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There is more to Hungarian

than goulash!
by Lszl Ragoncsa

GRAMMAR COURSE FOR BEGINNERS

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa, THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH!


ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

PREFACE
This is the revised version of my book you can download on my blog (hunlang.wordpress.com).
After reading it through a couple of times, I realized some mistakes I shouldnt have made and saw
a few possibilities to improve things.
To excuse myself a little bit, I wrote this book alone. I had nobody to help me or a reader to
supervise me, thus all the difficulties and the responsibility lie on my shoulders. Given the extent
of the book, however, mistakes are nothing to be surprised about.
The improvement comprehends a better grouping of nouns and verbs. Even though there
was no superfluous rambling about grammatical topics in the first book, I gave it a harder try to
stick to the point. I hope the layout will allow you to follow my explanations and examples in a
much more intelligible way.
As for the exercises, you can practise consonants and vowels right below the explanations
about them. Those tasks have no solution key to them because they help you with the
pronunciation and finding words in the dictionary. You can find more excercises to different topics
with a solution key at the end of the book (but no key to Exercise 32 dictionary task).
All in all, the content of the book is the same as the previous one, only with the attempt to
extend and arrange certain grammatical elements better.
Good luck with your studies!

The author

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

CONTENT
PREFACE 2
INTRODUCTION 9
PHONETICS 13
CONSONANTS IN DETAILS 14
MORE ABOUT GEMINATION / HOMONYMS 21
VOWELS IN DETAILS 22
MORE EXERCISES ON VOWELS / VOWEL HARMONY 29
WHICH SYLLABLE IS ACCENTUATED? 30

NOUNS AND PLURAL FORMS 31


GROUP 1 32
GROUP 2 33
GROUP 3 34
GROUP 4 35
GROUP 5 36
GROUP 6 37
GROUP 7 38
GROUP 8 / GROUP 9 / SUPPLEMENTAL 39

ACCUSATIVE CASE 40
PLURAL FOR ACCUSATIVE CASE 42

DATIVE CASE 42
ADJECTIVES 43
ATTRIBUTIVE ADJECTIVES / PREDICATIVE ADJECTIVES 43
PLURAL ADJECTIVES / GROUP 1 / GROUP 2 / GROUP 3 44
GROUP 4 / GROUP 5 45
COMPARISON OF ADJECTIVES 46
IRREGULAR ADJECTIVES WHEN IN COMPARISON 47
ACCUSATIVE FOR ADJECTIVES / ADJECTIVAL EXPRESSIONS / ADJECTIVES DEPRIVED 48

ARTICLES 49
POSSESSION 51
POSSESSIVE CASE 52
POSSESSIVE ENDINGS 52
GROUP 1 / GROUP 2 54
GROUP 3 / DEFINITE ARTICLES AND POSSESSIVE CASE 55
PLURAL IN POSSESSIVE CASE 56
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

POSSESSIVE CASE IN ACCUSATIVE CASE / SHOULD I SAY E OR ? 57


EMPHASIS ON THE POSSESSOR 58
POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS 59
THE SUFFIX AND THE POSSESSIVE QUESTION / BELONG TO 60
COMPARISON OF THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS AND POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS 61
OF VS. S 62
PRONOUNS 63
PERSONAL PRONOUNS 64
ACCUSATIVE PRONOUNS 66
DATIVE PRONOUNS 68
REFLEXIVE PRONOUNS 69
ACCUSATIVE AND DATIVE CASE FOR REFLEXIVE PRONOUNS 70
RECIPROCAL PRONOUNS 71
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS 72
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF VICINITY 72
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF QUALITY 74
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF MANNER 75
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EXPRESSING SIZE 76
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF PLACE 76
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS FOR THE SAME 77
INTERROGATIVE PRONOUNS 78
MI? KI? 79
MIRT? MIKOR? 80
MELYIK? 81
HOGY? MILYEN? MITA? MEDDIG? 82
HNY? MENNYI? 83
INDEFINITE PRONOUNS 84
SOK 85
KEVS 86
EGY KEVS, EGY KIS, NHNY 87
NHNY, EGY-KT, EGY PR 88
J NHNY, ELG SOK 89
J SOK, RENGETEG 90
TL SOK, TL KEVS 91
A LEGTBB, A LEGKEVESEBB 92
MINDEN, AZ SSZES, MINDEN EGYES, AZ EGSZ, EGSZ 93
MINDKETT, EGYIK SEM, VALAMELYIK 94
MS, A MSIK, A TBBI, A TBBIEK 95
SUMMARY TABLE FOR INDEFINITE PRONOUNS 96
RELATIVE PRONOUNS 97

VERBS AND TENSES 99


INFINITIVE 100
DEFINITE AND INDEFINITE CONJUGATION 101
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

PRESENT TENSE 103


HIGH- AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH INDEFINITE CONJUGATION 103
HIGH- AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH DEFINITE CONJUGATION 105
DEFINITE CONJUGATION + -LAK, -LEK 106
MIXED VERBS 107
VERBS IN -S, -SZ, -Z 108
THE IK VERBS 109
17 IRREGULAR VERBS 110
EXPRESSING FUTURE ACTS WITH PRESENT TENSE / TIME EXPRESSIONS FOR PRESENT TENSE / PPEN 114

PAST TENSE 115


HIGH- AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH INDEFINITE CONJUGATION 116
HIGH- AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH DEFINITE CONJUGATION 116
GROUP 3 117
EXCEPTION VERBS AND IRREGULAR VERBS 118
PRESENT, PAST OR BOTH? 120

FUTURE TENSE 121


MAJD 122

MOODS 123
IMPERATIVE MOOD 123
CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD 124
EXCEPTIONS AND IRREGULAR VERBS 125
IRREGULAR VERBS 126
CONDITIONAL MOOD 128
PRESENT CONDITIONAL 128
IRREGULAR VERBS 129
POLITE EXPRESSIONS / WISHES 130
PAST CONDITIONAL / HOW WOULD I HAVE BEEN? 131

CONDITIONAL CLAUSES 132


HA NEM + PRESENT CONDITIONAL / PAST CONDITIONAL 133

CAUSATION 134
PASSIVE VOICE 137
PASSIVE QUESTION / BY = LTAL 139

REPORTED SPEECH 140


REPORTED QUESTION 141

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

PHRASAL VERBS 142


RULES OF WRITING VERBAL PREFIXES 153
MEG / ANSWERING WITH VERBAL PREFIXES 154
VERBS REQUIRING WHAT? 155
EXPRESSIONS WITH ELEMENTARY VERBS 156

CONJUNCTIONS 163
DOUBLE CONJUNCTIONS 172
HOGY 173

ADVERBS OF PLACE 175


OCCURRENCE INSIDE AN OBJECT 176
OCCURRENCE ON THE SURFACE OF AN OBJECT 177
OCCURRENCE NEXT TO AN OBJECT 178
SUFFIXES LOVE THE DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EZ, AZ 179
SUFFIXES FOR FOREIGN COUNTRIES 180
DIFFERENT POINT OF VIEW FROM ENGLISH / PERSONAL ADVERBS OF PLACE FORMED FROM SUFFIXES 181
EMPHASIS ON THE PERSON / ACCUMULATION OF SUFFIXES 182
OCCURRENCE IN A WIDER AREA POSTPOSITIONS / POSTPOSITIONS FOR ADVERBS OF PLACE 183
PERSONAL POSTPOSITIONS 184
POSTPOSITIONS WITH VERBAL PREFIXES / EMPHASIS ON THE PERSON 185
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS WITH POSTPOSITIONS 185
LETS GO HERE AND THERE! / OTHER FUNDAMENTAL ADVERBS OF PLACE 186
PERSONAL FORMS FOR ADVERBS WITH SOMEBODY, SOMETHING / EGYTT, SZEMBEN, ELLEN 188
SUMMARY TABLE FOR ADVERBS OF PLACE 190

ADVERBS OF TIME 191


-VAL, -VEL 191
-VAL, -VEL WITH DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS / WITH TIME 192
-KOR 193
MOMENTS OR PERIODS WITH IG / -RA, -RE 194
HOW LONG? / MLVA / -N, -ON, -EN, -N BELL 195
ELTT, UTN / -VAL, -VEL EZELTT / -(O)NTA, -(E)NTE, -NKNT 196
THE DEFINITE ARTICLE AZ / FEL / KZTT / TJBAN, TJT, KRL / IN PROGRESS 197
-N, -ON, -EN, -N KERESZTL, T / MIELTT / SOME FREQUENT ADVERBS OF TIME / WHICH YEAR? 198
SUMMARY TABLE FOR ADVERBS OF TIME / DATE AND TIME 199

ADVERBS OF MANNER 204


SETTLE DOWN TO DINNER 204
-RT IN DETAILS / THE DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EZ, AZ / HOGY? 205
-NKNT 207
-KNT, -KPP, -KPPEN, MINT / -VAL, -VEL / -STUL,- STL / -BAN BEN 208
NLKL / HELYETT / SZERINT / LTAL 209
ELLEN / MIATT, VGETT / IRNT 210
JAVRA / SZMRA, RSZRE / FEJBEN / ALAPJN / NYOMN / RVN / NZVE 211
BELERTVE, ELTEKINTVE / ILLETI / FOGVA / KAPCSN / RDEKBEN 212
SUMMARY TABLE 212

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

NUMERALS 213
CARDINAL NUMBERS 213
ORDINAL NUMBERS 214
FRACTIONS / DISTRIBUTIVE NUMBERS 215
MULTIPLICATIVE NUMBERS / NUMBERS WITH -OS, -ES, -S / DECIMAL NUMBERS 216

MODAL VERBS 217


-HAT, -HET 218
TUD 219
KPES/KPTELEN 220
SZABAD 221
CONJUGATING THE INFINITIVE / KELL 222
KELLENE / MUSZJ 223
SZKSGES / TILOS / LEHET 224

VERBAL NOUNS 225


INFINITIVE AND IMPERSONAL EXPRESSIONS / PRBL, MEGY, JN 225
PRESENT PARTICIPLE 226
PAST PARTICIPLE / FUTURE PARTICIPLE 227
ADVERB FOR CONDITION 228

ASSIMILATION 229
WORD FORMATION 231
WORD ORDER 234
DIRECT WORD ORDER, YES OR NO / DIRECT QUESTION 234
REARRANGING AND REARRANGING AND REARRANGING 235
UNALTERABLE RULES 236
QUESTION WITH A QUESTION WORD 237

NEGATION AND AFFIRMATION 238


NEM 238
NINCS 239
NE / SE, SEM / NEHOGY, HOGYNE / SOHA 240

MEDLEY 241
GREETINGS 241
WRITING A LETTER 244
TIME 245
THERE IS, THERE ARE 246
TO BE TO, SUPPOSED TO / EATING AND DRINKING 247
WHEATER / AGE / THE ONE WHO 248
CLOTHING / WATCHING TV / PURPOSE CLAUSE 249
LISTEN VS. HEAR / GETTING USED TO 250
HAPPEN / TO PREFER 251
TAG QUESTION, I WONDER / EMPHASIS ON THE SUBJECT 252
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

WHAT! HOW! / POLITE ADDRESSES / ADVICE 253


AS IF, AS THOUGH / PROVERBS AND LOCUTIONS 254
GENERALLY SPEAKING ABOUT PEOPLE 255
NAMES / NATIONALITIES 256
HUNGARY 259
MATH 260

EXERCISES 261
KEY 287
SUMMARY TABLES 311

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

INTRODUCTION
When a native English speaker sets about learning Hungarian, the most evident problem arises:
English is a Germanic, Hungarian is an Uralic language. To explain what a bold enterprise youre
about to undertake, take a closer look at the following differences typical to Hungarian.

GENERAL INFORMATION

Hungarian is a Uralic language belonging to the Finno-Ugric branch.

This points to the fact that it is an agglutinative language, so there are a variety
of suffixes and endings attached to the end of a word or to the stem of a word.
These suffixes and endings can be even accumulated if needed. This kind of word
formation allows the speakers to express themselves short and to the point.

This phenomenon is reflected by topic-prominent aspect, frequent omission of


the substantive verb, fitting verbs with suffixes in all numbers and persons,
when it comes to tenses.

Speaking of tenses, Hungarian stays true to its nature in this respect, too. All you
need is two tenses (present, past) and three moods (indicative, imperative,
present / past conditional).

The future tense is often replaced with present tense or paraphrased like in English.
For example: I will go. Menni fogok.

Besides, personal pronouns are often omitted due to the suffixes attached to the
verbs.

Instead of prepositions, Hungarian expresses grammatical relations with suffixes,


endings and postpositions which determine a number of cases (accusative, dative,
instrumental). However, there is no need to remember the name for most of the
cases. Example: Ceruzval rom a piszkozatot. I write the rough draft with a pencil.
To translate with a pencil, all you have to know is that the preposition with is equal
to the Hungarian suffixes -val, -vel. The fact that its instrumental case is secondary.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

VOWEL HARMONY

The other distinctive feature of agglutinative languages is vowel harmony. It means


that certain words containing certain vowels take suffixes with certain
vowels. Examples for suffixes and vowel harmony:

jogtalansg lawlessness  it has deep vowels, so it takes deep-vowel suffixes


jog + -talan + -sg
law + -less + -ness
embertelensg inhumanity  it has high vowels, so it takes high-vowel suffixes
ember + -telen + -sg
human +
-in
+ -ity
And thats what an accumulation of suffixes looks like:
megengedhetetlensg - inadmissibility
megenged + -het + -etlen + -sg
to admit + -ible +
-in
+ -ity

POSSESSION

Possession is also different in Hungarian. We do have a verb equivalent to to have,


but when it comes to sentences like I have a house., it would sound constrained.
Such possessive constructions are formed with:

dative pronouns (nekem, neked, neki, neknk, nektek, nekik)


+
the 3rd PS or 3rd PP form of the substantive verb (van, vannak)
+
indefinite article (egy)
+
Example:

NOUN WITH A POSSESSIVE ENDING


I have a HOUSE = Nekem van

egy HZAM

The literal translation is: There is a house at my disposal / for me.


An even more literal translation would be: There is a house of mine.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

10

GENDERLESS

No gender discrimination. There is no difference between masculine and feminine


words. This concept is carried out so consequently that even the pronouns he
and she are expressed with one pronoun: . And the English pronoun it is
translated with a demonstrative pronoun or not at all in Hungarian.

However, nouns expressing professions can be distinguished by adding n


(woman) to the word: tanrn (teacher), brn (judge), titkrn (secretary)

SENTENCE STRUCTURE

Creating sentences is another issue driving foreign students round the bend. Due to
the accusative suffix t, the Hungarian word order allows much more
freedom than a native English speaker is used to. And the moment words are
fitted with all kind of suffixes, they are recognizable anywhere in the sentence
and topic-prominent aspect is born.

Topic-prominent aspect means that the most important or newest piece of


information occupies the beginning of the sentence, which piece of information
can be almost any part of the speech. Of course, there are some rules for creating
sentences, but more about that later. Now lets see some variations to one sentence.

HUNGARIAN SENTENCE
A fi jtszik a kertben a kutyval.

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
The boy is playing with the dog in the garden.

A fi a kertben jtszik a kutyval. The boy is playing with the dog in the garden.
A fi a kutyval jtszik a kertben. The boy is playing with the dog in the garden.
A kertben jtszik a fi a kutyval. It is in the garden where the boy is playing with the dog.
A kutyval jtszik a fi a kertben. It is the dog the boy is playing with in the garden.

And of course, there are even more variations depending on what we think is more
important. In the first three cases, English reveals priority by emphasing the
more important word verbally, not by rearranging the word order like
Hungarian does.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

11

PASSIVE VOICE

Evidence to the fact that Hungarian is a living and breathing language full of energy
lies in the extinction of the passive voice. Everything is expressed with the
active form of the verb.
A hzat egy nappal ezeltt megvettk. The house was sold a day ago.
The literal translation is: They bought the house a day ago. The verb is in its
active form, 3rd person plural even though we dont know who bought the house.
But lets not kid ourselves! Bureaucratic language does exist in Hungarian, too. And
just like in many languages, it is everything but comprehensible.

Thats all I wanted to tell you by way of introduction. I suppose all these peculiarities didnt get you
downhearted, so what are you waiting for? Turn a page and let fun begin!

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

12

PHONETICS
Hungarian uses the Latin alphabet like Germanic and Indo-European languages.

This alphabet consists of an extended set of letters to meet the requirements of


writing typical Hungarian phonemes. This phonemic writing system facilitates the
pronunciation because one letter corresponds to one sound.

Hungarian letters are written with one, two (digraph) or three (trigraph)
characters. Those with more characters are to be considered one letter.
Uppercases and lowercases are indicated like in English.

The alphabet consists of 44 letters, 14 vowels and 30 consonants. Here you


can see the entire alphabet with the Hungarian pronunciation for each letter:

a
a

b
b

c cs d dz dzs e
c cs d dz dzs e

f
ef

g
g

gy h
gy h

i
i

j
j

k
k

l
el

ly
ely

m
em

n
en

ny
eny

o
o

p
p

q
k

r
er

s
es

sz
esz

t
t

ty
ty

u
u

v
w
v dupla v

x
y
z
iksz ipszilon z

zs
zs

vowels

consonants

barely used consonants

never used alone, only with other consonants

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

13

CONSONANTS IN DETAILS
Consonants with no problem:

bdfklmnptvz

Grouping can be done like this:


voiced
unvoiced

b
p

d
t

Difference in meaning:

dz dzs g
c cs k

gy v
ty f

z zs
sz s

lb (leg, foot)
lp (moor)

kz (hand)
ksz (ready)

Hungarian consonants can be doubled, too. This phenomenon is called GEMINATION . What it
means is that doubled consonants must be pronounced doubled, however, they are not part of
the alphabet.

Gemination goes like this:


one consonant gets doubled

b  bb, c  cc
two and three consonants are only doubled with the first character

cs  ccs, dzs  ddzs


Consonants with two characters are also called digraphs: cs, dz, gy, ly, ny, sz, ty, zs
There is only one consonant with three characters, also called trigraph: dzs
Difference in meaning:

hal (fish)
hall (to hear)

megy (to go)


meggy (sour cherry)

GEMINATION MUST NOT BE APPLIED IN COMPOUND WORDS! Example:

jegygyr = jegy + gyr (wedding ring)


If the final consonant of the first word is the same as the first consonant of the second
word, then those CONSONANTS ARE WRITTEN OUT SEPARATELY (like in jegygyr).

And now lets see the pronuncation of the Hungarian consonants!


I dont discuss them in alphabetical order, rather as the paper size lets me.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

14

c
Always pronounced as in: TSUNAMI, ITS.
NEVER SAID LIKE C IN CAT OR C IN PRESENCE!
Practise the phoneme c with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
cica
cukor
ceruza
cl

(kitten)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

kelepce
lc
citrom
cg

(trap)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

cip
cm
cinege
comb

(shoe)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

cs
Always pronounced as in: CHANGE
Practise the phoneme cs with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
csak
csald
csapat
csend

(just, only)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

csata
kapocs
karcs
cs

(battle)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

szerencse
ecset
csoda
tacsk

(luck, fortune)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

dz-dzs
DZ = Pronounced as: HUDSON

DZS = Pronounced as: JUNGLE, GENDER

madzag
bodza
edz

lndzsa
dzsungel
bridzs

(string)
(______________)
(______________)

(spear)
(______________)
(______________)

DZ and DZS are to be found in just a few words. Some more words: dzsem (jam), dzsessz (jazz)
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

15

g
Pronounced as: GET
NEVER SAID LIKE G IN GENDER OR G IN GENRE!
Practise the phoneme g with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
gond
gz
gp

(problem)
(______________)
(______________)

gomb
agg
tag

(button)
(______________)
(______________)

gondol
gz
gumi

(to think)
(______________)
(______________)

gy
Pronounced as: DUTY, DUKE
DUTY AND DUKE SAID WITH BRITISH PRONUNCATION!
Practise the phoneme gy with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
gyenge
egy
gyerek

(weak)
(______________)
(______________)

agy
gy
fagy

(brain)
(______________)
(______________)

gyalog
angyal
hagy

(on foot)
(______________)
(______________)

h
Pronounced as: HIT
IT IS NEVER A MUTE SOUND except at the end of these words: rh, dh, mh, h
potroh
doh
juh
dh

(abdomen)
(______________)
(______________)
(anger)

haj
hold
otthon

mh (bee)

(hair)
(______________)
(______________)

tehn
Hol?
Hogy?

rh

(hunger)

(cow)
(______________)
(______________)

(mange, itch)

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

16

j-ly
J and LY = Always pronounced as in: YELLOW
No difference in their pronuncation. Due to historical reasons, some words are written
with J, others with LY. There is no rule for it. Such words must be memorized!
Practise the phonemes j and ly with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up
the missing English words in a dictionary.
j
jelen
jn
jegy
jv
ajak
talaj
zaj
baj
jr
szj
haj

(good)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

lyuk
klyha
glya
gally
tartly
aply
dagly
foly
szemly
gereblye
gerely
hely

(hole)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

The only word beginning with LY is lyuk!

ny
Pronounced as: NEW or the Spanich word SEOR
NEW SAID WITH BRITISH PRONUNCATION!
Practise the phoneme ny with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
nyak
anya
nyl
edny

(neck)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

nyit
enyhe
szegny
nyr

(to open)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

szekrny
genny
enym
asszony

(cupboard)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

17

r
Pronounced as: ROLL, RUBBER.
IT IS NOT AS ROLLED AS THE SPANISH R, BUT IT IS ALWAYS PRONOUNCED!
Practise the phoneme r with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
rdi
rag
rak
raktr

(radio)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

r
tr
remny
merev

(vein)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

tart
varr
reggel
takar

(to hold)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

ty
Pronounced as: STEW, TUNA.
THE T IN STEW AND TUNA SAID WITH BRITISH PRONUNCIATION!!!
Practise the phoneme ty with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
tyk
szatyor
petty
hatty

(hen)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

sekrestye
hetyke
atya
ltty

(vestry)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

ch
Pronounced as: LACHEN (a German word).
IN EVERYDAY LANGUAGE IT IS SAID LIKE A SIMPLE H!!!
This c+h combination is only present in loan-words and extremely rare. Two words youll surely
see somtime: technika (technique) mechanika (mechanics)
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

18

zs
Pronounced as: GENRE, PLEASURE.
Z+S ALWAYS MEANS THIS SOUND = ZS!!!
Practise the phoneme zs with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
zseb
zsk
zsemle
zsr

(pocket)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

zsold
zsr
dzsl
darzs

(soldiers pay)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

zsaru
zsarnok
pezseg
garzs

(cop)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

qwxy
These letters are to be found in foreign words and/or they are also transcribed.

is transcribed when the foreign word has QU in it: QU = KV


kvantum (quantum)

is used in just a few words and said like the simple v!


watt (watt)

WC  vc (toilet)

is used in loan-words. Its like x in sex, never like in xenophobe!


szex (sex)

akvrium (aquarium)

maximum (maximum)

fax (fax)

galaxis (galaxy)

is used only to make the consonants g, l, n, t unvoiced/mellow: gy, ly, ny, ty.
The letter y itself cannot be pronounced!

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19

s
Always pronounced as in: SHIP, ASHTON.
THE SIMPLE HUNGARIAN S IS EQUAL TO THE S+H COMBINATION IN ENGLISH!!!
Practise the phoneme s with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
s
sajt
sas
trs

(salt)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

sor (line)
sport (______________)
stt (______________)
seb (______________)

stor
lassan
semmi
mese

(tent)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

sz
Always pronounced as in: SEA, ESCAPE.
THE HUNGARIAN S+Z COMBINATION IS EQUAL TO THE SIMPLE S IN ENGLISH!!!
Practise the phoneme sz with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
sz
szem
asztal
szesz

(word)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

szeg
lesz
sz
keksz

(line)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

szex
elhisz
iszik
eszik

(sex)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

sell
szell

(mermaid)
(breeze)

s vs. sz
Hungarian S+Z = English S
Hungarian S = English S+H
s
sz

(salt)
(word)

sr (mud)
szr (stem)

sl (scarf)
szl (string)

So be careful! We understand this: Minden utca vgn sarok. There is a corner at the end of
every street. We also understand this: Minden utca vgn szarok. I shit at the end of every
street. However, we wont think you should be proud of that ! The word sarok means corner, but
szarok means I shit.

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20

MORE ABOUT GEMINATION


You already know that when a Hungarian consonant suffers gemination, only the first character is
doubled! Remember?
B  BB

CS  CCS

DZS  DDZS

Now lets take a look at some words with doubled consonants! Some of them have a different
meaning when a consonant is doubled in them.
eset

(case)

esett

(he fell)

hason

(prone)

hasson

(itd better have an effect)

szl

(string)

szll

(to fly)

kasza

(scythe)

kassza

(cash register)

kel

(to get up)

kell

(to have to)

Other words only have a doubled consonant in them and dont exist with a single consonant:
Tessk!

(There you are!)

hibbant

(crazy)

kattint

(to click)

robban

(to blow up)

akkor

(then)

kettesben (together)

HOMONYMS
Homonyms are words with the same form, but with more than one meaning.
vr

(to wait)

vr

(castle)

(flood)

(price)

mh

(bee)

mh

(womb)

lp

(to step)

lp

(spleen)

(to grow)

(woman)

szn

(to feel pity)

szn

(sledge)

kar

(arm)

kar

(faculty)

br

(though)

br

(pub, bar)

tz

(to pin)

tz

(fire)

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21

VOWELS IN DETAILS
The very first thing you should remember is this:

THERE ARE NO DIPHTHONGS IN HUNGARIAN!



EVERY VOWEL IS SPELLED SEPARATELY!
There are 14 vowels in Hungarian. Grouping can be done like this:

by articulation

Difference in meaning

ei
deep a o u

szl (wind)
szl (string)

by lenght

Difference in meaning

high

short
long

aeiou

ver (to beat, to hit)


vr (blood)

by accents (diacritics)
Short vowels with no accent
Short vowels with one or two dots
Long vowels with a stroke
Long vowels with two strokes

aeou
i

But most importantly, the accents on the top of the vowels are NOT SYLLABLE ACCENTS !

Those graphic accents merely indicate if the vowel is short or long!

Note that English uses the term front and back vowel, while Hungarian talks about high and deep
vowels. So I will refer to the vowels like Hungarian does: high and deep!
And now lets see the pronunciation of the Hungarian vowels!

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22

a
The only reasonable English example is: WHAT.
IT HAS NO CORRELATION TO ANY KIND OF O!!!
Practise the phoneme a with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
alma
ablak
anyag
alap
adag
avar
arany
apa
anya

(apple)
(window)
(material)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

kalap
szalag
radar
csavar
galamb
hagyma
macska
kaland
szabad

(hat)
(ribbon, band)
(radar)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

sas
talp
vaj
gally
nagy
fa
fagy
fal
nyak

(eagle)
(sole)
(butter)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: CUT, SHUT.


However, it is ALWAYS A LONG SOUND like in SPA.
Practise the phoneme with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
ll
l
r
cs
gy
s
t
rt
g

(chin)
(artificial)
(price)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

lb
brnd
hz
sl
gyr
szll
kr
lny
vr

(leg, foot)
(fantasy)
(house)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

brny
htrny
ltvny
blvny
szlls
lls
rcs
vgy
gym

(lamb)
(disadvantage)
(spectacle)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

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23

e
Pronounced as: GET, SET, BED.
Practise the phoneme e with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
terem
ember
medve

(room)
(______________)
(______________)

gyerek
eke
meredek

(child)
(______________)
(______________)

szeret
telek
kerek

(to love)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: FAKE or the German word SEE.


Do not form your lips to say y at the end of fake!
The Hungarian is quite the same, but without that
y at the end!
TRY TO SAY MAY WITHOUT THE Y!
Practise the phoneme with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
n
kp
flnk

(I)
(______________)
(______________)

tl
r
mr

(winter)
(______________)
(______________)

szl
szp
np

(wind)
(______________)
(______________)

e vs.
Practise the phonemes e- with these words by repeating at least ten times. Look up the missing
English words in a dictionary.
ebd
szegny
edny
kerk
szekrny
egr

(lunch)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

nek
bke
let
tnyleg
rszeg
cserp

keresztrejtvny (______________________)

(song)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

tv
mrtk
kss
flelem
rzs
rejtly

(TV)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

kpregny

(______________________)

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24

i
Pronounced as: HIT, FIT, SIT.
NEVER SAID LIKE I IN LIGHT!
Practise the phoneme short i with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
itt
lift
kicsi
titok
bicikli

(here)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

ing
piros
finom
illat
kilincs

(shirt)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

tilos
hitel
irat
hivatal
bilincs

(forbidden)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: SHEET, MEET.


Practise the phoneme long with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
r
kn
s
rm
sn

(to write)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

hd
dj
n
csny
ny

(bridge)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

r
szn
hv
sr
csk

(Irish)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

i vs.
Verbs ending with the suffix t are perfect to practise the difference between short i and long .
Practise the phonemes i- with these words by repeating at least ten times. Look up the missing
English words in a dictionary.
rikt
pirt
vist

(to glare)
(______________)
(______________)

kicsinyt
izzt
sikt

(to reduce the size)


(______________)
(______________)

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

25

o
Pronounced as: HOT, ROD.
ALWAYS SAID LIKE HOT, ROD WITH BRITISH PRONUNCATION!!!
Practise the phoneme short o with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
ott
fog
boldog
dolog

(there)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

kopog
rom
toll
doboz

(to knock)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

orr
sok
torok
homok

(nose)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: NOSE, OAK.


DO NOT ROUND YOUR LIPS TO SAY U AT THE END OF O IN NOSE!
Practise the phoneme long with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
ra
t
s
szda

(hour, watch)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

kr
rzsa
szzat
mka

(disease)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

takar
tanul
h
szl

(blanket)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

o vs. and the difference between a and o


Practise the phonemes o- (plus a) with these words by repeating at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
olcs
bors
dobog

(cheap)
(______________)
(______________)

szlloda
voda
asszony

(hotel)
(______________)
(______________)

szoba
csoda
torna

(room)
(______________)
(______________)

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26


Pronounced as: EARLY, FUR, SIR.
Practise the phoneme short with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
rm
krm
fld
t

(joy)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

vrs
knyv
szg
jn

(red)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

trk
rk
kszn
kl

(Turkish)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: IT IS THE LONG VERSION OF SHORT !


Practise the phoneme long with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.

br
n
szl

(he, she)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

r
szr
rt
b

(guard)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

fed
eserny
erd
feny

(lid)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

vs.
Practise the phonemes - and o- with these words by repeating at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
brnd
fnk
szrs

(suitcase)
(______________)
(______________)

dzsl
gzlg
klt

(to carouse)
(______________)
(______________)

o- vs. -
sofr
zsonglr
szt

(driver)
(______________)
(______________)

j n
lpor
kdfolt

(hot woman)
(______________)
(______________)

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27

u
Pronounced as: PUT, BOOK.
Practise the phoneme short u with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
un
fut
falu

(to be annoyed)
(______________)
(______________)

furulya
ceruza
kutya

(flute)
(______________)
(______________)

uborka
unoka
jut

(cucumber)
(______________)
(______________)

Pronounced as: SHOOT, LOOP, MOOD.


Practise the phoneme short with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up the
missing English words in a dictionary.
t
bcs
fj

(road)
(______________)
(______________)

r
cscs
hg

(gentleman)
(______________)
(______________)

mlt
tan
nyl

(past)
(______________)
(______________)

-
= Pronounced as: the German word MTTER or the French word TU.
= Pronounced as: IT IS THE LONG VERSION OF SHORT !
Practise the phoneme short and long with these words by repeating them at least ten times.
Look up the missing English words in a dictionary.
l
fl
tndr
dl

(to sit)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

szrke
szl
gy
res

(gray)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

r
bn
tz
szz

(space)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

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28

MORE EXERCISES ON VOWELS


Practise the phonemes a--o- with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up
the missing English words in a dictionary.
tanr
kanl
bart
csald
llat
llam
ram
jrat

(teacher)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

alom
karom
atom
sarok
vonal
tolat
korall
vonat

(litter)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

lom
szlloda
voda
vacsora
adomny
fokozat
korcsolya
vllalat

(dream)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

Practise the phonemes --- with these words by repeating them at least ten times. Look up
the missing English words in a dictionary.
frt
rgy
dh
rgy
f
sr
bz
gyjt

(cluster)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

knny
szrny
kls
zlltt
fll
dbrg
ldgl
ggyg

(easy, light)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)
(______________)

VOWEL HARMONY
Vowel harmony is a grammatical law Hungarian is completely based on.
High vowels:
Deep vowels:

ei
aou

Hungarian vowels are either high or deep, that is Hungarian has high- and
deep-vowel words.
There are also mixed words with deep and high vowels in them, but at the end
of the day youll have to decide which type those words are (high or deep).
If a word has e, , i, + a deep-vowel, then that word is a deep-vowel word. Example:
tnyr (plate); irat (document); papr (paper); elefnt (elephant)
Vowel harmony means that high-vowel words take high-vowel suffixes and
deep-vowel words take deep-vowel suffixes.

The word hz is a deep-vowel word: hz ( is a deep vowel)


So it takes a deep-vowel suffix -ban: a hzban in the house
The word kert is a high-vowel word: kert (e is a high vowel)
So it takes a high-vowel suffix -ben: a kertben in the garden
Thats vowel harmony for now! More about it when discussing nouns and plurals.
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29

WHICH SYLLABLE IS ACCENTUATED?

!
Examples:

The syllable accent in all Hungarian words,


whether short or long,
falls on the very first syllable!

kz, elem, jutalom, teljestmny, alkalmazhatsg

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30

NOUNS AND PLURAL FORMS


Hungarian nouns:

describe living beings, inanimate objects, ideas and abstract things


are not masculine or feminine  no gender discrimination
are countable and uncountable  but the distinction is more loose compared
to English

Their classification goes like this: proper nouns and common nouns

Proper nouns:

proper names
names of animals
geographical names
heavenly bodies
institutions
titles, artistic works

(Pter, Anna)
(Bodri, Villm)
(Eurpa, Mecsek)
(Nap, Fld, Mars)
(Nemzeti Sznhz)
(Egri Csillagok)

Common nouns:

individual names
names of materials
collective nouns
abstract nouns

(iskola, ruhz)
(vz, fm, s)
(ndas, tzoltsg)
(szpsg, nmasg)

NOUNS AND THEIR PLURAL FORMS

Only common sense sets the limit to what Hungarian noun you make plural. Example: vz water.
An obviously uncountable noun, but in a more abstract sense vz can be made plural.
Japn vizeken hajzik. Hes sailing at Japanese sea.
Literally: Hes sailing on Japanese waters. It sounds silly in English, but its just fine in Hungarian.
Sticking to this example (vz), you can also make uncountable nouns plural if you talk
about different types of water. Example: I like the mineral water of X and Y brand, but I dont
like the mineral water of Z brand. And so:
Azok a vizek zlenek, de amaz nem. - I like those waters, but I dont like that water.
THE PLURAL IS FORMED WITH THE PLURAL ENDING:

-K

Nouns ending in a vowel simply take the plural ending k


Nouns ending in a consonant take the plural ending k with a link vowel for
easier pronunciation. In this case, the plural can be ok, -ak, -ek, -k depending on
whether certain nouns are high- or deep-vowel words.

Of course, there are exceptions.


And now well take a look at regular and irregular nouns in the plural.
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31

GROUP 1: REGULAR WORDS WITH A OR E IN THE LAST OPEN SYLLABLE


OPEN SYLLABLE MEANS THAT THE VOWEL IS NOT FOLLOWED BY A CONSONANT.

Such words go through the following change:

a  + -k
e  + -k
apa
anya
akna
kapa






apk (fathers)
anyk (mothers)
aknk (mines)
kapk (hoes)

megye
vese
zene
teve






megyk (counties)
vesk (reins)
zenk (musics)
tevk (camels)

This rules is valid for all Hungarian words of this kind, but it only goes for a and e!
If a word ends in any other vowel with an open syllable, simply add k to it:
kapuk (front doors)

ernyk (umbrellas)

kocsik (cars)

and so on
Practise making these words plural with the following examples. You only need to give the proper
plural form. An example is given.
labda
marha
kaja
tanya
szarka
gatya
banya
mama
baba
ara
akta
dara
csiga
ima
liba
csra

labdk
marh________
kaj________
tany________
szark________
gaty________
bany________
mam________
bab________
ar________
akt________
dar________
csig________
im________
lib________
csr________

(balls)
(cattle)
(food)
(farm)
(magpie)
(drawers)
(hags)
(mothers)
(babies)
(fiances)
(documents)
(grits)
(snails)
(prays)
(geese)
(germs)

cssze
csirke
bibe
cserje
fejsze
csiperke
mese
medve
lepke
jegenye
elme
pille
pihe
eke
trpe
remete

csszk
csirk________
bib________
cserj________
fejsz________
csiperk________
mes________
medv________
lepk________
jegeny________
elm________
pill________
pih________
ek________
trp________
remet________

(cups)
(chickens)
(stigmas)
(shrubs)
(axes)
(champignon)
(tales)
(bears)
(butterflies)
(poplars)
(minds)
(moths)
(flocks)
(ploughs)
(dwarfs)
(hermits)

NOTE!
The words gatya and kaja are slang terms. The everyday term for gatya is nadrg, and for kaja is
tel.

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32

GROUP 2: REGULAR HIGH-VOWEL WORDS (E I )

regular high-vowel words ending in a consonant, BUT NOT HAVING IN


THE LAST SYLLABLE take the plural ending: -EK
emberek (people)
szkek (chairs)
hitelek (credits)

fzetek (notebooks)
pletek (buildings)
tletek (ideas)

regular high-vowel words ending in a consonant, AND HAVING IN THE


LAST SYLLABLE take the plural ending: -K
kldkk (navels)
gymlcsk (fruits)
gynkk (agents)

erdk (fortresses)
kencsk (ointments)
rednyk (shutters)

Some regular monosyllabic high-vowel words ending in one or two


consonants AND ONLY HAVING take the plural ending: -K.
I recommend learning these words because if you know them, other words with the
same quality but with the plural -ek will be easy to deal with.
tkk (marrows)
hsk (heroes)
gykk (roots)

gmbk (orbs)
trpk (elves)
tmbk (blocks)

csrk (barns)
zrk (troubles)
dhk (angers)

Example for such words with the plural -ek: vek (belts), flek (ears), fldek (lands)

high-vowel words take high-vowel suffixes, and if so, the plural is always EK!
-vny
-mny
-s
-et
-sg
-zet

emelvnyek
lmnyek
krdsek
emeletek
trsgek
mennyezetek

(platforms)
(experiences)
(questions)
(floors, stories)
(areas)
(ceilings)

Practise making high-vowel words plural with the following examples. You only need to give the
proper plural form -ek or -k. An example is given.
ligetek
kp________
rgsz________
sziget________
sznyeg________
zenet________
ts________
trk________
brnd________
kerlet________

(groves)
(pictures)
(archeologists)
(islands)
(carpets)
(messages)
(blows)
(Turkish)
(suitecases)
(districts)

rgk
dg________
kb________
fnk________
grg________
bn________
sn________
gy________
szrp________
br________

(lumps)
(carrions)
(cubes 3rd power)
(bosses)
(Greek)
(sins)
(hedgehogs)
(affairs)
(syrups)
(skins)

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

33

GROUP 3: REGULAR DEEP-VOWEL WORDS (A O U )

regular deep-vowel words ending in a consonant, take the plural ending: -OK
llatok (animals)
asztalok (tables)
utasok (passengers)

three deep-vowel words with short o and long take the plural: -AK
tollak (pens)

okok (reasons)
lapok (papers)
bartok (friends)

fogak (teeth)

lak (kennels)

Some regular monosyllabic deep-vowel words ending in one or two


consonants AND HAVING A, take the plural ending: -AK.
I recommend learning these words because if you know them, other words with the
same quality but with the plural -ok will be easy to deal with.
hzak (houses)
kdak (bath-tubs)
falak (walls)

talpak (soles)
sarjak (offsprings)
gallyak (twigs)

Example for such words with the plural -ok: kardok (swords), zajok (noises)

deep-vowel words take deep-vowel suffixes, and if so, the plural is always OK!
-vny
-mny
-s
-at
-sg
-zat

utalvnyok
tallmnyok
laksok
kapcsolatok
hazugsgok
talapzatok

(assignments)
(inventions)
(apartments)
(relationships)
(lies)
(pedestals)

Practise making deep-vowel words plural with the following examples. You only need to give the
proper plural form -ak or -ok. An example is given.
lnyok
pad________
szag________
baj________
mondat________
vonat________
galamb________
busz________
villamos________
barlang________

(girls)
(benches)
(smells)
(troubles)
(sentences)
(trains)
(pigeons)
(buses)
(trams)
(caves)

szjak
vll________
nyak________
trs________
lnc________
lb________
szrny________
stand________
rag________
dal________

(mouth)
(shoulders)
(necks)
(mates)
(chains)
(legs)
(wings)
(stands, stalls)
(suffixes)
(songs)

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34

GROUP 4: DROP-VOWEL NOUNS


Drop-vowel nouns are words losing the vowel of the last syllable when in plural.
Example for formation:
Step 1:

base / singular

rok

(ditch)

Step 2:

adding the plural ok

rokok

Step 3:

eliminating the last vowel 

rokok

Step 4:

final word / plural

rkok

(ditches)

NOTE! The link vowel is o because the last vowel eliminated is o!


Futhermore, nouns ending with the suffixes ELEM, -ALOM are typical drop-vowel words. So
the formula is:
-ELEM

-ELMEK

-ALOM

-ALMAK

Example: jutalom  jutalmak (rewards); flelem  flelmek (fears)


Practise making drop-vowel words plural with these words. Give the proper plural form.
eper
lom
tok
bagoly
bokor
burok
cukor
csokor
dolog
farok
gdr
hurok
kapocs
karom
kapor
kebel
klyk
krm
majom
marok
meder
bl
kl
sarok

eprek
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________
_______________

(strawberries)
(dreams)
(curses)
(owls)
(bushes)
(shells)
(sugars)
(bouquets)
(things)
(tails)
(pits)
(loops)
(clips)
(claws)
(dills)
(breasts)
(kids)
(fingernails)
(monkies)
(hollow of the hand)
(watercourses)
(bays)
(fists)
(corners)

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35

GROUP 5: THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED


Only a couple of nouns with IN THE LAST CLOSED SYLLABLE go through some
changes when in plural. Those long vowels become short vowels a e i u ! With
such words, the plural for deep-vowel nouns is AK, for high-vowel nouns EK.
Formation:
deep-vowel words:

high-vowel words:

becomes a

kanl  kanalak (spoons)

becomes u

t  utak (roads)

becomes e

egr  egerek (mice)

becomes i

vz  vizek (waters)

becomes

tz  tzek (fires)

Practise making such words plural with these words. Give the proper plural form.
madr
pohr
bogr
szamr
kosr
darzs
parzs
nyr
sr
r
kt
ld
rd
nyl
n
nyl
hd
fedl
tehn
cserp
kenyr
verb
lgy
tl
szl
g
szz

madarak
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
______________
fedelek
______________
______________
______________
______________
legyek
______________
______________
______________
______________

(birds)
(glasses)
(bugs)
(donkies)
(baskets)
(wasps)
(embers)
(summers)
(muds)
(gentlemen)
(wells)
(geese)
(rods)
(rabbits)
(tendons)
(arrows)
(bridges)
(covers)
(cows)
(tiles)
(bread)
(sparrows)
(flies)
(winters)
(winds)
(skies)
(virgins)

PAY ATTENTION TO THESE WORDS!

fazk
derk

fazekak
derekak

(pots)
(waists)

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36

GROUP 6: MIXED WORDS


Mixed nouns are words with both high and deep vowel in them. They are mixed due to
containing short i, long , e or + a deep vowel. That is:
i + deep vowel = deep-vowel word
+ deep vowel = deep-vowel word
e + deep vowel = deep-vowel word
+ deep vowel = deep-vowel word
With careful observation, we could say that these mixed words always turn out deep words!
Practise making such words plural with these words. Give the proper plural form.
i, + deep vowel
iratok
szlltmny_____
kavics_____
radr_____
papr_____
pzsit_____
szilnk_____

e, + deep vowel
(documents)
(shipments)
(pebbles)
(erasers)
(papers)
(lawns)
(splinters)

stnyok
jtk_____
szerszm_____
szomszd______
rnyk_____
ajndk_____
gallr_____

(avenues)
(toys)
(tools)
(neighbours)
(shadows)
(gifts)
(collars)

And here we should mention some monosyllabic nouns with long . Some are deep-vowel
words, others are high-vowel words. They have to be memorized.
-OK

-EK

gykok (lizards)
cskok (stripes)
skok (planes)
spok (whistles)
srok (tombs)
knok (pains)

csnyek (pranks)
szvek (hearts)
rmek (rhymes)
nyek (gums)
vek (archs)
cmek (titles)
rek (Irish)
dszek (ornaments)
hrek (news)
snek (rails)
zek (tastes)
sznek (colours)

-AK
djak (awards)
jak (bows)
szjak (straps)

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37

GROUP 7: V-WORDS
V-words are monosyllabic words getting a v inserted when in plural. Most of the time, the
vowel is shortened in the plural form. One exception is: m mvek (factories, works)
l

lovak

(horses)

becomes o + v inserted

tavak

(lakes)

becomes A + v inserted

fvek

(grasses)

becomes + v inserted

ny

nyvek

(maggots)

becomes + v inserted

cs

csvek

(tubes)

becomes + v inserted

kvek

(rocks, stones)

becomes + v inserted

tvek

(stems, roots)

becomes + v inserted

Furthermore, there are a few nouns with the same charateritic as v-words, but they have
two plural forms: one regular and one irregular. Sometimes there is a difference in their
meaning.
mag

magok

magvak

(seeds)

lk

levek

(juices)

tet

tetk

tetvek

(cooties)

falu

faluk

falvak

(villages)

hamu

hamuk

hamvak

(ashes)

fatty

fattyk

fattyak

(children born out of wedlock)

sz

szk

szavak

(words)

daru

daruk

darvak

(cranes)

The plurals for sz, daru, hamu have a different meaning.


sz:

szk is used with grammatical terms  krdszk (interrogative words)


szavak is used with general terms  szp szavak (nice words)

daru:

daruk refers to the machine  A daruk dolgoznak. (The cranes are working.)
darvak refers to the animals  A darvak replnek. (The cranes are flying.)

hamu:

hamuk refers to the ash of a cigarette


hamvak refers to the ashes of a dead person

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38

GROUP 8: ADOPTED WORDS


Adopted words are also called loan-words. These are foreign words already adopted to the
Hungarian writing system. Their plural form may still vary, but there is no difference in their
meaning.
fotelek / fotelok
hotelek / hotelok

(armchairs)
(hotels)

Note that Hungarian likes to assimilate foreign words provided their use has become prevalent
enough!
dizjnok
mlek
hardverek
szoftverek

(designs)
(e-mails)
(hardwares)
(softwares)

GROUP 9: COMPOUND WORDS


Compound words consist of two different words to create one. They are deep or highvowel words according to what characteristic the last vowel has!
hz + pts = hzptsek
rvid + nadrg = rvidnadrgok
rend + r = rendrk
fny + kard = fnykardok

(house constructions)
(shorts; literally: short trousers)
(police officers; literally: order guards)
(light-sabers)

SUPPLEMENTAL
Base

Plural

Type

Meaning

frfi
ujj
arany

frfiak
ujjak
aranyak

deep-vowel noun!
deep-vowel noun!
plural ak!

man-men
fingers
golds

borj
varj
fi

borjak
varjak
fik, fiak

plural ak!
plural ak!
fik = boys BUT fiak = sons

calf-calves
crows
boy-boys-sons

csend/csnd
csepp/cspp
petty/ptty

csendek/csndek
cseppek/csppek
pettyek/pttyk

e and still changing


e and still changing
e and still changing

silence
drops
spots

Compound words only have the e version of these words: csendhborts (riot), cseppfolys
(liquid)
cl
hj
llek

clok
hjak
lelkek

deep-vowel noun!
deep-vowel noun!
drop-vowel word +
first vowel shortens

purposes, goals
shells, peels
souls

szeg
szg

szegek
szgek

plural ek!

nails
angles

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39

ACCUSATIVE CASE
What is accusative case?

It is a very prevalent case in the Hungarian language.


It allows the speaker to create sentences living their own lives, meaning a
considerably free word order compared to English.

The ending for accusative case is:

The English word order is much stricter because the object has a specific place in the
sentence in order that it can be recognized as object.
The Hungarian accusative case is called direct object in English.

-t

Example:
I see the river. Ltom a folyt.
What do I see? The river. River is the direct object following the transitive verb to see. In
this case, Hungarian makes foly (river) accusative:

folyt

MAKING NOUNS ACCUSATIVE ACCORDING TO PLURAL FORMS


The method itself is not a big thing, actually:
As a rule, all you need to do is remember how to make nouns plural.
If you know the plural, replace the k ending with the t ending
while the link vowel is the same as in its plural form.
Example:

f  fvek  fvet
Practise making nouns accusative with these words. Just write out the entire word in accusative
case based on the plural form. One example is given.
csald
szellem
kldk
llat
toll
fog
sl
tenyr
derk
ujj
fi
hj
szg

csaldok
szellemek
kldkk
llatok
tollak
fogak
slak
tenyerek
derekak
ujjak
fik/fiak
hjak
szgek

csaldot
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________

szivacs
szndk
dj
hd
szv
t
m
sz
hatalom
borj
csnd
llek
szeg

szivacsok
szndkok
djak
hidak
szvek
tavak
mvek
szk/szavak
hatalmak
borjak
csndek
lelkek
szegek

szivacsot
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________
____________________

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40

RULE 1
Words ending in j, l, ly, n, ny, r, s, sz, z
take the accusative ending t without a link vowel
even if the plural suggests you need one!
Take a look at these examples:
j
l
aply
szn
lny
r
hs
sz
mez

jek
lek
aplyok
sznok
lnyok
rk
hsok
szok
mezek

jt
lt
aplyt
sznt
lnyt
rt
hst
szt
mezt

(night)
(edge)
(ebb)
(sledge)
(girl)
(guard)
(meat)
(ace)
(shirt)

RULE 2
RULE 2 SAYS THAT RULE 1 DOES NOT APPLY TO IRREGULAR NOUNS!!!
Watch these examples and youll see what I mean!
Regular nouns
baj
kr
bl
br
br

bajok
krok
blok
brek
brok

Irregular nouns
bajt
krt
blt
brt
brt

(trouble)
(damage)
(ball, dance)
(wages)
(bar, pub)

vaj
zr
sl
szl
nyr

vajak
zrak
slak
szelek
nyarak

vajat
zrat
slat
szelet
nyarat

(butter)
(lock)
(scarf)
(wind)
(summer)

and so on
You see that those regular nouns end in consonants given in Rule 1, therefore they have to abide
by this rule. However, those irregular nouns also end in such consonants, but their
accusative case is strictly based on their irregular plural form! It means that you just
replace k with t in those irregular nouns.
Another words we havent talked about yet is: pr. As a noun, it means couple (A couple is
kissing on the bench.). As an indefinite numeral, it means a couple of or a few people (A couple
of children are playing over there.).
This word has two plural forms, and so two accusative cases.
As a noun:
As a numeral:

plural ending ok
plural ending ak

 prok
 prak

accusative ending t
accusative ending at

 prt
 prat

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41

PLURAL FOR ACCUSATIVE CASE


Its staggeringly simple!
Step 1: Make the noun plural.
Step 2: Make the already plural noun accusative with a link vowel if needed.
And so the deep-vowel nouns take at, high-vowel nouns take et after the plural. This rule is
valid for both regular and irregular nouns:
embereket, hzakat, lovakat, szobrokat, teheneket, frfiakat

DATIVE CASE
Dative case means: something is done FOR / TO something / somebody.

It is called indirect object in English.


English equivalents: preposition for/to; indirect object (I give him a book.)

The dative suffixes are:

THESE SUFFIXES DO NOT REQUIRE ANY LINK VOWEL!


Making plural nouns dative is easy, too:

-nak (for deep-vowel words)


-nek (for high-vowel words)

Step 1: Make the noun plural.


Step 2: Make the already plural noun dative with no link vowel.
Examples:
Ajndkot vettem a gyerekeknek.

I bought a gift for the children.


I bought the [children] a gift.

Elmondom a lnynak, hogy szeretem.

Im telling the [girl] that I love her.

Ne mondj ilyet egy rendrnek!

Dont say such a thing to a police officer!

Az egereknek nem adunk tbb sajtot.

Well give no more cheese to the mice.


Well give the [mice] no more cheese.

NOTE! Indirect object does not exist in Hungarian. You always need the dative suffix nak
or -nek!

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42

ADJECTIVES
Adjectives are words

describing nouns
expressing quality, characteristics, condition, belonging somewhere, fitted
with something

There are two types of adjectives: attributive and predicative.

ATTRIBUTIVE ADJECTIVES
Hungarian attributive adjectives:

precede the noun like in English


under this condition, they are unmarked for case  cannot be declined (plural,
accusative, dative)

Examples:
Singular:
Plural:
Accusative:
Dative:

nagy hz
nagy hzak
nagy hzat
nagy hzaknak

big house
big houses
big house
for big houses

Note that it is always nagy as it is always big in all cases.

PREDICATIVE ADJECTIVES
Hungarian predicative adjectives:

follow the noun and are marked for case  must be declined (plural,
accusative, dative)
The 3rd PS and 3rd PP of the substantive verb (van, vannak) is NOT USED IN
PRESENT TENSE. Any other person and number must be used!

Sing: A hz nagy.

The house is big.

nagy = is big

Plur: A hzak nagyok.

The houses are big.

nagyok = are big

Acc:

-A nagyot.
-The big one.

nagyot = big one

Dat:

-Melyik hzat veszed meg?


-Which house will you buy?

-Melyiknek rlnl?
-A nagynak.
-Which would you like to have? -(For) the big one.

nagynak = for big one

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43

As for the substantive verb


Singular:

n nagy vagyok.
Te nagy vagy.
nagy.
Mi nagyok vagyunk.
Ti nagyok vagytok.
k nagyok.

Plural:

I am tall.
You are tall.
He is/She is tall.
We are tall.
You are tall.
They are tall.

You see the 3rd PS and 3rd PP are not used in present tense. Note that the adjective in such
sentences is predicative, therefore you decline it! Or in other words, the adjective is
marked for case.
Singular:
Plural:

nagy vagyok / vagy / (van)


nagyok vagyunk / vagytok / (vannak)

PLURAL ADJECTIVES
Lets see how you can make adjectives plural. They can be divided in groups just like nouns. Of
course, you only make them plural when predicative.

GROUP 1: ADJECTIVES ENDING IN A VOWEL


a.

adjectives in a, e  A, E BECOMES , like with nouns!


laza lazk (loose)  A cipfzk lazk. The shoe strings are loose.
enyhe enyhk (mild)  A telek enyhk. The winters are mild.

b.

adjectives in long , long take the plural AK, -EK!


hosszak (long), szomorak (sad)  A napok hosszak. The days are long.
knnyek (easy), hek (faithful)  A feladatok knnyek. The tasks are easy.

c.

adjectives in long , long take the plural AK, -EK or K! You choose.
megbzhatak / megbzhatk (trustworthy)
krkedek / krkedk (ostentatious)
A fik megbzhatak. The boys are trustworthy.
A gazdag nk krkedek. Rich women are ostentatious.

GROUP 2: HIGH-VOWEL WORDS

GROUP 3: DEEP-VOWEL WORDS

The plural is: -EK

The standard plural is: -AK!

keskenyek (are narrow)


szeldek (are tame)
gyesek (are able)
szpek (are beautiful)

tgak (are wide, large)


magasak (are tall)
rosszak (are bad)
vkonyak (are narrow)

NOTE! These deep-vowel adjectives take the plural OK:


nagyok (are big)

vastagok (are thick)

boldogok (are happy)

bolondok (are insane)

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44

GROUP 4: ADJECTIVES WITH HIGH OR DEEP SUFFIXES


HIGH-VOWEL SUFFIXES: -EK
-s
-es
-s
-etlen
-telen
-elmes
-nk
-keny
-i
-tt

flsek
tzesek
kznysek
szemtelenek
kellemetlenek
knyelmesek
lnkek
rzkenyek
szziek
kldttek

(are timid)
(are fiery)
(are unconcerned)
(are impudent)
(are inconvenient)
(are comfortable)
(are vivid)
(are sensitive)
(are virginal)
(delegates)

bsak
lzasak
vzlatosak
hasztalanOK
szakadatlanOK
sznalmasak
falnkak
krtkonyak
bartiak
bukottak

(are tristful)
(are feverish)
(are sketchy)
(are useless)
(are unremitting)
(are pitiful)
(are voracious)
(are mischievous)
(are friendly)
(fallen)

DEEP-VOWEL SUFFIXES: -AK OR OK


-s
-as
-os
-ATLAN
-TALAN
-almas
-nk
-kony
-i
-tt

GROUP 5: JUST SOME ADJECTIVES FROM OTHER GROUPS


DROP-VOWEL ADJECTIVE:
btor
btrak

A frfi btor.
A frfiak btrak.

The man is brave.


The men are brave.

nehz
nehezek

A csomag nehz.
A csomagok nehezek.

The luggage is heavy.


The luggages are heavy.

ifj
Ifjak

A fi mg ifj.
A fik mg ifjak.

The boy is still young.


The boys are still young.

LAST SYLLABLE SHORTENED:

THE ADJECTIVE IFJ:

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45

COMPARISON OF ADJECTIVES
POSITIVE DEGREE
 (not) as/soas
(nem) olyan, mint
(nem) ugyanolyan, mint  (not) the sameas, just asas

The preposition mint must be preceded by a comma.


The word mint is the only preposition in Hungarian!
A synonym for olyan can be: annyira, ugyanannyira

Pter olyan okos, mint Dvid.


Pter nem olyan okos, mint Dvid.
Pter ugyanolyan okos, mint Dvid.
Pter nem ugyanolyan okos, mint Dvid.

Peter is as smart as David.


Peter is not so smart as David.
Peter is just as smart as David.
Peter is not just as smart as David.

Pter olyan okos, mint Dvid.


Pter ugyanolyan okos, mint Dvid.

Pter annyira okos, mint Dvid.


Pter ugyanannyira okos, mint Dvid.

=
=

COMPARATIVE DEGREE
(nem)-bb, mint  (not) -er/more than
kevsb, mint  less than

You can replace mint with the suffixes NL, -NL. Either use this or that, but not
both at the same time!
The suffix bb might need a link vowel: -OBB, -ABB, -EBB

Pter nagyobb, mint dm.


Pter nagyobb, dmnl.

Peter is taller than Adam.


Peter is taller than Adam.

Pter nem nagyobb, mint dm.


Pter nem nagyobb dmnl.

Peter is not taller than Adam.


Peter is not taller than Adam.

Pter kevsb nagyobb, mint dm.


Pter kevsb nagyobb dmnl.

Peter is less taller than Adam.


Peter is less taller than Adam.

SUPERLATIVE DEGREE

The definite article must be used at superlative degree just like in English!
Example: a legrosszabb = the worst
A leg- = prefix BUT A leg--bb = circumfix
 (not) the most/ the est
(nem) a leg-bb
mind kzl / kztk / a vilgon  of all / in the world

Pter a legnagyobb.
Dvid a legkisebb.
De Sanyi a legokosabb mind kzl.
De sanyi a legokosabb kztk.
Anna viszont a legdgsebb!
A gulys a legjobb tel a vilgon.

Peter is the tallest.


David is the smallest.
But Alex is the smartest of all.
But Alex is the smartest of all.
Ann, in turn, is the sexiest!
Goulash is the best meal in the world.

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46

IRREGULAR ADJECTIVES WHEN IN COMPARISON


1.

The adjective KICSI cannot be compared at comparative and superlative degree!


Instead the adjective KIS is used.
Positive
kicsi

2.

Comparative
kisebb

Other irregular adjectives are:


j (good)
szp (beautiful)
kevs (little, few)
nehz (heavy, difficult)

3.

