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  5. "Odwiedziłeś ciocię?"

"Odwiedziłeś ciocię?"

Translation:Have you visited your aunt?

March 19, 2016



A great discussion, and all true. Although the Polish may be entirely correct and natural, the resultant English is not. Perhaps this might be one of those times where one cannot use a literal word for word translation, but rather must translate the thought and intent for this to be correct in both the source and target language.


‘Visited aunt’? ‘Auntie‘, maybe. I’ve never heard ‘aunt’ used like that.


For me "auntie" is just a diminutive form. Either should fit depending on context.


AnCatDubh meant "Auntie" works because it can function as a nickname. We can say "Have you visited Auntie?" (without determiner) because Auntie functions as a proper name, but we can't say in English "Have you visited aunt?” because it is lacking the obligatory determiner (a, the, your, my aunt, etc.), and because "Aunt" would be very, very strange to use to refer to someone except when directly speaking to them.

The lack of determiners in Polish where English speakers expect them is kind of hard to get used to, but the occasional dropping of pronoun determiners (twoje, jej, etc.) is even harder to grasp because they are sometimes required. It's hard to tell when it can be dropped or assumed, when you start out linguistically programmed to never leave them out! That's all. :)


Is it implicit that it's your aunt?


I would say so. If it were any other aunt we would likely specify or it would be clearer from context.


This one was weird. It assumes "your" here, but couldn't context be used to mean my aunt, or Bob's aunt, or just any aunt?


'Did you visit your aunt' is the proper translation.


I put "You visited your aunt?" and it got marked wrong. Why is this incorrect? There's no context as to whether this is a lead off question or one of clarification. How would I tell? Would they be worded differently?


Well, "czy" would make it obvious that this is a 'real question', but it's not needed. Added "You visited your aunt?".


Would this be a male person asking the question?


Not necessarily. A man or a woman could say that, but the person to whom the question is addressed is a man.


It's understood from context and in English We say similar sentences in English. If you're talking to your sister and you say "Have you talked to mom today?" Even though the possessive pronoun is omitted, it's understood whose mom it is referring to.

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