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So why did you give up learning Polish?


Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
21 Aug 2019 #61
The main difference is not brevity but clarity. "powiedziala mi" is shorter than "she told me", but I will take the latter any time because it's clearer who told me. It was "she", not he.

The who and the gender identifier in the Polish version is that single letter "a". In the English version, it's the noun - up front and in your face - "she". Can't miss it - written or spoken.

English -1. Polish - 0.
gumishu 11 | 5,017
21 Aug 2019 #62
powiedziała mi is not shorter she told me - it's 5 syllables against 3
Chemikiem 6 | 2,088
21 Aug 2019 #63
The who and the gender identifier in the Polish version is that single letter "a"

Exactly, and if you understand Polish, it's as clear as the 'she' in the English version. I don't see the problem.

I will take the latter any time because it's clearer who told me. It was "she", not he.

This is the type of statement I would expect to hear from someone learning the language, not from a supposedly native speaker who would accept the grammar without question.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
21 Aug 2019 #64
Oh, God, please help them.
One more time: that single letter "a" at the end of "powiedzial" can easily be missed in writing, reading, or hearing. "She" cannot. Duh!
Chemikiem 6 | 2,088
21 Aug 2019 #65
Not if you're a native speaker. I am not a native speaker, but I can honestly say that I do not miss endings of words, plus you have to take the context of the sentence into account also.
mafketis 21 | 7,408
21 Aug 2019 #66
that single letter "a" at the end of "powiedzial" can easily be missed in writing, reading, or hearing.

By non-native speakers (and/or very poor learners) maybe... the idea of a native speaker thinking 'powiedziała' doesn't indicate gender very clearly is.... just very strange.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
21 Aug 2019 #67
Are we playing gay games now? Fine. Powiedziala has a vagina. Powiedzial has a penis. OK now?
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #68
"Mowic" vs. "powiedzic" was explained to me more or less as follows through these two examples:

(On the telephone - person to another outside the conversation) "Chwileczke, Marysia MOWILA, ze ona jest chora a pozostaje dzis wieczor w domu." vs. "Nauczycielka POWIEDZIALA mi, ze zdalem egzamin!"

In the first example, the sentence might be adequately translated as "Just a moment, Marysia [just] SAID that she's sick and will
stay home this evening."

However, the second sentence, "The teacher TOLD me that I passed [the exam]."

The above distinction is so subtle to a native Anglophone such as myself, that frankly, I didn't get the difference at all when I first started to learn Polish:-) In English, only a pluperfect pain in the rear end hair splitter of a pedant would say that one sentence is more "correct" than the other.

In Polish apparently, the distinction is the difference between grammatically proper as opposed to improper usage.
kaprys 2 | 1,886
21 Aug 2019 #69
Hmmm ...

Powiedziała mi ... -She told me ...

Now let's skip one letter in both languages:

Powiedział mi ... - he told me ....

Magic :)

See Rich, you shouldn't have given up learning Polish :)
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #70
There ya go!
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
21 Aug 2019 #71
...nowhere. Say "she" and "he" and see the difference. If you can't, you are deaf.

And, then, there is the sentence structure. In the English version, it's noun and verb. In that order. In the Polish version: no noun. It's implied. Use "ty" and be ready to apologize.

I don't need this crap. It's all yours. Enjoy it.
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #72
Still don't get your beef with Polish, but, sure I will one of these decades.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
21 Aug 2019 #73
My "beef" in not with the Polish language. It's with the Polish people who believe or pretend that being Polish is some gift from heavens bestowed on the very best and that their language is wonderful and special.

Their "beef" with me is that I discovered all of the above to be nothing but patriotic lies and dared to say it out loud.

No, I didn't like Poland, I didn't like Poles, I didn't like Polish language, I didn't like the fattening Polish food, I didn't like two-month-long summers, I didn't like my lousy pay, I didn't like small apartments with the washer and dryer stacked vertically. I don't even like the way the Polish consulate operates here in Chicago. An average police station here is friendlier.

