Introduction to the Hungarian language

Introduction to the Hungarian language
Table of contents:
Some facts Hungarian letters Some useful words and phrases The most important words Numbers - számok Ordinal numbers - sorszámok Pronouns - névmások Days of the week - a hét napjai Transport, traveling - közlekedés, utazás Restaurant, food - vendéglő, élelmiszer Smoking - dohányzás Post office - posta Entertainment - szórakozás Illness/emergency - betegség/baleset Other useful sentences Basics of Hungarian grammar The Hungarian anthem (Ferenc Kölcsey: Hymnus) Outer links: A free Hungarian Course for Beginners Magyaróra - Hungarian lessons at intermediate to advanced level Hungarian/English - English/Hungarian dictionary An earthy guide to Hungarian slang Information about Hungary and Budapest

First of all, I'm not a linguist, not even an arts scientist. I'm trying not to use the technical terms of grammar (since I don't know them in English :-) If you search for a grammar book on Hungarian language, one of your first hits may be "Teach Yourself Hungarian". However, I personally do not recommend this book. Why? Just two reviews (borrowed from Teach Yourself Hungarian could do a little better. It's great if you're going to visit Hungary and not gain full proficiency, but it seems to fail being an effective grammatical text. First mistake -- it starts off with dialogs, afterwards giving you a lengthy vocabulary list. The book may be for you if you can learn off of phrases alone,

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The dialogues have very good content and the recorded versions are excellent -. The same applies to the "American" language nowadays. idiomatic words. even if it is very hard to do. so we have some words coming from the Slavonic languages of our neighbours. fellows in trouble. The word for brother/sister comes from "test" (body) + "vér" (blood). This is why the sound of our words can be similar to Turkish and there are lots of common words in the two languages.) We began our "career" at the Ural mountains and left our closest relatives there appr. 2 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . too. Or "brothers in arms" are "bajtársak". (lennen@erols. The tapes also have questionand-answer sections where you can practice your spoken Hungarian. though. we understood some words. anyway. so it's worth learning it.bme. Due to the years of Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and Austria as a neighbour. and it is very useful. that is. may it be suggested to try something else. If you are truly looking to 'teach yourself'. but you can try to learn it. while "garázs" (coming from "garage") means parking place. meaning brothers/sisters are from the same body and are from the same blood. I met some Kazahs. 1500 years ago. We don't have relatives in Europe. and our ancestors passed through today's Turkey. While travelling to the Carpathian Basin. Hungarian language is full of very expressive. It's better than the average Teach Yourself books.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus.elte. I was really not able to understand even a word in Finland.sch.shtml#important rather than taking apart each phrase and looking at a language word-by-word. We also got some words during 150 years of Turkish Insufficient exercises and shallowness in the explanations of grammar are the biggest problems with this book. Finns and Estonians belong to the Finnish group thus only the structure of grammar is common in Finnish and Hungarian.) We have lived in the Carpathian Basin for 1100 years. Use it as a supplement to a more thorough text.easy to listen to and not at all dry or stilted. Our grammar is very different from most European languages. (As much as an Italian understands some German. Closer relatives are the Kazahs. just watch out! For example "(autó)szervíz" (coming from "service") means garage. And if you hear a word you think you've recognized. lots of German word were imported and melted into Hungarian but they are alien and considered undesirable to use. so if you like that style you can expect satisfaction from this. Hungarian is a very nice language. (Though the English expression is just as expressive Some facts The Hungarian language belongs to the Ugrian group of the Finno-Ugrian language family. (siehler@cs.