Superlative
a legkisebb

hossz (long)
lass (slow)
ifj (young)
knny (easy, light)

btor (brave)
fiatal (young)

Other words (not adjectives) become irregular when in comparison, too:


fent (up)
lent (down)
kint (outside) bent (inside)
hamar (soon) kzpen (in the middle)

These adjectives in details:


EXPLANATION

POSITIVE

COMPARATIVE

SUPERLATIVE

the last vowel shortened:

j
szp
kevs
nehz

jobb
szebb
kevesebb
nehezebb

a legjobb
a legszebb
a legkevesebb
a legnehezebb

some words in , :

hossz
lass
ifj
knny

hosszabb
lassabb
ifjabb
knnyebb

a leghosszabb
a leglassabb
a legifjabb
a legknnyebb

drop-vowel adjective:

btor

btrabb

a legbtrabb

the adjective fiatal:

fiatal

fiatalabb

a legfiatalabb

adverb of time hamar:

hamar

hamarabb

a leghamarabb

fent
lent
bent
kint
kzpen
sok

fels
als
bels
kls
kzps
tbb

a legfels
a legals
a legbels
a legkls
a legtbb

adverbs of place in -s, -s


when in comparison:

and finally sok (many, much):

NOTE! The term for Supreme Court is A Legfelsbb Brsg. Dont ask. Just learn it.
Furthermore, ifj as an adjective is an obsolete word. The word fiatal is used instead. But if you
use it as a noun, you can refer to the youth as az ifjsg.

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47

ACCUSATIVE CASE FOR ADJECTIVES


Just remember the plural form for adjectives (if needed) and attach the accusative ending -t to the
word. Thats all.

SUBJECTIVE SINGULAR:
ACCUSATIVE SINGULAR:
SUBJECTIVE PLURAL:
ACCUSATIVE PLURAL:
COMPARATIVE DEGREE SUBJECTIVE SINGULAR:
COMPARATIVE DEGREE ACCUSATIVE SINGULAR:
COMPARATIVE DEGREE SUBJECTIVE PLURAL:
COMPARATIVE DEGREE ACCUSATIVE PLURAL:

DEEP

HIGH

laza
lazt
lazk
lazkat
lazbb
lazbbat
lazbbak
lazbbakat

enyhe
enyht
enyhk
enyhket
enyhbb
enyhbbet
enyhbbek
enyhbbeket

ADJECTIVAL EXPRESSIONS
Adjectival expressions consist of an adjective and a complement to it:
English
follow or precede the noun

Hungarian
always precede the noun!

Examples:

emberekkel teli busz

bus full of people

es ztatta talaj

soil soaked with rain

vrs haj n

red-haired woman

The best example for a native English speaker is the last one (red-haired woman)
because thats the word order you need to say such constructions with in
Hungarian. Even if English is the exact opposite to it.
You see the last Hungarian word (busz, talaj) is the first English word (bus, soil).

ADJECTIVES DEPRIVED
You can deprive an adjectives with these suffixes: -talan, -telen OR -atlan, -etlen. The English
equivalents can be: un-, in-, -less. The problem is that these suffixes are similar to each other, so
you have to be careful which you use. The adjective szemtelen means impudent, however, the
adjective szemetlen means eyeless (someone has no eyes). Sometimes only one type of these
suffixes can be added to a noun: szertelen = immoderate BUT there is no word like szeretlen!
Some examples:
-TALAN, -TELEN
jellemtelen dishonest
gondtalan care-free
hajlktalan homeless
esztelen
unreasonable

-ATLAN, -ETLEN
akaratlan unintentional
gondatlan careless
eszetlen
crazed

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48

ARTICLES
Like English, Hungarian also uses definite and indefinite articles.

The definite and indefinite articles always keep their form  cannot be
declined in any way!
The indefinite article is often omitted in the singular, always omitted in the
plural. However, sometimes it is expressed in the plural with nhny meaning
some.

Definite: a, az = the
Indefinite: egy = a, an
a
az
egy

is used with words beginning with a consonant:


a hz (the house) a dlutn (the afternoon)
is used with words beginning with a vowel:
az asztal (the table)
az ebd (the lunch)
is the unstressed form of the numeral egy (one):
egy ajt (a door) egy kpeslap (a postcard)

HOW TO USE HUNGARIAN ARTICLES?


NOTE! The English translation may not show the articles because the English use is different. The
following table shows when and how the Hungarian articles are used! S=singular, P = plural.
The definite article must be used as follows:
Determined things S/P:

A knyv a tskban van.


The book is in the bag.
A knyvek a tskban vannak. The books are in the bag.

Generalization S/P:

Az emberek kznysek.
A repl biztonsgos.

People are unconcerned.


Airplanes are safe.

Abstract concept S:

A pnz nem minden.


A szpsgnek ra van.

Money is not everything.


Beauty has its price.

Materials S:

A fa kemny.
A gyurma jl formzhat.

Wood is hard.
Plasticine is very formable.

Species/types S/P:

Szeretem az olasz tsztkat.


Utlom az amerikai kvt.

I like Italian noodles.


I hate American coffee.

Action S:

A futs egszsges.

Running is healthy.

Forms of titles:

Az igazgat urat keresem.

Id like to talk to the director.

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49

Geographical names:

Geographical names
with adjectives:
With the possessive
pronouns:

With the possessive


endings:

Megmssza a Mecseket.
A Balaton gynyr.
A Csendes-cenon van.
Az Egyeslt llamok nagy.

Hes climbing Mecsek.


The Balaton is beautiful.
Hes on the Pacific.
The United States is big.

a romantikus Prizs
a forr Afrika

the romantic Paris


the tropic Africa

Az a hz az v.
Azok az autk az enymek.

That house is hers.


Those cars are mine.

Az hza nagy.
Az n autim gyorsak.

His house is big.


My cars are fast.

The indefinite article must be used as follows:


Undetermined and
unknown things:

Az gyon van egy toll.


Ez egy rgi dal.

There is a pen on the bed.


This is an old song.

The definite and indefinite articles MUST NOT BE USED as follows:


Predicative adjectives,
mainly professions S/P:

A frjem orvos.
A fik tanulk.

My husband is a doctor.
The boy are students.

Reggel kvt fz.


ppen rdit hallgat.

He perks coffee in the morning.


Hes listening to the radio.

Bort krek.
Almt veszek.

Id like some wine.


Im buying some apples.

Made of:

Az asztal fbl van.

The table is made of wood.

There is, There are:

Van iskola a sarkon.


Itt nincsenek hzak.

There is a school on the corner.


There are no houses around here.

To have:

Van pnzem.

I have money.

Proper names:

Dvid egyetemre jr.

Davids attending college.

Olaszorszg szp.
Sydney napos.
zsia egzotikus.

Italy is beautiful.
Sydney is sunny.
Asia is exotic.

Nouns expressing an
entire action S:

When English uses


a, some S:

Geographical names
not like organizations:

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50

POSSESSION
DO I HAVE TO HAVE?
No, you dont. Actually, you dont specifically have anything in Hungarian. As a matter of fact,
there may be only things at your disposal, things existing for you. Compare how English and
Hungarian deal with their own approach:
to have

van neki

I have a house.

Nekem van egy hzam.

I have no house. / I dont have any house.



Nekem nincs hzam.

The literal translation for the Hungarian sentence is:


There is (not) a house at my disposal. OR There is (not) a house for me.
NOTE! Hungarian also has a verb equivalent to to have: birtokol. This verb is formed from the
noun birtok meaning property. However, it would sound constrained if we used this verb with
such sentences. Now lets see the formula for this possessive construction:
DATIVE PRONOUN

+ VAN, VANNAK + INDEFINITE ARTICLE + NOUN WITH A POSSESSIVE ENDING

Dative pronouns:

nekem, neked, neki, neknk, nektek, nekik

3rd PS and PP of
the substantive verb:

van, vannak

Indefinite article:

egy (not used in negation and in plural)


have OR have got = van / vannak
have no OR dont have any = nincs / nincsenek

Note that you can only use the 3rd PS and 3rd PP of the substantive verb because their
meaning is: there is, there are. It would make no sense conjugating it in any other
number/person like you do with I have, you have, he has.
MANDATORY TO USE:
Optional to use:

VAN / VANNAK, NOUN WITH A POSSESSIVE ENDING


dative pronoun, indefinite article

So you can also say: Van hzam. instead of Nekem van egy hzam.
More examples:
I have a dog.
I have dogs.
I have no dog.

Nekem van egy kutym. OR


Nekem vannak kutyim. OR
Nekem nincs kutym. OR

Van kutym.
Vannak kutyim.
Nincs kutym.

In a negative sentence you can use plural just like in a positive sentence:
Nincs kutym. = Nincsenek kutyim.

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51

The topic-prominent aspect allows us to say: Kutym van. instead of Van kutym.
If you put van at the beginning of the sentence, it is more important that you HAVE something.
If you put kutym at the beginning, it is more important that it is a DOG that you have.
Take a look at this:
-Van kutyd?
-Igen, van kutym.

-Do you have a dog?


-Yes, I have a dog.

-Kutyd vagy macskd van? -Do you have a dog or a cat?


-Kutym van.
-It is a dog that I have.

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52

POSSESSIVE CASE
The very first thing to make clear is:

there is no genitive in Hungarian.


the Hungarian equivalent is possessive case.
vital to remember how to make nouns plural.

Lets see the English equivalents:


Hungarian

English

possessive endings
for ex.: -m, -d, -ja

possessive pronouns as adjectives


for ex.: my, your, her

possessive pronouns
for ex.: enym, tid

possessive pronouns as adverbs


for ex.: mine, yours

POSSESSIVE ENDINGS
Number/Person Endings

Example deep

Example high

1st PS
2nd PS
3rd PS
1st PP
2nd PP
3rd PP

tollam (my pen)


tollad (your pen)
tolla (his/her pen)
tollunk (our pen)
tollatok (your pen)
tolluk (their pen)

fejem (my head)


fejed (your head)
feje (his/her head)
fejnk (our head)
fejetek (your head)
fejk (their head)

-m (-om, -am, -em, -m)


-d (-od, -ad, -ed, -d)
-(j)a, -(j)e
-nk, -unk, -nk
-(o/a)tok, -(e)tek, -()tk
-(j)uk), -(j)k

Explanation:

The possessive endings have equivalents for high and deep-vowel words,
sometimes with a link vowel.
Words in a vowel take the possessive endings with no link vowel.
Speaking of link vowel, the rules of the plural forms are valid for the
possessive endings, too:
hz / hzak / hzam
The link vowel is a in the plural and in possessive case, too.
baj / bajok / bajom
The link vowel is o in the plural and in possessive case, too.
kldk / kldkk / kldkk
The link vowel is in the plural and in possessive case, too.

No difference between genders! The 3rd PS and 3rd PP endings refer to high
and deep-vowel words, NOT FOR HE AND SHE!

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53

You see above that you should know the plural form and you can make words possessive.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule. First the words you cant have a problem with.

GROUP1: WORDS FROM ALL GROUPS WHOSE PLURAL YOU ALREADY KNOW.
akta
(document)

hz
(house)

kldk
(navel)

gyerek
(child)

torok
(throat)

levl
(letter)

aktm
aktd
aktja
aktnk
akttok
aktjuk

hzam
hzad
hza
hzunk
hzatok
hzuk

kldkm
kldkd
kldke
kldknk
kldktk
kldkk

gyerekem
gyereked
gyereke
gyereknk
gyereketek
gyerekk

torkom
torkod
torka
torkunk
torkotok
torkuk

levelem
leveled
levele
levelnk
leveletek
levelk

dj
cl
(award) (purpose)
djam
djad
dja
djunk
djatok
djuk

clom
clod
clja
clunk
clotok
cljuk

IMPORTANT!
Monosyllabic words containing long
do not change in possessive case 3rd PS and 3rd PP except r any nyl!
Examples:
t

utam, utad, tja, utunk, utatok, tjuk BUT

uram, urad, ura, urunk, uratok, uruk

GROUP 2: THESE CHANGES ONLY HAPPEN TO THE FOLLOWING WORDS IN 3RD PS / 3RD PP.

Some high-vowel words containing long go through this change:  E


Some deep-vowel words containing long go through this change:  A
three more words are irregular in some other way: apa, anya, fi
ajt
(door)

erd
(forest)

er
(force)

tet
(roof)

ajtm
ajtd
ajtaja
ajtnk
ajttok
ajtajuk

erdm
erdd
erdeje
erdnk
erdtk
erdejk

erm
erd
ereje
ernk
ertk
erejk

tetm
tetd
teteje
tetnk
tettk
tetejk

vel
(marrow of a bone)
velm
veld
veleje
velnk
veltk
velejk

apa:

apm, apd, apja, apnk, aptok, apjuk

anya:

anym, anyd, anyja, anynk, anytok, anyjuk

fi:

fim, fid, fija, fink, fitok, fijuk


fiam, fiad, fia, fiunk, fiatok, fiuk

A fim helyes.

My boyfriend is handsome.

A fiam ktves.

My son is two years old.

mez
(field)

td
(lung)

mezm
mezd
mezeje
meznk
meztk
mezejk

tdm
tdd
tdeje
tdnk
tdtk
tdejk

 (my boyfriend, your boyfriend)


 (my son, your son)

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54

GROUP 3:
1.

A COUPLE OF WORDS IN 3RD PS / 3RD PP TAKE THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS -JA, -JE,
-JUK, -JK WITHOUT J. THAT IS: -A, -E, -UK, -K.
Such words can be:

drop-vowel words: fszek  fszke, fszkk (its/their nest)


words with the last vowel shortened: kanl  kanala, kanaluk (his/their spoon)
the same goes for words ending in consonants like: c cs gy h j ny s sz z zs

Examples:
mhe (her womb)
fnye (its light)
eresze (its eaves)

2.

feje (his head)


szivacsa (his sponge)
lemeze (his disk)

agya (his brain)


hasa (his stomach)
garzsa (his garage)

SOME WORDS CAN TAKE THESE ENDINGS WITH OR WITHOUT J. THEIR MEANING DOES
NOT CHANGE IN MOST OF THE CASES. SUCH WORDS END IN: L G R
Examples:
fotele / fotelje (his armchair)
jsga / jsgja (his newspaper)

virga / virgja (his flower)


kantra / kantrja (its bridle)

Sometimes there is a difference in meaning: kara (his faculty) BUT karja (his arm)

DEFINITE ARTICLES AND POSSESSIVE CASE

The definite articles (a, az) are ALWAYS used with the possessive case,
except one occasion when it is optional.
This occasion is when a sentence begins with a noun fitted with a possessive ending.

Example:
Bartnmet szeretem. I love my girlfriend.
A bartnmet szeretem. I love my girlfriend.
Hzamat ltom.
A hzamat ltom.

I see my house.
I see my house.

In everyday language, the second one is heard more often.


So remember! Hungarian definite articles must (or can) be used with the
possessive endings (unlike the English article with the possessive pronouns!)

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55

PLURAL IN POSSESSIVE CASE

If you want to express the fact that there are more than one thing at
somebodys disposal, USE THE I ENDING instead of the k ending!
The suffix -i is inserted between the link vowel a/ e and the possessive
ending!

Examples:

DEEP

HIGH

Singular

Plural

English plural

Singular Plural

English plural

tanrom
tanrod
tanra
tanrunk
tanrotok
tanruk

tanraim
tanraid
tanrai
tanraink
tanraitok
tanraik

my teachers
your teachers
his/her teachers
our teachers
your teachers
their teachers

kpem
kped
kpe
kpnk
kpetek
kpk

my pictures
your pictures
his/her pictures
our pictures
your pictures
their pictures

kpeim
kpeid
kpei
kpeink
kpeitek
kpeik

Singular link vowel A / O becomes A in plural: -am / -om  aim


Singular link vowel E / becomes E in plural: -em / -m  eim
These plural endings are the same for irregular words, as well:
vdreim (my buckets), lbaim (my legs)

A T T E N T I O N!
POSSESSOR AND PROPERTY 3RD PS:

az hza
az hzuk

his house
their house

POSSESSOR IN 3RD PS + PROPERTY 3RD PP:

az hzai
az hzaik

his houses
their houses

That is:
SINGULAR

PLURAL

az hza (his house)


az hzuk (their house)

az hzai (his houses)


az hzaik (their houses)

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56

POSSESSIVE CASE IN ACCUSATIVE CASE


Once learned how to make words in possessive case plural, just attach AT or ET to the word.
Thats all! Example sentences: I see my daughters Im looking at my pictures
The Hungarian verb nz is transitive unlike to look at in English. Think of the verb to watch:
Im watching my pictures
1st PS
2ns PS
3rd PS
1st PP
2nd PP
3rd PP

Ltom a
Ltom a
Ltom a
Ltom a
Ltom a
Ltom a

lnyom(at)
lnyod(at)
lny(t)
lnyunk(at)
lnyotok(at)
lnyuk(at)

/
/
/
/
/
/

a
a
a
a
a
a

lnyaim(at).
lnyaid(at).
lnyai(t).
lnyaink(at).
lnyaitok(at).
lnyaik(at).

1st PS
2nd PS
3rd PS
1st PP
2nd PP
3rd PP

Nzem a
Nzem a
Nzem a
Nzem a
Nzem a
Nzem a

kpem(et)
kped(et)
kp(t)
kpnk(et)
kpetek(et)
kpk(et)

/
/
/
/
/
/

a
a
a
a
a
a

kpeim(et).
kpeid(et).
kpei(t).
kpeink(et).
kpeitek(et).
kpeik(et).

NOTE! The brackets indicate that it is not mandatory to make nouns in possessive case
accusative. They can be considered both subjective and accusative at the same time.

SHOULD I SAY E OR ?
And here is the reason why it is important to learn the correct pronunciation between A- and E-.

ACCUSATIVE

POSSESSIVE IN ACCUSATIVE

pti a termet. Hes building the room.


Fogja a kpet. Hes holding the image.
Tmi a fogat. Hes stopping the tooth.
Eszi az almt. Hes eating the apple.

pti a termt. Hes building his room.


Fogja a kpt. Hes holding his image.
Tmi a fogt. Hes stopping his tooth.
Eszi az almjt. Hes eating his apple.

In the last sentence, the word alma ends in a, so it becomes in accusative case. As for its form,
its something like an easter-egg among these words.
So lets see more examples just to make sure!
A kertet ssa.

Hes digging the garden.

A kertjt ssa.

Hes digging his garden.

A sebet tiszttja.

Hes cleaning the wound.

A sebt tiszttja.

Hes cleaning his wound.

A hzat vakolja.

Hes plastering the house.

A hzt vakolja.

Hes plastering his house.

A lbat mossa.

Hes washing the leg.

A lbt mossa.

Hes washing his leg.

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57

EMPHASIS ON THE POSSESSOR


The personal pronouns were not present so far. Explanation:

The personal pronouns are used when putting emphasis on the possessor!
Dont forget to use the definite article!
Possessive endings with personal pronouns:

SINGULAR
az n-m
a te-d
az -ja, -je
a mi-nk, -unk-, nk
a ti-tok, -tek, -tk
az -juk,-jk

PLURAL
my
your
his/her/its
our
your
their

az n-aim, -eim
a te-aid, -eid
az -ai, -ei
a mi-aink, -eink
a ti-aitok, -eitek
az -aik,-eik

mys
yours
his/her/itss
ours
yours
theirs

Examples with words: toll (pen), szem (eye)

SINGULAR DEEP

PLURAL DEEP

SINGULAR HIGH

PLURAL HIGH

a tollam
a tollad
a tolla
a tollunk
a tollatok
a tolluk

a tollaim
a tollaid
a tollai
a tollaink
a tollaitok
a tollaik

a szemem
a szemed
a szeme
a szemnk
a szemetek
a szemk

a szemeim
a szemeid
a szemei
a szemeink
a szemeitek
a szemeik

NOTE! Hungarian does not necessarily makes nouns plural when English does:
his life az lete

their lives az letk AND NOT AZ LETEIK!

Its a matter of getting used to it. Typical examples are doubled body parts: eyes, legs,
hands Hungarian thinks of these body parts in singular terms:
a szemem my eyes
a flem
my ears
a karom
my arm

and so on

Other examples in sentences:

Az az n tskm, nem a tid. Thats my bag, not yours.


Ez az frje, nem az enym. This is her husband, not mine.

Another way to put emphasis on somebody/something is this: OWN = SAJT


a sajt kocsim
A sajt szemnkkel lttuk!

my own car
We saw it with our very own eyes!

Note that you always need the definite article even with sajt! The words tid, enym are
possessive pronouns, which is our next topic.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

58

POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS
Here they are: ALWAYS WITH THE DEFINITE ARTICLE!

SINGULAR
az enym
a tied
az v
a mienk
a tietek
az vk

mine
yours
his/hers
ours
yours
theirs

PLURAL
az enyim
a tieid
az vi
a mieink
a tieitek
az vik

mine
yours
his/hers
ours
yours
theirs

NOTE! The Hungarian possessive pronouns can be made plural with the -i ending!
Furthermore, there are more versions for these pronouns:
tied = tid
mienk = mink
tietek = titek
Use whichever you want, but only in singular!
Examples:
A prna a tied.
A ceruza a mienk.
A knyv az vk.
Az alma az enym.
A jtkok az vik.
Az asztalok a tieitek.
Enym a megtiszteltets.

The cushion is yours.


The pencil is ours.
The book is theirs.
The apple is mine.
The toys are theirs.
The tables are yours.
The honour is mine.

If you want to stress the possessor even more, put the possessive pronoun at the beginning
of the sentence like in the last one. Yes, it is topic-prominent aspect again.
And be careful!
Az asztal a tied.

The table is yours. (yours singular)

Az asztal a tietek.

The table is yours. (yours plural)

Az asztalok a tieid.

The tables are yours.


(yours number/person is singular, BUT there are more properties)

Az asztalok a tieitek.

The tables are yours.


(yours number/person is plural, AND there are more properties)

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59

THE SUFFIX AND


THE POSSESSIVE QUESTION

The suffix is used to express that something belongs to somebody.


The English equivalent is s: Peters.
If there are more than one property, the suffix becomes i!
The question they answer is: Whose? Ki? or Kinek a?. No difference between the
two Hungarian questions. You choose which to use. You can even make them plural
like this: Kik? Kiknek a?

NOTE! The question Kinek a? requires that the property is fitted with a possessive ending
due to the ending nek a at the end of Ki?.
3rd PS:

Ki?
Kinek a?
Whose?

 - -Ki ez a toll?
-Kinek a tolla ez?
 s -Whose is this pen?

A toll Pter.
A toll Pter. / Ez Pter tolla.
The pen is Peters.

3rd PP:

Kik?
 -i -Kik ezek a tollak?
A tollak Pteri.
Kiknek a?
-Kiknek a tollai ezek?
A tollak Pteri. / Ezek Pter tollai.
Whose?
 s -Whose are these pens? The pens are Peters.

In everyday language, enym also has a more common plural form: enymek, not only enyim.
Choose on your own.

BELONG TO
to belong to = tartozik-hoz, -hez, -hz
Who does / dobelong to? = Kihez tartozik / tartoznak?
What does / dobelong to? = Mihez tartozik / tartoznak?
Examples:
-Who does this bag belong to?
-The bag belongs to me.

-Kihez tartozik ez a tska?


-A tska hozzm tartozik.

-Who do these bags belong to?


-The bags belong to us.

-Ki(k)hez tartoznak ezek a tskk?


-A tskk hozznk tartoznak.

-What does this button belong to?


-The button belongs to the clothes.

-Mihez tartozik ez a gomb?


-A gomb a ruhhoz tartozik.

You can also ask in Hungarian after the pattern of Ki?: Mi? (Of what?)
-Mi ez a gomb?
-What does this button belong to?

-A gomb a ruh.
-The button belongs to the clothes.

The verb tartozik requires the suffixes hoz, -hez, -hz like to belong requires the preposition to!

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60

COMPARISON OF THE POSSESSIVE


ENDINGS AND POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS
SINGULAR:

PLURAL:

possessive endings

possessive pronouns

a tollam
a tollad
a tolla
a tollunk
a tollatok
a tolluk

az n tollam
a te tollad
az tolla
a mi tollunk
a ti tollatok
az tolluk

A toll az enym.
A toll a tid.
A toll az v.
A toll a mink.
A toll a titek.
A toll az vk.

a tollaim
a tollaid
a tollai
a tollaink
a tollaitok
a tollaik

az n tollaim
a te tollaid
az tollai
a mi tollaink
a ti tollaitok
az tollaik

A tollak az enyim / az enymek.


A tollak a tieid.
A tollak az vi.
A tollak a mieink.
A tollak a tieitek.
A tollak az vik.

More examples for possessive endings and pronouns:


Fj a lbam.
A lbam fj, nem a fejem.

My leg hurts.
Its my leg that hurts, not my head.

A felelssg a mienk.
Mienk a felelssg.

The responsibility is ours.


The responsibility is ours.

A hzad nagyon rozoga.


A rozoga hz a tied.

Your house is quite ramshackle.


The ramshackle house is yours.

A hz a tied.
Tied a hz.

The house is yours.


The house is yours.

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61

OF VS. S
If you want to say that something is in someones possession, as a native English speaker,
you use the preposition of or you attach s to the possessor, sometimes both:
Johns wife, the essence of the question, the colour of the dogs kennel
Such Hungarian sentences are formed with the possessive endings and two suffixes you already
know in part: -nak a(z), -nek a(z)
The dative suffixes -nak, -nek are not to be confused with the possessive suffixes -nak a, -nek
a which must have the definite article!
TYPE
Deep
High

DATIVE CASE
-nak
-nek

POSSESSIVE CASE
-nak a(z)
-nek a(z)

With one property, these suffixes (-nak a, -nek a) can be omitted. With more than one
property, they should be used at least with one of the properties.
Johns wife
Jnosnak a felesge OR Jnos felesge
the essence of the question
a krdsnek a lnyege OR a krds lnyege
the colour of the dogs kennel a kutya hznak a szne
In the first two examples there is only one property: wife, essence. In the third one we have
two properties: colour and kennel, so it is a must using nak a at least with one
property hznak a!!
Dog is both a possessor and a property. Actually, you dont have to fit kutya with -nak a
because it sounds constrained. Basically, it is only important to have the possessive endings
attached to the property!! So the rules are:
One property
More properties
One or more properties





optional to attach nak a, -nek a to the possessor


-nak a, -nek a must be attached at least to one possessor
ALWAYS ATTACH A POSSESSIVE ENDING TO THE PROPERTY

As you see, the Hungarian word order follows the solution English uses with s:

Like youd say:

POSSESSOR
a kocsi(nak a)
the cars

PROPERTY
kereke
wheel

After all, its not the same saying:


OR

a hatalom(nak az) embere


az ember(nek a) hatalma

the powers man


the mans power

(the man of the power)


(the power of the man)

OR

a n(nek a) frje
a frj(nek a) nje

the womans husband


the husbands lover

(the husband of the woman)


(the lover of the husband)

Nje means: his woman (also means his lover). Neje means: his wife.

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62

PRONOUNS
Pronouns are words (pro-forms) that replace nouns or noun phrases. For example:
Jonathan gives a book to Alexandra.
Jonathan can be replaced with the personal pronoun he, book with it and Alexandra with her.
And so the sentence looks like this:
He gives it to her.
Like English, Hungarian also makes use of this possibility. In the following lessons, were going
through these Hungarian pronouns which never suffer gender discrimination, not even
those in 3rd PS:
personal pronouns
accusative pronouns
dative pronouns
interrogative pronouns
indefinite pronouns
reflexive pronouns
reciprocal pronouns
relative pronouns
demonstrative pronouns
Indefinite and demonstrative pronouns are the most extensive issues.

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63

PERSONAL PRONOUNS

Hungarian personal pronouns are only used with an emphatic role due to the
fact that verbs are conjugated with suffixes expressing mood, tense, number
and person. Fundamentally, there is no need to use these pronouns.

PERSONAL PRONOUNS
n
te

mi
ti
k

I
you
he/she/it
we
you
they

EXAMPLES
n magyar vagyok.
Ki vagy te?
nem tudja.
Mi szni megynk.
Ti jl vagytok?
k okosak.

Im Hungarian.
Who are you?
He doesnt know.
We go swimming.
Are you okay?
They are intelligent.

Hungarian still makes wide use of calling someone by last-name or first-name. The
polite forms are two: formal, informal.

The formal one is expressed with n, nk. The informal one with maga, maguk.
For example, you say n to a teacher, but maga to your neighbour. It is a standard
procedure to address people unknown to us with one of the polite forms.

Explanation for personal pronouns:


n

Never capitalized unless you begin a sentence with it.

te

The 2nd PS form differs from the 2nd PP!

He and she is simply expressed with . No gender discrimination. Many times the
English it is not translated at all or can be translated with the demonstrative
pronouns az (that) if needed.

mi

No problem with this pronoun: mi is just we.

ti

The 2nd PP form differs from the 2nd PS!

Note that takes the plural suffix k and thats how the pronoun they is said.

POLITE FORMS
n
nk
maga
maguk

It is the formal polite form in 3rd PS. English equivalent: you.


It is the formal polite form in 3rd PP. English equivalent: you.
It is the informal polite form in 3rd PS. English equivalent: you.
It is the informal polite form in 3rd PP. English equivalent: you.

NOTE! The polite forms require verbs to be in a 3rd person conjugation form (quite
different from what you might think as a native English speaker)! Furthermore, it is a common
thing to write the polite forms with capital letters when written (mainly in official letters,
documents, on invitation cards).
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64

You already know that the substantive verb is not used in 3rd PS/PP, present
tense, when English expresses predicative adjectives: aranyos. Shes
cute. So how do you understand whom the talk is about if the Hungarian polite forms
require a verb in 3rd PS or 3rd PP? Examples:
() nagyon tehetsges.
(n/Maga) nagyon tehetsges.
(k) nagyon tehetsgesek.
(nk/Maguk) nagyon tehetsgesek.

Hes very talented.


You (sir) are very talented.
Theyre very talented.
You (gentlemen) are very talented.

If the one you talk to/about is understood from the context, theres no need
to use the polite personal pronouns. In Hungarian, all the sentences above are
the same with no personal pronoun added.

For example, if you talk to your teacher, obviously you think of him/her as Mr./Ms. 
so no polite form is needed: Nagyon trelmesen tant. Youre teaching with so
much patience.

If you talk to someone next to you about a third person and you say Nagyon
trelmesen tant., then you might have to say the pronoun to make clear the talk
is about that third person. But it is also obvious youre talking about someone else
and you dont call the person next to you Mr. (maybe its your friend youre talking
to).

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65

ACCUSATIVE PRONOUNS

The best characteristic accusative pronouns have is the once-in-a-blue-moon effect.


They are rarely used compared to English.

And the reason for this is the definite conjugation of the Hungarian verbs which
already alludes to what direct object we mean.

That means the object can be understood from the context, so these pronouns are
not mandatory to use except when the direct object really becomes
questionable or for emphatic purpose.

Note that the 2nd PS and 2nd PP forms are different from each other (you-tged BUT
you-titeket).

NOTE! The English direct object as pronoun is equal to the Hungarian accusative
pronoun!
Accusative pronouns:
engem
tged
t
nt
magt
minket
titeket
ket
nket
magukat

RULE 1:

Due to the topic prominent aspect, you either put the accusative pronoun before
or after the verb. Here are some examples and then the explanation:
Lt (engem).
Lt (tged).
Ltja (t).
Lt (minket).
Lt (titeket).
Ltja (ket).
Engem lt.
Tged lt.
t ltja.
Minket lt.
Titeket lt.
ket ltja.

RULE 2:

me
you
him/her
You
You
us
you
them
You
You

He sees me.
RULE 1:
He sees you.
He sees her/him.
He sees us.
He sees you.
He sees them.
He sees me.
RULE 2:
He sees you.
He sees her/him.
He sees us.
He sees you.
He sees them.

the accusative pronouns


follow the verb because
there is no emphasis on
them. In this case, they
can be omitted due to the
topic-prominent aspect.
the accusative pronouns
precede the verb because
there is emphasis on them.
In this case, they have to
be said/written. Always!

When it comes to emphasing these pronouns, English uses verbal emphasis rather
than rearranging words. Hungarian puts accusative pronouns before the verbs
when emphased to be the first information in the sentence, so giving it more
importance.

Polite forms:
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66

Ltja nt.
Ltja magt.
Ltja nket.
Ltja magukat.

He sees you
He sees you
He sees you
He sees you

(sir).
(sir).
(gentlemen).
(gentlemen).

nt ltja.
Magt ltja.
nket ltja.
Magukat ltja.

He sees you
He sees you
He sees you
He sees you

(sir).
(sir).
(gentlemen).
(gentlemen).

The polite forms are made accusative in order to form the accusative equivalents. More
examples:
Engem figyel (nem mst).
Minket vrnak (nem mst).
Nem knny nt elrni, uram.
Magt se gyakran ltom, szomszd.

Hes watching me (not someone else).


Theyre waiting for us (not someone else).
Its not easy to pick up on you, sir.
I dont see a great deal of you, neighbour.

NOTE! If you use the 3rd PS and 3rd PP form accusative pronouns, you need the verb
conjugated with definite suffixes. Any other accusative pronoun require a verb with
indefinite conjugation!
T, KET, NT, NKET, MAGT, MAGUKAT:

ENGEM, TGED, MINKET, TITEKET:

Ltod ket? Do you see them?


Ltjuk nt. We see you (sir).

Ltsz engem?
Ltunk titeket.

Do you see me?


We see you (guys).

and so on
So one more time!
Accusative pronouns 3rd PS and 3rd PP:
REQUIRE THE VERB WITH DEFINITE CONJUGATION

Accusative pronouns 1st PS/PP and 2nd PS/PP:


REQUIRE THE VERB WITH INDEFINITE CONJUGATION

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67

DATIVE PRONOUNS

Rule 1 and Rule 2 learned with the accusative pronouns are also valid for dative
pronouns.
RULE 1: not mandatory to use, no emphasis on pronoun, following verb
RULE 2: mandatory to use, emphasis on pronoun, preceding verb

Note that the possessive endings show up again:


nek + -em, -ed, -i, -nk, -tek, -ik
nekem
neked
neki
neknk
nektek
nekik

to/for me
to/for you
to/for him/her
to/for us
to/for you
to/for them

Polite forms: are formed by adding the dative suffixes -nak, -nek to the pronoun!
nnek
nknek
magnak
maguknak
According to RULE 1:
Mondja (nekem).
Mondja (neked).
Mondja (neki).
Mondja (nnek).
Mondja (magnak).
Mondja (neknk).
Mondja (nektek).
Mondja (nekik).
Mondja (nknek).
Mondja (maguknak).

to/for you (sir, singular)


to/for you (sir, plural)
to/for you (sir, singular)
to/for you (sir, plural
According to RULE 2:

He tells me.
He tells you.
He tells him/her.
He tells you (sir).
He tells you (sir).
He tells us.
He tells you.
He tells them.
He tells you (sir).
He tells you (sir).

Nekem mondja.
Neked mondja.
Neki mondja.
nnek mondja.
Magnak mondja.
Neknk mondja.
Nektek mondja.
Nekik mondja.
nknek mondja.
Maguknak mondja.

He tells me.
He tells you.
He tells him/her.
He tells you (sir).
He tells you (sir).
He tells us.
He tells you.
He tells them.
He tells you (sir).
He tells you (sir).

If the verb is in definite conjugation, it is possible to put the demonstrative pronouns


azt, azokat after the pronoun in case of Rule1 and after the verb in case of
Rule 2. However, it is not necessary.
Odaadja nekem (azt). / Nekem adja oda (azt).
Odaadja nekem (azokat). / Nekem adja oda (azokat).

He gives it to me.
He gives those to me.

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68

REFLEXIVE PRONOUNS
Reflexive pronouns refer right back to the person.
magam
magad
maga
magunk
magatok
maguk

myself
yourself
himself/herself/itself
ourselves
yourselves
themselves

However, many times Hungarian uses the so-called -ik verbs instead of reflexive
pronouns.
English doesnt use reflexive pronouns as often as Hungarian does.

Megmosakszik.

He washes.
(no need for a reflexive pronoun)

Megmosakszom.

I wash.
(no need for a reflexive pronoun)

Veszek magamnak egy knyvet.

Ill buy myself a book.


(you need the reflexive pronoun)

Hozd magaddal a kutydat is!

Bring your dog with you.


(no need for a reflexive pronoun)

Mi magunk festettk a kpet.

We painted the picture all by ourselves.


(reflexive pronoun expresses aloneor with no help)

Mindig ott lldogl egymagban.

Hes always standing around by himself over there.


(reflexive pronoun expresses alone in a different way)

Megvgtam magam(at).

I cut myself.
(you need the reflexive pronoun)

My suggestion is that you always look up such expressions in a dictionary if youre not quite sure
about them.

Again, it is possible to emphase the subject.

mosakszik (nem te).


n mosakszom (nem ).
Az n kezem mosom meg (nem mst).

Hes washing (not you).


Im washing (not he).
Im washing my hands (not someone elses).

A T T E N T I O N!
Megmossa a kezt.
(sajt magnak)

He washes his hand.


(for himself)

Megmossa a kezt.
(neki)

He washes his hand.


(for him, that is for someone else)

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69

And one more thing to pay attention to!


You surely realized that the 3rd PS and 3rd PP form of the reflexive pronouns are the
same as the polite personal pronouns! So dont take one for the other.
Ltja magt.
Ltja magt.

He sees you (sir / madam).


He sees himself / herself.

You can avoid the confusion if you emphase the reflexive pronoun: Ltja sajt magt.

ACCUSATIVE AND DATIVE CASE FOR REFLEXIVE PRONOUNS


As you see in an example above (Veszek magamnak egy knyvet.) there are no different versions
for reflexive pronouns in accusative and dative case. You need to attach the proper endings!
And of course, the reflexive pronouns are deep-vowel words, so you always need deep
suffixes.

DATIVE CASE: magamnak, magadnak, magnak, magunknak, magatoknak, maguknak


ACCUSATIVE CASE: magam(at), magad(at), magt, magunkat, magatokat, magukat
The 1st and 2nd PS forms are not necessarily to be made accusative. Those forms express the
accusative aspect by themselves.
Other suffixes:

NUMBER/SUFFIXES -BA, -BAN, -BL -RA, -ON, -RL -HOZ, -NL, -TL
1ST PS

magamba
magamban
magambl

magamra
magamon
magamrl

magamhoz
magamnl
magamtl

2ND PS

magadba
magadban
magadbl

magadra
magadon
magadrl

magadhoz
magadnl
magadtl

3RD PS

magba
magban
magbl

magra
magn
magrl

maghoz
magnl
magtl

1ST PP

magunkba
magunkban
magunkbl

magunkra
magunkon
magunkrl

magunkhoz
magunknl
magunktl

2ND PP

magatokba
magatokban
magatokbl

magatokra
magatokon
magatokrl

magatokhoz
magatoknl
magatoktl

3RD PP

magukba
magukban
magukbl

magukra
magukon
magukrl

magukhoz
maguknl
maguktl

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70

RECIPROCAL PRONOUNS
There is only one reciprocal pronoun:

egyms = each other, one another

This pronoun can take any suffixes and endings if needed, but cannot be made
plural. Besides, it is a deep-vowel word! Take a look at this:
Dative case:
egymsnak
Accusative case: egymst
Instrumental case: egymssal

NUMBER/SUFFIXES -BA, -BAN, -BL -RA, -ON, -RL -HOZ, -NL, -TL
ONE FORM ONLY

egymsba
egymsban
egymsbl

egymsra
egymson
egymsrl

egymshoz
egymsnl
egymstl

Examples:

WEAK FORM:
Ismerjk egymst.
Kijttk egymssal?
Nekimennek egymsnak.

We know each other.


Do you get on well with each other?
They go against each other.

EMPHASED FORM:
Egymst ismerjk.
Egymssal kijttk?
Egymsnak mennek neki.

We know each other.


Do you get on well with each other?
They go against each other.

NOTE! Contrary to the pronouns (accusative, dative) weve discussed so far, the reciprocal
pronoun must be said and written even when not emphased!
Furthermore, sometimes egyms can be translated directly, sometimes it is expressed
differently.
Beszlnek egymssal.
egyms utn
Egyms(nak a) szavba vgnak.
Egyms(nak az) idegeire mennek.
Kzel llnak egymshoz.
egyms melletti

They talk to each other.


one after the other
They take up short.
Theyre going to each others nerves.
Theyre close to each other.
adjacent

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DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS
DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF VICINITY:
SINGULAR: ez
(this)
az
(that)
PLURAL:
ezek (these) azok (those)

One difference in their use is that these Hungarian pronouns as adjectives go


hand in hand with the definite article!
ez a hz
ezek a hzak
az az asztal
azok az asztalok

this house
these houses
that table
those tables

As adverbs, they dont require the definite article.


Ezt akarom.
Azokat lttam.
Addig a fig stlj!
Ennl jobbat nem tudok ajnlani.
Voltl annl az orvosnl?
Mgsem veszem meg azokat a ruhkat.

I want this.
I saw those.
Walk up to that tree.
I cant offer any better than this.
Did you go to that doctor?
I wont buy those clothes after all.

Whatever role these pronouns assume, they always take suffixes if needed!

IMPORTANT! You see these pronouns take suffixes if needed, can be made accusative, dative
and so on Sometimes, however, the z at the end (ez, az) assimilates with the ending or
suffix attached to it. The assimilation only goes for the singular forms! A summary table
is given here:
SUFFIXES/ENDINGS
-BA, -BE
-BAN, -BEN
-BL, -BL
-RA, -RE
-ON, -EN
-RL, -RL
-HOZ, -HEZ
-NL, -NL
-TL, -TL
ACCUSATIVE T
DATIVE NAK, -NEK
-RT
-KOR
-IG
MENNYI?

AZ
az + ba
az + ban
az + bl
az + ra
az + on
az + rl
az + hoz
az + nl
az + tl
az + t
az + nak
az + rt
az + kor
az + ig
az + nyi

abba
abban
abbl
arra
azon1
arrl
ahhoz2
annl
attl
azt
annak
azrt
akkor
addig3
annyi

EZ
ez + be
ez + ben
ez + bl
ez + re
ez + en
ez + rl
ez + hez
ez + nl
ez + tl
ez + t
ez + nek
ez + rt
ez + kor
ez + ig
ez + nyi

ebbe
ebben
ebbl
erre
ezen
errl
ehhez
ennl
ettl
ezt
ennek
ezrt
ekkor
eddig
ennyi

azon  no assimilation because the suffix begins with a vowel.


ahhoz  you write double h, but say one h in the spoken language.
3
addig  the z becomes double d and say double d.
2

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72

EVEN MORE IMPORTANT! These pronouns (ez, az) as adjectives have to agree with the
noun qualified by them. Meaning:
If the noun is marked for case (plural, accusative, etc.), ez and az have to be marked
for the same case, as well. You could call it double marking. Both in singular and plural
form. Examples:
Singular:

ez a tma

Plural:

ezek a tmk

Accusative singular:

ezt a tmt

Accusative plural:

ezeket a tmkat

Dative singular:

ennek a tmnak

Dative plural:

ezeknek a tmknak

And some examples for suffixes:


-rl, -rl:

errl a tmrl

-on, -en:

ezen a tmn

and so on
Of course, marking the noun and the pronouns ez, az for case depends on whether they
are high or deep-vowel words: ezeken a tmkon.
Lets see some of these examples in sentences:
Ez a tma nem tl rdekes.

This topic is not really interesting.

Ezek a tmk nem tl rdekesek.

These topics are not really interesting.

Ezt a tmt mr megbeszltk.

Weve already discussed this topic.

Ezeket a tmkat mr megbeszltk.

Weve already discussed these topics.

Ennek a tmnak semmi rtelme.

This topic makes no sense at all.

Ezeknek a tmknak semmi rtelme.

These topics make no sense at all.

Errl a tmrl nem szvesen beszlek.

Im reluctant to talk about this topic.

Ezen a tmn nem rdemes rgdni.

Its no use ruminating over this topic.

Sometimes, the Hungarian suffixes cannot be translated directly. Im sure you realized that.
NOTE! This phenomenon of the double marking is only valid for ez, az, as far as the rest of
the demonstrative pronouns are concerned!
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73

DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF QUALITY:


HIGH:

DEEP:

ilyen
(such, like this, of this sort, of this kind)

olyan
(such, like that, of that sort, of that kind)

ilyenek
olyanok
(such, like these, of this sort, of this kind) (such, like those, of this sort, of this kind)

This phenomenon is not rare in Hungarian. Close things are expressed with highvowel words, remote things with deep-vowel words. Jut think of ez, az. Its the
same concept.

As adjectives, they have no plural form and take no suffixes/endings!

As adverbs, they can be made plural and take suffixes/endings if needed!

Lets take a look at some examples:


Ilyen bartot ritkn tallni.
Az ilyen tel nem zlik.
Ez olyan szp!
Lttl mr olyan filmet?
Az ilyen fajta ember sosem tanul.
Olyat akarok.
Pontosan ilyennek kpzeltem.
Ilyeneket ne is mondj!
mvsz. Olyannal nem randizok.
Nem olyannak ismerem.

Such a friend can be rarely found.


I dont like meals of this sort.
This is so beautiful!
Have you ever seen such a movie?
People like him will never learn.
I want one like that.
I imagined it exactly like this.
Dont even say such things!
Hes an artist. I dont date people of that kind.
I dont know him like that.

When combined with suffixes/endings, they look like this:


SUFFIXES/ENDINGS
-BA, -BE
-BAN, -BEN
-BL, -BL
-RA, -RE
-ON, -EN
-RL, -RL
-HOZ, -HEZ
-NL, -NL
-TL, -TL
ACCUSATIVE T
DATIVE NAK, -NEK
-RT
-KOR
1
2

OLYAN
olyan + ba olyanba
olyan + ban olyanban
olyan + bl olyanbl
olyan + ra
olyanra
olyan + on olyanon
olyan + rl olyanrl
olyan + hoz olyanhoz
olyan + nl olyannl
olyan + tl olyantl
olyan + t
olyat1
olyan + nak olyannak
olyan + rt olyanrt
olyan + kor olyankor

ILYEN
ilyen + be ilyenbe
ilyen + ben ilyenben
ilyen + bl ilyenbl
ilyen + re
ilyenre
ilyen + en ilyenen
ilyen + rl ilyenrl
ilyen + hez ilyenhez
ilyen + nl ilyennl
ilyen + tl ilyentl
ilyen + t
ilyet2
ilyen + nek ilyennek
ilyen + rt ilyenrt
ilyen + kor ilyenkor

the n disappears in the accusative case of olyan: OLYAT!


the n disappears in the accusative case of ilyen: ILYET!

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74

Synonyms for ilyen, olyan are: ennyire, annyira. They can only be used
as adverbs. They cannot take suffixes since they are already formed from
the pronouns ennyi, annyi and fitted with the suffixes, -re, -ra.
Olyan finom!
Annyira finom!
Its so delicious!
Ilyen finom levest mg nem ettem!
Ennyire finom levest mg nem ettem!
Ive never eaten a soup as delicious as this!

Other synonyms for specifically of this/that kind are: olyasmi /


affle, ilyesmi / effle.
Of course, the translation always depends from the sentence. It is not
always possible to translate these pronouns in the same exact
way.

As adverbs, they take suffixes and endings if needed.

Some examples:
Ilyesmirl soha nem rteslk.
Affle emberrel nem beszlek.
Effle zsros telt nem szabadna enni.
Hallani se akarok olyasmirl!

Im never informed about things like that.


I dont talk to people like that.
Rich foods of this kind should not be eaten.
I wont hear of it!

DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF MANNER:


gy (like this) gy (like that)
Synonyms are:

ilyen mdon = in this way


olyan mdon = in that way

The noun md means: manner, mode, mood, method, way.

Obviously it is impossible for these pronouns to take


suffixes/endings!

Examples:
Ez gy nem mehet tovbb.
gy van, ahogy mondod.
gy akar megtveszteni.
Az nem gy van m!
Ilyen mdon elejt vehetjk az rvznek.

This can no longer go on like that.


Its exactly the way youre saying.
This is how he wants to deceive you.
Things are not done like that at all!
We can prevent the flood in this way.

Other synonyms can be: ekkppen, ily mdon, ilyenformn


akkppen, oly mdon, olyanformn

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DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EXPRESSING SIZE:


ekkora (as big as this) akkora (as big as that)

As adverbs, they can take suffixes if needed.


They answer the question: Mekkora? = How big?
Synonyms are: ilyen nagy (this big), olyan nagy (that big)

Examples:
-Mekkora a kr? -Ekkora.
Nem vitatkozom ekkora ostobasgon.
Akkora ft lttam!
Akkort mg nem lttam.
A virg mr ekkorra ntt.

-How sever is the damage? -Its this severe.


I wont argue about a stupidity like that.
I saw such a big tree!
Ive never seen one as big as that.
The flower has grown this big.

and so on
The pronouns ekkora, akkora ARE NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH:
ekkorra (by this time), akkorra (by that time)
The difference is one r!

DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS OF PLACE:


It is a must that you remember the three directions phenomenon!
(See the Chapter called Adverbs of Place)
HOL? WHERE? HOVA? WHERE TO? HONNAN? WHERE FROM?
itt
here
ide
here
innen
from here
ott
there
oda
there
onnan
from there
Examples:
Itt adjk a legjobb pizzt.
Ne menj oda!
Onnan jvk.
Ki rakta ezt a szket ide?
Innen nem ltni semmit.

The best pizza is served at this place.


Dont go over there.
Im coming from there.
Who put this chair over here?
From here you cant see anything.

They can be emphased, but are not heard many times:


emitt, amott, emide, amoda, eminnen, amonnan
Synonyms for itt, ott, ide, oda, innen, onnan are:
ezen a helyen
azon a helyen

erre a helyre
arra a helyre

errl a helyrl
arrl a helyrl

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DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS FOR THE SAME:

If you want to say that something doesnt change, it stays as it is, then
attach the prefix ugyan- to the word in need of characterization. The
English equivalent is: the same, just the same.

ugyanez
ugyanilyen
ugyangy
ugyanennyire
ugyanekkor
ugyanitt
ugyanide
ugyaninnen

ugyanaz
ugyanolyan
ugyangy
ugyanannyira
ugyanakkor
ugyanott
ugyanoda
ugyanonnan

the same (as this, as that)


of the same kind/sort
in the same way
in the same way
at the same time
at the same place
to the same place
from the same place

Other expression:
Ugyanmr! Gyere te is velnk.

Common! Come with us.

n ugyancsak pkot lttam a falon.

I also saw a spider on the wall.

Ugyan minek?

What (on earth) for?

The meanings of ugyan:


Ugyan! = Common! Come now! There, there! You dont say so!

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INTERROGATIVE PRONOUNS
Once again, the chapter for Adverbs of Place mentions some of them. There you can read more
about the three directions phenomenon.
The most important interrogative pronouns are:

Mi van itt?

What is here?

Ki vagy te?

Who are you?

Mirt mondasz ilyet?

Why are you saying such things?

Mikor megynk?

When are we going?

Hol vannak?

Where are they?

Hova mennek?

Where are they going?

Honnan rkeznek?

Where will they arrive from?

Hogy vagy?

How are you?

Milyen llat ez?

What animal is this?

Milyen napod volt?

How was your day?

Hny tanult tantasz?

How many students are you teaching?

Mennyi s van mg?

How much salt is there left?

Melyik tollal rsz?

Which pen are you writing with?

Meddig maradsz Pesten?

How long are you staying in Pest?

Mita vagy Pesten?

How long have you been in Pest?

Meddig futottl a tren?

How far did you run on the square?

Meddig futottl tegnap?

How long did you run yesterday?

But first: a lot of the question words are formed with Mi? plus a suffix or ending. Examples:
Mi + -ta
Mi + -rt
Mi + -kor
Mi + -t
Mi + -nek
Mi + -k

=
=
=
=
=
=

Mita? (How long?)


Mirt? (Why?)
Mikor? (When)
Mit? (What? accusative)
Minek? (What for?)
Mik? (What? plural)

The questions Hol? Hova? Honnan? are dealt with in this Chapter: Adverbs of Place
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Mi?
Besides performing its fundamental duty, Mi? also takes suffixes to form other question words (see
above). It is a high-vowel word, so it takes high suffixes: Minek? Mirl? Miben?...
English equivalent: What?
A slight difference native English speakers might not find evident at the beginning of their study is
that Mi? has to be made plural or accusative or plural in accusative if needed!
Any other suffix, however, depends on the idiomatic expressions of the given language.
For example, Hungarian says tallkozik valakivel (literally: to meet with someone), but English
says to meet someone without a preposition.
Examples:
Mi trtnt?
-Mik futottak itt el? -Macskk.
Mit mondasz?
-Miket adtl oda neki? -A kpeket.
Mirl beszlsz?
Min vitatkoztok?
Mihez kell a segtsgem?

What happened?
-What did just run off over here? -Cats.
What are you saying?
-What did you give them? -The pictures.
What are you talking about?
What are you guys arguing about?
What do you need my help for?

In the first four sentences it is not possible to mark the English question words in any way. In
Hungarian, you must do it!

Ki?
Ki? takes a lot of suffixes if needed, but some just wouldnt make any sense being added to it.
Examples: Kiig? (Up to whom?) Kita? (Since whom?) Kikor? (At whom?). You see what I mean.
These suffixes refer to a time period, so it just doesnt make any sense.
English equivalent: Who?
Like Mi?, Ki? is a high-vowel word and has to be marked if needed! It is possible for English
to make Who? Accusative, though: Whom?
Examples:
Ki van ott?
Kik voltak ezek?
-Kit lttl? -Egy nt.
-Kiket lttl? -Nket.
Kirl beszlsz?
Kitl futottl el?
Kihez beszl?
Kirt teszed ezt?

Whos there?
Who were they?
-Who did you see? -A woman.
-Who did you see? -Some women.
Who are you talking about?
Who did you run away from?
Who is she talking to?
Who are you doing this for?

Other forms of Mi? and Ki? are: Micsoda? Kicsoda?. They can take suffixes, too: Micsodt?
Kicsodrl?...
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79

Mirt?
English equivalent: Why?
It is impossible for this question word to take suffixes. Obviously, I hope.
Mirt vagy itt?

Why are you here?

Mirt nem alszol mg?

Why arent you sleeping?

Mirt mondtad ezt?

Why did you say that?

In the spoken language, it has two other forms Mrt? And Mr?. I strongly recommend you avoid
using them. Reason one: you cant write them like that according to grammatical rules. Reason
two: Mrt? shouldnt be confused with the conjunction mert meaning because. Example:
-Mrt kvetsz folyton?

-Mert tetszel nekem.

-Why are you always following me?

-Because I like you.

You see what I mean? Make it simple for you and simply use Mirt?.
Besides, it can be expressed with Mi? + -nek, too. However, it might have a less polite or even
pejorative shade. Use it among friends and family: Minek?
English equivalent: What for?
Minek vagy itt?

What (on earth) are you here for?

Minek alszol ennyit?

Why on earth are you sleeping that much?

Minek mondtad ezt?

What did you say that for?

Mikor?
Its made up of Mi? + -kor = Mikor?
The suffixes kor indicates a certain time period. The English preposition for it is: at.
It can take this suffix:

-ra  Mikorra? By what time?

English equivalent: When?


Mikor jsz?

When are you coming?

Mikor kelnk fel?

When will we get up?

Mikor mentl vsrolni?

When did you go shopping?

Mikorra csinlod meg a csapot?

By what time will you have repaired the tap?


(When will you repair the tap? sounds better, right?)

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80

Melyik?
This is the question word that requires a specific answer. It contains the suffix ik.
It can be made accusative, dative and plural, plus takes suffixes.
English equivalent: Which?
Examples:
-Melyik kocsival msz? A feketvel.
-Which car do you take? The black one.
-Melyik vros tetszik jobban? Rma.
-Which city do you prefer? Rome.
-Melyik gombot kell megnyomni? A harmadikat.
-Which button do I press? The third one.
-Melyik lny tetszik? Az egyik.
-Which girl do you like? One of them.
-Melyik vllalat ment csdbe? Mindegyik.
-Which enterprise did go bankrupt? All of them.

The plural form is:

Mely? Melyek?

-Mely lnyok tetszenek? Azok.


-Which girl do you like? Those.
-Melyek azok a gymlcsk, amelyeket szeretsz? Alma, bann, narancs.
-Which fruits do you like? Apple, banana, orange.
You can also ask: Milyen gymlcsket szeretsz? What fruits do you like?
Note that the English answer often contains the word one. Youve already seen this by the
adjectives:
-Melyik autt akarod?

-Which car do you want?

A pirosat.

The red one.

Melyiket?

Which one?

Mondom a pirosat!

I said the red one!

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Hogy? vs. Milyen?


Hogy? is used when one is interested in a mood or condition.
Milyen? is used when you want to know about a quality, characteristic.
Hogy?= How?
Milyen? = How? Whatlike? What kind of?

From your point of view these are tricky question words because you can say How? even if
Hungarian refers to a quality.
Examples for tricky sentences:
-Milyen a nvred? Kedves.
-Milyen id van? Ess.
-Milyen napod volt? J.
-Milyen teleket szeretsz? Mindenflt.

-What is your sister like? Shes kind.


-What is the weather like? Its rainy.
-How was your day? Good.
-What kind of meals do you like? All kind of meals.

-Hogy vagy? Jl.


-Hogy mondta?
-Hogy engedhetted ezt meg neki?
-Hogy ll a helyzet?

-How are you? Im fine.


-Pardon, what did you say?
-How could you allow him to do that?
-How do things stand with you?

Exclamation: Milyen? = What? How?


Milyen fonnyadt az a barack!
Milyen okos vagy!
Milyen szp id van ma!
Milyen egy gazember!

How parched that peach is!


How smart you are!
What a fine weather it is today!
What a scoundrel!

Mita? Vs. Meddig?


Mita? is made up of Mi? + -ta. It cannot take any suffixes!
Meddig? means How long? and also How far?
English equivalent for Mita?: Since when? How long?
Examples:
Mita vagy Pcsen?
Meddig maradsz Pcsen?

How long have you been in Pcs?


How long are you staying in Pcs?

Meddig futottl a tren?


Meddig aludtl tegnap?

How far did you run on the square?


How long did you sleep yesterday?

So Meddig? expresses a limit in time and space!

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82

Hny vs. Mennyi?


English equivalent: How much? How many?
The first question we should ask:

IS THERE REALLY A VERSUS BETWEEN THESE QUESTIONS?


This question is not easy to answer since English has clear ideas about the countable and
uncountable concept. Hungarian doesnt really have such a concept. Linguists would bring up pros
and contras now. Any statement doesnt really go on all fours and heres why:
-Hny embert lttl? Kettt
-How many people did you see? Two.
-Mennyi embert lttl? Kettt.
-How many people did you see? Kettt.
Both are valid questions for countable beings like people. But we dont want to be linguists,
do we? We just want to speak Hungarian, right? So heres my answer to make your life easier:
Hny? and Mennyi? are only synonyms for countable things!
Mennyi? is definitely used for uncountable things. Take a look at this:
Mennyi es esett! How much rain there is!
These questions are never used in the plural and so the noun following them are not plural, either.
Its due to the Hungarian plural concept:
If there is a word expressing a quantity (one, two, many, a few),
the word it refers to must not made plural!
Examples:

egy lepke
kt lepke
szz lepke
sok lepke
kevs lepke

a butterfly
two butterflies
a hundred butterflies
many butterflies
a few butterflies

You dont see lepke in the plural anywhere, do you?


More examples:
-Hny almt ettl? Hrmat.
-Mennyi almt ettl? Hrmat.
Mennyi az id?
Hny ra van?

-How many apples did you eat? Three.


-How many apples did you eat? Three.
What time is it?
Whats the time?

There are two forms fitted with suffixes for this question: How many people?
How many people? = Hnyan? Mennyien?

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83

INDEFINITE PRONOUNS
As for their formation, the Hungarian indefinite pronouns are quite equal to the English
ones. These are the prefixes they are formed with:
valaakr-, brseminden, mind

NOTE! The prefix br- cannot be paired with the question word hny!
Except that, akr- and br- are the same. No difference in meaning. Use
whichever you want.
Some of them are tricky to translate because English doesnt form them as
consequently as Hungarian does. What you should particularly be careful
with is the forms SE- and MINDEN-.

