"I am standing opposite you."

Translation:Stoję naprzeciwko ciebie.

August 27, 2016

This discussion is locked.


Would cię not work here, instead of was? Was (here) is the genitive of wy, but nothing in the English sentence indicates this is speaking to more than one person, so the genitive of the singular version of wy (ty), cię, seems like it would fit?


There are two possible options for Genitive of singular 'you': accented "ciebie" and neutral 'cię'. Only the accented form should be at the end of the sentence (unless the sentence is literally 2, sometimes 3 words long). So it would be "Stoję naprzeciwko ciebie".

It's hard to say when 'cię' would be okay for 3-word sentence and when it's not. It sounds wrong to me here.


Isn't there a rule saying that after a preposition the accented form must be used? So it shouldn't matter how long the sentence is, it has to be 'ciebie' anyway...


You're absolutely right, naprzeciwko is a preposition, so the post-prepositional form must be used.

Note, that accented and post-prepositional forms are the same for the first and second person, but they have separate forms for the third person (e.g. naprzeciwko niego).


Good to remember, I have hardly encountered 'niego' (or 'niej') so far.


The notes said that the n-forms should be used after pronouns, but it never said anything about accented forms being used. Could you explain?


I believe you mean "after prepositions". Let's take a look at the table for 3rd person pronouns here: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Appendix:Polish_pronouns#Third-person_pronouns

Some of them have even 4 forms (this "-ń"), but let's keep it aside, it's rare and kinda dated/poetic.

So let's look at Genitive masculine. A simple sentence like "I am looking for him" will be in Polish "Szukam go". "go" is this basic, neutral form of the pronoun.

Now, let's contrast "him" and someone else, like simply "you". "I am looking for him, not for you!" will be "Szukam jego, a nie ciebie!" with both pronouns taking the emphasized form. If no separate emphasized form exists for a given example, then you just use the basic one, of course.

And finally we have the "n-forms" to use after a preposition, provided of course that such a separate form exist - you can see that they exist only for Genitive/Dative/Accusative in 3rd person. This would be like "I am standing opposite him" = "Stoję naprzeciwko niego".


What is the etymology of naprzeciwko?


Na (prepositional prefix) + przeciw (meaning: against, versus) + ko (optional suffix).

As to przeciw, wiktionary states the following:

From Proto-Slavic *pretivъ, *protivъ, *protivo, *protivǫ, *proti, from Proto-Indo-European *preti, *proti.


Similar etymology with Russian. Stoju naprotiw tiebia.


So, why not "...naprzeciwko Pana?"


No one asked for the formal pronouns yet, but I've just added them.


I'm still trying to wrap my brain around the formal you in Polish. So in this instance, how would I say, "I am standing opposite the gentleman"?


Possibly also "naprzeciwko pana", perhaps better "naprzeciwko pewnego pana" (opposite some gentleman). Or if we interpret 'the' as 'this', "naprzeciwko tego pana".


So the first option sounds exactly the same, determined by context, but is written with a lower case "p" while "you" takes a capital "P"?


If it's written in a direct message to 'you', then yes, it should be with a capital P. Like, imagine sending a text to someone you were supposed to meet (formal settings).

But if you find it in a dialogue in a book or movie subtitles, then it is just 'writing down what someone said' instead of addressing someone directly, and therefore it's not capitalized. That's why no Duolingo sentence (I think...) capitalizes any form of you/your, because those are sentences without context.


I thought if the English sentence would end in a pronoun, it get moved to before the verb in the Polish...altho as I'm typing this out I'm realizing that "opposite" isn't the verb, "am standing" is...so I guess now my question is, would "ja naprzeciwko was stoję" have been wrong too?


I'm still learning, too... I guess that it's not completely wrong, but the word order seems rather poetic ;-)


Confirming. Technically correct, but strange, and it seems to strongly convey that I am 'standing' (and not sitting, for example).

And indeed it ends with a pronoun because it's needed by a preposition, not by a verb.


My sound isn't working on the pronunciation, happening to anyone else?


That's an old problem, I'm afraid. The algorithm chooses an alternative translation ("was" instead of "ciebie"), but there's no recording available for this sentence.


Well... I think the only place where this problem (due to what you described) should appear is in the tile exercises, when you click on a tile with a form that wasn't used in any 'source sentence'. "was" definitely has been used in many.

Anyway, I made "Stoję naprzeciwko ciebie." the only 'best answer' as this is what we should do now.


No, I think that Michael's comment refers to the audio at the top of the comment page. Even if every single word in a tile exercise has an audio, the whole sentence usually has none if it isn't identical to the original Polish sentence. And this, unfortunately, really happens very often.


Ouch. Yeah, you're right, that can happen as well. But we are changing those, so slowly but surely, we minimize the number of such issues.

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