I don't recall what I liked in Poland, so I left. No, Poland is not the center of the universe.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,418
21 Aug 2019 #74
It certainly isn't.
And English is, as you say, a far superior language.
But that is not to say that there is nothing good about Poland.
You can't see anything at all good about Poles and Poland.
But you are very wrong.There is so much in Polish history, culture, geography, architecture,cuisine, poetry, song, etc etc.
The Poles and Poland just cannot be wiped aside by your newly aquired American hand as worthless.
You really need to re evaluate your opinions, because they are blatantly wrong, or shut up.
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #75
Name me any nation, the US above all, which doesn't believe that THEIRS and theirs alone is a gift bestowed upon them
by the Allmighty, above and beyond all others!!

So long as you dislike Polish people as much as you claim you do, I'd imagine you'd have a similar complaint about
the US, Germany, France, Italy etc.

Now tell me I'm wrong.

@Milo, unless you're being sarky, NO language is linguistically, culturally or morally superior to another.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,418
21 Aug 2019 #76
Now tell me I'm wrong.

You are not wrong, he is such an angry old man that he hates America too.
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #77
Yeah, looks like.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,418
21 Aug 2019 #78
@Milo, unless you're being sarky, NO language is linguistically, culturally or morally superior to another

I am not being sarky, English is linguistically by far the most superior language in the world.
This subject is for another thread, but English has so many advantages that it will become,some may say that it already is, the global language.
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
21 Aug 2019 #79
"I am not being sarky,..."

You're right, you're being unthinkingly ethnocentric, not to mention just plain wrongheaded!
Shakespeare, Milton, Dickens, and Hardy ain't the only dance in town, mate:-) The Poles have Mickiewicz,
the Germans have Goethe, Schiller..., the French have Montaigne, Chateaubriand, Proust and so forth.

No language is superior to any other, this has been linguistically proven by people far more enlightened than
either of us.

Surprised at your ignorance, Milo, I'm being serious. Some of your posts really had me fooled.
Oh well, go figure people.

By the way gang, Polish (unlike Russian, for example) is called in linguistics a "pronoun drop" language, meaning the pronoun can be omitted, except for emphasis.

This can be confusing at times.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
22 Aug 2019 #80
You really need to re evaluate your opinions, because they are blatantly wrong, or shut up.

I can be wrong only on facts. Opinions are never wrong. In my post #73, I used the word "liked" 9 f*cking times and you are telling me that I am wrong??? The word liked is about personal OPINIONS, not verifiable FACTS, and, thus, not open to a debate. Opinions would be open to a debate only if one side claimed that their opinions are correct. I never claimed that my opinions are correct and yours are not.

You're right, you're being unthinkingly ethnocentric, not to mention just plain wrongheaded!

How about debating the subject of languages without getting personal? Are you out of the debate ammo? Why does everybody fall into this MO eventually?

Of course, English is number one. If the headcount were a factor, the pilots and the towers all over the world would be speaking Chinese. I haven't been there, so I am asking: In what language does the UN General Assembly conduct its daily business? What about the signs like STOP or AMBULANCE? Are they in Spanish in Israel or Saudi Arabia or in English? What about the signs you see at the airports everywhere, Japan and China included? Are those in Russian?

"pronoun drop" ...meaning the pronoun can be omitted, except for emphasis. This can be confusing at times.

My point to the letter. I don't like any language with dropped pronouns because I don't like confusion. Polish included.
mafketis 21 | 7,408
22 Aug 2019 #81
I don't recall what I liked in Poland, so I left.

Then why hang out in a place where people like Poland and the Polish language...

And of course real native speakers internalize the difference between ty and pan/pani very early and don't have to learn it and even if there are ambiguous situations are excedingly unlikely to find the distinction bothersome

your complaints are the type that english speakers are more likely to have

dropped pronouns because I don't like confusion

then you must hate english spelling.... how are each of the following pronounced?

tear

read

live

wind

record

address

pretty confusing.....
Ziemowit 12 | 3,588
22 Aug 2019 #82
English is linguistically by far the most superior language in the world.

