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  5. "To twój personel?"

"To twój personel?"

Translation:Is this your personnel?

December 31, 2015

15 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AngelaC488603

To add to the singular vs plural use of staff - this sentence is more likely to be understood by an English speaker as something said to a wizard/shepherd - 'is this your staff?'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/obado

This sentence is wrong in English


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Okay. Could you elaborate on the 'why', and how would you correct it?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/obado

Because the English "staff" refers to a group of workers, not one worker. "The staff are helpful", etc. The singular would be something like "member of staff", "worker" or "employee".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Okay, I understand. And I'm happy to tell you that 'personel' also refers to a group of workers :) Even if it's singular, that's still for a group. (the word 'group' itself is singular in Polish)

I guess you could say "członek personelu" to denote "member of the staff", but "pracownik" (worker, employee) would sound a lot more natural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/obado

I understand - thank you. By the way, in modern spoken English, groups seem to float between being singular and plural, so you can say "England is out of the competition" but more commonly, "England are out of the competition", even though that would have been considered wrong a few decades ago.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mikesjg

I always hear this as "England is out of the competition = The team that is England is out of the competition" and "England are out of the competition = the people of England as a nation collectively are out of the competition" but you're right I hear them both equally and i don't think I've ever heard "England has/have won the competition"!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Malcolm795744

Staff is a collective singular noun, as is for example, a "herd" of cows. It is incorrect, strictly, to say "the staff are.helpful". But people often treat "the staff" as if it was a plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/obado

I would argue that it used to be incorrect to say "the staff are helpful", but it is now the normal usage, so you would have to be very pedantic to say it is incorrect


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

Aren't such things a matter of American vs British English?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Weylin366674

Staff is a singular noun and when we use it with a singular verb, that's grammatical agreement, but it's also "correct" to use notional agreement with a plural verb. This is the case with many collective nouns. British English uses notional agreement more than American English.

The following dictionary entry shows examples with grammatical and notional agreement.

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/staff

"A number of people doesn’t understand notional agreement" ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/icha1221

Why "is this your employee" is wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jellei

It would be very strange in my opinion to use "personel" about a single person. I can't be sure it's completely wrong, but it's surely strange.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/icha1221

I just have to memorize it I guess, since I am not an english native either, Thanks for the reply btw

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