"Why are you in our beds?"
Translation:Proč jste v našich postelích?
You can study this complex phenomenon thoroughly, or you can go by intuition. If it's too difficult to pronounce with "v" (note that it can also become /f/ before voiceless consonants), use "ve". You will be understood even if you get it wrong and eventually you will get it right.
V úterý /fʔu:teri:/ (a vowel)
V televizi /ftelevizi/ (a single consonant other than v or f)
V domě /vdomňe/ (same as the previous)
V Praze /fpraze/ (two consonants, the second is r, ř, or l)
V hlavě /vhlavje/ (same as the previous)
Ve vodě /vevoďe/ (before v or f)
Ve středu /vestředu/ (3+ consonants in the next syllable)
Ve kterém /vektere:m/, v kterém /fktere:m/ (2 consonants, both "v" and "ve" are possible)
Ve městě /vemňesťe/, v městě /vmňesťe/ (same as the previous)
Because when we connect a preposition to a word beginning with a vowel, we insert a glottal stop. And since the glottal stop is a voiceless sound, it causes any preceding consonants to become devoiced due to assimilation. If you're unfamiliar with the term "glottal stop", it's like a tiny break in speech where the vocal chords quickly close and open again without making a sound. Among many other places, you can find it in some dialects of British English where "better" is pronounced as [beʔə].
- v Americe /fʔamerice/ (in America)
- z okna /sʔokna/ (out of the window)
- o Evropě /oʔevropje/ (about Europe)
- na ulici /naʔulici/ (on the street)
- bez auta /besʔauta/ (without a car)
Note: Moravian dialects often omit the glottal stop and end up saying /vu:teri:/, /vamerice/, /zokna/ etc. instead.