"Pole."

Translation:I am sorry for you.

February 23, 2017

30 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/AndreasII

Pole is used a lot in everyday life. Mostly it is an expression of sympathy, when something bad has happened (trivial or serious). It means "I feel sorry for you", not "I am sorry for what I did". If you're excusing yourself, you would say "Samahani".

In Northern Tanzania.it is used for an even wider range of situations. Here you can even expect to hear "Pole na kazi" (I'm sorry you have to work) when someone comes to your office, or "pole" when you look slightly tired, or are carrying something heavy.

February 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SamGme

'Pole za kazi', surely!

February 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreasII

I've only heard "Pole na kazi", but I'm not sure if that's only colloquial, or if it's grammatically correct.

February 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive

It is used in formal speech and it's grammatically correct.

March 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreasII

Thanks!

March 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive

No such thing, as far as I know. Pole na kazi is said to someone who had a hectic day at work and you want to console them.

March 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SamiaELSharkawy

what does that mean? google is not giving me an translate

April 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gazelle1596

I am sorry for you/on your behalf + for/connecting particle + "work"

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SamiaELSharkawy

thank you

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BobJoeBuilder

Would you say "Pole" to an elder, or would you use a more formal word?

February 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SamGme

If you had done something wrong, you'd (or at least I do) say 'Samahani'. Pole is more like "I feel sorry for you". It's definitely acceptable if used in that context towards an elder.

February 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BobJoeBuilder

Thanks

February 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PatrickinPanama

How is 'pole' pronounced? 'Po-lay'?

March 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive

Yes.

March 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gazelle1596

"Poh-leh" is a bit closer. Or to be accurate: ['pɔ:lɛ]

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Ruqaiya00

I've been around Tanzanians my whole life and we use pole for "slowly" or "be careful". so it's used to show sympathy and to alert. this is a personal interpretation, I could be wrong, please correct me if so.

April 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JustinRasm1

"Pole pole" is slowly. I believe they all come from the root "kupoa" to cool down. It's an imperative "cool down" but not as in settle down (nyamaza). More like "I am wishing that you will cool down/recover from this bad/hard thing." That's also why it's inappropriate to use as "I'm sorry" and why you can say "Pole na kazi" without meaning "sorry you have to work". "Pole pole," sometimes informally abbreviated "pole," is like "go cool-ly" or as an imperative the way people use "Slowly!" in English.

May 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/nikasimm93

so if "Pole na kazi" doesn't mean or doesn't always mean " sorry you have to work", what would be a better translation?

June 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gazelle1596

It does mean "Sorry you have to work." "Sorry work is so hard on you." "I feel for you (not seeing your family so much/being stressed/... etc.) due to work." It would be used in a context that the other has just stated they must go to work now or they have a lot of work to do. (possibly other situations?)

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JustinRasm1

Yes, literally, it still means "sorry for your work" but I think the connotation is more like "sorry for the hardship" whether because they're cultivating a field in the hot sun or they have loads of papers to grade.

June 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/TobyBartels

I thought at first that I had to translate ’pole’ from English to Swahili, and I didn't know how to do that!

July 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Amygdala123

Pole does not only mean sorry. You can also use it to congratulate someone.
My understanding is that you can almost translate it to "I feel the way you feel" or "I share your emotions". Therefore it can be used as: I share your happiness or sorrow, Simply, Pole!
I have heard it used this way in Tanzania. Would be grateful I any native speaker could confirm if I'm correct.

June 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive

Pole is not used to congratulate someone as far as I know. You can say hongera if you wish to congratulate someone. Pole is only used with emotions of sadness, or to console the downtrodden.

June 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gazelle1596

It is not a congratulation; "I feel the way you feel." - but only in a non-positive situation (it does not have to be particularly bad, but NOT nice :))

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive

True.

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/lulumuti

I dont seem to be getting souns for any of these lessons. I have sent my feedback to support but i have not gottwn any feedback. Has anyone of you had tge same problem, how did you sort it out

February 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gita-ji

I try putting the words in Forvo, e.g. https://forvo.com/word/tafadhali_mssada/#sw

May 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gazelle1596

The feedback takes a couple of weeks to months as they are still developing it and there is a lot of feedback they have to go through.

May 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/thinkingmom

The Swahili audio is not working. Any suggestions? Thank you.

June 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/the3lusive
July 27, 2018
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