Polish is the hardest language to learn

Polish – the hardest language to learn in the world

What is the hardest language to learn for English Speakers? Take a guess; it is not Chinese or Japanese. It is Polish. Polish has seven cases and Polish grammar has more exception than rules. German for example has four cases all which are logical, seem to have no pattern or rules; you have to learn the entire language. Asia languages usually do not have cases, or at least like that.

Look at Mr. Wise Old Owl get stumped the Polish language.

Polish – hardest language pronunciation

The Pronunciation is eons harder than Asia language as it usually has long tong twisting consonants. For example a Polish sentence might look like this:

  • W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie i Szczebrzeszyn z tego słynie.
  • Wyindywidualizowaliśmy się z rozentuzjazmowanego tłumu.

Further Polish people rarely hear foreign speak their language and with no accent or regional variation than pronunciation must be exact or they will have no idea what you are talking about.

So the next time you have heard someone has learned Polish have some respect. Polish is the hardest language to learn. But the truth is I doubt you will hear a native English Speaker, speak Polish beyond a few phrases. Can it be learned? Yes you can How to learn a language like I did. People do, it just takes humility.

Here is my argument that dispels the myth of Asian or other languages the most difficult

The Polish language has a Latin Alphabet, but the free ride stops there. Just how hard is Polish to speak? Well consider this, I have studied Polish most of my life, my parents speak Polish and I lived in Poland for about a decade and my wife is Polish, I have citizenship. Oh and some more, I have a passion for learning and even a nack, yet I would not say I speak the Polish language anything close to perfect. Here is how to a friend of mine learned the hardest language in the world. If I were to study French, Spanish or even Chinese I think I would gain a command of the spoken language that would surpass my ability in Polish perhaps in months. Norman Davies a lifelong champion of Poland has made a similar comments. It is not just the crazy grammar, or pronunciation, it is that the people who use it are so soft-spoken.

  • Many people will argue that other languages are more difficult based on some official textbook understanding of linguistics. Hogwash,  they ignore the most vital component in this ranking formula, that is the culture where it is spoken. For me it an unbelievable oversight. They perpetuate a paradigm of lies based on skewed weights and measures.

American English vs Polish – the way people speak determines how accessible a language is to being absorbed

Here is a concrete example. If you have ever heard some American coming from a club chances are you heard their rounded American English vocalized all the way from down the street, and that would be the girls, mind you. In contrast Slavic people, maybe because of their experience with communism like to stay in the shadows and conversations are almost in whispers. Or perhaps they are just more modest and there is not such a premium placed on self-assertion. It is very refreshing to be in a group and everyone is not trying to impress the other.

  • A linguistic group’s social conventions regarding openness, receptiveness and how people communicate with each other and foreigners, is the most important aspects of language learning. It is eons more important than grammar or the script they use.

Consider this metaphor, it is like comparing a group of friends inviting and welcoming vs an elitist closed club that has little conversation. This is only a metaphor or analogy to convey a point.  Where would you learn more? Similarly it is easy to go to the USA or converse with people in English as the English speaking culture is extroverted. That alone makes it a breeze to learn.

In contrast Slavic countries are good people but there is not a lot of boisterous openness. If you try to speak their language they will switch to English. It is just the culture or laugh and switch to English.

If you take a class in the language it is geared toward grammar rules and lessons. This is what they were taught in a post communist Eastern European classical education with a focus on form, than practicality.

It is the culture’s attitude, even is subconscious that determines if a language is child’s play or arduous. Polish are polite and kind but they are not even aware how introverted the culture is, which makes a formidable hurdle for your Broca’s and Wernicke’s area.

Again not that any of this is wrong or bad, it is just an obstacle that many people do not calculate when they are drawing up a list of the hardest languages in the world.

This is just one aspect of one single word in Polish, there were not enough interactions to place on the tree. Can you imagine how your brain would grow with an education in this language.

What about pronunciation?

When it comes to pronunciation, I remember when I first started to study Polish, my own family, who understood the context could not make out what I was saying. They were use to me still could not understand me. The Polish ear is not accustom to foreigners speaking their languages so they reject any sound that is not precisely native. This was not the case when I attempted to speak other languages like French, Spanish, Chinese with strangers. Basically when you try to communicate with a Pole and your pronunciation is off by an increment, you will be shut down. Therefore, pronunciation is interdependent on the cultural aspect of language.