In what sense English is "linguistically the most superior language in the world"?
Chemikiem 6 | 2,088
22 Aug 2019 #83
Say "she" and "he" and see the difference. If you can't, you are deaf.

You mean hear the difference, not see. Do the same with powiedział and powiedziała. If you can't hear the difference, you are deaf.

Use "ty" and be ready to apologize.

As I said yesterday, your comments are typical of someone learning the language, not a native speaker.

I didn't like Poland, I didn't like Poles, I didn't like Polish language, I didn't like the fattening Polish food,

So why are you on this forum given that you clearly have a dislike of everything Polish?
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
22 Aug 2019 #84
As I said yesterday

Say "she" and "he" and see the difference.

If you can "say", I can "see". To help you better understand my posts, here are the synonyms of see, with those that do not involve eyes in bold type.

see (synonyms): behold, catch, descry, discern, distinguish, espy, eye, look (at), note, notice, observe, perceive, regard, remark, sight, spot, spy, view, witness
Ziemowit 12 | 3,588
22 Aug 2019 #85
Aren't you sometimes bored with your rants on Poles and the Polish language, RM?
Wincig 2 | 185
22 Aug 2019 #86
the Germans have Goethe, Schiller..., the French have Montaigne, Chateaubriand, Proust and so forth

dear Lyzko, haven't you just given a ranking, albeit implicitly?? 1. Anglos (4 writers/poet names), 2. French (3), 3. Germans (2) 4. Poles (1!).. Just kidding of course, but sometimes subconscious plays games!
Chemikiem 6 | 2,088
22 Aug 2019 #87
here are the synonyms of see, with those that do not involve eyes in bold type.

And? If you substitute 'see' for any of the words typed in bold, it would still be wrong because you followed up with, " If you can't, you are deaf".

My only point was that you can equally well hear the difference between powiedział/powiedziała as you can between he/she.
Lyzko 23 | 6,673
22 Aug 2019 #88
Hey out there,

I think we're confusing speaker percentage world wide with alleged language "superiority".
Once Latin was the international tongue in which scholars from far flung European countries corresponded with one another in writing (when people knew how to write LOL).

Later on, French overtook that role and it was indeed a mighty tough act to follow. Eventually, that inheritance fell for quite a long while to German, later to be replaced more or less, less than more, by English, at least in global variety following British Standard:-)

Compared with many other languages, English has long since shed her "prehensile" tail of case endings and a degree of morphological richness and synchresis, charactaristics typical of most synthetic languages such as German, Polish, and Finnish as compared with analytic languages, namely English.

The beauty of certain of the world's spoken treasures, is that they allow the contemporary citizen to read and understand much, though not all, of that country's past without too much trouble.

A modern-day Anglophone of average schooling wouldn't know what they're looking at if confronted with Beowulf, even Canterbury Tales in the original and without annotation.

Not so in Iceland, Turkey or any number of other societies which see their history correctly, not as a rupture or breach with the present, but instead as merely a continuum into the future.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,499
22 Aug 2019 #89
it would still be wrong because you followed up with, " If you can't, you are deaf".

You were correct and I was wrong.
Now, you can frame the above sentence because it's the first time in the history of this forum. Notice that I didn't follow the above admission with a but..or on the other hand...or however as typical weasel phrases. Instead, I promise to do my best not to create further evidence that I am not perfect.
mafketis 21 | 7,408
22 Aug 2019 #90
Not so in Iceland, Turkey

A few years ago a Turkish university student said he couldn't understand textbooks written 30 or 40 years ago (a result of the excesses language reform)

And modern Turks can't understand Ottoman texts (even if they know the Arabic alphabet or if the Ottoman is latinized).


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