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  5. "Little boys do not like soup…

"Little boys do not like soup."

Translation:Mali chłopcy nie lubią zupy.

December 29, 2015



Why is it Mali chłopcy and not Mały chłopcy?


Because "chłopcy" is plural and the adjective has to match the number class (like in Spanish or German): "mały chłopiec, mali chłopcy" = "small boy, small boys", "mała dziewczynka, małe dziewczynki" = "little girl, little girls".


Oh, right. And referring to "they" I would use "Oni"

Thanks, your explanation helped me notice my mistake!


why zupy and not zupę


With negated verbs you often use the genitive: "Mali chłopcy lubią zupę" (accusative), but "Mali chłopcy nie lubią zupy" (genitive).


You use the genitive case for the object of negated verbs only if the non-negated verb would use the accusative.

So if the non-negative verb puts the object or "complement" into any other case apart from accusative (e.g. locative, dative) then you continue to use that case.


Why is it mali and not małych? I remember reading in the Tips that adjectives and determiners usually use -ego/-ej/-ych, and mały was given as an example.

Is it because "mały" is not the word being negated - lubią is? Although I don't understand that entirely, because I thought the entire sentence had to be in the same case (unless separated by a comma)?


Zupy is the negated direct object, that's why it takes genitive. Mali chłopcy is the subject, so it's nominative virile:



Ha ha ha that is really funny


Why is 'l' used instead of 'ł'?


because it's how all -ły ending changes to masculine personal. ły-> li

last sound of the stem gets softened if possible ex. ki-> cy, ry->rzy, gi-dzy, ży-zi


What is the difference between Mali chłopcy and małe chłopaki?


Gender – „chłopcy” is masculine-personal so connects with „mali”, „chłopaki” is a broken word that I strongly suggest to never use in plural… But for the sake of completeness, it is not-masculine-personal in Nominative and acts like masculine-personal in other cases. Since 'boys' are the subject of the sentence here, so they are in nominative case and therefore „chłopaki” connects with „małe”, which is the not-masculine-personal inflection of the adjective.


Well, then what would you use to say "boys" in plural when they're too old to say "chłopcy"? Of course this word behaves a bit strangely, but it's not such a difficult exception to grasp...

Anyway, "małe chłopaki" sounds weird to me, as if they were literally 'small', miniaturized.


What I would use is immaterial, as I am native, so I don't have any troubles with it – I'm just saying, that nothing terribly bad will happen if a Polish learner will use „chłopcy” in such a situation and while it might not be hard to grasp, remember that there are literary hundreds of other things(including many exceptions) that a learner has to burden his memory with in order to use Polish.
I just think that it would be easier from non-native perspective to not use this word, at least early in their experience with Polish. ;)


So would I be right that Mali chłopcy zupy nie lubią would be equally correct, with a very slight change of emphasis?


Hmmm. Well, it sure is not wrong, but I wouldn't consider it very natural. In my opinion it goes in the direction of "The thing about little boys and soup is that they do not like soup".


"u" in the male voice's "zupy" sounds as if it was a long vowel, while it shouldn't be, since Polish doesn't have long vowels


Yes, true, but I don't know if it's tragic enough to disable the audio exercises.


It's not that tragic ;)

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