Grammar seven cases and uncountable exceptions

Grammar in Polish is hard but what makes it harder is similar to the above, if your grammar is less than exact you get a wall. It is less so than with pronunciation, but think about how many foreigners speak English poorly and no one bats an eye.  Well in Poland you miss a case than you get a smirk. They are just not use to foreigners speaking Polish.

Again this is not a criticism of the culture at all, I love the people and country, it is just all the world does not interact like Americans do with linguistic, flexibility, extraversion and assimilation.

Lechitic languages  or Western Slavic languages are universally laborious because of the grammar, but have had many friends to learned it and it is worth the effort.  If you can speak on your brain is opened up to new experiences and you would be part of that inner circle, plus there are many beautiful girls in Eastern Europe to connect with, I am just being honest.

Author: Mark Biernat

I live in with family between two worlds, US and Europe where I create tools for language learning. If you found my site you probability share my passion to be a life long learner. Please explore my site and comment.

150 thoughts on “Polish is the hardest language to learn”

  1. “I am strong” would be “Jestem silny”

    And about the article, I agree with:

    – Polish problems with orthography (which is not hard at all, but many Polish do plenty of mistakes when they write)

    – problems with cases – for example: Zagramy mecz? (Will we play a match?) is often changed to “Zagramy mecza?”. In Polish, there are two groups of masculine nouns: żywotne (living) and nieżywotne (unliving). Living are animals and people and their forth case – Accusativus (pl. Biernik) is different than the first case – mianownik. “Mecz” (match) is unliving, and its biernik is like its mianownik. If something is not clear – write to me.

    -problems with certain words. For example a group of less educated people say “poszłem” (I went). A correct word is “poszedłem”. If you say “poszłem” you will be thought to be stupid.

    Luckily, I don’t have problems like these three above. I don’t agree that if a foreigner will use wrong accentuation, a Polish won’t understand him. A standard accentuation is the second syllable from the end. Word “Błyskawica” (Lightning) is pronounced “błyskaWIca” (Bwee-skah-VEE-tsah). Simple. If you accent wrong, it will just sound odd, it won’t be misunderstood.

    I also don’t agree that there are more exceptions than rules. For example every regular -ać ended verb’s conjugation is:


    Regular ones are for example: Kochać (to love), wąchać (to sniff), srać (to ), polać (to pour), grać (to paly), kasłać (to cough) and so on. The only exception that I found is spać (to sleep): spię, śpisz, śpi, śpimy, śpicie, śpią.

  2. grać is – “to play” you are right.

    Greg:- Quite good, but:
    Ja wiem ze Polski alfabet uzywa kilka innych literek, ale ja mam angielska klawiature…nie chcialem tracic czasu. Chodzi mi o to, ze mam nie zle pojecie polskiej gramatyki.
    It would rather be (Without Polish letters of course):

    Ja wiem ze Polski alfabet ma kilka innych literek, ale ja mam angielska klawiature… nie chcialem tracic czasu. Chodzi mi o to, ze mam niezle pojecie o polskiej gramatyce.

    Polish is not that hard to learn.

  3. Also consider these aspects of the using Polish. “Kasłać” is irregular: kaszlę, kaszlesz, kaszle, kaszlemy, kaszlecie, kaszlą

  4. thanks michal!
    i’ve heard that is was spelled silna or silne instead of silny.
    also, is have faith mieć wiarę .
    is that correct?
    i’m interested because i am 1/4 polish and am looking to get a tattoo.

  5. Polish is a beautiful language to learn, but if you have to have determination and persistence to learn it. I have learned Polish as an adult even though I am not perfect.

    Note how these adjectives agree with the noun, and this is only one case, there are seven cases in Polish. And a case can change in mid sentence.
    silna – fem., e.g. “silna kobieta” – “a strong woman”
    silne – neuter, e.g. “silne dziecko” – “a strong child”
    silny – masc., e.g. “silny mężczyzna” – “a strong man”

    Another example of how languages are different even though the words are the same are as follows.
    “to have faith” would rather be “wierzyć” (exactly “to believe”).
    But if you say this in English “I believe”, I think that it won’t be the same as “I am a Christian”. Which means thatyou mean that you believe in God, than you can say “wierzę w Boga”. Bóg – God.
    This is a subtle difference.
    Or “I believe that you will pass the exam” – “Wierzę, że zdasz egzamin”.
    Me personally I believe Polish is a hard language to learn but it is worth it.

