"On jest mężczyzną."

Translation:He is a man.

December 10, 2015

70 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/AnthonyFrancis01

Why is the instrumental case used here?

December 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1886

Apparently, Polish (and other Slavic languages) use the instrumental case with "to be" and "to become".
https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Polish/Noun_cases#Instrumental

December 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Nerdator

The use of Instrumental in this sentence is kind of weird for Russian. 'To be' can take Instrumental, and, now that I think of it, it only doesn't take instrumental in the Present-Tense Indicative-Mood forms, where it has to be Nominative.

Taking the Wikipedia examples, this:

To jest moja żona. - This is my wife.

is the only construction you can use in this situation in Russian (although it would be Instrumental in Past/Future Indicative, in Conditional and Imperative). It might have something to do with the fact that 'to be' is almost always omitted in the Present Tense in Russian.

December 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Ilya583989

No, it's not the only constriction you can use in this situation in Russian.

Он является мужчиной.

This is Present Tense + Instrumental

August 31, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/TARDISToni

Правда? Does this have a slightly different meaning or nuance from either "Он - человек" or "Он мужской" ? I don't remember this expression as being in common usage.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/fenqhwang

It is very formal, so «он является мужчиной» is not a great example, but otherwise it is rather common legalese.

Also, it’s «он — мужчина», not «*он мужской».

June 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AnthonyFrancis01

Thanks

December 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/hincia06

It is realy hard to understand for people who are not from Poland or it is sometimes even hard for Polish people

September 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/NewtonFrei4

I see the word and I read it... But I can make no connection between them! Just wow...

December 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BaconChomper

Agreed. Is there a pronunciation guide anywhere? Would be very helpful.

December 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BaconChomper

Thank you.

December 16, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

They will probably supply it with time. It is in beta now and a lot of corrections are necessary at such a stage. It will be easier, when you learn how to pronounce individual sounds. Believe it or not, we write word as we can hear them in Polish. You just have to know what represents what. "ę" and "ą" are pretty easy, if you know French, as they are longer versions of two French sounds. "ż" is a bit like "s" in leisure, and "cz" is like "ch" in champ. Good luck!

December 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BaconChomper

What about dz and cz?

December 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

Sorry, I made a mistake in my post, it was late and I was tired. Now it has been edited. So "cz" is pronounced like ch in champ, while ch is pronounced like normal h. (there is, theoretically, a small difference, but people do not differentiate it anymore; it is the same with u and ó - they used to sound a bit different, but now people pronounce them the same way). It is tricky to describe "dz" - it is as if you wanted to pronounce d and z at the same time. The pronunciation of "ds" in the word "lads" comes very close to it. Check this out to get some idea (w is pronounced like v) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pl-dzwon-2.ogg

December 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/timstellmach

While 'ch' and 'h' are indeed pronounced the same in (most dialiects of) Polish, that sound is not the same as the English 'h'. It's like the Yiddish 'chutzpah' or the Scots 'loch.'

January 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/timstellmach

In response to the question "Isn't the Scottish ch more throaty?" (which for me is too deep in the reply chain to have a "Reply" button).

In my admittedly limited experience, that tends to get exaggerated. It's easy to overdo and sound like you're coughing something up.

In any case, the point is that the sound is produced by approaching the roof of the mouth with the back of the tongue (whereas the English 'h' uses the front for words like "huge", and an open, breathy sound for words like "hat").

Wikipedia has a thorough article about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voiceless_velar_fricative

January 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

Isn't the Scottish ch more throaty?

January 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/BaconChomper

Thanks.

December 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

No problem at all, good luck! :) BTW, about the way we write words as we read them. There are several exceptions to this rule, only several ones, I believe, e.g. word with "auto" (u is pronounced like "ł", which is pronounced almost like English "w"). We have ortography variants which both sound the same these days, unless you are an actor from the old school, and while they are written as they are spoken, you just have to learn when a particular variant is used. There are rules for their usage in most cases, they just have to be memorized, but this is important only in writing, naturally. A lot of people in Poland have problems with it and generally the more you read, the better you write. Only in a selected number on cases it can influence the meaning, e.g. żyć (to live) and rzyć (old-fashioned, vulgar and not used anymore -a person's behind) sound the same. But do not worry about it, it just try to learn the word's spelling as you learn them and the rest comes with reading. I have also found a decent webpage that might be useful to you and to others too http://grzegorj.w.interiowo.pl/gram/en/gram00.html

December 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraTraczyk

Dz sounds like "Dj" in Django.

