As there is no "swój", I feel like it should be "this watch": I might as well have talked about my watch in an earlier sentence and describe how he looked at mine, not his.
Well, without context, it seems the most logical to presume it is his watch. If it was a clock (on the wall) 'the' would be the default, but with a watch, he is probably wearing it.
I have the same problem. I wanted to use "the" but there was no such button. "His" can be guessed but actually there is no such word in the Polish phrase.
Yes, Polish often omits such words if they seem obvious. It's a good thing to learn.
Spojrzeć is a reflective form of patrzeć, you can sometimes translate it as to take a look.
He was looking = On patrzył
He looked = On spojrzał
Perhaps this man was looking at the watch in the store? There is no pronoun in this sentence
I agree. There were no indications that the watch was "his". Why not "jego zegarek?"
Maybe in this sentence it's not as obvious (as it often is) that it is his own watch, but still that's very probable. You could use "swój zegarek" to be sure.
"jego zegarek" would be "He (George) was looking at his (Fred's) watch".
Exactly it doesn't have to be his watch and without any context to me the use of 'A' would be the most likely.
According to wiktionary (both en and pl), it should be "patrzał". Is that also correct is it a mistake?
For some reason Polish has two versions of this verb- patrzyć and patrzeć. they have the same present forms but "patrzył" and "patrzał" past forms. While both forms are theoretically correct, Patrzył is much more common past form, while "patrzeć" is much more common
And a lingot from me! I didn't even know that, I thought that 'patrzał' is an error...
Because "watch" is a singular, countable noun, it requires a determiner (in this case "his" or "the" or maybe "a") to be grammatically correct.
Grammatically, it requires a determiner, which could be either an article or a pronoun, which is why in English both "He was looking at the watch" and "He was looking at his watch" are grammatically correct, though in most contexts (i.e. if he was looking at the watch on his wrist to check the time) the pronoun would sound more natural.
PL swój / jego : ENG his Where in the polish sentence in than "jego" or "swój"??? The correct translation of "On patrzył na zegarek" is "He was looking at the watch". Anyway if it will be "On patrzył na swój zegarek" the correct translation would be "He was looking at his watch". (I am native polish.)
Well, English uses possessives a lot, while Polish doesn't have to, so if you have a watch on your wrist you can say "Patrzę na zegarek" but English will often use 'my watch' here. Not necessarily of course, but it seems probable.
Adding to this point, English uses possessives a lot because singular countable nouns need determiners. In a situation where someone was looking at his watch to check the time (i.e. the most likely or most common situation for "on patrzył na zegarek"), it would not sound at all natural to say "he was looking at the watch" or "he was looking at a watch" (though both are grammatically correct). Since a determiner is required, this leaves "his" as the most natural choice and "he was looking at his watch" is definitely the most natural sentence in this situation. Situations where the other two sentences fit are possible, but much less common.