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  5. "Mam tylko jednego cukierka."

"Mam tylko jednego cukierka."

Translation:I have only one candy.

January 10, 2016



In english, generally candy is thought of as american exoression. We have candy floss..the spun sugar ball you buy at fairs, otherwise it is a sweet or sweets.


Also, I don't think I've ever heard "a candy."


I just asked a native Polish speaker whether "Mam tylko jeden cukierek" is okay, and all she said was "No. Because przypadki have no mercy." But.... on the WSJP dictionary, it say it's both M2(masculine animate) and M3(masculine inanimate)?


It is OK for me, but then, I would also say „Mam tylko jeden pomidor” so yeah… ;)

It is like immery said, Polish is currently undergoing a change in declension patterns WRT to masculine-inanimate nouns, so some people use one pattern and some use the other, sometimes it can even depend on specific noun, where the same speaker can do one thing for one noun and the other for another, different, noun.

Your friend just happens to belong to the group that always 'animates' nouns. ;) Theoretically speaking, in prescribed literary language rules, it should be „tylko jeden cukierek”, but it is getting very hard to find someone who really speaks like that.


If asked if you have any more candy,. the reply in english would be ,i only have one piece of candy. I have one candy could denote a type of candy ergo lollypop or candy bar etc.


What is the change about? Do people think that the masculine-inanimate form is going to gradually disappear completely, or that there's going to continue to be an arbitrary division of masculine nouns?


I can't imagine it disappearing completely (Widzę stołu? Widzę stoła? Noooo), but for example many words connected with new technologies behave like that. Mam smartfona, mam pendrive'a, mam laptopa...


we have trouble with those nouns. nobody knows what is correct.


Unfortunately those with higher educations have to extol their knowledge on the ignorant masses. Though lacking a college degree I had used commonsense to start and operate a very successful business for 54 years, I'm sure if you log on to Google and Duda water Sports you will find remnants of it after I sold it at 78. There comes a time to call it quits and enjoy the fruits of your labors. Communication is the major factor in any enterprise and lack of it means almost certain failure. %4 years would indicate there was a modicum of truth in what I say. Incidentally I had 17 years in the printing trade offset and letterpress before starting my business and employing my associates while I worked at GE Aircraft the last 15 years as a chemical milling tech. I am very proud of the fact that during the 25 years of employment i garnered five substantial cash awards and two letters of commendation. I attribute this to working on my communication skills and presentations to staff. Communication on a ninth grade level for the sake of intelligent and understandable communication. Now I am proud to say using Doulingo I am expanding my communication skills while keeping my memory sharp and dementia at bay. all it requires is initiative. For this I thank Jellei and Duolingo, I may pass on but will not be in a vegetative state when I do. Thanks


So why is this genetive?


It is accusative, but cukierek is of the "even more special " masculine nouns that are animated even though even though they should not.


This is awesome. The candy monster


In polish wikipedia, it says cukierkek is a

"rzeczownik, rodzaj męskorzeczowy"

....i.e. a "noun, of type męskorzeczowy"

where "męskorzeczowy" appears to mean "masculine-inanimate" (according to my humble translation skills)....

Just a case of the entry being wrong, or have I mistranslated?

In WSJP.pl its marked as of type m2, m3

"część mowy: rzeczownik rodzaj gramatyczny: m2, m3"

I looked up lekarz (m1) and psa (m2) to deduce that m1 = personal, m2 = animate (but not personal), so m3 must mean non-animate?

So it appears WSJP.pl is saying that it can be both animate and inanimate. Correct?

ASIDE: Immery, where is that PDF you linked to that defined these terms for WSJP.pl (m1,m2,m3 etc.) ? (I'm at a different PC today, i have it open on my laptop at home lol)


I looked it up and I think you are right. M1 Męskoosobowy (Masculine Personal) M2 Męskozwierzęcy (Masculine Animate) M3 Męskonieżywotny (Masculine Inanimate)

So I guess "Mam tylko jeden cukierek" is also plausible here?


cukierek is in the "it's complicated" category with pomidor, kotlet and many more. We are experiencing a shift in declension pattern of those nouns, so depending on the person speaking and situation accusative can take = nominative or =genitive.

I think "mam tylko jeden cukierek" is a good translation, but I would never say it.

  • 1836

Exactly. Accusative form "cukierek" is formal, used eg. in writing; the form "cukierka" is used in speech; see: http://sgjp.pl/leksemy/#478/cukierek


Could one say "...piece of candy" (?)


in Polish cukierki are countable. If it means I have only one krówka why not


In Australia a lolly is the same as a candy. I only have one lolly.


Yep I live in Australia also. The Poles have been Americanised


Actually, I believe Poles usually use the British words for most things.


Well... the problem is that for most of the English speaking world 'a lolly' is something completely different (or rather: more specific)... and sometimes the 'only accepted' answers get suggested and may confuse people...


Mrs Mop is correct. In British English, it is a sweet. You can have one sweet. You would not have a piece of sweet (unlike the US English "piece of candy" described earlier).


Hurrah! As a non-American speaker of English I really struggle with the candy translation. So can we have 'I have only one sweet' added to the accepted list, please?


It works already.


Well, that works. Although I will never get used to "sweets" meaning something more specific than just "słodycze"...


Come on! Is Polish not complicated enough without adding a group of random words which act like they are animate when they are actually inanimate?


Or maybe they've been animate all along and we just never realised.


What about candy corn? This is all over the place along with hard candy and sugarless candy.


If Polish candy is animate, then nie jem, dzięki.


I am a native English speaker and I almost never use the word "candy", why? Because I speak British English not USA English. Its difficult enough learning Polish, without also remembering to translate in USA English!


'Sweet' is also accepted. Do you have other suggestions?


Jeden kawolek cukierka"


I suggested: I have only got one candy. This ,to me, sounds more fluent in English and is probably how I would express it.


Sure, added.


Language is extremely fluid, the English I spoke in school seventy years ago is considered archaic in these times. Fifty years from now , we not be able to understand what is being said using today's terminology. We've gone from communication to dissecting to prove our grasp of it and in the process lost what Winston Churchill said abut communicating. Legalese is one of the biggest problems, say it in such a way that the unwashed and those sans a college degree don't understand. It's easier to take advantage of them that way. Common sense and a formal ninth grade education speaking.


Somewhere in this morass we have overlooked communication, regardless of presentation or local use to describe candy or whatever it's called there we have gotten into a peeing contest over terminology. If you want it done right, do it yourself, if you want chaos, give it to a committee. Sounds like we have one here.


Lawyers nowadays take pains to communicate simply. They lose business if they don't.

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