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Questions about Polish language and grammar - I can help you

Kasiula 1 | 2  
23 May 2009 /  #1
Cześć (Hi),
If you have some questions about Polish language and grammar, write them here.
(Jeżeli macie jakieś pytania dotyczące gramatyki i języka polskiego, piszcie je tu).

Jestem Kasia i jestem z Polski (My name's Kate and I from Poland).

Z chęcią pomogę każdemu (I want to help everyone).

Pozdrawiam :) Kasiula
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,446  
23 May 2009 /  #2
Something I have wondered about are nominal suffixes, esp. of masculine nouns. I have in mind such as -ur, -ura-, -or, -ora, --oła, ul, -uła, -ol, -ajda, -ęga and a few others.

I'd be interested in seeing what they usually mean and a few examples.
Some are neutral as in kocur or gąsior but others often have a pejorative flavour, for instance: gaduła, ciamajda, pierdoła, szlachciura, niedołęga, etc.
OP Kasiula 1 | 2  
23 May 2009 /  #3
I realy want to help you but I don't know whether I can.
Whether you can, write one more time how can I help you.
I don't know what do you mean.

Do you speak Polish?
24 May 2009 /  #4
I am not sure anyone can help him. Sounds like a wind up question to me...mate, get your self of to university and do a language degree if you want those sorts of questions answered. Kasiula, good luck!
Ziemowit 14 | 4,422  
25 May 2009 /  #5
A very interesting question to which Kasiula could not find any answer (btw, the name Kasiula has in itself an interesting suffix: -ula). Well, I just wonder if the suffixes named by Polonius are that specific. For example, I can't think of any other word ending in -ciura (as in szlachciura), except the word ciura. "-ęga" seems to convey a pejorative flavour indeed, as in "łazęga", "mordęga", but there is also: potęga, księga (both neutral). For "-ajda", there is: znajda, niedorajda.
frd 7 | 1,401  
25 May 2009 /  #6
I'm afraid Kasiula was expecting more "how do you say Hi in polish" questions ; ) But really some more specific grammar questions would probably require a polish language teacher to be present ; )
Vincent 9 | 935   Moderator
25 May 2009 /  #7
If you have some questions about Polish language and grammar, write them here.

dwojga, trojga, czworga, pięciorga, sześciorga... Are these numbers used for counting groups of females? If not could you tell me what they are used for? Thanks.
25 May 2009 /  #8
even though Polish is my first language (kinda) i've never heard anything like 'szlachciura' or 'mordęga' LOL

As for grouping question I'd say they'd rather use 'dwoje, troje, czrowo' instead…

For some reason 'dwojga' sounds just weird to me. Isn't that an old way of saying 'dwoje' ??
frd 7 | 1,401  
25 May 2009 /  #9
i've never heard anything like 'szlachciura' or 'mordęga'

well.. these are pretty usual words.. I don't think they are even rare especially "mordęga", probably mostly likely to be found in older polish books like Pan Tadeusz, but also in the press..
Ziemowit 14 | 4,422  
26 May 2009 /  #10
Another one of this kind: mitręga. "Mordęga" or "mitręga" are not yet "old-fashioned", but they may be heading in that direction [the root verb "(z)mitrężyć" does seem to me quite old-fashioned, however].

"Szlachciura" is mostly heard in the historical context these days, just as its root noun "szlachcic". Still, they are perfectly recognizable in modern language (probably like the English word "peasant" which belongs to the past, but everybody knows what it means).

In the absence of Kasiula (who has apparently been frightened off by the question of Polonius), I would like to say that "dwojga, trojga ... sześciorga" is the genetive case of "dwoje, troje ... sześcioro". These numerals are used with plural neutral nouns or nouns describing groups of living beings of both sexes. For example, when I read a title in the "Polityka" weekly (the real title, actually): "Economy, Tusku! czyli dzień z życia trojga przywódców", I would expect that among these three leaders that the paper is going to describe, there should be one or two women (in other words, they would never apply such a title if talking of male leaders only in which case the title should be: "z życia trzech przywódców). And indeed, the article discusses the day from the life of Angela Merkel, Barack Obama and Donald Tusk. In the nominative case you would have: "Oto troje (nominative) przywódców (genetive): A.M, B.O. and D. T. (nominative)". Similarly, you would have: dwoje (or better, oboje) małżonków, troje źrebiąt, czworo szczeniąt, pięcioro prosiąt, sześcioro dzieci etc.)

