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How does Polish sound to you? How to make Polish sound more pleasurable?


MareGaea 29 | 2,752  
24 Oct 2009 /  #61
I have always perceived German as a soft and poetic language

Indeed, in Warmovies Germans always sound like screaming non-humans. Later on this got a little better though. But German can indeed sound very nice, although it helps if you understand the language. I read somewhere on this forum that the Polish word for German Niemiec is derived from "to mumble" or something. Last night I heard another explanation: it could be as well derived from "Nemedians", a celtic tribe which is supposed to live on German territory before the Germans moved in. Don't know if this is true, but it does make some sense if you compare the words. But like said, I don't know if this is true.

I personally think all languages sound nice, it just depends on who is speaking them. Dutch, for example, is perceived as a harsh language to listen to, but it sounds much nicer when a gorgeous young lady speaks it than a 2 meter tall Neanderthaler mumbles it.

>^..^<

M-G (viva Esperanto, viva Slovio)
Ced 1 | 54  
24 Oct 2009 /  #62
it sounds much nicer when a gorgeous young lady speaks i

yes it's true. also the picth of voice, the type of voice and dialects and what is being spoken. i love watching portugese matches for example...the comments sound more exciting than brazilian films....i don't understand anything and i guess it's easier to judge a language whether it's nice to listen to it when you don't know the language. French is well-know as beautiful language but to be honest i can't judge it:D

by the way, do Poland have many dialects?
osiol 55 | 3,922  
24 Oct 2009 /  #63
It doesn't have the Bond-villain/villainess sound of Slovakian or Russian and nor does it have the high-in-the-throat projection of many German accents. It's not a soft language but neither does it sound particularly harsh. By soft, I mean something like Brazilian Portuguese or the more standard forms of English. Harsh being various forms of Spanish or German (although certainly not all forms).

"Polish sounds so much better than English, when it comes from a girl's lips" said a noted personage once, but that may actually have more to do with the girl (and the lips) than the actual language itself.
gumishu 11 | 5,128  
24 Oct 2009 /  #64
it could be as well derived from "Nemedians", a celtic tribe which is supposed to live on German territory before the Germans moved in. Don't know if this is true, but it does make some sense if you compare the words

doesn't make sense linguistically nor geographically - Slavs did not enter Poland untill 6th century AD and probably had no direct contact with ANY Celtic tribes for the most part of their history - Niemiec comes from niemy which means dumb (unable to speak) - the ethymology is quite obvious and cannot be seriously contested - it of course does not mean Germanic tribes were unable to speak - it means they Slavs were unable to understand them
MareGaea 29 | 2,752  
24 Oct 2009 /  #65
gumishu

Like I said, I didn't know if it was true.

>^..^<

M-G (shopping time again)
southern 75 | 7,096  
24 Oct 2009 /  #66
Slavic languages sound quite pleasant to the ear.Czech sounds like a Slav trying to speak german and polish has peculiar intonation because they put the stress in the syllabus three syllabes before the end which sounds strange.For example:Pocaluj me.

French put it in the last syllabe and Russians on the syllabe just one before the last which sounds pleasant:Gavarite po russki?

Czechs put the stress in many words in a poetic fashion:Jsem nemocny.Jak se mas? and tend to sing especially in Prague.Basically all the slavic languages have this singing air quality which makes them rhythmical and sleek,sensitive while czech and polish have syncopated rhythms due to lack of vowels.
knightingale - | 3  
24 Oct 2009 /  #67
I always thought the Polish language sounds like shafts of wheat softly shifting in the wind. Beautiful!
Lyzko  
24 Oct 2009 /  #68
.......or maybe that bird-chirping comparison of mine)))
southern 75 | 7,096  
24 Oct 2009 /  #69
Sometimes german sounds like a dog barking and polish like a bird chirping.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
25 Oct 2009 /  #70
polish has peculiar intonation because they put the stress in the syllabus three syllabes before the end

In polysyllabic words, it's nearly always on the penultimate. Russian has more of a variable position in words for stress.
OsiedleRuda  
25 Oct 2009 /  #71
Slavic languages sound quite pleasant to the ear.Czech sounds like a Slav trying to speak german and polish has peculiar intonation because they put the stress in the syllabus three syllabes before the end which sounds strange.For example:Pocaluj me.

Czechs put the stress in many words in a poetic fashion:Jsem nemocny.Jak se mas? and tend to sing especially in Prague.Basically all the slavic languages have this singing air quality which makes them rhythmical and sleek,sensitive while czech and polish have syncopated rhythms due to lack of vowels.

In Polish, primary stress is usually on the penultimate syllable.

