Na + accusative or do + genitive
How do I differentiate the use of na + accusative and do + genitive for expressing "to somewhere"? How do I know whether I should use na or do for countries, cities, buildings etc?
I've just seen a great resource for it. http://popolskupopolsce.edu.pl/pogotowie-jezykowe #12 czasowniki oznaczające ruch i stan
Unfortunately it's all in Polish, but:
iść do+genitive ; być w+ locative ; wracać z + genitive
- kraj=country ;
- building (house, theatre),
- "green architecture"=park, forest
iść na +accusative; być na +locative wracać z+ accusative
- important institution (post, railway station)
- sport activity
- big area
- "ear" concert, lecture
- "eye" movie, spectacle
- "mouth" coffee, lunch/dinner
iść do+genitive ; być u+accusative ; wracać od + genitive
- a person (professor, grandmother, friend)
This is a great link, thank you. Looking at #12, though, I think perhaps you have the accusatives and genitives switched? For example in the first group for kraj, miasto, etc. it's iść do + dopełniacz, być w + miejscownik; wracać z + dopełniacz
Can "to my sister" (etc.) also use a preposition like k (like Slovak k mojej sestry) - does Polish also have this? Or is it always do?
Polish has a preposition "ku" but it is more like "towards". It is "do" in "to my sister".
I'm a Polish native speaker and I'll try to help you out :).
I'd say you use "do+genitive" more often, like, for instance:
Jadę do Stanów Zjednoczonych. - I'm going to the USA.
Idę do szkoły. - I'm going to school.
Jadę do Madrytu. - I'm going to Madrid.
I think you'd use "do" for all countries and cities.
You'd use "na" in some cases, like
Idę na basen. - I'm going to the swimming pool.
Idę na imprezę - I'm going to the party.
Unfortunately, I don't know why it is so or whether there is an explanation ;/.
Nevertheless, I hope this has helped you a little.
Let me know if you have any other questions and maybe I'll be able to help. :)
It's not the only one exception. Simlarly we say "Jadę na Ukrainę/Słowację/Węgry/Litwę/Łotwę/Białoruś".