VALA-:
valami
valaki
valamirt
valamikor
valamilyen
valameddig
valahogy
valahol
valahova
valahonnan
valamennyi
valahny
valamelyik

SE-:
something
somebody
for some reason
sometime; once
some kind of
for some time; some distance
somehow
somewhere
(to) somewhere
from somewhere
a certain amount of
a certain number of
one (of them); one or the other

AKR-:
akrmi
akrki
akrmirt
akrmikor
akrmilyen
akrmeddig
akrhogy
akrhol
akrhova
akrhonnan
akrmennyi
akrhny
akrmelyik

someanyno-, anyevery-

semmi
senki
semmirt
semmikor
semmilyen
semeddig
sehogy
sehol
sehova
sehonnan
semennyi
sehny
semelyik

nothing
nobody
for no reason
never
no (kind of)
(for no time; no distance)
by no means
nowhere
(to) nowhere)
from nowhere
no (amount of)
no (number of)
none (of them)

MINDEN-:
anything
anybody
for any reason
anytime
any kind of
however far; however long
anyhow
anywhere
(to) anywhere
from anywhere
however much
however many
any (of them); whichever

minden
mindenki
mindenrt
mindenkor
mindenfle
mindvgig
mindenkppen
mindenhol
mindenhova
mindenhonnan
mindahny
mindahny
mindegyik

everything
everybody
for everything
everytime
all kind of
all along; to the very last
by all means
everywhere
(to) everywhere
from everywhere
all
all
all (of them)

semmi, semmirt, semmikor, semmilyen  double m!


senki  there is an n inserted!
mindenfle, mindvgig, mindenkppen, mindahny, mindegyik  formed differently!
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84

There are other indefinite pronouns we should talk about. Note that English calls these words
indefinite pronouns, however, Hungarian actually calls them indefinite numerals.

SOK = many, much

Refers to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


It always requires a singular noun!
sok ember

many people

sok kutya

many dogs

sok tel

much food

sok s

much salt

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

sokat = a lot
Sokat ltja a bartjt.

She sees a great deal of his friend.

Sokat nekel.

He sings a lot.

Sok has another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

sokan = many people


Sokan kocognak a parkban.

Many people jog in the park.

Nem sokan rtik a fizikt.

Not many people understand physics.

The comparative degree of sok is:

tbb = more AND tbben = more people


tbb ember

more people

tbb kutya

more dogs

tbb tel

more food

tbb s

more salt

Tbben kocognak a parkban.

More people are jogging in the park.

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85

KEVS = little, a few

Refers to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


It always requires a singular noun!
kevs ember

few people

kevs kutya

few dogs

kevs tel

little food

kevs s

little salt

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

keveset = little
Keveset ltja a bartjt.

She doesnt see his friend too often.

Keveset nekel.

He sings little.

Sok has another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

kevesen = a few people


Kevesen kocognak a parkban. A few people jog in the park.
Kevesen rtik a fizikt.

A few people understand physics.

The comparative degree of kevs is:

kevesebb = less, fewer AND kevesebben = fewer people


kevesebb ember

fewer people

kevesebb kutya

fewer dogs

kevesebb tel

less food

kevesebb s

less salt

Kevesebben kocognak a parkban.

Fewer people are jogging in the park.

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86

EGY KEVS, EGY KIS, NHNY = a little, a few, some

Nhny refers to countable nouns, the rest refers to both


countable and uncountable nouns.

It always requires a singular noun!


egy kevs alma

a few apples

egy kis rm

a little joy

nhny kocsi

some cars

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

egy keveset, egy kicsit, nhnyat = a little, a few, some


Eszem egy keveset.

Ill eat a little.

Eszem egy kevs almt.

Ill eat a few apples.

Egy kicsit nekel, aztn pihen. He sings a little bit, then he takes a rest.
Veszek nhnyat.

Ill buy some.

They have another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

egy kevesen, nhnyan = a few people, some people


Egy kevesen kocognak.

A few people are jogging.

Nhnyan rtik a fizikt.

Some people understand physics.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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87

NHNY, EGY-KT, EGY PR = some, a couple of

They refer to:

countable nouns.
It always requires a singular noun!
egy pr ember

a couple of people

nhny kutya

some dogs

egy-kt alma

some apples (an apple or two)

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

nhnyat, egy prat, egy-kettt = some, a couple of


Nhnyat megevett.

She ate a couple of them. (apples)

Egy prat elnekelt.

He sang some. (of the songs)

Egy-kettt elkaptak.

Theyve caught a couple of them. (burglars)

They have another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

nhnyan, egy pran = some people, a couple of people,


Nhnyan kocognak.

Some people are jogging.

Egy pran rtik a fizikt.

A couple of people understand physics.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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88

J NHNY, ELG SOK = a number of, quite a lot of, several

J nhny refers to countable nouns. Elg sok refers to both


countable and uncountable nouns.

It always requires a singular noun!


j nhny ember a number of people
elg sok vz

quite much water

elg sok szoba

several rooms

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

j nhnyat, elg sokat = a number of, several


J nhnyat megevett.

She ate a number of them. (apples)

Elg sokat nekel.

He sings quite a lot.

They have another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

j nhnyan, elg sokan = several people


J nhnyan kocognak a parkban.

Several people jog in the park.

Elg sokan dolgoznak.

Quiet a lot of people work.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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89

J SOK, RENGETEG = plenty of, a good/great deal of, a great amount of

They refer to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


It always requires a singular noun!
j sok ember

a number of people

rengeteg vz

plenty of water

j sok vz

a great amount of water

rengeteg ember

a great number of people

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

j sokat, rengeteget = plenty of, a good/great deal of


J sokat megevett.

She ate plenty. (apples)

Rengeteget nekel.

He sings a lot.

They have another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

j sokan, rengetegen = a great number of people


J sokan kocognak a parkban. A great number of people jog in the park.
Rengetegen dolgoznak.

Lots of people work.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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90

TL SOK, TL KEVS = too much, too many, too little

They refer to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


It always requires a singular noun!
tl sok ember

too many people

tl sok vz

too much water

tl kevs ember

just a few people

tl kevs id

too little time

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

tl sokat, tl keveset = too much, too many, too little


Tl sokat evett.

She ate too many. (apples)

Tl sokat jr szni.

He goes swimming too often.

Tl keveset nekel.

He doesnt sing very often.

They have another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb. This
form is:

tl sokan, tl kevesen = too many people


Tl sokan kocognak a parkban.

Too many people jog in the park.

Tl kevesen dolgoznak.

Only a small number of people work.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!


NOTE!
The adverb tl is derivated from the adverb: tlsgosan = too!
tlsgosan nagy = tl nagy  too big

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91

A LEGTBB, A LEGKEVESEBB = the most, the least, the fewest

They refer to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


It always requires a singular noun!
a legtbb ember

most people

a legtbb vz

most of the water

a legkevesebb ember

the fewest people

a legkevesebb vz

the least water

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

a legtbbet, a legkevesebbet = mostly, the most, the least


evett a legtbbet.

She ate the most. (apples)

jr szni a legtbbet.

He goes swimming mostly.

nekel a legkevesebbet.

He sings least.

a legtbb has another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb.
This form is:

a legtbben, a legkevesebben= most people, the fewest people


A legtbben kocognak a parkban.
Most people jog in the park.
A legkevesebben az iskolban voltak.
The fewest people were in school.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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MINDEN, AZ SSZES, MINDEN EGYES, AZ EGSZ, EGSZ = every,


all, each, the entire, whole

Minden, az egsz, minden egyes refer to countable nouns. Az


sszes refers to both countable and uncountable nouns.

It always requires a singular noun!


minden ember

every man

az sszes vz

all water

minden egyes hz

each house

az egsz hz

the entire house

It can be made accusative if needed. This form is:

mindent, az sszeset, az egszet = all, every, the entire


Mindent megevett.

She ate everything.

Az sszeset megette.

She ate it all.

Az egszet megette.

She ate it all.

Egsz with and without the definite article = the entire, whole

Az egsz hz szp.
Egsz hzak dltek ssze.

The entire house is beautiful.


Whole houses have collapsed.

With no definite article, EGSZ requires the plural form!

a legtbb has another form that requires the 3rd PS form of the verb.
This form is:

mindenki, az sszes ember= everybody, all people


Mindenki kocog a parkban.
Everybody jogs in the park.
Az sszes ember otthon volt.
All people were at home.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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93

MINDKETT, EGYIK SEM, VALAMELYIK = both, none, (n)either

Mindekett refers to countable nouns. The rest refers to both


countable and uncountable nouns.

It always requires a singular noun!


Mindkt tortt megesszk.
Both cakes will be eaten.
Egyik tortt sem esszk meg. Neither cake will be eaten.
Valamelyik tortt megesszk. Either of the cakes will be eaten.
More possibilities for either: egyik a kett kzl, brmelyik a kett kzl
-Melyiket eszed meg?
-Egyiket a kett kzl.

-Which are you going to buy?


-Either this or that.

a legtbb has another form that requires the 3rd PP form of the verb.
This form is:

mindeketten, egyikk sem, valamelyikk= both of them, none of


them, one of them
Mindketten kocognak a parkban.
Both people jog in the park.
Egyikk sem volt iskolban.
None of them was in school.
Valamelyikk igazat mondott.
One of them told the truth.

NO COMPARATIVE DEGREE FOR THESE PRONOUNS!

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94

MS, A MSIK, A TBBI, A TBBIEK = other, the other, the others,


else

They refer to:

countable and uncountable nouns.


MS = singular or plural noun
A MSIK = singular noun
A TBBI = singular noun
A TBBIEK require the 3rd PP of the verb!
ms trtnet.
ms trtnetek
a tbbi tnyr

A tbbiek

other story.
other stories.
the other plates
refers to: The

A tbbiek mr elmentek.

other people

The others have already left.

The pronoun ELSE is also expressed with MS with indefinite


pronouns:
valaki ms
valami ms
Ez valaki msnak a tolla.

somebody else
something else
This is someone elses pen.

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95

SUMMARY TABLE FOR INDEFINITE PRONOUNS


NUMBER

BASIC WORD

SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR, PLURAL

sok
j sok
nagyon sok
rengeteg
temrdek
nhny
j nhny
egy pr
j pr
egy kett/kt
kevs
egy kevs
kis
egy kis
elg sok
elg kevs
tl sok
tl kevs
minden
az sszes
minden egyes
az egsz
egsz
mindkett
mindkt
mind a kett
egyik sem
semelyik
valamelyik
(a kett kzl)
ms
a msik
a tbbi
a legtbb

SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR, PLURAL
SINGULAR
SINGULAR
SINGULAR

NUMBER
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL
PLURAL

AS NUMERAL
sokan
j sokan
nagyon sokan
rengetegen
nhnyan
j nhnyan
egy pran
j pran
egy ketten
kevesen
egy kevesen
elg sokan
elg kevesen
tl sokan
tl kevesen
mindketten
mind a ketten
egyikk sem
semelyikk
valamelyikk
(a kett kzl)
a tbbiek
a legtbben

AS IN ACCUSATIVE CASE
sokat
j sokat
nagyon sokat
rengeteget
nhnyat
j nhnyat
egy prat
j prat
egy kettt
keveset
egy keveset
kicsit
egy kicsit
elg sokat
elg keveset
tl sokat
tl keveset
mindent
az sszeset
az egszet
mindkettt
mind a kettt
egyiket sem
semelyiket
valamelyiket
(a kett kzl)
mst
a msikat
a tbbit
a legtbbet

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96

RELATIVE PRONOUNS
Relative pronouns refer to a person/object of the main clause
and connect it with the subordinate clause.

Example:
Ltom a lnyt, aki a padon l.
I see the girl (who is) sitting on the bench.
In this special sentence, the English relative pronoun who is not mandatory to use. However,

HUNGARIAN RELATIVE PRONOUNS MUST BE ALWAYS USED, EVEN IN ACCUSATIVE CASE!


A lny, akit rgta ismerek, a padon l.
The girl (whom) Ive known for long is sitting on the bench.
Hungarian relative pronouns are formed the prefix a- + an interrogative pronoun. They
must agree in the right number / person (singular, plural) and right case (accusative,
dative)! Example:
Ki?  a- + ki = aki
Mi?  a + mi = ami
and so on
Important! As for Mi?, there are two versions!
ami
amely

refers to undetermined things/people


refers to determined things/people

(spoken language)
(news, official talk, polite talk)

Note that the spoken language prefers using ami to amely. More examples:
A kocsi, ami ott parkol, az enym.
The car (which is) parking there is mine.
A kocsik, amik ott parkolnak, az enymek. The cars (which are) parking there are mine.
A hz, amely pl, ronda.
A hzak, amelyek plnek, rondk.

The house (which is) being built is ugly.


The houses (which are) being built are ugly.

A film, amelyrl beszlek, j volt.


The film (which) Im talking about was good.
A filmek, amelyekrl beszlek, jk voltak. The films (which) Im talking about were good.
A fi, akinek a szlei elvltak, szomor.
The boy whose parents got divorced is sad.
A fik, akiknek a szlei elvltak, szomorak. The boys whose parents got divorced are sad.
A frfi, aki ott ll, rendr.
A frfiak, akik ott llnak, rendrk.

The man (who is) standing there is a cop.


The men (who are) standing there are cops.

Az, aki ezt mondja, hazudik.


Azok, akik ezt mondjk, hazudnak.

The one who says that lies.


Those who say that lie.

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97

A bankrabl, akit lttam, elfutott.


A bankrablk, akiket lttam, elfutottak.

The bank robber (whom) I saw ran off.


The bank robbers (whom) I saw ran off.

A hz, ahol lakom, nagy.


A hzak, ahol lakom, nagyok.

The house where I live is big.


The houses where I live are big.

Futottam, ahogy brtam.

I was running as I could.

Ameddig a szem ellt, fa van.

As far as the eye can reach, theres nothing but trees.

Az ok, amirt hvtalak, egyszer.


Az okok, amikrt hvtalak, egyszerek.

The reason (why) I called you is simple.


The reasons (why) I called you are simple.

NOTE! The pronoun ahol cannot be marked for case for obvious reasons. It only has the other two
forms according to the three directions phenomenon: ahova, ahonnan.

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98

VERBS AND TENSES


VERBS
Verbs are words expressing action, occurence, state of being.
Characteristics of Hungarian verbs:

Hungarian verbs are high or deep-vowel words.

There are two tenses: present, past

The future tense is paraphrased like in English, but more often it is


expressed with the present tense. Because of that it is not really
considered a different tense.

There is only one present, one past and one future tense.

There are three moods: indicative; imperative; present and past


conditional

Summary:
INDICATIVE:

Present, Past, Future

IMPERATIVE:

Present

CONDITIONAL:

Present, Past

Hungarian verbs have an indefinite and a definite conjugation system.

Suffixes are attached to the verb in all numbers/persons, therefore it


is unnecessary to use the personal pronouns unless for emphasing the
person.

Verbs are transitive, intransitive, impersonal.

The Hungarian infinitive can be conjugated when teaming up with an


impersonal verb.

Verbal nouns are: infinitive, present participle, past participle and


future participle.

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99

INFINITIVE

English verbs can be put in the infinitive form like this: to be, to dream.
Hungarian verbs also have an infinitive form indicated by

the suffix ni : lenni, lmodni.


More example: aludni (to sleep)

replni (to fly)

shajtani (to sigh)

rlni (to be delighted)

lni (to sit)

llni (to stand)

Verbs ending in two consonants take the infinitive with a link


vowel (shouldnt be new since thats the exact method with nouns and
plurals). In this case, the link vowels can be: a (deep), e (high)

hall

(he/she hears)

hallani

(to hear)

mond

(he/she says)

mondani

(to say)

ment

(he/she saves)

menteni

(to save)

gyjt

(he/she collects)

gyjteni

(to collect)

It is important to mention that entries in a dictionaries give Hungarian


verbs in the 3rd person singular form, indefinite conjugation.
Logically enough, because this form has no suffix to it, so it can be
considered the basic form of the verb.

And there are only a few verbs with irregular infinitives  the so-called
nni verbs. Here you have their infinitive and 3rd PS indefinite form:
lenni van (to be)

menni megy (to go)

jnni jn (to come)

enni eszik (to eat)

inni iszik (to drink)

tenni tesz (to put, to do)

venni vesz (to take) hinni hisz (to believe)

vinni visz (to bring)

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100

DEFINITE AND INDEFINITE CONJUGATION


I know thats a topic driving foreign students mad, and even if it seems complicated at first and
you think it needs getting used to it, I can give you a fairly simple explanation.
Here it is:

DEFINITE CONJUGATION INDEFINITE CONJUGATION


Ltom
I see

a
the

ft.
tree.

Ltok
I see

egy
a

ft.
tree.

Definite conjugation requires verbs conjugated with the definite


suffixes. Indefinite conjugation requires verbs conjugated with the
indefinite suffixes. And whats the difference?

If we talk about a particular/definite thing/person, we have to conjugate


the verb with the definite suffixes. If we talk about a
indefinite/unknown thing/person, we have to conjugate the verb with
the indefinite suffixes. And the key to you know when to use this or that
is:

the definite and indefinite articles!

Take a look at the definite example: Ltom a ft. You see the definite
article, which means I see a definite tree. I know exactly what tree Im
talking about.

Take a look at the indefinite example: Ltok egy ft. You see the
indefinite article, which means I see a tree of some sort. I dont know
what tree it is. Ive never seen it before.

NOTE! Purely intransitive verbs cannot be conjugated with the definite suffixes. Such
verbs express existence or motion: van (to be), megy (to go), jn (to come) and so on
Thats all you should know about this vital topic, but you should know it well since it is always
present in the Hungarian language. You cant avoid learning and using it.
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101

But what if there is no definite or indefinite article in the sentence?


(Return to the Articles chapter to see the difference between the Hungarian and English use.)

USE THE INDEFINITE CONJUGATION IN THESE CASES:

If there is no article, you have to apply the indefinite conjugation.


Indefinite numerals and pronouns also causes the verb to be
conjugated with the indefinite suffixes.
This rule is also visible if the noun is plural: Fkat ltok I see trees. It is
because the indefinite article is not used in the plural. If it is expressed with
nhny (some), that is no problem, either because nhny is an
indefinite numeral!

USE THE DEFINITE CONJUGATION IN THESE CASES:

The demonstrative pronouns require the verb to be conjugated


with the definite suffixes given the fact that those pronouns refer to
something specific/definite.
Proper names (John, David), also require the definite conjugation
since names already refer to somebody specific.

Examples:
Nzem a lnyt.
Nzek egy lnyt.

Im watching the girl.


Im watching a girl.

Azt a lnyt nzik.


Sok lnyt nznek.

Theyre watching that girl.


Theyre watching a lot of girls.

A fikat szereti.
Fikat szeret.
Nhny fit szeret.
Sehny fit nem szeret.

She loves the boys.


She loves boys.
She loves some boys.
She doesnt love any boys.

Megviccelnk valakit.
Megvicceljk Ptert.

We play a trick on somebody.


We play a trick on Peter.

NOTE! The nouns in such sentences are in the accusative case because they follow /
precede a transitive verb! (Remember when you read about the accusative case: Ltom a
folyt). Besides, different pieces of information in a conversation may allude to something
determined or undetermined and then the answer has to agree with it.
In the following examples, the stress is on the verb. It is important whether Im watching a/the girl
or Im doing something else with her. To makes things simpler, Ill use the Simple Present Tense in
English.
-Nzed a lnyt? Igen, nzem (t).
-Nzel egy lnyt? Igen, nzek (egyet).

-Do you watch the girl? -Yes, I watch (her).


-Do you watch a girl?
-Yes, I watch (one).

Thats all about definite and indefinite conjugation. Maybe you also want to finally conjugate verbs,
so lets jump to Present Tense.
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102

PRESENT TENSE
The Hungarian language has one present tense called: jelen id. The four English present
tenses and often the future tenses are to be translated with the one Hungarian present tense!

HIGH AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH INDEFINITE CONJUGATION


INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
vezet (to drive), kt (to knit), lt (to see)

1st PS:

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(o)k, -(e)k, -()k


-sz
-(u)nk, -()nk
-tok, -tek, -tk
-nak, -nek

vezetek
vezetsz
vezet
vezetnk
vezettek
vezetnek

ktk
ktsz
kt
ktnk
kttk
ktnek

ltok
ltsz
lt
ltunk
lttok
ltnak

Link vowels are needed if the verb ends in a consonant. Verbs containing ,
, , take the plural k (Remember nouns? kldk kldkk). For deep-vowel
verbs there is no a link vowel!

2nd PS:

No link vowel is needed for these forms. You just add sz.

3rd PS:

The indefinite conjugation has no suffix for the 3rd PS. So this form is the right
choice to give the basic form of a verb  dictionary form.

1st PP:

Link vowels are needed if the verb ends in a consonant. If it ends in a vowel,
the suffix -nk is added. But I dont think theres a verb in a vowel.

2nd PP:

No link vowel is needed for these forms. Again, verbs containing , , ,


take the plural tk. Deep verbs just take tok.

3rd PP:

No link vowel is needed for these forms. You just add nak, -nek.

These suffixes must be familiar to you since you already know them. If you
attach the suffixes -unk/-nk, -tok/-tek/-tk to a noun, they are
possessive endings. As well as the suffixes nak/-nek have the same
form as those for the dative case, but only their form is similar, not
their meaning!

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103

Exception:

Verbs ending in two consonants take a link vowel in 2nd PS/PP and
3rd PP, too. In this case, the suffixes look like this:

2nd PS: -esz for high verbs

-asz for deep verbs

3rd PP:

-anak for deep verbs

-enek for high verbs

2nd PP: -etek, -tk for high verbs

-otok for deep verbs

You choose if you want a link vowel in 2nd PP! I recommend you want it,
maybe except with the verb: mondani.
The rest of the conjugation is the same.
Examples:
Deep verb 

mond (to say)


mondok, mondasz, mond, mondunk, mond(o)tok, mondanak

High verb 

ment (to save)


mentek, mentesz, ment, mentnk, mentetek, mentenek
gyjt (to collect)
gyjtk, gyjtesz, gyjt, gyjtnk, gyjttk, gyjtenek

Monosyllabic verbs containing long like ft (to heat), ht (to cool), mt (to operate on) and
verbs ending in t like segt (to help), lazt (to relax) belong to this group, too:

2nd PS:

ftesz, htesz, mtesz, segtesz, laztasz

2nd PP:

fttk, httk, mttk, segtetek, laztotok

3rd PP:

ftenek, htenek, mtenek, segtenek, laztanak

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HIGH AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH DEFINITE CONJUGATION


DEFINITE CONJUGATION
vezet (to drive), kt (to knit), lt (to see)

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(o)m, -(e)m, -()m


-(o)d, -(e)d, -()d
-ja, -i
-juk, -jk
-jtok, -itek
-jk, -ik

vezetem
vezeted
vezeti
vezetjk
vezetitek
vezetik

ktm
ktd
kti
ktjk
ktitek
ktik

ltom
ltod
ltja
ltjuk
ltjtok
ltjk

The definite conjugation is awesome! You dont have to deal with issues
the indefinite one has. The 1st and 2nd PS forms ALWAYS need a link
vowel with verbs in one or two consonants, and the rest does not
require any link vowel. You just attach the 3rd PS, 3rd PP, 1st PP, 2nd PP
suffixes as they are!

The 3rd PS form has to be conjugated in definite form: nzi, fogja!

But be careful! The link vowel only exists in 1st PS and 2nd PS!

So you have no problem with the exception verbs we talked about previously. Just add the definite
suffixes to them. Examples:
Deep verb 

mond (to say)


mondom, mondod, mondja, mondjuk, mondjtok, mondjk

High verb 

ment (to save)


mentem, mented, menti, mentjk, mentitek, mentik
gyjt (to collect)
gyjtm, gyjtd, gyjti, gyjtjk, gyjtitek, gyjtik

Monosyllabic verbs containing long like ft (to heat), ht (to cool), mt (to operate on) and
verbs ending in t are no problem either! They are regular in definite conjugation.
ft:

ftm, ftd, fti, ftjk, ftitek, ftik

ht:

htm, htd, hti, htjk, htitek, htik

mt: mtm, mtd, mti, mtjk, mtitek, mtik


segt: segtem, segted, segti, segtjk, segtitek, segtik
lazt: laztom, laztod, laztja, laztjuk, laztjtok, laztjk

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105

DEFINITE CONJUGATION + -LAK, -LEK


There is a pair of special suffixes for the definite conjugation. These are: -lak,

-lek.

They are used with transitive verbs when the 1st PS refers to the
2nd PS or to the 2nd PP! You can think of them as:

I + transitive verb + you


Examples:
Szeretlek.

I love you.

Utllak.

I hate you.

Ltlak.

I see you.

Nzlek.

I watch you.

Krlek.

I ask you.

and so on

As -lak, -lek refers to both 2nd PS and 2nd PP, you can add the accusative
pronouns tged or titeket.

Szeretlek tged.

I love you.

Szeretlek titeket.

I love you (guys).

Ltlak tged.

I see you.

Ltlak titeket.

I see you (guys).

Speaking of accusative pronouns, you can emphase them if needed.


Tged szeretlek.

I love you. (and not someone else)

Titeket szeretlek.

I love you (guys). (and not someone else)

Generally speaking, there is no need to add these accusative


pronouns unless the context is not clear.

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106

MIXED VERBS
Mixed verbs have high and deep vowels in them. Verbs ending in t are typical mixed verbs.

Its the same concept as for nouns:

short i / long / e / + deep vowel = deep-vowel verb


short i / long / e / + high vowel = high-vowel verb
The examples are in 1st PS:
, + deep vowel:

szlltok

(I transport)

csbtok

(I seduce)

, + high vowel:

srlk

(I get hurt)

szdlk

(I feel dizzy)

high vowel + -t:

lendtek

(I swing)

bltek

(I rinse)

deep vowel + -t:

szaktok

(I tear)

stok

(I yawn)

Monosyllabic verbs containing short i or long are deep-vowel verbs. The examples are in
3rd PP:
nyitnak

(they open)

brnak

(they endure)

szidnak

(they scold)

nyrnak

(they trim)

srnak

(they cry)

szvnak

(they smoke)

hvnak

(they call)

hznak

(they get fatter)

These rules for mixed verbs are valid for both definite and indefinite conjugation. So these verbs
are conjugated regularly, its just their highness or deepness that has to be decided
upon.
And now lets take a look at some more exceptions and irregular verbs. These will be:
Exceptions:

verbs ending in s, -sz, -z


the ik verbs

Irregular verbs:

17 really irregular verbs (with a pattern, though)

Note that the Hungarian language has only 17 irregular verbs in present tense. Other
verbs that look irregular are just exceptions in some way.

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107

VERBS IN -S, -SZ, -Z

Such verbs are exceptional in 2nd PS, indefinite conjugation! It is logical since
the standard suffix for the 2nd PS form is sz. It would be difficult to pronounce those
verbs. So we need a solution to our problem, and that is using these suffixes in
2nd PS with verbs in -s, -sz, -z:

-ol, -el, -l
Examples:

2ND PS SUFFIXES, HIGH VERBS:

2ND PS SUFFIXES, DEEP VERBS:

-el, -l  lesel, teszel, nzel, bkdsl

-ol mosol, mszol, rzol

They are also exceptional in definite conjugation in 1st PP, 2nd PP, 3rd PS,
3rd PP that is in the plural numbers.

The consonants -s, -sz, -z at the end of the verb assimilate with the j of the suffixes
-ja, -juk, -jk, -jtok, -jk!
Mostly with deep verbs because -jk is for high verbs.
Examples:

nz + jk
les + jk
tesz + jk

=
=
=

nzzk
lessk
tesszk

-JK

rz + juk
mos + juk
msz + juk

=
=
=

rzzuk
mossuk
msszuk

-JUK

rz + jtok
mos + jtok
msz + jtok

=
=
=

rzztok
mosstok
mssztok

-JTOK

rz + jk
mos + jk
msz + jk

=
=
=

rzzk
mossk
msszk

-JK

rz + ja
mos + ja
msz + ja

=
=
=

rzza
mossa
mssza

-JA

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108

THE IK VERBS
The -ik verbs have this name because they end in ik in 3rd PS indefinite conjugation.

The difference from other verbs are:


IN 1ST PS:

the suffix is m instead of k in indefinite conjugation, as well!

IN 2ND PS:

the suffixes are ol, -el, -l like for verbs in -s, -sz, -z because real -ik
verbs end in -s, -sz, -z, -d!

IN 3RD PS:

the suffix is ik in indefinite conjugation!

The plural indefinite conjugation and the entire definite conjugation are regular!
Examples: esik (to fall), ltzik (to dress up), szik (to swim), napozik (to sunbathe)
HIGH -IK VERBS:

DEEP -IK VERBS:

esni

ltzni

esem
esel
esik
esnk
estek
esnek

ltzm
ltzl
ltzik
ltznk
ltztk
ltznek

szni

napozni

szom
szol
szik
szunk
sztok
sznak

napozom
napozol
napozik
napozunk
napoztok
napoznak

NOTE! There verbs that also end in -ik, but only their form is the same. They are
false -ik verbs! REAL -IK VERBS END IN -S, -SZ, -Z, -D!
So you dont conjugate the verb eltnik (to disappear) as an -ik verb, but like a
regular verb: eltnk, eltnsz, eltnik

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109

17 IRREGULAR VERBS

van

to be

 intransitive verb, conjugation only with indefinite suffixes


lenni

to be

vagyok
vagy
van
vagyunk
vagytok
vannak

I am
you are
he/she/it is
we are
you are
they are

The 1st PS/PP and 2nd/PP forms have the root: vagy. The 3rd PS/PP forms have the root: van.

lesz

will be, to become, to get

 intransitive verb, conjugation only with indefinite suffixes


lenni

will be

leszek
leszel
lesz
lesznk
lesztek
lesznek

I will be
you will be
he/she/it will be
we will be
you will be
they will be

You just add the standard high suffixes. Not really irregular, but its meaning requires an
explanation.
The verb lesz can be translated with more verbs in English. Examples:
Ha keresel, otthon leszek.
A tej savany lesz, ha kint hagyod.
Egyre idegesebbek lesznek.

If you need me, I will be at home.


Milk becomes sour if you leave it outside.
Theyre getting more and more nervous.

IMPORTANT! The verbs van and lesz have the same infinitive:

lenni . Actually, van

borrows the infinitive from lenni. There is only one special expression when van has its own
infinitive form:
-Van ceruzd?
-Do you have a pencil?

-Vanni van, de nem adok.


-As a matter of fact I do, but I wont give you any.

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110

megy, jn

to go, to come

 intransitive verb, conjugation only with indefinite suffixes


menni

to go

jnni

to come

megyek
msz
megy
megynk
mentek
mennek

I go
you go
he/she/it goes
we go
you go
they go

jvk
jssz
jn
jvnk
jttk
jnnek

I come
you come
he/she/it comes
we come
you come
they come

NOTE! The Hungarian aspect of going and coming is as follows:


-Jssz sznhzba?
-Igen, megyek.

-Are you coming to the theatre?


-Yes, Im coming.

The answer is not jvk because the motion to somewhere is considered by the one
being asked. So Hungarian people answer: Yes, Im going.

eszik, iszik

to eat, to drink

 transitive verbs, conjugation with definite and indefinite suffixes

Indefinite:

enni

to eat

iszik

to drink

eszem
eszel
eszik
esznk
esztek
esznek

I eat
you eat
he/she/it eats
we eat
you eat
they eat

iszom
iszol
iszik
iszunk
isztok
isznak

I drink
you drink
he/she/it drinks
we drink
you drink
they drink

ESZIK, ISZIK: These are -ik verbs, so the 1st PS indefinite form has the suffix m, too.

Definite:

ESZIK:
ISZIK:

enni

to eat

iszik

to drink

eszem
eszed
eszi
esszk
eszitek
eszik

I eat
you eat
he/she/it eats
we eat
you eat
they eat

iszom
iszod
issza
isszuk
issztok
isszk

I drink
you drink
he/she/it drinks
we drink
you drink
they drink

The 1st PP form is esszk due to the assimilation of sz + -jk!


The 3rd PP definite form is the same as the 3rd PS indefinite form: eszik!
Except the 1st PS and 2nd PS, all the other forms suffer assimilation!

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111

alszik, nyugszik, fekszik

to sleep, to rest, to lie

 transitive and intransitive verbs


conjugation with definite and indefinite suffixes
These are ik verbs, too. However, when conjugated, they lose a SHORT U or SHORT !

Indefinite:

aludni

to sleep nyugodni to rest

fekdni

to lie

alszom
alszol
alszik
alszunk
alszotok
alszanak

I sleep
you sleep
he sleeps
we sleep
you sleep
they sleep

fekszem
fekszel
fekszik
feksznk
fekszetek
fekszenek

I lie
you lie
he lies
we lie
you lie
they lie

nyugszom
nyugszol
nyugszik
nyugszunk
nyugszotok
nyugszanak

I drink
you drink
he drinks
we drink
you drink
they drink

ALUDNI:
Other possible form for 2nd PP: alusztok. Other possible form for 3rd PP: alusznak.

NYUGODNI:
Other possible form for 2nd PP: nyugodtok. Other possible form for 3rd PP: nyugodnak.
Other possible form for 1st PP: nyugodunk.

FEKDNI:
Other possible form for 2nd PP: fekdtk. Other possible form for 3rd PP: fekdnek.
When there are more ways to conjugate verbs, you choose which form to use.
The definite conjugation for these verbs is a bit more complicated:
NYUGSZIK:
ALSZIK, FEKSZIK:

No definite conjugation!
They have a definite conjugation, but they usually need a verbal prefix
to become transitive. Examples: kialudni, kifekdni

Definite:

kialudni

to sleep

kifekdni to lie

kialszom
kialszod
kialussza
kialusszuk
kialussztok
kialusszk

I sleep off
you sleep off
he sleeps off
we sleep off
you sleep off
they sleep off

kifekszem
kifekszed
kifekszi
kifekdjk
kifekszitek
kifekszik

I stay in bed
you stay in bed
he stays in bed
we stay in bed
you stay in bed
they stay in bed

Examples:
Kialusszuk a fradalmakat.
Kifekszed a lzadat, rendben?

Well sleep off the tiredness.


Youll stay in bed until your fever is gone, all right?

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112

n, l, sz, r

to grow, to shoot, to weave, to notch

 transitive and intransitive verbs


conjugation with definite and indefinite suffixes
These are V-verbs. They are like V-nouns. When conjugated, they get a v inserted in certain
forms. The long changes to short in some forms.
Usually, they can have the definite suffixes when they become phrasal verbs. Similarly to
alszik, fekszik.

Indefinite:

nni

lni

szni

rni

nvk
nsz
n
nvnk
ntk
nnek

lvk
lsz
l
lvnk
ltk
lnek

szvk
szsz
sz
szvnk
sztk
sznek

rovok
rsz
r
rovunk
rotok
rnak

You see that the 1st PS and 1st PP forms get a v inserted and they have short in them!
Now lets see the definite conjugation with phrasal verbs: kin (to grow out), lel (to shoot),
megsz (to weave), megr (to reprehend)

Definite:

nni

lni

szni

rni

kinvm
kinvd
kinvi
kinjk
kinvitek
kinvik

lelvm
lelvd
lelvi
leljk
lelvitek
lelvik

megszvm
megszvd
megszvi
megszjk
megszvitek
megszvik

megrovom
megrovod
megrja
megrjuk
megrjtok
megrjk

No comment. Just learn the conjugation.


Examples:
Children grow out their clothes quickly.
The hunter shoots the deer.
Well weave the blanket.
Were going to reprehend our daughter.

A gyerekek hamar kinvik a ruhjukat.


A vadsz lelvi a szarvast.
Megszjk a takart.
Megrjuk a lnyunkat.

There are two other verbs we should talk about: r (to cry), f (to boil)
The verb r (only with indefinite suffixes) is not really used unless as noun in expressions like:
Mi ez a nagy srs-rvs? What is all the crying about?
The verb f (only with indefinite suffixes) only makes sense when conjugated in 3rd PS.
Examples: F a leves.
The soup is boiling.
Fnek a burgonyk.
The potatoes are being cooked.
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113

tesz, vesz, hisz, visz

to put, to buy, to believe, to bring

 transitive and intransitive verbs


conjugation with definite and indefinite suffixes
These verbs are peculiar because their infinitive is -nni: tenni, venni, hinni, vinni. And the 3rd
PS indefinite form cannot be derived from the infinitive form. When conjugated, they get an sz
inserted in all forms in present tense.

INDEFINITE DEFINITE INDEFINITE DEFINITE INDEFINITE DEFINITE INDEFINITE DEFINITE


tenni
venni
hinni
vinni
teszek
teszel
tesz
tesznk
tesztek
tesznek

teszem
teszed
teszi
tesszk
teszitek
teszik

veszek
veszel
vesz
vesznk
vesztek
vesznek

veszem
veszed
veszi
vesszk
veszitek
veszik

hiszek
hiszel
hisz
hisznk
hisztek
hisznek

hiszem
hiszed
hiszi
hisszk
hiszitek
hiszik

viszek
viszel
visz
visznk
visztek
visznek

viszem
viszed
viszi
visszk
viszitek
viszik

EXPRESSING FUTURE ACTS WITH PRESENT TENSE


This should present no difficulty to a native English speaker. Present Simple Continous also has the
function to refer to future acts in English. The Hungarian present tense is used for that purpose, as
well.
NOTE! The Hungarian present tense is used to express future acts more often than the
paraphrased future tense. If you know the present tense with all its peculiarities and suffixes,
you know the future! Examples:
Im leaving this evening.
Are you coming with me?
Theyre studying law for five years.
Im going to meet her in an hour.

Ma este elmegyek.
Velem jssz?
Jogot tanulnak t vig.
Egy ra mlva tallkozok vele.

TIME EXPRESSIONS FOR PRESENT TENSE


I see him all the time.
Were running from three oclock to four.
Weve been running a lot.

Folyamatosan tallkozunk.
Hromtl ngyig futunk.
Sokat futottunk.

English likes to express nuances of time. Hungarian doesnt care about it. Note that the last
Hungarian example (futottunk) is in the past tense! The explanation is given with the Past Tense
below.

PPEN
You can make tenses continous with this adverb: ppen meaning right now / at the moment.
ppen unalmas mondatokat rok.
A ruht varrod ppen?

Im writing boring sentences.


Are you sewing the clothes?

The present/past/future tense can express a continous action by themselves, though.


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114

PAST TENSE
There is only one past tense in Hungarian: mlt id. The four English past tenses and sometimes
the Present Perfect Tense are to be translated with the one Hungarian past tense.

t, -tt. Not to be confused with the accusative case t

The endings for the past tense are: -

added to nouns! And here is an example how you form the past tense:

nztem

nz + -t + -em  I watched

So the formula is: 3rd PS present tense indefinite verb + -t ending + suffix

See? If you know the present tense suffixes, youre half for it.

The other forms also need attention, but it is more memorizing them than being careful with
exceptions.

Verbs in the past tense can be divided into three groups:

GROUP 1:

Most verbs take the one -t past tense ending without a link vowel.

GROUP 2:
Monosyllabic verbs in t (ktttem, futottam)
Verbs ending in 2 consonants (rejtettem, gyjtottam)
Verbs ending in the suffix t (segtettem, aprtottam)
take the double tt past tense ending with link vowels in all numbers/persons.
The only exception is lt which belongs to Group 1!

GROUP 3:

Some other verbs in need of a more detailed explanation

Note! Verbs ending in J L N NY R take the 3rd PS ending with no link vowel:
fjt, lt, megbnt, hnyt, szrt

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115

HIGH AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH INDEFINITE CONJUGATION


INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
vezet (to drive), kt (to knit), rak (to put)

FINAL SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(ot)tam, -(et)tem, -(t)tem


-(ot)tl, -(et)tl, -(t)tl
-ott, -ett, -tt
-(ot)tunk, -(et)tnk, -(t)tnk
-(ot)tatok, -(et)tetek, -(t)tetek
-(ot)tak, -(et)tek, -(t)tek

vezettem
vezettl
vezetett
vezettnk
vezettetek
vezettek

ktttem
ktttl
kttt
ktttnk
ktttetek
ktttek

raktam
raktl
rakott
raktunk
raktatok
raktak

Watch carefully the 3rd PS form! They are: -ott, -ett, -tt. The ending -tt is used with verbs
containing , , , .
The table above lists examples with verbs from Group 1 and Group 2.

HIGH AND DEEP-VOWEL VERBS WITH DEFINITE CONJUGATION


DEFINITE CONJUGATION
vezet (to drive), kt (to knit), rak (to put)

FINAL SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(ot)tam, -(et)tem, -(t)tem


-(ot)tad, -(et)ted, -(t)ted
-(ot)ta, -(et)te, -(t)te
-(ot)tuk, -(et)tk, -(t)tk
-(ot)ttok, -(et)ttek, -(t)ttek
-(ot)tk, -(et)tk, -(t)tk

vezettem
vezetted
vezette
vezettk
vezetttek
vezettk

ktttem
kttted
kttte
ktttk
kttttek
ktttk

raktam
raktad
rakta
raktuk
rakttok
raktk

As you see the rule for verbs belonging to Group 2 is still valid. Those verbs take a link vowel +
double tt in all numbers/persons!  otta, -ette, -tte . More examples for Group 2 verbs:

ttted, gyjttted, sejtetted, nyjtottad, segtetted


NOTE! The verb LT (to see) is the only monosyllabic verb belonging to Group 1, so it takes
no link vowel in the past tense.
Indefinite:

lttam, lttl, ltott, lttunk, lttatok, lttak

Definite:

lttam, lttad, ltta, lttuk, ltttok, lttk

ALSO NOTE! The 1st PS indefinite and definite conjugation are the same: -tam, -tem!!!

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116

GROUP 3: THESE VERBS TAKE THE -OTT, -ETT, -TT ENDINGS IN THE 3RD PS INDEFINITE
FORM. THE OTHER FORMS DO NOT NEED A LINK VOWEL!

5 verbs ending in -ad, -ed:


fogadott

(to receive)

tagadott

(to deny)

szenvedett

(to suffer)

engedett

(to allow)

tvedett

(to be wrong)

Any other verb with the same ending simply takes one t: ragadt, dagadt, and so
onPlus verbs in -at, -et always need a link vowel: kutatott, nevetett

The monosyllabic verbs hv, szv and other monosyllabic verbs containing
long , short i and ending in 2 consonants are deep-vowel verbs:

hvott

(to call)

szvott

(to smoke)

irtott

(to slaughter)

tiltott

(to forbid)

The verbs mond, kld, kezd:


mondott

(to say)

kldtt

(to send)

kezdett

(to begin, to start)

Three verbs ll, szll, hull can take both the one t ending and the double tt
ending with a link vowel in 3rd PS indefinite conjugation.
The one t ending is more common nowadays:
llt / llott

(to stand)

szllt / szllott

(to fly)

hullt / hullott

(to fall)

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117

Now about the exception verbs we talked about with Present Tense.

Verbs ending in -s, -sz, -z

The -ik verbs

The vereb alszik, nyugszik, fekszik

are regular in the Past Tense

There are, however, four verbs in -sz with irregular features in Past Tense:

visz (to bring) hisz (to believe)

vesz (to buy)

tesz (to put, to do)

The sz in these verbs changes to double tt. Here is their entire conjugation:

INDEFINITE
vinni
vittem
vittl
vitt
vittnk
vittetek
vittek

hinni
hittem
hittl
hitt
hittnk
hittetek
hittek

venni
vettem
vettl
vett
vettnk
vettetek
vettek

DEFINITE
tenni
tettem
tettl
tett
tettnk
tettetek
tettek

vinni
vittem
vitted
vitte
vittk
vitttek
vittk

hinni
hittem
hitted
hitte
hittk
hitttek
hittk

venni
vettem
vetted
vette
vettk
vetttek
vettk

tenni
tettem
tetted
tette
tettk
tetttek
tettk

The V-verbs have the same characteristic. Contrary to Present Tense, the past tense forms
always keep the long ! The verb r keeps its long !

INDEFINITE
nni
nttem
nttl
ntt
nttnk
nttetek
nttek

lni
lttem
lttl
ltt
lttnk
lttetek
lttek

szni
szttem
szttl
sztt
szttnk
szttetek
szttek

DEFINITE
rni
rttam
rttl
rtt
rttunk
rttatok
rttak

nni
nttem
ntted
ntte
nttk
ntttek
nttk

lni
lttem
ltted
ltte
lttk
ltttek
lttk

szni
szttem
sztted
sztte
szttk
sztttek
szttk

rni
rttam
rttad
rtta
rttuk
rtttok
rttk

And the verb f only makes sense in 3rd PS and 3rd PP: ftt, fttek.
The same double tt rule is valid for r (you know the verb we dont really use):
rttam, rttl, rtt, rttunk, rttatok, rttak

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118

And of course, we have to talk about the other irregular verbs: lenni, menni, jnni, enni, inni.
Aludni, fekdni, nyugodni are regular in the past tense.

lenni

 only indefinite conjugation


INDEFINITE
van
voltam
voltl
volt
voltunk
voltatok
voltak

lesz
lettem
lettl
lett
lettnk
lettetek
lettek

NOTE! The verb lesz belongs to those sz verbs: tesz, vesz, hisz, visz!

Examples:
Hol voltl?

Where have you been?

Az irodban voltam.

I was in the office.

Voltatok mr Knban?

Have you ever been in China?

Hirtelen mrges lettem.

Suddenly I got angry.

A tej savany lett.

The milk became sour.

Hov lettek a jegyzeteim?

Where are my notes gone?

menni, jnni

 only indefinite conjugation

enni, inni

 definite and indefinite conjugation


INDEFINITE

menni
mentem
mentl
ment
mentnk
mentetek
mentek

jnni
jttem
jttl
jtt
jttnk
jttetek
jttek

enni
ettem
ettl
evett
ettnk
ettetek
ettek

DEFINITE
inni menni jnni
ittam ittl
ivott
ittunk
ittatok
ittak

enni
ettem
etted
ette
ettk
etttek
ettk

inni
ittam
ittad
itta
ittuk
itttok
ittk

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PRESENT, PAST OR BOTH?

The confusion originates from the fact that theres a transition between the
present and the past in English. It is called: Present Perfect. It is not quite
present and not quite past. An action expressed with Present Perfect begins in the
past, continues in the present, and maybe goes on in the future.

As the Hungarian language has a clear idea about time, present and past are
separated from each other. No transition. Youll look at this with a clearer mind
if we translate a sentence in a positive and negative way.

POSITIVE

NEGATIVE

Mr egy hete tanulok magyarul.


Mr egy hete nem tanultam / tanulok magyarul.
Ive been learning Hungarian for a week. I havent been learning Hungarian for a week.

The positive Present Perfect sentence is translated with the present tense in
Hungarian. The negative sentence is usually translated with the past tense, but
as you see above, sometimes you can use present tense with negative sentences,
too.

To avoid confusion, I recommend you translate positive Present Perfect sentences with the
present tense and negative Present Perfect sentences with the past tense.
Or if this helps you more:
English:
Present Perfect Positive Present Perfect Negative



Hungarian: Present Tense jelen id
Past Tense mlt id

An example for a sentence when you definitely cant use present tense:
Hrom ve nem lttalak.

I havent seen you for three years.

It doesnt make any sense translating it with the present tense, does it? The past
tense is the right choice.

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120

FUTURE TENSE
As Ive mentioned several times, there is no specific future tense you can form with suffixes.
Mostly the present tense is used. There is a paraphrased form, though.

The future tense is called: jv id.

Formation: It is formed with the conjugated forms of the auxiliary verb fog in
present tense and the infinitive form of the main verb.
Example: Ltni fogom. I will see it.

Now lets see the conjugation!

FUTURE TENSE
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni

fogok
fogsz
fog
egy filmet.
fogunk
fogtok
fognak

I will see
You will see
He/She will see a movie.
We will see
You will see
They will see

FUTURE TENSE
DEFINITE CONJUGATION
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni
Ltni

fogom
fogod
fogja
a filmet.
fogjuk
fogjtok
fogjk

I will see
You will see
He/She will see the movie.
We will see
You will see
They will see

This construction cannot be separated from each other: Ltni a filmet fogom.
But it can be emphased: Fogom ltni a filmet.

Examples for present tense instead of future tense:


Gramatically correct:
More common:

Holnap moziba fogok menni.


Holnap moziba megyek.

If you talk about a really really future act, you can use future tense, too:
Jv ilyenkor Madriban fogok nyaralni.

This time next year Ill be on vacation in Madrid.

If the main verb is a phrasal verb, then the verbal prefix is separated from it:
megjavt  meg fogom javtani
Ne aggdj! Meg fogom javtani a kertst. Dont worry! Ill repair the fence.

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121

MAJD
This word is somewhat like will in this respect:
promise for a future act, offering something I promise Ill do
The construction is: majd
a form doesnt exist.

+ present tense . Do not use future tense with majd. Such

NOTE! Majd is widely used in the spoken language.


Majd megcsinlom.

Ill do it.

Anya: -Megfzted a vacsort?


Lnya: -Nem, de majd megfzm.
Hg: Inkbb majd n!

Mother: -Did you cook the dinner?


Daughter: -No, but Ill cook it later.
Little Sister: -Ill do it!

It can also express derogatory shades:


Az ingedet meg majd n vasalom ki, nem?

And I will iron your shirt for you, right?

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122

MOODS
The moods are three: indicative, imperative, conditional.
We have already dealt with the indicative mood. Present, past and future tense are all in
indicative mood.

IMPERATIVE MOOD
The Hungarian term for imperative mood is: felszlt md. It has one tense: present. The
Hungarian imperative has suffixes attached to the verb in all numbers/persons. Even for
the 1st person singular!
Lets see what sentences can be considered imperative first:
Menj!
Hagyd abba!
Gyere ide!
Ne kiablj!

Go.
Stop it.
Come here.
Dont shout.

Hungarian imperative sentences always end with the exclamation mark! No matter how
gentle or wild the exclamation is.
The problem comes for a Hungarian student learning English (and so it might be a problem for you
as a native English speaker) when its about 3rd PS, 3rd PP and 1st PP. English paraphrases such
exclamations, while Hungarian has its suffixes to each.
Menjnk!
Hagyja abba!
Jjjenek!
Ne kiabljanak!

Lets go.
Hed better stop it.
Theyd better come.
Theyd better not shout. / They shouldnt shout.

-Mit csinljunk?
-Jtsszunk!

-What do/shall we do now?


-Lets play.

The 1st PS form is used when English says Shall I? and in the following situations:
Kelljek fel korn?
Menjek vsrolni?
Azt akarja, hogy legyek csendben.

Shall I get up early?


Shall I go shopping?
He wants me to be quite. / He wants that I be quite.

NOTE!
In the last sentence you see the 1st PS imperative form of the substantive verb (legyek).
English, however, likes simplifying such sentences (he wants me to be), but it is possible to use
subjunctive mood (he wants that I be).

THE HUNGARIAN SOLUTION IS MORE LIKE


THE NOT REALLY USED ENGLISH SUBJUNCTIVE MOOD!

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CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


The ending for the imperative mood is:

-j

Formation: indefinite 3rd PS verb + -j ending + the proper suffix for number/person

kr + -j + -en = krjen  he had better ask


INDEFINITE SUFFIXES FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD:
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
l (to live), szl (to bear), jr (to walk)

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-jek, -jak
-j OR -jl, -jl
-jen, -jn, -jon
-jnk, -junk
-jetek, -jatok
-jenek, -janak

ljek
lj, ljl
ljen
ljnk
ljetek
ljenek

szljek
szlj, szljl
szljn
szljnk
szljetek
szljenek

jrjak
Jrj, jrjl
jrjon
jrjunk
jrjatok
jrjanak

Verbs with , , , take the suffix jn in 3rd PS!

The 2nd PS form can just have a j for both high and deep or you can use the
long version -jl, -jl. You choose.

DEFINITE SUFFIXES FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD:


DEFINITE CONJUGATION
l (to live), szl (to bear), jr (to walk)

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-jem, -jam
-d OR -jed, -jad
-je, -ja
-jk, -juk
-jtek, -jtok
-jk, -jk

ljem
ld, ljed
lje
ljk
ljtek
ljk

szljem
szld, szljed
szlje
szljk
szljtek
szljk

jrjam
Jrd, jrjad
jrja
jrjuk
jrjtok
jrjk

Verbs with , , , have no suffix for them!

The 2nd PS form can just have a d for both high and deep or you can use the
long version -jed, -jad. You choose.

NO LINK VOWEL IS NEEDED FOR EITHER OF THE IMPERATIVE CONJUGATION FORMS!

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EXCEPTIONS AND IRREGULAR VERBS


Such verbs are tricky in imperative mood because their final consonant suffers assimilation
with the imperative ending -j , which means that the last consonant of the verb gives its
features to the -j ending. The consonants in question are:

sz

Verbs in two consonants / in -t are typical verbs suffering assimilation in imperative mood!
Examples:
s+j =

ss

mos + -jon =

mosson

sz + j =

ssz

jtsz + -jon =

jtsszon

z+j =

zz

nz + -jen

nzzen

t+j =

ts

klt + -jn

kltsn

j+j =

jj

fj + -jon

fjjon

EXCEPTIONAL VERBS
VERBS IN -S, -SZ, -Z AND IK VERBS. Examples:
les (to peep), enyszik (to dwindle), nz (to watch)
mos (to wash), szik (to swim), rz (to shake)

INDEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


HIGH
DEEP
lesni
lessek
less / lessl
lessen
lessnk
lessetek
lessenek

jtszani*
enysszek
enyssz / enysszl
enysszen
enyssznk
enysszetek
enysszenek

nzni
nzzek
nzz / nzzl
nzzen
nzznk
nzzetek
nzzenek

mosni
mossak
moss / mossl
mosson
mossunk
mossatok
mossanak

szni
sszam
ssz / sszl
sszon
sszunk
sszatok
sszanak

rzni
rzzak
rzz / rzzl
rzzon
rzzunk
rzzatok
rzzanak

DEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


HIGH
DEEP
lesni
lessem
lesd / lessed
lesse
lessk
lesstek
lessk

jtszani
enysszem
enyszd / enysszed
enyssze
enysszk
enyssztek
enysszk

nzni
nzzem
nzd / nzzed
nzze
nzzk
nzztek
nzzk

mosni
mossam
mosd / mossad
mossa
mossuk
mosstok
mossk

szni
sszam
szd / sszad
ssza
sszuk
ssztok
sszk

rzni
rzzam
rzd / rzzad
rzza
rzzuk
rzztok
rzzk

NOTE! The shorter 2nd PS definite form has one s, sz, z, instead of two: lesd, nzd, rzd
The verb enyszik does not make much in sense in some P/N, but its good for an example
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V-VERBS
V-verbs are quite regular in imperative mood! I write the conjugation, nontheless.

INDEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


nni
njek
nj / njl
njn
njnk
njetek
njenek

lni
ljek
lj / ljl
ljn
ljnk
ljetek
ljenek

szni
szjek
szj / szjl
szjn
szjnk
szjetek
szjenek

fni
fjn
fjenek

rni
rjak
rj / rjl
rjon
rjunk
rjatok
rjanak

The verb fni can be conjugated, but doesnt really make any sense. You dont say Im being
cooked. in English, either.

DEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


nni
njem
ndd / njed
nje
njk
njtek
njk

lni
ljem
ldd / ljed
lje
ljk
ljtek
ljk

szni
szjem
szdd / szjed
szje
szjk
szjtek
szjk

fni
fje
fjk

rni
rjam
rdd / rjad
rja
rjuk
rjtok
rjk

Remember! The V-words can be conjugated with the definite suffixes, but some becomes a
phrasal verb: kin, megr, elf.

IRREGULAR VERBS
lenni  only one conjugation form for both van and lesz! Only indefinite conjugation!
legyek lgy / legyl legyen legynk legyetek legyenek

menni, jnni  only the indefinite conjugation is possible.


menjek menj / menjl menjen menjnk menjetek menjenek
jjjek
gyere
jjjn
jjjnk
gyertek
jjjenek

monosyllabic verbs in t with a long vowel or in 2 consonants 


They take TS for imperative mood for all numbers/persons, in definite and indefinite
conjugation. The ts is spelled like a double CCS. The only exception is LT.
ft
ejt
gyjt
szt

ftsek, fts, ftsnftsem, ftsed, ftse


ejtsek, ejts, ejtsenejtsem, ejtsed, ejtse
gyjtsak, gyjts, gyjtsongyjtsam, gyjtsad, gyjtsa
sztsak, szts, sztsonsztsam, sztsad, sztsa

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126

tesz, vesz, hisz, visz, eszik, iszik  both indefinite and definite conjugation!
The final sz of these verbs changes into gy in imperative mood!

INDEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


tenni
tegyek
tgy / tegyl
tegyen
tegynk
tegyetek
tegyenek

venni
vegyek
vgy / vegyl
vegyen
vegynk
vegyetek
vegyenek

hinni
higgyek
higgy /higgyl
higgyen
higgynk
higgyetek
higgyenek

vinni
vigyek
vigyl
vigyen
vigynk
vigyetek
vigyenek

enni
egyem
egyl
egyen
egynk
egyetek
egyenek

inni
igyam
igyl
igyon
igyunk
igyatok
igyanak

DEFINITE CONJUGATION FOR IMPERATIVE MOOD


tenni
tegyem
tedd / tegyed
tegye
tegyk
tegytek
tegyk

venni
vegyem
vedd / vegyed
vegye
vegyk
vegytek
vegyk

hinni
higgyem
hidd /higgyed
higgye
higgyk
higgytek
higgyk

vinni
vigyem
vidd / vigyed
vigye
vigyk
vigytek
vigyk

enni
egyem
egyed
egye
egyk
egytek
egyk

inni
igyam
igyad
igya
igyuk
igytok
igyk

NOTE! The verb hinni takes double ggy in indefinite and definite conjugation!

verbs in d
They take one single -d for imperative mood in 2nd PS short form!
fed fedd

ad add

tagad tagadd

enged engedd

mond mondd

verbs in t with a short vowel


They take double -ss for imperative mood in all numbers/persons, in definite and
indefinite conjugation!
t ss

fut fuss

nevet nevess

kutat kutass

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127

CONDITIONAL MOOD
Verbs in conditional mood express uncertainty or (surprisingly enough) a sort of condition.
Two tenses can be used for that in Hungarian: present, past.
The good news is that Hungarian verbs in conitional mood are equal, meaning verbs ending
in -s, -sz, -z and ik verbs, as well as those V-verbs are to be conjugated in a regular way. Verbs in
two consonants, in -t / with long in t take the conditional suffixes with a link vowel.
These verbs are irregular in conditional mood, too: van, lesz, megy, jn, eszik, iszik, tesz,
vesz, hisz, visz.

PRESENT CONDITIONAL
The ending for present conditional is:

-n

Formation: fut + -n + -k = futnk  I would run

INDEFINITE SUFFIXES FOR CONDITIONAL MOOD:


INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
l (to live), szl (to bear), jr (to walk)

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(e)nk, -a(nk)!!!
-(e)nl, -(a)nl
-(e)ne, -(a)na
-(e)nnk, -(a)nnk
-(e)ntek, -(a)ntok
-(e)nnek, -(a)nnak

lnk
lnl
lne
lnnk
lntek
lnnek

szlnk
szlnl
szlne
szlnnk
szlntek
szlnnek

jrnk
Jrnl
jrna
jrnnk
jrntok
jrnnak

Verbs with , , , have no special suffix for them!


IMPORTANT! The 1st PS form is the same exact suffix for both high and
deep-vowel verbs in indefinite conjugation: -nk !!!

DEFINITE SUFFIXES FOR CONDITIONAL MOOD:


DEFINITE CONJUGATION
l (to live), szl (to bear), jr (to walk)

SUFFIXES

EXAMPLES FOR HIGH VERBS EXAMPLES FOR DEEP VERBS

-(e)nm, -(a)nm
-(e)nd, -(a)nd
-(e)n, -(a)n
-(e)nnk, -(a)nnk
-(e)ntek, -(a)ntok
-(e)nk, -(a)nk

lnm
lnd
ln
lnnk
lntek
lnk

szlnm
szlnd
szln
szlnnk
szlntek
szlnk

jrnm
Jrnd
jrn
jrnnk
jrntok
jrnk

The 1st PP and 2nd PP form is the same for indefinite and definite
conjugation!

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128

IRREGULAR VERBS

lenni  Only indefinite conjugation!


volnk
volnl
volna
volnnk
volntok
volnnak

lennk
lennl
lenne
lennnk
lenntek
lennnek

If we want to be faithful to grammatical correctness, we should know that lesz refers to the future.
Well, on the principle. In the spoken language, these forms are often interchanged.
Ha gazdag volnk, kastlyban lnk.
Ha gazdag lennk, kastlyban lnk.

If I were rich, Id live in a castle.


If I were rich, Id live in a castle.

Use whichever van or lesz you want in conditional mood.

menni, jnni  Only indefinite conjugation!


mennk
mennl
menne
mennnk
menntek
mennnek

jnnk
jnnl
jnne
jnnnk
jnntek
jnnnek

enni, inni  Definite and indefinite conjugation!


Indefinite
ennk
innk
ennl
innl
enne
inna
ennnk innnk
enntek inntok
ennnek innnak

Definite
ennm innm
ennd
innd
enn
inn
ennnk innnk
enntek inntok
ennk
innk

tenni, venni, vinni, hinni  Definite and indefinite conjugation!


