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List of Polish consonants

Mufasa 19 | 358  
15 Dec 2007 /  #1
Panie Darku, or anybody who can help? Is this list of soft consonants correct and complete?

c, ch, cz, ć, dz, dż, dzi, g, h, j, k, l, ń, rz, sz, ś, ż, ź?

Admin, I am creating this thread for all my language questions. It is absolutely useless to have a new thread for every Q. One thread, and I have them all together. Is it possible to merge my other language threads into this one?
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
15 Dec 2007 /  #2
not sure if I'd call all of them soft consonats.
Softening is added by the influence of "i" sound. So of the list I'd say these are soft:

ć, dź, j, ń, ś, ź, dzi

However, in linguistics soft consonants in modern Polish are defined as those whose pronunciation requires the middle part of the tongue to be lifted towards the hard palate. Therefore, the list should be supplemented by: k', g', l' j

(apostrophe denotes softening of the consonnat by the "i" sound)

c, ch, cz,dz, dź, rz, sz are frontal, so they are not soft, but occurence of "i" following some them may produce a soft consonant (for instance chiński)

polish consonants?

Yup, final touches show zeal for mastery :)
OP Mufasa 19 | 358  
15 Dec 2007 /  #3
final touches show zeal for mastery :)

*mufasa lets out DEEP SIGH* sometimes i think just zeal for headache! LOL

so s and z are hard because they don't have one of the aove three influences?
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
15 Dec 2007 /  #4
so s and z are hard because they don't have one of the aove three influences?

And also verify that the middle part of the tongue does not travel towards the hard palate as it is the case with ś or ź
Michal - | 1,865  
15 Dec 2007 /  #5
It is a general rule that no consonant is hard before an 'i'. It is important to distinguish between hard and soft consonants, since the difference can effect the meaning of a word. For example,

porą-in the season
kona-is dying

piorą-they are washing
konia-horse (accusative)

In the endings of certain words of foreign origin, the letter 'i' preceding a vowel denotes 'y', as well as, on occasion, the softness of the preceding consonant.

filologia-philosophy (feellolog-ja) philology
linia (leeny-ja)-line
partia (part-ja) party
materiał (materyaw)-material
radio (radio (rad-jo) wireless

The difference between hard and soft consonants is closely connected with the use of vowels 'i' and 'y' in the spelling of polish words. The letter 'i' represents the sound 'ee' and always follows a soft consonant (when followed by another vowel, it is merely a spelling device to denote the softness of the consonant preceding it). The letter y, on the other hand, which represents the sound 'i', always follows a hard consonant.

nowi-(novee)-new ones
pisać-(peesachy)-to write
mi-(mee)-to me
ozdobi-(ozdobee)-it will adorn
cennik-(tsenneek)-price list


pytać-(pitachy)-to ask

Therefore consonants which are always hard (have no soft counterparts) are always followed by y (i). Such consonants include c, cz, d, dz, dż, r, s, sz, t, z, ż, and rz.
Yanchao - | 3  
16 Feb 2008 /  #6
Thread attached on merging:
Difference between Soft Consonatns & Hard Consonants

I'm a beginning learner of Polish.
Courses on Polish stress the difference of soft consonants and hard consonants.
For example,

I follow the tips there to practice the so-called softened consonants but actually I don't tell the difference when hearing my own pronunciation of a softened consonant and a hard(normal) one.

So my question is: Is there really a distinguishable difference for the listener in pronunciation between softened p, f, w, m, w and hard ones? If yes, what's the difference?

Thanks a lot.
Michal - | 1,865  
17 Feb 2008 /  #7
This question has also been asked and has been answered in full. Look through past threads and you will find it.

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