Friday, November 22, 2013

Cutting Edge: Ciąć

The root "-ciąć" means "to cut."  There are several variations of this word, and most of them have pretty close-knit meanings; that is, the meanings of the derivative words don't seem to wander much from the main root, unlike with other Polish verbs.  The main distinguishing feature of this group of words seems to be the irregular present-tense conjugation:


This conjugation seems to follow all the "ciąć" words through the different variations with different prefixes.  On occasion, one might stumble upon the slangy imaginary infinitive "tnąć," which is an incorrect form of "ciąć" reverse engineered and bastardized from the irregular conjugation, though there does exist a participle "tnąc" (with no accent mark on the final consonant).

The words that end in the variation "-cinać" have a more regular "-am -asz" conjugation, for example:


The main word related to this root is:

ciąć, pociąć - to cut, to cut through, to clip, to chop, to hack

ciąć na kawałki - to cut into pieces
ciać na plastry - to cut into slices, to slice
ciać na kostkę - to cut into cubes, to dice
ciąć się o coś - to fight over something

docinać, dociąć - to cut (all the way) through, to cut extra, to cut to fit; to taunt

docinek - taunt (noun)

nacinać, naciąć - to cut down

nadcinać, nadciąć - to nick, to score

nadcięcie - (surgical) incision; nick, notch (noun)

obcinać, obciąć - to cut, to clip

obcinać włosy - to have one's hair cut
obcinać paznokcie - to cut one's nails

odcinać, odciąć - to cut off, to chop off, to cut away

pociąć - to cut up, to chop, to shred; to incise

podcinać, podciąć - to trim, to prune, to clip

podcinać komuś nogi - to trip somebody (up)
podcinać/podciąć sobie żyły - to slit one's wrists
podciąć skrzydła - to take the wind out of somebody’s sails

przecinać, przeciąć - to cut, to slice; to cut short, to interrupt

przeciąć sobie palec - to cut one's finger
przeciąć wstęgę - to cut a ribbon
przeciąc zakład - to close a bet
przecinać na pół - to cut in half
przecinać ciszę - to break silence
przecinać kłótnie - to interrupt an argument

przecinek - comma (noun)

przycinać, przyciąć - to trim, to crop; to catch

przycinać na wymiar - to trim down to size
przycinać drzewa/krzewy - to prune trees/bushes
przyciąć sobie język - to bite one's tongue

przycinanie - pruning (noun)

rozcinać, rozciąć - to cut, to cleave, to sever

rozcięcie - dissection, slit; vent (noun)

ścinać, ściąć - to cut off, to fell (tree); to smash (ball in sports); to coagulate

ścinać zakręty - to cut corners
ściąć żniwa - to cut down the harvest
ściąć się - to flunk

ucinać, uciąć - to break off, to cut short; to have, to do

ucinać/uciąć sobie drzemkę - to take a nap

wcinać, wciąć - to cut into

wcięcie - indenture, notch (noun)

wycinać, wyciąć - to cut out

zacinać, zaciąć - to cut; to whip, to lash; to clench, to set; to jam

zacinać się, zaciać się - to cut oneself; to be stuck; to persist; to stammer
Coś się zacięło - Something got stuck

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