Describing personality in Polish

Posted on 27. Jul, 2015 by in Human body, Vocabulary

Attempts to describe personality types, character traits, and temperaments have always amused people. Even though human personality has defied all attempts to categorize it into a few types, so many attempts have been made to do so. It was the Greeks who first attempted a description of human personality and character. They categorized human personality under the scope of the four temperaments – sanguine, choleric, phlegmatic and melancholic.


Today language has a variety of words for describing people, their personality, character and temperament. These words can be categorized into words that describe a person’s general behavior and outlook, attitude towards others, attitude towards money and property, and his/her view of life.

Here is a list of some Polish words describing someone’s character:

accurate – dokładny
aggressive – agresywny
ambitious – ambitny
bore – nudziarz
boring – nudny
carefree – beztroski
character – charakter
cheeky – bezczelny
clever – zdolny
conceited – zarozumiały
courageous – odważny
coward – tchórz
cowardly – tchórzliwy
cruel – okrutny
dishonest – nieuczciwy
faithful – wierny
feature – cecha
friendly – przyjazny
full of energy – energiczny
generous – wielkoduszny
genuine – szczery
honest – uczciwy
incurable optimist – niepoprawny optymista
intellectual – intelektualista
introvert – introwertyk
lazy – leniwy
lazybones – leń
liar – kłamca
mean – skąpy
modest – skromny
nervous – nerwowy
nice – miły
non-stop talker – gaduła
nosy – wścibski
optimist – optymista
patient – cierpliwy
personality – osobowość
pessimist – pesymista
pleasant – przyjemny
polite – uprzejmy; grzeczny
responsible – odpowiedzialny
shy – nieśmiały
sociable – towarzyski
strange – dziwny
stubborn – uparty
stupid – głupi
tactful – taktowny
tidy – porządny
tolerant – tolerancyjny
truthful – prawdomówny
warm-hearted – serdeczny

Music and musical instruments in Poland

Posted on 18. Jul, 2015 by in Culture, music, Vocabulary

Poland is home to a lively and varied musical tradition. Since the early middle ages, when around the 13th century the region’s earliest composers were experimenting with European composition styles and creating innovative works, Poland has nurtured its musical talent. Consequently, there are a whole range of eclectic musical styles that have thrived in Poland over the centuries, from the rhythmic fusion of Eastern European folk, to the flowing and timeless compositions of high Romanticism.

Most musical historians trace the roots of Poland’s successes to the 13th century, when composers began to experiment with polyphonic chant in much the same way that the musicians of the Franco-Prussian school in Germany and the West were doing. But it’s not until the 15th century that the first towering figure of Polish classical music emerges. Mikołaj Radomski, probably lived and worked in Kraków, but is really only known by the signature that identifies his works, which were excessively religious in theme.

At the court of Zygmunt III Vasa, who reigned as Poland’s king from 1566 to 1632, many musicians from Western Europe flocked to take advantage of increased patronage of the arts. The result was a sudden influx of baroque classical styles that came to be the trademark of the native Polish composers well into the next century (Adam Jarzębski and Bartłomiej Pękiel are particularly notable in this period).

The 19th century could fairly be considered as Poland’s golden age of musical success. After a period of artistic floundering, which saw musician after musician try to reinvigorate the previous successes of Poland’s opera boom, which had made Warsaw a centre of musical focus in the first half of the 16th century, Poland underwent a musical renaissance. In fact, the successes of the era are often put down to the development of what are now considered the central Polish folk and classical traditions. The polonez, for example, became popular in the early 19th century, but actually originated in the late 16th, permeated through Europe very prolifically, and a number of really recognisable composers tried their hand at the form (these include Beethoven and Bach).

However, it is widely recognised that the master of composition in the polonez form, was one of Poland’s own: Fryderyk Chopin. Today, he is regarded as one of the central figures in the rise and success of European Romantic music, and in Poland he is still a proud reminder of the nation’s historical musical prowess. The most famous of his polonez compositions is perhaps ‘The Military Polonaise’, which evokes the overarching nationalistic theme of Polish knighthood and victory over foreign invaders.