December 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

I disagree. Unless you mean "dż", which indeed sounds like dj in Django.

December 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

In a way, yea, :) "dzi" is a bit like a soft "dż" :)

December 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraTraczyk

Ohhhhhh you know what? I was thinking of "dzie," which I think is nearly equivalent to "dż." My mistake.

December 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AcadiaBird

I'm confused between jest and jestem. Can someone explain?

June 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

Polish language will have different forms of verbs for different persons, which is obviously not usually present in English, although it is with this particular verb: I am vs He is. And "jestem" is exactly "(I) am", while "jest" = "(he/she/it) is". Because of this conjugation, the personal pronoun is very often dropped, because the form of the verb makes it quite obvious what person we are talking about.

Check wiktionary for more details.

June 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/KalieA55

Jestem - is normally when you're talking about yourself. Means " I am"

Jest - Normally used when speaking about other people , Can be used for "She/he is"

October 26, 2018

[deactivated user]

    Why does it not have the special letters to type?

    December 10, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    It does now.

    December 11, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Michael_Edwin

    Must we use "On" in this case, or can we simply say, "Jest mężczyzną"?

    December 26, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Bearneard

    It is more natural with "on". In the third person we omit personal pronouns only in very specific situation, e.g. when we stress something or the person is mentioned in the preceeding sentence.

    December 26, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/vandemoerw12071

    Can someone give me link where the pronounciation of this language is explained?

    July 23, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/suzikrawczyk

    why / when do we use the a, with the tail on the end of a noun, like man.?

    December 18, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    ą is pronounced with a nasal sound like the French "on".
    This link explains why the noun is declined into the instrumental case:
    https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Polish/Noun_cases#Instrumental
    This link explains how to decline different nouns into the instrumental case:
    http://mowicpopolsku.com/polish-grammar/cases/instrumental/

    December 18, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Christophe561392

    Good way 2 learn

    December 30, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/JackyDW

    Would a good reasoning for use of the instrumental case here be "I exist by means of a man?"

    March 6, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/mihxal

    There is reasoning that noun in Instrumental is a complement of the verb "być" and noun in Nominative is a subject.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copula_%28linguistics%29#Slavic

    April 22, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    Well, "he", not "I", but as it was explained to me, think of it as kind of like "He exists in the manner of a man."

    March 6, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Dr.Emmet_Brown

    Seriously what is with this spelling that doesn't sound like the pronunciation. I mean there is no "nung" in mezczyzna. Ugh, I started this course because I'm heavily (American) Polish, but the language seems to make no sense. Doubting the language. Should I keep going?

    April 22, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/timstellmach

    The Polish language was shoehorned into the Latin alphabet, so they devised a lot of spelling rules you won't have ever seen before. But it is very regular. Polish can be fiendish for other reasons, but the spelling is actually going to be one of the lesser problems.

    The "nung" is in the "ę," by the way. The "e" (without an ogonek) would indeed not have that sound (and parenthetically, one of the few irregularities in Polish spelling is that a final "ę" is pronounced like "e").

    April 22, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/immery

    Keep trying for a little. With spelling it should get easier. It is very regular but different from what you are used to.

    Here is a short guide to Polish pronunciation.

    April 22, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jacek.Placek

    Why not "he is the man"?

    November 20, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    Normally we accept both 'a' and 'the', but here... well, I don't see a reason for any native English speaker to say "He is the man" unless it's "He's the man!" as in "This guy rules!"

    November 20, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    What about "He is the man you want to see about your question"?

    November 20, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/timstellmach

    Well, or maybe in context you were talking about a man, and now you're saying that he's that one.

    In any case, if you say "He is the man" in Englsh, the emphasis of "the" is probably on the fact that you're being specific, when lots of people are men. Those are the cases where Polish is more apt to say "On jest ten mężczyzna" (he is that man).

