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  1. #1
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    Default How close is the Polish language to Czech/Slovak?

    If a Polish person went to Czech or Slovakia and spoke Polish, would the locals be able to understand and respond? What are the similarities/differences? And, also, are the Czech and Slovak languages mutually intelligible? Kind regards. I look forward to hearing your insightful and detailed responses. Thank you.

  2. #2
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    i speak czech. czech-slovak is very close. like a dialect, no problem to understand. when i hear polish, i have problem, but when someone speaks slowly, i am able to understand. or ordinary situations, such as when the bus goes or in the shop, no problem to get what i want to.

  3. #3
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    Default Cz-pl

    Originally being from North Moravia (north-east part of the country) I do understand Polish fully. In that region, you are exposed to polish tv channels, tourists etc.; event the Czech dialect uses lots of words from Polish language, also the accent is kind of similar.

    To a Czech person, Polish sounds funny and vice versa. Polish people say..Czech language sounds like a baby talk

    in a written form .....Czech language uses hček (hook ˇ) to obtain the same sound in Polish....cz=č, sz= etc. Polish language doesn't use letters - V (W instead) and H (G instead)..unless used in foreign words.... and other diferrences..

    But the truth is, people living away from the polish border ... might catch a word now and then but in general.... don't understand Polish

  4. #4
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    I have studied and speak some Polish but find visits to Prague hard going. So, my rough guide to the similarities and differences runs as follows. Words to do with royalty, nobility and castles tend to differ - different kingdoms. Words to do with common everyday things tend to coincide - to read, to buy, to remember, to love, to understand,,,, breakfast, bread, bird, help, day, information, apothecary ,,,, here, there,,,, - common Slavic bedrock heritage. Ditto prepositions and conjunctions. Yes words differ - ano versus tak. No words differ with un-nasalized ne in Czech versus nasalized nie in Polish. Listen to ne rozumen Czech versus nie rozumien Polish I do not understand and you have the difference in sound and speed. Also Czech appears to have a stronger German heritage e.g. strch Czech and strichen German to push, put. Hope this helps.

    I like the Polish use of za to form a continuous tense e.g. zakochana Eva , forever beloved Eva versus kochana Eva, beloved Eva. Not sure if Czech does the same. And the formation of the future tense seems to differ too, via the future form of byc to be in Polish.
    Last edited by peglegpete; 06-05-2014 at 05:48 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default more Polish-Czech differences

    Also, Polish seems to often use the polite third person form of address e.g. Pan/Panyi zna ... Sir/Madam knows, that is You polite know. Instead, Czech seems to prefer the second person form of address e.g. znate you know.



    Quote Originally Posted by peglegpete View Post
    I have studied and speak some Polish but find visits to Prague hard going. So, my rough guide to the similarities and differences runs as follows. Words to do with royalty, nobility and castles tend to differ - different kingdoms. Words to do with common everyday things tend to coincide - to read, to buy, to remember, to love, to understand,,,, breakfast, bread, bird, help, day, information, apothecary ,,,, here, there,,,, - common Slavic bedrock heritage. Ditto prepositions and conjunctions. Yes words differ - ano versus tak. No words differ with un-nasalized ne in Czech versus nasalized nie in Polish. Listen to ne rozumen Czech versus nie rozumien Polish I do not understand and you have the difference in sound and speed. Also Czech appears to have a stronger German heritage e.g. strch Czech and strichen German to push, put. Hope this helps.

    I like the Polish use of za to form a continuous tense e.g. zakochana Eva , forever beloved Eva versus kochana Eva, beloved Eva. Not sure if Czech does the same. And the formation of the future tense seems to differ too, via the future form of byc to be in Polish.

  6. #6
    Senior Member bandziol20's Avatar
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    Slovak is easier to grasp for Polish people, since in Czech there occured some specific changes.
    BTW,
    zakochana Ewa in Polish means 'Eve that is fallen in love',
    kochana Ewa means 'Eve that is loved, i.e. beloved Eve, dear Eve'

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