Indefinite
tennk
vennk
vinnk
tennl
vennl
vinnl
tenne
venne
vinne
tennnk vennnk vinnnk
tenntek venntek vinntek
tennnek vennnek vinnnek

Definite
hinnk
tennm vennm vinnm
hinnl
tennd
vennd
vinnd
hinne
tenn
venn
vinn
hinnnk tennnk vennnk vinnnk
hinntek tenntek venntek vinntek
hinnnek tennk
vennk
vinnk

hinnm
hinnd
hinn
hinnnk
hinntek
hinnk

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129

MORE EXAMPLES FOR CONDITIONAL MOOD:


-Ennl fagyit?
-Igen, ennk.

-Would you eat some ice?


-Yes, I would (eat).

-Szeretnnek klfdre utazni?


-Persze, hogy szeretnnek.

-Would they like to travel abroad?


-Sure they would (like to).

Csak mr ltnnk a vgeredmnyt!

If only we saw the end result!

-Rlntek a frissen festett padra?


-Nem, nem lnnk.

-Would sit on the wet painted bench?


-No, we wouldnt (sit on it).

POLITE EXPRESSIONS
Szeretnl inni valamit?
Ksznm, szeretnk.

Would you like to have a drink?


Thank you, I would.

Szeretnm megkrdezni, hogy

Id like to ask if

Elnzst, meg tudn mondani


Elnzst, meg tudn mondani, mennyi az id?
Meg tudn mondani, hol van az lloms?

Excuse me, could you tell me


Excuse me, could you tell me the time?
Could you tell me where the station is?

Nem bnn, ha rgyjtank?

Would you mind me smoking?

Lennl/Volnl szves eloltani a cigarettt?

Would you be so kind as to put out the


cigarette? (2nd PS)

Lenne/Volna szves eloltani a cigarettt?

Would you be so kind as to put out the


cigarette? (polite form, 3rd PS in Hungarian)

OR if you talk to more people:


Lennnek/Volnnak szvesek eloltani a cigarettt?
Would you be so kind as to put out the cigarette? (polite form, 3rd PP in Hungarian)

WISHES
ENGLISH:

HUNGARIAN:

If only + past simple / past perfect


I wish I could

Ha + present conditional / past conditional


Brcsak + present conditional / past conditional

If only I could see her again!


If only I could have seen her again!

Ha jra lthatnm!
Ha jra lthattam volna!

I wish he came at last.


I wish he had come.

Brcsak jnne mr!


Brcsak eljtt volna!

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130

PAST CONDITIONAL
Past conditional expresses a condition in the past . The Hungarian past conditional is easy to
form provided you know how to form the indicative past tense.
All you need to do is to conjugate the verb in the indicative past tense and put the
auxiliary verb volna after it.
Formation:

futottam + volna = I would have run


Here are two examples for high and deep verbs. Only two examples because if a verb is irregular,
then its past tense is irregular, not the past conditional itself.

HIGH VERB
Indefinite
nztem volna
nztl volna
nzett volna
nztnk volna
nztetek volna
nztek volna

DEEP VERB

Definite
nztem volna
nzted volna
nzte volna
nztk volna
nzttek volna
nztk volna

Indefinite
mondtam volna
mondtl volna
mondott volna
mondtunk volna
mondtatok volna
mondtak volna

Definite
mondtam volna
mondtad volna
mondta volna
mondtuk volna
mondttok volna
mondtk volna

NOTE! The auxiliary verb volna and the main verb cannot be separated. The example is:
I wouldve seen the movie, but




Lttam volna a filmet, de


Lttam a filmet volna, de

HOW WOULD I HAVE BEEN?


It is a legitimate question since none of the Hungarian tenses are compound tenses! English
has compound tenses: I have seen, I had seen
So how the heck do we express the past conditional forms of the substantive verb lenni? The
conjugation is the same for both van and lesz.
1st PS
2nd PS
3rd PS
1st PP
2nd PP
3rd PP

lettem volna
lettl volna
lett volna
lettnk volna
lettetek volna
lettek volna

I would have been


you would have been
he/she/it would have been
we would have been
you would have been
they would have been

You see its just the indicative past tense form of the verb lesz + volna.

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131

CONDITIONAL CLAUSES
Conditional clauses describe real (condition 1), possible (condition 2) and impossible
(condition 3) conditions.

Usually such sentences (if-clauses) begin with the conjunction if whose Hungarian
equivalent is: ha

Besides, English makes a difference between condition 0 and condition 1. Hungarian


doesnt.

Examples and explanation:


CONDITION 0:

If you run a lot, you get tired.


Ha sokat futsz, elfradsz.

Hungarian uses present tense for the main and subordinate clauses.
 GENERALIZATION
CONDITION 1:

If you run a lot, you will get tired.


Ha sokat futsz, elfradsz.

Hungarian uses present tense for the main and subordinate clauses.
 REAL CONDITION
CONDITION 2:

If you ran a lot, you would get tired.


Ha sokat futnl, elfradnl.

Hungarian uses present conditional for the main and subordinate clauses.
 POSSIBLE CONDITION
CONDITION 3:

If you had run a lot, you would have got tired.


Ha sokat futottl volna, elfradtl volna.

Hungarian uses past conditional for the main and subordinate clauses.
 IMPOSSIBLE CONDITION
You see Hungarian is much more consequent about dealing with conditions. Heres a summary
table to prove that:

ENGLISH
Cond. 0
Cond. 1
Cond. 2
Cond. 3

Main clause
Present Tense
Future Tense
Present Conditional
Past Conditional

Subordinate clause
Present Tense
Present Tense
Past Simple
Past Perfect

HUNGARIAN
Main clause
Present Tense
Present Tense
Present Conditional
Past Conditional

Subordinate clause
Present Tense
Present Tense
Present Conditional
Past Conditional

Of course, you can begin the sentence with the main clause, too. Hungarian uses a comma
whatever sentence you make: Elfradsz, ha sokat futsz. OR Ha sokat futsz, elfradsz.
Lets see some more examples:
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132

CONDITIONAL 0 AND 1
Ha eszel, kvr leszel.
Ha szeretsz, elmondod.
Ha nem tanulnak, megbuknak.
Ha felkelnk, odarnk.

If you eat, youll be fat.


If you love me, youll tell me.
If they dont learn, theyll fail.
If we get up, we will get there.

CONDITIONAL 2
Ha ennl, kvr lennl.
Ha szeretnl, elmondand.
Ha nem tanulnnak, megbuknnak.
Ha felkelnnk, odarnnk.

If you ate, youd be fat.


If you loved me, youd tell me.
If they didnt learn, theyd fail.
If we got up, we would get there.

CONDITIONAL 3
Ha ettl volna, kvr lettl volna.
Ha szerettl volna, elmondtad volna.
Ha nem tanultak volna, megbuktak volna.
Ha felkeltnk volna, odartnk volna.

If you had eaten, you wouldve been fat.


Had you loved me, you wouldve told me.
Hadnt they learned, they wouldve failed.
Had we got up, we wouldve got there.

And a nerdy sentence:


Ha itt lennl, nem lennl mshol.

If you were here, you wouldnt be elsewhere.

HA NEM + PRESENT CONDITIONAL / PAST CONDITIONAL


This construction is translated in English like this: were

it not for

Ha nem dmrl volna sz, nem rdekelne.


Were it not for Adam, I wouldnt care.
Ha nem dmrl lett volna sz, nem rdekelt volna.
Were it not for Adam, I wouldnt have cared.
Ha nem esne az es, nem szllna el a tet.
Were it not for the rain, the roof wouldnt fly away.
Ha nem esett volna az es, nem szllt volna el a tet.
Were it not for the rain, the roof wouldnt have flown away.
English allows the speaker to put the main and subordinate clauses in different conditions. So does
Hungarian.
Ha nem beszltl volna vissza, most nem lenne gipszben az llad.
Hadnt you talked back, your chin wouldnt be put in plaster.

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CAUSATION
The Hungarian term for causation is: mveltets. This word is a causation in itself! Watch this:
mvel
to do

+ -tet
+ -s
= mveltets
+ to cause + -ation = causation

Hungarian verbs are made causative with the suffixes:


do not require any link vowel.

-at, -et, -tat, -tet . These suffixes

English expresses causation with these verbs: to make, to cause, to get, to have sg done.
Now the question arises: Is there a difference between -at, -et and -tat, -tet? Sure there is!

GROUP 1
Generally speaking, all Hungarian verbs
Verbs ending in two consonants
The V-verb l
take the suffixes -at, -et in causation.
rakat
mondat
vrat
let
sejtet
lvet

get sy to put
make sy say
keep sy waiting
get sy to kill
suggest, foreshadow
to bomb (literally: have sg shot OR make sy shoot sg)

NOTE! The verbs lvet and sejtet are NOT CAUSATIVE verbs in English!

GROUP 2
The verbs vesz, hisz, visz
The ik verbs
take the suffixes -tat, -tet in causation.
eszik
iszik
alszik
nyugszik
fekszik
tnik
vesz
hisz
visz

etet
itat
altat
nyugtat
fektet
tntet
vetet
hitet
vitet

to feed
to give sg to drink
to put sy to sleep
to calm sy down
to get sy to bed; to lay down
to make a demonstration
to get sy to buy
make sy believe
to get sy to bring

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GROUP 3
The verb tesz
take the suffixes -et

and -tet in causation!

It is because tesz has two different meanings: to put, to do.


If it means to put, it takes: -et

If it means to do, it takes: -tet

John odateteti dmmal a szket.


John tetteti, hogy beteg.

tetet = to get sy to put


tettet = to pretend
John gets Adam to put the chair over there.
John pretends to be ill.

GROUP 4

Two verbs not in need of causation in Hungarian:

elejt = to let sg fall


elenged = to let sy go
Examples:
Elejtettem a tollam.
Engedje el a tszokat!

I let my pen fall.


Let the hostages go!

GROUP 5

rvesz = to persuade
knyszert = to force

A fi rvette a lnyt egy cskra.


The boy persuaded the girl to kiss him.
Emiatt a lny arra knyszertette a fi arct, hogy az lkbe essen.
That made the girl force the boys face to fall in her fist.
These sentences show two Hungarian verbs in causation, but English can have three in
the case of that made. The expression that made is translated as:
emiatt = because of this
The words emiatt, amiatt, miatt can also be translated in English as: to cause sy to.
However, it is not always a good solution.
His anger caused him to strangle the woman.

Dhben megfojtotta a nt.

The literal Hungarian translation is: In his anger he strangled the woman.

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135

GROUP 6
Verbs that definitely CANNOT SUFFER CAUSATION :

the substantive verbs: van, lesz


these two verbs expressing motion: jn, megy
V-verbs: n, sz, r (except l!)

IMPORTANT! Ive mentioned before that the verb r is an almost extinct verb because sr
is used instead. That statement is still as true as it can be. However, when it comes to
causation, r is used in this form: rkat meaning to make sy cry.
Its important since sr also has a causative form: sirat = to bewail, to mourn for sy.
Examples:
A szerelmes trtnetek megrkatjk a nket.
Love stories make women cry.
Az anya siratja a fit.
The mother is mourning for his son.
Of course, causative verbs can be conjugated in indefinite and/or definite conjugation
depending on what the verb means. They can be put in past tense, condtional mood,
imperative mood, as well.
When in imperative mood, the final t of the suffixes -at, -et, -tat, -tet becomes double ss !

sirassa, etesse, lvesse, tetesse / tettesse, altassa


The person you get to do something is in instrumental case in Hungarian.
Megcsinltatom vele a kocsit.
Idehozatja velk a bort.

Ill get him to repair the car.


He has the wine brought by them over here.

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PASSIVE VOICE
This is somewhat an easy topic since Hungarian sent passive voice in exile decades ago. And even
if it still existed, it should be expressed in a different way, with suffixes specialized in that area.
How are passive sentences expressed in Hungarian then? The answer is:

WITH ACTIVE SENTENCES!


That means that the English passive voice is expressed with:
THE

3RD PP FORM OF THE VERB IN DEFINITE OR INDEFINITE CONJUGATION IN HUNGARIAN

Take a look at the examples, variations on one sentence:


Abbrevations:

PS
PSC
PP
PPC
PTS
PTSC
PTP
PTPC
FS
FSC
FP
FPC

PS
PP
PTS
PTP
FS
FP
C

Present Simple
Present Perfect
Past Simple
Past Perfect
Future Simple
Future Perfect
Continous

The house is built.


The house is being built.
The house has been built.
The house has been being built.
The house was built.
The house was being built.
The house had been built.
The house had been being built.
The house will be built.
The house will be being built.
The house will have been built.
The house will have been being built.

past !!!
ppen+present
past
ppen+present
past
ppen+past
past
ppen+past
future
ppen+future
future
ppen+future

So the literal translation of the Hungarian sentences is:

A hzat megptettk. (!!!)


A hzat ppen ptik.
A hzat megptettk. (!!!)
A hzat ppen ptik.
A hzat megptettk.
A hzat ppen ptettk.
A hzat megptettk.
A hzat ppen ptettk.
A hzat meg fogjk pteni.
A hzat ppen pteni fogjk.
A hzat meg fogjk pteni.
A hzat ppen pteni fogjk.

They built the house.


They are building the house.
They built the house.
They are building the house.
and so on

English doesnt use some of the tenses above, but I wanted to give you a complete list to
understand how all these are translated in Hungarian.
Easy to see that Hungarian works with its one present, past and future tense. These
tenses can be made continous with the adverb of time ppen meaning at the moment / right
now. However, ppen is not always needed to express that.
Whats interesting for you is Present Simple and Present Perfect. Thats why I put an exclamation
mark at the end of those sentences. Lets see some more examples:

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137

1.
2.
3.
4.

Az ebdet megfztk.
Az ebd ksz.
A szmlt kifizettk.
A szmlt kifizetik.

The lunch has been cooked.


The lunch is done/ready.
The bill has been paid.
The bill is being paid / will be paid.

1. The verb megfz is in the past tense because according to Hungarian point of view the
lunch had to be done before we can say it has been cooked.
2. The adjective ksz creates a predicative adjective, so the substantive verb van is not
really there, but it is present tense.
3. The same story like the first sentence. The bill had to be paid in the past. And because
Hungarian has no tense for expressing an act between present and past, past is used.
4. The 3rd PP verb kifizetik gives the impression that the bill will be paid in the future. It can
also refer to a present action, though. Take a look at this:
Ltom, hogy a hlgyek kifizetik a szmlt.
I see that the bill is (being) paid by the ladies.
I know it seems like a big hotchpotch with the Hungarian passive voice, and youll need some
getting to used to it, but its still not as difficult as choosing one out of the fourteen tenses in
English. (even if you dont use some of them )
More examples:

HUNGARIAN ACTIVE SENTENCE

ENGLISH ACTIVE SENTENCE

ENGLISH PASSIVE SENTENCE

A kuka mell dobjk a


szemetet.

People throw rubbish beside


the litter bin.

Rubbish is thrown beside the


litter bin.

A kisemberekkel mindig
kitolnak.

They always take it out of


the common men.

Common men are always


taken out of.

A tiszteletes r egy hten


egyszer beszdet intzett a
kzssghez.

The Reverend addressed the


community once a week.

The community was


addressed by the Reverend
once a week.

A hzit meg kell csinlni.

One has to do his/her


homeworks.

Homeworks have to be done.

A trvnyt tisztelni kell.

You must respect the law.

The law must be respected.

A rendrk megtiltottk a
tntetst.

The police forbad the


manifestation.

The manifestation was


forbidden by the police.

Valaki elterjesztette az
rettsgi krdseit.

Someone has spred the


queries of the final exam.

The queries of the final exam


have been spred.

Jval azeltt feljelentettk a


dikokat tlegel tanrt, hogy
hallottam rla.

They had denounced the


teacher beating students long
before I heard of it.

The teacher beating students


had been denounced long
before I heard of it.

Minden nap rendeltem egy


veg bort.

I ordered a bottle of wine


every day.

A bottle of wine was ordered


by me every day.

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PASSIVE QUESTION
Since theres no passive voice in Hungarian, theres no passive question, either. You simply form
such questions with active sentences. For these examples below in the table, the English question
words can be Whoby? By whom? Whatby?

HUNGARIAN ACTIVE SENTENCE ENGLISH ACTIVE SENTENCE

ENGLISH PASSIVE SENTENCE

Ki fzte meg az ebdet?

Who cooked the lunch?

Who was the lunch cooked by?

Mi lte meg a frfit?

What killed the man?

What was the man killed by?

Ki ette meg a levesemet?

Who ate my soup?

Who was my soup eaten by?

by = ltal
Actually, there is a possibility to form somewhat passive statements when it comes to sentences
like:
The solution offered by them is not achievable.
Az ltaluk felknlt megolds nem megvalsthat.
The equivalent for by is ltal and you attach the possessive endings to it depending on who
offered the solution:
ltalam
ltalad
ltala
ltalunk
ltalatok
ltaluk

by me
by you
by him/her/it
by us
by you
by them

OR with a proper name:


A Pter ltal elmondott trtnet igaz.
The story told by Peter is true.
If there are more people involved ltal stays singular (Hungarian plural concept!):
A Pter s Jnos ltal elmondott trtnet igaz.
The story told by Peter and John is true.

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REPORTED SPEECH
Reported speech means:

You report something you heard from someone in a story-telling way. Direct
speech requires the speaker to quote exactly what he/she heard.

Examples in Hungarian are:


Direct speech:

Tina Turner said, We dont need another hero.


Tina Turner azt mondta, Nincs szksgnk tbb hsre.

Reported speech:

Tina turner said we didnt need another hero.


Tina turner azt mondta, hogy nincs szksgnk tbb hsre.

While the English sentence changed its tense (from dont need to didnt need), the Hungarian
tense stayed the same. English calls this non-existing phenomenon in Hungarian:
SEQUENCE OF TENSES

Sequence of tenses is one element of reported speech. However, as Hungarian only has one past
tense, theres nothing with which to bring the subordinate clause on one level with the main
clause. In one word: Hungarian does not concord tenses! Watch these for instance:
Azt mondja, hogy knyvet olvas.
He says he is reading the book.
He said he was reading the book. Azt mondta, hogy knyvet olvasott.
Basically, sequence of tenses means that if the verb of the main clause is past tense, the
verb of the subordinate clause also has to be past tense. But as Hungarian has one past
tense, it cant be understood as present like in the second English sentence said was reading.
Other elements of reported speech are: changing adverbs of place, adverbs of time and
pronouns. And that requirement is also present in the Hungarian language!
now
today
tomorrow
the day after tomorrow
yesterday
the day before yesterday
two weeks ago
last year
next year
recently
soon
this, these
here

most
ma
holnap
holnaputn
tegnap
tegnap eltt
kt hete
mlt vben
jvre
nemrgen
nemsokra
ez, ezek
itt

then, at that time


that day
the next day
in two days
the day before
two days ago
two weeks before
in the previous year
in the following year
shortly before
soon after
that, those
there

akkor
aznap
a kvetkez nap
kt nap mlva
az elz nap
kt nappal ezeltt
kt httel azeltt
az elz vben
a kvetkez vben
rviddel azeltt
nemsokra
az, azok
ott

I know it seems difficult, but if youre reading these pages, then youve achieved something!

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140

More examples:
Direct:

Hagyd abba, kisfiam, mert fenken


billentelek tged. -mondta az
idegsszeroppansban szenved anya.

Stop it, son, or Ill give you a kick in


the behind, the mother suffering from
nervous breakdown said.

Reported: Azt mondta az idegsszeroppansban


szenved anya a kisfinak, hogy hagyja
abba, mert fenken billenti t.

The mother suffering from nervous


breakdown told his son to stop it / that
he should stop it or she would give
him a kick in the behind.

Direct:

Take my hand!, Jzsi said to Anna.

Fogd meg a kezem! mondta Jzsi


Annnak.
Reported: Jzsi azt mondta Annnak, hogy fogja meg
a kezt.
Ne lgy hlye! mondtam a bartomnak
Direct:
Reported: Azt mondtam a bartomnak, hogy ne
legyen hlye.

Jzsi told Anna to take his hand.


Dont be stupid!, I said to my friend.
I told my friend not to be stupid.

REPORTED QUESTION
Note that English likes direct word order, but Hungarian prefers inversion in this case:

,Jzsi asked -krdezte Jzsi


Furthermore, Hungarian uses a dash, but English uses a comma!
Tnyleg beteg? krdezte Jzsi.
Jzsi azt krdezte, hogy tnyleg beteg-e.

Is he really ill?, Jzsi asked.


Jzsi asked if he was really ill.

Vettl-e szjatejet, dn? kvncsiskodott a


hzsrtos felesg.
A hzsrtos felesg arrl kvncsiskodott, hogy
vette-e dn szjatejet.

Did you buy some soya milk, dn?, his


grumbling wife wondered.
His grumbling wife wondered if dn had
bought some soya milk.

Lttl-e mr falon pkot? krdezte a pilta a


tgra nylt szem fitl.
A pilta azt krdezte a tgra nylt szem fitl,
hogy ltott-e mr falon pkot.

Have you ever seen a spider on wall?, the


pilot asked the wide-eyed boy.
The pilot asked the wide-eyed boy if / whether
he had ever seen a spider on wall.

Its not rare that the subordinate clause is introducted by if, whether whose Hungarian
equivalent are: -e, vajon.
He asked me if I would go to the restaurant.
He asked me whether I would go to the
restaurant.
He asked me whether to go to the restaurant.

Azt krdezte, hogy elmennk-e az tterembe.


Azt krdezte, hogy vajon elmennk-e az
tterembe.
Azt krdezte, hogy elmegyek-e az tterembe.

The Hungarian e is attached to the verb with a hyphen: elmennk-e

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PHRASAL VERBS
English phrasal verbs are verbs like these: go out, get up, look forward to, etc.

Hungarian also has phrasal verbs called


could be translated as verbal prefix.

igekts igk . The first word igekt

Lets see the examples above.


go out
get up
look forward to

kimegy
felkel
alig vr

The third one is not a phrasal verb in Hungarian, but the other two are. Remember
that out, up follows the verb in English, but verbal prefixes precede the verb in
Hungarian and theyre even written together!
Of course, many times, English phrasal verbs cannot be translated literally. A typical example for
that:
I hang up the phone. Leteszem a telefont.
English says hang up because phones must have been hung up on the wall long ago. If youre
using a telephone booth, you still have to hang up the phone. However, Hungarian simply says:
I put down the phone: put down = letesz

THE PREFIX IN A PHRASAL VERB CAN BE AN ADVERB OF PLACE, ADVERB OF MANNER.


There are plenty of Hungarian verbal prefixes. Lets see them in details.
Here they are:

VERBAL PREFIXES

abbaNo English equivalent for it. It is used with certain verbs.


abbahagy
abbamarad

to stop
to stop, to break off

Hagyd abba!
Stop it!
A tzels abbamaradt. The fire has ceased.

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142

agyonIt comes from the noun agy (brain). It expresses an activity which has reached a critical stage,
or is exaggerated. Sometimes it can be translated as: to death.
agyonl
agyondolgozza magt
agyonvg

to shoot sy to death
to overwork oneself
to strike dead

The soldier shot the prisoner to death.


A katona agyonltte a foglyot.
Az orvos azt mondta, agyondolgozom magam. The doctor said Ive been overworking.
A szerelt agyonvgta az ram.
The technicians got an electric shock.

alEquivalent: underalr
altmaszt
alaknz

to sign
to support
to undermine

Az elnk holnap alrja a dokumentumot. The president will sign the document tomorrow.
A bizonytk altmasztja a gyanmat.
The evidence affirms my suspicion.
Csapatok alaknztk a terletet.
Troops have undermined the area.

tEquivalent: through
tmegy
tvszel
tkarol

to cross, to pass
to go through, to get over
to embrace

tmegy a hdon.
tmegy a vizsgn.
tvszelik a telet.
tkarolja a bartjt.

He crosses the bridge.


He passes the exam.
They go through the winter.
She embraces/hugs her boyfriend.

beEquivalent: in, inside


bemegy vhova
belt vmt
behoz vmt
berobban

to enter
to understand, to admit
to make up
to blow in; to implode; to be a big hit

Bemegy a hzba.
Beltom, tvedtem.
Behozta a lemaradst.
Az j hip-hop szm berobbant a kztudatba.

She enters the house.


I admit/Now I see I was wrong.
He made up arrears.
The new hip-hop song was a big hit.

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143

beleEquivalent: in, inside


beleun vmbe
beleszl vmbe
belemegy vmbe
belejn vmbe

to get tired of sg
to intervene in sg
to be in, to agree with sg
to become better and better, to get into sg

Lassan beleunok az rsba.


Mindenbe beleszl.
Belemsz a vlsba?
Kezdesz belejnni!

Im getting tired of writing.


He puts in his oars, no matter what.
Do you agree with getting divorced?
Youre getting into it.

egybeEquivalent: together. Literally: in one.


egyber
egybeesik vmvel

to write together/as one word


to coincide with sg

The word rvidnadrg is written as one word.


A rvidnadrgot egyberjuk.
A nvnapom egybeesik a szlinapommal. My name-day coincides with my birth-day.

elEquivalent: away, off


elr vmt
eljr vhova
elsrja magt
elfut
elmond vmt
elront vmt
elalszik
eltr vmtl

to write sg wrong
to frequent
to burst out crying
to run away
to tell (about) sg
to mess sg up
to fall asleep
to differ from sg

Elrtk a cmet.
Eljr a diszkba.
Hirtelen elsrta magt.
Ijedtemben elfutottam.
Elmondjuk, amit hallottunk.
Elrontotttok a tesztet.
jfltjt alszok el.
Ez a knyv eltr az eredetitl.

Theres a typo in the title.


He often goes to the discotheque.
All of a sudden she burst out crying.
I was so scared I ran away.
Well tell you what we heard.
You guys blew the test.
I fall asleep towards midnight.
This book is different from the original.

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144

ellenEquivalent: counter-, anti-, against


ellenll vmnek
ellenriz vmt

to resist
to control

Ellenll a ksrtsnek. He resists temptation.


Ellenrizd a fket!
Check the brake please.

elEquivalent: foreelad
eljn
elvesz

to play, to perform
to come out
to produce

Eladjk a Hamlet-et.
They play Hamlet.
Eljnnek a bokorbl.
They come out the bush.
Elvesz egy tollat a zsebbl. He produces a pen from his pocket.

elreEquivalent: fore-, in advance


elrelt
elre megmond
elrebocst

to foresee
to foretell
to mention in advance

He foresaw his own death.


Elreltta a hallt.
Elre megmondtam, hogy ez lesz. I told you this was going to happen.
Szeretnm elrebocstani, hogy Id like to mention in advance that

fel-, flEquivalent: up
felmegy
felkilt
felad

to go up, to climb
to shout out
to give up sg

Felmegynk a hegyre.
Felkiltott: Haj a lthatron!
Soha ne add fel!
Felkopik az lla.

Were going up to the mountain.


He shouted out loud Ship on the horizon!
Never give up!
Hell perish with hunger.

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145

flbeEquivalent: in two, inter-. Literally: in half.


flbehagy
flbeszakt

to stop doing sg (but its not finished yet)


to interrupt

Flbehagyta a munkt.
She broke off her work.
A tanrt flbeszaktotta a cseng. The teacher was interrupted by the bell.

flreEquivalent: aside
flrell
flrert

to stand clear, to step aside


to misunderstand

Flrell az ajtbl. He steps aside from the door.


Ne rts flre!
Dont get me wrong.

fell-, fllEquivalent: superfellml


fellbrl

to surpass
to supervise; to overrule

Minden vrakozst fellml. Its beyond expectations.


A br fellbrlta a dntst. The judge overruled the decision.

fenn-, fnnEquivalent: up
fennmarad
fennll

to survive
to stand, to exist

A neve rkre fennmarad. His name will be known forever.


Amita a cgnk fennll Since our firm exists

htraEquivalent: backwards, overhtraesik

to fall back

A kisfi htraesett jtk kzben. The little boy fell backwards while playing.

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146

hazaEquivalent: home
hazamegy

to go home

Most hazamegyek. Im going home now.


hazafel menet
on ones way home

helyreEquivalent: to its place, right


helyretesz

to put sg right; to haul sy over the coal

Az anyuka helyretette a lnyt. The mother reprehended her daughter.

hozzEquivalent: to him/her/it
hozzmegy vkhez
hozzkezd vmhez

to marry him/her
to start doing sg

Petra hozzment dnhz.


Petra married dn.
Holnap hozzkezdenek az ptkezshez. Construction begins tomorrow.

ide-, odaEquivalent: here, there


ideszl
odaszalad

to tell, to call
to run up to

Ha jssz, szlj ide!


If you come, call me.
A gyerek odaszaladt az apukjhoz. The child ran up to his father.

keresztlEquivalent: through, across. It can be used like t- except with some verbs.
keresztlmegy

to go through

Sok mindenen keresztlment. Shes been through a lot.

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kettEquivalent: in two, apart


ketttrik

to break in two

Ketttrt a lemez. The disk has broken in two.

kiEquivalent: out
kifakad
kifest

to fulminate
to paint

Ezekre a szavakra kifakadtam. On hearing these words I foamed with rage.


Kifestitek a szobt?
Will you paint the room?

krlEquivalent: around
krlvesz
krlr

to surround
to paraphrase, to circumscribe

Iditkkal vagyok krlvve.


Im surrounded by idiots.
Megprblom krlrni, milyen volt. Im trying to describe what it felt like.

kzbeEquivalent: interkzbevg

to interrupt

Ekkor a n kzbevgott. And then the woman interposed a remark.

kzreEquivalent: kzremkdik

to contribute, to participate

A msik csapat is kzremkdik a filmben. The other team will participate in the movie, too.

klnEquivalent: apart
klnvlik

to get divorced

A hzaspr klnvlik. The married couple will get divorced.


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leEquivalent: down
lemond
lefekszik

to give up; to resign


to go to bed

Az elnk lemondott. The president has resigned from his office.


Lefekszek aludni.
Im going to bed.

mellEquivalent: mis-; by
mellfog
mellll

to make a blunder
to stand by sy

Jl mellfogtam.
That was a huge blunder for me.
Melld llok, ne aggdj! Ill stand by you. Dont worry!

nekiEquivalent: to him/her/it OR not to be translated


nekilt vmnek

to get down to

Nekilt a munknak. Hell get down to work.

sszeEquivalent: together
sszejn
sszecsinlja magt

to be successful
to crap ones pants

Vgl is sszejtt!
We made it after all!
Majd sszecsinlta magt ijedtben! He almost crapped his pants with fear.

rEquivalent: onto him/her/it


rtall vkre
rhibz vmre
rfog vmt vkre

to find sy
to make a lucky hit
to blame sy for sg

A mentcsapat tovbbi t emberrel tallt r. The rescue team have found other five people.
Rhibztl!
That was a lucky hit of yours!
Mindent rm fogsz.
You blame me for everything.

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rajtaEquivalent: on him/her/it
rajtakap

to catch sy in fault

Rajtakaptk a lopson. Hes been caught on stealing.

szt-, szjjel-

See: kett-

szembeEquivalent: against
szembeszll vkvel
szembenz vmvel

to fight sy
to face sg

Szembeszllok vele.
Ill fight him.
Nzznk szembe a tnyekkel! Lets face the facts.

szerteEquivalent: everywhere, apart


szertegazik

to fork, to diversify

A vlemnyek szertegaznak. Opinions are all different.

teleEquivalent: full
teleeszi magt
telebeszli vknek a fejt

to stuff oneself
to talk sys head off

Teleettk magukat.
Theyve stuffed themselves.
Telebeszled a fejem minden hlyesggel. Youre talking my head off with nonsense.

tovbbEquivalent: on. This word itself can also mean to continue.


tovbbcsinl
tovbbolvas

to go on doing sg
to continue reading

Tovbbcsinlom, akkor is, ha nem tetszik. Ill keep doing it even if you dont like it.
Tovbbolvassa a knyvet.
He continues reading the book.

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tnkreEquivalent: No equivalent. I could describe it as: until something is in ruins.


tnkremegy
tnkretesz

to go awry; to go bankrupt
to bring sg to ruin

Tnkrement a mosgp. The washing machine has had it.


Tnkretted az estmet. You messed up this evening for me.

tlEquivalent: overtlrad
tlbecsl

to overflow
to overestimate

Tlradnak az rmtl.
They bubble over with joy.
Tlbecsltem. Mgsem olyan j gitros. I overestimated him. Hes not that good
at playing the guitar after all.

jjEquivalent: re-; to become new


jjpt
jjled

to rebuild
to resuscitate

jjptem a hzam.
Ill rebuild my house.
A termszet tavasszal jjled. Nature resuscitates in spring.

jra
Equivalent: re-, again
jra csinl

to do it again

Csinld jra! Do it again!


NOTE! THIS PREFIX IS ALWAYS WRITTEN SEPARATELY FROM THE VERB!

utnaEquivalent: after
utnanz

to see about, to look after

Megteszed, hogy utnanzel? Will you do me a favour and see about it?

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vgbeEquivalent: to the end


vgbemegy

to take place

Elkpeszt, mi megy itt vgbe! Unbelievable what kind of things are going on here.

vghezEquivalent: to the end; to do sg so that its surely done


vghezvisz

to bring to effect

Az a hegymsz nagy tettet vitt vghez. That mountainer has made quite an achievement.

vgigEquivalent: until the end


vgigcsinl

to go through with sg, to do sg until its finished

Vgigcsinlom a tanfolyamot.
Im going through with the course.
Vgigfut a htamon a hideg tle. It gives me the creeps.

visszaEquivalent: back
visszamegy

to go back

Visszamegyek Budapestre. Im going back to Budapest.


Visszahz a szvem.
Im homesick.
and some notes
Be careful with certain verbs!
betz = to spell

NOT EQUAL TO

betz = to stick in

kilt = to shout

NOT EQUAL TO

killt = he stood up (for)

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RULES OF WRITING VERBAL PREFIXES


a. If the verbal prefix precedes the verb, it is written together with the verb: megnz,
odafut, sztszed
b. If the verbal prefix follows the verb, it is written separately from the verb. Reason for
this can be an imperative sense: Mondd meg! Nzzen oda! Keljenek fel!...
c. The verbal prefix is written separately if a third word is wedged between the
verbal prefix and its verb: El ne ruld! Meg is teszem. Fel szabad menni
In this case you should deal with verbs like: megtud, leszokik, megvan. Watch their use!
1a. Megtudta, hogy tment a vizsgn.
1b. Meg tudta rni a tesztet.

He learned he passed the exam.


He could write the test.

2a. Leszokott a dohnyzsrl.


2b. Le szokott menni a parkba.

He gave up smoking.
Usually he goes down the park.

3a. Megvan a megolds!


3b. Meg van ijedve.

Ive got the solution!


Hes frightened.

1a. megtud = to get to know, to learn


1b. meg tud rni = auxiliary verb can
2a. leszokik = to give up
2b. le szokott menni = auxiliary verb equivalent to usually
3a. megvan = to have it; Ive got it!
3b. meg van ijedve = adverbial construction derived from megijed to get scared
d. If a verbal prefix is repeated, it is written with a hyphen and together with the
verb: vissza-visszanz, meg-megll
e. If two verbal prefixes have an opposite meaning, theyre written with a hyphen
and separately from the verb they refer to: le-fel jrkl, ki-be szalad, oda-vissza utazik
I havent mentioned another verbal prefix in detail and I did that on purpose. It requires more
explanation. That verbal prefix is: meg.

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MEG
The verbal prefix meg cannot be really translated. It expresses the completeness of an
action. Basically we could say that Hungarian verbs without any prefix have a continous
aspect. Watch these examples:

PRESENT

PAST

Nztem a filmet.
Verb with no prefix Nzem a filmet.
Im watching the film. I was watching the film.
Verb with meg-

Megnzem a filmet.
Ill watch the film.

Megnztem a filmet.
I watched the film.

See the difference? Hungarian people dont need four past and present tenses to express nuances
of an action. All we need is the verbal prefix meg-. Besides, two other prefixes can also have this
function to express completeness: el-, le-. Other examples:
Tudtam a vlaszt.
Megtudtam a lny nevt.

I knew the answer.


I found out the girls name.

rtem, mit akarsz mondani.


Megrtem, hogy mit rzel.

I see what you mean.


I understand/know exactly what you feel.

Minden reggel szalonnt eszek.


I eat bacon every morning.
Minden reggel megeszem a szalonnt. I eat up the bacon every morning.
A vonat tkor megy.
A vonat tkor elmegy.

The train leaves at five.


The train will leave at five.

A gyerekek futnak a jtsztren.


A gyerekek elfutnak az idegen ell.

The children are running on the play ground.


The children run away from the stranger.

A koncert mg javban zajlik.


A koncert este tzre lezajlik.

The concert is still in progress.


The concert will be over by ten p.m.

ANSWERING WITH VERBAL PREFIXES


If youre asked a question having a verb with a prefix, you have the following possibilities you can
choose from. Of course, you can simply answer yes or no, too: -Megcsinltad a leckt? Igen./Nem.
-Megcsinltad a leckt?
-Igen, megcsinltam.

-Have you done your homework?


-Yes, I have done it.

-Megcsinltad a leckt?
-Igen, meg.

-Have you done your homework?


- Yes, I have.

-Megcsinltad a leckt?
-Meg.

-Have you done your homework?


-Yes.

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VERBS REQUIRING WHAT?


segt vknek vmiben
tallkozik vkvel
nz vkre
hozzmegy vkhez
megbocst vknek vmt
vitatkozik vmn
fl vktl, vmtl
megkszn vknek vmt
sszeveszik vkvel
egyetrt vkvel
elboldogul vmvel
elutazik vhonnan vhova
aggdik vm miatt
elkezd vmt
megy vmt csinlni
jn vmt csinlni
tanul vmt
megtanul vmt
gondol vkre, vmre
megy vhova
rme telik vmben
kr vmt vktl
krdez vktl vmt
fordul vkhez vmrt/vmvel
trtnik vm vkvel
dolga van
kr vkt vmre
tancsol/javasol vknek vmt
prbl vmt tenni
megksrel vmt tenni
mond vmt vkrl
ktelkedik vmben
megvan vm nlkl
tanul vmbl
megsrtdik vmn
elgedett vmvel
rl vmnek
kpes vmre
kptelen vmre
vk vlemnyn van
meggyz vkt vmrl
olvas vmrl
gondolkozik vmn

to help sy do sg
to meet sy, to run across with sy
to look at sy
to marry sy
to forgive sy sg
to discuss sg
to fear sy/sg, to be afraid of sy/sg
to thank sy for sg
to have a quarrel with sy
to agree with sy
to cope with sg
to leave a place for another
to worry about sg
to start doing sg
to go doing sg
to come to do sg
to study sg
to learn sg
to think of sy, sg
to go swhere
to take pleasure in sg
to ask sy for sg
to ask sy sg
to apply to sy for sg
sg happen to sy
to have to do
to ask sy to do sg
to suggest sy doing sg
to try sg/to do sg
to attempt to do sg
to say sg about sy
to doubt sg
to do without sg
to learn from sg
to be offended at sg
to be satisfied with sg
to be happy with sg, to take delight in sg
to be capable of sg
to be incapable of sg
to agree with sy
to persuade sy to do sg
to read about sg
to think about sg

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EXPRESSIONS WITH ELEMENTARY VERBS


Abbreviations:
vk = valaki
vm = valami

sy/sb = somebody
sg = something

MEGY
Basic meaning: to go
kenyrrt megy
tnkremegy
a szimata utn megy
stlni megy
teljes gzzel megy
ngykzlb megy
fstbe megy
kocsival, hajval, replvel, vonattal megy
mennybe megy
orvosnak/pincrnek megy
meztlb megy
tlmegy a jzls hatrn
elmegy

to go buy some bread


to go awry
to have a nose for sg
to go for a walk
to give full throttle
to go on his hands and knees
to end up in smoke
to go by car, by sea, by air, by train
to go to heaven
to make a doctor/to take a job as a waiter
to go barefoot
to overstep the line of good taste
to leave; to pass away

AD
Basic meaning: to give
vknek az rtsre ad
szabad kezet ad vknek
enni ad vknek
beleegyezst adja vmbe
brbe ad
ajndkba ad
beadja a gygyszert vknek
szavt adja
olcsn ad el
igazat ad vknek
tancsot ad
megadja magt
ivsra adja a fejt
bnak adja a fejt
tanrnak adja ki magt

to give sy to understand
to give sy a free hand
to give sy sg to eat
to yield consent to sg
to rent
to make a gift of sg
to give sy ones medicine
to give ones word
to sell sg cheap
to give sy right
to give sy a piece of advice
to surrender
to take to drink
to mope
to dub oneself a teacher

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MOND
Basic meaning: to say, to tell
magban mondja
nemet/igent mond
felmondja a leckt
megmondja a magt
rosszat mond vkrl
mondja magt vmnek
szakcsnak mondja magt
nagyokat mond
kerek-perec megmondja vknek
Marha vagy, s mg keveset mondtam!
Nem meg mondtam?
Hogy mondjk magyarul, hogy gyvd?

to talk to oneself
to say no/yes
to repeat the lesson
to give sy a piece of ones mind
to speak ill of sy
to claim to be sy
to claim to be a cook
to talk large
to be round with sy
Youre an idiot, to put it mildly!
There you are! I told you so!
How do you say lawyer in Hungarian?

CSINL
Basic meaning: to do, to make
gy csinl, mintha
reggelit csinl
nagy gyet csinl vmbl
kicsinl vkt
sszecsinlja magt ijedtben
visszacsinl vmt

to pretend to do sg
to make breakfast
to make too much of sg
to finish sy off
to crap oneself with fear
to undo sg

HAGY
Basic meaning: to let, to leave
maga mgtt hagy vmt
futni hagy vkt
elhagyja az orszgot
a tollat az iskolban hagyja
fakpnl hagy
sok kvnnivalt hagy maga utn
helyben hagy vkt
felhagy vmvel
rksget hagy vkre
Hagyj bkn!
hagyja elmenni a fle mellett

to leave sg behind
to uncoop
to leave the country
to leave the pen in school
to leave sy high and dry
to leave much to be desired
to give sy what for
give up doing sg
to bequeath
Leave me alone!
to pass unmarked

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TESZ
Basic meaning: to do; to put. Synonym for tesz meaning to put is RAK.
prbra tesz
gazdagg tesz
jt/rosszat tesz vkvel
gy tesz, mintha
eleget tesz kvetelsnek
j/rossz benyomst tesz
szert tesz vmre
leteszi a fegyvert
beteszi a pnzt a bankba
kiteszi a szrt vknek
megtesz vmt vkrt
Ez betett neki!
a trgyalst tteszi msnapra
rtesz egy lapttal

to put sy to the test


to make sy rich
to do well/badly by sy
to pretend to do sg
to meet the requirements
to convey a good/bad impression
to get hold of sg
to lay down the arms
to put ones money in a bank
to turn sy out of doors
to do sg for sy
That cooked his goose!
to adjourn a conference to the next day
to crank up, to aggravate sg

BESZL
Basic meaning: to talk, to speak
ssze-vissza beszl
Mintha a falnak beszlnk!
orrhangon beszl
mindenflrl beszl
hangosan, nyltan, halkan beszl
sokat beszl
magyarul/angolul beszl
-Te beszlsz angolul? -Igen, beszlek.
Egsz nap angolul beszl.
beszlnek egymssal

to gibber
Like Im talking to the wall!
to speak through ones nose
to talk about everything
to talk up, to speak boldly, to speak in a whisper
to talk away
to speak Hungarian/English
-Do you speak English? Yes, I do.
Hes talking in English all day.
to talk to each other

SZL
Basic meaning: to tell
rszl vkre
sszeszlalkozik vkvel
beszl vknek
Ha elutazol, szlj nekem!
leszl vmt
Na, mit szlsz hozz?
Most szlj hozz!
Ki szlt hozzd?

to put sy in his place


to come to loggerheads with sy
to quip
If you leave, tell me.
to disparage sg
What do you say to that?
Now say something to that!
Whos talking to you?

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HALAD
Basic meaning: to go, to pass
Hogy haladsz?
A haj dl fel halad.
Ez meghaladja a kpessgeimet.
Az aut a hz mellett haladt el.
A kocsik lassan thaladnak a hdon.
Ez mr halads!
Nem haladunk (elre).

How are you getting on (with you work)?


The ship is on course to south.
Its above me.
The car passed by the house.
The cars are crossing the bridge slowly.
Well, thats something!
Were making no progress.

JR
Basic meaning: to go, to walk
rosszul jr
Rosszul jr az rm.
Megjrja!
Jl megjrtam!
gyerekcipben jr
kijrja a gimnziumot
lejrja a lbt
tjr a bartjhoz.
rjr a rd
idejr.
A bartok sszejrnak a sarki kocsmban.
Lassan jrj, tovbb rsz!
Rgta jrnak.
jr-kel
Ez gy nem jrja!

to come off badly


My watch is wrong.
Itll do!
Ive had it!
to be in ones infancy
to graduate from high-scool
to run off ones leg
He often sees his friend.
to be under the harrow
He often comes here.
The friends meet in the pub on the corner.
More haste, less speed.
Theyve been going out for a while now.
to get around
Its not fair!

MARAD
Basic meaning: to stay, to remain
marad a kaptafnl
sokig kimarad
Az tel megmaradt.
Maradj ott!
elmarad a munkval
lemarad a tbbi versenyztl
megmarad
A h tavaszig megmarad.
Szvrohamom volt, de megmaradok.
ottmarad

to keep doing the same thing


to stay out late all night
Theres some food left.
Stay where you are!
to be behind with ones work
to fall behind the other contestants
to last; to stay alive
Snow lasts until spring.
Ive had a heart attack, but Ill survive.
to remain behind

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FOG
Basic meaning: to take
tzet fog
kifogja a halat
kifog vkn
kzen fog vkt
elfogja a betrt
Ez kifog rajtam!
a rendr lefogja a gyanustottat
megfog vmt
rfog vmt vkre
Mindig mindent rm fogsz!
az emberek sszefognak a szksgben

to catch fire
to land a fish
to trick sy, to outwit sy
to take sys hand
to catch the burglar
This beats me.
the cop keeps the suspect down
to grab sg
to blame sy for sg
Youre always putting the blame on me!
people stay together in the need

VESZ
Basic meaning: to take; to buy
autt, hzat vesz
veszi a kalapjt
felveszi a fizetst
beveszi a gygyszert
elvesz felesgl vkt
elveszi vknek a pnzt
tveszi az irnytst
rvesz vkt vmre
Rvette a frfit a csalsra.
visszaveszi a romlott hst.
j/rossz nven vesz vmt
szvesen vesz vmt

to buy a car, a house


to get ones hat
to get ones salary
to take ones medicine
to marry her
to take sys money
to assume control
to persuade sy to do sg
He persuaded the man to cheat.
to take the bad meat back
to welcome/to take sg amiss
to welcome sg

LL
Basic meaning: to stand
az ajtban ll
jl/rosszul ll
vk mellett ll
n melletted llok.
ll az alku?
A csapat azon ll vagy bukik, hogy
bell a garzsba
lell vkvel beszlgetni
felll
rll vmre
rll az gyre
odall
sszell vkvel
a banda ismt sszell
Megllj!
lljon meg a menet!

to stand at the door


to be well/badly off
to stick up for sy
I stand by you.
Is it a go?
The pivot of the team is
to park in the garage
to stop to talk to sy
to stand up
to bring oneself to do sg
to get down to business
to stand there
to set up with sy
the band comes together again
Hold on!
Wait a second!

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TART
Basic meaning: to hold, to keep
szben tart vmt
szmon tart vmt
rendet tart
fenntartja lltst
vgletekig kitart
megtartja a szavt
magnak megtart
Tartsd meg magadnak!
bolondnak tart vkt
tartja magt a megllapodshoz
feltart vkt

to keep sg on ones mind


to keep count of sg
to tidy up
to maintain ones point
to endure to the end
to keep ones word
to keep sg for oneself
Keep it to yourself!
to take sy for a fool
to keep to the agreement
to waste sys time

VAN
Basic meaning: to be
biztonsgban van
vknek a nyomban van
ktsgbe van esve
Azon a vlemnyen van, hogy
fmbl/fbl van
(nincs) magnl van
magn kvl van
Azon a ponton van, hogy
t ra van.
Pntek van.
Ha a helyedben lennk,
Kt ve/hnapja, hogy
Helyben vagyunk.
rszvttel van vk irnt
Van benne valami j is.
Kk szeme van.
farmerban van
benne van a keze a dologban
torkig van vmvel
mondanivalja van
sok pnze van
elege van vmbl/vkbl
Nagyon kivagyok.
Megvagyok.
jl/rosszul van

to be safe
to be on sys track
to be in dispair
to be of the opinion that
to be made of metal/wood
to be (un)conscious
to be beside oneself
to be about to do sg
Its five oclock.
Its Friday.
If I were you
Its two years/month since
Were there.
to feel for sy
Theres something good in it.
She has blue eyes.
to be wearing jeans
to have a hand in it
to have a surfeit of sg
to have something to say
to have a lot of money
to be fed up with sg/sy
Im exhausted.
Im fine.
to feel good/bad

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JN
Basic meaning: to come
vilgra jn
jl/kapra jn
eljn egy tlettel
rjn a megoldsra
bejn
visszajn

to be born
to come in handy
to come up with an idea
to find out the solution
sy makes it
to come back

GONDOL, GONDOLKODIK
Basic meaning: to think. The verb gondolkodik rather means the process, to be thinking.
gondol vkre/vmre
Rd gondolok.
jt/rosszat gondol vkrl
sajt fejvel gondolkodik
Mindjrt gondoltam!
gondolkodba ejt vkt
jobban meggondolva
Mit gondolsz, ki vagy te?

to think of sy/sg
I think of you.
to think good/ill of sy
to use ones head
I knew it!
to set sy thinking
on second thought
Who do you think you are?

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CONJUNCTIONS
The Hungarian term for conjunctions is: KTSZK .

S, MEG
Equivalent: and. The difference between s and meg is that meg expresses a little bit closer
connection to something.
n s te
me and you
Az alkohol meg a gygyszer nem a legjobb pros.
Alcohol and medinice dont harmonize.
A lny nevetett, s n visszanevettem.
A lny nevetett, n meg visszanevettem.
The girl was laughing and I laughed back.
A kutya meg a macska!
Come up!
A kutya meg a macska! is said to small children as reprehension. One can also say: A
kutyafjt! Teringettt!
The conjunction s can have an inverse meaning close to but. Look at this:
Ezt mondja, s kzben teljesen mst csinl.
Hes saying this and doing another thing.

PEDIG
Equivalent: and, but; yet. Its an interesting conjunction because it has three meanings. Take a
look at the examples:
Mrges lett rm, pedig n mr azeltt megmondtam, hogy nem segtek.
He got mad at me, yet, Id told him long before I wouldnt help him.
takart, te pedig bevsrolsz.
Shell tidy up and youll do the shopping.
Rosszul slt el, pedig nem akartak rosszat.
It went wrong, but they meant no harm.

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IS, SZINTN, PPEN GY, VALAMINT


Equivalent: is, szintn
ppen gy
valamint

=
=
=

also, too
just as
as well as

These conjunctions must follow what they refer to!


Azt is tudja, hogy hazudtl.
He also knows you lied.
n is lttam.
I saw it, too.
Csak hallottad vagy lttad is?
Did you hear it or you also saw it?
Mi is megynk?
Are we going, too?
k pp gy nem rtik, mint a tbbiek.
They dont get it just as the others dont.
A vizsga nyolckor kezddik, valamint ne felejtstek el, hogy
The exam begins at eight, as well as you shouldnt forget
The conjunction valamint has two functions: and, too. However, it is used in a more formal
context. Now I just give you a nerdy example.
n valamint Pter
Me and Peter, (too).

SE, SEM
Equivalent: either, neither, nor; even. These conjunctions must follow what they refer to!
No difference between se and sem. Choose which you want.
Azt sem tudja, hogy hazudtl.
He doesnt even know you lied.
n se lttam.
I didnt see it, either.
Mi se megynk?
Arent we going, either?
k sem rtik, ahogy a tbbiek se.
They dont get it, nor do the others.
-Nem aludtunk egsz este. n se!
-We didnt sleep all night. Nor did I! / Me either.

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MGIS, MGSE
Equivalent: even. Look how they have to be used.
Even I know the answer.
Mg n is tudom a vlaszt.
Even I dont know the answer.
Mg n sem tudom a vlaszt.
Ive kissed the other girl, too.
Mg a msik lnyt is megcskoltam.
I havent even kissed the other girl.
Mg a msik lnyt sem cskoltam meg.

VAGY, KLNBEN
Equivalent: or, otherwise. The conjunction vagy is not to be confused with the 2nd PS form
of the substantive verb vagy!
vagy n, vlassz!
Him or me. Choose!
Megnyesed a bokrot, vagy mosogatsz?
Are you going to trim the bush or do the dishes?
Gyertek ide, klnben baj lesz!
Come here otherwise there will be trouble!
Gyertek ide vagy baj lesz!
Come here or there will be trouble!

DE, AZONBAN, CSAK


Equivalent: but, however
Te nem ismered, de n igen.
You dont know him, but I do.
Megrtelek, azonban ennl tbb kell.
I see what you mean, however, we need more than that.
Egsz nap csak tvzik.
Hes doing nothing but watch tv all day long.

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MGIS, MGSE
Equivalent: still, yet, however. You can emphase mgis, mgse like this: de mgis/s mgis;
s mgse/de mgse.
Nem terveztem, mgis szrakozni megyek.
I didnt plan, still, Im going out.
I didnt plan, yet, Im going out.
Szeretem, de mgse fog megbocstani.
I love her, still, she wont forgive me.
Nemet mondott, mgis eljtt.
He said no, however, he came.

CSAK, CSUPN, KIZRLAG


Equivalent: just, only. These conjunctions precede what or who they refer to!
Csak azt tudom, hogy elment.
I only know shes gone.
All I know shes gone.
Kizrlag nem dohnyzknak!
For non-smokers only.
Csak azt akartam, hogy tudd.
I just wanted you to know.
Csak erre emlkszem.
Thats all I remember.
csak te s n
just you and me
The word csak is also used in this situation:
-Mirt nem mondod meg az igazat? Csak!
-Why dont you tell me the truth? Just because!
You also can use csupn, but it is rarely heard.
Csupn ez maradt nekem.
Thats all left for me.

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MERT
Equivalent: because
Beszltem vele, mert a hivatalban voltam.
I talked to her because I was in the office.
-Mirt nem vlaszolsz? -Mert nincs mit mondanom.
-Why dont you answer? Because I have nothing to say.

EZRT, EMIATT, GY, TEHT


Equivalent: therefore, so, thats why, like this, like that
Utllak, ezrt kilklek az ablakbl.
I hate you, therefore Ill push you out the window.
Gondolkodom, teht vagyok.
I think, therefore I am.
Meggondoltam magam, gy nem megyek.
Ive changed my mind, so Im not going.
Emiatt hallgatsz hrom napja?
Thats why you havent said a word for three days?

MIVEL
Equivalent: as, since, for
Nem piszklom, mivel nincs oda rte.
Im not annoying her, for, she dislikes it.
Mivel jobban vagytok, iskolba is mehettek.
As you guys feel better, you can go to school.
Nem gyanusthat, mivel nem tettem semmit.
He cant suspect me since I didnt do anything.

AKKOR, AZTN, MAJD


Equivalent: then
Felment az emeletre, aztn sszeesett.
Felment az emeletre, majd sszeesett.
He went upstairs, and then collapsed.
-Van pnzed? Nincs. Akkor krj apdtl!
-Do you have any money? No. Then ask your father for some.

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AMINT, MIALATT
Equivalent: as, while
Fegyvert tartott rm, mialatt kimentem a bankbl.
He was pointing a gun at me while I was leaving the bank.
Amint stltam, szrevettem egy szvrvnyt.
As I was walking, I saw a rainbow.
The conjunction amint also has the meaning: as soon as. Synonyms are MIHELYT, AHOGY .
Amint felkelek, lezuhanyozok.
As soon as I get up, Ill take a shower.
Ahogy az llomsra rtek, megrkezett a vonat.
As soon as they got to the station, the train had arrived.
Mihelyt odarek, felhvlak.
As soon as I get there, Ill call you.

AMG, MIALATT
Equivalent: while; as long as; until
Vrj, amg bejelentkezek!
Wait until I check in.
Amg te pepecselsz, elmegy a haj.
While youre fiddling about, the ship will leave.
Amg nem tmad rm, hidegen hagy.
As long as he doesnt attack me, I dont care about him.

RGTN, AZONNAL
Equivalent: immediately, right away, right now, now
Rgtn krhzba vittem a gyereket.
I took the child to hospital immediately.
Azonnal csinld meg!
Do it right now!
-Jssz? Azonnal.
-You coming? Right away.
-Majd megcsinlom a hzit. Most rgtn megcsinlod!
-Ill do the homework later. You do it now.

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AMIKOR
Equivalent: when
Meg fogsz lepdni, amikor bemsz a hzba.
Youll be surprised when you enter the house.

VALAHNYSZOR, AKRHNYSZOR
Equivalent: whenever, everytime
Valahnyszor egy mosoda mellett megyek el, rd gondolok.
Everytime I walk past a laundry, I think of you.
Akrhnyszor kitolhatsz velem, fel se veszem.
You can do me in the eye whenever you want. I dont give a damn.

KIVVE, HA; HA CSAK NEM


Equivalent: unless
Sehova nem megyek, ha csak nem kr bocsnatot.
Im not going anywhere unless she apologizes.
Nem veszem fel kivve, ha vrs.
I wont wear that suit unless its red.

MINTHA
Equivalent: as if, as though
gy nzel rm, mintha idita lennk.
Youre looking at me as if I was an idiot.

ELLENRE, MINDAZONLTAL, JLLEHET


Equivalent: nontheless, nevertheless, notwithstanding, despite, in spite of
Jllehet esik, kiviszem a szemetet.
Its raining, nonetheless, Ill take out the garbage.
Annak ellenre, hogy van munkd, nem nagyon rlsz.
Despite the fact that you have a job, youre not too happy.
rlk, mindazonltal nem ltatom magam.
Im glad, nevertheless, Im not kidding myself.

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HA; VAJON, -E
Equivalent: if, whether
Ha jssz, szlj!
If you come, tell me.
Kvncsi vagyok, eljn-e.
Im wondering if hes coming.
Vajon eljn?
Im wondering whether hes coming.

NEMCSAK, HANEMIS
Equivalent: not onlybut also
Nemcsak a vrosba megyek, hanem vidkre is.
Im not only going downtown, but also to the countryside.

BR, MBR, JLLEHET, NOHA


Equivalent: albeit, though, although
Br megeszem a borst, nem rajongok rte.
I eat peas, its not my favourite, though.
Jllehet megeszem a borst, nem rajongok rte.
I eat peas, although its not my favourite.
Noha megeszem a borst, nem rajongok rte.
Albeit I eat peas, its not my favourite.

ABBAN A PILLANATBAN
Equivalent: the moment
Hazarohantam, abban a pillanatban, hogy hallottam a rossz hrt.
I ran home the moment I heard the bad news.

AHELYETT, HOGY
Equivalent: instead of
Bulizni ment ahelyett, hogy fizikt tanulna.
He went to the party instead of learning physics.

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VALJBAN, IGAZBL
Equivalent: in fact
Valjban nem szeretem a sportot.
In fact, I dont like sports.
Igazbl itthon maradtak.
In fact, they stayed home.

FELTVE, HA
Equivalent: provided
Elmondom a titkomat feltve, ha te is.
Ill tell you my secret provided so will you.

ARRA AZ ESTRE, HA
Equivalent: in case
Vegyl tojst arra az esetre, ha rntottt akarsz stni.
Buy some eggs in case you want to make scrambled eggs.

(HA) ESETLEG
Equivalent: by any chance
Ha esetleg fel akarsz takartani, tudod, hol a porszv.
If, by any chance, you want to tidy up, you know where the vacuum-cleaner is.
Nem tudod esetleg, hol lakik a lny?
Do you know by any chance where the girl lives?

ANLKL, HOGY
Equivalent: without
Anlkl msz el, hogy egy sort is rnl?
You leave without dropping me a line?

MIELTT; AZELTT, HOGY


Equivalent: before
Mieltt szundtottam egyet, hrom napig folyamatosan dolgoztam.
Before having forty winks, Ive been working for three days without interruption.

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AZRT, HOGY
Equivalent: so that, in order to, so as to, to
Azrt ttte le a nt, hogy elvegye a trcjt.
He knocked the lady down so that he could take her wallet.
Azrt ttte le a nt, hogy elvegye a trcjt.
He knocked the lady down so as to take her wallet.
Azrt ttte le a nt, hogy elvegye a trcjt.
He knocked the lady down in order to take her wallet.
Azrt ttte le a nt, hogy elvegye a trcjt.
He knocked the lady down to take her wallet.

