Expletives

Jana337

Senior Member
čeština
Many Czechs know the expressions "psia krew" (dog's blood) and "cholera" (self-explanatory). How bad are they? Like "darn it" or worse? They sound funny and almost cute to me, but I am afraid I might underestimate their impact. :eek:

Dziękuje bardzo,

Jana
 
  • Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    Jana337 said:
    Many Czechs know the expressions "psia krew" (dog's blood) and "cholera" (self-explanatory). How bad are they? Like "darn it" or worse? They sound funny and almost cute to me, but I am afraid I might underestimate their impact. :eek:

    Dziękuję bardzo,

    Jana
    Hi Jana,

    Psia krew is a kind of an old-fashioned expression that is not very often used and if it is, mainly the older generations use it (to be honest even my dad doesn't use it:) , I heard it only from the elderly people). It is used as a quite strong intensifier (even a curse expression) of annoyance, irritation, anger, shock, etc. A synonym of it is psia mać which means exactly the same but IMHO is a little bit stronger. I'm not sure if there's any English equivalent of it at least I don't know any:eek:


    As for cholera it is pretty common among people at almost every age. I'd say that you could translate it into English depending on the context and intonation of the speaker. You may translate it as darn (it), damn(it), heck, hell, shit or even f**k; everything depends (as usually) on the context.
    Cholera! Nie mogę znaleźć moich kluczy!
    Darn it! I can't find my keys!

    Do cholery gdzie jest moja komórka?
    Where the hell is my cell?
    or very strong version
    Where the f**k is my cell?!

    Cholera gdzie jest moja komórka? (a little excited guy looing for his cellular phone))
    Where the heck is my cell?

    Do cholery co mu zrobiłeś?! (very angry and irritated tone)
    What the f**k did you do to him?!

    I think I wouldn't use psia krew:warn: at all (unless I'd like to take someone off ). I use sometimes (not too often;)) cholera but only in informal conversations with friends or when I get:mad: , however I try not to do so. Cholera is a type of swear word that you shouldn't use in unknown company. I'd mark it with :warn: :warn:

    Hope this helps,
    Thomas

    BTW:I hope you don't mind I corrected you.
     

    _sandra_

    Senior Member
    Poland - Polish
    Hi Jana and Thomas1,

    My 2 cents :
    Thomas, I totally agree with what you wrote about psia krew - it's hardly used nowadays. Same thing with psia mać - definitely stronger, but still very old fashioned.

    As for cholera I happen to disagree.. I would mark it with :warn:
    IMHO it can never be translated into f*ck even if when used in 'do cholery' which makes it a bit stronger.
    I would translate: Do cholery co mu zrobiłeś? /or rather: Co ty mu do cholery zrobiłeś?:)/ into What the hell did you do to him? (Same with Do cholery gdzie jest moja komórka).
    But of course perception/use of swear words is a rather personal thing..

    HTH
    Sandra
     

    Jana337

    Senior Member
    čeština
    Dziękuję.:)

    I had no clue that "psia krew" was démodé. It is used in our comedy sketches and satire to stereotypize Polish people, in particular coal miners. Can you see a justification for a link between the expletive and miners?

    Jana
     

    dudla

    Member
    Polish, Poland
    Hello,
    I live in Warsaw and I am 23 years old and I still use "psia krew", not very often, but I do. I don't think it is THAT old-fashioned. I like it because it sounds strong but it is not exactly a swear word (technically both words 'dog' and 'blood' are neutral).
    Surely, no one is going to laugh at you or look at you strangely if you say it.
    :)
     

    _sandra_

    Senior Member
    Poland - Polish
    Hi there,

    Well.. we will have to agree to disagree on this one then..:)
    I'm still sure I wouldn't use it, perhaps except while joking..

