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Polish was chosen the HARDEST LANGUAGE in the world to learn... :D


mafketis 23 | 8,612
28 Feb 2010 #541
Space and The Cosmos are singular

Technically they're not singular (which can only exist in opposition to 'plural') they're non-count, which means they have no number. They take singular verbs but can't be used with the indefinite article (required in some cases for true singular nouns).
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #542
They don't take indefinite articles as they are one concept, not designed to be counted as Space is just Space. Grammatically, it's a collective singular. THE Cosmos, THE. ONE!!

Until 'better' knowledge comes forward, that's the position.
z_darius 14 | 3,968
28 Feb 2010 #543
I'm aware that a lot of astronomers would try but that is another argument. Whether there are or not is a matter of conjecture.

John Gribbin may argue with Hawkings, they are experts in their field. As we know it now, there is just Space as referred to in Star Trek.

You are on a loser here Darek. I can give you many links that Space and The Cosmos are singular.

I'm sure you can give me all kinds of grammatical sources. I am giving you examples of living English as used by native speakers of the language.

Plenty of cosmic spaces out there. Get used to it ;)
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #544
You are missing the point. I'm not disputing the fact that spaces exist, cosmic spaces being an example. It is more applied in Mathematics but astronomers tend to speak more of Space as an extent.

People study Space, not spaces ;) ;)
mafketis 23 | 8,612
28 Feb 2010 #545
Grammatically, it's a collective singular. THE Cosmos, THE. ONE!!
Until 'better' knowledge comes forward, that's the position.

Not to pull rank or anything, but I am a linguist... It's not a collective singular (some popular teaching materials might use that kind of terminology but it's not really accurate here).

I do agree that 'spaces' (in the meaning of 'outer space') is not normally pluralized. If it were, it could only mean (for me):

a) different dimensions (as in SF)

b) different parts of the cosmos

'cosmoses' just can't exist in my dialect without some kind of SF meaning (I can imagine it as astrophysics jargon or something like that, but jargon and everyday usage are two separate things).
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #546
Exactly, mafketis. Outer Space is not pluralised in the classic way.

You haven't explained why it isn't a collective singular, you just stated it. Żadne tłumaczenie.

IT IS not a collective singular you said :) :) Well, "it's not" to be exact :) Is 'it' 2 things? ;) ;)
mafketis 23 | 8,612
28 Feb 2010 #547
collective usually means a group of things, government (in the American sense), family (a set of related individuals), herd (a group individual animals). They're all singular and can take the indefinite article and have plurals. Again singular is a meaningless concept unless there's a plural (that's a technical point of linguistics - no contrast, no category)

Space is more a substance like milk or air.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #548
Space is more like or IS like milk or air?

How about the Borg in Star Trek? That's a collective, a group of individual Borg. You can have 50 Borg when dissected but THE BORG is a collective singular, it's one entity just like Space is. You can have 3 shelves, 4 closets etc etc but it's still FURNITURE. You can say a herd meaning the whole group of animals but a Borg would be an individual like Hue in that episode. However, it's still a collective. It's THE Borg, singular concept. Just like Space. They are Borg, one thing, unable to function independently.

IT is not a collective singular you said, please explain. It means one thing, yes? Space is collective for all the planets and things which comprise the cosmos.

They are Borg, making The Borg, a collective singular for all the component parts to make up the whole, singular entity. You see my point?
FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,884
28 Feb 2010 #549
what a completely absurd and pointless argument you all are having.

In other words, 4 different ways for describing a phenomenon that is not likely to ever be needed is not a sign of linguistic inefficiency or poverty. It is a sign of richness and flexibility.

call it what you want. i call it inefficient.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #550
How is it absurd and pointless? You are completely belittling the study of Linguistics and mafketis has really made me think. Kindly don't cheapen his work and profession. Look at the subtleties of what we are trying to say.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,359
28 Feb 2010 #551
what a completely absurd and pointless argument you all are having.

Is that your inferiority complex showing again?

First you criticise non-natives as somehow being inferior (even when many of them have a far superior grasp of English than yourself), and now you criticise better qualified native teachers and linguists as being "absurd and pointless".

Are you even qualified in any way to teach? Given the amount of mistakes that you make in writing, I doubt it.

call it what you want. i call it inefficient.

Your opinion doesn't count, because you're not qualified to comment.

I find it particularly interesting, as would anyone with a real interest in the English language. You can't be much of a teacher if you're not interested in the nitty gritty details. And you wonder why native speakers have a bad reputation in Poland?
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #552
Exactly, maybe he should go and say the same to Miodek who considers similar points :)
Lyzko
28 Feb 2010 #553
In this respect, Japanese and Korean surpass even Czech or Polish:-) In the latter, there is a SEPARATE counting system depending upon whether one is counting straight off, i.e. 'one', 'two', 'three' and so forth, or whether one is counting people, or even objects, be they round, square, serrated, bumpy etc...

This means that before counting, the precise nature of the material being counted has to be known. What these two languages do in the case of mixed objects, persons ad infinitum, I've no clue.