DOUBLE CONJUNCTIONS
VAGYVAGY
Equivalent: eitheror
Vagy azt csinlod, amit mondok, vagy hazamehetsz.
Either you do what Im telling you or you can go home.
Vagy igyl, vagy vezess: a kett egytt nem megy.
Drink or drive: the two things dont go along.

ISIS; AKRAKR; MINDMIND


Equivalent: bothand; whetheror; as well as
Megettem az ebdet is, meg a vacsort is.
I ate up both the lunch and the dinner.
Akr ez, akr az, nem rdekel, csak vlassz!
Whether this or that, I dont care, just choose.
Mind a beszd, mind az elads remek volt.
The speech as well as the spectacle were great.

SESE; SEMSEM
Equivalent: neithernor; eitheror
Se nem alszol, se nem eszel.
Youre not sleeping or eating.
Sem a regnyt nem olvastuk el, sem az jsgot.
We didnt read the novel or the newspaper.
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THE MORE THE MORE


The more you eat the fatter you get. Such sentences are formed in Hungarian like this:
MINLANNL

Minl tbb pnzed van, annl boldogabb vagy.


The more money you have, the happier you are.
Minl szebb, annl jobb.
The nicer the better.
Minl hosszabb, annl rosszabb.
The longer the worse.
Minl tbbet gondolok rd, annl jobban fj a fejem.
The more I think of you, the stronger headache I have.
HOGY

Equivalent: that; to
This conjunction needs a more detailed explanation because there are more to it than meets the
eye at first. Lets see an example for what I mean:
Azt javasolta, hogy kltzznk el.
She proposed that we move house.
Such sentences require an antecedent. The sentence above has one, too: Azt
Antecedents are to be found in main clauses and they refer to subordinate clauses. They
also appear in sentences with relative pronouns:
Arrl beszl, aki ott ll.
Hes talking about the person (whos) standing over there.
However, they dont have to be said all the time. Sometimes they are hidden in the sentence,
understood from the context. Example:
Ki tudta (azt), hogy bnz?
Who knew that he was a criminal?
NOTE! Not always does English use the conjunction that, either: Who knew he was a criminal?

HUNGARIAN ALWAYS USES THE CONJUNCTION HOGY!


You see that these antecedents are formed with the demonstrative pronoun az + the proper
suffixes/endings. The pronoun az can be made plural if needed:
Azokrl beszl, akik ott llnak.
Hes talking about those (who are) standing over there.

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More examples:
Azt mondod, hogy kirgtak?
Youre telling me youve been fired?
Azt hiszem, hogy mr jobban vagyok.
I think I feel better now.
Annak hiszlek, aminek akarlak.
I think of you whatever I want.
Annak viszi az lelmet, aki rszorul.
He brings food for people who need it.
Arrl beszljnk, amirt sszegyltnk.
Lets talk about the reason why we assembled.
Attl, hogy igazat mondasz, nem kedvellek jobban.
Just because you tell the truth, I dont like you more.
Akivel sszebartkozol, arra mindig szmthatsz.
You can always count on people you make friends with.
and so on
And here I should mention the purpose and reason clause.

AZRT, HOGY = (IN ORDER) TO, SO THAT


AZRT, MERT = BECAUSE
Azrt jttem, hogy elmondjak mindent.
I came to tell you everything.
Azrt kiablok, hogy rtsd, amit mondok.
Im shouting so that you understand what Im saying.
Azrt hvtunk tged, hogy gyere velnk Prizsba.
We called you to come to Paris with us.
Azrt nem tallod a trcd, mert elvesztetted.
You cant find your wallet because you lost it.
Azrt jttem, mert el akarok mondani mindent.
I came because I want to tell you everything.
Azrt megyek busszal, mert a kocsim lerobbant.
Im going by bus because my car broke down.

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ADVERBS OF PLACE
Hungarian adverbs of place can be classified in four groups:

-occurrence inside an object


-occurrence on the surface of an object
-occurrence next to an object
-occurrence in a wider area (postpositions)

The fourth group contains the majority of the adverbs of place since the occurrences
in the other three are restricted to a specific direction.

Its important to remember that Hungarian uses suffixes, endings and postpositions
instead of prepositions. That is, suffixes behave according to vowel harmony:
high-vowel words take high-vowel suffixes, deep-vowel words take deep-vowel
suffixes.

That being said, one should start learning the interrogative words relative to these adverbs. Here
they are:

Hol?
Where?
Hova?
Where to?
Honnan? Where from?

Unlike English, Hungarian has three different words for getting information about a
specific direction. It is called irnyhrmassg, that is the three directions
phenomenon. Think of the spanish interrogative words Dnde? A dnde? De
dnde?.

Not sure its much help for you, but theres always a glimmer of hope.
And another thing! Hova? can also have the form Hov? in which the letter is at the end of the
word instead of the letter a. Doesnt matter which you use!
And now the occurrences in details!

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OCCURRENCE INSIDE AN OBJECT


The suffixes that refer to inside are:
QUESTION
Hol?
Hova?
Honnan?

SUFFIX
-ban, -ben
-ba, -be
-bl, -bl

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
in, inside; at
in, into; to
from, from inside

DEEP WORD: VR
HIGH WORD: F
a vrban in the castle
a fben in the grass
a vrba
into the castle a fbe
into the grass
a vrbl from the castle a fbl from the grass
The vowels a, e become , when these suffixes are attached to such a noun.
DEEP WORD IN A: ISKOLA
HIGH WORD IN E: MEDENCE
az iskolban at school
a medencben in the pool
az iskolba
to school
a medencbe
into the pool
az iskolbl from school a medencbl from the pool
In fact, Hungarian is more logical in this respect compared to Germanic or Indo-European
languages. When you have understood the Hungarian point of you, youll think that, too.
Examples in sentences:
A kirly a vrban van.
Bemegyek a vrba.
Kijvk a vrbl.

The king is in the castle.


Im going into the castle.
Im coming out from the castle.

A nyl a fben alszik.


A nyl a fbe ugrik.
A nyl kiszalad a fbl.

The bunnys sleeping in the grass.


The bunnys jumping into the grass.
The bunnys running out from the grass.

You can learn at school.


Az iskolban tanulni lehet.
Htfn nem megyek iskolba. On Monday Im not going to school.
Kettkor jvk ki az iskolbl. Im coming out from school at two.
A medencben szok.
A medencbe ugrok.
A medencbl integetek.

Im swimming in the pool.


Ill jump into the pool.
Im waving to you from the pool.

In English the difference between -ba, -be and -ban, -ben is not always visible. The following
examples will surely help you.
Moziba megyek. Im going to the cinema.
Moziban vagyok. I am in the cinema.
Summary: -ba, -be = towards a direction
-ban, -ben = position, something is to be found somewhere
This will be important for learning the other suffixes to express directions!
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OCCURRENCE ON THE SURFACE OF AN OBJECT


The suffixes are:
QUESTION
SUFFIX
ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
Hol?
-n, -on, -en, -n on, at
Hova?
-ra, -re
onto, to
from
Honnan? -rl, -rl
DEEP WORD: ASZTAL
asztalon on the table
asztalra onto the table
asztalrl from the table

HIGH WORD: SZK


szken on the chair
szkre onto the chair
szkrl from the chair

Like in the previous case, these can agree with different English prepositions. Understanding the
Hungarian point of you is the only help you can count on. However, like I said before, once
understood, youll see its absolutely logical. The suffix -n is used with words in a vowel.
The vowels a, e become , in those words!
DEEP WORD IN A: FA
HIGH WORD IN E: GEREBLYE
fn
on the tree
gereblyn
on the rake
fra onto the tree gereblyre onto the rake
frl from the tree gereblyrl from the rake
Examples in sentences:
Az asztalon van a toll.
Az asztalra teszem a tollat.
Az asztalrl leesik a toll.

The pen is on the table.


Ill put the pen on(to) the table.
The pen falls from the table.

A szken van a kabt.


A szkre teszem a kabtot.
A szkrl leesik a kabt.

The jacket is on the chair.


Ill put the jacket on(to) the chair.
The jacket falls from the chair.

A fn nekel a madr.
A fra szll a madr.
A frl elrepl a madr.

The bird is singing on the tree.


The bird flies on(to) the tree.
The bird flies away from the tree.

A gereblyn tcsk ciripel.


A crickets chirping on the rake.
A gereblyre tcsk ugrik.
A cricket jumps on(to) the rake.
A gereblyrl leugrik a tcsk. The cricket jumps from the rake.
The difference between -ra, -re and -n, -on, -en, -n:
Felmszok a hegyre. I climb up (to) the mountain.
A hegyen stlok.
Im walking on the mountain.
Summary: -ra, -re = towards a direction
-n, -on, -en, -n = position, something is to be found somewhere

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OCCURRENCE NEXT TO AN OBJECT


Generally speaking, these suffixes can be expressed with the English adverbs next to sg, near
sg, beside sg. Watch the examples!
QUESTION
SUFFIX
Hol?
-nl, -nl
Hova?
-hoz, -hez, -hz
Honnan? -tl, -tl

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
next to
to, towards
from

DEEP WORD: HZ
HIGH WORD: KERTSZ
hznl
next to the house
kertsznl at the gardeners place
hzhoz to(wards) the house kertszhez to the gardener
hztl
from the house
kertsztl from the gardener
English is more complicated when Hungarian simply says -nl, -nl. Compare:
Az gyvdnl vagyok.
A bartomnl vagyok.

Im at the lawyers place.


Im at my friends place. / Im with my friend.

The vowels a, e become , in those words!


DEEP WORD IN A: FA
HIGH WORD IN E: GEREBLYE
fnl next to the tree gereblynl next to/by the rake
fhoz to the tree
gereblyhez to the rake
ftl from the tree
gereblytl from the rake
Examples in sentences:
A hznl llok.
A hzhoz megyek.
A hztl eljvk.

Im standing by/next to the house.


Im going to the house.
Im coming from the house.

A kertsznl vagyok.
A kertszhez megyek.
A kertsztl jvk.

Im with the gardener/at the gardeners place.


Im going to the gardener.
Im coming from the gardener.

A fnl piknikeznk.
A fhoz fut.
A ftl indul szakra a bogr.

Were doing a picnic by the tree.


Hes running up to the tree.
The bugs going from the tree to the north.

A gereblynl vakond tr.


The mole is digging near the rake.
A gereblyhez fut a vakond.
The mole is running up to the rake.
A gereblytl menekl a vakond. The mole is running away from the rake.
The difference between -nl, -nl and -hoz, -hez, -hz:
Az orvosnl vagyok. Im at/with the doctor.
Az orvoshoz megyek. Im going to the doctor.
Summary: -hoz, -hez, -hz = towards a direction
-nl, -nl = position, something is to be found somewhere

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178

SUFFIXES LOVE THE DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EZ, AZ


Remember this:
When the demonstrative pronouns ez, az (this, that)
take an above-mentioned suffix, the object following them also takes
the same suffix according to vowel harmony!
Examples with subjective, accusative and dative case:
Sub: ez a lny
this girl
az a n
that woman
Acc: ezt a lnyt
this girl
azt a nt
that woman
Dat: ennek a lnynak to/for this girl annak a nnek to/for that woman
Note that you have to use the definite article after the demonstrative pronoun (ez a lny,
az a n)!
More examples in sentences:
Ez az tterem drga.
Ezt az ttermet nem ismerem.
Ebben az tteremben jl fznek.
Ettl az tteremtl csak jt vrok.
Ehhez az tteremhez menj tre!

This restaurant is expensive.


I dont know this restaurant.
In this restaurant there are good cooks.
From this restaurant I only expect something good.
Go to this restaurant by eight!

Az a kocsi rgi.
Azt a kocsit eladom.
Abban a kocsiban nincs benzin.
Attl a kocsitl dbrg a hz.
Ahhoz a kocsihoz lpek.

That car is old.


Im going to sell that car.
In that car there is no gasoline.
The house is shaking with that car.
Ill make a step to(wards) that car.

Ez, az assimilate with the suffixes and lose its z:


ez + be
ez + ben
ez + bl
ez + re
ez + en
ez + rl
ez + nl
ez + hez
ez + tl

ebbe
ebben
ebbl
erre
ezen*
errl
ennl
ehhez*
ettl

az + ba
az + ban
az + bl
az + ra
az + on
az + rl
az + nl
az + hoz
az + tl

abba
abban
abbl
arra
azon
arrl
annl
ahhoz
attl

* ez, az + -en, -on = no assimilation!


* ez, az + -hez, -hoz = assimilation causes double h not spelled doubled in speech!
And the plural for ez, az is: ezek, azok . Their use is simple because their plural form
does not assimilate! Just a few examples:
ezekre (onto these), azokra (onto those), ezekben (in these), azokban (in those)

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179

SUFFIXES FOR FOREIGN COUNTRIES


Another weird thing in Hungarian is the determination of a certain direction when it comes to nonHungarian countries, geographical places.

Places foreign to Hungarian people take the suffixes for occurrences inside an
object: -ba, -be, -ban, -ben, -bl, -bl. Words having the word orszg (land,
country) in them take the deep suffixes -ba, -ban, -bl because orszg is a deepvowel word!
Olaszorszgba (Im going) to Italy
Olaszorszgban (Im) in Italy
Olaszorszgbl from Italy

Knba (Im going) to China


Knban (Im) in China
Knbl from China

Though this formula is valid for foreign places, it is not for the Hungarian places.
Hungarian people attach the suffix of occurrences on surface to their own
country!
Magyarorszgra (Im going) to Hungary
Magyarorszgon (Im) in Hungary
Magyarorszgrl from Hungary
Technically speaking, we say on Hungary, almost giving the impression of some
kind of superiority.
Some examples for cities:
Berlinbe (Im going) to Berlin
Berlinben (Im) in Berlin
Berlinbl from Berlin

Rmba (Im going) to Rome


Rmban (Im) in Rome
Rmbl from Rome

Its easy to doubt that this rule is not valid in all cases.

Cities ending in -j, -m, -n, -ny, -i take the suffixes -ba, -be, -ban, ben, -bl, -bl. All
other cities (more or less) take -ra, -re, -rl, -rl, and -on, -en, -n like
Magyarorszg.
Esztergomba Esztergomban Esztergombl
Tihanyba Tihanyban Tihanybl
Sopronba Sopronban Sopronbl
Budapest Budapestre Budapesten - Budapestrl
Pcs Pcsre Pcsen/Pcsett Pcsrl
Szzhalombatta Szzhalombattra Szzhalombattn - Szzhalombattrl
Kolozsvr Kolozsvrra Kolozsvron/Kolozsvrott Kolozsvrrl

Supplemental: some city names can take two suffixes like Pcs and Kolozsvr. It is
because the suffix -tt comes from the Finno-Ugric times and it is still used with some
cities, but it is heard more and more rarely in the spoken language. Another
example: Gyr Gyrbe Gyrben/Gyrtt Gyrbl.

Islands take -ra, -re, -on, -en, -n, -rl, -rl: Hawaii-ra, a Kanri szigeteken,
Korzikrl.

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180

DIFFERENT POINT OF VIEW FROM ENGLISH


Foreign students have to be careful with how translating certain suffixes in English. The use of
Hungarian suffixes often differs from that of English prepositions. Examples:
HUNGARIAN
Az egyetemen vagyok.
Iskolban vagyok.
Az llomson vagyok.

ENGLISH
Im at the university.
Im at school.
Im at the station.

EXACT TRANSLATION FROM HUNGARIAN


Im on the university.
Im in school.
Im on the station.

Az egyetemre megyek.
Iskolba megyek.
Az llomsra megyek.
A villamosra szllok.

Im going to the university.


Im going to school.
Im going to the station.
Im getting on the tram.

Im going onto the university.


Im going into school.
Im going onto the station.
Im getting onto the tram.

Az egyetemrl jvk.
Az iskolbl jvk.
Az llomsrl jvk.
A villamosrl leszllok.

Im coming from the university.


Im coming from school.
Im coming from the station.
Im getting off the tram.

Im coming from the university.


Im coming from school.
Im coming from the station.
Im getting from the tram.

Hungarian people go on the surface of the station, inside the school in a more proper sense.

PERSONAL ADVERBS OF PLACE FORMED FROM SUFFIXES


Like the accusative and dative case of the personal pronouns have their own forms, so do personal
adverbs of place. Examples: in me, with him, from you, etc..

SUFFIXES
-BE
-BEN
-BL

-ON = R
-RA
-RL

-NL
-HOZ
-TL

They are formed with the possessive endings attached to a suffix for adverb
of place. Attention! Sometimes the suffix is deep, sometimes high! Theres no rlem,
only rlam! There is no bannam, only bennem! Here they are:
HOL?
bennem
benned
benne
bennnk
bennetek
bennk
rajtam
rajtad
rajta
rajtunk
rajtatok
rajtuk
nlam
nlad
nla
nlunk
nlatok
nluk

WHERE?
in me
in you
in him/her
in us
in you
in them
on me
on you
on him/her
on us
on you
on them
from me
from you
from him/her
from us
from you
from them

HOVA?
belm
beld
bele/bel/belje
belnk
beltek
beljk
rm (rem)
rd (red)
r (re)
rnk (renk)
rtok (retok)
rjuk (rejuk)
hozzm
hozzd
hozz
hozznk
hozztok
hozzjuk

WHERE TO?
into me
into you
into him/her
into us
into you
into them
onto me
onto you
onto him/her
onto us
onto you
onto them
to me
to you
to him/her
to us
to you
to them

HONNAN?
bellem
belled
belle
bellnk
belletek
bellk
rlam
rlad
rla
rlunk
rlatok
rluk
tlem
tled
tle
tlnk
tletek
tlk

WHERE FROM?
from me
from you
from him/her
from us
from you
from them
from me
from you
from him/her
from us
from you
from them
from me
from you
from him/her
from us
from you
from them

Rem is a more elegant form. The short forms are prefered: rm, rd, etc.
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181

EMPHASIS ON THE PERSON

Like the possessive endings (az n hzam), personal adverbs of place can be
stressed by prefixing personal pronouns to them. In this case the personal
pronouns are written together with the adverbs, except the polite forms taking
the original suffixes. Here they are:
nbennem, tebenned, benne, mibennnk, tibennetek, bennk
nben, Magban, nkben, Magukban
Examples:
ntlem nem kapsz semmit!

From me youll get nothing!

Tenlad van mg mindig a tollam?

Do you still have my pen?

bennk bzom, nem tebenned.

I have faith in them, not in you.

rla van sz, nem Magrl.

Its about him/her, not about You.

ACCUMULATION OF SUFFIXES
Weve already talked about suffixes able to take other suffixes. Examples:
az gynl
az gyon
az gyval
az gyaihoz
az gyukrl
az gyadnl

(Im) next to the bed


(Im) on the bed
with his bed
to(wards) his beds
from their bed
near your bed

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182

OCCURRENCE IN A WIDER AREA - POSTPOSITIONS


This is the fourth group. These occurrences are expressed with postpositions which are different
from suffixes in certain aspects:
1. The most important aspect is their meaning. A postposition by itself has its own
meaning in contrast with a suffix.
2. Suffixes and endings have one syllable, while postpositions have two.
3. Suffixes and endings have two or three forms which have to agree with vowel harmony.
Postpositions have one form only.

POSTPOSITIONS FOR ADVERBS OF PLACE


Here is the list of the postpositions determining a place/direction. They have to be learned
according to the three directions phenomenon, too.
HOL? WHERE?
eltt
in front of
mgtt behind
fltt
above
underneath
alatt
mellett next to, near
kztt between
krl
around
-

HOVA? WHERE TO?


el
in front of
mg behind
fl
over
under
al
mell next to, near
kz between
kr around
fel
towards

HONNAN? WHERE FROM?


ell
from
mgl from behind
fll
from above
from under
all
melll from (the vicinity of)
kzl from between; of
fell
from (a direction)

On the whole, while in English one has to remember what preposition follows or precedes an
adverb of place, Hungarian expresses these things in one word. Naturally, it is a must to learn the
suffixes in accordance with the directions. And that goes as follows:
-, -
For the question Hova? the suffix is:
For the question Hol? the suffix is:
-tt, except krl
For the question Honnan? the suffix is: -l -l, -l
Examples:
A hz eltt llok.
A fa mg bjok.
A fszek fl repl.
A kocsi melll rohan el.
Az emberek kztt rzi jl magt.
A fld alatt s a vakond.
A Fld a Nap krl kering.
A vihar kzeledik a vros fel.

Im standing in front of the house.


Im hiding behind the tree.
Its flying over the nest.
Hes running away from the car.
He feels good amongst people.
The mole is digging under the soil.
The Earth revolves around the sun.
The tempest is approaching (going towards) the city.

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183

PERSONAL POSTPOSITIONS
Just like suffixes, postpositions also have their own personal forms.
HOL? WHERE?
in front of me
elttem
eltted
in front of you
eltte
in front of him
in front of us
elttnk
elttetek
in front of you
elttk
in front of them
alattam
under me
alattad
under you
alatta
under him
alattunk
under us
alattatok
under you
alattuk
under them
behind me
mgttem
mgtted
behind you
mgtte
behind him
behind us
mgttnk
mgttetek behind you
mgttk
behind them
above me
flttem
above you
fltted
fltte
above him
flttnk
above us
above you
flttetek
flttk
above them
mellettem
next to me
melletted
next to you
mellette
next to him/her
mellettnk
next to us
mellettetek next to you
next to them
mellettk
kz(t)tem
between me
kz(t)ted
between you
kz(t)te
between him
kz(t)tnk between us
kz(t)tetek between you
kz(t)tk
between them
krlttem
around me
krltted
around you
krltte
around him
krlttnk around us
krlttetek around you
krlttk
around them
-

HOVA? WHERE TO?


in front of me
elm
eld
in front of you
el, elje in front of him
in front of us
elnk
eltek
in front of you
eljk
in front of them
alm
under me
ald
under you
al, alja under him
alnk
under us
altok
under you
aljuk
under them
behind me
mgm
mgd
behind you
mg
behind him
mgnk behind us
mgtek behind you
mgjk behind them
over me
flm
over you
fld
fl
over him
flnk
over us
over you
fltek
fljk
over them
mellm
next to me
melld
next to you
mell
next to him/her
mellnk
next to us
melltek next to you
melljk next to them
kzm
between me
kzd
between you
kz
between him
kznk
between us
kztek
between you
kzjk
between them
krm
around me
krd
around you
kr
around him
krnk
around us
krtek
around you
krjk
around them
towards me
felm
towards you
feld
towards him
fel
felnk
towards us
feltek
towards you
feljk
towards them

HONNAN? WHERE FROM?


from me
ellem
elled
from you
elle
from him
from us
ellnk
elletek
from you
ellk
from them
allam
from under me
allad
from under you
alla
from under him
allunk
from under us
allatok
from under you
alluk
from under them
from behind me
mglem
mgled
from behind you
mgle
from behind him
mglnk from behind us
mgletek from behind you
mglk
from behind them
from above me
fllem
from above you
flled
flle
from above him
fllnk
from above us
from above you
flletek
fllk
from above them
melllem
from me
mellled
from you
mellle
from him/her
melllnk from us
mellletek from you
melllk
from them
kzlem
from/of me
kzled
from/of you
kzle
from/of him
kzlnk
from/of us
kzletek from/of you
kzlk
from/of them
-

fellem
felled
felle
fellnk
felletek
fellk

from me
from you
from him
from us
from you
from them

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184

POSTPOSITIONS WITH VERBAL PREFIXES


Like verbal prefixes are added to the verbs, the same way postpositions can be added to
verbs when used as prefixes.
mellesik to fall near sg
alr
to sign (literally: underwrite)
krlhajz circumnavigate
and so on...

EMPHASIS ON THE PERSON


The person can be brought into relief in this case, too.
nelttem, teeltted, eltte, mielttnk, tielttetek, elttk
n eltt, Maga eltt, nk eltt, Maguk eltt
ATTENTION! When you use the polite forms, those postpositions are written separately from
the polite pronouns. Examples:
n(k) eltt, n(k) el, n(k) ell
Maga/Maguk alatt, Maga/Maguk al, Maga/Maguk all
and so on

DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS WITH POSTPOSITIONS


Obviously, these can be coupled with postpositions. But be careful! Theres a phenomenon going
on, already learned with the suffixes. Both the demonstrative pronoun and the object take
the postposition! Furthermore, ez, az lose their z if the postposition begins with a
consonant.
ez alatt a hz alatt
az eltt a fa eltt
e mell a knyv mell
a fltt a polc fltt
A mgtt a fal mgtt mg egy fal van.

under this house


in front of that tree
beside that book
above that shelf
Behind that wall theres another wall.

But you can avoid this phenomenon with a method, namely with the adverbs of place itt, ott, ide,
oda, innen, onnan:
itt a hz alatt
ott a fa eltt
ide a knyv mell
ott a polc fltt
ott a fal mgtt

here under the house


there in front of the tree
(to) here beside this book
there above the shelf
there behind the wall

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185

LETS GO HERE AND THERE!


Now lets talk about two adverbs of place: here/there. Again, learn them according to directions.
HOL? WHERE? HOVA? WHERE TO?
HONNAN? WHERE?
itt
here
ide (to) here innen from here
ott there oda (to) there onnan from there
Examples:
Itt vagyok.
Ide jvk.
Innen indulok.
Ott vannak.
Oda mennek.
Onnan indulnak.

Im here.
Im coming here.
Im starting from here.
Theyre there. There they are!
Theyre going there.
Theyre starting from there.

And now lets see what happens if the suffixes -ra, -re are attached to the demonstrative pronouns
az, ez.
ez erre(fel)
az arra(fel)

Arra megyek.
Erre megyek.

Im going that way.


Im going this way.

The postposition -fel serves for intensifying the direction. The question word is Hova? or
Merre? and they have the same meaning.
-Hova msz? Arrafel. -Where are you going? That way.
-Merre msz? Errefel. -Where are you going? This way.

OTHER FUNDEMANTAL ADVERBS OF PLACE


Here they are: kint, bent, fent, lent and kvl, bell, alul, fell. Lets see them in details!
HOL? WHERE?
kint, kinn
outside
bent, benn inside
lent, lenn
below, underneath
fent, fenn above, up

HOVA? WHERE TO?


ki(fel) outside
be(fel) inside
le(fel) down
fel(fel) up

HONNAN? WHERE FROM?


kintrl from outside
bentrl from inside
lentrl from underneath
fentrl from above

kvl
bell
alul
fell

kvlre
bellre
alulra
fellre

kvlrl
bellrl
alulrl
fellrl

outside
inside, within
below, underneath
above, up

(to) outside
(to) inside
down
up

from outside
from inside
from underneath
from above

First of all, kint, bent, lent, fent have two forms. The rule is: you can choose whichever you want
from the Hol? group. Then you see ki, be, le, fel can be stressed with -fel.
And now another thing that might be confusing for a foreigner: English doesnt make much of a
difference between outside and outside, but Hungarian does! But what the heck is the difference
between kint and kvl, for example? The answer is simple: kvl, bell, alul, fell are missing
something! Literally something!
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186

valamin, valakin kvl


valamin, valakin bell
valamin, valakin alul
valamin, valakin fell
valamin innen
valamin tl
valamin, valakin t
valamin, valakin keresztl
valamin, valakin vgig
valaki, valami mentn

outside something, somebody


within something, somebody
under something, somebody
above something, somebody
over something, somebody
over something, somebody
through something, somebody
through something, somebody
along something, somebody
along something, somebody

Note! In this context the above-mentioned adverbs take the suffixes -on, -en, -n, -n,
except the postposition mentn. Thats why you say valamin, valakin! Theyre used both in
general and figurative sense.
Example:
Kint vagyok a kertben.
-Hova msz? Ki a kertbe.
Kintrl jvk.
Benn l a hzban.
Lent piknikeznek a vlgyben.
Fentrl kiabl a hegymsz.
Lvvolsgon kvl van.
A norml rtkeken bell van.
Vrakozson fell teljest.
ron alul adja el a villjt.

Im outside in the garden.


-Where are you going? Out to the garden.
Im coming from outside.
Hes sitting in(side) the house.
Theyre doing a picnic down there in the valley.
The mountainer shouts from above.
Its out of reach of the guns.
Its within normal values.
Literally: do sg above expectation.
He sells his cottage at a loss. (under price)

More examples:
Watch the use of the adverbs and observe the difference compared to English!
az orszgon kvl
kvl-bell
Rajtam kvl senki nincs itt.
Rmn t Prizsba replnk.
A repl Rmn keresztl repl.
Ezen fell nincs ms mondanivalm.
A Tiszn innen gynyr a tj.
A vroson t megyek haza.
Menj vgig a parton!
Menj a part vgig!
A foly mentn horgszok pecznak.

outside the country


in and out
Theres nobody here beside me.
Were flying through Rome to Paris.
The plane will fly through Rome.
I have nothing to say other than that. (above that)
Over the Tisza theres a beautiful landscape.
Im going home across the city.
Go along the shore!
Go up to the end of the shore!
There are anglers fishing along the river.

Vgig has the meaning of to the end of a place and also along a place, while mentn means
along, next to. Besides, these adverbs can act like verbal prefixes.
tlcsordul
tkel
keresztldf
vgigcsinl

to overflow
to cross (to go across)
to drive through, to pierce
to do something until its done

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187

PERSONAL FORMS FOR ADVERBS WITH SOMEBODY, SOMETHING


Now well talk about these adverbs: kvl, fell, tl, keresztl. The rest is said in a different way
or they dont have such a form. And this is how the personal forms are done:
rajtam kvl
rajtad kvl
rajta kvl
rajtunk kvl
rajtatok kvl
rajtuk kvl

beside me
beside you
beside him/her
beside us
beside you
beside them

rajtam fell
rajtad fell
rajta fell
rajtunk fell
rajtatok fell
rajtuk fell

above me
above you
above him/her
above us
above you
above them

rajtam tl
rajtad tl
rajta tl
rajtunk tl
rajtatok tl
rajtuk tl

over me
over you
over him/her
over us
over you
over them

rajtam keresztl
rajtad keresztl
rajta keresztl
rajtunk keresztl
rajtatok keresztl
rajtuk keresztl

through me
through you
through him
through us
through you
through them

And you say the polite forms like this: n(k)n kvl, Magn kvl, Magukon kvl.
Attention! Theres no form like rajtam t. Instead of t we say keresztl!

EGYTT, SZEMBEN, ELLEN


valamivel, valakivel egytt
valamivel, valakivel szemben
valami, valaki ellen
A ruhival egytt minden holmijt viszi.
Veletek egytt jttek k is.
A bankkal szemben van egy hivatal.
Vele szemben nem mernek fellzadni.

together/along with sy, sg


against sy, sg
against sy, sg

Along with her clothes shell take all her stuff.


They came along with you.
In front of the bank theres an office.
They dont dare rebel against him.

Note! The word ellen is used with valami, valaki without the suffixes of surface!
Sometimes szemben can have the meaning ellen.
Ki ellen indulsz?
Who are you running against?
Ellenem nem nyerhetsz. You cant fight me (win against me).
Besides, ellen has personal forms:
ellenem, ellened, ellene, ellennk, ellenetek, ellenk
n ellen, Maga ellen, nk ellen, Maguk ellen
The personal forms for egytt, szemben are done like this:
velem egytt
veled egytt
vele/nnel/magval egytt
velnk egytt
veletek egytt
velk/nkkel/magukkal egytt

together with me
together with you
together with him/her/You
together with us
together with you
together with them/You

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188

velem szemben
veled szemben
vele/nnel/magval szemben
velnk szemben
veletek szemben
velk/nkkel/magukkal szemben

against me
against you
against him/her/You
against us
against you
against them/You

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189

SUMMARY TABLE FOR ADVERBS OF PLACE


In this table you see the adverbs of place and the linguistic names for the suffixes enumerated.
SUFFIX, POSTPOSITION
-BA, -BE
-BAN, -BEN
-BL, -BL
-RA, -RE
-N, -ON, -EN, -N
-RL, -RL
-HOZ, -HEZ, -HZ
-NL, -NL
-TL, -TL

CASE
illative
inessive
elative
sublative
superessive
delative
allative
adesive
ablative

EL
ELTT
ELL

MG
MGTT
MGL

FL
FLTT
FLL

AL
ALATT
ALL

MELL
MELLETT
MELLL

KZ
KZTT
KZL

KR
KRL

FEL
FELL

VMN/VKN KVL

VMN BELL
VMN ALUL
VMN/VKN FELL
VMN INNEN
VMN/VKN TL
VMN T
VMN/VKN KERESZTL
VMN VGIG
VM MENTN
VM/VK ELLEN
VMVEL/VKVEL SZEMBEN
VMVEL/VKVEL EGYTT

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
movement into the interior of something
occurrence inside something
movement from the inside of something
movement towards the surface
occurrence on the surface
movement from the surface
movement towards the vicinity of something
occurrence next to something
movement from the vicinity of something
(go) in front of
(be) in front of
from
(go) behind
(be) behind
from behind
(go) over
(be) above
from above
(go) under
(be) underneath
from underneath
(go) next to
(be) next to
from the vicinity of
(go) between, among
(be) between, among
from between; of
(go) around
(be) around
(go) towards
from the direction of
outside of sg, sy; beside sg, sy
inside sg, in the interior of sg
below sg, sy
above/over sg, sy
over sg
over sg; beside sy
through/across sg
through sy, by means of sy, sg
along sg, up to the end of sg
along sg
against sg, sy
against sg, sy
together/along with sg, sy

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ADVERBS OF TIME
Once learned the adverbs of place, adverbs of time are nothing to make a whole new grammar
book about. Its easy to follow this reasoning since English uses the same method to some extent.
And that method goes like this:

SOME WORDS CAN BE BOTH PREPOSITIONS AND ADVERBS.


Examples:
Az gy fltt polc van.
Theres a shelf above the bed.
Az gyhoz kpest a polc fejjebb van. Compared to the bed, the shelf is more above.
Above in the first sentence is a preposition (postposition in Hungarian), and an adverb in the
second one.
However, before losing ourselves in how we use these words, lets begin with something that
doesnt seem to be relative to adverbs of time. That is the instrumental case expressed with
the suffixes -val, -vel whose English equivalent is the preposition with.

THE SUFFIXES -VAL, -VEL


The question words with -val, -vel are formed like this:
Mivel?
Kivel?
Hnnyal?
Mennyivel?
Kivel?
Melyikkel? Melyikekkel?

Whatwith?
Whowith?
How manywith?
How muchwith?
Whosewith?
Whichwith?

Example: Kinek a kocsijval msz Pestre? Whose car are you going to Pest with?
Their use requires a little more explanation.

If a word ends in a vowel, there is no problem whatever.


a kutyval with the dog

If a word ends in a consonant, -val, -vel assimilate with that last consonant:
a hz + -val = a hzzal
a kert + -vel = a kerttel
Ceruzval rok.
Tollal rok.
A felesgvel tncol.
Busszal jr.

with the house


with the garden
Im writing with a pencil.
Im writing with a pen.
Hes dancing with his wife.
He usually takes the bus. (literally: He goes with bus)

Remember! THE V IN -VAL, -VEL ASSIMILATES WITH THE LAST CONSONANT!

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191

And the personal forms for it are:


velem
veled
vele
velnk veletek
velk
with me with you with him/her/it with us with you with them

The polite forms are: nnel, magval, nkkel, magukkal. Of course, they can be
intensified: nvelem, teveled, vele, mivelnk, tiveletek, velk

The polite forms cannot be intensified.

THE SUFFIXES -VAL, -VEL WITH THE DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EZ, AZ


The possibilities are two: the v in -val, -vel assimilates with the z in az, ez or vice versa.
ezzel
evvel
azzal
avval

with this
with this
with that
with that

And the plural: ezekkel (with these), azokkal (with those)


According to grammatic rules evvel, avval, ezzel are pronouns, while azzal is a conjunction
when followed by hogy.
Evvel/Ezzel a tollal rok.
Avval a lnnyal tncolok.
Nem segtesz azzal, hogy hazudsz.
Azzal, hogy hazudsz, nem segtesz.

Im writing with this pen.


Im dancing with that girl.
You dont help with lying to me.
Since youre lying to me, youre not much of a help.

However, this distinctive use has frayed out of the spoken language. You could also say:
Avval, hogy hazudsz

WITH TIME
I could start explaining myself with this sentence: Idvel minden seb begygyul All wounds
heal in time. You see English says in time, but Hungarian prefers with time! Im getting at
the fact that in Hungarian it is possible to use -val, -vel more often than the preposition with in
English. And the reason for that is:
jjel
nappal
reggel
sszel
tavasszal
egyttal
idvel
jjel-nappal

at night
daytime, by, day
in the morning
in autumn/fall
in spring
at the same time
in time
day and night

Its apparent that a bunch of adverbs of time can be coupled with -val, -vel.
Some of them can do without: este in the evening; jszaka at night. In addition, some of
them behave like adverb and noun at the same time.
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192

jjel
nappal
reggel
este
jszaka

(the) night; at night


daytime; in the daytime
(the) morning; in the morning
(the evening); in the evening
(the) night; at night

jszaka and jjel have the same meaning.


jjel/jszaka a baglyok huhognak. Owls ululate at night.

THE SUFFIX -KOR


The suffix -kor determines a certain period. It is called TEMPORAL CASE . Not to be confused
with the noun kr written with long meaning disease! But theres another noun kor with short o
meaning age, era!
kr disease
kor age, era, period
-kor preposition at
It has one form only! The question word is Mikor?. Examples:
Mikor?
jflkor
szrkletkor
napnyugtakor, napkeltekor
pirkadatkor
Hatkor tallkozunk.
karcsonykor
hsvtkor
mskor
brmikor
ilyenkor

When?
at midnight
at nightfall
at sunset, at sunrise
at dawn
Ill see you at six.
at Christmas
at Easter
another time
whenever; at all hours
at this time; in this case

Of course, it can be attached to the pronouns ez, az: ekkor, akkor.


Other periods of day or season are expressed in a different way.
hajnalban
dlben
tlen
nyron
dleltt
dlutn

at dawn
at noon
in winter
in summer
in the morning
in the afternoon

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MOMENTS OR PERIODS WITH THE SUFFIX -IG


Lets ask a question relative to a specific moment:
Mikor kelsz fel? When do you wake up?
Lets ask a question relative to a specific period:
Meddig maradsz Magyarorszgon? How long are you staying in Hungary?
The question Meddig? has a meaning for time (How long?) and place (How far?).
Meddig msz mg? How far are you going?
That is Meddig? = How long? How far?
To express a limit for a distance, the suffix -ig is used which refers to time and place, and
has one form only. If you want to say From when to when? or From where to where?, then the
suffixes -tl, -tl are used with -ig.
hromtl hatig
reggeltl estig
Keddig mg vrok.
Holnaptl minden megvltozik.
A vonat t percig vr.
Pcstl Pestig megy a vonat.
Elviszlek az iskolig.
Torkig vagyok veletek!

from three to six


from morning till night
Ill wait until Tuesday.
From tomorrow on everything changes.
The train will be waiting five minutes.
The train goes from Pcs to Pest.
Ill take you to school.
Im through with you!

The last sentence literally means: Im up to my throat with you!


Summary: ...-tl, -tl-ig = fromto
This phenomenon with -tl, -tl + -ig is called TERMINATIVE CASE .

THE SUFFIXES -RA, -RE


These suffixes allow you to ask someone by what time something will be done. The question is:
Mikorra? - Whenby? By what time?
-Mikorra jegyeztek be? Nyolcra.
-What time were you enrolled? -Eight.
-Mikorra fejezed be a munkt? Htfre.
-By what time will you have finished your work? By Monday.

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194

HOW LONG?
This question word goes like this: the interrogative word Mi? takes the adverb of time ta, that is:
Mita?
The answer is not evident in all cases: it is formed with ta, but also with the suffixes -e, -ja equal
to for, since. And as usual, the pronouns az, ez can be paired with ta.
Mita vagy itt?
Kt hete.
Hrom napja.
Egy rja.
Egy ve.
Rgta.
J ideje.
Azta, hogy elmondta
Amita idejtt, egsz nap alszik.

How long have you been here?


For two weeks.
For three days.
For an hour.
For a year.
For a long time.
For a while.
Since he told me about
Since he came here, hes been sleeping all day long.

Attention! When you ask From when to when?, Hungarian says Mettl meddig? This rule is not
always valid in English, though. It is translated more like How long?
Mettl meddig maradsz Pcsen?
Htftl pntekig.
Ketttl tig.
Amg szksges.

How long are you staying in Pcs?


From Monday to Friday.
From two to five.
Until its necessary.

Another new word: amg = until. The Hungarian amg is ALWAYS preceded by the negative
nem, unlike English!
Amg nem fekszel le, nem mondok mest.
Ill tell you no tales, until you go to bed.
-Meddig duzzogsz mg? Amg el nem megy. -How long will you be sulking? Until he leaves.

MLVA
It is a postposition that refers to an event in the future. Formed from the verb mlik (to pass).
The English equivalent is the preposition in.
Hat nap mlva tallkozunk.
See you in six days.
Egy v mlva gimnziumba megyek. Im going to high-school in a years time.

-N, -EN, -ON, -N BELL


Postposition that determines a limit in time. English equivalents: in, within. Bell takes the
suffixes -n, -on, -en, -n!
Tz hnapon bell el kell vgeznnk a munkt. Well have to finish the job within ten month.

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ELTT, UTN
The postposition eltt means before, while utn expresses after.
Kt ra eltt ne hvj!
Kt ra utn hvhatsz.
hrom v utn
nem sokkal karcsony eltt
holnaputn
tegnapeltt

Dont call me before two oclock!


You can call me after two oclock.
after three years
short before Christmas
the day after tomorrow
the day before yesterday

-VAL, -VEL EZELTT


This construction expresses a moment in the past and even determines it. The English
equivalent is: ago. Eltt is not to be confused with ezeltt!
t perccel ezeltt lttam.
I saw her five minutes ago.
Kilenc hnappal ezeltt mg nem tudtam rla. I didnt know about it nine month ago.

THE SUFFIXES -(O)NTA, -(E)NTE, -NKNT


These express frequency, that something is repeating at certain intervals.

The English equivalents are: every or ons. The suffix -nknt is used with the
days of the week and periods of the day.

These suffixes can be replaced by the indefinite pronoun minden meaning every. In
this case, minden is followed by -n, -on, -en, -n for days and ban, -ben for
year, month! See the examples:
naponta
hetente
havonta
vente
htfnknt
keddenknt
estnknt
dlutnonknt

minden nap
minden hten
minden hnapban
minden vben
minden htfn
minden kedden
minden este
minden dlutn

every/each day
every week
every month
every year
every Monday, on Mondays
every Tuesday, on Tuesdays
every night
every afternoon

The questions are: Milyen gyakran? Hnyszor? How often? How many times?

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THE DEFINITE ARTICLE AZ


Sometimes the definite article may assume the function of putting an adverb of time in
past or future tense.
az este
= tegnap este
last night
= ezen a hten
this week
a hten
a napokban = az elmlt napokban the other day
Az este nem tudtam aludni.
A hten alig lttalak.
A napokban hallottam a hrt.
Majd a nyron napozunk!

I couldnt get a sleep last night.


I hardly saw you this week.
Ive heard the news recently.
Well sunbathe next summer.

FEL
This postposition equals to: towards. You see the literal translation below.
este fel
towards night
reggel fel towards morning

KZTT
English equivalent: between. It expresses a given moment between two points in time.
kt s hrom ra kztt between two and three oclock

TJBAN, TJT, KRL


If something happens approximately at a specific moment, Hungarian offers more
possibilities: krl, tjban, tjt.
Dl krl ebdelni megynk.
Nyolc krl vrlak a sznhzban.
jfltjt szinte mindenki alszik.
t ra tjban rkezik a vonat.

Were going to have lunch round at noon.


Im waiting for you in the theatre at about eight.
Almost everybody sleeps around midnight.
The train arrives at about five.

IN PROGRESS
Hungarian has at least four postpositions to express something is in progess, is happening
during a specific moment. Here they are: kzben, alatt, sorn, folyamn. Theyre
equivalents for during, in the course of.
Alvs kzben tehetlenek vagyunk.
Evs kzben jn meg az tvgy.
A trgyals alatt minden rendben
ment.
A verseny folyamn pran
megsrltek.
A vizsglat sorn nem talltak hibt.

While sleeping, were helpless.


Appetite comes while eating. (Much will have more.)
Everything was alright during the negotiation.
In the course of the race some people have been
injured.
No error was found during the investigation.

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197

-N, -EN, -ON, -N KERESZTL/T


In this way, one can express a longer, more extended period. English equivalent: for.
Ive been listening to his complains for years now.
veken t hallgattam a nyavajgst.
Hnapokon keresztl nem ehet zsros telt. Hes not allowed to eat fat meals for month.
Kt rn keresztl bmult maga el.
He stared out of his head for two hours.
Its worth to mention hosszat which has the same meaning, but it is used in certain expressions:
rk hosszat for hours on end; naphosszat all day long

MIELTT
English says: before
Mieltt megszidsz, hallgass meg! Before you haul me over the coals, please listen to me!

SOME FREQUENT ADVERBS OF TIME


soha
nha
valaha
sok(ra)
sokig
rkk
soha tbbet/tbb soha/tbb nem
ppen most/az elbb/az imnt
ksn
korn
nyomban/azonnal/rgtn/tstnt
mr
most
ma este/ma dlutn/ma reggel
mg ma

never
sometimes, now and then
ever (Have you ever loved me?)
late
for a long time
forever
never again
just now
late
early
right away, right now, immediately, on the spot
already, yet (I know already. Have you arrived yet?)
now
tonight/this afternoon/this morning
this very day

WHICH YEAR?
Hungarian has special words for extending which year Im going to do something.
az idn this year
tavaly last year
jvre next year
Examples in sentences:
Az idn rettsgizek.
Im graduating from high school this year.
Tavaly nsltem meg.
I married last year.
Jvre egyetemre megyek. Next year Im going to college.

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198

SUMMARY TABLE FOR ADVERBS OF TIME


SUFFIXES, POSTPOSITIONS
-VAL, -VEL
-KOR
-IG
-NKNT, -NTA, -NTE
-TL, -TL
TA
MLVA
KZBEN, ALATT
SORN, FOLYAMN
KRL, TJT, TJBAN
FEL
ELTT
UTN

-VAL, -VEL EZELTT


KZTT
HOSSZAT

-N, -ON, -EN, -N


T/KERESZTL
-N, -ON, -EN, -N BELL

CASE
instrumental
temporal
terminative
distributive
temporal
-

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
with
at (nine, dawn)
until (tomorrow), up to (the house)
every, each, ons (every day, on
Mondays)
from (on)
for (a day), since (I arrived)
in, within (a year)
during
in the course of
about, round, towards
towards (a period of hour or day starts)
before
after
ago (two days ago)
between (between Monday and Friday)
for (for hours on end)
for (for two days)

within (a week)

DATE AND TIME


napok (days), hnapok (month), vek (years), ra-rk (hours), percek (minutes), msodpercek
(seconds), vtizedek (decades), vszzadok (centuries), vezredek (millennia), pillanatok
(moments)

MONTH
Hnapok: janur, februr, mrcius, prilis, mjus, jnius, jlius, augusztus, szeptember,
oktber, november, december
If you want to say in February, in November, use the suffixes -ban, -ben: februrban,
novemberben. Note that Hungarian writes month in lowercase!

DAYS
Napok: htf, kedd, szerda, cstrtk, pntek, szombat, vasrnap
If you want to say on Monday, on Tuesday, use the suffixes -n, -on, -en, -n: htfn, kedden.
Exception to this rules is vasrnap which is a noun and an adverb at the same time: on
Sunday vasrnap!
If you want to say on Mondays/every Monday, use the suffixes -n, -on, -en, -n + -knt:
htfnknt, szerdnknt. In this case vasrnap takes the suffixes, too: vasrnaponknt! Or
just say: minden htfn, minden vasrnap, minden pnteken
ma (today), holnap (tomorrow), tegnap (yesterday), holnaputn (the day after tomorrow),
tegnapeltt (the day before yesterday)
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199

ma reggel/este (this morning/evening), holnap dlutn (tomorrow in the afternoon), jvre


(next year), tavaly (last year), mlt hten (last week), htvge-htvgn (at weekend)
htkznap (on weekday)

PERIODS
Napszakok: reggel (morning), dleltt (morning), nappal (day-time), dl (noon), dlutn
(afternoon), este (evening), jszaka (night), jfl (midnight), hajnal (dawn)
Some periods of the day can be a noun and adverb of time in one, some cant. Red indicates the
ones that require suffixes.
reggel
dleltt
nappal
dl
dlutn
este
jszaka
jfl
hajnal

morning
morning
day-time
noon
afternoon
evening
night
midnight
dawn

reggel
dleltt
nappal
dlben
dlutn
este
jszaka
jflkor
hajnalban

in the morning
in the morning
in the day-time
at noon
in the afternoon
in the evening
at night
at midnight
at dawn

If you want to say I had a great time on this evening, use -n, -on, -en, -n:
Jl reztem magam ezen az estn.
And another thing: this very morning mg ma reggel; this very day mg ma

SEASONS
vszakok: tl (winter), tavasz (spring), nyr (summer), sz (autumn, fall). They want -val, -vel or
-en, -on badly!
tlen
nyron
tavasszal
sszel

in winter
in summer
in spring
in autumn

telente/minden tlen
nyaranta/minden nyron
minden tavasszal
minden sszel

every winter
every summer
every spring
every autumn

HOLIDAY, FEAST
Hungarian uses the word: nnep and the plural is nnepek.
karcsonykor
hsvtkor
Anyk napjn
szletsnapon
a szletsnapomon
nvnapon

at Christmas
at Easter
on Mothers Day
on birthday
on my birthday
on name-day

Note that Hungarian does not write these words with capital letters. Perhaps its more polite
to write Anyk napja like that, but not mandatory.

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200

ABOUT TIME
The Hungarian word for time is: id which also means wheather.
Egy ra van.
Kt ra van.
Dl van.
jfl van.

Its one oclock.


Its two oclock.
Its noon.
Its midnight.

You see its simple to say the time in Hungarian. But what if you want to say: five past ten, etc.
Heres the solution:
quarter past five
quarter four
negyed ngy
half past three
Literal translation: half four
fl ngy
hromnegyed ngy quarter to four
three-quarter four
Apparently, Hungarian is a little bit more consequent about time. If 15 minutes have passed
after three oclock, that means that its only a quarter part of four oclock. Thats why we
say: negyed ngy, and so on
Examples:
HUNGARIAN
Hny ra van?
Mennyi az id?
Egy ra van.
Negyed kett van.
Fl kett van.
Hromnegyed kett van.
Kt ra van.
Negyed ngy van.
Fl tz van.
Hromnegyed hat van.
Hny rakor? Mikor?
egykor
htkor
fl tkor
negyed nyolc utn tz perccel
Tz ra elmlt.
t perc mlva hrom.
Mikorra?
tre

ENGLISH
What time is it?
Whats the time?
Its one oclock.
Its quarter past one.
Its half past one.
Its quarter to two.
Its two oclock.
Its quarter past three.
Its half past nine.
Its quarter to six.
At what time? When?
at one
at seven
at half past four
at twenty-five past seven
Its past ten.
Its five to three.
By what time? By when?
by five

LITERAL TRANSLATION
How many hours are?
How much is the time?
One hour it is.
Quarter two it is.
Half two it is.
Three-quarter two it is.
Two hour it is.
Quarter four it is.
Half ten it is.
Three-quarter six it is.
At how much hour? When?
at half five
after quarter eight with ten minutes
Ten oclock/hour has passed.
In five minutes its three.
-

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STATING A DATE
Lets see a comparison now! The example is: 25th February, 1992 or February 25th 1992
1.
2.
3.
4.
1.
2.
3.
4.

You can state a date by


You can state a date by
You can state a date by
You can state a date by

writing
writing
writing
writing

1992. februr 25.


1992. feb. 25.
1992. 02. 25.
1992. II. 25.

out the month.


the abbreviation of the month.
everything with numbers.
the month with Roman letters, but its rarely used!

All members of a date are followed by a dot. Exceptions are month completely written out!
And the most important thing of all: Hungarian goes from the bigger unit to the smaller
unit.
YEAR

+ MONTH + DAY

If I want to say in 1992, use the suffixes -ban, -ben with a hyphen:
1992-ben, 2008-ban
Use the suffixes -n, -n with a hyphen if you want to say for example: 2005. mjus 5.-n.
2005. mjus 5-n sszehzasodunk. Well get married on 5th May, 2005.
Dates are said like this:
1995. 01. 06.
1995. 01. 06-n

ezerkilencszzkilencvent janur hatodika


ezerkilencszzkilencvent janur hatodikn

Furthermore, theres a little trouble with the number ONE. If you say 1st May, you have to use the
word: elseje, elsejn.
1st May
on 1st May

mjus elseje
mjus elsejn

Note that the Hungarian word ra has different aspects in English: hour, clock, watch.
Everything is ra in Hungarian!
Words for ra:
karra
fali ra
villanyra
vzra
gzra
It also means class, lesson:

wrist watch
wall-clock
electricity meter
water-meter
gas-meter

Htkor rm van. I have class at seven.


rn vagyok.
Im in class.

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202

Other examples:
Ma 2005. jnius 16. htf van.
Hnyadika van ma?
Mikor?
Melyik vben? 1990-ben.
mjusban
1990 mjusban
Mettl meddig? Htftl szombatig.
Mennyi ideig? Hat napig.
Mita? 1990 ta.
Mita? 2 hete.

Today is Monday 16th June, 2005.


What is the date today? What date is it today?
When?
(In) which year? In 1990.
in May
in May, 1990
For how long? From Monday to Saturday.
(for) How long? For six days.
Since when? Since 1990.
How long? For 2 weeks.

NOTE! Hungarian says 1995 as: a thousand-ninehundred-ninety-five. We dont use the


English method: nineteen ninetyfive!

CENTURY
Hungarian equivalent: szzad or vszzad.
A 16. szzad (tizenhatodik)
The 16th century
A 20. szzad (huszadik)
The 20th century
A 21. szzad (huszonegyedik) The 21st century

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203

ADVERBS OF MANNER
Hungarian adverbs of manner have a crucial part in expressing mood, condition answering the
question How? = Hogy?
But first lets see another case in connection with a purpose or a reason. The base for that
could be the question word Why? whose equivalent is Mirt? That is, the question word Mi?
takes the suffix -rt whose meaning is the same as the preposition for.
In a word, the Hungarian question words are: Mirt? Why? AND Kirt? For whom?
If you want to say that somebody does something for a purpose or a reason, then do this.
1.

-Mirt vagy itt?


-Azrt vagyok itt, hogy beszljek veled.

-Why are you here?


-Im here to talk to you.

2.

-Mirt vagy itt?


-Azrt vagyok itt, mert beszlni akarok veled.

-Why are you here?


-Im here because I want to talk to you.

So the question Mirt? can be answered with a sentence explaining the purpose or the reason.
Attention! In Hungarian, sometimes theres an ANTECEDENT at the beginning of the
sentence (in this case: Azrt). This phenomenon does not exist in English. The first sentence
literally is:
Im here (for the purpose) so that I talk to you.
While the second one:
Im here (for the reason) that I want to talk to you.
Summary:
1. Purpose Clause
2. Reason Clause
Question: Mirt?
Why?
Mirt?
Why?
Answer:
Azrthogy (in order) to Azrtmert because

SETTLE DOWN TO DINNER


Other things that might cause difficulty are expressions like settle down to dinner. Hungarian
says kr or krl. See the examples!
A csald az asztal krl l. The family have settled down to dinner.
A csald az asztal kr l. The family settles down to dinner.
Literally: The family is sitting around the table. The family sits down around the table.
Of course, you have to take the direction in consideration. Krl for position, kr for direction,
towards something. And watch the verbs is sitting, sits down. English needs different verbs
because around has one form.

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THE SUFFIX -RT IN DETAILS


The same rules are valid for it as for the other suffixes. It is simply attached to a word and if that
word ends in a or e, then those vowels become , (alma-almrt, gereblye-gereblyrt).

It also has personal forms: rtem, rted, rte, rtnk, rtetek, rtk (for me, for
you, etc.). And the polite forms are: nrt, magrt, nkrt, magukrt

It can be intensified: nrtem, terted, rte, etc.

The forms for the polite forms are intensified in the speech: nrt, magrt

Not to be confused with the verb rt, that is understand!


(Azt) rtem.
I understand (that).
(Ezt) rtem tetted? You did (this) for me?

THE DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS EZ, AZ


Like always az, ez can take this suffix.
azrt for that
ezrt for this

HOGY?
The English equivalent is: How?

ATTENTION! How? corresponds with the Hungarian word only if you express
mode, condition, NEVER PROPERTY OR QUALITY. Of course, there are
exceptions:
How was your day? Milyen napod volt?

If the question word How? requires a specific quality as answer, one says: Milyen?

Examples for Hogy?:


Hogy vagy?
How are you?
Hogy jttl ide?
How did you come here?
Hogy megy a munka? How is your work going?

Theres a longer version of this word: Hogyan? No difference between the two forms,
but the short version is more in use.

The answers to the question could be: jl fine; gyalog on foot; lassan slowly.
These words are adverbs of manner. The possibilities to form them are quite a few!
Besides, there are adverbs of manner representing this part of the speech by
themselves (gyalog). Standard English adverbs of manner are formed from adjectives
with the ending -ly: happily, mainly, and so on

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GROUP 1: -LAG, -LEG

These suffixes are attached mostly to words in , , , .

Adjectives formed with the suffix -i take -lag, -leg, too.


lltlag
ellenkezleg
valsznleg
bartilag
eredetileg

allegedly
on the contrary
probably
in a friendly way
originally

But that doesnt mean that other words must not take them:
arnylag relatively
tnyleg really
vgleg
definitely

Adjectives with these suffixes must not be compared at superlative degree!

GROUP 2: -N, -AN, -EN, -ON


These are the general forms to form adverbs of manner.

Adjectives formed with the suffixes -s, -os, -es, -s always take these
suffixes! Sometimes, words that end in , , , take -n (kesern), but these forms
sound a bit antiquated. Besides, other words can take them, too. Not to be
confused with the suffixes of surface -n, -on, -en, -n!
haragos
fnyes
gyors
vastag
olcs
drga
boldog

testy
bright
quick
thick
cheap
expensive
happy

haragosan
fnyesen
gyorsan
vastagon
olcsn
drgn
boldogan

testily
brightly
quickly
thick
at a low price
at a high price
happily

Apparently, also English has its own forms now and then which cant be translated in the same
way.

There are exceptions going through a change while transformed into adverbs of
manner. These words end in , .
lass
slow
lassan
slowly
knny light/easy knnyen easily
szrny terrible
szrnyen terribly

Attention! The adjective nagy means big, the adverb nagyon means very.
 nagyon =
nagy =
big
very
nagy hz = big house  nagyon nagy hz = very big house

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Krem szpen!
The adverb of manner szpen formed from the adjective szp is used in situations
when English omits it or expresses it in a different way.
Krem szpen!
Please!
Thank you very much!
Ksznm szpen!
Ezt most szpen megeszed! Youll eat it up now, will you!

GROUP 3: -L, -UL, -L

These suffixes are attached to languages and adjectives with the privative
suffixes -talan, -telen, -atlan, -etlen and some other adjectives.
bizonytalanul
kelletlenl
magyarul
olaszul
angolul
nmetl
jl
rosszul

vaguely
reluctantly
in Hungarian
in Italian
in English
in German
well, right
badly, wrong

Hungarian well and badly are not irregular! More examples for all three groups:
pldul
vgl
felesgl megy valakihez
vendgl lt
segtsgl hv
hrl ad
Jl beszl magyarul.
Rosszul tanul.
Beszlek olaszul.

for example
in the end
marry him (go to him as wife)
to entertain sy at ones table
to invoke
to report, to send a word
He speaks Hungarian well.
Hes bad at school.
I speak Italian.

No confusion here please!


vgleg
vgl
a vgn
Vgre!

definitely
in the end
at the end
At last!

-NKNT
If you return to the adverbs of time, youll see weve already met this suffix. In that case, it was
distributive temporal case: something happens over and over again at a specific interval. We are
talking about distribution now, as well! This case is: DISTRIBUTIVE . For pronknt theres
another version: prosval.
fejenknt (per head)
egyenknt (one by one)

kilnknt (a kilo)
pronknt (in pairs, two and two)

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-KNT, -KPP, -KPPEN; MINT


Used to form adverbs of manner from adjectives. The suffixes -nknt and -knt are not the
same! The word mint is the only preposition in Hungarian! The suffixes -kpp, -kppen can be
interchanged even if not always.
ktflekpp(en)
hasonlkppen
tulajdonkppen
nknt
Tanrknt dolgozik./Mint tanr dolgozik.