    Anyway, Jana, I can't see any link between them. I wouldn't associate it with miners at all.. ( well.. I don't know any but I guess they are likely to use more brutal/strong vocabulary;)
    Any other words which are used to stereotypize us?:)
    Take care,
    Sandra
     

    Jana337

    Senior Member
    čeština
    _sandra_ said:
    Any other words which are used to stereotypize us?:)
    Yes, a one-word-says-it-all for Poles is Antek. (similarly, Ivan for Russians, Helmut for Germans). :) Now I am reallly curious. :D

    Jana
     

    _sandra_

    Senior Member
    Poland - Polish
    Really it's Antek? Didn't know about it. My pick would be Jan -> / Jasiek, Janek/ as a typical Polish name which could convey in the satire: catholic, traditional village guy . But still Antek is/or rather was used in Polish to describe some kind of a dodger, crafty guy not too smart, not too honest etc..

    As for Czech from our satires, you always seem to eat knedliczki;)

    Talk to you soon,
    Sandra
     

    Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    Hello

    I'm double agreeing with Sandra :)

    Psia krew belongs to this kind of expressions which I'd not use unless in the above mentioned case. I'd not come it across for quite a long time till I read your post.
    I cannot see any link between a miner and the expression, I even asked my dad and he cannot either.
    My question is: Why do you associate it with the Polish (miners)? (now, I'm really curious:D ) In case of associations I also agree with my predecesor on the name/guy (I even thought of the same reading Jana's post earlier),
    I'd definety go for Jan/Janek/Jaś as a typical Polish name. However, I don't associate Antek with the kind of guy described by Sandra:rolleyes:
    As for the rest of your typical names for another nationalities "Ivan for Russians, Helmut for Germans" (well we use Ivan for all people from the former Soviet Union), we use them in Poland too (+ Helga for a German woman).

    Just to add a word to Sandra's 'knedliczki'; I know that there exist also 'Pepiczki' which is a slightly facetious term for Czechs, do you have any more terms reffering to Poles (or other nationalities)?:)

    BTW:Sandra giving 2! for cholera I used a three-grade scale (e.g. kurde !; cholera !!; kur** !!!) and translating it this way I thought of some movie translations when you come across watching a film but you are right that grading swear words it's a very individual case.;)

    TC
     

    Jana337

    Senior Member
    čeština
    _sandra_ said:
    Really it's Antek? Didn't know about it. My pick would be Jan -> / Jasiek, Janek/ as a typical Polish name which could convey in the satire: catholic, traditional village guy . But still Antek is/or rather was used in Polish to describe some kind of a dodger, crafty guy not too smart, not too honest etc..

    As for Czech from our satires, you always seem to eat knedliczki;)

    Talk to you soon,
    Sandra
    I have heard of knedliczki and Pepiczki. :)
    In fact, we always eat knedlíky. Knedlíčky is what you can find in soups. We eat those too, but knedlíky are really typical of us: here with plums, here with guláš and here, most importantly, knedlo-vepřo-zelo - usually not my favorite meals, but after a couple of months spent in America, you wouldn't have to twist my arm. ;)

    Psia krew: I must have seen it in a cartoon or something like that, and it is still lingering in my mind. I cannot offer a more satisfying explanation. But I will talk to my parents when I am at home for Christmas - they will hopefully help. I live in the Czech part of Silesia, so "my" stereotypes about Poles do not have to reflect the situation in the rest of my country.

    Which might apply to Antek as well. Perhaps it is an idiosyncrasy of my father who throws it in here and there. Jan is not considered a name typical of Poland. It would be hard to distinguish from the Czech Jans who are plentiful as well. Jasiek would be possible for such purposes. Apart from Antek, I cannot think of a similar one-size-fits-all word. Again, I promise to do some research.