In Czech, primary stress is always on the first syllable; on longer words, on odd syllables.

Slavic languages sound quite pleasant to the ear.Czech sounds like a Slav trying to speak german and polish has peculiar intonation because they put the stress in the syllabus three syllabes before the end which sounds strange.For example:Pocaluj me.

Czechs put the stress in many words in a poetic fashion: Jak se mas?

Jak se máš/Jak se máte is pronounced more like JAKse MAsz/JAKse MAte, the se tends to follow the preceding word very quickly. A Polish equivalent would be to say pierdolsię not pierdol się, but due to the pronunciation/stress of Polish it doesn't quite sound the same ;)

The reason it sounds more "singing" is because of letters like ý, the diacritic lengthens the sound of the "y", which would make a Polish "y" sound more like "eee", so Polish dobry sounds like DOBreee in Czech. Because of this, Polish sounds a bit more "monotonous" and less "musical" than Czech. And that's one of the reasons I like it (Czech) :)
neonbible - | 2  
25 Oct 2009 /  #72
polish sounds to me more like the sting of a bumblebee :) what i am not get used to till now as a native german speaker is how fast poles speak, same goes for the czechs. th quickness of the language seems to me something very slavic.
OsiedleRuda  
25 Oct 2009 /  #73
Foreigners often say things like "they talk too fast!", but in Polish, this is certainly true. I'm fluent in both English and Polish, and my understanding of both languages is more or less equal (if you ignore local dialect/colloquialisms), so it's not that I have "difficulty understanding". Have you ever listened to Polish news presenters? There is absolutely no doubt that they speak much faster than English presenters. Czech TV isn't that much slower, either. :0
time means 5 | 1,310  
25 Oct 2009 /  #74
Favourite Polish word has to be for earthworms. I can say it but cannot spell it.
southern 75 | 7,096  
25 Oct 2009 /  #75
Have you ever listened to Polish news presenters? There is absolutely no doubt that they speak much faster than English presenters. Czech TV isn't that much slower, either. :0

Yes,it is because slavic presenters try to create atmosphere with their voices while english presenters try to become understood by the public.
But generally Slavs are clever and essentially slow down when speaking to foreigners with a result to being better understood.They also help you substantially learn the language.

This is not true for Germans who almost never do such favours to foreigners.
Lyzko  
25 Oct 2009 /  #76
Neonbible,

als Deutschsprachiger auch amuesiert mich, wie besonders die Polen die deutsche Silbenbetonung immer uebertreiben, denn ihre Sprache hat fast keine Schwundlaute wie im Deutschen, z,B. GutEN AbEND! Wie gaijtES IhNEN? statt 'Gut'n Ab'nd! Wie geht's Ihn'n? wie in der gesprochenen Sprache.

As a German speaker as well. I'm often amused by how the Poles in particular tend to always exaggerate the syllabic stress in German words, for their language has practically zero schwa-sounds as in German, hence the example given:-)

(Just so the rest of you non-German speakers out there can understand!) LOL
TheOther 6 | 4,086  
25 Oct 2009 /  #77
This is not true for Germans who almost never do such favours to foreigners

You know why? Because Germans talk in English with foreigners most of the time. :)
If someone wants to learn or practice German, then of course the people slow down.
Lyzko  
26 Oct 2009 /  #78
'Because Germans talk in English with foreigners.....'

....which, as I keep insisting, is usually a mistake, as their English is rarely as good as the educated foreigner's command of German:-)))

Plus, Germans, as many other Europeans, feel ever free to correct foreigners' speaking their language, yet often become nastily defensive whenever Americans or particularly Brits, correct their English.

Odd, don't you think? One would hope that they'd at least be grateful, or is English the world's dumping ground for poor language?!
TheOther 6 | 4,086  
26 Oct 2009 /  #79
as their English is rarely as good as the educated foreigner's command of German

This is true for east Germany, where Russian as a second language is still much more widespread than English. In western Germany, English lessons have been compulsory from 4th and 5th grade on for a very long time (since the late 1960's, AFAIK). So no, the knowledge of English amongst Germans is usually much better than the foreigners' knowledge of the German language.

is English the world's dumping ground for poor language

Of course... ;)
Derevon 12 | 172  
26 Oct 2009 /  #80
Lyzko
What they speak in Malaren. Now, that's lovely indeed.

They speak Swedish in lake Mälaren? ;)

As for Swedish being melodic, it's mostly just in central Sweden. I'm from western Sweden near Göteborg, and I don't have anything like that melodious intonation some people more to the north have. In fact it even sounds rather unnatural to me, as if they're singing rather than talking.