"kórós" means something with weed. etc.bme.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. "guy" etc. etc. "feed". etc. "show". etc. or similar to the first syllable of "dirty" is a long "u" (as in "new". A word means something very different with/without accent.). is the long "ü". as in the English "sir".) is a long "o" (as in "wall". and some special consonants: 3 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . etc. similar to "hot" or is near to the usual "a" (as in "bar". For example "koros" means old. "her". "loop". "aim". as in French "vue". as "Kühl" or "Tür" in German.shtml#important Hungarian letters The strict Hungarian alphabet: The full Hungarian alphabet (including foreign letters): We have some special vowels: a "dot" is much more closed than in most other European languages.) is equal to the German. or "allure" in French The letters ("o" with double acute accents) and can be found only in the Hungarian alphabet.) is equal to the is the long "ö". ("u" with double acute accents) It is very important to use the accents right.sch. as "Böhm" or "schön" in German. "kóros" means diseased/pathological. etc. is a long "i" (as in "teeth". but it's a bit longer is similar to the first vowel in "make".

etc. soft "l".bme. etc.) ly is "l"+"y". soft "g". like in French "Jules". gy is "g"+"y".) sz is like "s" in English ("spam". zs is "z"+"s". etc. "gy"+"gy" = "ggy".shtml#important c becomes "k" or "s".sch. if you see "tt". Double consonants are really pronounced long. etc. etc. "yogurt". dzs is "d"+"z"+"s". "jive". it never cs is like in "cheep". etc. dz is "d"+"z" is like "ts" (like in "itsy-bitsy") or like German "z" (like in "Zahn"). like in "during". "spy".Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. Finally. "Jacques". "shy".) ny is "n"+"y". etc. like in English "Tudor". like in "new". etc. soft "t". "yogurt". "due". only the first character is doubled in writing: "sz"+"sz" = "ssz". soft "n". Some useful words and phrases: The most important words: yes = igen no/not = nem Good morning! = Jó reggelt (kívánok)! Good day! = Jó napot (kívánok)! Good evening! = Jó estét (kívánok)! Good night! = Jó éjszakát! Good bye! = Viszlát!/Viszontlátásra! Hi! (for one man) = Szia! Hi! (for more than one person) = Sziasztok! I understand = értem I don't understand = nem értem 4 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . j is like "y" in English ("youth". etc. s is like "sh" in English ("short". For long consonants. like in "jungle". almost equal to "j" ("youth". the accent is always on the first syllable when speaking. you should say "t+t". "chat". "tube".) ty is "t"+"y".

Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. please? = Tudna segíteni? How much is it? = Mennyibe kerül? help = segítség where? = hol? which way/in which direction? = merre? when? = mikor? how? = hogyan? now = most later = később urgent = sürgős day = nap week = hét [derived from "seven" (days)] month = hónap morning (early) = reggel morning (before noon) = délelőtt noon = dél afternoon = délután evening = este night = éjszaka today = ma tomorrow = holnap the day after tomorrow = holnapután yesterday = tegnap the day before yesterday = tegnapelőtt to eat = enni to drink = inni to sleep = aludni square = tér street = utca road = út museum = múzeum post office = posta travel office = utazási iroda right/to right = jobb/jobbra left/to left = bal/balra 5 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .shtml#important please = kérek/kérem Thanks! = Kösz/köszi! Thank you! = Köszönöm! Thank you very much! = Köszönöm szépen! Don't mention it!/My pleasure (as a reply for "Thank you") = Szí Excuse me! = Elnézést (kérek)! I'm sorry! / I beg your pardon! = Bocsánat / Bocsánatot kérek! Could you help me.sch.

.hu/info/magyar.sch.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. 40+x negyven.bme..shtml#important straight = egyenesen in front of = szemben and = és Numbers ...számok: 0 nulla 1 egy 2 kettő (két) 3 három 4 négy 5 öt 6 hat 7 hét 8 nyolc 9 kilenc 10 tíz 20 húsz 30 harminc 40 negyven 50 ötven 60 hatvan 70 hetven 80 nyolcvan 90 kilencven 100 száz 1000 ezer 10^6 millió 10^9 milliárd 10^12 billió 10+x tizen..... 30+x harminc. 11 tizenegy 12 tizenkettő 20+x huszon. 200 kétszáz 300 háromszáz 2000 kétezer 6 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .

bme.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. 2197 kétezer-(egy)százkilencvenhét Ordinal numbers ..sorszámok: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9 th th első második harmadik negyedik ötödik hatodik hetedik nyolcadik kilencedik tizedik tizenegyedik tizenkettedik huszadik százegyedik 10 11th 12th 20th 101st 100th századik 1000th ezredik 10^6 th milliomodik 2197th kétezer-(egy)százkilencvenhetedik Pronouns .hu/info/magyar.névmások: the = a/az a = egy I you he/she it (this) it (that) we you én te/ön ő ez az mi ti/önök for me for you for him/her for it (this) for it (that) for us for you nekem neked/önnek neki ennek annak nekünk nektek/önöknek with me with you with him/her with it (this) with it (that) with us with you velem veled/önnel vele ezzel azzal velünk veletek/önökkel 7 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .shtml#important .sch..

