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"small boys, small girls"

Translation:mali chłopcy, małe dziewczynki

May 15, 2016



Why is 'małe dziewczyny' not accepted?


Because in Polish dziewczyny=big girls dziewczynki=little girls

Dziewczyny are older than dziewczynki.


Note: Describing anyone older than about 6-7 as a 'big girl' is likely to be understood as a comment on their weight, not their age.

[deactivated user]

    idk ¯_(ツ)_/¯


    Shouldn't it be małi chłopcy?


    In Polish, plural has two forms: masculine personal gender, and not masculine-personal gender. The first one is used almost exclusively for groups of all-male people and mixed groups of people, the second one for groups all-female people and basically everything else.

    So boys = chłopcy is obviously masculine personal. And while many adjectives have the -ły ending in masculine singular, in plural (masculine personal plural) it turns into -li.


    I wish this was written in the intro to a lesson.


    no. "łi" is extremely rare in Polish. Also the rule is that you take the root of adjective, soften a consonant and add "y" or "i"

    mały-mał-mal-mali głodny-głodn-głodń-głodni szybki-szybk-szybc-szybcy dobry-dobr-dobrz-dobrzy


    Are there any Polish words that contain 'łi'? I thought that combination was illegal in Polish phonology. Of course you have that sound in the loanword 'weekend', but even that retains the English spelling.


    And "Whiskas" :D

    I don't think so, although I cannot guarantee it, of course.


    I have a children's book about various vehicles and their drivers and a flying away airplane is making a sound described as: "łiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii"


    No, "mali" is correct

    • 257

    Why is "Mali chlopaki" not accepted?


    @Keag: This is a very good question! Not in the sense that "mali chłopaki" should be accepted, but why in the world a masculine gender personal word "chłopak" takes on a nonmasculine adjective "małe?" Unlike "chłopacy," which takes on the masculine adjective "mali?" This is an inconsistency that I cannot explain.


    a small boy - mały chłopiec/mały chłopak
    small boys - mali chłopcy/małe chłopaki

    a small girl - mała dziewczynka
    small girls - małe dziewczynki

    It is awkward to say "mała dziewczyna", because the term "dziewczyna", already refers to older and bigger girl than "dziewczynka" (little girl).


    What is the difference between ''małe'' and '' mała''.


    "mała" is for feminine singular. "małe" is either neuter singular, or 'not masculine-personal plural' (everything apart 'groups of people including at least one man').


    Mała ---> girl (dziewczyna) Małe ---> girls (dziewczynki)


    what's the difference between mali and male?


    Note that it's "maŁe", but "maLi".

    There are two plurals in Polish. "mali" is the 'masculine personal' form. It's usually different than the other forms (that's why here it has L and not Ł). 'masculine personal' is used for 'groups of people with at least one man'. Like "boys", of course.

    The other plural is called 'not masculine-personal'. Basically, it's used for anything else. Women, children (if you use the word 'children' instead of specifying the gender), dogs, trees, boxes, cars, etc.


    Małe ---> girls Mali ---> boys


    Not always: mali chłopacy but małe chłopaki!


    I know that dziewczyzna/dziewczynka basically mean the same thing, but out of curiosity, what's the plural form of dziewczyzna? I thought it would be dziewczyzni


    a girl/a girlfriend - dziewczyna/koleżanka
    girls/girlfriends - dziewczyny/koleżanki


    @MythicalEspeon: Sorry, but I can't help myself not mentioning that the ending "-yzna", applied to "dziewczyna" sounds like the meat of "dziewczyna." Probably because it sounds very much like "dziczyzna" = game (ツ) ROFL


    I'm still not clear about why "dziewczyny" can't be used. There's nothing about the English word "girl" that implies younger or older age. You can be an older girl who is physically small (mała). Please clarify.


    We'll change the English translation to "little girls". "małe dziewczyny" really isn't a probable thing.


    I'm not sure why changing it to "little girl" would make a difference. Both 'small' and 'little' are synonyms that denote lesser size/amount not age. So, for example, a puppy might be a little dog but a little dog does not necessarily have to be a puppy.

    Maybe there's no way to make this into a clear translation since girl is more broad than dziewczynka/dziewczyna. I am curious, though, why you can't say 'mała dziewczyna' and how you would indicate that an older girl is small/petite.


    We say “drobna dziewczyna” for a petite size girl, who is at least a teenager. For a short girl we say “niska dziewczyna.”Mała” does mean short, but it has a somewhat paternizing connotation: “Ty, mała, nie podskakuj.”

    On the other hand the English “little girl” more often than not means just a very young girl, which should be translated to “dziewczynka.”

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