Poland also boasts a strong folk music heritage, and while this genre was heavily suppressed during the years of communist rule, it has undergone something of a modern resurgence, still enjoying popularity in many rural parts of the country today. In Zakopane in the south, for example, the central street, Ulica Krupówki, is lined with live music bars playing the region’s own Podhale folk style into the early hours.

In the late half of the 20th century, and particularly after the fall of communism, Poland has embraced a really wide range of musical styles. Most notably perhaps is the nation’s successes in the genre of Heavy Metal. Bands like Turbo, have been hailed as Poland’s answer to metal giants Iron Maiden, while hard rock festivals in the country continue to be extremely well attended.

Polish pop music is also alive and kicking, and you’d be hard pushed to find a Karaoke bar that doesn’t play at least one Polish hit in a night! What’s more, you only need to wander into any of the live jazz bars on offer in Poland’s major cities to realise how popular and successful the style has become among young musicians.

Like all things of culture in Poland, the country’s musical tradition is very much alive. Not only can the country lay claim to some of the great names in the European classical tradition, but there’s a certain atmosphere of enjoyment that prevails in the live music bars and open mic nights of the country, which makes Poland simply a great place to be playing music.


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Here are names of some instruments in Polish:

accordion – akordeon
bagpipes – dudy
banjo – banjo
bassoon – fagot
brass instruments –  instrumenty dęte blaszane
castanets – kastaniety
cellist – wilonczelista
cello – wiolonczela
clarinet – klarnet
cymbals – cymbałki
double bass – kontrabas
drummer – perkusista
drums – perkusja
drumstick – pałeczka /do gry na bębnie/
flute – flet
gong – gong
guitar – gitara
guitarist – gitarzysta
harp – harfa
horn – róg
instrument – instrument
instrumental – instrumentalny
lute – lutnia
lyre – lira
mandolin – mandolina
mouth organ – harmonijka ustna
organ – organy
pianist – pianista
piano – fortepian/ pianino
play the piano – grać na pianinie
saxophone – saksofon
saxophonist – saksofonista
string – struna
tambourine – tamburyn
triangle – trójkąt
trombone – puzon
trumpet – trąbka
trumpeter – trębacz
violin – skrzypce
violinist – skrzypek
wind instruments – instrumenty dęte
zither – cytra

Let’s go sailing! Mazury anyone?

Posted on 07. Jul, 2015 by in Sports, summer, Vocabulary

Mazury is a lovely land of a thousands lakes in the north-eastern Poland. Sail the numerous and attractive water trails, see the amazing beauty of the region, and stay in one of the many places we offer. Sailing in Mazury is more exciting thanks to the stunning landscapes. Hotels in Mazury are a great option for that sailing break, but Poland has much more to offer with smaller lake resorts being situated in other great lakelands, such as the Suwałki Lakes or Kaszuby, where you can enjoy yachting as well. Sailing holidays are a great opportunity both for those who have already fallen in love with the lakes and those who have no previous experience with either boats or yachts. Sailing breaks in comfortable accommodation in Mazury or any other region makes a perfect option for families or to bridge gaps between business partners.

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To sail – particularly on the sea – a license is required. These can be obtained after completing a course organised in cooperation with the Polish Sailing Association. Without a license you can only use small inland sailing vessels or be piloted by someone who possesses all the necessary documents and has the experience to navigate in these waters.

And a little sailing vocabulary for you…

away from wind z wiatrem
boat hookbosak
boat – łódź; statek; żaglówka
bow linescumy dziobowe
bow thrusterster strumieniowy
diesel tankzbiornik paliwa
downwind kursz wiatrem
foresail fok
furl the sailszwijać żagle; zwinąć żagle
gybezwrot z wiatrem
hoist the sailspodnosić żagle
leewardstrona zawietrzna; zawietrzny
log bookdziennik jachtowy
mooring linecuma
navigation setzestaw nawigacyjny
off windz wiatrem
penalty kara
raise the sailspodnosić żagle
sail żagiel
to sailżeglować
signal flare flara
spread the sailsrozwijać żagle; rozwinąć żagle
tack zwrotna wiatr
under full sailpod pełnymi żaglami
upwind kurspod wiatr
water tankzbiornik wody
winch handlekorba do kabestanu
wind aftwiatr z rufy
windwardstrona nawietrzna; nawietrzny

Happy sailing!