= Kérek egy helyjegyet ...a hét napjai: Monday = hétfő Tuesday = kedd Wednesday = szerda Thursday = csütörtök Friday = péntek Saturday = szombat Sunday = vasárnap they ők for them ("te" = informal. utazás: open = nyitva closed = zárva bus = (autó)busz ship = hajó tram = villamos train = vonat When does it leave? = Mikor indul? When does it arrive? = Mikor érkezik? Give me a ticket to . please. "ön" = formal) nekik with them velük Days of the week .Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus...közlekedés..bme.. please.sch.... = Kérek egy jegyet . traveling .re! Give me a seat reservation to .re! (railway or coach) station = állomás railway station (bigger) = pályaudvar harbour = kikötő airport = repülőtér ticket office = pénztár Where can I buy tickets? = Hol lehet jegyet váltani? ticket = jegy slow train = személyvonat even slower train (post train) = postavonat faster train = sebesvonat express train = gyorsvonat first-class = első osztály second-class = másodosztály porter = hordár 8 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .

hu/info/magyar.shtml#important luggage = csomag left-luggage = csomagmegőrző lost&found = talált tárgyak (osztálya) washroom. gas = benzin unleaded = ólommentes gas (diesel oil) = gázolaj/dízelolaj oil = olaj service station = szervíz out of order = nem működik / üzemen kívül Restaurant. food . toilette = WC entrance = bejárat exit = kijárat woman = nő man = férfi girl = lány boy = fiú parking garage = garázs parking place = parkoló gas station.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus.vendéglő. garage = benzinkút petrol. élelmiszer: restaurant = vendéglő/étterem café = kávéház sweet shop = cukrászda menu = étlap waiter = pincér to pay = fizetni soup = leves meat = hús pork = sertéshús beef = marhahús poultry = szárnyas/baromfi chicken = csirke fish = hal salt water fish = tengeri hal fillet/steak/slice = szelet fried/grilled meat = sült hús goulash = gulyás(leves) garnish = köret vegetable = zöldség 9 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . filling station.bme.sch.

Introduction to the Hungarian language boiled vegetables as garnish = zöldségköret vegetable-dish = főzelék bean = bab string beans = zöldbab tomato = paradicsom potato = burgonya/krumpli cabbage = káposzta green pepper = zöld paprika lettuce = saláta [as vegetable] salad = saláta [as food] stuffed paprika = töltött paprika fruit = gyümölcs grape = szőlő pear = körte apple = alma plum = szilva peach = (őszi)barack apricot = sárgabarack watermelon = (görög)dinnye melon = sárgadinnye lemon = citrom tart (cake) = torta ice cream = fagylalt/jégkrém pastry/cake = sütemény juice = gyümölcslé syrup = szörp water = víz mineral water = ásványvíz beer = sör wine = bor schnaps = pálinka cup = csésze glass = pohár bottle = üveg milk = tej yogurt = joghurt coffee = kávé tea = tea bread = kenyér toast = pirítós (kenyér) roll/bun = zsemle scrambled eggs = rántotta 10 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .

shtml#important boiled eggs (soft) = lágy tojás boiled eggs (hard) = kemény tojás ham = sonka sausage = kolbász frankfurter = virsli butter = vaj cheese = sajt jam = gyümölcsíz/dzsem/lekvár honey = méz sugar = cukor chocolate = csokoládé salt = só vinegar = ecet mustard = mustár red pepper = pirospaprika black pepper = bors onion = hagyma Smoking .bme.dohányzás: Do not smoke!/Smoking is forbidden! = Tilos a dohányzás! non-smoking = nemdohányzó to smoke = dohányozni match = gyufa cigarette = cigaretta cigar = szivar pipe = pipa tobacco = dohány Post office .hu/info/magyar.sch.posta: letter = levél mail = levél / postai küldemény registered mail = ajánlott levél parcel = csomag air mail = légiposta telegram = távirat stamp = bélyeg postcard = levelezőlap picture postcard = képeslap 11 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus.

