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Need help spelling a Polish word (Mosiek?)

27 Sep 2012 #1
My grandparents often used Polish phrases when saying insults, eg dupek. Unfortunately, since they only spoke Polish and I had never seen it written, I often don't know how to spell words. I cannot for the life of me figure out the spelling of a word they always used for us as kids. It sounded like "moo-sheck." Help please?
pawian 176 | 15,395
28 Sep 2012 #2
It sounded like "moo-sheck."

Maybe Mosiek?
1 Oct 2012 #3
The answer is : mozesz which means :you may/you are allowed to ...
Good luck with polish :)
krakus - | 12
1 Oct 2012 #4
It's mosiek.

It was a slightly derogatory name for a Jew but it can also be used to describe a dumb person ;)
Turbowicz 4 | 13
1 Oct 2012 #5
I recommend Prof. Swan's online PL<->EN dictionary at the University of Pittsburgh. It's outstanding:

Several powerful search features are available even if you don't know how to spell a word correctly.

Seems that Mosiek is to Jewish men as "Paddy" is to Irish. Paddy, derived from Patrick, became a rather derisive label for male Irish immigrants in the era before equal-opportunity labor laws came into existence. For example, my dziadzia told a story of looking for a job in Chicago before WWI, and hearing that a restaurant was hiring dishwashers, went to the restaurant to apply in person. The manager, hearing Franek's accented English, chased him away, shouting, "Didn't ya see the sign in the window, polack?" The sign read, "Dishwasher wanted. No Negroes, Irish, or Polish need apply."

"Mosiek" is derived from Moshe, from Hebrew as written in English, or mojżesz. It wasn't uncommon for Jewish men to call themselves Mosiek. My mother said that more sophisticated Polish speakers referred to wyznania mojżeszowego, rather than "żydzi."


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