Numerals in Polish is a very complicated question and there could be more to add to the problem. Indeed, you do say: dwoje, troje, czworo (etc.) kobiet (genetive) which is just the other way of saying: dwie, trzy, cztery kobiety (nominative); both expressions mean exactly the same.
Vincent 9 | 935   Moderator
26 May 2009 /  #11
I would like to say that "dwojga, trojga ... sześciorga" is the genetive case of "dwoje, troje ... sześcioro". These numerals are used with plural neutral nouns or nouns describing groups of living beings of both sexes.

Many thanks for explaining this Ziemowit :)
Ziemowit 14 | 4,422  
27 May 2009 /  #12
Even Polish grammarians do not seem to understand collective numerals in full. For example, in the book "Gramatyka polska" by Krystyna Stachera, Wydawnictwo "Park" 2006, we read that we use them in describing the quantity of:

a. minors (human and animal) [istoty niedorosłe],
b. people of both sexes grouped together [osoby różnej płci],
c. using nouns that do not come in singular [rzeczowniki nie posiadające liczby pojedyńczej].

The book gives the following examples:
1. Pod pomnikiem troje turystów robiło zdjęcia. (b)
2. Do egzaminu przystąpiło osiemdziesięcioro uczniów. (a)
3. W gnieździe jaskółek wrzeszczalo sześcioro głodnych piskląt. (a)
4. Kulig, złożony z siedmiorga sań, ruszył w stronę lasu. (c)
5. Z dwojgiem przyjaciół wybrałam się do galerii sztuki nowoczesnej. (b)
6. Każdy chrześcijanin powinien znać dziesięcioro przykazań. (!?)

The problem with sentence nr 5 is that the noun przykazań, has its singular (przykazanie), so the sentence does not comply with the given principles, yet it is correct (it seems that collective numerals may sometimes be used with objects forming some sort of a "set"). In sentences 2 and 6 you can as well use basic numerals; in this case the noun will be "seen" through its gramatical gender rather than as belonging to a mixed group or to a certain set of objects.
Learner - | 3  
9 Jun 2009 /  #13

I'm new to this forum. I recently met a Polish girl and she's used some Polish phrases in her emails to me, up till now I've looked them up on the net for the English meaning.

Thought to join up this forum, as it seems everyone here is very helpful!

Here's a greeting she used:

Dzień dobry, cześć i czołem

I understand "Dzień dobry" means good day, and "cześć" is hi. But the "i czołem" bit and all in one sentence means?? Oh and what's "Ciacho"?

Many thanks! :)
gumishu 13 | 6,113  
9 Jun 2009 /  #14
czołem is literally - with a forehead (from czoło - forehead) (czołem is Instrumental singular of czoło)

it is used as a greeting (it's not that often used but some people do like it and do use it) often in a combination like here - cześć i czołem

i don't know the origins of czołem as a greeting - it must be though quite old

ciacho - literally cookie (augmentative of ciastko or ciasto) - is used to describe handsome men
Learner - | 3  
9 Jun 2009 /  #15
Thanks, appreciate it!
Ziemowit 14 | 4,422  
9 Jun 2009 /  #16
"Dzień dobry, cześć i czołem!
[Pytacie skąd się wziąłem!?
Jestem wesoły Romek,
mam na przedmieściu domek,
a w domku wodę, światło, gaz! ...]

is actually a citation from a very popular Polish comedy film MIŚ. "Czołem" alone is also used in the army as a salutation between troops and commanders: "Czołem żołnierze! Czołem panie pułkowniku!"

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