"Kaczki to zwierzęta."

Translation:Ducks are animals.

December 20, 2015

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I don't understand why it's "Kaczki to." Why isn't is "Kaczki sa?"


You can say 'Kaczki są zwierzętami.'


We can say: ,,Kaczki to zwierzęta" -zwierzęta is Nominative Or ,,Kaczki są zwierzętami" - zwierzętami is Instrumental Both are correct


"To" means "are" and "this" based on context, then?


basically yes. you can look at it like that.


Other than colloquially are there any more distinctions between using "to" and "być"? "To" is not a verb, so it's difficult for English speakers to understand just how it is used here. The case is not accusative so it is like the whole phrase "kaczka to ptak" is the subject in the sentence. Also if the word "zwierze" does not include birds it has a different meaning than "animal".


As a hungarian I totally understand the use of 'to' here. We have a similar structure. Thank you for the explanation.


Is "zwierzęta" accusative? I don't understand exactly when i have to use the instrumental case(apart from the verb "byc")


"zwierzęta" is nominative here, you have to use instrumental after "być" (ex: Kaczki są zwierzętami) and nominative after "to" (ex: Kaczki to zwierzęta).


However "to jest X" or "to są Y" will produce the nominative too, so not every use of "być" produces instrumental.


What I've learned is the difference between using "to" and "być (jestem, jesteś...)" is that "to" is used more colloquially and informally.


Why not "Kaczki są zwierzęta"?


a fascinating discovery :0


I think Ducks, those are animals should be accepted, as it is a more direct translation, even though it sounds odd.


I don't think it's a more direct translation. It's like: Kaczki... to są zwierzęta... The sentence here is very simple, X are Y.


Isn't animals - zwierząt ?


Thanks, google translate tricked me


Which shows that it isn't really a reliable translator. It's good to show you the general meaning of some text, but it won't necessarily use correct grammar.


I agree. Why not kaczki SA zwierzeta? I suppose in English "ducks, this animal" has a similar meaning but sounds odd. If we write "kaczki sa zwierzeta" is this technically wrong? If so, then in conjugation tables for bytch (to be)why is there no to but sa for third person plural?


"to" has many meanings. In this sentence, it functions as the copula (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copula_(linguistics)). Even though it's not a verb, in here it means "is/are".

"to be" in Polish is "być", not "bytch" ;) "to" isn't any form of "to be", as mentioned before. You may think of it (it's a simplification of course) as something similar to an "=" sign. "Ducks = animals". That's why it wouldn't work in "Ducks are big", because "Ducks = big" makes no sense. "Ducks = big animals" would be okay.

Yes, you can use "są", but the construction with "są" (or any other form of the verb "być") needs the following noun/noun phrase to take Instrumental case. That makes it "Kaczki są zwierzętami".


Thanks for your reply. Yes, kazci to zwierzeta seems a very odd sentence without a verb. (I prefer your kaczki sa zwierzetami) and thanks for reminding me how byc is spelt.


My answer was correct! Ducks are animals

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