  6. the is not hard but much is hard from learn ,i think that ramonia language hard to speaking is because i like it don’t…and the áccenciations is the not easy to learn from heart and you would see the yourself to.

  7. Kasztany z was i pajace. Macie gowniane pojecie o polskim. Kolesie z mojego kraju – nie nawijac tym pierdolom zadufanym co tu wyklepalem. Zaden rozpierdziany slownik im nie pomoze. Niech mnie w rowa cmokna bazyle. W moim pieknym jezyku jest wiecej zajebanych okreslen na cofanie bulgara, niz pozycji w repertuarze indyjskiego fakira. Peace wiggaz.

  8. Learning languages is entirely subjective and the success or failure of grasping an adequate knowledge of any language is based on entirely personal motivations.

    There is no way to quantify and measure the difficulty of a language.

  9. Although I am native in Polish I have to admit I had difficulties with understanding slang you write in. Could you please explain what do you mean by “cofanie bulgara” and what kind of poses from “repertoire of Hindu fakir” did you have on your mind?


  10. Hi. I am from Poland. I can speek polish. I translate it. Cześć. Jestem z Polski. Umiem mówić po polsku. If you wont to learn this language you can.

  11. Well, from my perspective of slovak native speaker, I can tell you without hesitation that Polish, Slovak, Czech, Russian are all on the same difficulty level. Most of the time it is the strange-looking polish script which scares those who are new to the language. All these languages have 7 cases, perfective and imperfective aspect of verbs, 3 genders and so on and so forth. Frankly speaking, I do not get why there is this groundless fear of polish language. Every polish native speaker tends to think that polish is immensely difficult while english is a breeze. Well, I happened to live in the UK for awhile, worked with many Poles out there but their level of english was usually very poor, they had terrible accent and after living in an english speaking environment for a couple of years still struggled with the language. IMHO, english is just as difficult as polish, only you guys don´t know about it yet.

  12. No doubt, Polish language is hard to learn, but as I read your article, you are writing about the pronounciation, and not about grammer. Because Polish is an indo-european language, that means it has a lot of similarities with other european languages, like English, French, Italien, German, not to mention other Slavic languages. But Hungarian is completely different. It absolutely differs from these european languages and although the pronounciation may be easy(er), the grammer is extremely hard. That is why we can learn western languages very hard, and why foreigners can’t learn Hungarian. If you check a Hungarian web page, you can easily check this. Or check a web dictionary. So I don’t say that Hungarian is the hardest language of the world, but – talking about its grammer – a lot harder than Polish.

  13. I’d say impossible to give a definitive answer as it is all relative to teh language you already know. If your native language is Mandarin chinese then it follows that learning another asiatic language will be easier than learning an indo-european language and vice versa.

    All languages have their quirks and oddities, 3rd person in English, the lack of perfect and continuous tenses in Hungarian, noun/verb conjugations in German and masculine/feminine usage in French as just a few examples.

    There is also the fact that it is easier for some people to learn a language than others just as maths comes easier to some than others. For most people learning a language is a matter of neccesity rather than desire and as such the choice of which to learn is decided for them so Americans tend to learn Spanish, Australians learn Mandarin and British people expect everyone else to speak English

  14. not only is polish the hardest language to pronounce, but to write as well. i am native english but started learning polish when i was 3 years old so grammar comes almost naturally to me .i can guarantee you that if you start learning english as an adult ( and you’re english yourself) , you won’t ever master polish grammar 100% perfectly, even most poles don’t know it perfectly.

    About polish isnt the hardest language, look at this
    There about 28 forms of the word for number “two” in polish:

    dwa, dwaj, dwie, dwoje, dwóch, dwóm, dwom, dwu, dwoma, dwiema, dwojga, dwojgu, dwojg?, dwójka, dwójku, dwójki, dwójce, dwójkiem, dwójko, dwójgo dwojgiem, drugi, druga, drugie, drugiemu, drugiej, drugiego, drugim, drugą

    ?the question marks mean the website doesnt recognize the symbols

  15. o tak mój język jest bardzo trudny 😉

  16. The Korean terms “Kun-Ahbeoji” or “Mat-Ahbeoji” (both literally meaning “Big Father”) is only reserved for one’s father’s eldest brother.