What they lack in gender, e.g. as in in Polish, or distinct articles like German, they more than compensate such difficulty by a staggering numbering system!

Sorry, take that back! I meant "....in the former...."

)))))
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #554
Exactly, Lyzko. They have hitotsu, futatsu, mittsu etc etc as standard counters but they count different things differently. Ippon, nihon, sambon and yonhon for 1, 2, 3+4 bottles of beer respectively. Ippai, nihai, sanbai for 1, 2 and 3 glasses of beer. They count separate animals differently too whereas we just add 's' in English or use a few exceptions (deer, sheep, fish and mice etc).

They have so many exceptions for people in Japanese like hitori and futari (1 and 2). Usually they count with nin, like san-nin, yon-nin and go-nin etc etc (3,4 and 5). When they count floors, there are exceptions too. The third floor is sangai and not kai like the rest of them. It's all about sound.

Anyway, I can tie it back in with Polish counters and say that I find Polish counters easier but they have exceptions too.

I lived in Japan for 2 years and somewhat feel this language through constant use. What did you mean by mixed objects btw?
Lyzko
28 Feb 2010 #555
Polish is really not that bad when compared with Japanese, that's true.

Two men, dogs, chairs etc.. arrived today = Dzisiaj przyjechało dwóch mężczyźń, psów, stołów itd......

??? Hope that's right:-)

Japanese is harder then, eh? LOL
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #556
Japanese would probably use, soshtara or soshite which mean 'and then'.
Gregrog 4 | 100
28 Feb 2010 #557
Dzisiaj przyjechało dwóch mężczyźń, psów, stołów itd......

Dziś przyjechało dwóch mężczyzn.
Dziś przyjechały dwa psy.
Dziś przyjechały dwa stoły.

;)
Seanus 15 | 19,706
28 Feb 2010 #558
Psa - feminine, więc przyjechały. Japanese doesn't have this problem.
FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,884
28 Feb 2010 #559
Seanus wrote:

Psa - feminine, więc przyjechały. Japanese doesn't have this problem.

pies is a masculine word, hence "ten pies", but when using a verb to refer to more than one in the past, it is in the feminine form, but still a masculine noun technically. for example, "podobaly mi sie te filmy". film is masculine, but you don't use a masculine form.

Gregrog wrote:

Dziś przyjechało dwóch mężczyzn.

dzis, przyjechali dwoch mezczyzn.

Delphiandomine wrote:

Your opinion doesn't count, because you're not qualified to comment.

funny you should mention.....are you ready to answer my questions now Delph?

EVERYBODY has seen that you ducked them all.....again. You must have them memorized by now, along with the rest of the forum pappy, but here we go, round and round.

Dear Ole' Delphiandomine, I would like to know, because you love to talk about who's qualified to have what job, or talk about certain subjects, etc. etc., please tell me, for the umpteenth time:

Where were you born?
How long have you been in Poland?
Do you have any Polish blood?
What is your nationality?
What is your native language?

when you answer these questions, maybe i'll consider commenting on your constant assumptions about how qualified or not I am.

COME CLEAN my dear.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
1 Mar 2010 #560
I'm aware of that, FUZZY, thanks. It isn't przyjechali though, is it!!? ;) ;)
Ironside 49 | 10,471
1 Mar 2010 #561
Where were you born?
How long have you been in Poland?
Do you have any Polish blood?
What is your nationality?
What is your native language?

WTF ?
Berlin
well? don't understand question - long enough ?
Yeah!
What do you mean?
by native you mean first language/ - Polish-French?
Are you obsesed ?
z_darius 14 | 3,968
1 Mar 2010 #562
People study Space, not spaces ;) ;)

It turns out they study both.

Outer Space is not pluralised in the classic way.

In the classic way?
What is that classic way?

In this day and age space, in reference to cosmos is certainly pluralized as illustrated above. What more, some argue that cosmic spaces may have subspaces, and its irrelevant whether there is one or more cosmic space or not. The point is that in English the word has plural forms.
mafketis 23 | 8,612
1 Mar 2010 #563
The point is that in English the word has plural forms.

Not in everyday, mainstream usage it doesn't. Specialist vocabulary takes on different meanings and can generate new forms that aren't part of mainstream usage.

If you go around speaking to non-specialists saying things like:

"That movie is set in outer spaces." or "That new telescope can see further out into the cosmoses than ever before."

People will understand you, but you'll sound weird and the great majority of native speakers (let's say 98% give or take a few points) won't produce those sequences naturally.

IT is not a collective singular you said, please explain. It means one thing, yes? Space is collective for all the planets and things which comprise the cosmos.

Okay, usually a collective singular noun is made up of a set of potentially discrete individuals of the same class.

family = individuals of the same species
team = players on the same side
herd = (usually fourfooted) animals (usually) of the same species

furniture is an odd duck, kind of a collective, but made up of individuals of different classes (chairs, tables, beds etc) it's more a cover term like 'mammals' but for hard to determine reasons remains stubbornly non-count for native speakers.

space in the classic sense doesn't necessarily refer to celestial bodies, but the matter between them. ('outer space' might refer to celestial bodies and the matter between them and cosmos might, but the plain word 'space' even in the SF meaning doesn't. The planets and stars etc are _in_ space (like islands in an ocean) and not part of it.