Skånska is a different story altogether. They make diphthongs of just about every vowel sound whereas "standard Swedish" scarcely has any diphthongs at all.
SzwedwPolsce 11 | 1,595  
26 Oct 2009 /  #81
I don't have anything like that melodious intonation

There is no one in Sweden that doesn't have any melodic intonation at all. It's always impossible to analyze your own dialect. Since you've been speaking it for all your life, it sounds different to you than to people from other places. (I'm also from the West coast)
Bondi 4 | 142  
26 Oct 2009 /  #82
OsiedleRuda

The reason it sounds more "singing" is because of letters like ý, the diacritic lengthens the sound of the "y", which would make a Polish "y" sound more like "eee", so Polish dobry sounds like DOBreee in Czech. Because of this, Polish sounds a bit more "monotonous" and less "musical" than Czech. And that's one of the reasons I like it (Czech) :)

Ha-ha... Perhaps that's the reason it's a pleasure to watch the Czech classic "Dědictví aneb kurvahošigutntag" in original dubbing, even when you can't understand half of it.

The "control" of Bohuš at the restaurant is simply hilarious even by the sound:

Lyzko  
27 Oct 2009 /  #83
I disgree though that in former Western Germany, today united FRG, the fact that they've all been exposed to English in school since around the Sputnik era makes theirs better! They usually have atrocious accents and get most of our idioms ass backwards!

They only "sound" good in English, because they overpower with their arrogance, not their English competence.

Anybody can talk loudly and opinionatedly and seem authoritative even though they may not be:-)

In this regards, the Poles are slightly more honest as well as modest about their English skills. LOL
TheOther 6 | 4,086  
27 Oct 2009 /  #84
They usually have atrocious accents and get most of our idioms ass backwards!

Do they need to speak Strine or Cockney to get your approval? To have an accent is unavoidable.

...because they overpower with their arrogance

That's a stupid stereotype.
Lyzko  
27 Oct 2009 /  #85
In addition, why pray tell should English be the dumping ground for the world's bad language, like some black hole-type cesspool which continuously absorbs grit and dirt??

'Of course.' is hardly the answer.

The Poles, the Germans, the French etc.. ALL preserve their rich languages. English, one of the richest has been reduced to such a globalized state, it's appalling as to the lack of international standardization!

Strine or Cockney hardly. But how about some degree of self-deprecating humor about their poor English (even if "good") and some showing od desired improvement, eh?
Lyzko  
27 Oct 2009 /  #86
Not so 'stupid' a stereotype. After all, stereotypes are merely exaggerations of perceived truths. Germans often DO think their English is better than foreigner's German, as a sort of foregone conclusion, even if the latter is not the case!!
TheOther 6 | 4,086  
27 Oct 2009 /  #87
After all, stereotypes are merely exaggerations of perceived truths

Perceived truth? I would call it a personal impression that someone has. If you have met one German that doesn't mean you know them all.

Germans often DO think their English is better

How do you know?
Lyzko  
28 Oct 2009 /  #88
.....from personal experience, naturally!!

True not all foreign German speakers are perfect linguists, but the English of many supposedly advanced Germans, leaves much to be desired, in my mind.

Sure, to Americans anybody who can get by in English is considered fluent in their eyes. Well, my generation holds language up to a slightly higher standard. Face it, watching older movies from the early 60's until now, one must admit, the bar has been severely lowered and the audience dumbed down considerably.
TheOther 6 | 4,086  
28 Oct 2009 /  #89
leaves much to be desired

There's always a difference between a native speaker and someone who learned a second language. What do you expect? I kind of doubt that you have met more than one or two Germans who pretended to be perfect in English and thus were arrogant. Maybe you just had bad luck and came across the wrong person. I lived in Germany for quite a few years and I've never seen such behaviour.

one must admit, the bar has been severely lowered

I agree, but hey ... I'm Aussie ... ;)
Lyzko  
28 Oct 2009 /  #90
It's be far too much of a cheap shot here to compare Aussies to the Americans rather than to the Brits in this regard.

What I'm simply reiterating is that indeed, presto, guess what, you're correct; there IS, in fact, a big difference between being a native speaker of (in this case, English) and being a second-language speaker of it!! Fine, granted! Why then this eternal confounded double standard? The average younger globalized German yuppy of today, hearing, say, an English speaker muddle along in broken German, merrily chiming in with his or her equally broken English?? Does somehow badly-spoken English sound 'cooler' or more acceptable, than badly-spoken German, French Polish etc.???

I just don't get it. It's still misuse of language! More frequently than not the European needs as much if not more practice in English than the foreigner does in the European's language.

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