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Too many English words in the Polish language!


Lyzko
11 Jan 2010 #91
B. B., I was brought up bilingual, practically, with German and English. If there's a natural-sounding English translation for "Jaehzorn" or "Gemuetlichkeit", I'm dyin' to know!!!

Back to Polish, Polish, like German, still uses its own word for Stock Exchange (giełda), even though most financial vocabulary in many languages today is English. How come then? Is it not remotely possible that certain expressions in the mother tongue simply hit the nail on the head more accurately than second-rate imports???

-)
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,160
11 Jan 2010 #92
Yes, I agree. Incidentally, you Germans ain't so hot in that department either.:-)

He isn't a German...he said he is Argentinian on his way to Israel!

I'm the board German! :)
Mr Grunwald 19 | 1,542
12 Jan 2010 #93
I'm the board German! :)

Jah so? (or zo?) [plz educate Sie mich]

He isn't a German...he said he is Argentinian on his way to Israel!

He might be an old German colonist from the late 40's and wants to go to israel to...
Ill better stop :)
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
12 Jan 2010 #94
The Anglicisaiion of Polish did not start with the fall of the Iron Curtian. Also before the war there were many borrowings. The field of sport, technical inventions and dog breeds are prime examples.
frd 7 | 1,399
12 Jan 2010 #95
I am not uneducated.

But robot is indeed a Czech word..

There's so many word of a French origin in English I'm amazed you guys are so touchy about English words in Polish. It's a natural thing for the language to evolve and be influenced by other languages. I'd say much worse is the language bastardization noticible both in Polish and English, visible especially on the internet, kids shortening words or omitting grammar rules..
mawaukltd - | 7
12 Jan 2010 #96
Get a Polish thesaurus, you quickly realise that around 30% of Polish is derived from English which is derived from Latin........so no great problem.It just proves it is a dynamic and living language. Can anyone tell me though approximately how many words there are in Polish, it has always puzzled me that compared to English there seems to be far fewer but maybe thats just my impression as a native English speaker who came to live in Poland 6 years ago.
strzyga 2 | 993
12 Jan 2010 #97
Get a Polish thesaurus, you quickly realise that around 30% of Polish is derived from English which is derived from Latin

actually these words did not come into Polish via English but directly from Latin, which was the language of the educated from the Middle Ages on, until as late as 19th/20th century. Polish didn't have much contact with English then. But due to this common heritage many words from the so-called higher register of English seem obvious to a Polish learner now, and it probably works both ways.

As for the total number of Polish words, I've seen figures ranging from 170 000 to 225 000, depending on whether you count obsolete words no longer in use and specialist vocabulary. Practical Dictionary of Current Polish, which I have at home, has over 130 000 entries and it doesn't include archaisms nor highly specialized terms. I really don't know why many foreign speakers of Polish claim that the number of Polish words is so limited. It might be that when trying to translate English words you always encounter the same simplest equivalents and never come across many other, less obvious synonyms, so it rather says a lot about the quality of English-Polish dictionaries - and that, I agree, is not the best.
Lyzko
12 Jan 2010 #98
Russian however seems to have far fewer Romance/Latin-based derivatives, e.g. it has it's own Slavic words for Polish 'literatura', 'restauracja', 'Sylwester' etc.....

:-)

Are we "touchy"? You mean perhaps "painstakingly sensitive", perhaps (or then again, perhaps not) LOL Indeed we are, having bothered to learn another (in the sense of 'other'!!) language, then finding that you all have mucked it up with Anglo-Saxon additives, often rather rancid or articfically preserved HA!.

Oh well, "Jeszcze polski nie zgineł_!"

))))))
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
12 Jan 2010 #99
it has it's own Slavic words for Polish 'literatura', 'restauracja'

literature - literatura, restaurant - restoran (sorry about the poor transcription), etc. etc. Borrowings are a natural part of any language. Russian has its fair share of them, just like English, French, German, Polish, Japanese... you get my drift. I don't get this uproar about there being "too many English words in Polish" - how about too many Latin words in English then? BTW, most of your so-called English borrowings in Polish are actually borrowings taken straight from Latin and Greek, as Strzyga has already pointed out.

