I think it's proper grammar to put an indefinite article "a" or "the" before "duck", and "a" before "dog".
e.g. "The duck is not a dog"; "A duck is not a dog".
I'm not sure if "Ducks are not dogs" should be a proper translation, because the nouns in the sentence are singular (even if it conveys the same idea).
Because it makes no sence - it's ungrammatical. After the verb 'być' (to be), one has to use the instrumental case, which in this example is 'psem' ('pies' being the nominative).
Trying to explain it to English speaker... mhmm, imagine a sentence, "Jestem psem" - 'I am a dog'. 'Jestem pies' would sound like 'I be dog', ears begin to bleed.
this example is nonsense.
"i be dog" = "ja być pes."
all you changed was the be-verb. not the case. here's how it works in slavic languages.
czech: Jsem pes. (NOMINATIVE)
russian: я собака (NOMINATIVE)
serbian: Ја сам пас. (NOMINATIVE)
polish: Jestem pesem. (INSTRUMENTAL)
each slavic language has its own case rules and exceptions DETERMINED BY VERBS AND/OR PREPOSITIONS. in this case, the verb "być" demands the instrumental case is used.
when you get better at the language, you can find lists of verbs and their associated cases to practice with. But for now...ya just gotta suck it up.
Great comment! In your Russian example, the present tense verb есть is omitted, but in past or future tense, instrumental can be used: Я был собакой/псом, Я буду собакой/псом. Also, the verb являться is used sometimes in the present tense and does use the instrumental case in the object. Это является собакой/псом.
Yes. Staying with affirmative sentence, you can have:
X to Y (Y in Nominative)
or X jest Y (Y in Instrumental).
Also, when negating an "X to Y" sentence, you put "nie" before the noun. There kinda is a hidden "jest" in such a sentence: "Kaczka to (jest) pies", "Kaczka to nie (jest) pies". Using this 'jest' is not wrong, but rather not very natural.
Kaczka nie jest psem means "A duck is not [in the state of being] a dog," which is correct. If you say Kaczka nie jest pies, it's like saying "Duck no is dog." --broken English. Instrumental case means "in the state of being" when following the verb być: jestem, jesteś, jest, etc.
Depends on the contects :D violin = skrzypce. "Gram na skrzypcach" - I'm playing the violin (locative). "Nie ma skrzypiec" - There's no violin (genitive). "Flet gra ze skrzypcami" - The flute plays with the violin (like on a concerto - instrumental). You can multiply the examples and find a perfect use for each case :)
No, it is not. It is just an example of a sentence to practice Polish instrumental:
nominative case - Mianownik (kto? co?) pies (singular)/psy (plural) instrumental case - Narzędnik (kim? czym?) psem (singular)/psami (plural)
Because it is a very general statement, you can assume that it is as true for
a singular "kaczka" (a duck) as it is for every "kaczka", that is plural: "kaczki"(ducks). The word "kaczka" or "kaczki" is the subject of the sentence, which takes the nominative case, but the second noun psem is in the instrumental
here (it does not refer back to the subject like the predicate nominative does in the English sentence and the Polish one to its right).
Note: plural subject requires this noun be in plural as well, which is: psami:
Kaczka nie jest psem - A duck is not a dog - Kaczka TO nie (jest) pies
Kaczki nie są psami - Ducks are not dogs - Kaczki TO nie (są) psy
The rule : If subject is a masculine word , we must put the instrument -em ending. If it is a feminine work we must put the -ą ending. But if we talk about this case, we are putting -em ending even though we are talking about a feminine word "Kaczka". There is similar situation on this sentence. Ona jest mężczyzną. why it is not mężczyznem ?
The subject doesn't matter anymore, it has been put in the sentence already, and you went further. The only thing that matters is that "pies" itself is masculine. Its Instrumental form will always be "psem", even if you are talking about a female dog. "Lassie jest psem".
Well, firstly, "Ona jest mężczyzną" is wrong, because that means "She is a man". OK, we could start discussing transsexualism here, I don't know if that's something that would be said about a transsexual woman or not, I don't have knowledge on this topic.
Anyway, the word "mężczyzna" is masculine, even if it ends with -a and undergoes declension the way that feminine nouns do. After all, it means "a man". There is no such word as "mężczyznem".
psem is not plural. It's singular, instrumental case. Plural, nominative case is psy. The object after the verb "to be," jest in this case, takes the instrumental case. Here is a link as follows. Once there, go down to "Polish," then click "declension of pies."
Click on the link above, in my post above your post, and once there, click on "declension of pies". There are more noun cases than just nominative and instrumental.
You are over-simplifying. Nominative case is used for the subject of a sentence, but not just that. And psem is in the instrumental case, but it not that simple.
When saying "something is something," using conjugations of the verb być, the object uses the instrumental case.
Doberman jest psem. Dobermany są psami. (Plural)
When instead using the word "to" or the phrase "to jest" (or "to są") the object stays in the nominative case.
Doberman to pies. Doberman to jest pies. Dobermany to psy. Dobermany to są psy. (Plural)