Contrasting Polish and English Lexicon - English Borrowings in Polish

  1. Semantics of English lexical borrowiongs into Polish
    • Semantic fields of English lexical borrowings in Polish
          	    Sem field   |  1937  1970  1995  |  change  |  comment
          	    Sport       |  1     1     1     |  -       | 
          	    Marine      |  2     2     7     |  \       |  !
          	    Culture     |  3     9     4     |  \/      |
          	    Economy     |  4     3     8     |  /\      |  ?
          	    Clothing    |  5     8     3     |  \/      |
          	    Food        |  6     7     5     |  \/      |
          	    Transport   |  7     5     9     |  /\      |   
          	    Sci & tech  |  8     4     6     |  /\      |  ?
          	    Agriculture |  9     11    11    |  \       |  
          	    People      |  10    6     2     |  /       |  !  
          	    Politics    |  11    10    10    |  /       |  ?

        In the above table, three middle columns correspond to the results of the studies on semantics of English loan words in Polish conducted by Koneczna (1937), Fisiak (1970) and Manczak-Wohlfeld (1995). In each of these columns, the smaller the ordinal number, the greater the number of borrowings in a given semantic field

      e.g.    in 1937 we had more English borrowings from sport than from culture, but NOT NECESSARILY 3 times more.

        In the table, the semantic classification adopted for all three studies was the one from Fisiak 1970. Since the original semantic categories in the other two studies differed from Fisiak's categories, the ordering in the first and third column are only approximate.

        In particular, if we treated different Manczak-Wohlfeld's categories for different sciences and technologies (not included in the table) as one 'science & technology' category, we would probably get the most numerous category of all.

        This claim seems to be supported by my recent study of neologies in Polish computer texts (i.e. computer magazines, web pages, etc), where approx. 1800 computer-related terms borrowed from English were attested. Compared to the total of 1700 borrowings found by Manczak-Wohlfeld, the semantic field of 'science and technology' would outnumber any other semantic field she considered.

      EXERCISE 1
      Have a look at the top and the bottom of the frequency list of 3400 new words (verified against SAM's dictionary) observed in a 1.2 mln corpus of computer texts. Check how many of these words are of English origin. Are there any differences in the number of anglicisms between the first and the second half of the list?

        It should be also noted, that Manczak-Wohlfeld did not (could not) consider vocabulary connected with European Union and NATO borrowed recently into Polish from English (opting out, opting in, accountability, pillars, quota-hopping, etc). For this reason, in a more complete (up-to-date) study, the semantic field of politics and economy would probably rank higher than here.

