What is entering and what is leaving

Chodzić to go is one of the verbs in Polish which you can call a ‘base’ verb. What it means is that by adding a prefix to chodzić you can generate a whole lot of other verbs which, although related to ‘going’, mean something different. Thus you have a long list of verbs such as:

podchodzić to approach

przychodzić to come / to arrive (on foot)

schodzić to go down (downstairs or downhill)

wchodzić to enter / to go up the stairs 

wychodzić to leave 

odchodzić to walk away 

obchodzić to walk around 

 just to mention a few.  It’s easy to get overwhelmed so let’s concentrate on two verbs: 

wchodzić to enter and wychodzić to leave.

 They look and sound very similar, and therefore it’s helpful to find a way to differentiate between them and the best way to do this, is by association to other words and placing both verbs in an appropriate context.

Forming these associations is a very individual thing – everyone has his or her own method.  What I’m going to suggest is the image below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, you may ask what a camera and a couple of books have got to do with entering or leaving but in fact – it’s quite a lot. 

In Polish książki wychodzą books ‘leave’ [i.e. are published] and filmy wchodzą (na ekrany) films ‘enter’ (the cinema/screen). 

For example:

Książki zagranicznych autorów regularnie wychodzą w Polsce.

Books by foreign authors are published regularly in Poland.

Książki polskich autorów rzadko wychodzą za granicą.

Books by Polish authors are rarely published abroad. 

Wyszła* nowa książka Elżbiety Cheręzińskiej “Turniej Cieni”.  Przeczytaj fragment. 

*wyszła is the past feminine form of wyjść [perfective form or wychodzić]

A new book by Elżbieta Cheręzińska ‘The Great Game” has been published. Read an extract.

Nowa książka Tomasza Łysiaka jeszcze nie wyszła, a już jest na liście bestsellerów! Czytelnicy zamawiają w przedsprzedaży! 

The new book by Tomasz Łysiak hasn’t been published yet, and it’s already a bestseller. The readers are pre-ordering.

Wydawnictwo Zysk i S-ka* przestawia nową ofertę na sezon jesienno-zimowy – będzie wychodzić więcej książek popularno-naukowych. 

The publisher Zysk and Co presents its new offering for the autumn-winter season – there will be more popular science books published. 

 *S-ka is an abbreviation of spółkaCo (company) 

The verb wychodzić also refers to the publishing of gazety daily newspapers and czasopisma magazines. For example:

Gazeta wychodzi codziennie. A newspaper is published daily.

Tygodnik wychodzi co tydzień. A weekly is published every week. 

Miesięcznik wychodzi co miesiąc. A monthly is published every month.

Kwartalnik wychodzi co kwartał. A quarterly is published every quarter.  

Periodyki fachowe wychodzą regularnie. Trade magazines are published regularly. 

However, there is another context in which wychodzić is used. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Nic mi nie wychodzi 

Nothing seems to be working for me / I’m failing at everything. 

So what about wchodzić? Well, it’s all about filmy films and prawo law.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Filmy wchodzą na ekrany films are released (literally films enter the screens) while prawo wchodzi w życie  a law comes into force (literally comes into life).

For example:

Nowy film Clinta Eastwooda wchodzi na ekrany w październiku.

The new film (directed) by Clint Eastwood is going to be released (enters the screens) in October. 

Nowe prawo handlowe wchodzi w życie za kilka miesięcy. O czym warto szczególnie wiedzieć? 

A new trading law comes into force in a few months. What in particular is worth knowing? 

Polish tutor tips:

Find other images which illustrate the verbs wchodzić and wychodzić and which would help you to remember how to use these verbs in Polish. 

Why not find images which would help you remember other verbs:

odchodzić vs obchodzić (walk away vs go around)

schodzić po schodach vs wchodzić po schodach (coming down the stairs vs going up the stairs)