"Duzi chłopcy nie noszą skarpet."

Translation:The big boys do not wear socks.

December 16, 2015

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What do each of the cases mean? What are their explanations?


In Polish we have 7 cases. I'll try to explain them using word "kot" (a cat).

  • "Mianownik" (Nominative) - Main case, used when we are naming something. "Jego kot jest czarny" - His cat is black. "Koty liżą masło" - Cats lick butter.

  • "Dopełniacz" (Genitive) - Case with really wide usage. 1) Describing possesion, 2) Using negations, 3) With some verbs. "To zabawka jej kota" - This is her cat's toy. "To nie jest wina kotów" - That's not cats fault.

  • "Celownik" (Dative) - Case used when describing aim of the activity, or for indirect objects. "Daję jeść kotu" - I'm feeding a cat. "Pomagamy kotom" - We are helping cats.

  • "Biernik" (Accusative) - Case used for direct objects. "Znalazłem kota" - I found a cat. "Widzę koty" - I see cats.

  • "Narzędnik" (Instrumental) - If something is an instrument of an activity, way which led for result, you should use that case. "Idę z kotem do weterynarza" - I'm going to the vet with my cat. "Psy nie lubią się z kotami" - Dogs and cats don't like each other.

  • "Miejscownik" (Locative) - Always with preposition. Used for describing location of an action, or when you are thinking about something. "Myślę o kocie" - I'm thinking about a cat. "Anioły żyją w kotach" - Angels are living in cats.

  • "Wołacz" (Vocative) - Very rare case. Used only for calling something. "O kocie, czemu to zrobiłeś" - Oh cat, why have you done that. "O wielkie koty" - Oh grand cats.


To all you so-and-sos out there, please don't down-vote for the fun of it. Duolingo is for people who want to create a better learning environment than that. Let's give 4d1n some lingots.


Very helpful. Thanks. Just one thing, should the example "psy nie lubia sie z kotami translate as "dogs do not like cats".


It's closer to, Dogs and cats don't like each other. It's literally dogs don't like themselves [together] with cats, but that's broken English.


This blows my mind, but even understanding the concepts makes it easier to make educated guesses. Thank you.

[deactivated user]

    So, if they wear socks: "skarpety" (acc, pl), and if they don't: "skarpet" (gen, pl). And the nom sg is "skarpeta". Am I right?


    "skarpet" is genitive case, right?

    • 1046

    Genitive plural. Which for nouns ending in -a (like skarpeta) usually has no ending.


    Right, in Polish "dopełniacz". Often mistaken with accusative ("biernik"), because it have similar questions (genitive: "kogo? czego? [nie ma]" - who? what? [is absent], accusative "kogo? co? [widzę]" - who? what? [I see])


    4d1n, Your explanation above is better than my text book. Can you expand this 'Kto? Co?' for the cases please.


    Mianownik (Nominative): kto? co? (to jest)

    Dopełniacz (Genitive): kogo? czego? (nie ma)

    Celownik (Dative): komu? czemu? (przyglądam się)

    Biernik (Accusative): kogo? co? (widzę)

    Narzędnik (Instrumental): z kim? z czym? (rozmawiam)

    Miejscownik (Locative): o kim? o czym? (mówię)

    Wołacz (Vocative): o!

    • 224

    This is something I've wondered about for a while: this sentence could be translated as "the big boys are not wearing socks". The two English sentences have different meanings. How, in Polish, is that difference expressed?


    There is no difference in sentence structure in Polish for this. The listener ascertains the meaning of the speaker from the context of the conversation. For example, in English, you wouldn't say "Right now, I don't wear socks." You'd say "Right now, I'm not wearing socks." In Polish the "right now" is the context that determines your meaning.


    "The big boys do not wear carpets."


    So,it's a genetive pl because of the negative, as François asked,right?


    Almost. The fact that it's negative is not enough to 'cause' Genitive. It's because the affirmative sentence took Accusative, that the negation causes Genitive.

    Other cases just stay the same when negated.


    I didn't know that. Thank you for that! Interesting!

    [deactivated user]

      The large boys wear no socks

      Care to explain the difference_


      "large boys" usually implies the size of the boys. "Big boys" often refers to age primarily with size following secondarily. Big boys are usually like age 10-preteen. Little boys are ages 4-9 maybe?


      Why not skarpety?


      It's Genitive.

      "nosić" (to wear) takes Accusative, but when a verb that took Accusative gets negated, it takes Genitive instead. This is the only case which changes when negated, other ones just stay the same.

      However, one user recently pointed to me that the Clothing section suddenly uses Genitive which wasn't exactly introduced before, and there's a "Negations" skill afterwards - so this sentence probably shouldn't be here. Removed.

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