"Żadne jabłka nie są niebieskie."

Translation:No apples are blue.

March 19, 2016

31 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

Another occurrence of the Polish double negative


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

Yes, and it seems to act as a singular negative according to the accepted answer which is "Apples are not blue" Vs. "No Apples are not blue". Is that right?


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

Yup. If we were translating word for word, it would be "No apples are not blue", but the Slavic languages often feature double negatives not only meaning a single negative, but actually required for the sentence to be properly negated (but only once :D).


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

What is even more interesting is that the double negative in (informal) English becomes a single negative when translated into Polish! Further down on this page, Jellei shows an example where the phrase "I don't need no man" becomes "Nie potrzebuję mężczyzny".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pete357534

Could one say "Żadne jabłko nie jest niebieskie"? When does one use plural vs singular with żaden?


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

So... Wszystkie są bieskie :D


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

:D

Although I don't believe "bieski" is an existing word, it could be considered to be an adjective from "bies", a rather dated word for a devil (especially if we presume there are many devils rather than just one).

"Biesy" is also a famous novel by Dostoevsky.


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

I thought it's worth mentioning that before the christianisation of Poland, the country's inhabitants were polytheists, so supernatural beings usually came in larger numbers (biesy, czarty = demons). Diabeł (the devil) was a greek loanword which was introduced later in order to refer to the main antagonist of the new faith.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pz3j15

Can you provide some link in English explaining when, and when not to, use double negative? Thanks.


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

No apple is blue is not accepted. Is that correct?


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

I guess you should keep to the grammatical number here. The meaning is virtually the same, but technically your sentence is "Żadne jabłko nie jest niebieskie".


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

Sure, but you could take as well as criterion to preserve the number of negations, or reflexives, or whatever, but that would be bad idea. Thing is, when you translate you lose structure and you cannot ask here to preserve number. And anyway is "no apples are blue" correct English?


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

Well okay, I guess "No apple is blue" is close enough.


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

I wrote the English version of this as being 'no apple is ever blue' to emphasize the żadne could this be a way of saying it?


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

It feels redundant. "Ever" implies that the fact underlying this statement doesn't change over time.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/acfern
  • 1763

Not redundant to me. Ever puts the emphasis on the fact that it's just not possible. It's a figure of speech.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mudkip20

"None of the apples are blue"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stefan873422

If 'None of the apples are blue is accepted' – which is the case – then so should 'None of the apples is blue'. None means 'not one,' so it should be considered to read 'Not one of the apples is blue.' 'None ... are' (rather than 'None ... is') is another example in English of where usage that is not technically correct has become correct through acceptance.


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

Some other singular variants worked already, added this one.


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

I wrote "None of the apples is blue", and that is accepted. But the meaning of this is distinctly, if slightly, different from "No apples are blue". How would you translate these two sentences into Polish?


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

I'd go with "Żadne z jabłek nie jest niebieskie" for the first one.

Sentences with forms of "żaden" are hard to translate into English in a natural way, so we are more lenient with the translations.


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

It's better to say/Lepiej powiedzieć: "Nie ma żadnych niebieskich jabłek" - "There are no blue apples".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rimdus
  • 1181

Why not "apples are not blue"?


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

Well, it completely forgets the word "żadne", although of course the meaning is more or less the same...


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

But the fact there is a blue apple: D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ines357762

I am just curious to understand how is żadny a demonstrative in Polish? Is it because of the double negative? I thought żadny was (indefinite) pronoun. Can anyone help?


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

Actually "żadny" isn't a correct form, although it seems like a perfectly logical one. "żaden" is used instead.

No, it's not a demonstrative pronoun at all. Frankly, It's a negative pronoun (no idea if that's correct terminology in English).

This skill is called "Determiners", but it covers a lot more.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bubblegod22

So how do you translate the English double negative into Polish? It has a distinct meaning from positive sentences, but is that all there can be in Polish to translate an English double negative? Just a positive sentence?


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

Well, we'd need to consider specific examples. If that's something like "We don't need no education" or "I don't need no man", then putting aside what we think about the grammar there, the meaning is the same as with a single negative, so it translates simply to "Nie potrzebujemy edukacji"/"Nie potrzebuję mężczyzny", which are definitely negative sentences.

I believe you mean some other kinds of sentences, but I'd need to see an example.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaryCarson15

How would I say ' not all apples are blue'?


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

"Nie wszystkie jabłka są niebieskie."

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