Subtlex-pl: subtitle-based word frequency estimates for Polish

Pawel Mandera*, Emmanuel Keuleers, Zofia Wodniecka, Marc Brysbaert

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

74 Citations (Scopus)


We present SUBTLEX-PL, Polish word frequencies based on movie subtitles. In two lexical decision experiments, we compare the new measures with frequency estimates derived from another Polish text corpus that includes predominantly written materials. We show that the frequencies derived from the two corpora perform best in predicting human performance in a lexical decision task if used in a complementary way. Our results suggest that the two corpora may have unequal potential for explaining human performance for words in different frequency ranges and that corpora based on written materials severely overestimate frequencies for formal words. We discuss some of the implications of these findings for future studies comparing different frequency estimates. In addition to frequencies for word forms, SUBTLEX-PL includes measures of contextual diversity, part-of-speech-specific word frequencies, frequencies of associated lemmas, and word bigrams, providing researchers with necessary tools for conducting psycholinguistic research in Polish. The database is freely available for research purposes and may be downloaded from the authors' university Web site at

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-483
Number of pages13
JournalBehavior Research Methods
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Word frequencies
  • Polish language
  • Lexical decision
  • Visual word recognition


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