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MartaSaturday 21st of May 2005 04:53:33 PM
Polish alphabet - I prepared Polish alphabet for my friend and so I thought it may be useful also for others. Here it is:


Scheme: letter - English equivalent - English example - Polish example (English translation of an example)

A a -a - but,cut - kara (punishment), auto (car)
Ą ą - no English equivalent - ---- - mąka (flour), gąbka (sponge) - if you know any French: there's a similar sound 'on' like in 'quand' (when in French); it's a nasal sound
B b - b - but, bucket - but (shoe), bóg (god)
C c - ts - tse-tse - co (what), moc (power)
Ć ć - no English equivalent - ---- - cześć (hi), chcieć (to want) - also when there's 'ci' we read it 'ć' - cisza (silence), ciepły (warm); it's a very soft sound
D d - d - door, wood - drzwi (door), moda (fashion)
E e - e - said, well - ekran (screen), rzeka (river)
Ę ę - no equivalent - ----- - chęć (willingness) ; similar sound to 'ą', also nasal
F f - f - flower, fist - ----- - facet (guy), formularz (application form) - often the sound ' w ' becomes devocalised and is pronunced like ' f ', e.g.: ławka (bench), owca (sheep);it happens when ' w ' is followed by voiceless consonant
G g - g - game - głos (voice), gdzie (where)
H h - h - hotel - hotel (hotel), hak (hook)
I i - i - ill, easy - igła (needle), miły (nice, describing a masculine object or person)
J j - y - way, hey - jak (how), jeśli (if), mój (my; describing a masculine object or person)
K k - c - cat,count - kot (cat), mokry (wet; describing a masculine object or person)
L l - l - little, milk - lód (ice-cream), mleko (milk)
Ł ł - w - where, why - ładny (nice,pretty; describing a masculine person or object), łokieć (elbow)
M m - m - mother, milk - mama (mum), mięso (meat)
N n - n - no, never - noga (leg), sen (dream)
Ń ń - no equivalent - ----- - koń (horse), also when there's 'ni' we pronunce it like a ' ń '; e.g.: nic (nothing), nieść (to carry), nigdy (never); very soft, nasal sound
O o - o - drop - oko (eye), woda (water)
Ó ó - u, oo - put, wood - róg (horn), łódź (boat)
P p - p - paper, people - papier (paper), Polska (Poland)
R r - r - rock, river - rok (year), rower (bicycle); it's a harder sound than Eglish one, similar to Spanish 'r'
S s - s - sock, source - sok (juice), masło (butter)
Ś ś - no equivalent - ---- - ślimak (snail), śliwka (plum); soft sound, English speakers often have problems with this one and they pronunce it 'sh' instead
T t - t - table, tennis - tak (yes), zeszyt (notebook)
U u - u,oo - book, put - uczeń (pupil), muzyka (music), it's exactly the same sound as ' ó '
W w - v - vet, very - wiadro (bucket), wakacje (vacation)
X x - this one exists only in words with foreing origin
Y y - i - this, it - my (we), wy (you,plural)
Z z - z - zebra, zoo - złoto (gold), zły (evil, decribing a masculine person or object)
Ź ź - no equivalent - ---- - źdźbło (stalk,trifle), źrebak (colt); soft sound, often mispronunced by English speakers; not very frequent in Polish
Ż ż - s - vision - żaba (frog), każdy (everyone)

Cz cz - ch - punch - czapka (cap), cześć (hi)
Ch ch - h - hotel - chłopiec (boy); the same sound as ' h '
Dz dz - no equivalent - ---- - dzwon (bell); try to pronunce d+z very quickly
Dź dź - no equivalent - ---- - dźwig (crane); a little bit similar to ' ć ' ; voiced; not very frequent; Dź followed by an I is pronounced as J in "Jeep", that's why "Dziekuje" is pronounced "JEN koo yeh"

Dż dż - dg - budget - can't think of an example
Rz rz - s - vision - morze (sea), orzeł (eagle); exactly the same sound as ' ż '
Sz sz - sh - shade - szukać (to look for), maszt (mast)

Jeśli zauważyłeś/aś błędy, to proszę daj mi znać!Dzięki!

EDIT: ' dź ' is Kamil's contribution to the alphabet:)
craig22Monday 23rd of May 2005 03:03:30 AM
Wow....! - Thanks alot for this! I don't about anyone else but it will certainly help me out! I have printed it off and stuck it to my wall :)
MartaMonday 23rd of May 2005 03:09:29 AM
- Hello Craig,
thanks for appreciation!
If you want any further help, just write what you're expecting. I'll do my best to help you:)
Karolina2005Monday 23rd of May 2005 03:40:53 PM
- Thanks for this. .It really helps my pronouncication.
MartaMonday 23rd of May 2005 10:26:25 PM
- Nie ma za co:)
I think the audio files would be useful here, unfortunately I have no idea how to add it:/
I'm glad you found it helpful!
Brain May roxFriday 27th of May 2005 10:40:56 PM
- Hi, i would love to learn Polish and if i can be of any help, i live in England and speak English
roseyMonday 30th of May 2005 07:52:50 PM
This is fab! - Thanks a million for this its so helpful! I had just posted a message looking for help with the alphabet and then I found this...:-) happy days, thanks again!!
MartaTuesday 31st of May 2005 01:25:53 AM
- Do you think all was explained properly? Do you still have any doubts? I had problems with ' ę' and ' ą ' since there are no equivalents of that in English but if you want I can present them by myself on Classroom or in some other way. Just let me know!
JorahSaturday 18th of June 2005 05:32:18 AM
Thanks! - This really helps. :D Thanks a bunch!
HanaSaturday 18th of June 2005 03:10:45 PM
Audio Files - To all of you learning Polish: the audio files are still being recorded and transformed. Stay tuned, I hope it will work at last ;)

Take care,

wasilSunday 26th of June 2005 01:29:37 AM
- with dź i would tell there isn't english equvialent in jeep we rather hear dż, than dź. :)

I would say dź is between ć and dż :)]

after all I can only say that the best think will be if you can hear native speaker doing those crazy things and saying dź for you
MartaMonday 27th of June 2005 04:42:56 PM
- [quote]Originally posted by wasil

with dź i would tell there isn't english equvialent in jeep we rather hear dż, than dź. :)

I would say dź is between ć and dż :)]

after all I can only say that the best think will be if you can hear native speaker doing those crazy things and saying dź for you[/quote]

Hmm... since after 'j' in jeep there's a vowel the sound gets softer (I think) and that was the best example. But you're right, it's still more like 'dż'.
tony123456Friday 01st of July 2005 06:53:50 AM
- hi i think it was helpful but in know have had the alfabet down and the ones that are the hardest are dzwith the accent and a and the e with the line underneath i think waht would be helpfull for some might be the (e) with the line makes the close to an (en) sound in the middle at the end of the word just (e) . the (a) with the line might make either a (on) or (om) sound,and just like (e) at the end it makes its normal sound. so at the end of a word (a) withthe line would be regular (a)! Ihope this was helpfull i am not a master yet still on my way but i think have mastered the alfabet finally!!!pa
MartaSunday 03rd of July 2005 08:56:21 PM
- Yes, if you don't have a possibility to imitate a native speaker you can say 'on' in place of ą and en in place of ę. That will be something similar. But of course it's not the same sound.