"Jacy są jego rodzice?"

Translation:What are his parents like?

January 4, 2016

This discussion is locked.


Could anyone explain this sentence a bit, with my current knowledge I don't understand how it translates, I just said "What are his parents". I guess it is to do with 'jacy'?

  • 1049

"Jaki" asks for an adjective. To ask for an adjective in English, you usually use "what" at the start and "like" at the end.

His parents are <nice>. → What are his parents like?

"Jacy" is masculine personal nominative plural form of "jaki", formed according to the rules of adjective declension.


Thank you for this explanation, jaki Vs co makes sens to me now!


"how are his parents" i think would mean the same. what do you think ?


Only if it wasn't about people. Asking “How is the film?” is the same as asking “What is the film like?”, and I imagine both would translate to „Jak jest film?”.

But since the sentence is about people, “How are his parents?” means asking about how their life is going or how they are feeling lately, the same as “How are his parents doing?” or “How are his parents feeling?”

That said, “How are his parents?” could mean asking what they're like, if the surrounding context made that clear. So it's not ungrammatical, just unable to have that meaning when standing on its own.


Learning English and Polish at the same time.


So "How are his parents like" is invalid? Was marked wrong.


That is a redundant phrase in English. You would ask: How is something? or, what is something like? Those are your options in English


Thanks! Good to know.


"How are his parents?"--What you said is wrong. Its not colloquially common, but it can have the exact same meaning no context is necessary. It has nothing to do with standing on its own. There's no rule in English as to what you just described


'How are his parents' means 'how are his parents doing/feeling'. It definitely needs context to work here, for example 'how are his parents with this kind of thing?' - 'Theyre pretty relaxed, but I wouldn't let them see the vodka'


No it would not. Thats more like how are his parents doing and in polish that would be more like "Jak sie majom jego rodzice" :) (P.S: Sorry i was to lazy to add "thèśę" and all that


"Jak się mają".


After reading all the comments, I remain unclear. Is this sentence, in Polish, used to ask "what are his parents like?" ... (are they nice, mean, etc.) or is sentence, in Polish, used to ask "how are his parents doing/feeling"...are they well, ill, happy, sad. Or, is it interchangeable and can be used, either way? If the latter is the case, if I am asked the question, how do I discern what the person is asking ... what are they like vs how are they doing/feeling?


The a bit colloquial construction of "How are his parents" would be "Jak się mają/miewają jego rodzice", "how are they feeling" would be "jak się czują".


It is clear now. Part of the problem for me is that it is an odd question. I do not remember ever asking what are someone's parents like. Thank you for the replies.


It means "What are they like ?".


My problem is and always will be not being able to recognize "nominative" "accusative" "genitive" etc. Show me the logic of nominative in this sentence?


They are the subject. You may not see it at first, but imagine the answer: "Jego rodzice są wysocy" (His parents are tall).


"How are his parents?" ?


Just saw the previous reply about this. However, depending on context, this phrase can also mean "what are his parents like".


I know "how are his parents" is wrong, but how about " how are his parents like"?


I believe that while "How are his parents" at least is correct English (just means something else), "How are his parents like" is not.


I was very confused by this one and the highlighted words didn't imply it means " like"


Well, there's nothing here to match "like" but this is just how the English construction looks... like.


*"how the English construction looks" or "what the English construction looks like"


Eh, and I thought I made a good joke. Thanks.


it WAS a good joke...


Well, that is what I meant. I guess it isn't clear because of how confusing it can be to explain that word.


Wouldn't be better to translate it as "What kind of parents does he have?" At least for understanding purposes (in this comment section) to not confuse "to like". Though, yes, the more common colloquial question in english is "What are his parents like?" I am guessing the problem here is that english speakers are forgetting that we use the word "like" for describing in metaphors.


Oops simile not metaphor!


I think it's too different structurally though. And maybe it's only my impression, but it seems to imply that I already have a bad opinion on them...


Just gets harder and harder. Kocham to


That's what... ah, nevermind.


This sentence could end in doing, saying, but it ends in like who makes this determination, it's not a complete sentence.


No, this is not a question about "What do his parents like doing". It's "What are they like?" and the answer could be "His parents are very nice people".


Hm, I see that "how are his parents like" is seen as incorrect. I'd like to know what make "What" correct and "How" incorrect.


I believe the answer is simply "English grammar", I don't think that "How are they like?" is correct in any context.


English is hard :) I wish there was a Russian version of Polish Duolingo :)




it is a request to describe the qualities of the subject's parents


How would you say it in Polish, if you are talking about professions and jobs and you wanted to ask: "What are his parents?" (builder, engeneer...)

Because that was what I imagined reading the sentence.


probably "Jakie są zawody jego rodziców?"


Yeah, that may work, I think I'd go with "Gdzie pracują jego rodzice?" which technically asks "Where do they work?" but you'd rather answer with professions than the names of the companies.


Thank you two :o)

Learn Polish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.