one of the languages you may speak as well.

The Next 12 Romanian Phrases: “Unde este…?”

Some Modern Romanian History…

Romania was formed and declared its independence from Turkey in 1877. In 1881 it became a kingdom under King Carol.
During World War 1 Romania joined Britain, France and Russia against Germany and Austria-Hungary. At the end of the war in 1918, Romania took Transylvania from Hungary and, with Bessarabia back from Russia, its population increased by 60% to nearly 12 million people.
However, political life for the next 70 years was quite erratic:
The 1920s and 30s saw many different governments with the king ruling with a royal dictatorship after 1938.
In 1940 Stalin pressured Romania to cede the eastern province of Bessarabia to Russia; Hitler forced the country to give Northern Transylvania to Hungary and other parts to Bulgaria.
King Carol had to abdicate in favor of his son Michael. As Marshal Ion Antonescu established himself as a fascist dictator, King Michael had little power.
Antonescu set on the wrong horse to regain Bessarabia and joined Hitler’s invasion of Russia in 1941.
In 1944, after a coup that toppled Antonescu, Romania switched sides and joined the Allies.
After the war, Russia took Bessarabia again, occupied Romania until 1958, and established a totalitarian communist dictatorship.
In 1965 Nicolae Ceausescu became Romania’s ruler. He ruled with an iron hand until 1989, when the political events of that year overtook him. He was shot on Christmas Day 1989.
Since then, Romania has had a difficult time evolving from a communist dictatorship to a market-based democracy. It joined the NATO in 2004, the EU in 2007. And while the 2008 world wide recession affected it severely, it has recovered and is growing steadily.
Romania’s population is now 21.5 million.

“Unde este…?”-Questions Answered…

Asking “Unde este…?” questions could let the person you are asking assume that you speak Romanian.
The result will often be an answer and a stream of Romanian words you may not understand.
It would therefore be good to know some basic directional words and phrases in Romanian – left, right, straight ahead, etc.
Check back with us for next 13 Romanian phrases in a few weeks.

Author: Peter Rettig

Peter F. Rettig's interest in languages began while working in Switzerland, where he became fluent in French. In his third career, he started and - as a language lover and traveler later in life - Lingo-Late with his wife, Ulrike.

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