"What would you talk about?"

Translation:O czym byś mówił?

February 27, 2016

23 Comments
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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndRL82

Why is "O czym rozmawiałbyś?" incorrect?


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

I think it is technically correct, nut I would never say it this way. I think we apply the same rule to "by" as to the pronouns (not at the end if possible) , but I do not know for sure.


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

Does the "by" separate from the verb only in the second person?


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

no, it can happen in all persons.
bym mówił, bym mówiła; byś mówił; byś mówiła
by mówił; by mówiła; by mówiło
byśmy mówili; byśmy mówiły, byście mówili; byśmy mówiły
by mówili, by mówiły


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/br0d4
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I think it is worth to add, that this contains a phenomenon very specific to Polish language: in 1-st and 2-nd person singular and plural, the ending of verb is moved from the verb to the particle "by", that is why "by" gets endings -m , -ś , -śmy, -ście:

  • 1st person singular: by mówiłem -> transformed to bym mówił, by mówiłam - bym mówiła,
  • 2nd person singular: by mówił -> byś mówił, by mówił -> byś mówiła,
  • 3rd person singular: by mówił; by mówiła; by mówiło - no transformation
  • 1st person plural: by mówiliśmy -> byśmy mówili, by mówiłyśmy -> byśmy mówiły,
  • 2nd person plural: by mówiliście -> byście mówili, by mówiłyście -> byście mówiły,
  • 3rd person plural: by mówili, by mówiły - no transformation

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

This just needs to be a hint for the course, thank you.


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

Is it true for ALL the verbs?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/br0d4
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Hm, you made me think a bit. And no, it is not always true.

  • You do not usually place a separated particle "-by-" before verbs that do not need a subject, like "padać" (to rain). And you cannot do that if there is nothing else before such verb.
  • You have to attach the particle -by- to words "jeśli", "gdyby", "jakby", "żeby", "aby" etc. in conditional mood, see https://prologpublishing.com/blog/zdania-warunkowe-w-jezyku-polskim.html

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

Can I say:

O czym byś porozmawiał?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/va-diim

So byście cannot follow mówili? It must go ahead of the verb?


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

Then it would be glued to the verb (mówilibyście), but it does seem strange to put such a word at the end of the sentence. I don't know if this is a rule, but I see above that immery thinks the same, so maybe let's leave it like that.


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

Why is my answer "O czym bys gadal" incorrect? Gadac is the verb to talk? Mowic is to say, no?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/br0d4
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The verb "gadać" is not exactly "to talk". It is closer to "to schmooze", "to twaddle", "to gab". It is highly colloquial and slightly pejorative. You can say to your friend or family member "Nie gadaj głupot" [Do not twaddle fluff], or scold your child "Nie gadaj, jedz obiad" [Do not gab, eat the lunch]. You can say that some people eating and drinking at the table "Gadają o różnych sprawach" [Are schmoozing on various subjects]. You could comment a politician's speech "Gada głupoty" [He is jawing b*llocks], but you can also jokingly hail someone's speech "Dobrze gada, dajcie mu wódki!" [He is talking right, give him some vodka!]

"O czym bys gadał" could be OK when addressed to a close friend, but when addressed to a stranger, or someone who is preparing an important discourse - it would rather be considered disrespectful.


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

OK, I understand. That's a bit more clear.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Meikel100

Not sure about this one, but wouldn't "o czym rozmawiałbyś?" be acceptable?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/br0d4
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The word order is awkward, it would require an unusual context to be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/F4yY9kZj

I used 'rozmawiać' instead of 'mówić'; that ought to have been accepted.


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

What was your complete sentence?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eggers7

Well, mine was o czym mówiłbyś which is very similar to Meikel100s "o czym rozmawiałbyś?" above Just awkward word order, or positively wrong?


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

It's probably too much to say 'wrong', but the -byś part shouldn't end up at the end of the sentence (a lot of words shouldn't end up at the end of the sentence, as you probably already know).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/F4yY9kZj

It must have been 'O czym byś rozmawiał?


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

That's surely better grammatically. We accept it, but it would make more sense if it was "O czym byś [z nim/z nią/etc.] rozmawiał?" (so it'd say 'with whom' you're supposed to have a conversation), or if it was plural 'you' "O czym byście rozmawiali?".

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