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  5. "Your back is red."

"Your back is red."

Translation:Twoje plecy są czerwone.

February 25, 2016

15 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alexander577428

Is back a plural in Polish?


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

yes. It is one of the always plural nouns


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobinB896941

But why do I have two (or more) backs?

Caliban says "They are making the creature that has two backs" in Shakespeare's The Tempest - but that can't really be the answer here...


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

You obviously have just one back. Thats also the meaning in the polish sentence, off course. The polish language just has words, that are always used in the plural form. Like plecy here. Others may be 'drzwi', 'urodzine', ...


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

"urodziny" :) But yes, we have quite several pluralia tantum nouns.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BruceAdams14

For those of us who haven't done the latin course yet what does "pluralia tantum" mean?


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

Why was "Wasze plecy są czerwone" marked wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alik1989

I'd say that "your back" refers to the back of one person.


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

Are you saying that in modern Polish personal (Twój) and impersonal (Wasz) are only used in singular and plural situations? It gets complicated for me when I consider that "back" is a plural word and "your" is an adjective that should agree. Please explain further! Thank you.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alik1989

Twój is the second person singular possessive pronoun, and wasz the second person plural possessive pronoun. In Early Modern English there used to be the same distinction (thy/your).

It's twoje here because it agrees with the plural noun plecy.


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

But if you were speaking to a group of people who had been in the sun too long, then you could say "Wasze plecy są czerwone", correct?


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

But then that wouldn't be "your back" in English but "your backs", right?

Unless of course you're not claiming that this should be an accepted answer. Yes, on its own that Polish sentence makes perfect sense.


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

Okay, but if "plecy" means "back", then what's the word for "shoulders"?


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

I think that technically that's "barki" (sing. "bark"), but many people would say "ramiona" (sing. "ramię"), although that word can be used for the whole arm, especially upper arm.

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