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Polish or any Slavic language key to any other Slavic languages?

spell of bliss
5 Oct 2006 #1
if i've studied polish, will languages like ukrainian or russian or czech be easier to learn? i wouldn't expect them to function identically to polish but will learning any 1 of them be much easier than sum1 who doesn't speak or know any other slavic language? or not really?
Huegel 1 | 296
5 Oct 2006 #2
Not sure if i can answer with any degree of certainty but it seems all (most) poles can understand Czech without any difficulty however, a russian friend of mine said she didn't understand polish at all.
OP spell of bliss
5 Oct 2006 #3
well of course. as a native speaker of english, i dont think i'd automatically understand other germanic languages like dutch or swedish etc. unless i grew up in such environments at a very yung age.
Huegel 1 | 296
5 Oct 2006 #4
Sorry mate, i was trying to imply that, there must be more similarities in Czech (making it easier to learn?) than there was in Russian. Guess i should be more direct. hehe
OP spell of bliss
5 Oct 2006 #5
nie ma sprawy amigo
glowa 1 | 291
6 Oct 2006 #6
Czech, Slovakian, Ukrainian are relatively easy to pick up once you speak Polish. More difficult is to learn writing. Russian requires more of an effort. And writing cyrilic is hard. I can steal read it but writing is difficult.
iwona 12 | 542
6 Oct 2006 #7
I would say that slovakian is probably the easiest to understand for polish person.

I met here in England Slovakian girl and we were talking in English , later her friend said "why don't you speak in your own languages" we did and we understood each other quite well.

I never hear Ukrainian. Russian is not really similar. I think that languages in previous Jugoslavia ( I am nto so sure how many languages they have now) was not so difficult to understand.
Matyjasz 2 | 1,543
6 Oct 2006 #8
That's true. Slovakian language is very similar to polish.

When it comes to Czech tongue, for a Polish speaker, it has to be the most hilarious language in the world. It's probably due to it's silly accent and some of their names for animals, items, products, professions, etc...

For example, let's take the word "pigeon". In Polish it's "gołąb", while in Czech it's "dachowy obersraniec", what in polish means more or less something like "something that is taking a shit on the roof". :)

I never hear Ukrainian.

I've met few Ukrainians, very friendly people, but what was really striking for me, that they only spoke Russian. It's kind of sad.
iwona 12 | 542
6 Oct 2006 #9
I am surprised. i thought that when Ukraina got independent people would like to speak their own language not Russian.
6 Oct 2006 #10
and they do but mostly in the western part...
Huegel 1 | 296
6 Oct 2006 #11
"dachowy obersraniec", what in polish means more or less something like "something that is taking a shit on the roof

I love that!! So much more descriptive than just plain old pigeon! :)
polaca 1 | 76
6 Oct 2006 #12
will languages like ukrainian or russian or czech be easier to learn?

I dont know czech and ukrainian but russian has very similar grammar to polish so for sure will be difficult for foreigns.
Kowalski 7 | 621
6 Oct 2006 #13
Polish could be a key to other languages I think. I have never studied Russian or Ukrainian but I do watch Russian Tv occasionally and suprisingly to myself I figure I could understand a lot if stayed focused. The same must be with other Slavic languages. So If you know one it would be rather easy to undestand other ones. I would say just in days one could be getting some serious understandig :). Now SPEAKING other language is anothere level probably.
plg 17 | 263
6 Oct 2006 #14
yes west slavik and other slavik languages are connected or so says my professor at uni
15 Dec 2006 #15
I'm from Odessa, Ukraine and I speak Russian as well, if you go to Ukraine, you'll find that in cities people don't speak Ukranian. Ukrainian is spoken mostly in Rural areas. In terms of Russians understanding Ukrainian, or the other way around. It's quite similar except for the pronounciation which to me seems kinda funny. If you speak any slavic language fluently, you have a key to understanding quite alot from other slavic languages. I personally think Polish is closest to the Eastern Slavic Speaking Region. Many times, it's more understandable to read another slavic language because some Slavic speaking nations may say a certain word in a different pace so to say and you won't catch it unless you read lyrics of the conversation.

zdes htoto pa ruskie gavarit?