    Say, someone’s father were the third of 5 brothers… They’d call their father’s eldest brother either one of the abovementioned terms, the second eldest “Dooljjae-Ahbeoji” (meaning “Second Father”), the younger brother “Netjjae-Ahbeoji” (meaning “Fourth Father”, notice how third is being skipped here since their father is the third son), and the youngest brother “Maknae-Ahbeoji” or “Qu’t-Ahbeoji” (meaning “Youngest Father”).

    If their father’s two younger brothers are unmarried, it’s also acceptable to call them “Sam-Chon” or “Ahjae”. But, they should NEVER call them by either of these two terms once they are married.

  17. Just wondering… does Polish have a lot of dialects within its own language, possibly ones that take some time even for standard Polish speakers to learn or understand?

  18. slovak
    silná – “silná žena” – “strong woman”
    silné – “silné ďieťa” – “strong child”
    silný – “silný muž” – “strong man”
    silní – “silní ľuďia” – “strong (more) people”

    polish, czech and slovak language are very similar, what do you think?

  19. eng.Speak – pol.kutas
    eng.drink – pol.jebac
    eng.sit down – pol. wydymaj dupsko

  20. I have lived with my polish girlfriend and have been to poland several times and I can barely speak a few sentences. mostly easy stuff.

    Bigos, serek wiesky, chleb, zupa orgokowa.

    My most commonly used phrase while in poland is nie rozumia lol or pan(i) rozumie po angielsku?

    but i do say czesch, dobranoc, dziekuje, dowidzenia

    also kocham cie, skarbie, kochana.

    Mostly just simple words and phrases but she says my pronounciation is perfect =)

  21. I am an American married to a polish girl 5 years now and have visited PL many times and I do find the language very fluid and pleasing to listen to. I have been able to learn many words but only a few phrases. The problem for me is that there are so many variations of the nouns. If I pronounce something only slightly different they have no idea what I said.

    1. I have a website polishgrammar.com if you want to learn Polish. Its for free. But not only nouns change in Polish, but every word, verbs, pronouns, numbers etc. It is not only the hardest language to learn, but a crazy, chaotic language. However, for me Polish sounds beautiful and it is a very poetic language with a lot of flexibility. You can learn this language, it just takes more time and as a foreigner you do not need to be perfect with the grammar. Just speak it is good enough at first. I think I am pretty good with Polish but I still make mistakes with noun cases.

  22. Michael4010:
    You think it’s funny? Would it be funny for you if you said it, for example, to your boss if you worked in Poland?
    The polish words he used are very vulgar.

    Drina Sobieska:
    Yes, there are dialects. There’s a little change in gramatic, the bigger problem is that people use completely different words and sometimes also pronunciation.

    About polish language:
    next thing i think could be hard is that there are some verbs, which don’t actually have f.eg. present tense. If you want to use present (and usually also continous) tense, you have to usu another, similar but still another word. F. eg.:
    przegrywać – infinitive for “to lose” (a game) used for present and all continous tenses (also past and future)
    przegrać – infinitive for “to lose” used for past tense and future tense

    We use it, because we don’t actually have continous tense – using the right word makes clear for us, what you wanted to say. We divide verbs on two groups: done (“dokonane”) and undone (“niedokonane”).

    And there are other strange things…

    PS: You think polish is nice to hear? Thanks, I used to think it must seem ugly for foreigner 🙂

    1. I am a foreigner, well kind of and Polish sounds like to me very beautiful. It is like nature sounds, soft and a lot of sz, cz, ś, ć, ch, h, rz, ż, ź and other strange sounds that to my ear sound like nature sounds. Like leaves in the fall or wind through a field in the Summer.
      I think Polish people are very connected to nature in and the language reflects it.
      Now German does not sound nice at all. And Italian which many people like, sounds like people are yelling at each other (but nice). French it sounds like they are talking though their nose. Swedish is ok, kind of musical.
      Polish is so unique sounding. This is why Poles generally are good with English as their language is so rich in sounds that they can replicate foreign languages of almost any kind.

      Polish sounds very beautiful and rich to a foreign ear. I think it is the best language to learn.