People who get so excited about knowing some English that they actually replace Polish words with their English equivalents are quite another matter - I don't like those. Ponglish horrors such as "konto personalne", "płacić taksa" or "być bizy" make me see red. Interestingly, the people who express themselves in this manner usually have a very poor command of both Polish and English.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
12 Jan 2010 #100
actually these words did not come into Polish via English but directly from Latin, which was the language of the educated from the Middle Ages on, until as late as 19th/20th century. Polish didn't have much contact with English then.

Perhaps also from French. The Russian royal family spoke French and napoleon spent a bit of time in Poland, as well as guys like Mickiewicz and Chopin spending a lot of time in France.

As for Polish not having much contact with English until 19th C, what about the large Scopts migrations in 16th-17th-18th centuries? Granted, many would have spoken Scots, but also a fair few would have spoken English.
strzyga 2 | 993
13 Jan 2010 #101
Perhaps also from French. The Russian royal family spoke French and napoleon spent a bit of time in Poland, as well as guys like Mickiewicz and Chopin spending a lot of time in France.

Yes, French was another abundant source of borrowings, especially in the 18th and 19th c., when it was spoken on everyday basis in most aristocratic and noble homes.

As for Polish not having much contact with English until 19th C, what about the large Scopts migrations in 16th-17th-18th centuries? Granted, many would have spoken Scots, but also a fair few would have spoken English.

Still I struggle trying to remember any word that might have been a borrowing from either English or Scots inserted into Polish by these immigrants... apart from the word "kilt" :) Well, there must have been some. The thing might have been that the Scots assimilated very well, they never formed any kind of ghetto or diaspora so they probably just learnt Polish and mixed with the rest of the population. It's an interesting issue, actually, I'd like to read more about it. Did he Scots bring their families to Poland with them? What I know about it comes mostly from Sienkiewicz's books - there was a Scottish regiment at the court of Prince Radziwiłł, and there was the handsome Ketling, rivalling with Wołodyjowski for Krzysia's hand. Shame that I don't know much more.

There were many ethnic groups in Poland in these days, we had Scots, Armenian merchants, Ruthenians, Hungarians, Vallachians, Germans, Dutch groups, even Turks and Tatars - a true multi-kulti, each group with their language and insertions into Polish. And Polish is very good with assimilating borrowed words, they soon acquire various endings, prefixes and suffixes and get assigned their proper place in the tables of declinations and conjugations :) So, all in all, I'm not particularly worried about the future of the Polish language, it will survive and manage very well.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
13 Jan 2010 #102
It's an interesting issue, actually, I'd like to read more about it.

If you look at electricscotland.com and look for 'scots around the world', there are three books "Scots in Poland" and "Scots in Germany" "Scots in Prussia" which deal with the matter in depth. They not only brought their families but established guilds, or 'brotherhoods' in many towns.
strzyga 2 | 993
13 Jan 2010 #103
Trevek

Thanks, great site!
Trevek 26 | 1,702
13 Jan 2010 #104
Thanks, great site!

You're welcome, always happy to spread the word.
There's also a recent paperback book called "Agents of Change", which tels about 19th Century Scots and Engineers in Poland/Russia.
Lyzko
13 Jan 2010 #105
Madzia,

We Anglos don't raise a rucus over Latin-derived words in English, since the "invasion" happened sooooo long ago, and ever so gradually, that those words were naturally allowed by sheer time to work their way into the fabric of our tongue. There may originally have been a conscious desire to expropriate Latin and Greek words to replace the more workaday Germanic (Anglo-Saxon) based ones, but, for all intents and purposes, this is no longer an issue.