In two different ways


similarly
properly speaking
voluntarily
He works as teacher.

This case is called MODAL CASE .

-VAL, -VEL
These can be used to express manner.
kettesvel
hrmasval
szzval
ezrvel

two at a time
three at a time
hundreds of
thousands of

-STUL, -STL
This case is COMITATIVE . In a proper sense, it has the same meaning as -val, -vel, but it is used to
express a stronger relationship!
csaldostul
mindenestl
szrstl-brstl
Ruhstul llt a zuhany alatt.

with ones entire family


with everything, root and branch
flesh and fell
He was standing under the shower with clothes on him.

-BAN, -BEN
Surprising as it is, these suffixes of place referring to occurrences inside an object, also reflect a
state of mind. Words combined with -ban, -ben often take the possessive endings, as well! They
can be translated with the preposition: with.
rmben sr.
Bnatban a tba ugrott.
Fjdalmukban vltenek.
J/rossz sznben van.

Shes crying with joy.


Sad as he was, he jumped in the lake.
They shout with pain.
to look well/ill

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NLKL

If you want to do without something, thats the right postposition for it.
Eserny nlkl nem megyek el. Im not leaving without an umbrella.
Cukor nlkl isszk a kvt.
They drink coffee without sugar.
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:
enlkl without this, anlkl without that
HELYETT

It replaces something with something: instead of.


Cip helyett plt vesznk.
Instead of shoes, well buy a shirt.
Helyetted nem tudok dnteni. I cant make this decision for you.
Helyette vgzem el a munkt. Im doing this job for him/instead of him.
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:
ehelyett instead of this, ahelyett instead of that
SZERINT

If you want to refer to other peoples opinion: according to, to think, to say
Az igazgat szerint nincs pnz.
The director says we have no money.
Szerinted megy ma dolgozni?
Do you think hes going to work today?
A trvny szerint itt tilos a dohnyzs. According to the law, no smoking is allowed here.
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:
eszerint according to this, aszerint according to that
LTAL

This postposition is used if something is done by somebody. English equivalent: by.


A titkrsg ltal kldtt levl megrkezett. The letter sent by the secretariat has arrived.
It takes the possessive endings if it refers specifically to the person who did something.
Az ltala mondott trtnet igaz. The story told by him is true.
The demonstrative pronoun az, ez change like this:
ezltal through this, azltal through that

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ELLEN

This is a deceitful postposition. Lets see why!


The word itself ellen means: against
A dntse ellen nem tehetnk semmit. We cant do anything against his decision.
Nincs ellene kifogsom.
I have nothing against it.
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:
ez ellen against this, az ellen against that
If it takes the suffix -ben plus possessive ending, it has the meaning: in return for
Megfelel szolgltats ellenben fizetek. Ill pay in return for appropriate service.
nyugta ellenben
against a receipt
kszpnzfizets ellenben
cash down
If it takes the suffix -re, it means: notwithstanding, in spite of sg
A tntets ellenre nyugodt nap ez a mai. Despite the strike, it is a calm day.
A bizonytalansgom ellenre elboldogulok. In spite of my uncertainty, Im getting on well.
akaratom ellenre
against my will
No confusion here!
ellen(e)
against
ellenben in return for
ellenre
in spite of
MIATT, VGETT

Justifying something goes with these postpositions: because of. The postposition vgett is
almost completely extinct.
Az es miatt bent lnk a hzban.
Miattam trtnt a baleset.
Emiatt nem ltom a meccset.
Az irat vgett jttem.

Because its raining, were sitting in the house.


The accident is my fault.
Thats why/Therefore I wont see the game.
Ive come for the document.

The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:


emiatt, evgett for this, amiatt, avgett for that
VM/VK IRNT

If Im interested in something or someone, I say irnt which comes from irny (direction).
Equivalent: towards.
Nem rzek irnta semmit. I dont feel anything for her.
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this: ez irnt for this, az irnt for that
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VKINEK A JAVRA

If something happens for someones sake, that is: in favour of.


4:0 a magyarok javra
four up for the Hungarian team
A javamra rt ezer forintot. He credited me a thousand forints.
a vendgek javra
in favour of the guests
The demonstrative pronouns az, ez change like this:
ennek a javra in favour of this, annak a javra in favour of that
VK/VM SZMRA, RSZRE

These postpositions are equal to the suffix -rt: for, to


Ill book a table for them.
Foglalok asztalt rszkre.
Szmunkra ez nem jelent semmit. To us, it doesnt mean anything.
VMI(NEK A) FEJBEN

This postposition corresponds with ellenben: nyugta fejben against a receipt


VMI ALAPJN

Meaning: on the basis of sg, based on sg, by


A lny klseje alapjn tli meg.
He judges the girl by the look.
rabr alapjn fizetnek.
Im paid by the hour.
Az alapjn, amit mondott, nem a hibs. Based on what he said, its not his fault.
VMI NYOMN

It is something like a stilted postposition for saying: based on. Mainly used when youre talking
about somebodys work, book, and so on:
Gene Roddenberry Star Trek-e nyomn based on Gene Roddenberrys Star Trek
VM(NEK A), VK(NEK A) RVN

It means: through sy/sg, by way of, by means of


A szakcs rvn megtudtuk, mennyi s
kell a levesbe.

Through the cook we learned how much salt you


need to put in the soup.

VMRE NZVE

This postposition is equal to: in point of, by


Foglalkozsra nzve erdsz. By profession hes a forester.
Ez kedvez rnk nzve.
This is favourable to us.
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VMT BELERTVE

/ ELTEKINTVE VMTL

These two words can be translated as: including sg / apart from sg


Belertve tged is, hrman vagyunk itt. Including you, there are three of us here.
A szobtl eltekintve tetszik a hely.
Apart from the room, I like the place.
AMI VMT ILLETI

Equivalent: as for; as far as sg/sy is concerned, regarding sy/sg


Ami engem illet, nem rdekel.
Ami a bevsrlst illeti, tl sok pnzt
kltttetek.

As far as Im concerned, I dont care.


As for the shopping, youve spent too much
money.

VMNL FOGVA

Equivalent: by, by virtue of, by dint of; therefore


Nem jtt el, ennl fogva nem tud
levizsgzni.
gyessgnl fogva mindenre kpes.

Hes not here, therefore he wont be able to pass the


exam.
By her skills shes capable of everything.

VM(NEK A) KAPCSN

Equivalent: apropos of, in connection with, as for


Az gy kapcsn eszbe jutott ms is. As for the issue, she remembered other things, too.
VM(NEK AZ), VK(NEK AZ) RDEKBEN

Equivalent: for the sake of; in sys interest


Im saying this in your own interest.
A te rdekedben mondom.
Pter rdekben tartom a szm. Ill keep my mouth shut for Peters sake.

SUMMARY TABLE
SUFFIXES, POSTPOSITIONS
-VAL, -VEL
-NKNT
-KPP, -KPPEN, -KNT
-STUL, -STL

CASE
instrumental
distributive
modal
comitative

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT
with
per, in, by in
as, -ly
with

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NUMERALS
CARDINAL NUMBERS
Number 0 can be said as: nulla or zr. You can just say nulla whenever this number comes up.
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

egy
kett
hrom
ngy
t
hat
ht
nyolc
kilenc
tz

11
12
13
14
15
20
21
22
23
24

tizenegy
tizenkett
tizenhrom
tizenngy
tizent
hsz
huszonegy
huszonkett
huszonhrom
huszonngy

30
35
40
45
50
59
60
61
70
78

harminc
harminct
negyven
negyvent
tven
tvenkilenc
hatvan
hatvanegy
hetven
hetvennyolc

80
82
90
95
100
101
137
200
300
1000

nyolcvan
nyolcvankett
kilencven
kilencvent
szz
szzegy
szzharmincht
ktszz
hromszz
ezer

Above 10 you form the numbers like this: tizen + t = tizent, etc.
tizenhuszonharmincnegyventvenhatvanhetvennyolcvankilencven-

-teen
twentythirtyfortyfiftysixtyseventyeightyninety-

Be careful with these numbers: tz, hsz, hrom, ngy, ht. Hrom is a drop-vowel word! The
rest become short when above 10: tizen, huszon, harminc, negyven, hetven.
Lets see the numbers above 1000!
1001
1996
2000
3000
100000
123567
200000
300000

ezeregy
ezerkilencszzkilencvenhat
ktezer
hromezer
szzezer
szzhuszonhromezertszzhatvanht
ktszzezer
hromszzezer

10000
10024
20000
30000
1000000
1400000
2000000
3000000

tzezer
tzezerhuszonngy
hszezer
harmincezer
egymilli
egymillingyszzezer
ktmilli
hrommilli

Kt + ezer = ktezer; tz + ezer = tzezer; szz + ezer = szzezer; egy + milli = egymilli
Question words for cardinal numbers: Hny? Mennyi?
Besides, the number 2 has two different forms: kett, kt-. Kett is used as the usual
number. As you see kt- is something like a prefix and it is also used in adjectival sense.
hatvankett
sixty-two
hatvankt ember sixty-two peple
ktezer
two thousand
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213

However, kt is often understood ht because of their similarity in everyday language. In this case
kett can be used when kt- should be: hatvankett ember, kettezer.

ORDINAL NUMBERS
Ordinal numbers specifiy where something, somebody belongs to. English adds th to form these
numbers. Hungarian has the suffix ik for that purpose when writing numbers in words.
However, when numbers are written in figures, the number is just followed by a dot.

HUNGARIAN ENGLISH
tdik
fifth
5.
5th
0. is said like this: nulladik
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

els
msodik
harmadik
negyedik
tdik
hatodik
hetedik
nyolcadik
kilencedik
tizedik

11.
12.
13.
14.
20.
21.
30.
40.
50.
100.

tizenegyedik
tizenkettedik
tizenharmadik
tizennegyedik
huszadik
huszonegyedik
harmincadik
negyvenedik
tvenedik
szzadik

Be careful!
egy
kett
hrom
ngy
ht
tz

=
=
=
=
=
=

els
msodik
harmadik
negyedik
hetedik
tizedik








NOT egyedik!
NOT kettedik!
Drop-vowel word!
becomes short e!
becomes short e!
long becomes short i!

Higher numbers: ezer ezredik (drop-vowel word!); milli milliomodik; sokadik umpteenth
You surely realized the suffix -ik is preceded by a link vowel + d consonant. Well, it is due to
the fact that Hungarian ordinal numbers are formed from fractions (See fractions below!). So
basically, we could say that the suffixes for ordinal numbers are: -ADIK, -ODIK, -EDIK, -DIK
Question word: Hnyadik?
Hnyadik lettl az autversenyben? What place did you get in the car race?
Hnyadikba jrsz?
Which class are you attending?
The question hnyadik is not to be confused with hnyadk meaning icky, barf-out!

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214

FRACTIONS
Fractions are numbers expressing a specific part of the whole. Hungarian fractions are formed
with the suffix -d which can have a link vowel if needed. So the suffixes in details are:

-AD, -OD, -ED, -D


/1
/2
/3
/4
/5
/6

egyed
ketted
harmad
negyed
td
hatod

/7
/8
/9
/10
/100
/1000

heted
nyolcad
kilenced
tized
szzad
ezred

Again, watch these numbers:


hrom
ngy
ht
tz
ezer

harmad
negyed
heted
tized
ezred

Examples:

2/3

6/9
stb.

egy ketted
kt harmad
hrom negyed
hat kilenced
stb.

one and a half


two-third
three-quarter
six-ninth
etc.

Question words: Hnyad? Hnyad rsze?

DISTRIBUTIVE NUMBERS
Hungarian distributive numbers are expressed with the suffix: -VAL, -VEL OR -NKNT . If youre all
for cases, the suffix -nknt is DISTRIBUTIVE CASE . Question word: Hnyasval?
egyesvel
kettesvel
szzval
ezrvel

one by one
two at a time
hundreds of
thousands of

Hrmasval vehettek az ebdbl. You can take from the lunch three at a time.
Ezrvel tiltakoztak az emberek.
Thousands of people were protesting.

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215

MULTIPLICATIVE NUMBERS
Hungarian multiplicative numbers are formed with the suffixes: -SZOR, -SZER,- SZR . English
equivalent: times.
Question word: Hnyszor? Milyen gyakran? How many times? How often?
egyszer
ktszer
hromszor
ngyszer
sokszor
kevsszer
Ha csak egyszer rtenm, amit mondasz!
Ktszer mentem a piacra.
Tzszer mondtam el neki, hogy figyeljen oda!
Mr sokadszor figyelmeztettelek.

once
twice
three times
four times
many times
a few times
If I understood what you say just once!
I went to the market twice.
Ive told him ten times to listen!
Ive warned you many times.

NUMBERS WITH -OS, -ES, -S


Hungarian numbers can take the suffixes -OS, -ES, -S .
Question word: Hnyas? What number?
-Hnyast kaptl? Kettest.
-What mark did you get? D.
A hrmas szm versenyz gyztt. The winner is contestant no. 3.

Distributive numbers can only be formed after fitting numbers with -os, -es, -s:
ngyesvel.

Multiplicative numbers can be extended with these suffixes, giving numbers an


adjectival sense or used to refer to a number itself:
hatszoros gyztes
Hromszoros hurr a kirlynak!
ts lott
ts bankjegy
a kettes szm
a hetes szm
Krem, fradjon a nyolcas ablakhoz!

six time winner


Three hurrahs for the king!
Hungarian lottery with five numbers to hit
fiver
no. two
no. seven
Please go to window no. 8.

DECIMAL NUMBERS
Hungarian decimal numbers are written with a comma (vessz) instead of a point. When saying
them, you use the word egsz! Besides, you dont just say the numbers one after the other. You
have to refer them in a specific way.
1,9
egy egsz kilenctized
1.9
one point nine
3,56 hrom egsz tvenhatszzad
3.56 three point five six
8,123 nyolc egsz szzhuszonhromezred 8.123 eight point one two three
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216

MODAL VERBS
Before getting absorbed into far-fetched explanations, lets see the English modal verbs first!
Verbs like will and would are not listed here because you can see how to use them if you return to
Future Tense and Conditional.
PAST
can
could, could have
able to
was able to
was unable to
unable to
capable of
was capable of
incapable of
was incapable of
might, might have
may
might
have to
had to
must
must not
was necessary
necessary
need (dont need) needed, (didnt need)
need (neednt)
needed, (neednt)
should
should have

FUTURE

PRESENT

will be able to
will be unable to
will be capable of
will be incapable of
will be allowed to
will have to
will be necessary
will need
will need
-

The verbs might have and could have are equal to: maybe/perhaps + past tense
He might have returned home. Maybe he returned home.
He could have returned home. Perhaps he returned home.
And what about Hungarian modal verbs? Here they are:
PRESENT
-hat, -het
tud
kpes vmre
kptelen vmre
szabad
kell
kellene
muszj
szksges
tilos

PAST
-hatott(a), -hetett(e)
tudott, tudta
kpes volt vmre
kptelen volt vmre
szabad volt
kellett
kellett volna
muszj volt
szksges volt
tilos volt

FUTURE
-hat(ja), -het(je) majd
fog tudni
kpes lesz vmre
kptelen lesz vmre
szabad lesz
kell majd
kellene majd
muszj lesz
szksges lesz
tilos lesz

The might have and could have constructions are said with maybe/perhaps, that is:

taln AND lehet, hogy


He might have returned home. Taln hazament.
He could have returned home. Lehet, hogy hazament.

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-HAT, -HET = MAY, CAN, TO BE ALLOWED TO


USE: -hat, -het expresse that somebody may / is allowed to do something or something
may be / is allowed to be done. It corresponds with the Englishmay much more thancan!
Formation:
VERB

3RD PS IDEFINITE CONJUGATION + -HAT/-HET +

INDEFINITE: Ltsz egy filmet.


Lthatsz egy filmet.
DEFINITE:

Ltod a filmet.
Lthatod a filmet.

INDEFINITE: Lttl egy filmet.


Lthattl egy filmet.
DEFINITE:

Lttad a filmet.
Lthattad a filmet.

PERSONAL SUFFIXES

PRESENT
You see a movie.
You may/can see a movie.
You see the movie.
You may/can see the movie.
PAST
You saw a movie.
You were allowed to see a movie.
You saw the movie.
You were allowed to see the movie.

FUTURE
INDEFINITE: Ltsz majd egy filmet.
You will see a movie.
Lthatsz majd egy filmet. You will be allowed to see a movie.
DEFINITE:

Ltod majd a filmet.


You will see the movie.
You will be allowed to see the movie.
Lthatod majd a filmet.
PRESENT CONDITIONAL
INDEFINITE: Ltnl egy filmet.
You would see a movie.
Lthatnl egy filmet.
You could see a movie.
DEFINITE:

Ltnd a filmet.
Lthatnd a filmet.

You would see the movie.


You could see the movie.

PAST CONDITIONAL
INDEFINITE: Lttl volna egy filmet.
You would have seen a movie.
Lthattl volna egy filmet. You could have seen a movie.
DEFINITE:

Lttad volna a filmet.


Lthattad volna filmet.

You would have seen the movie.


You could have seen the movie.

These suffixes are attached to a base verb and followed by the definite or indefinite
conjugation suffixes. Examples:
Bejhetek?
Lelhetek?
Megkrdezhetem?
Megtudhatom, mi folyik itt?
Jl van, elmehetsz.
Zongorzhatok.

May I come in?


May I take a seat?
May I ask?
Would you tell me whats going on here?
All right. You may leave.
I may play the piano. / Im allowed to play the piano.

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218

You can make such a question more polite if you say it in conditional mood:
May I come in?
Bejhetnk?
May I take a seat?
Lelhetnk?
Megtudhatnm? Would you tell me?
This sentence Megtudhatom? OR Megtudhatnm? literally means: May I know? OR Would I be
allowed to know?

TUD

Formation:
TUD

+ INFINITIVE
PRESENT

INDEFINITE: El tudunk olvasni mindent.


DEFINITE:
El tudjuk olvasni a knyvet.

We can read everything.


We can read the book.
PAST

INDEFINITE: El tudtunk olvasni mindent.


DEFINITE:
El tudtuk olvasni a knyvet.

We could read everything.


We could read the book.

FUTURE
INDEFINITE: El fogunk tudni olvasni mindent.
Well be able to read everything.
DEFINITE:
El fogjuk tudni olvasni a knyvet. Well be able to read the book.
PRESENT CONDITIONAL
INDEFINITE: El tudnnk olvasni mindent.
We could read everything (if)
DEFINITE:
El tudnnk olvasni a knyvet.
We could read the book (if)
PAST CODNITIONAL
INDEFINITE: El tudtunk volna olvasni mindent. We could have read everything (if)
DEFINITE:
El tudtuk volna olvasni a knyvet. We could have read the book (if)
The main verb elolvasni has a complete aspect to it. What you learned about Hungarian phrasal
verbs is also valid now. If a modal verb is inserted between the verbal prefix and its verb,
everything is written separately!
Theres no such thing: eltudom olvasni

The only correct writing is: el tudom olvasni

Meg tudom csinlni.


El tudjk mondani kvlrl.
Tudok zongorzni.
Hrom nyelven tudok beszlni.

I can do it.
They know it by heart.
I can play the piano.
I (can) speak three languages.

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Meg tud + verb is not to be confused with megtud = to get to know!!!


Meg tudtam rni a dolgozatot. I could write the test.
Megtudtam, hogy mgsem runk dolgozatot. I just learned we wouldnt write any test.

KPES/KPTELEN VMRE

= (UN)ABLE TO; (IN)CAPABLE OF

These adjectives are synonyms to tud, -hat, -het. There are two ways to use them:
KPES/KPTELEN

+ LENNI CONJUGATED + NOUN + SUFFIX -RA, -RE


OR
KPES/KPTELEN + LENNI CONJUGATED + VERB IN INFINITIVE FORM
Remember the predicative adjectives! It is about the same thing now. You dont use lenni
in 3rd PS and 3rd PP in present tense! The plural for these adjectives is:
kpesek, kptelenek

CONJUGATION Kpes megtenni.


IRRELEVANT:
Kptelen megtenni.

PRESENT
Hes able to do it.
Hes unable to do it.
PAST

CONJUGATION Kpes volt megtenni.


IRRELEVANT:
Kptelen volt megtenni.

He was able to do it.


He was unable to do it.
FUTURE

CONJUGATION Kpes lesz megtenni.


IRRELEVANT:
Kptelen lesz megtenni.

Hell be able to do it.


Hell be unable to do it.

PRESENT CONDITIONAL
CONJUGATION Kpes volna megtenni.
He would be able to do it.
IRRELEVANT:
Kptelen volna megtenni.
He would be unable to do it.

CONJUGATION
IRRELEVANT:

PAST CONDITIONAL
Kpes lett volna megtenni.
He would have been able to do it.
Kptelen lett volna megtenni. He would have been unable to do it.

Examples:
Kpes vagyok r.
Kptelen vagyok r.
Kpesek voltak hazudni!
Kptelenek voltunk megtenni.
Kpes volnl itt hagyni?

I can do that.
I cant do that.
They lied right to our faces!
We were incapable of that.
You would just leave me here?

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SZABAD

It is a verb that helps you say things like: to be unbound to do sg. However, most of the time
you just translate it as: may, to be allowed.
The word szabad as an adjective means free!
Formation:
SZABAD

+ INFINITIVE

As English doesnt really have a separate word for szabad, Ill use the expression: to be allowed to.

CONJUGATION Szabad nzni.


IRRELEVANT:
Nem szabad nzni.

PRESENT
Youre allowed to look.
Youre not allowed to look.

CONJUGATION Szabad volt nzni.


IRRELEVANT:
Nem volt szabad nzni.

PAST
You were allowed to look.
You were not allowed to look.

CONJUGATION Szabad lesz nzni.


IRRELEVANT:
Nem lesz szabad nzni.

FUTURE
Youll be allowed to look.
Youll be not allowed to look.

PRESENT CONDITIONAL
CONJUGATION Szabad volna nzni.
You would be allowed to look.
IRRELEVANT:
Nem volna szabad nzni.
You would not be allowed to look.

CONJUGATION
IRRELEVANT:

PAST CONDITIONAL
Szabad lett volna nzni.
You would have been allowed to look.
Nem lett volna szabad nzni. You would not have been allowed to look.

If you use szabad alone, it generally refers to everybody. If you talk about a specific person, you
need the dative pronouns or you can omit dative pronouns and conjugate the infinitive!
Neked szabad sznod.
You may swim / You are allowed to swim.
Neknk nem szabad engedly nlkl elmennnk.
Were not allowed to leave without permission.
Ht szabad ilyet mondani?
Its not a proper way to talk!
Szabad bejnnm?
May I come in?
Szabad (lenne) megkrdeznem
Would you mind my asking

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CONJUGATING THE INFINITIVE


DEEP-VOWEL: LTNI
-om
ltnom
-od
ltnod
ltnia
-ia
-unk
ltnunk
-(o)tok ltnotok
-iuk
ltniuk

HIGH VOWEL: NZNI, LNI


-em, -m
nznem
lnm
nzned
lnd
-ed, -d
nznie
lnie
-ie
-nk
nznnk lnnk
-(e)tek, -()tk nznetek lntk
-ik
nznik
lnik

The conjugation of the infinitive is the same for both indefinite and definite aspect!

KELL

= HAVE TO, MUST

If it takes the infinitive form, then it is a general reference to someone, something. If it


takes the infinitive with personal suffixes, it specifically refers to someone, something.
Formation:
This verb may require the dative pronouns, but it is not mandatory. It takes the main verb in its
infinitive form either with personal suffixes or not:
NEKEM + KELL

+ INFINITIVE VERB

PRESENT
CONJUGATION Ennyi munka utn enni kell.
IRRELEVANT:
Ennyi munka utn enned kell.

CONJUGATION
IRRELEVANT:

PAST
Ennyi munka utn enni kellett.
Ennyi munka utn enned kellett.

After so much work one has to eat.


After so much work you have to eat.

After so much work one had to eat.


After so much work you had to eat.

FUTURE
CONJUGATION Ennyi munka utn enni kell majd
After so much work one will have to eat.
IRRELEVANT:
Ennyi munka utn enned kell majd. After so much work you will have to eat.
See the difference? If theres a simple infinitive of the main verb, it refers to something
generally. With an infinitive conjugated, it refers to something/somebody specifically.
Other uses for kell:
Nem kellenek a fzetek.
Kell ez a toll?
Kellenek az iratok, de azonnal!
Nem kellesz nekem.
Kinek kell ez a sok pnz?
Mindenkinek kell egy kis sikerlmny.

I (you/he/we/they) dont need the notebooks.


Do you need this pen?
I need the documents right now!
I dont need you.
Who needs that much money?
Everyone needs to have a little success.

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KELLENE

This verb is the conditional form of kell. It expresses: should.


Present tense:
Past tense:
Future tense:

kellene (3rd PS)


kellett volna (3rd PS)
kellene majd (3rd PS)

kellennek (3rd PP)


kellettek volna (3rd PP)
kellennek majd (3rd PP)

The colloquial form is: kne. It can be heard more often in everyday conversations.
Examples:
El kellene mennnk szni.
El kellett volna mennnk szni.
Nem kne mr itt lennik?
Nem kellett volna mr ott lennik?
Majd a mzeumnl kellene lennnk hromra!

We should go swimming.
We should have gone swimming.
Shouldnt they be here by now?
Shouldnt they have been there by now?
We should be at the museum by three!

Other uses for kellene:


Nem kellennek a fzetek?
Kellene ez a toll?
Kellennek az iratok, de azonnal!
Ha gazdag lennl, se kellennl nekem.
Kinek kne ez a sok pnz?
Mindenkinek kellene egy kis sikerlmny.

Dont you need the notebooks?


Would you need this pen?
I would need the documents right now!
Even if you were rich, I wouldnt want you.
Who would want that much money?
Everyone should have a little success.

MUSZJ

Equivalent: must, have to. It expresses absolute necessity.


Present tense:
Past tense:
Future tense:
Present conditional:
Past conditional:

muszj
muszj
muszj
muszj
muszj

volt
lesz
volna/lenne
lett volna

Examples:
Muszj elmennnk szni.
Muszj volt elmennnk szni.
Muszj lesz elmennnk szni.
Muszj lenne elmennnk szni.
Muszj lett volna elmennnk szni.
Muszj meghvni ket?
Nem lett volna muszj kiablnod.
Muszj a mzeumban lennnk egyre!
-rd meg a leckdet! -Muszj?

We must go swimming.
We had to go swimming.
Well have to go swimming.
It would be a must for us to go swimming.
It wouldve been a must for us to go swimming.
Do we have to invite them?
It wasnt necessary to shout.
It is a must that we be at the museum by one oclock!
-Write your homework. -Do I have to?

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223

SZKSGES

Equivalent: necessary. It is more used in subordinate hogy-clauses, rather than with infinitives!
Szksges volt, hogy megtalljunk. It was necessary for us to find you.
Formation:
Present tense:
Past tense:
Future tense:
Present conditional:
Past conditional:

szksges
szksges
szksges
szksges
szksges

volt
lesz
volna/lenne
lett volna

Other use:
Szerzds(ek) is szksges(ek) hozz. A contract/contracts is/are needed to do it.
TILOS

Equivalent: must not, it is forbidden/prohibited to.


Present tense:
Past tense:
Future tense:
Present conditional:
Past conditional:
A fre lpni tilos!
Dohnyozni tilos!
Tilos tntetni a tren.
Nem tilos vlemnyt mondani.

tilos
tilos
tilos
tilos
tilos

volt
lesz
volna/lenne
lett volna

Keep off the grass.


No smoking.
Demonstrations are interdicted on the square.
It is not prohibited to tell your opinion.

Other words expressing some kind of interdict:


betilt vmt
kitilt vkt vhonnan
letiltja vknek a fizetst
tiltakozik vm ellen

to ban sg
to warn off sy from swhere
to stop ones payment
to protest against sg

LEHET

Equivalent: may, might, to be allowed, maybe. You can use it with hogy-clauses or infinitives.
Present:
Past:
Future:
Cond. present:
Cond. past:

lehet
lehetett
lehet majd
lehetne
lehetett volna

Lehet, hogy a strandra megyek.


Maybe Im going to the beach.
Akkoriban nem lehetett ilyesmit mondani.
At that time you werent allowed to say things like that.
Hogy lehetne elrni, hogy bkn hagyjon?
How can we get him to leave us alone?

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VERBAL NOUNS
INFINITIVE
You already know how to form the infinitive of a Hungarian verb: menni, ltni, fogni
Sometimes you need a link vowel, especially with verbs in two consonants: mondani, gyjteni
Now well deal with possibilities allowing us to use infinitive:

IMPERSONAL VERBS AND EXPRESSIONS


Impersonal verbs and expressions are to be followed by the infinitive of the main verb. Impersonal
verbs are: kell, kellene, szabad, lehet. Impersonal expressions are:
knny
nehz
ideje, hogy
pp ideje, hogy
j / rossz, hogy
jobb / rosszabb, hogy
tilos
szgyen
helyes
helytelen

easy
difficult
its time to
its high time to
its good / wrong to
its better / worse to
its forbidden to
its a shame to
its right to
its wrong to

Knny nyelveket tanulni.


Nehz nyelveket tanulni.
Ideje aludni.
pp ideje elmenni.
J magyarnak lenni.
Jobb gazdagnak lenni.
Tilos az llatokat etetni.
Szgyen ilyen ruhban kimenni.
Helyes eltlni a bnzket.
Helytelen eltlni az rtatlanokat.

Its
Its
Its
Its
Its
Its
Its
Its
Its
Its

easy to learn languages.


difficult to learn languages.
time to sleep.
high time to leave.
good to be Hungarian.
better to be rich.
forbidden to feed the animals.
a shame to go out in these clothes.
right to condemn criminals.
wrong to condemn the innocent.

SUBJECT
Futni egszsges.
To run is healthy.
Reggelizni nagyon fontos. To have breakfast is very important.

VERBS REQUIRING THE INFINITIVE OF PRBL, MEGY, JN


Megprblom elkerlni, hogy tallkozzak vele. Ill try to avoid meeting him.
Elmegynk focizni.
Were going play football.
Jttk teniszezni?
Will you come play tennis?

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225

PRESENT PARTICIPLE
English present participle is formed like this:
Hungarian present participle is formed like this:

singing, going, eating


nekl, jr, ev

Summary:

High-vowel: 3PS indefinite conjugation + -


Deep-vowel: 3PS indefinite conjugation + -
AS ADJECTIVE
helytll meglts
kiabl gyerek
szenved szerkezet
bejv hvs

appropriate observation
shouting child
passive voice
incoming call

Sometimes it is not possible to translate a present participle verb with -ing: helytll appropriate.

AS NOUN
A fut nagyon gyors.
The runner is very fast.
A bemond mindig ksik.
The announcer is always late.
A vev szntelenl panaszkodik. The customer keeps complaining.

REPLACING VERBS
kutyt brzol kp
a photo illustrating a dog

A kp, ami a kutyt brzolja


The photo that illustrates the dog

az iskolt ltogat dikok


the students attending the school

A dikok, akik az iskolt ltogatjk


The students who are attending the school

a krnyken lak emberek


the people living in the neighbourhood

Az emberek, akik a krnyken laknak


The people who live in the neighbourhood

a versenyben rsztvev jtkosok


the contestants joining the race

A jtkosok, akik a versenyben rszt vesznek


The contestants who join the race

NOTE!
You can make a present participle verb accusative, dative, plural and so on if needed.
Ltom a vevt.

I see the customer.

A tanulnak tst adok.

I give the student an A.

A ltogatkkal beszlgetnk.

Were talking to the visitors.

A lakk tele vannak gonddal.

The tenants have a lot of problems.

A rsztvevkben nem csaldtam.

I wasnt disappointed in the contestants.

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226

PAST PARTICIPLE
English past participle is formed like this:
Hungarian past participle is formed like this:

singed, seen, eaten


nekelt, ltott, evett

Summary:

High-vowel: 3PS indefinite conjugation + -t, -tt


Deep-vowel: 3PS indefinite conjugation + -t, -tt
+ plural suffix -k if needed + accusative suffix -t if needed
If you need a link vowel: -ett, -tt; -ott

AS ADJECTIVES
szmozott hzak
numbered houses
az tteremben megevett tel the food eaten in the restaurant
az rbe felltt rakta
the rocket launched in space
mlt id
past tense (literally: passed tense)

AS NOUNS
A meghvottak jl szrakoztak.
The invited were having a great time.
A ltottak alapjn nem lesz nnepls. From what I saw there will be no celebration.
A hallottakbl itlve kedveli Japnt.
Judging from what I heard he likes Japan.

REPLACING VERBS
A dikok ltal ltogatott iskola
The school attended by the students

Az iskola, amit a dikok ltogatnak


The school the students are attending

Az elad ltal eladott ruk


The goods sold by the shop assistant

Az ruk, amiket az elad eladott


The goods the shop-assistant have sold

FUTURE PARTICIPLE
The origins of this method reaches back to the old times of the Hungarian language. Originally, it
was used to express future acts, but during the centuries it had lost its true function. Nowadays
people use it when something is yet to be done. It has an adjectival or subjective function.
English equivalent: to be + past participle. Formation:

High-vowel 3PS indefinite conjugation + -end


Deep-vowel 3PS indefinite conjugation + -and
az elolvasand knyv
the book to be read
Mi a teend?
What is to be done?
Az r egy v utn kidoband. The goods are to be thrown away after a year.

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227

ADVERB FOR CONDITION


This is a typical Hungarian form of expressing a condition. It can be translated with past
participle, or the -ing ending. It expresses a mood, condition of some sort. Formation:

High-vowel van/vannak + 3PS indefinite conjugation + -ve


Deep-vowel van/vannak + 3PS indefinite conjugation + -va
Meg vagyok fzva.
A bolt nyitva/zrva van.
A dolog mg nincs elintzve.
Nevetve szaladt a bartaihoz.
Srva mondta el, mi trtnt vele.

I have a cold.
The shop is open/closed.
The matter hasnt been settled yet.
He was running up to his friends, laughing.
She told what happened to her crying.

Be careful! English would say The shop is closed, that is it uses past participle.

Dont use Hungarian past participle in such sentences!

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ASSIMILATION
Assimilation means that the last consonant of the first word is pronounced like the first
consonant of the following word.

Hungarian ortography is characterized by writing words with a suffix/ending in a


way that every element can be recognized immediately. That means writing
words as they sound separately. Examples:

mersz + sg = merszsg (intrepidity); fog + krm = fogkrm (tooth-paste)


In Hungarian its called szelemz rsmd, literally meaning:
WORD ANALYZING WRITING METHOD

This rule becomes important when we pronounce a word differently from how we
write it.
Examples:
rz + tuk = rztuk  pronounced as: rsztuk.
 The z becomes sz during speech.
mersz + sg = merszsg  pronounced as: merssg.
 The sz becomes s during speech.

Before you run out of the world with madness, think of assimilation as a linguistic tool allowing
you to say words so that your tongue doesnt break off. It helps you say words in a smooth
way.
Assimilation is typical to consonants, not vowels! To make it simple for you, here are the
cases when we can talk about assimilation.

UNMARKED ASSIMILATION
You should remember the consonants which can be voiced or unvoiced. Let me refresh your
memory:
b d dz dzs g gy v z zs
voiced
cs k ty f sz s
unvoiced p t c
Example: if a word ends in p and the suffix attached to it begins with b, then the p assimilates
with b verbally, but it is unmarked in its written form: kalap + ban = kalapban (in hat),
pronounced as: kalabban
and so on
Note that these are not rules you have to learn at all cost! If you can speak Hungarian to some
extent, itll be evident for your tongue.

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229

The n consonant becomes m before p, b and m while talking. Stays unmarked in its written
form. Examples:
azonban, pronounced as: azomban (however)
tanmese, pronounced as: tammese (fable)
lenpozdorja, pronounced as: lempozdorja (bun)
Sometimes two consonants running across with each other results in a third phoneme:
D+C=
GY + C =
T+C=

csaldcentrikus (family-centric)
Nagy cucc! (Big deal!)
sztcincl (to tear apart)
D + CS =
kardcsaps (sword beat)
GY + CS = ccs rongycsom (rag)
T+ CS =
sztcsszik (to slip apart)
D + GY =
ggy csaldgyarapods (family growth)
T + GY =
tgyalu (road plane)
SZ + S =
ss
merszsg (intrepidity)
Z+S=
gazsg (roguery)
S + SZ =
ssz vasszz (iron maiden)
rozsszer (like rye)
ZS + SZ =
S+Z=
zz
vaszr (iron lock)
ZS + Z =
Dzs Zoltn
vadszzskmny (prey)
SZ + ZS = zzs
Z + ZS =
tzzsonglr (fire juggler)
cc

If the consonant j is preceded by ny, ty, gy, l, t, d, n, the written form is unmarked, but
the pronunciation follows the rule of assimilation.
+J=
GY + J =
L+J=
N+J=
NY + J =
T+J=
TY + J =
D

gy
ggy
jj
nny
nny
ty
tty

kardja (his sword)


hagyja (he lets)
szeljk (we cut)
knja (his pain)
anyja (his mother)
ltja (he sees)
btyja (his older brother)

Other verbal assimilations unmarked in words:


D + SZ =
GY + SZ =
T + SZ =
D+S=
GY + S =
T+S=

hazudsz (you lie)


c, cc
hagysz (you let)
jtszik (he plays)
galdsg (perfidy)
cs, ccs agysrls (cerebral lesion)
levertsg (dejection)

Assimilation can also happen:


-

in imperative mood: fts, hajts, kelj, beszlj


with the demonstrative pronouns ez, az: evvel, avval, ezz, azz, eddig, addig

So much for assimilation.

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230

WORD FORMATION
Look up the words in a Hungarian-English dictionary. You should practise that, too after all!

NOUN FROM NOUN


-s, -sg, -sg
-s, -os, -es, -s
-sz, -sz
-n
-ka, -ke
-(o)cska, -(e)cske
-ka, -ke
-i, -csi
-us

nd, erd
lakat, veg
kert, jog
Horvth, Kiss
pici, madr
fl, l
Mari, Teri
Pter, Jnos
Anna

ndas, erdsg
lakatos, veges
kertsz, jogsz
Horvthn, Kissn
picike, madrka
flecske, lovacska
Marika, Terike
Peti, Jani
Annus

collective noun
profession
profession
Mrs.
diminutive
diminutive
nickname
nickname
nickname

szp, gyva

szpsg, gyvasg

collective noun

lakmrozik, emel

lakmrozs, emelet

(result o fan) action

szpsg, bartsg
haj, fej
faj, hely
szell, gy
kr
szem, alak
fel, ht
vros, Pcs
rs, tr
mese, cl
gymlcs
kutya
lapt, marok

szpsges, bartsgos
hajatlan, fejetlen
fajtalan, helytelen
szells, gyes
krtkony
szem, alak
fels, hts
vrosi, pcsi
rsbeli, trbeli
meseszer, idszer
gymlcsfle
kutyafajta
laptnyi, maroknyi

fitted with sg
the lack of sg
the lack of sg
fitted with sg
characteristic of a noun
having sg, fitted with sg
belonging to swhere
origin, characteristic
belonging to sg
it is like sg
similar to sg
similar to sg
measure

pesties, harcias

quality, characteristic

NOUN FROM ADJECTIVE


-sg, -sg

NOUN FROM VERB


-s, -s; -at, -et

ADJECTIVE FROM NOUN


-s, -os, -es, -s
-(a)tlan, -(e)tlen
-talan, -telen
-s, -as, -os, -es, -s
-kony, -keny
-, -, -j, -j
-s, -s
-i
-beli
-szer
-fle
-fajta
-nyi

ADJECTIVE FROM ADJECTIVE


-i + -s, -os, -es, -s

pesti, harci

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ADJECTIVE FROM VERB


-(a)tlan, -(e)tlen
-talan, -telen
-kony, keny
-atag, -eteg
-s, -s

enged, rt
sznik, un
vltozik, flt
pffeszkedik
kap, fl

engedetlen, rtatlan
szntelen, untalan
vltozkony, fltkeny
pffeteg
kaps, fls

the lack of sg
the lack of sg
characterizing an action
characterized by action
has an active sense to it

csnya, gyes
barti, elvi
j, nmet, rossz

csnyn, gyesen
bartilag, elvileg
jl, nmetl, rosszul

mode, condition
mode, condition
mode, condition

lt, nz
mos, ver
pt, ajnl
vonz
fenyeget
eszik, ll
hz, nevet
lk, csap
lp, csap
l, ll
mszik
mozog, forog
-

lttat, nzet
mosakodik, verekedik
ptkezik, ajnlkozik
vonzdik
fenyeget(d)zik
ehet, llhat
huzogat, nevetgl
lkds, csapdos
lpked, csapkod
ldgl, lldogl
mszkl
villan, zrren
szkell
suhint
mozdul, fordul
szdl

causative
reflexive
reflexive
reflexive
to be allowed to
frequentative
frequentative
frequentative
frequentative
frequentative
frequentative
momentary
momentary
momentary
momentary
inchoative

nv, hab
kertsz, jogsz
vadsz, eper
tan, bke
gncs, szk, bjt

nevez, habozik
verbs in z, -ik verbs
kertszkedik, jogszkodik -ik verbs
vadszik, eprszik
-ik verbs
tant, bkt
to get into action
gncsol, szkel, bjtl
to act somehow

ADVERB OF MODE FROM ADJECTIVE


-n, -on, -en, -n
-lag, -leg
-l, -ul, -l

VERB FROM VERB


-at, -et, -tat, -tet
-kodik, -kedik, -kdik
-kozik, -kezik, -kzik
-dik, -dik
-(d)zik, -(d)zik
-hat, -het
-gat, -get, -gl, -gl
-dos, -des, -ds
-kod, -ked, -kd
-dogl, -degl, -dgl
-l
-n, -an, -en
-ll
-int
-d, -dul, -dl
-l

VERB FROM NOUN


-oz(ik), -ez(ik), -z(ik)
kodik, -kedik, -kdik
-sz(ik), -sz(ik)
-t
-l, -ol, -el, -l

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232

VERB FROM ADJECTIVE


-oz(ik), -ez(ik), -z(ik)
kodik, -kedik, -kdik
-t
-l, -ol, -el, -l
-ll, -all, -ell

rzelgs
btor
kk, ronda
helyes
rossz

rzelgskdik
btorkodik
kkt, rondt
helyesel
rosszal

-ik verbs
-ik verbs
to make sg sg
to act somehow
to act somehow

egyezik
harmadol
sokall

-ik verbs
to make sg sg
to act somehow

tegez, magz

-ik verbs

harmad, tized
harmadik, tizedik

fraction
ordinal

VERB FROM NUMERAL


-oz(ik), -ez(ik), -z(ik) egy
-l, -ol, -el,- l
harmad
-ll, -all, -ell
sok

VERB FROM PRONOUN


-z

te, maga

NUMERAL FROM NUMERAL


-ad, -od, -ed, -d
-adik, -odik,-edik, -dik

hrom, tz
hrom, tz

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233

WORD ORDER
The Hungarian word order seems difficult to foreign studentswellbecause it is. Not from a strict
word order point of view, though.
While English has to put words in a specific order to express the right thing, Hungarian gives a
damn to Germanic sentence structure and could be rather parallelled with the Indo-European word
order. Dont take this Indo-European thing literally! Im just trying to say that the Hungarian
word order is way more free than anything you know. Yeah, thats what the topic-prominent
aspect gives you: Headache!
Lets get started with some basic rules about creating sentences. There are rules in spite of the
freedom for expressing yourself.

DIRECT WORD ORDER, YES OR NO


S = subject; V = verb; O = object; A = adverb

The usual formula for standard Hungarian sentences can be:


S+V+O or S+A+V or S+O+V
These possibilities include the topic-prominent aspect already. See some examples
for them:
Peter is watching tv.
S+V+O: Pter nzi a tvt.
S+O+V: Pter tvt nz.
Peter is watching tv.
S+A+V: Pter Londonba megy. Peter is going to London.

It would be quite difficult to explain the difference between the first two sentences. Actually, both
mean the same thing without emphasing anything. It is because tvt nz is an expression used
like you see it. However, if I say a tvt nzi, adding the definite article to it, thats an emphasis
on a tvt. Hes watching tv and not something else.
The third sentence could be rearranged like this:
Londonba megy Pter.
You see the subject goes to the end of the sentence! Now it is more important that Peter is
going specifically to London (not somewhere else), than the subject (Peter) itself.
You could put emphasis on the verb, too:
Megy Pter Londonba, nem szik.

Peter is going to London and not swimming!

DIRECT QUESTION?
That is correct. If you can form a valid Hungarian sentence in an indicative way, youve already
created the interrogative sentence, too. Hows that possible? Its simple. Hungarian does not
change word order for interrogative sentences. Expressing your will of asking or stating
something is indicated by your intonation. Intonation for questions wants the speakers to
rise their voice a little bit. Thats how we do it!
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234

S+V+O: -Pter nzi a tvt? Igen.


-Is Peter watching tv? Yes, he is.
S+O+V: -Pter tvt nz? Nem.
-Is Peter watching tv? No, he isnt.
S+A+V: -Pter Londonba megy? Taln. -Is Peter going to London? Maybe.
Its the same sentence structure. The difference in the writing is the question mark
replacing the period. For Hungarian people its all the same!

REARRANGING AND REARRANGING AND REARRANGING


Now lets create a longer sentence with adverbs and things like that, and see how many ways
there are to rearrange it in order to suit our need for emphasis. We wont go through all
possibilities. Thats impossible! English uses verbal stress on more important parts of the
sentence or theres another solution: it isthat I also indicate the words of primary and
secondary importance.
Az egr vidman futkos a padlson egsz nap.
The mouse is running happily on the loft all day.
Az egr a padlson futkos vidman egsz nap.
The mouse is running happily on the loft all day.
Az egr futkos a padlson vidman egsz nap.
The mouse is running happily on the loft all day.
Az egr egsz nap a padlson futkos vidman.
The mouse is running happily on the loft all day.
More rearranging:
Vidman futkos az egr a padlson egsz nap.
It is a happy way the mouse is running on the loft all day.
Egsz nap vidman futkos az egr a padlson.
It is all day that the mouse is running happily on the loft.
A padlson futkos vidman az egr egsz nap.
It is the loft where the mouse is running happily all day.
Futkos vidman az egr a padlson egsz nap.
It is running what the mouse is doing happily on the loft all day.
You see theres actually not much you can mess up in a Hungarian sentence. If you put a word
somewhere else, that alone doesnt make the sentence unintelligible. However, that doesnt mean
there are no rules. So far weve been talking about the topic prominent point of view, not rules.
And what are the rules? Basically, the same rules any other language has in a way or another.
These are rules you cant change under any condition!

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235

UNALTERABLE RULES

The definite/indefinite articles precede the noun:


a vaj
az iskola
egy lny

the butter
the school
a girl

The demonstrative pronouns ez, az are followed by the definite articles a, az in


constructions like:
ez a hz
az az ember

Adverbs of manner usually precede the verb they refer to:


Vidman futkos.
Kivlan nekel.

this house
that man

Its running happily.


Shes excellent at singing.

Adverbs of state/condition take a position at the beginning of the sentence:


Nyilvn nem jn.
sszessgben j gyerek.

The negative word nem precedes the word it refers to:


Nem tudom.
nem a knyvet olvassa.

me too/me neither

Accusative and dative pronouns follow the verb if unstressed:


Ltom t.
Adok neki.

I dont know
Hes not reading the book.

The conjunctions is, se follow the word they refer to:


n is/n se

Obviously he wont come.


All in all, hes a good child.

I see him.
I give him.

Accusative and dative pronouns precede the verb if stressed:


t ltom. I see him (not them).
Neki adok. I give him (not them).

Dative pronouns precede impersonal verbs and impersonal contructions (kell, szabad,
knny, lehetetlen), but are not mandatory to say:
(Nekem) fel kell kelnem.
(Neked) tilos oda menned.
(Nekik) knny hazudni.

I must get up.


You must not go over there.
Its easy for them to lie.

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QUESTION WITH A QUESTION WORD


If there is a question word, its easy to see we have to deal with a question . You dont even
necessarily need to rise your voice. The word order doesnt change.
-Mit fzl? Prkltet (fzk).

-What are you cooking? (Im cooking) stew.

-Mirt nem voltl a bulin?


-Mert beteg voltam.

Why werent you at the party?


Because I was ill.

Lets see these sentences without question words:


-Fzl? Igen, (fzk).

-Are you cooking? -Yes, I am.

-Nem voltl a bulin?


-Nem, (nem voltam).

Werent you at the party?


-No, I wasnt.

As you see, all you have to do is to put the question word at the beginning of the sentence.
Without a question word, it is a yes or no sentence.
If the question word is embedded in a sentence, English uses direct word order again! Hungarian
doesnt deal with this because there is no inversion for the sake of a question in the first
place.
Hny embert lttl a bankban?
How many people did you see in the bank?
Mondd el, hny embert lttl a bankban!
Tell me how many people you saw in the bank.

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237

NEGATION AND AFFIRMATION


English offers more possibilities depending on what you want your future wife to do: buzz off or
stay with you!
-Honey, did you buy a ring for me?
No, I didnt. / Yes, I did.
-Honey, are you aware of my mom coming tonight? No, Im not. / Yes, I am.
-Honey, have you picked up my mom yet?
No, I havent. / Yes, I have.
I wont write an example for all tenses. I guess you got my point. Lets just summarize the English
yes/no answers, alright? Heres a summary table:
YES
am / are / is
do / does / did
have / has / had
will / would
+ not =
can / could
may / might
should

NO
am not / arent / isnt
dont / doesnt / didnt
havent / hasnt / hadnt
wont / wouldnt
cant / couldnt
may not / might not
shouldnt

Hungarian yes and no is way simpler. You answer: yes or no . As opposed to English, it is not
impolite to just answer yes or no. But if you want, you can add the verb (rarely used) or the
verbal prefix (if theres one), but only with yes answers!
yes
no

=
=

igen
nem

-Drgm, vettl gyrt nekem?


Nem, (nem vettem). / Igen, (vettem).
-Drgm, tudod, hogy anym ma este jn? Nem, (nem tudom). / Igen, (tudom).
-Drgm, elhoztad anymat?
Nem, (nem hoztam el). / Igen, el.
About saying yes, its enough to know that much. About saying no, we have yet to learn a thing or
two.
NEM

Unlike English, Hungarian makes a wide use of double negation! But first lets see the use of
nem!
It can deny a whole sentence:
Nem tudom, mirt tette.

I see not why he did that.

It can deny a specific segment in a sentence:


Nem a fi cskolta meg a lnyt, hanem a lny a fit.
Not the boy kissed the girl, but the girl kissed the boy.

NEM PRECEDES THE WORD IT REFERS TO!


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238

The above-mentioned negations are single negations. Double negation is when two words
are used to express some kind of negation. Double negation in English would be:
I dont have no money.
But this Hungarian method is grammatically correct and must be used.
Semmit nem tudok.
I know nothing.

OR
OR

Nem tudok semmit.


I dont know anything.

Its all the same which solution you use. Again, topic prominent aspect. You think semmit is more
important? Then begin the sentence with it. Its not that important? Dont begin the sentence with
it.
NINCS

This negative word is used if something doesnt exist or something is not to be found
somewhere. It has a plural form: nincsenek. Equivalent:
there is no / there are no
there isnt any / there arent any
have no
For explanation, watch the examples:
Nincs hzam.
A trcm nincs a szken.
Nincsenek knyveink.
A fik nincsenek az osztlyban.

I have no house. / I dont have a house.


My wallet is not on the chair.
We have no books. We dont have any books.
The boys are not in the class.

Note that nincs, nincsenek is only irregular in present tense. The past tense is: nem volt, nem
voltak. The future tense is: nem lesz, nem lesznek.
Nem volt hzam.
A trcm nem lesz a szken.
Nem voltak knyveink.
A fik nem lesznek az osztlyban.

I had no house. / I didnt have a house.


My wallet will not be on the chair.
We had no books. We didnt have any books.
The boys wont be in the class.

Double negation is possible with nincs, too:


Nincs egy vasam se. I havent got a red cent. / Im broke.
Sometimes you can use single negation with sincs which is something like a combination of se
+ nincs!
Fogalmam sincs.
Mg tiszta zoknim sincs!

I have no idea.
I dont even have a pair of clean socks!

Nincs also expresses the English none:


-Van kerti trptek? Nincs.
-Van kerti trptek? Egy sincs.

-Do you have any garden gnomes? No, we have none.


-Do you have any garden gnomes? No, we have none.

egy sincs = none, not a single one


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239

NE

Its a negative word for imperative mood. Equivalent: dont.


Ne mondj ilyet!
Dont say such things!
Ne hagyjk a trcjukat a kocsiban, uraim! Dont leave your wallets in your cars, gentlemen!
Ne velem vlts, vlts az anyddal!
Dont shout with me. Shout with your mother!
Double negation again:
Ne csinlj semmit! Dont do anything!
SE, SEM

Equivalent: nor, neither, either. And double negation is a must in some cases:
I dont know, either.
n sem tudom.
Mg k se rtik!
Even they dont get it!
Semmit sem lttunk a tmegtl. We didnt see anything because of the crowd.
If you want to say neither, either, then sem, se stays a single negation. Another example:
A fene se tudja! The hell knows! (literally: Not even the hell knows!)
NEHOGY, HOGYNE

Equivalent: lest, so thatdont. You see you have two possibilities in Hungarian. These words
are used in sentences expressing a purpose!
Vigyl kabtot, nehogy megfzz! Take your jacket lest you catch a cold.
Vigyl kabtot, hogy meg ne fzz! Take your jacket so that you dont catch a cold.
Watch how theyre used. Nehogy is followed by full phrasal verbs, the verbal prefix stays
with its verb! However, hogyne gets phrasal verbs to split apart and verbal prefixes
to precede ne!
Use whichever you want to. One is heard as often as the other.
SOHA

Equivalent: never. Used with double negation only!


Soha nem bntottalak.
Ive never hurt you.
Soha semmit nem mondasz nekem. You never tell me anything.
-Hallottl valaha ilyenrl? -Soha.
-Have you ever heard about such a thing? -Never.

soha nem = sohasem


Sohasem bntottalak. Ive never hurt you.

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240

MEDLEY
GREETINGS
GENERAL GREETINGS: THE LONG VERSIONS HAVE THE VERB KVNOK J NAPOT KVNOK!, BUT IT
IS ENOUGH TO SAY THEM WITHOUT IT.
J
J
J
J

reggelt!
napot!
estt!
jszakt!

Good morning!
Good afternoon!
Good evening!
Good night!

SAYING HELLO: SZIA! FOR ONE PERSON, SZIASZTOK! FOR MORE THAN ONE PERSON, THE REST IS FOR
ONE PERSON OR MORE

INFORMAL

FORMAL

Szia! Sziasztok!
Hi! Hi guys! How do you do?

J napot!
Good afternoon! Good day!

dvzllek! dv!
Greetings! Welcome!

dvzlm!
Welcome!

Isten hozott!
Welcome!

Isten hozta!
Welcome!

SAYING GOOD-BYE: SZIA! AND SZIASZTOK! ALSO USED FOR SAYING GOOD-BYE.
INFORMAL

FORMAL

Szia! Sziasztok!
Bye! See you!

Viszontltsra!
Good-bye!

Isten veled!
Good-bye!

Isten nnel!
Good-bye!

Majd tallkozunk!
See you later!

A kzeli viszontltsra!
See you soon!

Majd mg ltjuk egymst!


See you later!

A mihamarabbi viszontltsra!
See you soon!

Holnap tallkozunk!
See you tomorrow!

A holnapi viszontltsra!
See you tomorrow!

Htfn tallkozunk!
See you on Monday.

Htfn tallkozunk!
See you on Monday.

Short form for the formal Viszonltsra is: Viszlt!


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241

THANK YOU:
INFORMAL

FORMAL

Ksz! Kszi!
Thanks!

Ksznm (szpen)!
Thank you (very much)!

Ezer ksznet!
Thank you so much!

Nagyon szpen / Hlsan ksznm!


Thank you very much indeed!

Ksz a segtsget!
Thanks for your help!

Ksznm a segtsgt!
Thank you for your help!

OTHER EXPRESSIONS:
kszn valakinek
elkszn valakitl
megkszn valakinek valamit
dvzl valakit
hla valaminek / valakinek

to say hello to sy, to greet sy


to say good-bye to sy
to thank sy for sg
to welcome sy, to greet sy
thanks to sy / sg

SLANG WORDS:
All these words can be used for saying hello and good-bye. English would say: Hi! See ya!
Cs!
P!
Cs!
Csk!
Szi!
Szika!
Csresz!
and so on...

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ASKING GENERAL STATE OF HEALTH:


INFORMAL

FORMAL

Hogy vagy?
How are you?

Hogy van?
How are you?

Hogy megy a sorod?


How are you getting on?

Hogy megy a sora?


How are you getting on?

Hogy rzed magad?


How do you feel?

Hogy rzi magt?


How do you feel?

Mi jsg?
Whats new?

Hogy llnak a dolgok?


How do matters stand?

Mizjs? Hogy ityeg?


Whats up? How is it hanging?

ANSWERING GENERAL STATE OF HEALTH:


INFORMAL

FORMAL

Ksz, jl.
Thanks, fine.

Ksznm, jl vagyok.
Thank you, Im fine.

Jl / Rosszul vagyok.
Im good / ill.

Jl / Rosszul rzem magam.


I feel good / unwell.

gy, ahogy. / Megvagyok.


So-so. / Im all right.

Nem panaszkodom.
Im not too bad.

Other answers:
Majd kicsattanok az egszsgtl.
Im bursting with health.
Fl lbbal a srban vagyok.
I have one foor in the grave.
Kutyul rzem magam.
Im under the weather.
Answer to: Mi jsg? Whats new?
Semmi klns.
Nothing special.
Semmi emltsre mlt.
Nothing to make a song about.
Semmi extra. (slang)
Nothing at all.
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243

WRITING A LETTER
The greeting and farewell are written with an exclamation mark in Hungarian.
INFORMAL GREETINGS

FORMAL GREETINGS

Kedves Pter!
Dear Peter,

Kedves Uram / Hlgyem!


Mr., / Ms., / Dear Sir,

Drga Anna!
Dear Ann,

(Igen) Tisztelt Uram / Hlgyem!


Dear Sir / Madam,

Tisztelt Cg!
Respectable Firm,

lelssel Pter!
Kind regards, Peter

dvzlettel!
My best regards, Peter

Sok csk Ptertl!


All my love, Peter

Szvlyes / Tiszteletteljes dvzlettel!


Yours sincerely / faithfully,

Szia!
Bye!

Tisztelettel!
Yours sincerely / faithfully / respectfully / truly,

Lets see an informal letter between two pals.


Kedves Gbor!
Megkaptam a leveled a legutbbi fejlemnyekrl.
Milyen remek hrek! Hadd gratulljak a vizsgdhoz,
s hogy mg ilyen rvid id alatt kt munkt is
talltl, elkpeszt.
Ha jl rtem, nem tudod eldnteni, hogy melyik
munkt vllald el. Nos, taln felsznesnek tartasz, de
szerintem azt, amelyikkel tbb pnzt keresel.
Mondtad, hogy hzat akarsz venni, radsul a
Katval is ssze akartok kltzni. Ez mind pnz,
gyhogy csapj le a zsrosabb llsra! Na j, mondjuk
az is szmt, hogy tetszik-e, amit csinlsz. Hiba
keresel egy raks pnzt, ha egsz nap rosszul rzed
magad a brdben a munkahelyeden. Krdezd meg a
Katt is! Neki taln jobb rvei vannak, mint nekem.
Br ha rm hallgatsz, veszel egy kisebb lakst.
Kezdetnek az is megteszi. Nem vrhatod el magadtl,
hogy mindjrt kastlyt tudj venni. Hely is csak
ketttknek kell, persze, hacsak nem tervezitek
mris, hogy csaldot alaptotok. Gondolom ahhoz a
temperamentumos bartndnek is lenne egy-kt
szava.
Na, most mr befejezem a flsleges szcsplst.
Remlem, azrt megfogadod nhny tancsomat.
Majd rd meg, hogy dntttl.
Szia, Pter!

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244

TIME
ra (hour)

perc (minute)

msodperc (second)

The noun ra is expressed with different words in English:


ra
ra

hour
watch, clock

(as unit of measurement)


(as a tool)

Other expressions: karra (wristwatch), falira (wall clock), gzra (gas-meter)

EXPRESSING TIME:

Dl / jfl van.
Its noon / midnight.

