"Czy to jego ryba?"

Translation:Is it his fish?

December 18, 2015

This discussion is locked.


Do "jego" and "jej" decline like the rest of the possessives? i.e. Should this/Would this ever be "Czy to jega ryba?"?


I hate seeing honest questions downgraded. I mean, who does that?? And why? There seems to be a lot of that in this Polish module for some reason. I upgraded your question so it wouldn't be negative. :-)


No, "jego" and "jej" are independent of the object – it's always "jej/jego".


Just like "ich" for "theirs" :)


Oh i'm sorry, is this your fish? I thought it was mine. The tag fell off.


It would be of great help to me if the "revealed" translation available when you click on the word was not just a simple meaning ("fish" of "it") but also told us what case it was. This little bit of extra information would help in figuring out the rules since there are no lists in Duolingo of these forms.


Unfortunately Duo wants us not to put grammar notes in the hints, because they appear as words as puzzles (so you would get "Nominative" as a puzzle in the application). I hope they will finally fix it so we could provide those notes.

They are provided in some places, still, although they technically shouldn't.

Anyway, "ryba" is singular and Nominative.


Tanks for responding, Jellei. I'm afraid I do not understand or agree with their reasoning as it would seem the goal would be to help us learn the language (and a difficult laguage it is too, at least for me) as best we can.


So is "go" for inanimate objects and "jego" for animate ones?


Actually, those are two forms of the same word. „Jego” is the accentuated form that you can put at the start of the sentence. Otherwise „go” is more common.


I thought "jego" meant his and "go" meant him


You are correct that "jego" is a possessive adjective meaning "his" (as it is used in this sentence). But also, "jego"/"go" are two forms of the same personal pronoun, which is both genitive and accusative for "on" ("him").


Genitive and accusative are the same for this word.


Literally this means "the fish of him" and jego is the genitive form of 3PS masc. PRONOUN not POSSESSIVE

The usage here is different from "moja, twoje, nasz, wasze" etc.

....As far as I can work out from other sources


what do you mean? It is a normal polish possessive pronoun. it means his. It also has the same form as one of three genitive forms of "on"- jego/go/niego . And it does not change with declination.

genitive forms of nouns follow nouns they describe, possessive pronouns precede nouns they describe.


If "jego" were a true possessive surely it would decline by gender, as NJG88 asked above?

It doesn't: "jego pies, jego kobieta i jego dziecko w domu"

Also by case, But it doesn't:

Kocha jego kobietę. Nie kocham jego kobiety

Which leads me to believe its the genitive form of the pronoun... literally "of him".

Anyway, whether you think of it as a possessive pronoun (or possessive adjective, as that's really how were using the other ones in the list above here) that doesn't decline, OR as the genitive form of the pronoun, it doesn't really matter. The effect is the same.


One thing that you might not be aware is that in Polish there aren't two forms for possesion like English "his" and "of him". „Jego” can be interpreted as either, and so does any other possesive pronoun. Third person possesive pronouns are special in that they don't change with the gender of the objects, but other than that there is nothing special in them, even in the literal meaning.


Ok, so accepting both your points then, what is the difference in usage between "jego" meaning "his" and "jego" meaning "of him".

Someone above said the genitive form has to come after the verb?


Ona lubi jego ryba (possessive pronoun/adjective - whatever you want to call it)

Ona lubi ryba jego (3rd person sing. masc. gen. pronoun)

is that correct?

If word placement doesn't matter, then I revert to my argument that the two things are the same. But its all academic anyhow... :)


Ok guys, I concede defeat :)

Nothing like a good debate though to help one with learning grammar. Checking facts and sources motivated by a desire to prove a point lol. I've learned a lot from this thanks.

The major thing I was missing is "why else do the genitive forms of the pronouns exist, if not to express ownership?"... what I hadn't considered, and you guys made me think about, was .... the answer is they are there for all the other times the genitive case is needed WITHOUT expressing possession, e.g. object of a negative transitive; complement of certain prepositions etc. etc.

IE all the things that an English speaker never thinks about because we only associate the genetive case with possession :)

Thanks for your patience and explanations.


there is no difference, you can complicate things for yourself if you want, "ryba jego" is still his fish, just in weird order, (Yoda or Bible).

I tried to point out the difference between nouns in genitive and possessive pronouns:

  • we never use mnie/cię/ciebie/was/nas instead possessive pronouns

  • we never use go/niego/niej/nich instead of jego/jej as possessive pronouns

  • we put nouns in genitive after nouns they describe ( zeszyt Kasi), and possesive pronouns before them (mój zeszyt)


Just before we start: it should be „rybę”. Because the object of „lubić” takes accusative.

The difference here is that the first variant feels much, much more natural. The second one has the same basic meaning, but sounds incredibly off, even in poetry it would be risky. to use.

The basic function of word order in Polish is to accentuate certain parts of speech, while maintaining the same logical meaning (which is possible thanks to complex inflection), but it also means that certain combinations doesn't sound right.

To give an example of genitive „on” that is not a possesive, let's look at „nie lubię go” or slightly differently accentuated „jego nie lubię”. Yes, it's identical to the possesive pronoun. Yes, the two forms differ from each other in first and second persons. It's a specific quirk of the third person.

If thinking about them as third person genitive pronoun helps you learning, then go for it. But I treat "jego/jej" as a normal possesive pronouns that simply behaves in a slightly different way.


how does ryb become ryba in this sentence?


It's the other way round. "ryba" is the basic, Nominative form (one fish). "ryb" is Genitive plural (There are no fish here)


So is "jego" possessive like "jej" is?


Yes. It's derived from the genitive of "he", literally meaning "of him", but it functions as a possessive pronoun.


Thanks Alik. Every time I get to a new lesson, everything I thought I knew goes straight out the window. 31 days today though and still just as motivated to continue learning :)


Im confused because I answered is this his fish and i was marked wrong. How can I tell when 'to' is meant to be this or it?


Never mind i just had a typo.... Sorry!

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