    November 20, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    Okay, I guess it won't hurt to accept "the man". But mostly it will be "He is this/that man" (On jest tym mężczyzną) both in timstellmach's and Rae.F's comments. Anyway, added.

    November 20, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Susan510696

    Hi! Why is different...mężczyzna and mężczyzną? Why the last letter (a - ą) changes? I can't understand...please help me....

    April 30, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    As usual... cases. "mężczyzna" is Nominative, so it's the basic - dictionary - form. "mężczyzną" is Instrumental.

    The main usage of Nominative is as the subject of the sentence, on in a sentence like "X to Y" where both X and Y are in Nominative.

    The main usage for Instrumental is in sentences like "X + a form of 'to be' + Y", where Y is in Instrumental (if it's a noun phrase).

    More information here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/16373167

    April 30, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Susan510696

    Dziękuję bardzo!

    May 1, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/anele418386

    Y it prounonces mężczyzna and says o at the end????

    August 9, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    Ą is like ou sound. Like "o" in "rose" (maybe not that strong).

    August 9, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Tatonka71

    Where is the t sound coming from?

    August 30, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    There isn't any 't' sound here.

    August 30, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/LuboKol

    It confuses me. In Czech (my native language) "jest" is an archaic form of "he is" and "je" is the today's form. And "he is eating" is "jí"

    September 10, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Hasa86

    Like Hast ( is ) in Persian

    September 20, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/ArroweLingo

    Sounds like mezhtuzna. Is it supposed to sound like t mezvTuzna? Is the c pronounced as a t?

    January 10, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    Technically you don't have "c" here. It's a part of "cz". Roughly the first sound in "charm". Often transcribed into English as 'tsch'.

    So... "meushtschyznou", if I were to adapt it to English speakers... only that Polish 'y' doesn't have a good equivalent, I think.

    January 10, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/hannah832829

    that one i triped up on

    January 24, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/langkuoch1

    Hey guys! I was going to read up an article on the Instrumental case (which, after learning Romance languages for so long is a completely foreign concept to me) but is there anyone here who could explain it instead? Thanks!!

    July 27, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    In general, you can think of the instrumental case as marking the instrument that was used to do a thing. "I hit the ball with the bat." If English had the instrumental case, "the bat" would be marked that way.

    Usually, anything that comes after a copula like "to be" is in the nominative, so Polish is slightly unusual in its use of the instrumental case in this context. The way it was explained to me, think of it as "He does his be-ing in the manner of a man." That's not really the best way to convey the instrumental case, but it's the closest we can come in English and still have it make any kind of sense. Perhaps "He exists with manhood" or "He exists by means of manhood".

    But that kind of stretches English-language sensibilities, so you just need to remember that Polish uses the instrumental case after "to be" and "to become".

    Now go read some articles on the topic! :)

    July 27, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/e28144

    I could be saying it wrong but ive been pronouncing this like "jiff-jan-ikka"

    January 15, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

    I'd transcribe it as "jiev-chyn-ka". At least lose the 'i' in the last part, that could make the word unrecognizable.

    January 15, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/ashbie0607

    Does anyone have a link that can explain the instrumental case to me that is not wikipiedia or a wikibook? (I'm sorry if i spelled those two things wrong, I don't normaly spell them because I dont trust them)

    July 22, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/mihxal

    What about Wiktionary? They are created by volunteers but it doesn't mean that they aren't valuable and informative. There are strict requirements and indications for creating articles so that they are as good as possible. And if it is possible, they should be based on other sources and contain references. Entries are usually created by several different persons who review each other. It is not always easy to establish a single version so there may be some editorial clashes but after all, I don't think that there is a better site that contains compilation of various different sources describing how some concepts or events are viewed from different perspectives. Of course, there may appear some errors but where they don't appear? Also, if you see some mistake, you can always fix it.

    Here you have some links: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/23557369:

    July 24, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/tobiasasma

    Uno i find the woman's voice kinda hot dont you think

    July 3, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/AlyssaEM2018

    I only got it wrong cos my finger didnt press it properly

    November 19, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/wairanmax

    Explanation: you don't say 'it's I' you say 'it's ME' instead

    July 13, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
    • 1886

    This is true, but how is that relevant here?

    July 13, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/wairanmax

    I dunno, just a way to understand cases

    July 15, 2017
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