    Oh, what a hilarious thread. :D

    Jana
     

    _sandra_

    Senior Member
    Poland - Polish
    Hi there,
    Thomas1 said:
    However, I don't associate Antek with the kind of guy described by Sandra:rolleyes:
    Honestly, neither did I at the beginnig (neither did any of my friends whom I asked about it), but when I asked my mother/grandmother, they said it was pretty common to use it in this meaning. (especially in the expresion: 'Antek z Pragi' /--> Praga = district of Warsaw, still considered by some people as a not very safe, rather dodgy place). That's why I wrote WAS:)
    I know that there exist also 'Pepiczki' which is a slightly facetious term for Czechs
    I found this in Wikipedia: Pepik or Pepiczek, Polish offensive referring to the diminutive forms of Czech name Jozef that sound bizarre in Polish
    Jana, do you considered it offensive? I'd go for what Thomas said - it's rather facetious to me..
    BTW:Sandra giving 2! for cholera I used a three-grade scale (e.g. kurde !; cholera !!; kur** !!!)
    Well, I still disagree...:) I would grade kurde in the same way as cholera (cholera sounds better though, I despite kurde - which is what more possibly could be heard from miners when they -for some reasons- would try to avoid k*rwa:)

    Sandra
     

    Jana337

    Senior Member
    čeština
    _sandra_ said:
    I found this in Wikipedia: Pepik or Pepiczek, Polish offensive referring to the diminutive forms of Czech name Jozef that sound bizarre in Polish
    Jana, do you considered it offensive? I'd go for what Thomas said - it's rather facetious to me..
    The Czech name is actually spelled with "s": Josef. Jozef can be found in Slovak and perhaps in other Slavic languages (Polish as well, right? Józef). Pepík and Pepíček are both used as diminutives. They are neither insulting nor facetious per se - you just need to choose an appropriate tone so that they sound so. :D The most commonly used version of Josef is Pepa. This one is not even considered a diminutive, and is pretty neutral. You cannot give it a derisive flavor.
    "Pepík" is used by people in Moravia and Silesia to refer to people (and to poke fun at them) from Bohemia, in particular from Praha. However, I don't think that the name is substantially less popular in Moravia and Silesia which would - if not justify - explain the facetious name. :)

    Jana
     

    Sybil

    Senior Member
    US
    Poland/Polish
    Hi,

    If I may butt in... ;-)

    Jana, Sandra, everyone... Nice to meet you :)

    When I think of the name "Antek" in reference to a group of people, "bose Antki" comes to mind. "Bose Antki" is a derogatory term which refers to the Polish people living in The Congress Kingdom or "Kongresowka" (1815-1846) (see Polish history) who were supposed to be poor and walked barefoot. The phrase was coined by the Poles living in the Prussian partition of Poland, I believe, and I overheard my grandmother use it on occasion.

    Speaking of "cholera," I must admit that once in a while I use it myself, but I try to "soften" the noun with an adjective (e-hem) so I say "cholera jasna" or "do jasnej cholerki."

    Actually, "do jasnej cholerki" is my favorite since it's not as strong as "cholera" ;-)
     

    Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    Hi Sybil

    I've never heard of the term you brought up, however not knowing it I'd also say it is rather disparaging.

    As for Praga I think it always bears such connotations as Sandra wrote about.

    Jana I was racking my brains where you could hear psia krew (talking about Polish cinematography) and came across Janosik, it's a Polish series (similar to Robin Hood) he helps poor people and upholds justice breaking the law by robbing rich nobles. Have you seen it?

    Thomas
     

    Jana337

    Senior Member
    čeština
    Thomas1 said:
    Hi Sybil

    I've never heard of the term you brought up, however not knowing it I'd also say it is rather disparaging.

    As for Praga I think it always bears such connotations as Sandra wrote about.

    Jana I was racking my brains where you could hear psia krew (talking about Polish cinematography) and came across Janosik, it's a Polish series (similar to Robin Hood) he helps poor people and upholds justice breaking the law by robbing rich nobles. Have you seen it?

    Thomas
    I didn't say I had seen it in a movie or series. I could have seen it in some Czech comedy sketches but definitely also in cartoons in a journal (there is a marvelous political cartoon appearing weekly in my favorite journal).

    Janosik??? I haven't heard of the series, but I know the brigand's name, from Slovakia. Do Poles believe he was a Pole? :) If so, I think we are in for a new thread:)

    Jana
     

    Sybil

    Senior Member
    US
    Poland/Polish
    Thomas,

    Yes, I know, "bosy Antek" is not the most flattering name for anyone, but, well, we can't change the past. You can try to google for "bose Antki" (or use any other search engine) and see what comes up.
     
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