  23. My native tongue is filipino, but I can speak English quite well. I find russian frustratingly harder. For weeks I couldn’t get through the declinations, short-form adjectives, verb conjugations ONLY because of the damn changes in stress-accent. However with polish, despite the fact that it has more rules and exceptions; i find it easier because – almost everthing is pronounced in the penultimate syllable. I’m now able to form complex sentences, including those utilising conditional aspects; but takes me about 5-15 seconds (that’s after a month of studying with me working mon,wed,fri,…. But when I try going back to learning russian, all those stress-changes make everything so damn hard even though the grammar is less complicated…i’d think russian is harder….or maybe because i’m much better in declinations than stress-accents…btw does anyone know a good site (Free.), that can help me more on imperfective and perfective verb forms. It’s my greatness weakness since i have to sometimes argue in my mind which form to use, testing it, and it takes up the most time when i’m mentally building a sentence to speak aloud?

  24. Hi, I am from Poland and I learn English and Germany. I’m 14.

    Uczę się tych języków od około 5 lat i sądzę że są łatwe. A Polski czy ja wiem czy najtrudniejszy język?
    Ja bym obstawiała ze właśnie Chiński ale jednak nie. Jak dla mnie Polski to najpiękniejszy język;)

    1. Kinga, I am impressed you are 14 and speak or at least are learning three languages.

      Many people say Asian languages are hard, because they are so foreign looking. But they are not. I know this child who is part Korean and part Polish. The child lives in Poland and is exposed to Polish 65% more. But prefers Korean because the pronunciation is and structure is easier for the child. In fact the father travels so much that his exposure to Korean is limited but the mother says he things Korean is easier. Why would a child be partial. Polish is much harder than the Asian languages.

  25. Well… I don’t think that Polish language is hardest to learn(I think that probably beacause i’m from poland, but whatever). Theperson, i don’t agree with you English is probably easiest launguage to learn, a lot of people are speaking in english in XXI century. Actually I’m learning speaking in english, German and italian. From these German is hardest… for example in speaking, look you need to have nice accent to speak in this launguage, and from my own experience i know that most of people in this country are lazy in case of teaching english… That’s I wanted to say.

  26. My Girl friend is from Poland and I too face lot of problems as far as Language is concerned. She always tries to teach me but I hardly got anything till now. I think its very different. in fact speaking requires a better and refined tongue which you can only have if you are from Poland. I am from India and know 4-5 national languages from India but learning Polish is the hardest time, I have been. Anyhow, Love has no language which I always tell her whenever I stuck somewhere.

    1. Try to learn vocabulary in the nominative case, rather than Polish grammar. Poles often do not understand truly how hard their language is because they are native speakers.
      Try to be fearless and speak Polish even if people laugh. Learn words not phrases at first as it is too hard to learn a whole Polish phrase.

  27. “Well, I happened to live in the UK for awhile, worked with many Poles out there but their level of english was usually very poor”

    Mark, perhaps you worked with poorly educated people (the largest part of Polish emigrees to the UK) who did not care to master the language or they were unable to grasp the intricacies of the english grammar. Those who want, do learn.

    1. I think the Polish people speak English very well. In fact, I think Poles can replicate the sounds of the English language very well as their language is very complex. Poles are very educated also. The quote above is not from me.

  28. No, Polish people DON’T speak English very well. Alright, there are some exceptions, but there’s more people which don’t know what is it I am, You are etc. I’m from Poland, i’m 13 and I think that there is too little lessons of English (in schools, of course). You can see it in every touristic country. There are some peoples which cannot speak english very weak or not at all. Our language isn’t so easy – i won’t tell about grama, because it’s totally another topic to talk about. You’re the best if you understand what I wrote – but now you see how english looks in Poland.

    1. Yes if you are from Poland of course you will say that. Polish people do not know their own abilities. 🙂 I am an English native speaker and teach English. I also live in Poland and speak Polish. Believe me, Polish people speak English very well. You do not think so as the education system in Poland is really intimidating. But how many people who are 13 could write a post like you on an foreign language website. And Polish is a totally different language than English. English and German or Danish are close, but Polish – wow – you speak English well, believe me.

