Is Polish hard/ a good language to learn?

At the moment i am learning Dutch, French and German and i would like to learn Polish too. I've heard its hard, however if it is i'm willing to work, but is it basically impossible? If anyone does study it, could you message me? P.s if you study French, German or Dutch i'm willing to help, because it would be nice to talk to someone in those languages too.

Thanks, Maisie :) x

February 25, 2017


If I may repeat a comment I made in an earlier discussion....

Polish is not an easy language -- in addition to the various foibles common in Slavic languages (perfective vs imperfective verbs, the declension system, etc), Polish has a lot of irregularities which I understand are due the greater amount of interaction between Polish and other non-Slavic languages.

This said, even though I had never studied any Slavic languages before Polish, I finished the Polish tree, just got it all gold and even managed a 5/5 on the Duolingo test (which I suspect was due to a bug, but I am not complaining). The tree is challenging but not insanely difficult (which is quite the feat given the complexity of Polish) and the moderators are very responsive to questions or suggestions about alternative answers. There is also an active Facebook group for Duolingo Polish learners, and quite a lot of resources available on the Internet to complement or extend Duolingo work (more than you would think; there are actually a lot of people out there interested in learning Polish!). I have gotten a lot out of the course and happily recommend it.

February 25, 2017

thank you, i did not know about the extra resources and i will start learning now!- even if it breaks me XD

February 25, 2017

I studied Polish for a while, before my travel plans changed. I'd never studied a language with noun declension before, and that took A LOT of getting used to, particularly because some word endings can mean more than one thing The vocabulary isn't similar to other languages I've learned, which also slowed me down.

I found I progressed about five times slower than I did through the Spanish course, but I progressed. If you're willing to put in the time, it's as learnable as any other language.

February 25, 2017

In terms of vocabulary, the good news is that you will find a lot of Latin roots which you may be already familiar with, eg.: opinia, kwestia, decyzja... as well as Germanic words such as dach, cukier, farba... However, the base vocabulary is of slavic origin, which you will need to learn from scratch.

Grammatically, it is quite different from those languages you named, however I do see similarities with German, albeit only sporadically. The most challenging part might be the distinction in verbal aspect and the case declension for nouns, adjectives and numerals.

Here is my personal opinion on grammar: Even if you should find it difficult to grasp some grammatical concepts, you can totally make up for it by investing more time into listening and reading exercises. After hearing certain phrases often enough, you should be able to reproduce them, no matter how complicated or strange their grammatical structure is, because after some time your brain will always go: "it just sounds right".

February 25, 2017

I don't think any language is basically impossible.

February 25, 2017

Polish is both hard and good to learn. I find it very rewarding to study.

February 25, 2017

Hi Maisie, go for it. It is the only language I am learning at the moment and yes it is complicated and difficult and infuriating at times when so called rules are forever contradicting themselves but it is a very rewarding language well worth the effort. The declension and case endings can be really challenging but the basic vocabulary and spelling are quite straight forward [once you've learned the sounds]To my ears the language also sounds wonderful and if a halfwit such as me can get to grips with it then I reckon anyone can. Good luck :-)

February 27, 2017

I also think you shoul go for it. I have recently started Irish on Duolingo, and really enjoy it even if I am progressing really slowly. By the way, I'm Polish and can say that we really appreciate it when a foreigner speaks even a little of our language (which unfortunatley doesn't seem common). Good luck if you decide to start the Polish tree!!!

February 27, 2017

I'm currently juggling between Polish and Japanese. Polish, because I damn well should know at least some of it considering the number of Polish people I know, and Japanese, because I have always wanted to understand it considering the movies and games that come from Japan are among my favourite things.

I can say with absolute certainty that the Japanese is going in easier.... and it really shouldn't be. The writing system is baffling, the grammar is completely different from European languages, the vocabulary is 99% different from any language I know, and I don't know anyone Japanese to help me, yet I am still having an easier time with it :)

The stumbling block for me is pronunciation. I thought I had no problem pronouncing anything at all, until I met Polish. The sounds of French and Spanish roll off my tongue, I can bark in German, I convincingly sound the tones of Chinese and I can tell you where the the elusive letter 'ayn' lives, but Polish pronunciation runs up and stomps all over my sandcastle, kicks sand in my face and then steals my bucket and spade for good measure.

Someone posted a clip of an old Polish WWII movie the other day which pretty much sums it up (it's a comedy): -- "....Hi, My name is Grzegorz Brzęczyszczykiewicz"

All that said, learning to understand it has been a great experience and I would recommend it to anyone. To paraphrase JFK, don't do it because it is easy, do it because it is hard :)

February 28, 2017

I think it's a very valuable language to study. The grammar is intricate, and if you're an English speaker, it forces you to parse the language in a way that you normally wouldn't have to. It's not a language that will yield its secrets immediately, but with patience, the consonant changes, the little quirks of the grammar, and the prefixes and postfixes will start to make sense to you. The intimidating-looking spelling is largely an illusion. The Latin alphabet wasn't designed for Polish, it was designed for Latin, but if you're an English speaker, sz, cz, rz, etc. will start to make as much sense as ch, sh, th, etc. Words sometimes look longer than they really are, and you'll get used to it quickly.
The verb system requires you to think in a way that you might not usually think, but it makes sense. It's a good entree into the world of Slavic languages, without the alphabet problem of Russian (which isn't a big deal) , but with a good sized literature behind it.

March 2, 2017

I am Polish and I have to say that my language is one of the most difficult in the world, but I think it is good to study. I am learning German on Duolingo, maybe if you would have any questions about Polish, feel free to ask me :)

February 28, 2017

Nah, Slavic languages are a piece of cake (well, at least for me).

December 21, 2017

Polish language looks really hard but if you do all your best I think you will be able to get it finally.

February 12, 2019
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