The key year in the transition of English from 'Anglish' to 'Anglois', if you like, was 1066 AD when the Normans landed in Britain and our language has never been the same since! We can thank the Normans (originally Norsemen though, oddly enough!) for all our silent letters and wacky spelling etc. ad nauseum
Brian Barker
13 Jan 2010 #106
I think that the whole world needs a modern lingua franca, as well :)

My vote goes to the planned language, Esperanto. I say this as a native English speaker!
Trevek 26 | 1,702
14 Jan 2010 #107
My vote goes to the planned language, Esperanto.

The problem with that is when you think of how many people actually speak English now, and how many people actually speak Esperanto (4-5 million at a guess). The logistics of teaching it are mind-blowing. Also, if you consider how big the industry for something like ELT is, how easy would it be to generate Esperanto to a workable level (especially when French and German can't compete with English)?
skysoulmate 14 | 1,297
14 Jan 2010 #108
NO! They're all influenced by Greek!

Well, I sort of said that, didn't I? ;)

"...It used to be Greek, then Latin, then French, then German and Russian, now English, soon Mandarin and after that Marsian or maybe Klingon?..."

Even the old Greek language was influenced by other, even older languages...
Trevek 26 | 1,702
14 Jan 2010 #109
Ah, but they are AL influenced by Greek. Funnily enough, in that clip I attached he says the Greek word for winter is something like 'khimona"... couldn't this be the root of zimno?
strzyga 2 | 993
14 Jan 2010 #110
I thought she was asking about "kimono"?
Trevek 26 | 1,702
14 Jan 2010 #111
She was, but he mentions a Greek word for winter (which he says is the base of the word Kimono) which could (after a shots of vodka) sound like zimno.
king polkakamon - | 544
14 Jan 2010 #112
Yes,khimonas.But you use a lot of greek words.For example hydor=water,you have hydrogen,hydraulic,hydroplane etc.Philo=love,you have philosophy,philology,philanthropy etc.

In new greek philo has changed meaning and means kiss.Philos means friend.
Ecoia means home you have economy,ecology etc.

We have slavic words in greek like kurva,platan,svarna,voevoda,stani,doma etc.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
14 Jan 2010 #113
Do you know whether the etymology of zimno/zima is Greek? I've always wondered since i saw that film.
strzyga 2 | 993
15 Jan 2010 #114
She was, but he mentions a Greek word for winter (which he says is the base of the word Kimono) which could (after a shots of vodka) sound like zimno.

Make it a 0.7 l and you'll find a relation to "chilly" too :)

There might be some common ProtoIndoEuropean root though.

voevoda,

really? and what does it stand for in Greek?
mafketis 21 | 7,619
15 Jan 2010 #115
I attached he says the Greek word for winter is something like 'khimona"... couldn't this be the root of zimno?

not sure, according to my source, the Greek word can be transliterated cheimonas, with ch roughly as in German ich, ei = Polish i and accent on the o (written with omega instead of omicron). It's a masculine word.

for purposes of historical reconstruction, the n in zimno doesn't count as it's an adjective ending (not sure what if anything the n in the Greek example does).

I also notice Greek choma for ziemia, so there just might be a connection between initial Greek ch and Polish soft z or it could well be coincidence (I'd say it's a 50/50 chance either way).
Michal - | 1,865
16 Jan 2010 #116
Magdalena
I was watching M Jak Milosc on Polonia T.V. this evening and they even used the English term 'baby boom' just like in English.
Honest George 1 | 105
16 Jan 2010 #117
Too many English words in the Polish language!

The more, the merrier ! ............. much needed for progress.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
16 Jan 2010 #118
Interesting. Thanks.
Still, Polish is all Greek to me anyway!
king polkakamon - | 544
16 Jan 2010 #119
till, Polish is all Greek to me anyway!

To me polish is like russian.
Trevek 26 | 1,702
17 Jan 2010 #120
they even used the English term 'baby boom' just like in English

10 years ago there was a shop in Warsaw called that, although by using the Polish sound system, it was called "Baby Bum". It would probably be under police investigation if it had such a title in UK.


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