  29. polski jest trudny do nauki, ale wymowa jest łatwiejsza niż w angielskim bo tu się wszystko wymawia tak jak się pisze dla innych trudno się wymawia ,,ą” albo ,,ę” a dla nas Polaków trudno wymówić tak jak Anglicy ,,r” jest takie niewyraźne a w angielskim zupełnie inaczej się pisze a inaczej wymawia ja współczuję tamtejszym dyslektykom w ortografii bo pewnie mają jeszcze trudniej niż Polacy i czasów w angielskim jest w cholerę dużo u nas są tylko 3 przeszły, teraźniejszy i przyszły. Kłopoty są na pewno największe z przypadkami, mamy ich 6 plus wołacz, ale to się w sumie nie liczy, z pewnością nasz język jest jednym z najtrudniejszych, ale czy ja wiem…

  30. Polish is difficult to learn, but the pronunciation is easier than in English because here everything is pronounced just like to write for other hard to pronounce, “A” or “E” and for us Poles, it is difficult to pronounce like Englishmen, r ‘is Such vague and in English to write differently and pronounced differently I feel sorry for the local spelling of dyslexic because I probably have a harder time than the Poles and the English is a hell lot of us are only three past, present and future. Trouble is certainly the largest of the cases, we have 6 plus vocative, but this total does not count, surely our language is one of the most difficult, but I do not know …
    sorry for the errors in google translating because I did not want so much to explain at the top is the same but in Polish

  31. Hi 🙂 I am polish but i live in England so i can told you smomething. Polish labguage is not really hard but is not too easy. I speaking an english and polish so i know it 🙂

    Pozdrawiam wszystkich Polaków z zagranicy !

  32. dobra wyluzujcie polski nie jest taki trudny 😀

    no, może trochę 😉

  33. Actually, the hardest language is Chinese and English, and they are universal…

    But if you take universal languages off, and ancient languages off, then it’s probably European…

    I speak English Natively, and I’m having a horrid time learning Polish, but it’s not as hard for me due to my father and grandmother speaking Polish all the time, but my Father still speaks English most of the time, he speaks Polish when my Grandmother and Grand Aunt are over…

    1. Chinese had no grammar really and its tones are no comparison to Polish pronunciation. Think about how hard it is to learn Polish. I am learning Polish and Chinese and Polish is much harder.

  34. if wrong, it’s because I write with translator

    I’m Polish and I is not hard to speak in Polish but it is difficult in English. every person has an accent, those who were born in Poland have a Polish accent, those who were born in Britain are English accent. Polish language has a lot of difficult things to notice, for example “table with broken legs.”

  35. This is the Polish alphabet: A Ą B C Ć D E Ę F G H I J K L Ł M N Ń O Ó P R S Ś T U W Y Z Ź Ż

  36. My parents left Poland in the 80’s and moved to the Netherlands. I was thus not born in Poland myself, but fortunately my parents spoke Polish at home so I was able to learn the basics. I was raised in a bi-lingual environment, but I must admit that while I am quite fluent in Polish (Polish people are generally, though not always, surprised when I tell them I’m not really a native speaker), I often end up making silly grammatical mistakes (including some of the mistakes posted in the comments) and it takes me at least four times as long to write a sentence in Polish than in English or Dutch.

    In high school I was confronted with learning German, French, Spanish, English, Latin and Ancient Greek. In my free time I also studied Japanese for several years. I can safely say that Polish is far more difficult than any other language I have attempted to master; Japanese in particular is surprisingly easy. It may seem like a daunting task at first – memorising hundreds if not thousands of different characters, but it is actually not that difficult. I remember knowing (that is, recognising and being able to write) roughly 600 of those seemingly complex characters before I stopped taking lessons. Japanese uses a system of particles as a kind of substitute for cases. Putting “Ha” or “Ga” after a word indicates that it is the subject, whereas the suffix “O” indicates that it’s the object. The Japanese language does not make a distinction between different genders nor does it have any specific form for plural words. If you’d write the sentence “I’m going to school” it would generally look exactly the same as the sentence “We’re going to school” (“Gakkoo ni ikimasu” [Gakkoo = school; ni = to (suffix); ikimasu = to go). Essentially, the only thing that makes Japanese remotely difficult is the fact that hardly any of the words sound similar to words in European languages.

    Polish, on the other hand, makes use of multiple cases, three different genders, and many seemingly unpronounceable sounds (such as “cz”, “sz” and many others). I have attempted to teach my girlfriend some Polish, but I don’t even know where to start! 🙂

    1. Brilliant comment, Polish is hard not only to learn but to use. When writing an e-mail or anything in the Polish language, it take me longer to think how to write it. In English I just write.
      Further, Poles are more sensitive slight errors while in English you can be more flexible.