I'm not a semanticist and I'm rapidly reaching the end of what I can confidently say on the subject without working out a theoretical model or doing some checking on references and I don't have the slightest intention of doing either :)

On the other hand, the very well known (in linguistics) Polish born Australian semanticist Anna Wierzbicka has written a lot on the boundaries in English between individual items and collective and substance nouns that address a lot of these issues. If you're interested look her stuff up. She's not the easiest read in the world but she's far from the worst writer in linguistics (that would be Chomsky, Noam who's writing is disorganized, opaque and aimed only at those who follow his work obsessively).
FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,884
1 Mar 2010 #564
Seanus wrote:

I'm aware of that, FUZZY, thanks.

if you're aware of it, why did you write it. oh, I almost forgot, I'm not qualified enough to comment on Polish. I'll let someone more qualified I guess point out your mistakes.

Seanus wrote:

It isn't przyjechali though, is it!!? ;) ;)

i simply don't know what you mean. do you know a better way of saying it?

Ironside wrote:

WTF ?
Berlin
well? don't understand question - long enough ?
Yeah!
What do you mean?
by native you mean first language/ - Polish-French?
Are you obsesed ?

don't you think it's a little strange Ironside, hell, this question goes out to everyone, that Delph refuses to answer these questions EVERY SINGLE TIME? And Ironside, you're the second guy that tried answering the questions FOR him because Delph refused to. After he wrote all that nonsense to me last night and I challenged him right back, with THE SAME CHALLENGE I'VE BEEN GIVING HIM FOR MONTHS, as always.......crickets. It's not being "obsessed", it's simply having someone mud slinging your posts, and when I try for a rebuttal, mind you the most basic, simplistic questions you could imagine, he ignores it. Every time. At this point, I'm amazed other posters haven't asked him to answer the questions, just to get it over with.

He loves to dish it out but when the table is turned, he runs away with his tail between his legs. What a Nancy.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
1 Mar 2010 #565
FUZZY, I was merely stating that it took on a feminine form. I knew even back in 2004 that it was ten pies, thus masculine. Let's not split hairs as we are both aware of Polish grammar, you better than I. I'm just happy that I know many words ending with 'a' are masculine ;) ;0 ;) Like ten kierowca and ten dentysta, for example. Also, that some words that look masculine are feminine, like część would be ta. I made no mistake and you know it. Ta pies, LOL, nigdy w życiu :)

My przyjechali point was clear. Feminine - chały and Masculine - chali. Simple?? Man and woman together would be chali.

Dariusz, try to listen to what mafketis is saying. It doesn't have a plural forum as I'm talking about Space and not a space. A space (1) of course can be pluralised to 2 spaces.

Well, in Space, yes, but very much what we explore when we explore 'Space'. In Star Trek, they examined floating phenomena as well as the planets.

Look at my Borg example for the subtleties of these points.
tonywob 6 | 43
1 Mar 2010 #566
Like ta kierowca and dentysta

Shouldn't that be "ten kierowca" and "ten dentysta"?
Seanus 15 | 19,706
1 Mar 2010 #567
Yes, changed now. Thanks for pointing that out. I've just had a long 90-min class and I'm not 100% in focus.

I had ta stuck in my head and it came out, oops!
Ironside 49 | 10,471
1 Mar 2010 #568
Dziś przyjechało dwóch mężczyzn.

dzis, przyjechali dwoch mezczyzn.

przyjechalo dwoch mezczyzn or oni przyjechali

What is that all about?
FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,884
1 Mar 2010 #569
Seanus wrote:

I made no mistake and you know it. Ta pies, LOL, nigdy w życiu :)

then your post was misleading, at least to me.

Seanus wrote:

My przyjechali point was clear. Feminine - chały and Masculine - chali. Simple?? Man and woman together would be chali.

Was it? your comment to my correction was "It isn't przyjechali though, is it?" Maybe I just don't get your humor. Like I asked the first time, what did you mean by that?

Either way, I don't care. for the record, I'm not one to play grammar police. it's generally arrogant and petty and often times sidetracks the conversation. Look through any of my posts....I don't do it.

After all, we already have a certain someone on this forum that does enough of that for everybody ;)

I was simply using Gregrog and you to bolster my post because I knew how excited Delph would be to see that I am, at the very least, moderately qualified to comment on Polish ;)

The more that guy comments on my posts and makes these blind assumptions, the sillier he looks.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
1 Mar 2010 #570
I meant exactly what you meant, that is takes on a feminine form though retaining its masculine essence. It WAS worthy of commenting on as when you see 'dwa' as a counter then you have things like psy, kretyny itd, from the masculine singulars. Dwie is considered the female marker, e.g kiełbasa (1), krzesła (1), kobieta (1) etc etc. Dwie kobiety przyjechały is natural but it looks different with the masculine counting system.

I don't doubt your credentials. This is the internet where anybody could be, well, anybody ;) ;) I could be Barack Obama's long lost Polish brother :)


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