. I don't understand/speak Hungarian.sch. = tűzoltóság police = rendőrség Other useful sentences: Would you like to see my stamp collection? [to hint at getting her to your room] = Megnézed a bélyeggyűjteményem? Would you go to dance? = Jössz táncolni? May I invite you for a dance.bme.. please.Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus.betegség/baleset: doctor = orvos surgeon = sebész pharmacy = gyógyszertár hospital = kórház ambulance = mentő fire dept. lady? = Hö = Egy darabos őszibarackos joghurtot kérek..shtml#important Entertainment . How to get to .hez? How far is it? = Milyen messze van? Where is it? = Hol van? 12 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM .. felkérhetem egy táncra? I want a fruit yogurt with peach pieces.szórakozás: theatre = színház Opera Theatre = Operaház concert = hangverseny cinema = mozi/filmszínház ticket = jegy free entrance = ingyen(es) admission fee = belépődíj Illness/emergency . = Nem értek/beszélek magyarul.? = Hogyan jutok el a .

in contrast to English. = I will go to the cinema tomorrow. Holnap megyünk moziba? = Will we go to the cinema tomorrow? Holnap moziba megyünk? = Will we go to the cinema tomorrow? Megyünk holnap moziba? = Will we go to the cinema tomorrow? etc. For example: holnap = tomorrow moziba = to the cinema megyek = I (will) go Holnap moziba megyek.sch. and no gender for words The order of words is not fixed. or "Monday". since the subject is known from the inflection: I read = olvasok = én olvasok you read = olvasol = te olvasol he/she reads = olvas = ő olvas The Hungarian language is "additive" which means that we meld some letters to the end of the word.. The only capitals are for names/places. So there is no "he" and "she". Moziba megyek holnap. = [default] Holnap moziba megyek. = I will go to the cinema tomorrow. "I".shtml#important Basics of Hungarian grammar We don't have genders in our grammar. and for the first letter of a sentence. Megyek holnap moziba. = I will go to the cinema tomorrow. (It's sure. Elmegyek moziba holnap. There is also the same order for questions: Holnap moziba megyünk. This is why Hungarian people occasionally say "he" for a girl or vice versa. = I will go to the cinema tomorrow. etc. = We will go to the cinema tomorrow. Unlike in several major languages.) Én megyek holnap moziba. Generally personal pronouns are used only for emphasis.bme. Usually the sequence of the words reflects decreasing importance. = I will go to the cinema tomorrow. "English" in English).Introduction to the Hungarian language http://impulzus. Some examples for inflection: table = asztal 13 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . the first letters of certain words are not capitalised (as in German.

etc.bme. Please note that Hungarian is a very rich language. We have lots of synonyms for a word. sometimes a vowel is inserted: tables = asztaloK. For example. 2 asztal. 200 different words describing the breed and the colouring of a horse. A nice grammatical example: "fiaiéiból" where: fi (archaic for "fiú" .shtml#important on table = asztalON to table = asztalHOZ onto table = asztalRA. We don't use plural for units and multiple things with their quantity given: 100 forint. Last modified at 14 of 14 4/25/12 5:22 PM . To make pronunciation easier. etc. a hyphen is compulsory: ideg-összeroppanás (nervous break-down). If a new expression is put together from at least three words and it would be longer than 6 syllables. there are appr.boy) = son fia = someone's son fiai = someone's sons fiaié = something belonging to/owned by someone's sons fiaiéi = more items owned by someone's sons fiaiéiból = from the above mentioned items Back to the page about Hungary This page is maintained by Ákos Dömötör (dome <at> impulzus <dot> com). 10 kg.sch. Plural is indicated by adding a "k" at the end of the word. We create "new" words by adding some of them also (compounds). just like "public transport" = "tömeg+közlekedés" but it is not so elaborate as in the German to the Hungarian language http://impulzus.

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