1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Polish
  4. >
  5. "Kobieta mówi po polsku."

"Kobieta mówi po polsku."

Translation:The woman speaks Polish.

December 11, 2015

44 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rbertj

I am Slovak (south neighbor of Poles with same language roots) and for me it is absolutely unnatural to put there an indefinite article. We don't have anything like that. The only similar situation is "some woman", but no "a woman". In other languages I don't have so big problem with this, but here... Even for the fifth try, i have wrote "woman speaks polish". I am damned.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Essex_Keith

I'm English and learning to get used to not using them. It's quite hard when you're used to them. 'Woman speaks Polish,' really doesn't work in English unfortunately - unless it's a news headline. At least you're not learning via French - they love all kinds of articles, everywhere. :-


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AxelleLPS

Why french ? (I am french)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eddlake

I learnt mandarin before so no articles isn't to hard to get used to.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dont_tread_on_me

Funny thing, that im Hungarian, so we use articles, a lot. But when I learn Slavic languages, I hate and forget to use these articles in the translations, so I struggle, with the same problem as you :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EvaPtakov1

Rest assured, that "the" has no place being required in the translation, thus is a mistake


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Well, it's either "The" or "A", but an article is required.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EvaPtakov1

It's required in English but that's not the language we're trying to learn here. It's important to try to step out of the framework of the language you're learning from in order to fully grasp the nuances of the new language. "Kobieta mówi po polsku" doesn't mean a concrete woman, nor some random woman because Polish doesn't require that to be specified. And you can't explain that meaning with a grammatically correct English sentence I'm afraid.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

I am puzzled why someone who writes in perfect English tries to defend a completely wrong English answer. This is a language learning website, and regardless of the language we're trying to learn here (and please take into consideration all the Polish people taking this course as a 'reverse tree', which is a common thing on Duolingo), we cannot accept an answer that is simply wrong. Please just imagine the laughter in social media if someone decides to post a screenshot of the biggest language-learning app accepting nonsense in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EvaPtakov1

You have a good point there that the responses should be grammatically correct, that's fair. But I still have a problem with this because even if the sentence "The woman speaks/is speaking Polish" is grammatically correct, it definitely is not the correct translation for "Kobieta mówi po polsku". "The" in English indicates a concrete subject that was mentioned prior to this sentence. The Polish sentence does not carry the same meaning. In a lot of cases throughout Slavic languages "the" and "this" would have the same translation. If you want to be accurate here, only "A woman speaks/is speaking Polish" should be accepted as the correct answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alik1989

Sorry, but this is absurd. Translations are not bijective functions, where A has to correspond only to B, and C corresponds only to D and vice versa. Polish does have definiteness. It's not a grammatical category, but it's implied by context. Kobieta mówi po polsku can be translated either as The woman... or A woman..., depending on what came before this sentence. And now you want to make up new rules for English so that there is just one possible translation. Why?

And why not spin this further? Mówiłam... can't be translated directly into English, since English doesn't specify the gender. Should we now only allow "I, as a woman, spoke..." as a translation, even though no one ever speaks like that?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EvaPtakov1

of course, depending on the context that comes before the sentence. IF there is context. There is not context here, the sentence stands on its own. This doesn't teach people who are learning English the correct usage of definite and indefinite articles.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FiskeFinne

Yeah, Duolingo really forces you to learn English grammar and spelling. This is more of a translation site than a speaking site. You don't really learn to speak languages, you learn to translate sentences correctly between languages. (Which of course helps on learning to speak the language too)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iscmn

You can see some grammatical information at each lesson(doesn't connected with the context of lesson) which is fine. I wish there were also(on phones).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SaxyLady

I take it "po" is required when mentioning a language? I recall something similar in Russian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dont_tread_on_me

Po is like English -ly. For example happiLY or suddenLY. So in English Kobieta mówi po Polsku would sound somehow like The/A woman speaks Polishly. It sounds a little bit sily, but thats how this language works haha.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spicy_wolf

yes, it would be "po-polski/по-польски" in Russian, but "pols'koyu/польською" in Ukrainian, for example.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LivingLifeform

I Thought that the polish word for polish was Polski,


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

Words change endings for different cases. Click on the Polish declension of polski: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/polski#Polish

"po polsku" = "in Polish" or "in the Polish language" https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/po_polsku


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IKEA.OFFICIAL

It's in the accusative case right? Because she speak "Polish" "Polish" is the noun that the verb being done to, so it changed for the accusative case right? I'm just trying to get a grasp on cases and it's confusing me.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Actually when thinking about cases, you can disregard "po polsku". "polsku" is an old Dative form, which is nowadays only used in this construction. So you can just treat "po polsku" as a whole, an unusual adverb, in a way. I think technically it's an 'adverbial phrase'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JollyRoger00

Why it can't be translated to "She speaks Polish"? I'm Brazillian and we don't use articles + substantives where you can just use a pronoun....

(Kidding.... I know Ona is the word for She... but I still hate the fact my brain is programmed to always use pronouns anywhere it can be used. ;--;)

Anywayz... what the hell is "Po"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dori_The_Great

Word po means literally "after" but has also lots of other meanings like english "on" or "for"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Emma30293

So is mówi or po speak?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

"mówi" = "speaks". "po" is a part of the "po polsku" phrase which means "in Polish".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bielen2k

Knows Polish = zna język polski Speak Polish = mówi po polsku


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BaciLacsi

"The woman speaking polish" is incorrect?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

It's not a full sentence, it's just a noun phrase.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/t.er.e.za

what is the difference between "kobieta" and "kobietą"???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

"kobieta" is the basic, Nominative form, used mostly for the subject of the sentence, like here.

"kobietą" is the Instrumental form, used mostly after the preposition "z" = "with" and in sentences like "Ona jest kobietą" (She is a woman).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MihailErsh

Россия. Mowić - это говорить. А мне пишет, что правильный вариант: a woman knows polish


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

"A woman knows Polish" - это только один из вариантов. Да, это "Женщина знает польский", но на практике эти варианты значат почти то же самое...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DamianFrew1

The Polish sentence is fine but the English translation does not make sense.

You can't say "A woman speaks Polish" without further context. It should say "THE woman speaks Polish" for it to make sense as a stand alone sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Well, all sentences here are taken out of any context. But okay, I made "the" the only starred answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/poli110

No sound for this single question. Can not answer. Otherwise sound ok.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/veronika84834

I typed the women spewks polish why did it say i was wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

"The women" is plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/laurazbroj

It said that i forgot the word (the) but there was no (the)!!!!!!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Well, as "The woman..." is the main English translation, "the" really must have been there, otherwise it would be a huge, so far unknown bug.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Raj1313

it can be the speaks polish also or???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

I'm sorry, but I don't understand...

Learn Polish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.