    • Semantic changes affecting English words borrowed into Polish
      • number and kind of meanings of the English Source (ES) and Polish Target (PT) word are the same
        e.g.    sweter, importer
      • number of senses of PT is smaller than that of ES
        e.g.    E: dealer (trader, broker) -> P: dealer (trader)
        E: shaker (drink, tool, person) -> P: shaker (drink)
      • number of senses of PT is greater than that of ES
        e.g.    E: five (tea) -> P: fajf (tea, party)
      • denotation of PT narrower than that of ES (restriction of the meaning)
        e.g.    E: cake (baked food) -> P: keks (special sort of baked food)
      • denotation of PT wider than that of ES (extension of the meaning)
        e.g.    E: jam (of any fruit except citruses) -> P: dżem (of any fruit)
  2. Morphological adaptation of English lexical borrowiongs into Polish
      • POS ('parts of speech') of English loan words in Polish
        • Frequencies of individual POS
          Among approx. 1700 borrowings from English we have (Manczak-Wohlfeld 1995:54)
              	                  POS                  | Freq.  
                                    nouns                | 94.2%
                                    verbs                |  2.7%
                                    adjectives           |  2.4%
                                    adverbs              |  0.6%
                                    exclamations         |  0.2%     
          • In general, nouns are the most frequent POS in E and in P
          • We tend to think by means of relations between nouns (?)
          • We need names for concrete things more often than for new actions or relations (?)
      1. NOUNS
        • Degree of morphological adaptation of English nouns in Polish
          • 68.8% of borrowed nouns are regularly declined in Polish, which indicated high degree of their adaptation to Polish morphological system
          • 16.6% of borrowed nouns are declined partially (e.g. they do not allow plural form, e.g. E: bush, bushes -> P: busz, *busze)
          • 9.4% are not declined
          Roughly, the proportions between the above groups are 8:2:1.
        • Category of gender in nominal borrowings
          Among approx. 1600 nouns borrowed from English we have
              	                  Noun gender          | Freq.  
              	                  masculine            | 76.5%
              	                  feminine             |  8.2%
              	                  neutral              |  5.3%
              	                  no (fixed) gender    |  0.6%
          • In Polish, masculine nouns are more frequent than nouns of any other gender (see the exact numbers in the handout from our class on morphology)
          • Masculine gender is universally dominant among the borrowings from languages that have no grammatical gender into languages that have grammatical gender
          • Majority of nominal borrowings from English ends in a consonant. In Polish the majority of masculine nouns ends in a consonant, whereas the majority of other genders ends in a vowel:
            • Polish typical masculine ending is a CONSONANT
              e.g. native 'ton' vs borrowed 'badminton'
            • Polish typical feminine ending -/a/
              e.g. native 'sosna' vs borrowed 'sekwoja'
            • Polish typical neutral endings -/i/,-/o/,-/u/
              e.g. native 'dziecko' vs 'disco'
            A similar pattern of the word ending association with grammatical gender of a given word is reflected in Polish christian names. All Polish feminine christian names (in nominative case, excluding diminutives etc) end in a vowel. Out of 590 such names, 589 end in the vowel 'a' and 1 ends in the vowel 'e' (Beatrycze, which itself is aready a borrowing). On the other hand, 90% of Polish masculine names end in a consonant, 10% in a vowel. There is no masculine name ending in 'a'.
            Name lists and the exact percentages may be viewed here.
            Apart from the ending of the English loan word, there are some other factors that explain the assignment of gender in Polish:
            • graphical representation of the borrowing
              e.g. guinea /gini/ 'coin' and 'state' graphemically ends in -a and is assigned feminine, though phonemically it fits neutral)
            • form of the suffix
              e.g. all E borrowings ending in -ist are assigned masc. by analogy to Polish words ending in -ista, E: escapist -> P: eskapista (masc.)
            • meaning of the borrowing
              e.g. E: dingo is assigned masc by analogy to P: pies though phonemically and graphemically it fits neut
            • sex of the referent
              e.g. E: lady is assigned fem in P though phonemically it fits neut: -/i/
            • gender of the same borrowing in another language
              e.g. E: round -> German: die Runde -> P: runda
          EXERCISE 2
          Choose 5 nouns of English origin from this list (same as in Ex.1) and think about the motivation behind their gender.
        • Category of number in nominal borrowings
          • Full adaptiation of an English borrowing to Polish pluralisation rules: English singular form is declined as regular Polish nouns, i.e. receives -i, -y, -e in plural, e.g. terminale, parkingi, toasty
          • Partial adaptiation of English words ending in -s
            • E plural ending -s is substituted for P plural ending -y (higher degree of adaptation)
              e.g. E: shorts -> P: szorty, E: jeans -> P: dżiny
            • E pluralia tantum -s ending (misinterpreted as plural ending -s) is cut off to form singlular Polish noun
              e.g. E: pyjamas -> P: piżama, piżamy, E: goggles -> P: gogle
