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Why is there no Polish word for Tacky? No, really, why?


magpie 6 | 133
30 Dec 2011 #1
The three Eng-Pol dictionaries that I've looked at have no Polish word for tacky. A lesser man might say that this was no surprise, but I shan't go down that route.

I was trying to explain 'tacky' in reference to there being too much reklama (£odz city centre being a case in point) and the family said to use 'Kitsch'. To me isn't the correct word as whilst there is a lot of overlap, they can be quite different: e.g. Some Art-Deco wallpaper may be kitsch, whereas 17 year old girls all wearing garter belts in simply tacky (as in another conversation) but not kitsch as such.

From the Princeton Uni dictionary:

Tacky: tastelessly showy; "a flash car"; "a flashy ring"; "garish colors"; "a gaudy costume"; "loud sport shirts"; "a meretricious yet stylish book"; "tawdry ornaments"

Kitsch: effusively or insincerely emotional; "maudlin expressions of sympathy"; "mushy effusiveness"; "a schmaltzy song"; "sentimental soap operas"; "slushy poetry"

Any suggestions...other than kitsch?
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
30 Dec 2011 #2
The meaning of the Polish word "kicz" is much closer to "tacky" than to "kitsch".
But I think "tandeta" (noun) and "tandetny" (adjective) would be a better choice.

"Tandetny" means cheap, trashy, tacky, rubbishy.
OP magpie 6 | 133
30 Dec 2011 #3
Thanks, I feel both empowered and enlightened.
emha - | 92
30 Dec 2011 #4
"tandeta"

is OK but "badziewie" is the best :)
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
30 Dec 2011 #5
"badziewie"

Not bad at all, but please bear in mind that "tandeta" is more or less neutral where "badziewie" is very informal. ;-)
Seanus 15 | 19,706
30 Dec 2011 #6
Magda is right. Oklepany might also work, no? Banalny?
OP magpie 6 | 133
30 Dec 2011 #7
A quick google image search on badziewie found this type of thing:

cheap tat

whereas tandeta found these:

struth

so there seems to be a big link between tandeta and weddings... which shouldn't be a surprise I guess.

Funnily enough, the one in the clouds makes me feel more queasy than any other (dunnhedanielcraigseyes?). Sadly, I just know my mrs will say "ładny, nie?" when I show it to her. Sad face.
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
30 Dec 2011 #8
Oklepany might also work, no? Banalny?

These would mean more "trite", "boring", "commonplace".
OP magpie 6 | 133
30 Dec 2011 #9
or "banal" perhaps? ;)
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
30 Dec 2011 #10
Banalny and banal - kicz and kitsch...
Look almost the same, sound almost the same, but I wouldn't automatically replace one with the other. ;-)

I think the difference between banalny and banal is not so much in the meaning as in the usage.
"Banalny" is colloquial. Maybe I'm wrong, but "banal" sounds rather high-brow to me.
OP magpie 6 | 133
30 Dec 2011 #11
"Banalny" is colloquial. Maybe I'm wrong, but "banal" sounds rather high-brow to me.

No, I think you're right.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
30 Dec 2011 #12
What's the difference between trite and tacky for you, Magda?

Morrissey once sang, "love at first sight may sound trite, but it's true you know". Trite is quite similar to tacky there. In the sense of rubbish, I mean.
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
30 Dec 2011 #13
difference between trite and tacky for you

Here goes, off the top of my head, no dictionaries:

trite - something repeated too often to seem sincere / banal

tacky - cheap, nasty, garish

I wouldn't say "this poster is trite" or "what a trite table lamp"
Seanus 15 | 19,706
30 Dec 2011 #14
So trite is more about a notion whereas tacky is more about things? Generally true!
strzyga 2 | 993
30 Dec 2011 #15
But I think "tandeta" (noun) and "tandetny" (adjective) would be a better choice.

seconded

"badziewie"

this mostly refers to quality; a phone that breaks down ten minutes after you turn it on for the first time or a T-shirt that gets deformed after the first washing is badziewie, even if the design is nice.

"Tandeta" refers to both the quality and the looks.
Seanus 15 | 19,706
30 Dec 2011 #16
Two of the best have spoken, magpie. I'm not Polish but know enough to see what they have said is right.
OP magpie 6 | 133
31 Dec 2011 #17
Not only am I a more educated person now, based on repetition of use, I imagine that my pronunciation will be perfect within the week. ;)
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
15 Feb 2016 #18
trying to explain 'tacky'

As a noun ("tackiness") maybe "ostentacyjne bezguście" would be appropriate?
As an adjective -- ostentacyjnie bezgustny. A bit clumsy and unwieldy but does it coem close to conveying what you perceive as being "tacky"?


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