"The man"


December 16, 2015



This, for some reason, is the only word I'm struggling with so far. Any tips on remembering this one?

December 16, 2015


I'm not sure if it helps you in any way, but let's try. You can divide this word into three parts: męż-czy-zna

  • męż looks like the adjective mężny which means brave. A man should be very brave, huh?

  • czy is the word that is used to form question you can answer with yes/no. Czy jesteś kobietą = Are you a woman?, Czy masz 19 lat? = Are you 19?

  • zna - it's the verb znać (to know) in 3rd person singular. Czy on mnie zna? = Does he know me?

So you have męż(ny)=brave, czy used to indicate a question and zna=(he/she/it) knows. If you think about it, you can create a sentence: brave(ry) - does he know (it) = męż-czy-zna.

I hope this helps. :)

December 16, 2015


I think reading this explanation actually helped me more than the resulting mnemonic. :)

April 21, 2016


Incredibly helpful! Dziękuję!

April 8, 2018


this is brilliant!

November 13, 2016


Your explanation is worthy of an Oscar

April 18, 2018


The shorter "mąż" (plural: "mężowie") means "husband" - maybe this will help somehow (both words have a common etymological origin).

December 16, 2015


I spell it how i hear it : mesh tez nah or something close. Maybe think of a man holding a mesh sheet with postits saying tez and nah.

March 24, 2016


"mewsh-chez-nah" would be more accurate

May 26, 2018


actually as a native speaker its pronounced as MEN-SHCH-IZNA but put the polish sz cz sounds over the English sh and ch. Make the I sound like in the name ol(i)via.

August 26, 2018


How do you write the special characters?

January 17, 2016


If on Android, you can get the SwiftKey Keyboard. If you long press each letter, the various accents show up. Furthermore, I believe you can add the Polish dictionary, and then you can use autocorrect! I do this with French and Portuguese, and it helps IMMENSELY!

January 26, 2016


One possibility is to change the keyboard layout. In Windows: go to Settings, select Time language, then Region language, and then Add language. Find "Polish" on the list and add it.

Now, to switch between your default keyboard layout and the Polish keyboard layout you click [Windows]+[space] or [Alt]+[Shift] (you can also use an icon with a keyboard or the letters ENG/POL/etc. on the taskbar). To write the special character type [normal character]+[right At] (or [normal character]+[Ctrl]+[Alt]), e.g. [a]+[right Alt] gives "ą" and so on (the only nonobvious thing is that in order to produce "ź" you have to click [x]+[right Alt] (because [z]+[right Alt] produces "ż")).

January 17, 2016


What's the difference between "ę" and "e", and "ż" and "z"... Is that a kind of accent? Or it just sounds like words in Spanish like "á, é, í, ó and ú"?

Some link to get a better explanation, please.

April 26, 2016


The accents change the pitch and sound slightly of the letter. so to break it down, in polish you have few of these break downs from one letter that change its sound. Starting from: A= in this language you need to forget the way you would pronounce these letters . so A will not be sounding like ey. It will have the sound a. Like (a)pple.Similar to the French A sound.

From a stems the sound ą. This has a sounds like the word bonjour in French. but take the part that is b(on)jour. It has a on, ong sound but the g is silent kind of.

Then you have the letter C which breaks down into other sounds. C sounds like the c in the word (c)eramic.

Then breaks off to ć. This has a sound that still carries the c original sounds but is little twisted, sounding like cheek. So the sound u use is (chee)k. CHI.

Then you have the E sounds. Th E is not a ee sound but an eh. Like the word espaniol. Eh-.

This letter breaks off to the ę u mention. This one carries the e sound but also twists to eng but the g is not heard. Or more clearly try saying (ewn)g. This sound will take a little practise and may mislead to you to think a word is spelt with en when it really has the special e.

Then you have the z family. This one may be the most difficult to see the difference in however its possible but it depends on your tongue and mouth shape. The normal Z has z like zebra but English pronunciation not American. This stems to the ż ź and rz. These three sounds extremely similar especially the rz and ż. The ż has the heaviest sound of z being like a word like SHap with no accent. say it as if you don't know how to pronounce it in a English accent yet. A clear SH UP. Your teeth should be touching and tongue touching the top of your mouth inside. For example the polish word żaba , which is frog. Google translate should give a good example.

Then the rz is less heavy and has softer version of the previous z described. so try the word rzeczy which means things or stuff in polish. The difference is small but u can spot it.

finally the ź which is high pitched and most different. This one has a sounds similar to (zee)bra but with the polish accent on the sound. Try a word which is a surname like źaja.

They r hard to explain and there is more but if u put the word I used on google translate then u will hear the differences.

August 26, 2018


these dots and commas totally change the spelling of a letter actually ę sounds like english "ehw" ż sounds like french "j" ó/u (same sound) sound like english "oo"

May 26, 2018


Wow. I wonder how kids in Poland reacted to seeing this word for the first time...

May 6, 2016


I see this word normal, so kids in Poland see this word normal. :) And of course I am from Poland.

November 20, 2016


Im from poland chez

March 30, 2018


they may have problems writing it down

May 26, 2018


Im rubish at polish

March 12, 2016


Its a hard language mate

April 6, 2016


Ich glaube ich lass den kurs

December 29, 2016


Huh crazy words ! The german Gaswasserinstallateur was easier to remember...

April 17, 2017


Thanks. Im struggling with the memorization as well so these tips help.

December 22, 2015



February 5, 2016


Does anyone know how exactly is the "y" used in polish? It kind of confuses me.

August 24, 2016


It's a vovel.

Duo's tips and notes compare it to e in roses, and this website compares it to y in syllable.

August 24, 2016


^ accurate

May 26, 2018


Thats hard

November 20, 2016


Hey, I am Marie ( Ich bein Marie) from Poland, but because I was adopted by German parents, I speak no polish only German. So far, I have been doing great, but I am getting mixed up with "the" and "the man". Any tips for me in the future? Please reply.

December 23, 2017


I'm afraid that your question is quite confusing, how can we compare "the" and "the man"? Did you perhaps mean "the man" vs "a man"? There's no difference in Polish, unless you interpret "the man" as "this man" and translate it to "ten mężczyzna".

December 26, 2017


Thank you, Baakamono - it helps

January 8, 2016


it's hard spelling this one. This language has words no other country had before...

September 29, 2016


I use android but I can't find this special "e". Could you please help me?

October 4, 2016


You may need to install Polish keyboard.

October 4, 2016


Baakomomo, thank you! This is fabulous! Thanks everyone for all your help!

March 7, 2017


Thanks, Baakamono. Splitting those masses of "z" into syllabes helps a lot! I have been having trouble remembering this word as well!

September 2, 2017


My phone didn't have Polish lung

January 29, 2018


I don't understand when the a doesn't need to be accented

May 4, 2018


There is no 'accent' marked in the Polish alphabet. True, the diacritic over letters like ó, ź, ń etc. is called 'an acute accent', but it doesn't mark where the word is accented because that just doesn't change in Polish.

Anyway, there is no variant of A with an acute accent in Polish, so you must mean Ą (the diacritic is called 'ogonek' even in English). Well, the answer is simple. "mężczyzna" is the basic, Nominative form of the word, this is how it looks in a dictionary. You've seen "mężczyzną", but that is the Instrumental form. It is mostly needed in sentences like "I am a man" = "Ja jestem mężczyzną".

May 5, 2018


Oh dear, Saskia, that's what I'm tempted to do! I shall stick with it for a bit I think. Hope you didn't leave!

March 7, 2017
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