Does anyone here speak Russian?
rafik 18 | 589
15 Dec 2006 #16

I'm from Odessa

hi is nice to hear from someone from the ukraine.i was in odessa a few years is a lovely city.i and my wife have traveled from zamosc in poland to lviv and caught a train to day we went to symferopol and further to a small town on the coas of the black sea.what a fantastic time we had there!i hope one day w'll go there again.

greetings from a polish man in the uk.

zdes htoto pa ruskie gavarit?

Does anyone here speak Russian?

the main rule on this forum is that we all speak in english here regardless of our nationality.


i loved your vodka. it's much better than the polish vodka.
FISZ 24 | 2,116
15 Dec 2006 #17
vse ruski pizda


...oops that wasn't english.
rafik 18 | 589
15 Dec 2006 #18
vse ruski pizda

oops that's very rude ,fisz:)
Eurola 4 | 1,900
15 Dec 2006 #19
I think it is true for most languages. If you speak Italian you are more likely to understand Spanish, if you are polish you will understand more Slavic languages. Most of them anyway. If you are from the Anglo-Germanic brood, you should pick up words accordingly.

See the ugly words above? I understand them even tough the last time I had a homework in Russian was in the 70-s.
15 Dec 2006 #20
I notice some Polish words are similar to Spanish. Why is that?
Eurola 4 | 1,900
15 Dec 2006 #21
Some words might be similar in spelling. Example?

My Mexican friend gave me a letter to read. I read the words as I would read them in Polish. Most of the words I read sounded like a Mexican would pronounce them. I did not recognize most the words, but I was saying them correct. How about that?
15 Dec 2006 #22
Yes, that's so true that Polish and Spanish is pronounced very much the same. They both have the "r" that rolls and other alphabets that are pronounced in the same way. I can't think of all the words I've heard at the moment that are similar, but a couple of examples are "co" and "que", "pistolet" and "pistola" and just alot of others.

The funny thing is that in Spanish the word curva is pronounced exactly like the Polish swear word. But in Spanish it means "curve".
Eurola 4 | 1,900
15 Dec 2006 #23
The same in Italian for curva. :)

How about "prezydent" and 'el presidente". Anybody can understand this one. :)
I thought that "que" would sound more like 'ke' not "co" (tzo)? Do you know Spanish?
15 Dec 2006 #24
Yes, I do know some Spanish. I had to learn a foreign language in college in order to get a degree. I wonder why the similarities. Maybe all languages have something in common.
Eurola 4 | 1,900
16 Dec 2006 #25
When I was learning English, many words in the dictionary sounded similar, but they were pronounced different. I had French in high school in Poland, so it seemed like the same word could be pronounced different in Polish, then in French and English.

I guess, after centuries of mixing we are a one, big, happy family who sometimes have strong disagreements, but love each other nonetheless.

A lot of words are borrowed from other languages. Everybody in the world seems to know "OK" even tough it is not a part of any language, but English.
FISZ 24 | 2,116
16 Dec 2006 #26
oops that's very rude ,fisz

I was just chacking everyone...since we're talking about similarities...I see you got it. I'm only playing though. No personal issues with Russians.
16 Dec 2006 #27
I haven't been in Odessa for 8 years now, I hear it's pretty bad. Anyways, glad you like it.
17 Jan 2007 #28
I'm from Chernivtsi in Ukraine and can say that I understand Polish without any difficulty. We always used to joke that Polish speakers were just trying to speak Ukrainian with a hot potato in their mouths. Russian is also very similar and in Ukraine, we all speak Russian as a native or second language anyways. I, for example, grew up to a ukrainian mom and Russian dad.
Dagmara 1 | 38
19 Jan 2007 #29
The words that are so similar in languages that come from different language groups usually have the same roots in Latin and/or Greek.
29 Jan 2007 #30
I think it is so much easier to understand and to learn languages like Russian, Ukrainina, and even Bosnian once you know Polish. Not only are there many words which you don't have to learn because you already know them (f.eks: Dobrydzien Russian) = Dziendobry (Polish), Dziewuzka (Russian) = Dziewczyna (Polish) etc - remember these are only a very small selection) but also such things as pronounciation which is very often the same and grammar also. I have begun to learn Russian lately and to be honest I was shocked to see how similar Polish and Russian is cause I had always heard the opposite. But that doesn't mean that you still gotta work hard to learn a new language...

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