Ngy ra van.
Its four cclock.

Egy ra van.
Its one oclock.

Negyed t van.
Its quarter past four.

Kt ra van.
Its two oclock.

Fl t van.
Its half past four.

t ra van.
Its five oclock.

If youre talking to a friend or person close to you, you can omit ra: t van. Its five.
Radio and TV says exactly what the time is:
Tizenkt ra van.
Hat ra huszonht perc van.

Its twelve oclock.


Its six oclock and twenty-seven minutes.

English refers to a period of the day as:


However, Hungarian simply says:

Its seven a.m. / p.m.


Reggel / Este ht ra van.

a.m. = reggel OR if its really early in the morning (before six oclock), you can say hajnali
p.m. = este
Reggel nyolc ra van.
Hajnali ngy ra van.
Este tz ra van.

Its eight a.m.


Its four a.m.
Its ten p.m.

(Its eight in the morning.)


(Its four in the morning.)
(Its ten in the evening.)

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245

THERE IS, THERE ARE


The Hungarian equivalents to them are: VAN / VANNAK / NINCS / NINCSENEK
Their function is to express:
SOMETHING IS TO BE FOUND SOMEWHERE

OR
SOMETHING EXISTS/DOESNT EXIST

If it is about a location, usually theres an adverb of place in the sentence.


EXISTENCE / NON EXISTENCE:

IS TO BE FOUND / NOT TO BE FOUND:

Itt van egy hz.


Theres a house here.

A hz itt van.
The house is here.

Az asztalon knyvek vannak.


On the table there are some books.

A knyvek az asztalon vannak.


The books are on the table.

Ott nincsenek jsgok.


Theres no newspaper there.

Az jsgok nem ott vannak.


The newspapers arent there.

Van paradicsom a htben?


Is there some tomatoes in the fridge?

A htben van a paradicsom?


Is the tomato in the fridge?

Summary:
EXISTENCE / NON EXISTENCE:
IS TO BE FOUND / NOT TO BE FOUND:

van, vannak / nincs, nincsenek


van, vannak / nemvan, nemvannak

English also uses there is / there are when theres something / somebody doing something.
Hungarian doesnt need van, vannak, nincs, nincsenek to say such sentences.
Egy src focizik a parkban.
Theres a guy playing football in the park.

A src a parkban focizik.


The guy is playing football in the park.

Egy aut suhant t a keresztezdsen.


There was a car gliding over the junction.

Az aut tsuhant a keresztezdsen.


The car was gliding over the junction.

The literal Hungarian translation is:


A / The guy is playing football in the park.
A / The car was gliding over the junction.

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246

TO BE TO / SUPPOSED TO
The verb construction to be to is translated in Hungarian with these words:
kell OR gy volt, hogy OR kellett volna, de nem
Or the other possibility:
meg lehetett csinlni / nem lehetett megcsinlni
Youre to obey me.
Am I to tidy up my room?
I was to see the doctor.
I was to go and pick her up but I didnt.
Whats to be done?
It wasnt to be realized.

Engedelmeskedned kell nekem.


Ki kell takartanom a szobmat?
gy volt, hogy orvoshoz megyek.
rte kellett volna mennem, de nem tettem.
Mi a teend?
Nem volt kivitelezhet.

And supposed to is translated like this:


kell(ett volna) vmt tenni OR azt mondjk rla OR nem volna szabad
Im supposed to escort you.
Ill escort you just because Im supposed to.

Ktelessgem elksrni tged.


Elksrlek, de csak mert ez a feladatom.

Hes supposed to be a good cook.


Hes supposed to have been a good cook.
He was supposed to be a good cook.
He was supposed to have been a good cook.

lltlag j szakcs.
lltlag j szakcs volt.
Azt mondtk, hogy j szakcs.
Azt mondtk, hogy j szakcs volt.

Youre not supposed to know about it.

Nem volna szabad tudnod rla.

Marvin the Martian said: Wheres the kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering
kaboom.
Marvin a marslak azt mondta: Hol marad a robbans? Egy eget renget robbansnak kellett
volna lennie.

EATING AND DRINKING


reggeli
ebd, vacsora
tzraizik
uzsonnzik
ebdet fz

breakfast

reggelizik
lunch, dinner

ebdel, vacsorzik
to eat something between breakfast and lunch
to eat something between lunch and dinner
to cook (the) lunch

have breakfast
have lunch, dinner

tel (meal, food); ital (beverage); ks (knife); villa (fork); kanl (spoon)
Iszok egy cssze tet.
Megiszod mg azt a Klt?
Megettem a levest.
Felzablta a fasrtot!

Ill have a cup of tea.


Will you drink that Coke?
I ate the soup.
Hes gobbled up the meatball!

Note that the English word dish means two things in Hungarian: tl (bowl), fogs (meal).

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247

WEATHER
idjrs
nap
es
vihar
szl
h
jg
hvihar
szivrvny

weather
sun
rain
storm
wind
snow
ice
snow-storm, blizzard
rainbow

Milyen id van?
Esik az es.
Havazik. Drg. Villmlik.
Meleg van. Hideg van. Hvs van.
J id van.
Rossz id van.
Forrsg van.
Fagy van.
Szakad az es.
gy esik, mintha dzsbl ntenk.
St a nap.
Vihar kzeleg.
Bors az g.
Gondolod, esni fog?

Whats the weather like?


Its raining.
Its snowing / thundering / lightning.
Its hot / cold / chilly.
Its a fine / nice day.
The weather is bad. Its a rotten / foul weather.
Its a scorcher.
Its frosty.
Its pouring with rain.
Its raining cats and dogs.
The sun is shining.
Theres a storm coming.
Its cloudy.
Do you think it will rain?

AGE
letkor
Hny ves vagy?
20 ves vagyok.
egy 6 ves lny.
egy 5 ves kisfi.
a tizenvesek
aA harminc vesek
90 vesen / 90 ves korban
10 ves korra
Ugyanannyi ids, mint n.
4 vvel fiatalabb / idsebb nlam.
Korhoz kpest magas.
Nem ltszik a kora. Jl tartja magt.
Februrban tltm be a 23-at.
gy 60 ves lehet.

age
How old are you? What age are you?
Im 20 year old.
Shes a six-year-old girl. Shes a girl of 6.
Hes aged 5.
the teenagers
the thirty-year-olds
at the age of 90
by the time hes 10
Hes the same age as I am.
Shes 4 years younger / older than me.
Hes tall for his age.
She looks good for her age.
Im turning 23 in February.
He cant be more than 60. Hes about 60.

THE ONE WHO = AKI, AZ


The one who writes such things is pretty insane.
He who writes such things is pretty insane.
The person who writes such things is pretty insane.
The people who write such things are pretty insane.
Those who write such things are pretty insane.

Aki ilyet r, az nem egszen pelmj.


Aki ilyet r, az nem egszen pelmj.
Aki ilyet r, az nem egszen pelmj.
Aki ilyet r, az nem egszen pelmj.
Aki ilyet r, az nem egszen pelmj.

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248

CLOTHING
ruha (singular!)
ltzkds
jl ll vknek
j vkre, j a mrete
megy vmhez

clothes
clothing
to suit sy
to fit sy
to match sg

Jl ll neked a szoknya.
J rd a kalap.
A kalap megy a szoknyhoz.
A sznyeg megy a tapthoz.
felvesz
levesz
visel, hord

This skirt suits you.


The hat fits you.
The hat matches the skirt.
The carpet matches the wallpaper.

to put on
to take off
to wear, to have sg on
Felveszi a nadrgjt.
Felveszi a cipjt.
Felhzza a zoknijt.
Leveszi a nadrgjt.
Leveszi a kalapjt.
ltalban inget hord.
ppen inget hord.
Kabt van rajta.
Semmi nincs rajta.

He puts his trousers on.


He puts on his shoes. He gets into his shoes.
He pulls on his socks.
He takes off his trousers.
He takes off his hat.
He wears a shirt.
Hes wearing a shirt.
He has a coat on. Hes having a coat on.
He has nothing on.

WATCHING TV
tvnzs
televzi, tv
tvt nz
filmet nz a tvben
bekapcsolja a tvt, rdit
kikapcsolja a tvt, rdit
A rdi be van kapcsolva.
A rdi ki van kapcsolva.

watching tv
telivision (set and show), TV
to watch TV
to watch a film on TV
to turn the TV on; to switch the TV on
to turn the TV off; to switch the TV off
The radio is on.
The radio is off.

The verbs bekapcsol, kikapcsol, lekapcsol can be used with other things, too: oven, lamp

PURPOSE CLAUSE
English says: to, so as to, in order to, in order that, so that
Hungarian equivalent: azrt, hogy
Azrt nem megyek el, hogy ne lssam.
Azrt grcltem, hogy megvehessem a kocsit.
Kivasaltam az inget, hogy ne legyen gyrtt.
Azrt vltesz, hogy az idegeimre menj?

Im not going in order that I dont see her.


Ive been drudging in order to buy the car.
Ive ironed the shirt so that its not crumpled.
Are you shouting to get on my nerves?

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

249

LISTEN VS. HEAR


hall
hallgat vmt
hallgat vkre/vmre

to hear
to listen to sg
to listen to sy/sg

Zent hallgatok.
Hallgatjuk, ahogy a tcsk ciripel.
Ha mondanivald van, hallgatlak.
Hallom a zent.
Hallod, amit mondok?
Hallottad, mi trtnt?
Hallgass rm!

Im listening to music.
Were listening to the crickets chirping.
If you have something to say, Im listening.
I can hear the music.
Can you hear what Im saying?
Have you heard what happened?
Listen to me!

Extending the meaning with hall:


Hallottam, amikor megjttl.
Hallottam, hogy jssz.
Lttam, amikor megjttl.
Lttam, hogy jssz.

I
I
I
I

heard you coming.


heard you come.
saw you coming.
saw you come.

GETTING USED TO
hozzszokik valamihez
hozz van szokva valamihez
Az a szoksa, hogy
rszokik vmre
leszokik vmrl

get used to doing sg


be used to doing sg
be in the habit of doing sg, its a habit with him to
get into the habit of doing sg
give up doing sg, get out of the habit of doing sg

Hozzszoktam a reggeli kelshez.


Mr hozzszoktam.
Hozz van szokva, hogy rkig vrjon.
Hozz van szokva, hogy sokat egyen.
Leszoktam arrl, hogy lmomban beszljek.
Az a szoksom, hogy egy nap hat kvt
iszok.
Rszoktam arra, hogy fogat mossak.

I got used to getting up in the morning.


Ive already got used to it.
Hes used to waiting hours.
Shes used to eating a lot.
I gave up talking in my sleep.
Im in the habit of having six cups of coffee a
day.
I got into the habit of brushing my teeth.

The verb szokik itself has another function: usually, never or Present Tense. In this function, it
must be conjugated in past tense, but it expresses generalization.
Nem szoktam reggelizni.
Nem szoktak alkoholt inni.
Ktnaponta szoktam borotvlkozni.
Sokat szoktam tanulni.
Szoktl nha bulizni?
Strandra is szoktunk menni nyron.
Mikor szoktatok felkelni?

I never have breakfast.


They dont drink alcohol.
I shave every other day.
I usually study a lot.
Do you sometimes party?
We also go to the beach in summer.
When do you guys usually get up?

I know it looks strange, but all you need is a little practice. Remember when szokik expresses
generalization, it must be in past tense! It cant be always translated because English just
uses Present Tense many times.
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250

HAPPEN
English say: It happened to me. However, Hungarian likes the suffix -val, -vel, that is: with.
VALAMI TRTNIK VALAKIVEL SG HAPPENS TO SY

Ugyanaz trtnt velem is. The same thing happened to me.


The verb to happen is translated like this in the following case:
VLETLENL, ESETLEG, HA NETALNTN

Vletlenl sszefutottam a bartommal. I happened to run across with a friend of mine.


Ha esetleg tallkozol vele, dvzld!
If you happen to meet him, greet him.
gy trtnt, hogy leestem a sznpadrl. I happened to fall from the stage.

TO PREFER
jobban szeret
jobban szeret csinlni vmt vmnl/mint
Jobban
Jobban
Jobban
Jobban

to prefer, to like sg more


to prefer doing sg to doing sg

szeretek szni, mint selni.


szereti a kutyt, mint a verebet.
szerettek aludni, mint bulizni?
szeretnek enni, mint mosogatni.

I prefer swimming to skiing.


He prefers dogs to sparrows.
Do you prefer sleeping to partying?
They prefer eating to doing the dirty dish.

Other options:
inkbb csinlok vmt
inkbb te csinlj vmt
Inkbb, mint

would rather do sg, would sooner do sg


would rather sy + past participle
Ratherthan

Inkbb eszek / ennk.


Inkbb nem takartok.
Inkbb ecetben frdk, semhogy rd nzzek.
Inkbb meghalok.
Inkbb nevetsgesnek tartjk.

Id rather eat.
Id rather not tidy up.
Id sooner bathe in vinegar than looking
at you.
Id die first.
Hes rather considered to be ridiculous.

Inkbb egyl.
Inkbb ne takarts.
Menj inkbb villamossal.

Id rather you ate.


Id rather you didnt tidy up.
Id rather you went by tram.

Inkbb okos, mint ers.


Inkbb tvzik, mint tanul.
Inkbb elmegyek, semhogy hagyjam, hogy
megalzzanak.

Hes rather intelligent than strong.


Hes rather watching TV than learning.
Ill leave rather than letting them
humiliate me.

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251

TAG QUESTION, I WONDER


Examples for tag questions:
Youll come, wont you?
Youre not sleeping, are you?
Tag questions are translated with these words in Hungarian: ugye? igaz? j? nem? mi?
Tudsz hegedlni, ugye?
Szerelmes vagy belm, nem?
Szp vagyok, nem?
Nem iszol, ugye?
Menj aludni, j?
Egynk pizzt, j?

You can play the violin, cant you?


Youre in love with me, arent you?
Im beautiful, arent I?
You dont drink, do you?
Go to bed, will you?
Lets eat pizza, shall we?

When English uses the verb wonder or the conjunctions if, whether, Hungarian only uses two
words:
VAJON, -E

Nem tudom, el jn-e.


Nem tudjuk, hazudik-e.
Nem tudja, elmegy-e vagy sem.
Vajon eljn?
Vajon meg tudja csinlni?

Dont know if hes coming.


We dont know whether hes lying.
He doesnt know whether or not to go.
I wonder if hes coming.
Im wondering whether he can do it.

EMPHASIS ON THE SUBJECT


HUNGARIAN METHOD

ENGLISH METHOD
It is + subject + who + verb
Subject + conjugation of lenni + az(ok), aki(k) It is + subject + -ing
It is + subject + that

Te vagy az, aki mindig nyitva hagyja az ajtt.


Te hagyod mindig nyitva az ajtt.
Pter az, aki a konyhban eszik.
Pter eszik a konyhban.
dn volt az, aki megltott a zuhany alatt.
Te voltl az, akit dn megltott a zuhany
alatt.
A zuhany alatt ltott meg dn.

Its you who always leaves the door open.


Its you always leaving the door open.
Its Peter whos eating in the kitchen.
Its Peter eating in the kitchen.
It was dn who saw you under the shower.
It was you who dn saw under the shower.
It was under the shower that dn saw you.

English can put emphasis on sy/sg with: do. In this case, Hungarian uses different words to
translate it.
You do make a list.
De akkor is rsz egy listt!
I did jump from the bridge.
Tnyleg leugrottam a hdrl.
He does know what the answer is. De igenis tudja, hogy mi a megolds.

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252

WHAT! HOW!
Hungarian equivalent: Micsoda! Milyen!
The question word Milyen! can only be used with adjectives.
Micsoda kegyetlensg!
Micsoda szerencse!
Milyen j gondolat!
Milyen nagy!
Micsoda id!
Milyen szp lny, s milyen buta!
Milyen unalmas ilyen mondatokat rni!

What cruelty!
What luck!
What a good idea!
How big (it is)!
What weather!
What a beautiful girl and how stupid she is!
How boring it is to write such sentences!

POLITE ADDRESSES
Jjjn ide!

Come here!

Jjjn ide, krem!

Come here, please!

Idejnne, krem?

Could / would you come here, please?

Tegye meg azt a szvessget, hogy idejn! Would you do me a favour and come here?
Fradjon ide, krem!

Please come here!

Legyen olyan j s jjjn ide!

Be so kind as to come here!

Legyen olyan kedves, hogy idejn!

Would you mind coming here, please?

Legyen olyan kedves, hogy idejn!

Would you kindly come here?

ADVICE
Azt hiszem, be kne venned a gygyszert.
Szerintem, vedd meg azt a szemveget.
gy gondolom, orvoshoz kne menned.
Jobban tennd, ha nem feleselnl.
Azt tancsolom, maradj otthon.
Mirt nem msz a jtsztrre?
Mi lenne, ha elzizzennl?
Ha rm hallgatsz, itt maradsz.
Ha a helyedben lennk, meg is rlnk.
Nem kell mindjrt kiablni.
Azt javaslom, nzztek meg.
Azt javaslom, menjnk.
Tancsos lenne, ha nem vesztend el a
pnzt.

I think you should take your medicine.


In my opinion you should buy those glasses.
In my view you should see a doctor.
You had better not talk back.
I advise you to stay at home.
Why not go to the playground?
How about buzzing off?
If you listen to me, you stay here.
If I were you, I would get out of my mind.
Theres no need to shout.
I recommend you take a look at it.
I suggest going. I suggest that we should go.
Itd be advisable for you not to lose the
money.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

253

AS IF, AS THOUGH
Mintha a fellegekben jrna.
Mintha a fellegekben jrt volna.
Mintha tudnnk, hogy mirl beszltek.
gy tnik, hogy tmegyek a vizsgn.
gy tnik, hogy tmentem a vizsgn.
gy tnik, hogy tmegyek a vizsgn.
gy tnik, hogy tmentem a vizsgn.
gy nz ki, hogy haza megy
gy nz ki, hogy haza ment.
gy nzett ki, hogy haza megy.
gy nzett ki, hogy haza ment.
gy nz ki, hogy mindenki haza megy.
gy nz ki, hogy mindenki haza ment.
gy nzett ki, hogy mindenki haza megy.
gy nzett ki, hogy mindenki haza ment.

As if he had his head in the clouds.


As if he had had his head in the clouds.
As if we knew what youre talking about.
It looks as if I passed the exam.
It looks as if I had passed the exam.
It looks as though I passed the exam.
It looks as though I had passed the exam.
He seems to be going home.
He seems to have gone home.
He seemed to be going home.
He seemed to have gone home.
Looks like everyones going home.
Looks like everyone went home.
It looked like everyone was going home.
It looked like everyone had gone home.

PROVERBS AND LOCUTIONS


kzmonds (proverb)

szls (locution)

Amit ma megtehetsz, ne halaszd holnapra.


Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today.
Egy fecske nem csinl nyarat.
One swallow does not make a summer.
Egyszer hopp, mskor kopp. / Knnyen jtt, knnyen ment.
Easy come easy go.
Legyen vilgossg!
Let there be light!
Vigyorog, mint a fakutya.
Hes grinning like a Cheshire cat.
rtatlan, mint a ma szletett brny.
Hes as innocent as a newborn lamb.
Rszeg, mint a csap.
Hes as drunk as a newt.
Iszik, mint a kefekt.
He drinks like a fish.
Fizet, mint a kles.
He pays through the nose.
gy bnik vele, mint a hmes tojssal.
He handles it with kid gloves.
Leissza magt a srga fldig.
He gets as drunk as a lord.
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

254

Nesze semmi, fogd meg jl!


Its eyewash. Bunkum.
Jn mg a kutyra dr.
Your sin will find you!
Vrja, hogy a slt galamb a szjba repljn.
Hes expecting to have everything handed to him on a plate.

GENERALLY SPEAKING ABOUT PEOPLE


English offers these possibilities: one, you, we, they, people
Hungarian often uses this word in such a context: az ember, az emberek
But you can speak in 2nd PS or 1st PP, as well.
Az ember esend.

Were fallible.

Ha nem tanulsz, rfizetsz.

If you dont study, you come off a loser.

Jobban kellene trdni egymssal. One should take more care of each other.
Azt mondjk, elutazott.

They say hes left.

Az emberek kapzsik.

People are greedy.

If somebody/something is considered/thought/believed to be
Azt mondjk, hogy mogorva egy pasas. Hes said to be a grouch.
Azt hiszik, hogy meglte a nejt.

Hes believed to have killed his wife.

Watch the English and Hungarian sentences! How do the main and the subordinate clause
change?
Azt mondjk, hogy szereti a bartnjt.

Hes said to love his girlfriend.

Azt mondjk, hogy szerette a bartnjt.

Hes said to have loved his girlfriend.

Azt mondtk, hogy szereti a bartnjt.

He was said to love his girlfriend.

Azt mondtk, hogy szerette a bartnjt. He was said to have loved his girlfriend.

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255

NAMES
Hungarian names are said like this: Kovcs Jnos.
FAMILY NAME

+ GIVEN NAME

As if you said: Smith John.


Vocabulary: Whats your name Mi a neve(d)? Hogy hvnak/hvjk?
Addressing someone:
Uram!
Hlgyem! Asszonyom!
Kovcs r, fradjon a rendelbe!
Kovcsn, fradjon a rendelbe!
-

Sir!
Madam!
Mr. Smith, please go to the consulting room!
Mrs. Smith, please go to the consulting room!

Hlgyem (Ms.) is for younger, asszonyom (Mrs.) for elder/married women.


We use r even if you say Mr. or sir.
If a woman is somebodys wife and she took his name, you add -n to the family name.

By the way, look at this example with -n:


kirly
king
kirlyn queen regnant
kirlyn queen consort
N is a noun meaning woman, while -n is an ending indicating a womans married to a man
and she decided to take his family name, that is Mrs.

NATIONALITIES
There are some things you should remember as for how we say certain countries in Hungarian and
deduce the folk names from them.

Generally speaking European countries are fitted with the noun orszg meaning
country. Of course, not all of them. The rest of the countries have names you can
recognize easily.

If you want to refer to a folk, some countries and mostly cities take the -i suffix for
adjective formation. Compound words take -beli. Folk names are written in lowercase
(magyar, amerikai). European countries dont need these suffixes because the name of
the country is formed from a folk plus the noun orszg. Lets see the continents first:
CONTINENTS
Europe
European
America
American
African
Africa
Asia
Asian
Australia
Australian
North Pole arctic
South Pole antarctic

KONTINENSEK
Eurpa
eurpai
Amerika
amerikai
Afrika
afrikai
zsia
zsiai
Ausztrlia
ausztrliai
szaki-sark szaki-sarki
Dli-sark
dli-sarki

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256

POINTS OF THE COMPASS


north
northern
south
southern
eastern
east
western
west
north-east north-eastern
north-west north-western
south-east south-eastern
south-west south-western
etc.
etc.
COUNTRIES AND FOLKS
Hungary
Hungarian
Italy
Italian
Germany
German
Croatia
Croatian
Czech Republic Bohemian
Sweden
Swedish
Finland
Finn, Finnish
Spain
Spanish
Russia
Russian
Greece
Greek
Poland
Polish
Turkey
Turkish
Ireland
Irish
France
French
England
English/British
Portugal
Portuguese
Norway
Norwegian
Danmark
Dane
Austria
Austrian
Slovakia
Slovak
Rumania
Rumenian
Brazil
Brazil
India
Indian
Belgium
Belgian
China
Chinese
Japan
Japanese
United States
American
Mexico
Mexican
Canada
Canadian
Iraqi
Iraq
Iranian
Iran

A NGY GTJ
szak
szaki
dli
dl
keleti
kelet
nyugati
nyugat
szak-keleti
szak-kelet
szak-nyugat szak-nyugati
dl-kelet
dl-keleti
dl-nyugat
dl-nyugati
stb.
stb.

ORSZGOK S NPEK
Magyarorszg
Olaszorszg
Nmetorszg
Horvtorszg
Csehorszg
Svdorszg
Finnorszg
Spanyolorszg
Oroszorszg
Grgorszg
Lengyelorszg
Trkorszg
rorszg
Franciaorszg
Anglia or Nagy Britannia
Portuglia
Norvgia
Dnia
Ausztria
Szlovkia
Romnia
Brazlia
India
Belgium
Kna
Japn
Amerika/Egyeslt llamok
Mexik
Kanada
Irak
Irn

magyar
olasz
nmet
horvt
cseh
svd
finn
spanyol
orosz
grg
lengyel
trk
r
francia
angol/brit
portugl
norvg
dn
osztrk
szlovk
romn
brazil
indiai
belga
knai
japn
amerikai
mexiki
kanadai
iraki
irni

Instead of amerikai, you can also say: egyeslt-llamokbeli. But just use amerikai.

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CITIES AND INHABITANTS


(CAPITALS OF THE COUNTRIES ABOVE)
Budapest
Rome
Berlin
Zagreb
Prague
Stockholm
Helsinki
Madrid
Moscow
Athens
English often says
when referring to
Warsaw
Ankara
inhabitants in cities:
Dublin
people in Budapest
Paris
people in Paris
London
etc.
Lisbon
Oslo
Hungarian uses the
Copenhagen suffix -i in this case,
Vienna
too.
Bratislava
Bucharest
Braslia
New Delhi
Brussels
Beijing
Tokyo
Washington
Mexico City
Ottawa
Baghdad
Tehran

VROSOK S LAKOSAIK
(A FENTI ORSZGOK FVROSAI)
budapesti
Budapest
Rma
rmai
Berlin
berlini
Zgrb
zgrbi
Prga
prgai
Stockholm
stockholmi
Helsinki
helsinki
Madrid
madridi
Moszkva
moszkvai
Athn
athni
varsi
Vars
ankarai
Ankara
Dublin
dublini
Prizs
prizsi
londoni
London
Lisszabon
lisszaboni
osloi
Oslo
Koppenhga koppenhgai
Bcs
bcsi
pozsonyi
Pozsony
bukaresti
Bukarest
Brazliavros brazil
jdelhi lakos
jdelhi
brsszeli
Brsszel
pekingi
Peking
tokii
Toki
Washington washingtoni
Mexikvros mexikvrosbeli
Ottawa
ottawai
Bagdad
bagdadi
teherni
Tehern

The adjective form can refer to a folk in the plural or their language or simply used as an
adjective:
olasz
olasz tel
az olasz
az olaszok

Italian (as adjective)


Italian food
(the) Italian (language)
the Italian, Italian people

amerikai
amerikai tel
az angol
az amerikaiak

American (as adjective)


American food
(the) English (language)
American people

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258

HUNGARY
Hungary is divided into counties/regions called: megye (plural is megyk). The county town/seat
of a megye is: szkhely (literally: chair place). The capital (fvros) of Hungary is Budapest
divided into districts called: kerlet (plural is kerletek). Republic of Hungary (a Magyar
Kztrsasg) is led by the miniszterelnk (prime minister). The big boss in Hungarian cities is
the polgrmester (mayor). Below you can see a map of Hungary:
MEGYK
Baranya megye
Tolna megye
Fejr megye
Komrom-Esztergom megye
Somogy megye
Veszprm megye
Zala megye
Vas megye
Gyr-Moson-Sopron megye
Pest megye
Bcs-Kiskun megye
Csongrd megye
Jsz-Nagykun-Szolnok megye
Heves megye
Ngrd megye
Bks megye
Hajd-Bihar megye
Borsod-Abaj-Zempln megye
Szabolcs-Szatmr-Bereg megye

SZKHELYEK
Pcs
Szekszrd
Szkesfehrvr
Tatabnya
Kaposvr
Veszprm
Zalaegerszeg
Szombathely
Gyr
Budapest (Buda and Pest)
Kecskemt
Szeged
Szolnok
Eger
Salgtarjn
Bkscsaba
Debrecen
Miskolc
Nyregyhza

Other words:
vros
belvros, kzpont
klvros
vidk
tanya
tengerpart
tpart
utca
t
autplya
krt
tr
emlkm

city, town
downtown
periphery
countryside
homestead
seaside, beach
lakeside, shore
street
road
highway/motorway
avenue
square
monument

Fld
fld
kontinens, szrazfld
tenger
cen
t
foly
patak
domb
hegy
alfld
felfld
nemzetisg

Earth
earth, soil, land
continent
sea
ocean
lake
river
creek
hill
mountain
lowland
highland
nationality

The only explanation you need here is for: szrazfld. It literally means dryland. Both terms are
used. And heres a map of Hungary with the counties.

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259

MATH
ALAPMVELETEK
+
x
/

IGE
sszead
kivon
szoroz
oszt

1+1=2
20-6=14
2x2=4
10/2=5

FNV
sszeads
kivons
szorzs
oszts

(to add)
(to subtract)
(to multiply)
(to divide)

egy meg egy, az kett


hszbl hat, az tizenngy
ktszer kett, az ngy
tz osztva kettvel, az t

(addition)
(subtraction)
(multiplication)
(division)

+ meg
- -bl, -bl
x -szor, -szer, -szr
/ osztva -val, -vel

= is simply said with: az!


Other things to remember:
gyk
gykt von-bl, -bl
gykvons
hatvny
hatvnyra emel
hatvnyra emels

root
to extract the root of
extracting a root
power
to raise to power
raising to power

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EXERCISES
1. The nouns below are mixed, which means you should think of all types of nouns. Write the
plural, the accusative and the possessive form next to the examples. The required possessive form
must be 3rd person singular! Look up the English equivalent.
ENGLISH EQUIVALENT

NOUN

PLURAL FORM

ACCUSATIVE CASE POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

_______________

zsalu

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

villa

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

oll

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

epe

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

gesztenye

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

iskola

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

zseb

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

fegyver

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

redny

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

fl

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

varj

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

bty

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

vaj

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szr

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

lny

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

kert

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

nyl

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

esemny

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

takarmny _______________ _______________

_______________

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261

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT

NOUN

PLURAL FORM

ACCUSATIVE CASE POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

_______________

vll

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

vllalat

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

plet

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

csald

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

sznyeg

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

tl

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

asztal

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

rd

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

toll

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

nyugalom _______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

elem

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szl

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

np

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

nyl

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

torony

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

madr

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

tehn

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

kirly

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szndk

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

sk

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

dj

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szv

_______________ _______________

_______________

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262

ENGLISH EQUIVALENT

NOUN

PLURAL FORM

ACCUSATIVE CASE POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

_______________

mag

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

tet

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

bet

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

fi

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

frfi

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

ujj

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

vszzad

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

fnykp

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

pulver

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

motel

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

notesz

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

hardver

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

csepp

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

cspp

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

baj

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

fillr

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

kz

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

utca

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szmtgp _______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

monitor

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

szlogen

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

hang

_______________ _______________

_______________

_______________

meggy

_______________ _______________

_______________

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263

2. Write the Hungarian equivalent for the English examples below. It is a mixed task. Possessive
pronouns or possessive endings should be used where appropriate. Remember! There is no gender
distinction, therefore his and her are the same in Hungarian. Write the plural form where the
English plural is given. An example is given.
ENGLISH EXAMPLE

HUNGARIAN EQUIVALENT

his house

his houses

a(z ) hza

her time

____________________ ____________________

your (sing.)knowledge

____________________ ____________________

your (plur.) car

your cars

____________________ ____________________

their beliefe

____________________ ____________________

my life

____________________ ____________________

their lives

____________________ ____________________

our eyes

our eyes

____________________ ____________________

The house is yours. (plur.)

The houses are yours. ____________________ ____________________

The car is theirs.

The cars are theirs.

____________________ ____________________

The books are ours.

____________________ ____________________

Fire is our friend.

____________________ ____________________

a(z ) hzai

The flower is yours. (sing.) The flowers are yours. ____________________ ____________________
her arm

her arms

____________________ ____________________

my leg

my legs

____________________ ____________________

your (sing.) room

your rooms

____________________ ____________________

his girlfriend

his girlfriends

____________________ ____________________

her husband

her husbands

____________________ ____________________

Be careful!
Unlike English, Hungarian expresses body parts in singular form. We say: Szp a szeme.
(and NOT szpek a szemei, even if its grammatically correct).

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3. Find the right word order and write the plural, too. An example is given.
Singular: the womans handbag

Plural:

woman n, tska handbag a n(nek a) tskja

the color of the grass

color szn, grass f

_____________________

the wife of the man

wife felesg, man frfi

_____________________

cats hair

cat macska, hair szr

_____________________

the babys pacifier

baby baba, pacifier cumi

_____________________

the ships hull

ship haj, hull test

_____________________

beautys price

beauty szpsg, price r

_____________________

the petal of the flower

petal szirom, flower virg

_____________________

the womens handbags

a nk(nek a) tski

the colors of the grasses

_____________________

the wives of the men

_____________________

the hair of the cats

Look up the plural forms of


the words above if you dont
remember them!

_____________________

the pacifiers of the baby

_____________________

the hulls of the ships

_____________________

_____________________

the petals of the flowers

_____________________

4. These examples have more possessors. Write the Hungarian equivalent. An example is given.
Vocabulary:
lover szeret, man frfi, wife felesg, form forma, tree fa, leaf levl
recitation elszavals, poem vers, end vg, series sorozat, fifth episode tdik rsz
the lover of the mans wife

a frfi felesgnek a szeretje

the form of the trees leaf

_________________________________

the recitation of Sndor Petfis poem _________________________________


the end of the seriess fifth episode

_________________________________

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5. Translate the English sentences and choose the right word. An example is given.
Im holding her hand.

Fogom a kezt. (kezet, kezt)

Hes reading the book.

Olvassa a _________. (knyvet, knyvt)

Are you looking at the room?

A ________ nzed? (termet, termt)

They put the saddle on the horse.

A ________ a lra rakjk. (nyerget, nyergt)

Ive bought one of his photos.

Megvettem az egyik ________. (kpet, kpt)

Ive walked all over the Szchnyi Square. Vgigjrtam a Szchnyi __________. (teret, tert)
6. Translate the English sentences. Write everything out including dative pronouns. Sometimes
there is more than one solution due to the topic prominent aspect. An example is given.
Vocabulary:
dog kutya, nightmare rmlom, brown barna, hair haj, blue kk, eyes szem
daughter lnya, beautiful szp, name nv, money pnz, idea fogalom
I have a dog.

Nekem van egy kutym. / Nekem kutym van.

I had a nightmare.

______________________________________________

He has brown hair.

______________________________________________

She has blue eyes.

______________________________________________

They have a daughter.

______________________________________________

You (sing.) have a beautiful name. ______________________________________________


You (plur.) have no money.

______________________________________________

I have no idea.

______________________________________________

7. Attach the right suffix at end of the word: -nak, -nek. An example is given.
Minek?

For what?

Ki______?

For whom?

T______ ltszik.

It looks like a needle.

F______ fnak elmesli.

He tells everyone about that.

Ajndk l______ ne nzd a fogt. Beggars cannot be choosers.

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8. Write the plural of the adjectives and look up the words in a dictionary. An example is given.
szp

szpek

beautiful

knny

____________________ ____________________

nehz

____________________ ____________________

flnk

____________________ ____________________

vastag

____________________ ____________________

szk

____________________ ____________________

kicsi

____________________ ____________________

hatalmas ____________________ ____________________


meghat

____________________ ____________________

szabad

____________________ ____________________

gonosz

____________________ ____________________

ronda

____________________ ____________________

gyors

____________________ ____________________

lass

____________________ ____________________

9. Complete the sentences with the missing words. An example is given.


The car is longer than the bike.

Az aut hosszabb, mint a bicikli.

The boy is as tall as the girl.

A fi ___________ magas, mint a lny.

You are less intelligent than the others.

_____ vagy ________ okos, mint a tbbiek.

They are less educated than Alex.

___________ iskolzottak, mint Sanyi.

Justin is the bravest of all.

Justin a ____gyesebb mindkzl.

Susan is the least brave of all.

Susan a ____gyetlenebb mindkzl.

The exam is more important than the party.

A vizsga fontos____, mint a buli.

Cheese is less expensive than in the other store. A sajt olcs____, mint a msik boltban.

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10. Choose the right word. Use a dictionary if needed. An example is given.
sokkal, jval, elkpeszten, hihetetlenl, nagyon, nem annyira, igencsak, flelmetesen
Its very nice.

Nagyon szp.

Its a great deal bigger.

________ nagyobb.

Hes incredibly smart.

___________________ okos.

Shes not that playful.

________________ jtkos.

Hes much more of a brave man. ___________ btrabb.


Its highly delusive.

___________ megtveszt.

Its astonishingly fast.

___________________ gyors.

Its tremendously big.

___________________ nagy.

11. Find the right word order. Use the suffixes -tl, -tl according to vowel harmony where you
can. Use the Hungarian present participle -, - if needed. An example is given. Look up the words
in a dictionary. Help is given with colors.
street teeming with people

emberektl hemzseg utca

brown-eyed girl

________________________________

earth soaked with rain

________________________________

landscape covered with snow

________________________________

auditorium resounding with applause ________________________________

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12. Make the adjectives plural. Write according to topic prominent aspect where you think its
possible. An example is given.
The car is fast.
The cars are fast.

A kocsi gyors.
A kocsik gyorsak.

Gyors a kocsi.
Gyorsak a kocsik.

The ball is round.


The balls are round.

A labda __________.
A labdk ___________.

______________________.
______________________.

My computer is modern.
My computers are modern.

A szmtgpem _____________.
______________________.
A szmtgpeim _______________. ______________________.

The flat is spacious.


The flats are spacious.

A laks __________.
A laksok ___________.

______________________.
______________________.

The music is loud.


The musics are loud.

A zene __________.
A zenk ___________.

______________________.
______________________.

The soup is delicious.


The soups are delicious.

A leves __________.
A levesek __________.

______________________.
______________________.

His question is pointless.


A krdse __________________.
His questions are pointless. A krdsei __________________.

______________________.
______________________.

13. Make the adjectives any case needed. Brackets tell you which suffix you need. Two examples
are given. (Some sentences are constrained, but its about practising how to put adjectives in
different cases.)
Ill choose the green one.

A zldet vlasztom.

I thought of the bigger one.

A nagyobbra gondoltam.

Im standing on the narrower

A keskenyebb____________(-n, -on, -en, -n) llok.

I want the expensive one.

A drga____________(-t) akarom.

I saw a more comfortable one right there. Lttam ott egy knyelmesebb___________(-t).
Put the salt in the dry one.

A szraz________(-ba, -be) tedd a st!

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14. Complete the sentences with an indefinite numeral. Some of them need a suffix. Watch how
you conjugate verbs with these numerals. An example is given.
Mindent ltok.

I see everything.

__________ tanultam.

Ive learned a lot.

Nincs ott _________.

Theres nothing over there.

______________ csak szolgl!

There must be something it serves for!

___________ nem beszltem ma.

I havent talked to anyone today.

_____________ lehet.

He can be anywhere.

__________ ember van a buszon.

There are just a few people on the bus.

______________ vannak a buszon.

People are few in number on the bus.

A vrosban j ______ turista van.

There a great number of tourist downtown.

Nem mennek __________.

They arent going anywhere.

____________ mondhatja.

Anyone can say that.

______________ nem telefonlt.

She didnt call me for some reason.

____________ ksz voltam, csak erre nem. I was ready for everything but this.

15. Complete the sentences with the reflexive maga, maguk or the personal pronouns maga,
maguk, , k. Write in the blank lines if they are personal or reflexive. An example is given.
Maga megbzhat.

Personal

Youre trustworthy.

k _________ mondjk ezt.

_____________ _____________________

Tudnak __________ errl?

_____________ _____________________

Felhvja ________ra a figyelmet.

_____________ _____________________

Megnzik _______at a tkrben. _____________ _____________________

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16. Complete the sentences with the accusative and dative pronouns. Based on the English
sentences, choose the right word order for them. An example is given.
Tged kedvellek ___
____, nem t.

I like you, not him.

_________ megengedi _________, hogy elmenjnk.

She allows us to leave.

________ adom _________ a kulcsot, nem nekik.

I give you the key, not them.

_________ engedjk _________, hogy nekeljen.

We let her sing.

_________ engedjk _________, hogy nekeljen.

Its her we let sing.

_________ adjk klcsn __________ a kocsit.

Its me theyll lend the car.

_________ klcsn adjk __________ a kocsit.

They lend me the car.

_________ hvlak _________, nem a bartodat.

Ill call you, not your friend.

A tanraink nem ________ tiltjk meg ________, hogy


beszljnk.

Our teachers dont forbid us to


talk.

Nem _________ tiltjk meg __________, hogy beszljnk.

Its not us they forbid to talk.

17. Complete the sentences with the proper relative pronoun. Be careful! Some sentences require
a different pronoun from English. An example is given.
A fi, aki ott ll, helyes.

The boy (whos) standing over there, is


handsome.

A hely, ________ jrsz, nem biztonsgos.

The place (which) youre attending is not safe.

Csinlj, ________ akarsz!

Do what you want!

_________ megjssz, rj egy mlt!

When you arrive, write me an e-mail.

________ gyerek van, ott vidmsg is van.

Where theres a child, theres happiness, too.

A lny, _________ rgta ismerek, klfldre


ment.

The girl (who) Ive known for a long time, went


abroad.

Elgg rmens, ________ nem zavar.

Shes quite a go-getter, which doesnt bother me.

Nem tl szp vros, __________ jvk.

Its not a nice town where I come from.

A dal, _________ beszlek, vadi j.

The song (which) Im talking about is brand new.

A trgyals, _________ jvk, unalmas volt.

The conference (which) Im coming from was


boring.

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18. Complete the sentences with the proper suffix. An example is given.
A szobban alszik.

Hes sleeping in the room.

A killts____ megyek.

Im going to the exhibition.

A posta_____ szalad.

Shes rushing to the post office.

A bolt_____ jvnk.

Were coming from the store.

Egy lny________ szerelmes.

Hes in love with a girl.

rmm_______ ugrlok.

Im jumping around with joy.

A konyha_____ kt mterre van az ablak. The window is two meters from the kitchen.
Lekiabl az erkly_____.

He shouts from the balcony.

A Dvid_______ megyek hrom____.

Im going at Davids place by three.

A bank_____ kell csak stlnod.

You only have to walk up to the bank.

19. Complete the sentences with the proper suffix. An example is given.
-val, -kppen, -ente, -ig, -ral, -knt, -ostul
Mssal lttam stlni a parkban.

I saw her walk in the park with another person.

Ht_______ jr szni.

He goes swimming every week.

Csald________ megy nyaralni.

Shes going on vacation with her family.

A kapu______ rohantak, aztn elestek.

They ran up to the front door, then fell.

Minden________ be kell mennnk a


krhzba.

Well have to go to the hospital anyway.

Jegyrus_______ dolgozik.

He works as a ticket clerk.

Radr_______ nem lehet rni.

You cant write with an eraser.

Egy fi______ a karjaiban esett ki a


szekrnybl.

She fell out from the cupboard with a boy in her


arms.

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20. Complete the sentences with the proper demonstrative pronouns: ez, az. They might take a
suffix.
Ez az asztal ngyszgletes.

This table is square.

_______ kvfz elromlott.

That coffee machine is broken.

_______ gyalogosnak eltrt a lba.

That pedestrian has broken his leg.

Ltttok _________ filmnek a folytatst?

Did you see the sequel of that movie?

________ padra ne ljetek le!

Dont sit down on that bench!

________ hivatali pletig gyalogoltam.

I walked up to that office building.

Nem futottunk ssze _______ a rokonunkkal. We didnt run across with that relative of ours.
Na ________ fltem!

This is exactly what I was afraid of!

_________ kpest a te problmd apr.

Compared to this, your problem is nothing.

21. Complete the sentences with the proper demonstrative pronouns: itt, ott. Remember the
three directions. An example is given.
Itt vagyok.

Im here.

A tzolt _____ van.

The fireman is there.

Gyertek _____!

Come over here!

________ sokan kivndorolnak.

Many people migrate from there.

Tegyk le _____ a szekrnyt!

Put down the cupboard over here.

Ltod ezt a bankot? _______ fognak a bankrablk


kiszaladni.

You see this bank? The bankrobbers will run out


from here.

22. Complete the sentences with the proper demonstrative pronouns: ilyen, olyan. An example is
given.
Olyan motort vettek, ami ktszzzal
repeszt.

Theyve bought a motorbike which does twohundred.

_______ dolgokat n nem ismerek.

I dont know things like this.

__________ soha nem gondol.

He never thinks of things like this.

Mg letemben nem hallottam __________.

Never in my life have I heard of things like that.

__________ menj, aki rt a gygytshoz.

Go to someone who has some idea of healing.

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23. Complete the sentences with the proper interrogative pronouns. Remember the three
directions. An example is given.
Mi volna a j megolds?

What would be the right solution?

______ ismertek meg Madridban?

Who did they get acquainted with in Madrid?

________ vezetsz jogostvny nlkl?

Why are you driving without a drivers license?

_______ akarsz ezzel mondani?

What do you mean by that?

_________ rnk haza?

When will we get home?

_________ lny van az osztlyodban?

How many girls are there in your class?

_________ adtam a pnzed? Talld ki!

Who did I give your money? Figure it out!

_________ mondtam, hogy zrd el a vizet! How many times have I told you to turn off the tap?
_________ van az anyd?

How is your mother?

_________ utak vannak Angliba?

What are the roads like in England?

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24. Complete the sentences with the proper conjugation and put the present tense verbs in the
past tense. Use a dictionary if needed. An example is given.
I write a letter to my parents.

Levelet rok a szleimnek.

Levelet rtam a szleimnek.

I eat an apple for breakfast.

Reggelire almt ________.

_______________________________

Will you cook the dinner?

_____________ a vacsort?

_______________________________

Well plant a flower.

___________ egy virgot.

_______________________________

Well plant flowers.

Virgokat ___________.

_______________________________

Theyre washing their clothes.

A ruhjukat __________.

_______________________________

Will you drink that Coke?

__________ azt a klt mg?

_______________________________

Ill iron the shirt.

___________ az inget.

_______________________________

Theyre playing with the cat.

A macskval _____________.

_______________________________

The student is listening to the


teacher.

A tanul a tanrra ________.

_______________________________

They try everything.

Mindent _______________.

_______________________________

We cant see anything in this


fog.

Semmit se _________ a kdben.

_______________________________

Whatever you do, itll do just


fine.

Akrmit ________ (tesz) is, j


lesz!

_______________________________

Will you buy many clothes in


the store?

Sok ruht ________ (vesz) az


ruhzban?

_______________________________

25. Choose between majd or fog. If none of the solutions is possible, put an X on the line. Use a
dictionary if needed. An example is given.
MAJD

FOG

Ill do it.

_______ megcsinlom.

Meg ______ csinlni.

Will you give me that


pencil?

_______ odaadod azt a tollat?

Oda ______ adni azt a tollat?

Its going to rain tomorrow.

___
___ esik holnap.

Esni __fog_ holnap.

What are you going to do?

Mit csinlsz _________?

Mit _______ csinlni?

Theyre going to say they


quit.

________ azt mondjk, hogy


kilpnek.

Azt _______ mondani, hogy


kilpnek.

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26. Put the verbs in possible conditional mood and make them impossible. An example is given.
If the wind werent blowing, itd be hotter.

Ha nem fjna (fj) a szl, melegebb volna


(van).

If we did more exercises, wed be stronger.

Ha tbbet _________(tornzik), ersebbek


________(van).

If I got my salary, Id buy a car.

Ha _________(megkap) a fizetsem, kocsit


________(vesz).

If you (plur.) didnt sleep till nine, Id be surprised.

Ha nem ___________(alszik) kilencig,


________(meglepdik).

If they went skiing, the house would be empty for


a week.

Ha selni _________(megy), egy htig res


______(van) a hz.

If the wind hadnt been blowing, itd have been


hotter.

Ha nem fjt volna a szl, melegebb lett


volna.

If we had done more exercises, wed have been


stronger.

Ha tbbet ________________, ersebbek


_______________.

If I had got my salary, Id have bought a car.

Ha _______________ a fizetsem, kocsit


______________.

If you (plur.) hadnt slept till nine, Id have been


surprised.

Ha nem ________________ kilencig,


___________________.

If they had gone skiing, the house would have


been empty for a week.

Ha selni _______________, egy htig res


__________ a hz.

27. Choose between the Hungarian verbs. An example is given.


to show

mutat / muttat

to let go

elenged/ mentet

to make believe

elhiszet / elhitet

to make sy do

megcsinltat / megtettet

to pretend

tetet / tettet

to print

nyomtat / nyomat

to hear the lesson felelet / feleltet


to fail sy

megbuktat / megugrat

to feed

etet / teltet

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28. Choose the right postposition. Remember the three directions phenomenon. An example is
given.
Get away from the bench.

Gyere el a pad melll / mell.

After school Im going to football training.

Iskola ell / utn fociedzsre megyek.

Theres a piece of paper under the pen.

A toll al / alatt van egy lap.

Were playing outside in the park.

Kint / Kvl jtszunk a parkban.

The hotels are in front of the greengrocer.

A zldsgessel eltt / szemben vannak a


szllodk.

Well take back the clothes against receipt.

Nyugta ellenben / ellen visszavesszk a ruht.

There were no injuries during the game.

A meccs sorban / folyamn nem trtnt srls.

The lady says hes been misused by the


robber.

A hlgy szerint / alapjn a rabl bntalmazta is.

Im home every Friday.

Pntekenknt / Pntekente otthon vagyok.

I wouldnt go towards downtown in this


traffic.

A belvros fl / fel nem mennk ilyen


forgalomban.

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29. Write the proper personal forms of Hungarian postpositions based on the English
sentences. An example is given.
rtok, benne, velem, rajta, alattunk, kztem s kzted, rlatok, tlem, kznk, nla,
hozztok
He shifted the responsibility on you.

Rtok hrtotta a felelssget.

Are you coming to the cinema with me tonight?

Eljsz _________ moziba ma este?

Were walking on the bridge and theres a river


under us.

pp a hdon stlunk, __________ pedig egy


foly van.

Theres something to it.

Van ________ valami.

Ill tell you later what they told about you (plur.)

Majd elmeslem, mit mondtak _________.

He was going to be revenged on him.

_________ akart bosszt llni.

You wont get a dollar from me!

__________ nem kapsz egy vasat se!

Did she knocked at your (plur.) door, too?

___________ is bekopogott?

He always has a penknife with him.

Mindig _______ van a bicska.

Theyre going to choose between you and me.

____________________ fognak vlasztani.

The one who stands between us will be hit on the


head.

Aki ___________ ll, azt fejbe klintom.

30. Complete the sentences by choosing the right suffix. An example is given.
-ul, -ul, -ul, -an, -an, -an, -en, -leg, -en, -l
financially

pnzgyi_____

carefully

gondos______

regularly

szablyos_______

In Japanese japnul
beautifully

szp_______

badly

rossz_______

wrongly

helytelen______

properly

megfelel_____

quietly

nyugodt_____

sloppily

hanyag______

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31. Complete the sentences with the right conjunction. An example is given.
I cant play the guitar because my wrist is
broken.

Nem gitrozhatok, mert eltrt a csuklm.

My sons attending that nursery school, too.

A fiam _____ abba az vodba jr.

Until you dont behave yourself, youll get no icecream.

________ nem viselkedsz jl, nem kapsz fagyit.

Not even God knows whats the matter with him.

Az Isten ______ tudja, mi a baja.

As soon as she put her foot on the street, she


fainted.

_________ kilpett az utcra, eljult.

Though I dont know him, I dont like him.

_________ nem ismerem, nem kedvelem.

Theyve cut the tree without having permission


for it.

Kivgtk a ft _____________ lett volna r


engedlyk.

32. Match the English phrasal verbs with the Hungarian ones. Use a dictionary if needed. An
example is given.
felmegy
wwwwwwwwwww eavesdrop
kinz valahonnan
burst out shouting
megcsinl
condition
lenz valakit
rave
hazafut
bring out
megalszik
look out
lefekszik
turn sour
rl
bring to ruin
kihallgat
write down
go up
elkiablja magt
megbeszl
drop
ler
look down on sy
talakt
think over
flrebeszl
transform
sszeesik
do
odaad
interrupt
flbehagy
lay oneself down
visszabeszl
talk back
kzztesz
run home
tgondol
talk over
megszab
arise
tnkretesz
sit on
felmerl
give (away)
als
undermine

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33. Choose between the complete and the continous verb forms. An example is given.
Megrja / rja a levelet.

He writes the letter.

Megcsinlja / Csinlja a leckt.

Shes doing her homework.

Elrepl / Repl a glya.

The stork flies away.

Megtudjk / Tudjk a j hrt.

They learn the good news.

Elfutok / Futok a plyaudvarra.

Im running to the railway station.

Felszll / Szll a buszra.

He gets on the bus.

Elmondott / Mondott mindent.

She told me everything.

Megismerlek./Ismerlek.

I recognize you.

Az elads unalmas. Mindjrt elalszok /alszok rajta. The show is boring. Im about to fall asleep.
Megesik / Esik az ilyesmi.

Such things happen.

34. Choose the proper form of the following phrasal verbs. An example is given.
Elakarja / El akarja mondani.

She wants to tell me.

Mindig megszokott / meg szokott krdezni.

He usually asks my opinion.

Megvagyok / Meg vagyok dbbenve.

Im dumbfounded.

Megvan / Meg van a megfejts.

Weve got the solution.

Megkell / Meg kell nznem azt a filmet.

I must see that movie.

Nha leszokott / le szokott menni a parkba.

Now and then he goes down to the park.

Mr megszoktuk / meg szoktuk a trpusi klmt. Weve already got used to the tropic climate.
35. Answer only with the verbal prefix where possible.
Megitattad a csecsemt? Igen, _______.
Elintztk az gyet?

Nem, _______.

Felkelt mr?

Taln mr ________.

Kinyitnd az ablakot?

Nem, _________.

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36. Write the right form of the verbs in imperative mood. An example is given.
ad

2nd PS DEFINITE

add / adjad

fut

3rd PS INDEFINITE

________________

jtszik

3rd PP INDEFINITE

________________

megy

1st PS INDEFINITE

________________

jn

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

jn

3rd PS INDEFINITE

________________

alszik

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

lk

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

vr

3rd PS DEFINITE

________________

iszik

2nd PP DEFINITE

________________

ugrik

3rd PP INDEFINITE

________________

mond

3rd PP DEFINITE

________________

kel

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

hisz

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

tesz

2nd PS DEFINITE

________________

tesz

3rd PS DEFINITE

________________

lesz

1st PS INDEFINITE

________________

3rd PP INDEFINITE

________________

3rd PP DEFINITE

________________

van

2nd PS INDEFINITE

________________

3rd PS INDEFINITE

________________

hallgat

2nd PP INDEFINITE

________________

esik

1st PP INDEFINITE

________________

rak

1st PP DEFINITE

________________

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37. Choose between a conjugated or a simple infinitive. Use a dictionary if needed. An example is
given.
A Kirly utcban vgig lehet stlni / stlnod.
El kellene dnteni / dntened, mit akarsz.
k akartk kirgni / kirgniuk azt a knyvelt. Most bnhatjk.
Meg tudod csinlni / csinlnod a lefolyt vagy nem?
Rgen mg szabad volt beleugrani / beleugranunk a szkktba.
Rgen mg szabad volt neknk beleugrani / beleugranunk a szkktba.
Felttlenl szksges neked Sopronba utazni / utaznod?
Itt tilos meztelenl rohanglni / rohanglniuk.
Be szabad fradni / fradnom?
Hogyne lehetne lubickolni / lubickolnom a Balatonba!
38. Choose between an infinitive or a conjugated verb. Sometimes both solutions are correct. Use
a dictionary if needed. An example is given.
Valszn, hogy vonattal utazik / utazni.
Ideje felkelned / felkelni.
Lehetetlen ezt a munkt ilyen hamar elvgeznik / elvgezni.
Lehetetlen, hogy ne tudd / nem tudni, mikor van a szletsnapod.
Megtrtnhet, hogy nyersz / nyerni a lottn.
Tancsos lenne lejnnl / lejnni a snekrl.
J lenne, ha nem hisztiznl / nem hisztizni.
J lenne kirndulnom / kirndulni menni a hegyekbe.

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39. Translate the sentences in Hungarian. An example is given.


Vocabulary:
secretary titkrn, marry elvesz, to do a step tesz egy lpst
to be made kszl/ksztik, cake torta
to eat up megeszik, enterprise vllalat, to sell elad
The secretary was married by her boss two days
ago.

Kt nappal ezeltt a titkrnt elvette a


fnke.

One more step should be done.

________________________________________

Tokaj wine is made in Tokaj.

________________________________________

The cake has been eaten up.

________________________________________

The enterprises have been sold.

________________________________________

The enterprises were not sold.

________________________________________

40. Translate the sentences in English. An example is given.


Majd n elhzom a ntdat! mondta a heged a frsznek.
Ill give you what for!, the violin said to the saw.
Vrj csak! Megtantalak kesztybe dudlni! kiltotta a vnasszony a virgra pisil finak.
_______________________________________________________________________________
Megfjtk a bort! dbbent r a loptk.
_____________________________________
Tudod, mi az, hogy tisztelet? krdezte a tanr.
_________________________________________
Az, hogy diploms emberekhez lassan beszlnk, hogy rtsk, amit mondunk. vlaszolta a dik.
____________________________________________________________________________________

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41. Look up these words in a dictionary. Write the English equivalent next to them. An example is
given.
fej fej

head to milk

kel kell

to wake up to have to

nzet nzet

_________________ kz ksz

_________________

l l

_________________ mz msz

_________________

kvet kvet

_________________ rz rsz

_________________

tz tz

_________________ sk csk

_________________

tett tett

_________________ ok k

_________________

sz sz

_________________ gyjt gyjt _________________

szelet szelet

_________________ dl dl

_________________

kerts kerts _________________ szr szr

_________________

szv szv

_________________ s sz

_________________

l l

_________________ s sz

_________________

mer mer

_________________ hi fi

_________________

42. Choose the right adverb of time. An example is given.


rzed mg / mr a fjdalmat?

Can you still feel the pain?

Most mr / Azonnal nem rzem.

I cant feel it now.

Hamar / Mr kiteregettem a zoknikat.

Ive already hung out the socks.

Ksn / Mg mindig pincrkedik?

Is he still a waiter?

Mindjrt / Nemsokra kezddik a rajzfilm. The cartoon begins soon.


Megrkeztek mr / mg?

Have they arrived yet?

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43. Choose between Hogy? and Milyen?


__________ rted ezt?

What do you mean by that?

__________ j, hogy tallkoztunk!

Its so good we met!

__________ az frje?

Whats her husband like?

__________ mondjk magyarul azt, hogy bka? How do you say frog in Hungarian?
__________ szerencse!

What luck!

__________ lehet ilyet csinlni?

How can you do things like that?

__________ kr!

What a pity!

44. Some of these adjectives can be formed with one or both suffixes: -talan, -telen; -atlan, etlen. Put an X or a check sign to them. Look up the words in a dictionary. Two examples are
given.
bizonytalan  uncertain

bizonyatlan  ____
_____

gondtalan 

carefree

gondatlan 

szemtelen

________________ szemetlen

________________

rendtelen

________________ rendetlen

________________

laktalan

________________ lakatlan

________________

nyugtalan

________________ nyugatlan

________________

mveltelen

________________ mveletlen

________________

lettelen

________________ letetlen

________________

stalan

________________ stlan

________________

esztelen

________________ eszetlen

________________

knytelen

________________ knyetlen

________________

halhattalan

________________ halhatatlan

________________

careless

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45. Choose the right position of the words in brackets.


_______ te _______ a munkahelyedrl jsz?

(is)

Ne _________ piszklj _________! Piszkld a msik csapatot!

(minket)

Dolgoztak mr __________ beosztottal ___________.

(azzal a)

_________ odaadjtok _________ a brndt? Siet.

(neki)

______ n _______ pihentem. Reggel ta festem a hzfalat.

(mgse)

__________ kivittem ___________ a szemetet, de nem volt kedvem. (volna)


Sikerlt ________tkolnom __________ a kutyahzat.

(ssze)

______javtottk _______ a bringt?

(meg)

Alig ________ keltem_______, a kakas mr el is hallgatott.