  37. “Poles are more sensitive slight errors while in English you can be more flexible.” – Yes, that’s the major problem people have with learning Polish in my opinion.

    I’m from Poland, learning English for like… 5 years and used to learn German for 2 years (though I don’t speak it at all, hehe, barely understand a thing) and last summer I got visited by a friend from Germany – he had Polish roots so was speaking… trying to speak Polish all the time.

    Well, my parents couldn’t understand a single longer sentence he told.
    You see, unless you speak with person who catches languages quickly you will have a lot of problems with communicating using full sentences. Sometimes even a single error can make people totally stuck in getting what you are trying to say to them.

    That’s why I guess people sometimes feel discouraged to speak more fluently in Polish, and all they use are single words.
    Don’t be, It’s better to try and come out as a fool but actually to learn something of it than not to try ever and keep using single words.

    What I like in Polish though is that there are so many various ways to say a single thing. It might be horror to learn but it gives you very much of a free hand in expressing emotions, writing poetry, prose, or even simplest letter.
    You can make an involving story and pass on the expressions much more easily in Polish than you do in English IMO. The choice of words can pass on whatever you are mad or calm in a first sentence, something that’s much harder in English.

  38. “I also don’t agree that there are more exceptions than rules. For example every regular -ać ended verb’s conjugation is:


    Regular ones are for example: Kochać (to love), wąchać (to sniff), srać (to ), polać (to pour), grać (to paly), kasłać (to cough) and so on. The only exception that I found is spać (to sleep): spię, śpisz, śpi, śpimy, śpicie, śpią.”

    I can’t agree with this. There are a lot of verbs that aren’t regular, for example: jechać (to drive), czarować (to charm), malować (to draw), rysować (to paint), obserwować (to observe), rozkazywać (to commands), wypatrywać etc.

    And what about:
    jechać (to drive)

    And there are also some verbs with the others ends:
    -eść, ex: nieść (to carry) (niosę, niesiesz, niesie…)
    -ić or -yć ex: żyć (to live) , pić (to live) (żyję, żyjesz, żyje…)
    -aść, ex: kraść (to stole) (kradnę, kradniesz, kradnie…)
    -ać, ex: brać (to take)(biorę, bierzesz, bierze)
    -eć, ex: chcieć (to want) (chcę, chesz, chce)
    and I think there are the others…
    In each of this group thera are also totally irregular verbs- sometimes we change also somme lettes that aren’t in the end of the words.
    And it’s only about the verbs on the present.

  39. Hello, well first of all I’m Spanish and I’m learning three languages at the moment (English, French and German), I was born bilingual because I speak Catalan (which is a kind of a dialect elder than Spanish), and Spanish.
    By the way German it’s the hardest language that I have ever learnt (declinations, vocabulary…) and all that stuff, (it’s really sick.)
    So when I was aware that Polish had 7 genres I was amazed, I must say congratulations to the Polish people either to the people that is learning it!.

  40. I am a native English speaker, I have been learning Russian since I was 11, but considering I was taught it at an English high school, I didn’t really learn much until i was about 16, from then on I learnt an enormous amount. I am studying it at University now. As well as that, I also started studying Polish at university and, maybe because its grammar and case endings are similar to Russian, I am having almost no problems in learning Polish. However, for me the main problem (considering I have only been learning Polish for 5 months, once a week in the evening) is that my pronunciation isn’t quite perfect. However my ability to understand written Polish is (not trying to sound extremely egotistical, sorry) vastly superior to that of my classmates. My vocabulary is greater than that of the people who are in my class (this is exacerbated by the fact that i am currently on a 3rd yr course, and I am only a first year student, I was put into this class after the teachers decided their classes weren’t challenging enough for me). The hardest thing for me is spoken Polish, but I am sure simple repetition and practice will solve that problem.

  41. There’s nothin strange that 14 year girl llearns in Poland these languages. For example at school I have to learn too English and German. Aslo I learn on my own Spanish, Japanese and Esperanto. And it’s true Polish is the hardest language in the world. I’m 15 and I make mistakes when I talk with somebody sometimes. But it’s normal. Polak(Polish guy) zrozumie Polaka

  42. I am Polish native speaker and I know that polish may be difficult for foreigners. I don`t agree that polish people speak can`t speak English. More and more people develop their language skills and communicte better in English. Polish education system is constructed in a way that allows children to start learning English from the age of 7. It`s fantastic in my opinion. Talking about pronunciation- Everything depends on the articulation of sounds in every language. Sometimes it`s hard to pronunce the word properly because of different articulation in your mother tongue. But you can learn it easily. I`m very happy to see that foreigners want to learn Polish. Good luck guys. Believe me, if you want to learn it- you will.
    And my next target is to learn Spanish.