            • E plural ending -s is preserved in Polish plural form (smaller degree of adaptation)
              e.g. E: cords -> P: cords (trousers)
          • depluralisation - English plural form is treated as singular in Polish (and possibly declined as a regular Polish noun, i.e. given -i, -y, -e ending in plural)
            e.g. E: drop, drops -> P: drops, dropsy
      2. VERBS
        • According to the degree of assimilation, verbs borrowed from English into Polish can be divided into three types
          1. fully assimilated verbs
            • assume -ować ending
              e.g. parkować
            • conjugate along Polish conjugation patterns
              e.g. parkującemu
            • some of them may have perfective and imperfective aspect, e.g. zaparkować
          2. partially assimilated verbs
            • no perfective forms
              e.g. jazzować but *zajazzować
          3. unassimilated verbs ("partial verbs")
            • only imperative forms of English verb is used in Polish
              e.g. play, pull
        • Part of speech (POS) of English verbal borrowings in Polish
          • usually a verb
            e.g. E Verb to charter -> P Verb czarterowac
          • rarely a gerund
            e.g. E Ger dubbing -> P Verb dubingować
          • or a noun
            e.g. E Noun hooligan -> P Verb chuliganić
                 E Noun whist -> P Verb wistować
            NOTICE: The Manczak-Fisiak's claim that wistować or chuliganić "were derived from" English nouns whist and hooligan does not mean that they were derived from these nouns directly. In fact, Polish wistować was probably derived from Polish noun wist, which in turn was derived from English noun whist. And similarly, Polish chuliganić came to Polish from the English noun hooligan not direcltly, but through Russian chuligan or chuliganit' (SJP).
        Approx. half of the adjectives borrowed into Polish from English inflect as native Polish adj.
        e.g. relewantny, kompatybilny
        The second half do not inflect.
        e.g. country, fair, sophisticated
        when borrowed into P, they behave as regular P adv and paricles, i.e. they do not inflect. They are usually borrowed without graphemic change.
        e.g. fifty-fifty, non-stop, halo
      • Into Polish, we may borrow particles that in English constitute...
        • bound inflectional morphemes
          e.g. dzięk-s (rare)
        • bound derivational morphemes
          e.g. cyber-przestrzeń
        • free morphemes - simplexes
          e.g. brydż-yk, faul/foul
        • constructs of free and infl morph
          e.g. drop-s, mail-ing
        • constructs of free and deriv morph
          e.g. cybersex, host-essa
        • constructs of 2+ free morph - compounds
          e.g. bukmacher/bookmacher, spotlight, copyright
      • Majority of borrowings that constitute complex words in English, in Polish function as simplexes:
        e.g.    'Host-essa obslugiwała' but not 'Pani hostowała'
        since Poles do not see -ess as a morpheme that can be chopped off or replaced
      • Only few borrowings of English words are relatively productive
        e.g.    Polish noun komputer has approx. 30 derivatives in Polish; compared to 4.4 derivatives for an average Polish simple noun and to over 600 for the most productive ones (Jadacka 1995:141). For the frequency list of derivatives of komputer - see here.
  3. Phonology of English Borrowings in Polish
    • Accent Change
      • In P penultimate, In E free. E words borrowed into P usually stressed on the penultimate syllable
        e.g. badminton E /' b Q d m i n t « n / -> P /b a d ' m i n t  n /.
      • Exceptions
        e.g. P 'chesterfield
      • Unaccented vowels get reduced in E, in P not
        e.g. badminton
      • E words with multiple accents have single accent when borrowed into P
        e.g. E / ' d  ù l t « , n i z « m / -> P / d a l ' t  n i s m /
    • Sound Change
      • In the process of borrowing an E word into P, three types of paradigmatic E phoneme identification may occur
        • Divergent - one E phoneme occurring in different E words is rendered by several P phonemes in P adaptations of these words. Applies more often to consonants than to vowels. It's a least frequent type of phoneme identification.
          e.g. E / Ã / -> P / u /, / a /
          E / b à dZ i t / -> P /b u d Z e t /, E /r à g b i / -> P /r a g b ö /
        • Convergent - several E phonemes in different E words are rendered by one P phoneme in P adaptations of these words. Applies more often to vowels.
          e.g. E / à /, / /, / Q /, / «/, / e/, / i / -> P / a /
          E / ' r à g b i / -> P /r a g b ö /, E /f r  k / -> P /f r a k /, etc
        • Direct - one E phoneme in an E word is rendered by one P phoneme in the P adaptation of this word. It's the most frequent type of phoneme identification.
          e.g. E / t / -> P / t /
          toast P /t « U s t / -> P /t  a s t /
      • In the process of borrowing an E word into P, two types of syntagmatic E phoneme identification may occur
        • Simplification - several E phonemes occurring one by one (or a diphthong, triphthong) in an E word are rendered by a simpler structure in the P adaptation of this word.
          e.g. E /ei/ -> P /e/
        • Extension - one E phoneme in an E word is rendered by a more complex structure in the P adaptation of this word.
          e.g. E / N / -> P / N k /
Manczak-Wohlfeld 1995, Tendencje rozwojowe wspolczenych zapozyczen angielskich w jezyku polskim, Universitas, Krakow.
Koneczna 1937, Fisiak 1970, cited after Manczak-Wohlfeld 1995
Jadacka H. 1995, Rzeczownik polski jako baza derywacyjna, WN-PWN, W-a.
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