1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Polish
  4. >
  5. "I am drinking this tea."

"I am drinking this tea."

Translation:Piję tę herbatę.

December 15, 2015



If all natives make the 'tę -tą' mistakes then surely this is the new way polish is spoken officially and should be taught to non natives, same as not pronouncing the 'ę' at the end of words? I mean PROPER proper standardised English supposed to sound the 'k' in 'knife' but NO ONE bar a few dialects in Scots English would pronounce it as such and certainly not teach it to a non native as that would be cruel. If I use 'tę', every single pole I speak to corrects me 'tą, Ashu tą" I feel like I'm learning some an archaic version of polish if I voice 'tę'. Any advice?


Yes, you can tell them that they're wrong. Not "all natives" make this mistake. No linguist will call it more than 'acceptable in speech'. Accusative is tę. Instrumental is tą.


This is not a case of "most Poles always say it like that", but a case of " some Poles often make this mistake". It is considered acceptable in colloquial speech.

are you sure you don't mix cases? tę herbatę, tą herbatą. Or maybe it is a regional thing, and people in place you live are more used to "tą" as accusative.

It is like saying "ain't" is now correct form.


I see that makes perfect sense. They're all from Łódź but if it's anything like our word "ain't" I'm guessing maybe class and education come into if people do or do not use "tą" in accusative?


I don't want to insult anyone, but logically, people that are not that well educated are more likely to make some language mistakes. This one's really quite okay in speech, but we teach the really correct language, not the quite okay language.


The problem with language is that it's used to communicate. People don't serve the language, is the other way around. For example in Spanish you see the Royal academy change things to accommodate the changes in language. How often does a mistake considered one until it becomes part is the language? Another example, since you were thinking about offending people, who would understand Canterbury Tales if you read it in the original? Do you remember it? How Janet Peole that went though it on school remember it? Language is a tool, if someone else didn't understand tą from tę then it makes sense to adapt. But when they're used to the phonemic flow, just do it.


The school and university are supposed to teach the normative language. When what is spoken by lots of people will be accepted as a norm, then it will be taught. In other languages there are also some typical mistakes made by native speakers, and that doesn't mean that are not mistakes any more.


My wife is polish, she is from opole, and she told me that ta (a with a tail) IS indeed gramatically correct, she said that you can use either one.. in fact she learned the ta (a with a tail) way in school, she went to school in the 1980's. If children are learning it that way in poland at school then im sorry but to say that it is the wrong way when we are trying to learn a language is confusing, my wife was quite miffed when i told her. She was also offended by Jellei's comment about people who aren't that well educated, she is very well educated as are all of her family and friends, and they use the ta (with a tail) way in everday speech, it is not just acceptable it is grammatically correct!!


As I wrote, I didn't want to offend anyone. And it's not like educated people make no mistakes.

Anyway, no - I don't believe I've seen any linguist call "tą" a grammatically correct Accusative version. It's "acceptable in speech".




I can see how one could argue that it's common enough to be accepted. I wouldn't bat an eye if you said it. But this is a language course, a course based on writing the exact answers. We don't want a situation when someone corrects our learners' grammar, grammar that we taught in this course.


Polish schools must have it wrong then, because upon speaking to my wifes nephew he also got taught the 'wrong' way, if something is accepted enough to be taught in Polish schools since the 1980's then surely us learners would not be corrected while speaking to Polish natives?oh well.. so much for the Polish education system i guess.. ;) she also said that I would be corrected most of the time saying it the 'correct' way, I will however try it both ways next time i'm in poland in the summer, will post my results here :D


Piję tę herbatę ale piję tamtą herbatę??? Or am i wrong?


You are right, the ending does indeed change between "tę" and "tamtą".


Why? This is really confusing. I guess because tę is considered a pronoun and tamtą an adjective?


No no no... and tamtą are both demonstrative pronouns. Most other pronouns, like possessive swoją also have the accusative -ą ending. So that can't be it.

Many centuries ago all accusative endings of pronouns used to be -ę (moję, twoję, swoję, tamtę...) with being the only expection. In modern Polish those endings changed, with being a remnant of the old times.

EDIT: I meant feminine pronouns, of course


hahaha, alrighty. I can literally see you covering your face with your hands ;-)

So, in order to get it right: Normally a pronoun takes the same ending as an adjective. Correct?


If forgot to mention that we are talking about feminine pronouns and feminine adjectives, only. Then it's as you said, with being the only expection. As discussed previously, using instead of is ok in colloquial speech, but unacceptable in any form of writing (expect for informal chats on the internet, perhabs).


I po angielsku to ja po polsku


Why is: "Mam tamta herbatę" correct, while "Piję ta herbatę" is not? The latter feels off, because it should be "tę herbatę" since it's in accusative. But why is "Mam tamta herbatę" NOT in accusative? Why is it in instrumental? I HAVE that tea, it's an action on the tea, it should be in accusative.


The accusative of ta is and the accusative of tamta is tamtą. Your answer was correct because the grading system doesn't mark you down for not using diacritics, so it basically treats "a" and "ą" as the same letter, which they aren't, of course.


Thanks for the clarification!


Is the fact (?) that ‘te’ is, in the accusative case, ‘tę’ and not ‘tą’ a syntactic/grammatical aberration? (No need to repeat or rehash the prior debates, I’ve read through them; my question concerns usage in modern standard Polish, not colloquial usage and/or regional dialects.)


I'd say it's gradually leaving the 'colloquial' area and becoming more common and acceptable in general speech. But it still looks wrong when written down, at least to me.

Regarding the 'aberration': The -ę ending used to be the standard accusative declension of all feminine pronouns in the past, but almost all of those endings got gradually replaced by -ą (in some older Bible translations you can still find words like swoję, which don't exist in modern Polish). So, tę, is sort of the last remnant of the old inflectional paradigm.


I understand that "Piję tę herbatę" rolls off the tongue better, but "tą herbatę" is grammatically correct!


Tą herbatę isn't correct. It is just acceptable in colloquial language - only because a lot of Polish speakers make this error often.


But in this sentence, ta is considered as an adjective, right? If it was for example warm tea, it would be cieplą herbatę, wouldn't it?


It would be "ciepłą" but "ta" is a demonstrative pronoun. It is a matter of different cases. "I spend this evening with this (beautiful) girl" is "Spędziłem wieczór z tą (piękną) dziewczyną", while "I see this (beautiful) girl" is "Widzę tę (piękną) dziewczynę".

  • 2153

Another exception ;)

But don't give up, even natives often make mistakes here.


And why is it piję instead of pijem


"pijem" is not a word.

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