  43. Talk about simplicity of Polish language. If anybody finds himself good at speaking this language, try talkin to different people. It’s true that Polish changes reginally, but everybody should be aware that this language changes not only depending on region, but even music people listen. Alright. I know that sounds familiar, but it is different, than for example english. People listening to rap and hip-hop probably would be ununderstandable. It’s just about flexibility AND that in fact really many words have much more meaning than it seems from vocabulary. What’s more people create their own words. Some example?
    ‘wystrzelbić’ – wow, a verb from ‘strzelba’ – ‘gun’, and guess what does it mean. To shoot somebody? sorry, miss. it means ‘to hit someone’
    and something extra – words which mean ‘hit’
    uderzyć, walnąć, bachnąć, chlasnąć, gruchnąć, łupnąć, przydzwonić, przyfasolić, przyłożyć, puknąć, razić, rąbnąć, zasunąć, zdzielić, huknąć, palnąć, trzasnąć, uderzyć, walnąć, dojechać, grzmotnąć, łomotnąć, palnąć, przykrochmalić, przyładować, przymalować, przysolić, przysunąć, rypnąć, sieknąć, świsnąć, trzepnąć, wyrżnąć
    not enough? there are also vulgar words for that
    I could also write down combinations of words, which has this meaning, but there are so many, that i don’t have enough willpower.
    and hitting isn’t the only word to have this much counterparts in Polish.
    We, Poles have the most sophisticated vular system.

    1. Grzegorz Brzęrzyszczykiewicz uwielbiam ten moment w filmie. Mam podwójne imię i nazwisko za granicą muszę pisać bądź literować i nawet w Polsce jeszcze mi się nie zdarzyło, żeby ktoś nie powiedział “że jak proszę?”

  44. Don’t forgot “old Polish”, that some people still are using (just some words, but still) Like “Srogo” “Sążnie” “Chyżo” “Zasite” my grandma is still talking in this, sometimes I can’ t understand her. Polish is very difficult, in Chinese difficult are only letters. I learn 5 languages, and for me polish sounds the best, is pretty( not like a german :p) In Polish is very important accent too. I’ m from podlasie, and we tak here in białostocki akcent, so it’ s not this same like kaszubski or śląski czy nawet warrszawski xD
    For me English is easy, but still i have to work with it.
    Bywajcie zdrowi i odwagę swą powielajcie, jako i męstwu swemu ustępku nie dawajcie… Cośbyś czynił człowiecze na swej drodze, niechaj Pan ma cię w swej opiece. Nie lękaj się głosić słów owych bliskim swym! Żegnam i pozdrawiam, Adrian z Białegostoku

  45. Hello, I’m a native English person and I am currently learning Polish. You said in your post that ‘[T]he truth is I doubt you will hear a native English Speaker, speak Polish beyond a few phrases’. For everyone’s information, I saw that and laughed, although I agree with this statement, I am myself fluent in Polish. I have no Polish heritage whatsoever, so learning it was a new experience for me. Saying that though I may just be an exception. I am 19 years old, and only started learning Polish a year ago. (For those that now don’t believe I am fluent I meet languages very quickly, plus I talk with my Polish friends only in Polish, read Polish newspapers, and even watch Polish films)

    Tak, dla tych chcących myśleć, że cudzoziemcy nie mogą nauczyć się polskiego jak język obcy, teraz wiecie, że nie macie racji. Nawet choć znam język polski, mam parę błędów z gramatyką od czasu do czasu, bo zacząłem się uczyć polskiego dopiero w zeszłym roku!!

    Pozdrawiam serdecznie

    Anglik =]

  46. Polish language is beutiful, this song is ancient and mysterious.

  47. Hey, what you’re writing about is not a matter of pronounciation but of reading and understanding polish dyphtongs (complex vowels) Vowels themselves are not hard to speak. Accent is usually set on the syllable second from the last. This and rustling sound of vowels make the language sound completely different from russian or czech. Sometimes it sounds a bit like french to me.

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