(fel)

_______ meg _______ rtened, nem tehettem mst.

(kell)

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KEY
1.
NOUN

PLURAL FORM ACCUSATIVE CASE POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

zsalu

zsaluk

zsalut

zsaluja

tan

tank

tant

tanja

villa

villk

villt

villja

oll

ollk

ollt

ollja

epe

epk

ept

epje

gesztenye gesztenyk

gesztenyt

gesztenyje

iskola

iskolk

iskolt

iskolja

zseb

zsebek

zsebet

zsebe

fegyver

fegyverek

fegyvert

fegyvere

redny

rednyk

rednyt

rednye

fl

flek

flet

fle

kvek

kvet

kve

tavak

tavat

tava

varj

varjak

varjat

varja

bty

btyk

btyt

btyja

vaj

vajak

vajat

vaja

szr

szrak

szrat

szra

lny

lnyok

lnyt

lnya

kert

kertek

kertet

kertje

nyl

nyulak

nyulat

nyula

esemny

esemnyek

esemnyt

esemnye

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287

NOUN

PLURAL FORM ACCUSATIVE CASE POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

vll

vllak

vllat

vlla

vllalat

vllalatok

vllalatot

vllalata

plet

pletek

pletet

plete

csald

csaldok

csaldot

csaldja

sznyeg

sznyegek

sznyeget

sznyege

tl

tlak

tlat

tl(j)a

asztal

asztalok

asztalt

asztala

rd

rudak

rudat

rdja

toll

tollak

tollat

tolla

nyugalom

nyugalmak

nyugalmat

nyugalma

elem

elemek

elemet

eleme

szl

szelek

szelet

szele

np

npek

npet

npe

nyl

nyelek

nyelet

nyele

utak

utat

tja

torony (drop-vowel) tornyok

tornyot

tornya

madr

madarak

madarat

madara

tehn

tehenek

tehenet

tehene

kirly

kirlyok

kirlyt

kirlya

szndk

szndkok

szndkot

szndka

sk

skok

skot

skja

dj

djak

djat

dja

szv

szvek

szvet

szve

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

288

NOUN

PLURAL FORM

ACCUSATIVE CASE

POSSESSIVE CASE 3RD PS

mag

magok, magvak magot, magvat

magja, magva

tet

tetvek

tetvet

tetve

bet

betk

bett

betje

fi

fik

fit

fija, fia

frfi

frfiak

frfit

frfija

ujj

ujjak

ujjat

ujja

vszzad

vszzadok

vszzadot

vszzada

fnykp

fnykpek

fnykpet

fnykpe

pulver

pulverek

pulvert

pulver(j)e

motel

motelok

motelt

motel(j)e

notesz

noteszok

noteszt

notesze

hardver

hardverek

hardvert

hardver(j)e

csepp

cseppek

cseppet

cseppje

cspp

csppk

csppet/csppt csppje

baj

bajok

bajt

baja

fillr

fillrek

fillrt

fillr(j)e

kz

kezek

kezet

keze

utca

utck

utct

utcja

szmtgp szmtgpek

szmtgpet

szmtgpe

monitor

monitorok

monitort

monitora

szlogen

szlogenek

szlogent

szlogen(j)e

hang

hangok

hangot

hangja

meggy

meggyek

meggyet

meggye

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

289

2.
ENGLISH EXAMPLE

HUNGARIAN EQUIVALENT

his house

his houses

az hza

az hzai

her time

az ideje

your (sing.) knowledge

a te tudsod

your (plur.) car

your cars

a ti auttok

a ti autitok

their beliefe

az hitk

my life

az n letem

their lives

az letk

our eyes

our eyes

a mi szemnk

a mi szemeink

The house is yours. (plur.)

The houses are yours. A hz a tietek.

A hzak a tieitek.

The car is theirs.

The cars are theirs.

A kocsi az vk.

A kocsik az vik.

The books are ours.

A knyvek a mink. -

Fire is our friend.

A tz a bartunk.

The flower is yours. (sing.) The flowers are yours. A virg a tied.

A virgok a tieid.

her arm

her arms

az karja

az karjai

my leg

my legs

az n lbam

az n lbaim

your (sing.) room

your rooms

a te szobd

a te szobid

his girlfriend

his girlfriends

az bartnje

az bartni

her husband

her husbands

az frje

az frjei

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

290

3.
Singular: the womans handbag

Plural:

woman n, tska handbag a n(nek a) tskja

the color of the grass

color szn, grass f

a f(nek a) szne

the wife of the man

wife felesg, man frfi

a frfi(nak a) felesge

cats hair

cat macska, hair szr

a macska(nak a) szre

the babys pacifier

baby baba, pacifier cumi

a csecsem(nek a) cumija

the ships hull

ship haj, hull test

a haj(nak a) teste

beautys price

beauty szpsg, price r

a szpsg(nek az) ra

the petal of the flower

petal szirom, flower virg

a virg(nak a) szirma

the womens handbags

a nk(nek a) tski

the colors of the grasses

a fvek(nek a) sznei

the wives of the men

a frfiak(nak a) felesgei

the hair of the cats

Look up the plural forms of


the words above if you dont
remember them!

a macskk(nak a) szre

the pacifiers of the baby

a csecsemk(nek a) cumijai

the hulls of the ships

a hajk(nak a) testei

the petals of the flowers

a virgok(nak a) szirmai

4.
the lover of the mans wife

a frfi felesgnek a szeretje

the form of the trees leaf

a fa levelnek a formja

the recitation of Sndor Petfis poem Petfi Sndor versnek (az) elszavalsa
the end of the seriess fifth episode

a sorozat tdik rsznek (a) vge

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291

5.
Im holding her hand.

Fogom a kezt. (kezet, kezt)

Hes reading the book.

Olvassa a knyvet. (knyvet, knyvt)

Are you looking at the room?

A termet nzed? (termet, termt)

They put the saddle on the horse.

A nyerget a lra rakjk. (nyerget, nyergt)

Ive bought one of his photos.

Megvettem az egyik kpt. (kpet, kpt)

Ive walked all over the Szchnyi Square. Vgigjrtam a Szchnyi teret. (teret, tert)
6.
I have a dog.

Nekem van egy kutym. / Nekem kutym van.

I had a nightmare.

Nekem rmlmom volt.

He has brown hair.

Neki barna haja van.

She has blue eyes.

Neki kk szeme van.

They have a daughter.

Nekik van egy lnyuk. / Nekik lnyuk van.

You (sing.) have a beautiful name. Neked szp neved van.


You (plur.) have no money.

Nektek nincs pnzetek.

I have no idea.

Nekem fogalmam sincs.

7.
Minek?

For what?

Kinek?

For whom?

Tnek ltszik.

It looks like a needle.

Fnek fnak elmesli.

He tells everyone about that.

Ajndk lnak ne nzd a fogt. Beggars cannot be choosers.

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8.
szp

szpek

knny

knnyek

nehz

nehezek

flnk

flnkek

vastag

vastagok

szk

szkek

kicsi

kicsik

hatalmas hatalmasak
meghat

meghatak

szabad

szabadok

gonosz

gonoszak

ronda

rondk

gyors

gyorsak

lass

lassak

9.
The car is longer than the bike.

Az aut hosszabb, mint a bicikli.

The boy is as tall as the girl.

A fi ugyanolyan magas, mint a lny.

You are less intelligent than the others.

Nem vagy olyan okos, mint a tbbiek.

They are less educated than Alex.

Kevsb iskolzottak, mint Sanyi.

Justin is the bravest of all.

Justin a leggyesebb mindkzl.

Susan is the least brave of all.

Susan a leggyetlenebb mindkzl.

The exam is more important than the party.

A vizsga fontosabb, mint a buli.

Cheese is less expensive than in the other store. A sajt olcsbb, mint a msik boltban.
Note! less expensive = olcsbb

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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10.
Its very nice.

Nagyon szp.

Its a great deal bigger.

Jval nagyobb.

Hes incredibly smart.

Hihetetlenl okos.

Shes not that playful.

Nem annyira jtkos.

Hes much more of a brave man. Sokkal btrabb.


Its highly delusive.

Igencsak megtveszt.

Its astonishingly fast.

Elkpeszten gyors.

Its tremendously big.

Flelmetesen nagy.

11.
street teeming with people

emberektl hemzseg utca

brown-eyed girl

barna szem lny

earth soaked with rain

estl ztatott fld

landscape covered with snow

hlepte / hfedte tj

auditorium resounding with applause tapstol harsog nztr


12.
The car is fast.
The cars are fast.

A kocsi gyors.
A kocsik gyorsak.

Gyors a kocsi.
Gyorsak a kocsik.

The ball is round.


The balls are round.

A labda kerek.
A labdk kerekek.

Kerek a labda.
Kerekek a labdk.

My computer is modern.
My computers are modern.

A szmtgpem modern.
Modern a szmtgpem.
A szmtgpeim modernek. Modernek a szmtgpeim.

The flat is spacious.


The flats are spacious.

A laks tgas.
A laksok tgasak.

Tgas a laks.
Tgasak a laksok.

The music is loud.


The musics are loud.

A zene hangos.
A zenk hangosak.

Hangos a zene.
Hangosak a zenk.

The soup is delicious.


The soups are delicious.

A leves finom.
A levesek finomak.

Finom a leves.
Finomak a levesek.

His question is pointless.


A krdse rtelmetlen.
His questions are pointless. A krdsei rtelmetlenek.

rtelmetlen a krdse.
rtelmetlenek a krdsei.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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13.
Ill choose the green one.

A zldet vlasztom.

I thought of the bigger one.

A nagyobbra gondoltam.

Im standing on the narrower one.

A keskenyebben llok.

I want the expensive one.

A drgt akarom.

I saw a more comfortable one right there. Lttam ott egy knyelmesebbet.
Put the salt in the dry one.

A szrazba tedd a st!

14.
Mindent ltok.

I see everything.

Sokat tanultam.

Ive learned a lot.

Nincs ott semmi.

Theres nothing over there.

Valamire csak szolgl!

There must be something it serves for!

Senkivel nem beszltem ma.

I havent talked to anyone today.

Brhol lehet.

He can be anywhere.

Nhny ember van a buszon.

There are just a few people on the bus.

Kevesen vannak a buszon.

People are few in number on the bus.

A vrosban j sok turista van.

There a great number of tourist downtown.

Nem mennek sehova.

They arent going anywhere.

Akrki mondhatja.

Anyone can say that.

Valamirt nem telefonlt.

She didnt call me for some reason.

Mindenre ksz voltam, csak erre nem. I was ready for everything but this.

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15.
Maga megbzhat.

personal Youre trustworthy.

k maguk mondjk ezt.

reflexive They themselves say that.

Tudnak maguk errl?

personal Do you know about this?

Felhvja magra a figyelmet.

reflexive He draws the attention to himself.

Megnzik magukat a tkrben. reflexive They take a loot at themselves in the mirror.

16.
Tged kedvellek ___
____, nem t.

I like you, not him.

___
____ Megengedi neknk, hogy elmenjnk.

She allows us to leave.

Neked adom___
____ a kulcsot, nem nekik.

I give you the key, not them.

___
____ Engedjk neki, hogy nekeljen.

We let her sing.

____, hogy nekeljen.


Neki engedjk ___

Its her we let sing.

Nekem adjk klcsn ___


____ a kocsit.

Its me theyll lend the car.

___
____ Klcsn adjk nekem a kocsit.

They lend me the car.

____, nem a bartodat.


Tged hvlak ___

Ill call you, not your friend.

A tanraink nem ___


____ tiltjk meg neknk, hogy
beszljnk.

Our teachers dont forbid us to


talk.

Nem neknk tiltjk meg ___


____, hogy beszljnk.

Its not us they forbid to talk.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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17.
A fi, aki ott ll, helyes.

The boy (whos) standing over there, is handsome.

A hely, ahova jrsz, nem biztonsgos.

The place (which) youre attending is not safe.

Csinlj, amit akarsz!

Do what you want!

Amikor megjssz, rj egy mlt!

When you arrive, write me an e-mail.

Ahol gyerek van, ott vidmsg is van.

Where theres a child, theres happiness, too.

A lny, akit rgta ismerek, klfldre


ment.

The girl (whom) Ive known for a long time, went


abroad.

Elgg rmens, ami nem zavar.

Shes quite a go-getter, which doesnt bother me.

Nem tl szp vros, ahonnan jvk.

Its not a nice town where I come from.

A dal, amirl beszlek, vadi j.

The song (which) Im talking about is brand new.

A trgyals, amirl jvk, unalmas volt.

The conference (which) Im coming from was boring.

18.
A szobban alszik.

Hes sleeping in the room.

A killtsra megyek.

Im going to the exhibition.

A postra szalad.

Shes rushing to the post office.

A boltbl jvnk.

Were coming from the store.

Egy lnyba szerelmes.

Hes in love with a girl.

rmmben ugrlok.

Im jumping around with joy.

A konyhtl kt mterre van az ablak. The window is two meters from the kitchen.
Lekiabl az erklyrl.

He shouts from the balcony.

A Dvidhoz megyek hromra.

Im going to Davids place by three.

A bankig kell csak stlnod.

You only have to walk up to the bank.

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19.
Mssal lttam stlni a parkban.

I saw her walk in the park with another person.

Hetente jr szni.

He goes swimming every week.

Csaldostul megy nyaralni.

Shes going on vacation with her family.

A kapuig rohantak, aztn elestek.

They ran up to the front door, then fell.

Mindenkppen be kell mennnk a


krhzba.

Well have to go to the hospital anyway.

Jegyrusknt dolgozik.

He works as a ticket clerk.

Radrral nem lehet rni.

You cant write with an eraser.

Egy fival a karjaiban esett ki a


szekrnybl.

She fell out from the cupboard with a boy in her


arms.

20.
Ez az asztal ngyszgletes.

This table is square.

Az a kvfz elromlott.

That coffee machine is broken.

Annak a gyalogosnak eltrt a lba.

That pedestrian has broken his leg.

Ltttok annak a filmnek a folytatst?

Did you see the sequel of that movie?

Arra a padra ne ljetek le!

Dont sit down on that bench!

Addig a hivatali pletig gyalogoltam.

I walked up to that office building.

Nem futottunk ssze avval a rokonunkkal. We didnt run across with that relative of ours.
Na ettl fltem!

This is exactly what I was afraid of!

Ehhez kpest a te problmd apr.

Compared to this, your problem is nothing.

21.
Itt vagyok.

Im here.

A tzolt ott van.

The fireman is there.

Gyertek ide!

Come over here!

Onnan sokan kivndorolnak.

Many people migrate from there.

Tegyk le ide a szekrnyt!

Put down the cupboard over here.

Ltod ezt a bankot? Innen fognak a bankrablk


kiszaladni.

You see this bank? The bankrobbers will run out


from here.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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22.
Olyan motort vettek, ami ktszzzal
repeszt.

Theyve bought a motorbike which does twohundred.

Ilyen dolgokat n nem ismerek.

I dont know things like this.

Ilyenre soha nem gondol.

He never thinks of things like this.

Mg letemben nem hallottam olyanrl.

Never in my life have I heard of things like that.

Olyanhoz menj, aki rt a gygytshoz.

Go to someone who has some idea of healing.

23.
Mi volna a j megolds?

What would be the right solution?

Kit ismertek meg Madridban?

Who did they get acquainted with in Madrid?

Mirt vezetsz jogostvny nlkl?

Why are you driving without a drivers license?

Mit akarsz ezzel mondani?

What do you mean by that?

Mikor rnk haza?

When will we get home?

Hny lny van az osztlyodban?

How many girls are there in your class?

Kinek adtam a pnzed? Talld ki!

Who did I give your money? Figure it out!

Hnyszor mondtam, hogy zrd el a vizet! How many times have I told you to turn off the tap?
Hogy van az anyd?

How is your mother?

Milyen utak vannak Angliba?

What roads are in England?

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24.
I write a letter to my parents.

Levelet rok a szleimnek.

Levelet rtam a szleimnek.

I eat an apple for breakfast.

Reggelire almt eszek.

Reggelire almt ettem.

Will you cook the dinner?

Megfzd a vacsort?

Megfzted a vacsort?

Well plant a flower.

ltetnk egy virgot.

ltettnk egy virgot.

Well plant flowers.

Virgokat ltetnk.

Virgokat ltettnk.

Theyre washing their clothes.

A ruhjukat mossk.

A ruhjukat mostk.

Will you drink that Coke?

Megiszod azt a klt mg?

Megittad azt a klt mg?

Ill iron the shirt.

Kivasalom az inget.

Kivasaltam az inget.

Theyre playing with the cat.

A macskval jtszanak.

A macskval jtszottak.

The student is listening to the


teacher.

A tanul a tanrra figyel.

A tanul a tanrra figyelt.

They try everything.

Mindent megprblnak.

Mindent megprbltak.

We cant see anything in this fog. Semmit se ltunk a kdben.

Semmit se lttunk a kdben.

Whatever you do, itll do just


fine.

Akrmit teszel is, j lesz!

Akrmit tettl is, j lesz!

Will you buy many clothes in the


store?

Sok ruht vesztek az


ruhzban?

Sok ruht vettetek az


ruhzban?

25.
Ill do it.

Majd megcsinlom.

Will you give me that pencil? Majd odaadod azt a tollat?

Meg fogom csinlni.


Oda fogod adni azt a tollat?

Its going to rain tomorrow.

___
___ esik holnap.

Esni __fog_ holnap.

What are you going to do?

Mit csinlsz majd?

Mit fogsz csinlni?

Theyre going to say they


quit.

Majd azt mondjk, hogy


kilpnek.

Azt fogjk mondani, hogy


kilpnek.

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26.
If the wind werent blowing, itd be hotter.

Ha nem fjna a szl, melegebb volna.

If we did more exercises, wed be stronger.

Ha tbbet tornznnk, ersebbek lennnk.

If I got my salary, Id buy a car.

Ha megkapnm a fizetsem, kocsit


vennk.

If you (plur.) didnt sleep till nine, Id be surprised.

Ha nem aludntok kilencig, meglepdnk.

If they went skiing, the house would be empty for a


week.

Ha selni mennnek, egy htig res volna a


hz.

If the wind hadnt been blowing, itd have been


hotter.

Ha nem fjt volna a szl, melegebb lett


volna.

If we had done more exercises, wed have been


stronger.

Ha tbbet tornztunk volna, ersebbek


lettnk volna.

If I had got my salary, Id have bought a car.

Ha megkaptam volna a fizetsem, kocsit


vettem volna.

If you (plur.) hadnt slept till nine, Id have been


surprised.

Ha nem aludtatok volna kilencig,


meglepdtem volna.

If they had gone skiing, the house would have been Ha selni mentek volna, egy htig res lett
empty for a week.
volna a hz.
27.
to show

mutat / muttat

to let go

elenged/ mentet

to make believe

elhiszet / elhitet

to make sy do

megcsinltat / megtettet

to pretend

tetet / tettet

to print

nyomtat / nyomat

to hear the lesson felelet / feleltet


to fail sy

megbuktat / megugrat

to feed

etet / teltet

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28.
Get away from the bench.

Gyere el a pad melll / mell.

After school Im going to the football


training.

Iskola ell / utn fociedzsre megyek.

Theres a piece of paper under the pen.

A toll al / alatt van egy lap.

Were playing outside in the park.

Kint / Kvl jtszunk a parkban.

The hotels are in front of the greengrocer.

A zldsgessel eltt / szemben vannak a


szllodk.

Well take back the clothes against receipt.

Nyugta ellenben / ellen visszavesszk a ruht.

There were no injuries during the game.

A meccs sorban / folyamn nem trtnt srls.

The lady says hes been misused by the


robber.

A hlgy szerint / alapjn a rabl bntalmazta is.

Im home every Friday.

Pntekenknt / Pntekente otthon vagyok.

I wouldnt go towards downtown in this


traffic.

A belvros fl / fel nem mennk ilyen


forgalomban.

29.
He shifted the responsibility on you.

Rtok hrtotta a felelssget.

Are you coming to the cinema with me tonight?

Eljsz velem moziba ma este?

Were walking on the bridge and theres a river


under us.

pp a hdon stlunk, alattunk pedig egy


foly van.

Theres something to it.

Van benne valami.

Ill tell you later what they told about you (plur.)

Majd elmeslem, mit mondtak rlatok.

He was going to be revenged on him.

Rajta akart bosszt llni.

You wont get a dollar from me!

Tlem nem kapsz egy vasat se!

Did she knocked at your (plur.) door, too?

Hozztok is bekopogott?

He always has a penknife with him.

Mindig nla van a bicska.

Theyre going to choose between you and me.

Kztem s kzted fognak vlasztani.

The one who stands between us will be hit on the


head.

Aki kznk ll, azt fejbe klintom.

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30.
financially

pnzgyileg

carefully

gondosan

regularly

szablyosan

in Japanese japnul
beautifully

szpen

badly

rosszul

wrongly

helytelenl

properly

megfelelen

quietly

nyugodtan

sloppily

hanyagul

31.
I cant play the guitar because my wrist is
broken.

Nem gitrozhatok, mert eltrt a csuklm.

My sons attending that nursery school, too.

A fiam is abba az vodba jr.

Until you dont behave yourself, youll get no


ice-cream.

Amg nem viselkedsz jl, nem kapsz fagyit.

Not even God knows whats the matter with


him.

Az Isten se tudja, mi a baja.

As soon as she put her foot on the street, she


fainted.

Amint kilpett az utcra, eljult.

Though I dont know him, I dont like him.

Br nem ismerem, nem kedvelem.

Theyve cut the tree without having permission


for it.

Kivgtk a ft anlkl, hogy lett volna r


engedlyk.

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33.
Megrja / rja a levelet.

He writes the letter.

Megcsinlja / Csinlja a leckt.

Shes doing her homework.

Elrepl / Repl a glya.

The stork flies away.

Megtudjk / Tudjk a j hrt.

They learn the good news.

Elfutok / Futok a plyaudvarra.

Im running to the railway station.

Felszll / Szll a buszra.

He gets on the bus.

Elmondott / Mondott mindent.

She told me everything.

Megismerlek./Ismerlek.

I recognize you.

Az elads unalmas. Mindjrt elalszok /alszok rajta. The show is boring. Im about to fall asleep.
Megesik / Esik az ilyesmi.

Such things happen.

34.
Elakarja / El akarja mondani.

She wants to tell me.

Mindig megszokott / meg szokott krdezni.

He usually asks my opinion.

Megvagyok / Meg vagyok dbbenve.

Im dumbfounded.

Megvan / Meg van a megfejts.

Weve got the solution.

Megkell / Meg kell nznem azt a filmet.

I must see that movie.

Nha leszokott / le szokott menni a parkba.

Now and then he goes down to the park.

Mr megszoktuk / meg szoktuk a trpusi


klmt.

Weve already got used to the tropic


climate.

35.
Megitattad a csecsemt? Igen, meg.
Elintztk az gyet?

Nem, .

Felkelt mr?

Taln mr fel.

Kinyitnd az ablakot?

Nem, .

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

304

36.
ad

2nd PS DEFINITE

add / adjad

fut

3rd PS INDEFINITE

fusson

jtszik

3rd PP INDEFINITE

jtszanak

megy

1st PS INDEFINITE

menjek

jn

2nd PS INDEFINITE

gyere

jn

3rd PS INDEFINITE

jjjn

alszik

2nd PS INDEFINITE

aludj / aludjl

lk

2nd PS INDEFINITE

lkj / lkjl

vr

3rd PS DEFINITE

vrja

iszik

2nd PP DEFINITE

igytok

ugrik

3rd PP INDEFINITE

ugorjatok

mond

3rd PP DEFINITE

mondjk

kel

2nd PS INDEFINITE

kelj / keljl

hisz

2nd PS INDEFINITE

higgy / higgyjl

tesz

2nd PS DEFINITE

tedd / tegyed

tesz

3rd PS DEFINITE

tegye

lesz

1st PS INDEFINITE

legyek

3rd PP INDEFINITE

njenek

3rd PP DEFINITE

ljk

van

2nd PS INDEFINITE

lgy / legyl

3rd PS INDEFINITE

ljen

hallgat

2nd PP INDEFINITE

hallgassatok

esik

1st PP INDEFINITE

essnk

rak

1st PP DEFINITE

rakjunk

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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37.
A Kirly utcban vgig lehet stlni / stlnod.
El kellene dnteni / dntened, mit akarsz.
k akartk kirgni / kirgniuk azt a knyvelt. Most bnhatjk.
Meg tudod csinlni / csinlnod a lefolyt vagy nem?
Rgen mg szabad volt beleugrani / beleugranunk a szkktba.
Rgen mg szabad volt neknk beleugrani / beleugranunk a szkktba.
Felttlenl szksges neked Sopronba utazni / utaznod?
Itt tilos meztelenl rohanglni / rohanglniuk.
Be szabad fradni / fradnom?
Hogyne lehetne lubickolni / lubickolnom a Balatonba!
38.
Valszn, hogy vonattal utazik / utazni.
Ideje felkelned / felkelni.
Lehetetlen ezt a munkt ilyen hamar elvgeznik / elvgezni.
Lehetetlen, hogy ne tudd / nem tudni, mikor van a szletsnapod.
Megtrtnhet, hogy nyersz / nyerni a lottn.
Tancsos lenne lejnnl / lejnni a snekrl.
J lenne, ha nem hisztiznl / nem hisztizni.
J lenne kirndulnom / kirndulni menni a hegyekbe.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

306

39.
The secretary was married by her boss two
days ago.

Kt nappal ezeltt a titkrnt elvette a fnke.

One more step should be done.

Mg egy lpst kellene tenni. / Kellene tenni mg


egy lpst.

Tokaj wine is made in Tokaj.

A tokaji bort Tokajban ksztik. / A tokaji bor


Tokajban kszl.

The cake has been eaten up.

A tortt megettk. / Megettk a tortt.

The enterprises have been sold.

A vllalatokat eladtk. / Eladtk a vllalatokat.

The enterprises were not sold.

A vllalatokat nem adtk el. / Nem adtk el a


vllalatokat.

40.
Vrj csak! Megtantalak kesztybe dudlni! kiltotta a vnasszony a virgra pisil finak.
Wait and see! Ill put the fear of god into you!, the old lady shouted to the boy peeing on her
flower.
Megfjtk a bort! dbbent r a loptk.
The wine has been snagged!, the sampling tube remained astonished.
Tudod, mi az, hogy tisztelet? krdezte a tanr.
You know what respect means?, the teacher asked.
Az, hogy diploms emberekhez lassan beszlnk, hogy rtsk, amit mondunk. vlaszolta a
dik.
We talk to the professional classes slowly so that they understand what we say., the student
answered.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

307

41.
fej fej

head to milk

kel kell

to wake up to have to

nzet nzet

point of view to get sy to watch kz ksz

hand ready

l l

edge to live

mz msz

honey whitewash

kvet kvet

stone (accusative) to follow

rz rsz

copper part

tz tz

fire to pin

sk csk

plane stripe

tett tett

deed did

ok k

reason they

sz sz

autumn grey-haired

gyjt gyjt to light to collect

szelet szelet

wind (acc.) slice

dl dl

to devastate to fall down

kerts kerts fence procurement

szr szr

to stab to filter

szv szv

heart to suck

s sz

to dig ace

l l

lap to kill

s sz

and mind

mer mer

to dare to scoop

hi fi

self-conceited boy

42.
rzed mg / mr a fjdalmat?

Can you still feel the pain?

Most mr / Azonnal nem rzem.

I cant feel it now.

Hamar / Mr kiteregettem a zoknikat.

Ive already hung out the socks.

Ksn / Mg mindig pincrkedik?

Is he still a waiter?

Mindjrt / Nemsokra kezddik a rajzfilm. The cartoon begins soon.


Megrkeztek mr / mg?

Have they arrived yet?

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308

43.
Hogy rted ezt?

What do you mean by that?

Milyen j, hogy tallkoztunk!

Its so good we met!

Milyen az frje?

Whats her husband like?

Hogy mondjk magyarul azt, hogy bka? How do you say frog in Hungarian?
Milyen szerencse!

What luck!

Hogy lehet ilyet csinlni?

How can you do things like that?

Milyen kr!

What a pity!

44.
bizonytalan  uncertain

bizonyatlan  ____
_____

gondtalan 

carefree

gondatlan 

careless

szemtelen

impudent

szemetlen

have no eyes

rendtelen


____
_____

rendetlen

untidy

laktalan

____
_____

lakatlan

uninhabited

nyugtalan

uneasy

nyugatlan


____
_____

mveltelen


____
_____

mveletlen

uneducated

lettelen

lifeless


letetlen

____
_____

stalan

unsalted

stlan

____
_____

esztelen

unreasonable eszetlen

knytelen

obliged

knyetlen


____
_____

halhattalan


____
_____

halhatatlan

immortal

crazed

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309

45.
_______ Te is a munkahelyedrl jsz?

(is)

Ne minket piszklj _______! Piszkld a msik csapatot!

(minket)

Dolgoztak mr azzal a beosztottal ______.

(azzal a)

______ Odaadjtok neki a brndt? Siet.

(neki)

Mg n se pihentem. Reggel ta festem a hzfalat.

(mgse)

______ Kivittem volna a szemetet, de nem volt kedvem. (volna)


Sikerlt sszetkolnom ______a kutyahzat.

(ssze)

Megjavtottk _____ a bringt?

(meg)

Alig ______ keltem fel, a kakas mr el is hallgatott.

(fel)

_____ Meg kell rtened, nem tehettem mst.

(kell)

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310

SUMMARY TABLES
In the following tables, Ill try to collect as many words as possible, according to what type they
are. It can be a great help if you see which the irregular or exception words are, so you can learn
specifically them and you know any other word of the same form is regular.

MONOSYLLABIC WORDS AND WORDS ENDING IN TWO CONSONANTS WITH , , , TAKING


THE PLURAL -EK OR -K OR BOTH:
PLURAL SUFFIX -EK
blcs, bsz, fld, fl, hlgy, knyv, ns, v, z, rgy, szrny, szgy, tbb, tgy,
tlgy, trt, gy, vlgy, zld

PLURAL SUFFIX -K
blff, bgy, bjt, br, bn, bz, csd, csr, cssz, csr, dg, djf, dh, frccs,
frt, ftty, gb, gg, gmb, gnc, grcs, gz, gyk, hs, kb, kd, kr, kz,
krt, lsz, ltty, nyg, r, ptty, rg, rnk, sr, sn, szr, szrp, szsz, szcs,
szr, tk, tmb, tr, trp, r, zr

PLURAL SUFFIX -EK OR -K


WITH A CHANGE IN MEANING

sz
cspp

> szek = grey-haired men; > szk = autumns


> csppek = (are) tiny; > csppk = drops

PLURAL SUFFIX -EK


WITH TWO FORMS AND
WITH NO CHANGE IN MEANING

csend
csnd
szeg
szg

>
>
>
>

csendek = silence
csndek = silence
szegek = nails
szgek = angles

A SPECIAL WORD
cs

> csk = younger brothers

MONOSYLLABIC WORDS AND WORDS ENDING IN TWO CONSONANTS WITH A, TAKING THE
PLURAL -AK:
PLURAL SUFFIX -AK
agy, g, gy, ll, r, rny, fal, gally, gaz, gt, gyr, hal, ht, hz, kd, lb, lz,
mj, mz, nd, nyj, nyak, nyl, nyrs, sl, sarj, szj, szr, szrny, szz, tl, tr,
trgy, trs, trs, vad, vaj, vd, vgy, vll, vr, vz, zr

PLURAL SUFFIX -AK OR -OK


pr

> prak = a couple of people (as numeral); > prok = couples (as noun)

SPECIAL WORDS WITH -AK


fog
toll
l
arany

>
>
>
>

fogak = teeth
tollak = pens, feathers
lak = kennels
aranyak = golds

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311

DROP-VOWEL WORDS:
SINGULAR

PLURAL

SINGULAR

PLURAL

alom
lom
rok
tok
bagoly
bajusz
barom
btor
berek
bokor
burok
btyk
cukor
csokor
csupor
cscsk
cslk
dolog
eper
farok
freg
gdr
gyomor
hurok
iker
kapocs
kapor
karom
korom
kebel
kreg
klyk
krm

almok
lmok
rkok
tkok
baglyok
bajszok
barmok
btrak
berkek
bokrok
burkok
btykk
cukrok
csokrok
csuprok
cscskk
cslkk
dolgok
eprek
farkak
frgek
gdrk
gyomrok
hurkok
ikrek
kapcsok
kaprok
karmok
kormok
keblek
krgek
klykk
krmk

lepel
majom
marok
meder
nyereg
orom
lom
bl
kl
kr
pokol
retek
rcsk
sarok
stor
szatyor
szeder
szitok
szobor
szurok
szutyok
takony
telek
terem
titok
torok
torony
tulok
tcsk
tkr
verem
vcsk
vdr

leplek
majmok
markok
medrek
nyergek
ormok
lmok
blk
klk
krk
poklok
retkek
rcskk
sarkak
strak
szatyrok
szedrek
szitkok
szobrok
szurkok
szutykok
taknyok
telkek
termek
titkok
torkok
tornyok
tulkok
tcskk
tkrk
vermek
vcskk
vdrk

FORMATION

STEP 1:
BASE WORD.
tok
STEP 2:
ADD THE PLURAL ENDING WITH A LINK ACCORDING TO THE
VOWEL OF THE LAST SYLLABLE.
tokok
STEP 3:
ELIMINATE THE VOWEL OF THE LAST SYLLABLE.
tkok

A SPECIAL WORD
llek

> lelkek = souls


IT IS A DROP-VOWEL NOUN AND THE BECOMES E IN THE FIRST SYLLABLE!!!

THE SUFFIXES -ELEM, -ALOM


hiedelem
> hiedelmek = superstitions
fogadalom
> fogadalmak = oath
NOUNS ENDING IN -ELEM, -ALOM ARE TYPICAL DROP-VOWEL WORDS! THE PLURAL BECOMES -ELMEK, -ALMAK.

NUMERALS
hrom
ezer

> hrmak
> ezrek = thousands of people

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312

WORDS WITH LAST VOWEL SHORTENED:


DEEP WORDS -AK
kanl
madr
szamr
pohr
bogr
parzs
darzs
nyr
sr
r
t
kt
ld
rd
nyl
n
nyl
hd

kanalak
madarak
szamarak
poharak
bogarak
parazsak
darazsak
nyarak
sarak
urak
utak
kutak
ludak
rudak
nyulak
inak
nyilak
hidak

HIGH WORDS -EK


tehn
verb
szekr
szemt
fedl
cserp
kenyr
ktl
kerk
tl
bl
tr
szl
fl
dl
dr
nyl
egr

tehenek
verebek
szekerek
szemetek
fedelek
cserepek
kenyerek
ktelek
kerekek
telek
belek
terek
szelek
felek
delek
derek
nyelek
egerek

g
lgy
r
jg
kz
rz
gykr
egyb
nehz
kevs
szz
tz
vz
tz
ht
fenk
tenyr

FORMATION
egek
legyek
erek
jegek
kezek
rezek
gykerek
egyebek
nehezek
kevesek
szzek
tzek
vizek
tizek
hetek
fenekek
tenyerek

STEP 1: BASE WORD.


agr (greyhound), egr (mouse)
STEP 2: CHANGE TO A AND TO E.
agar, eger
STEP 3: ATTACH -AK OR -EK.
agarak, egerek

SPECIAL WORDS
fazk
> fazekak = pots
derk
> derekak = waists
FAZK IS A DEEP-VOWEL WORD! DERK IS ALSO A DEEP-VOWEL WORD!!

MONOSYLLABIC WORDS WITH SHORT I OR LONG :


DEEP WORDS
WITH -AK
DEEP WORDS
WITH -OK

HIGH WORDS
WITH -EK

dj
djak
csk
cskok
cm
cmek
v
v
cikk
cikkek
klipp
klippek

j
jak
gyk
gykok
csny
csnyek
z
z
csikk
csikkek
lift
liftek

szj
szjak
kn
knok
dsz
dszek
rm
rm
dzsipp
dzsippek
pinty
pintyek

sk
skok
hm
hmek
sn
sn
finn
finnek
ring
ringek

sp
spok
hr
hrek
szn
szn
gipsz
gipszek
rizs
rizsek

sr
srok
ny
nyek
szv
szv
iksz
ikszek
tipp
tippek

zsr
zsrok
r
rek
nyr
nyrek
ing
ingek
szirt
szirtek

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

313

V-WORDS AND WORDS WITH V FEATURES:


SINGULAR PLURAL

SINGULAR REGULAR PLURAL

V PLURAL

l
t
cs
k
t
f
ny

daru
falu
fatty
hamu
l
mag
sz

darvak (crane, animal)


falvak
fattyak
hamvak (ashes of a dead body)
levek
magvak
szavak (general terms)

lovak
tavak
csvek
kvek
tvek
fvek
nyvek

daruk (crane, machine)


faluk
fattyk
hamuk (ash of a cigarette)
lk
magok
szk (grammatical terms)

TWO OTHER WORDS


m
b

mvek
bvek

> THE LONG DOES NOT CHANGE!


> IT IS AN ADJECTIVE MEANING ABUNDANT!

AND SOME MORE IRREGULAR WORDS:


BASE PLURAL
frfi
ujj
borj
varj
fi
fi

frfiak
ujjak
borjak
varjak
fik
fiak

EXPLANATION

MEANING

DEEP-VOWEL WORD!
DEEP-VOWEL WORD!
THE LONG BECOMES -AK!
THE LONG BECOMES -AK!
ONE REGULAR PLURAL -K

man
finger
calf
crow
boy
ONE IRREGULAR PLURAL WITH -AK! son

NUMERALS
IRREGULARITIES
PLURAL
sok
sokak

ACCUSATIVE POSSESSIVE 3RD PS


sokat
-

EXPLANATION
IT TAKES THE PLURAL -A

kevs

kevesek keveset

IT TAKES THE PLURAL -EK

ezer

ezrek

ezret

DROP-VOWEL NUMERAL

hrom

hrmak

hrmat

DROP-VOWEL NUMERAL

ht

hetek

hetet

THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

tz

tizek

tizet

THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

NOTE THAT THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS MAKE NO SENSE WITH NUMERALS.

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

314

ADJECTIVES
TYPE
RHV words

PLURAL
-ek
-k
-ok
-ak

ACCUSATIVE
-et
-t
-ot
-at

POSSESSIVE 3RD PS
-je, -e
-je, -e
-ja, -a
-ja, -a

ALL REGULAR HIGH ADJECTIVES TAKE -EK


NO ADJECTIVE TAKES K UNLESS AFTER A SUFFIX
SOME ADJECTIVES TAKE -OK
ALL REGULAR DEEP ADJECTIVES TAKE -AK

vastag

vastagok

vastagot

-a

THE PLURAL IS -OK

boldog

boldogok

boldogot

THE PLURAL IS -OK

bolond

bolondok

bolondot

-ja

THE PLURAL IS -OK

nagy

nagyok

nagyot

-ja

THE PLURAL IS -OK

IRDV
IRHV

-k
-k

-t
-t

-ja
-je

A BECOMES IN THE LAST OPEN SYLLABLE


E BECOMES IN THE LAST OPEN SYLLABLE

IRDV
IRHV

-ak
-ek

-t
-t

-ja
-je

ADJECTIVES ENDING IN
(NO LINK VOWEL IN ACCUSATIVE CASE)

IRDV
IRHV

-ak, -k
-ek, -k

-t
-t

-ja
-je

ADJECTIVES ENDING IN ,
(NO LINK VOWEL IN ACCUSATIVE CASE)

btor

-ak

-at

DROP-VOWEL ADJECTIVE

nehz

-ek

-et

-e

THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

RDV words

EXPLANATION

ifj
-ak
-at
-a
IT TAKES THE PLURAL -AK
NOTE THAT THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS DONT ALWAYS MAKE SENSE WITH ADJECTIVES! THEY ARE SHOWN AS AN EXAMPLE.

SOME EXAMPLES FOR ADJECTIVES WITH POSSESSIVE ENDINGS


ADJECTIVES
gyenge

EXAMPLE
A pnz a gyengje.
He has a weakness for money.

EXPLANATION
A(Z ) GYENGJE =
(HIS / HER) WEAKNESS

nehz

A neheze mg htra van.


The worst is yet to come.

(A DOLOGNAK A) NEHEZE =
THE DIFFICULTY (OF SOMETHING)

nagy

A nagyja mr ksz van.


Most of it is already finished.

(A DOLOGNAK A) NAGYJA =
THE BIGGER PART (OF SOMETHING)

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

315

COMPARISON OF ADJECTIVES
TYPE
POSITIVE

HUNGARIAN
olyan, mint
nem olyan, mint
annyira, mint
nem annyira, mint
ugyanolyan, mint
nem ugyanolyan, mint

ENGLISH
asas
not soas
asas
not soas
just asas
not just asas

EXPLANATION
THE WORD MINT IS A PREPOSITION!
ANNYIRA IS A SYNONYM OF OLYAN!
MINT IS PRECEDED BY A COMMA WHEN IN
COMPARISON!

COMPARATIVE -bb, mint


bb, -nl, -nl

more /-er than


more /-er than

THE SUFFIX BB CAN TAKE LINK VOWELS:


-OBB, -ABB, -EBB

SUPERLATIVE

IRREGULARITIES
j

a leg-bb
mind kzl
kztk
a vilgon
POSITIVE
COMPARATIVE
j
jobb

the most /-est


of all
of all
in the world
SUPERLATIVE
a legjobb

szp

szp

szebb

a legszebb

LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

kevs

kevs

kevesebb

a legkevesebb

LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

nehz

nehz

nehezebb

a legnehezebb

LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

knny

knny

knnyebb

a legknnyebb

THE FINAL CHANGES TO E

hossz

hossz

hosszabb

a leghosszabb

THE FINAL CHANGES TO A

lass

lass

lassabb

a leglassabb

THE FINAL CHANGES TO A

ifj

ifj

ifjabb

a legifjabb

THE FINAL CHANGES TO A

btor

btor

btrabb

a legbtrabb

DROP-VOWEL ADJECTIVE

fiatal

fiatal

fiatalabb

a legfiatalabb

IT TAKES THE SUFFIX ABB!

THE SUFFIX BB CAN TAKE LINK VOWELS:


-OBB, -ABB, -EBB

EXPLANATION
LAST VOWEL SHORTENED

COMPARISON OF ADVERBS
hamar

hamar

hamarabb

a leghamarabb

IT TAKES THE SUFFIX ABB!

sok

sok

tbb

a legtbb

COMPLETELY IRREGULAR!

ADVERBS IN s, -s
fent

fent

fels

a legfels

SUPERLATIVE WITH NO -BB SUFFIX!

lent

lent

als

a legals

SUPERLATIVE WITH NO -BB SUFFIX!

kint

kint

kls

a legkls

SUPERLATIVE WITH NO -BB SUFFIX!

bent

bent

bels

a legbels

SUPERLATIVE WITH NO -BB SUFFIX!

kzpen

kzpen
kzps
IT HAS NO SUPERLATIVE DEGREE!
THE ONLY EXCEPTION: A LEGFELSBB BRSG = SUPREME COURT

Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

316

ACCUSATIVE CASE -T = DIRECT OBJECT


GENERALLY SPEAKING, THE PLURAL ENDING -K IS REPLACED WITH THE ACCUSATIVE ENDING T.
SOME EXAMPLES: HZAK - HZAT; KVEK - KVET; FLDEK - FLDET; AJTK- AJTT
RULE 1 FOR IRREGULARITIES
TYPE
BASE
PLURAL
ACCUSATIVE
EXPLANATION
-j
szj
szjak
szjt
-l
l
lek
lt
-ly
dagly daglyok daglyt
NOUNS ENDING IN
-n
szn
sznok
sznt
J L LY N NY R S SZ Z
-ny
fny
fnyek
fnyt
TAKE THE ACCUSATIVE ENDING -T
-r
r
rk
rt
WITH NO LINK VOWEL!
-s
sas
sasok
sast
-sz
sz
szok
szt
-z
mez
mezek
mezt
RULE 2 FOR IRREGULARITIES
TYPE
BASE
PLURAL
ACCUSATIVE
EXPLANATION
Regular zaj
Irregular vaj

zajok
vajak

zajt
vajat

Regular br
Irregular zr

brok
zrak

brt
zrat

Regular bl
Irregular tl

blok
blt
tlak
tlt
PLURAL FOR ACCUSATIVE CASE
PLURAL
ACCUSATIVE PLURAL EXPLANATION
bartok
bartokat
ATTACH -AT OR ET
edny
ednyeket
TO THE END OF
csvek
csveket
THE WORD PLURAL NOUN.
tetk
tetket
NO IRREGULARITY IN THE
jrdk
jrdkat
PLURAL ACCUSATIVE CASE!

TYPE

BASE
bart
Any kind edny
of word cs
tet
jrda

RULE 2 SAYS THAT RULE 1


DOES NOT APPLY TO
IRREGULAR NOUNS!
THAT IS IRREGULAR NOUNS KEEP
THE PLURAL LINK VOWEL IN
ACCUSATIVE CASE!

DATIVE CASE -NAK, -NEK = INDIRECT OBJECT


JUST ATTACH THE DATIVE ENDING -NAK OR -NEK TO THE END OF THE WORD WITH NO LINK VOWEL!
SOME EXAMPLES: HZ - HZNAK; K - KNEK; FLD - FLDNEK; AJT- AJTNAK
ALSO PLURAL WORDS CAN BE MADE DATIVE: HZAKNAK, KVEKNEK, FLDEKNEK, AJTKNAK
TYPE
BASE
PLURAL
DATIVE
EXPLANATION
fi
fik
finak
lny
lnyok
lnynak
NO LINK VOWEL IS NEEDED
ember
emberek
embernek
WITH -NAK, -NEK!
r
rk
rnek
TYPE
BASE
PLURAL
DATIVE PLURAL
EXPLANATION
fi
fik
fiknak
lny
lnyok
lnyoknak
ATTACH -NAK, -NEK
ember
emberek
embereknek
AFTER THE PLURAL ENDING!
r
rk
rknek

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317

POSSESSIVE CASE = GENITIVE


THE SINGULAR POSSESSIVE ENDINGS ARE: -M, -D, -JA/-JE, -UNK/-NK, -TOK/-TEK/-TK, -JUK/-JK
THE PLURAL POSSESSIVE ENDINGS ARE: -AIM/-EIM, -AID/-EID, -JAI/-JEI, -AINK/-EINK, -AITOK/-EITEK, -AIK/-EIK
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE SINGULAR
POSSESSIVE PLURAL
EXPLANATION
bajom
kpem
bajaim
kpeim
bajod
kped
bajaid
kpeid
SOMETIMES
R words baj
baja
kpe
bajai
kpei
THE 3RD PS AND
kp
bajunk kpnk bajaink
kpeink
THE 3RD PP FORM
bajotok kpetek bajaitok
kpeitek
LOSE THEIR J!
bajuk
kpk
bajaik
kpeik
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE 3RD PS
POSSESSIVE 3RD PP
EXPLANATION
tet
teteje
tetejk
mez mezeje
mezejk
er
ereje
erejk
erd
erdeje
erdejk
THE LONG AND THE LONG
IR words vel
veleje
velejk
IN THESE WORDS CHANGE TO
td
tdeje
tdejk
E AND A!
fels
felseje
felsejk
kls klseje
klsejk
bels belseje
belsejk
ajt
ajtaja
ajtajuk
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE 3RD PS
POSSESSIVE 3RD PP
EXPLANATION
tl
tele
telk
DROP-VOWEL WORDS AND THOSE
IR words madr madara
madaruk
WITH THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED
tkr tkrk
tkrk
TAKE THE 3RD PS AND 3RD PP
lom
lmuk
lmuk
SUFFIXES WITHOUT J.
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE 3RD PS
NOTE!
EXPLANATION
IR words fotel
fotele, fotelje
Usually there is no
SOME WORDS IN L G R CAN TAKE
virg
virga, virgja
change in the meaning.
THE 3RD PS SUFFIX WITH OR
kar
kara, karja
Except kar: faculty, arm
WITHOUT J.
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE 3RD PS
POSSESSIVE 3RD PP
EXPLANATION
IR words apa
apja
apjuk
THESE WORDS TAKE THE 3RD PS
anya
anyja
anyjuk
AND 3RD PP SUFFIX WITH J.
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE SINGULAR
POSSESSIVE PLURAL
EXPLANATION
fim
fiam
fiim
fiaim
fid
fiad
fiid
fiaid
WHEN THE LONG STAYS,
IR words fi
fija
fia
fii
fiai
FI MEANS BOY.
fink
fiunk
fiink
fiaink
WHEN THE LONG BECOMES A,
fitok
fiatok
fiitok
fiaitok
FI MEANS SON.
fijuk
fiuk
fiik
fiaik
TYPE
BASE
POSSESSIVE SINGULAR
POSSESSIVE PLURAL
EXPLANATION
IR words nyl
nyula
nyuluk
THE LONG IN THESE WORDS
r
ura
uruk
CHANGES TO SHORT U IN 3RD PS
AND 3RD PP!
POSSESSIVE CASE IN ACCUSATIVE CASE
YOU CAN EITHER ATTACH THE ACCUSATIVE ENDING OR NOT. THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS CAN EXPRESS THE ACCUSATIVE
CASE BY THEMSELVES. SOME EXAMPLES: HZAM(AT), LNYAITOK(AT), KERTNK(ET), FZETEIK(ET)
THE DEFINITE ARTICLES
THE DEFINITE ARTICLES MUST BE USED WITH THE POSSESSIVE ENDINGS! EXAMPLES: A FIAM, AZ ERSZNYNK

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318

POSSESSIVE CASE = GENITIVE


NUMBER /
PERSON
3rd PS
/3rd PP
NUMBER, PERSON
1st PS
2nd PS
3rd PS
1st PP
2nd PP
3rd PP

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN 3RD PS AND 3RD PP


ONE POSSESSOR
ONE POSSESSOR
MORE POSSESSORS MORE POSSESSORS
ONE POSSESSION
MORE POSSESSIONS ONE POSSESSION MORE POSSESSIONS
az hza
az hzai
az hzuk
az hzaik
his house
his houses
their house
their houses
EMPHASIS ON THE POSSESSOR
SINGULAR
PLURAL
az n-m
az n-aim, -eim
a te-d
a te-aid, -eid
az -ja, -je
az -jai, -jei
a mi-unk, -nk
a mi-aink, -eink
a ti-tok, -tek, -tk
a ti-aitok, -eitek
az -juk, -jk
az -aik, -eik

POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS
-

sajt

SINGULAR
az enym
a tied / a tid
az v
a mienk / a mink
a tietek / a titek
az vk
a sajt hzam
my own house

PLURAL
az enyim
a tieid
az vi
a mieink
a tieitek
az vik
a sajt hzaim
my own houses

EXPLANATION
ENYM HAS ANOTHER
PLURAL FORM:
AZ ENYMEK

A SAJT = OWN

PRESENT TENSE
THE PRESENT TENSE IS EXPRESSED WITH PRESENT SIMPLE (CONTINOUS), PRESENT PERFECT
(CONTINOUS)
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
DEFINITE CONJUGATION
-ok (-om)
-ek (-em)
-k (-m)
-om
-em
-m
-sz; -asz; -ol
-sz; -esz; -el
-sz; -esz; -l
-od
-ed
-d
-; (-ik)
-; (-ik)
-; (-ik)
-(j)a
-i
-i
-unk
-nk
-nk
-(j)uk
-(j)k
-(j)k
-(o)tok
-(e)tek
-()tk
-(j)tok
-itek
-itek
-(a)nak
-(e)nek
-(e)nek
-(j)k
-ik
-ik
> INDEFINITE CONJUGATION -OM, -EM, -M ARE FOR -IK VERBS ONLY!
> INDEFINITE CONJUGATION -ASZ. ESZ ARE FOR VERBS IN TWO CONSONANTS, IN -T AND
MONOSYLLABIC VERBS WITH LONG IN -T!
> INDEFINITE CONJUGATION -OL, -EL, -L ARE FOR VERBS IN -S, -SZ, -Z AND -IK VERBS!
> INDEFINITE CONJUGATION 2ND AND 3RD PP WITH A LINK VOWEL ARE FOR VERBS IN TWO
CONSONANTS, IN -T AND MONOSYLLABIC VERBS WITH LONG IN -T!
> DEFINITE CONJUGATION -JA, -JUK, -JTOK, -JK, -JK LOSE THE J IN ASSIMILATION WITH VERBS IN -S, SZ, -Z!
Copyright 2010, Lszl Ragoncsa THERE IS MORE TO HUNGARIAN THAN GOULASH! ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

319

PAST TENSE -T, -TT


THE PAST TENSE IS EXPRESSED WITH PAST SIMPLE (CONTINOUS), PAST PERFECT (CONTINOUS)
AND SOMETIMES PRESENT PERFECT
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
DEFINITE CONJUGATION
-(ot)tam
-(et)tem
-(t)tem
-(ot)tam
-(et)tem
-(t)tem
-(ot)tl
-(et)tl
-(t)tl
-(ot)tad
-(et)ted
-(t)ted
-ott; -t
-ett; -t
-tt; -t
-(ot)ta
-(et)te
-(t)te
-(ot)tunk
-(et)tnk
-(t)tnk
-(ot)tuk
-(et)tk
-(t)tk
-(ot)tatok
-(et)tetek
-(t)tetek
-(ot)ttok
-(et)ttek
-(t)ttek
-(ot)tak
-(et)tek
-(t)tek
-(ot)tk
-(et)tk
-(t)tk
> VERBS IN J L N NY R TAKE THE INDEFINITE 3RD PS FORMW WITH NO LINK VOWEL: -T
> THE EXTENDED SUFFIXES SHOWN IN THE BRACKETS ARE FOR GROUP 2 VERBS:
-VERBS IN TWO CONSONTANTS, -VERBS IN T, -MONOSYLLABIC VERBS IN -T
> GROUP 3 VERBS TAKE A LINK VOWEL ONLY IN 3RD PS INDEFINITE CONJUGATION: -OTT, -ETT, -TT.
SUCH VERBS ARE:
-VERBS IN -AT, -ET
-SZENVED, ENGED, TVED, TAGAD, FOGAD, MOND, KLD, KEZD
-HV, SZV AND VERBS WITH LONG OR SHORT I IN TWO CONSONANTS: TILT, IRT.  DEEP VERBS!
> THE VERBS LL, HULL SZLL CAN TAKE THE INDEFINITE 3RD PS FORM EITHER WITH OR WITHOUT A
LINK VOWEL:
-LLT, LLOTT: (LLOTT IS QUITE ANTIQUATED)
-SZLLT, SZLLOTT: (SZLLOTT IS QUITE ANTIQUATED)
-HULLT, -HULLOTT : (HULLOTT IS STILL IN USED ALONG WITH HULLT)
FUTURE TENSE
THE FUTURE TENSE IS EXPRESSED WITH FUTURE SIMPLE (CONTINOUS), FUTURE PERFECT (CONTINOUS)
AND
PRESENT CONTINOUS

Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni

INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
fogok
fogsz
fog
egy
filmet.
fogunk
fogtok
fognak

Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni
Nzni

DEFINITE CONJUGATION
fogom
fogod
fogja
a filmet.
fogjuk
fogjtok
fogjk

MAJD
filmet.
Majd nzem

Majd nzek
egy
a filmet.

> INFINITIVE + PRESENT TENSE DEFINITE OR INDEFINITE CONJUGATION OF THE AUXILIARY VERB FOG
> MAJD + PRESENT TENSE DEFINITE OR INDEFINITE CONJUGATION OF THE VERB

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320

IMPERATIVE MOOD -J
IMPERATIVE MOOD IS EXPRESSED WITH BASIC VERBS OR LET, SHOULD, HAD BETTER
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
DEFINITE CONJUGATION
-jak
-jek
-jam
-jem
-j OR jl
-j OR jl
-d OR jad
-d OR jed
-jon
-jen, -jn
-ja
-je
-junk
-jnk
-juk
-jk
-jatok
-jetek
-jtok
-jtek
-janak
-jenek
-jk
-jk
> VERBS IN TWO CONSONTANTS, VERBS IN T AND MONOSYLLABIC VERBS WITH LONG IN -T SUFFER
ASSIMILATION!
ASSIMILATION RULES:
S + J = SS
SZ + J = SSZ
Z + J = ZZ
T + J = TS (FOR VERBS -T WITH LONG )
T + J = SS (FOR VERBS IN -T WITH SHORT VOWEL)
J + J = JJ

CONDITIONAL MOOD -N
CONDITIONAL MOOD IS EXPRESSED WITH WOULD (OR PAST SIMPLE / PAST PERFECT IN IF-CLAUSES)
INDEFINITE CONJUGATION
DEFINITE CONJUGATION
-(a)nk!!!
-(e)nk
-(a)nm
-(e)nm
-(a)nl
-(e)nl
-(a)nd
-(e)nd
-(a)na
-(e)ne
-(a)n
-(e)n
-(a)nnk
-(e)nnk
-(a)nnk
-(e)nnk
-(a)ntok
-(e)ntek
-(a)ntok
-(e)ntek
-(a)nnak
-(e)nnek
-(a)nk
-(e)nk
> THE INDEFINITE 1ST PS FORM IS THE SAME (EXCEPT THE LINK VOWEL): -NK!!!
> VERBS IN TWO CONSONTANTS, VERBS IN T AND MONOSYLLABIC VERBS WITH LONG IN -T TAKE THE
CONDITIONAL SUFFIXES WITH A LINK VOWEL. ANY OTHER VERB TAKES THEM WITH NO LINK VOWEL!

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321

CASES (19)
ILLATIVE
INESSIVE
ELATIVE
SUBLATIVE
SUPERESSIVE
DELATIVE
ALLATIVE
ADESIVE
ABLATIVE
INSTRUMENTAL
COMITATIVE
TEMPORAL
TERMINATIVE
DISTRIBUTIVE TEMPORAL
DISTRIBUTIVE
MODAL
ACCUSATIVE
DATIVE
POSSESSIVE

-ba, -be
-ban, -ben
-bl, -bl
-ra, -re
-n, -on, -en, -n
-rl, -rl
-hoz, -hez, -hz
-nl, -nl
-tl, -tl
-val, -vel
-stul, -stl
-kor
-ig
-nknt, -nta, -nte
-nknt
-kpp, -kppen, -knt
-t (-ot, -at, -et, -t)
-nak, -nek
-m
-unk/-nk
-d
-tok/-tek/-tk
-ja/-je -juk/-jk

into
in
from (inside)
onto
on
from (the surface of)
to, towards
at, near, next to, beside
from (the vicinity of)
with
along with
at
until, up to
every, ons
as
as, -ly
direct object
for, to, indirect object
my
our
your
your
his/her/its
their

CONSEQUENT DECLINATION
CONSEQUENT DECLINATION MEANS THAT IF A WORD WITH A CERTAIN CHARATERISTIC REQUIRES A CERTAIN PLURAL FORM,
THEN IT WILL ALSO KEEP THAT CHARACTERISTIC IN THE ACCUSATIVE AND POSSESSIVE CASE UNLESS IT IS SUBMITTED TO
AN EXCEPTION RULE IN THOSE CASES.

EXAMPLE
THE NOUN NV IS WORD WITH THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED,
SO ITS PLURAL FORM IS NEVEK.
THE IN NV CHANGES TO E IN THE PLURAL FORM. IT

SUBJECTIVE CASE SINGULAR:


nv
SUBJECTIVE CASE PLURAL:
nevek
ACCUSATIVE CASE SINGULAR:
nevet
ACCUSATIVE CASE PLURAL:
neveket
FOLLOWS THAT THIS RULE WILL BE VALID IN THE ACCUSATIVE
POSSESSIVE CASE SINGULAR:
neve
CASE AND IN THE POSSESSIVE CASE.
SUB. S
SUB. P
ACC.
POSS.
TYPE
gyerek gyerekek gyereket
gyereke
REGULAR HIGH-VOWEL NOUN
llat
llatok
llatot
llata
REGULAR DEEP-VOWEL NOUN
tkr
tkrk
tkrt
tkre
DROP-VOWEL NOUN
darzs darazsak darazsat
darazsa
NOUN WITH THE LAST VOWEL SHORTENED
dj
djak
djat
dja
MONOSYLLABIC NOUN WITH LONG AND -AK PLURAL
hj
hjak
hjat
hja
IRREGULAR DEEP-VOWEL NOUN WITH -AK PLURAL
ujj
ujjak
ujjat
ujja
IRREGULAR DEEP-VOWEL NOUN WITH -AK PLURAL
-FLE, -FAJTA, -SZER = A TYPE OF, A KIND OF, LIKE
alma
almafle
almafajta almaszer
THESE SUFFIXES DO NOT REQUIRE IRREGULAR / EXCEPTIONAL
krte
krtefle
krtefajta krteszer
NOUN TO FOLLOW CONSEQUENT DECLINATION.
ld
ldfle
ldfajta
ldszer
WITH THESE SUFFIXES IRREGULAR NOUNS STAY REGULAR.
YOU SEE THAT THE A IN ALMA DOES NOT CHANGE TO , THE E IN KRTE DOES NOT CHANGE TO AND THE LONG IN LD
STAYS LONG.

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322