Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Simone: Hi, Simone here! This is Absolute Beginner, Season 1, Lesson 2: Asking “Where Are You From?" in Hungarian. In this lesson, we’re going to learn more about the verb “to be” and nationalities. In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask about other people’s nationalities.
Gergo: Sziasztok! That’s right, the investigation into other people’s business continues in this episode.
Simone: So, where does this conversation take place?
Gergo: We’re still on the train with Balázs and Anne, so you can think of this lesson as the continuation of our previous dialogue.
Simone: OK, let's listen to this carefully.

Lesson conversation

Balázs: Honnan jöttél? Angol vagy?
Anne: Nem angol vagyok. Amerikai vagyok. És te?
Balázs: Én magyar vagyok. Tetszik Budapest?
Anne: Igen. Budapest szép.
Balázs: Amerika is szép.
Anne: (smiling) Szerintem is.
English Host: Let's listen to the conversation one time slowly.
Balázs: Honnan jöttél? Angol vagy?
Anne: Nem angol vagyok. Amerikai vagyok. És te?
Balázs: Én magyar vagyok. Tetszik Budapest?
Anne: Igen. Budapest szép.
Balázs: Amerika is szép.
Anne: (smiling) Szerintem is.
With Translation
Balázs: Honnan jöttél? Angol vagy?
Balázs: “Are you English?”
Anne: Nem angol vagyok. Amerikai vagyok. És te?
Anne:“I am not English. I am American. How about you?”
Balázs: Én magyar vagyok. Tetszik Budapest?
Balázs:“I’m Hungarian. Do you like Budapest?”
Anne: Igen. Budapest szép.
Anne: “Yes. Budapest is beautiful.”
Balázs: Amerika is szép.
Balázs: “I’m glad (you say that). America is very beautiful too.”
Anne: (smiling) Szerintem is.
Anne: “I think so too.”
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Simone: Why does this language sound like something from Mars for me Gergo?
Gergo: Ah, a common question. This is because Hungarian has almost nothing to do with other European languages. The closest, and only, relatives in Europe are Finnish and Estonian. And I don’t understand a single word of those.
Simone: It’s not an Indo-European language, right?
Gergo: Yes, that’s correct. It is in a language family called Finno-Ugric, which is in turn a member of the Uralic family.
Simone: That still sounds like Martian.
Gergo: This is one of the reasons why language buffs are always trying to come up with new theories about what other languages Hungarian is related to.
Simone: And what do they come up with?
Gergo: Well, keep in mind that the most credible theory is still the Finno-Ugric. Others, however, say that it could be related to Japanese, Sumerian, Etruscan, Aramaic, and Turkish.
Simone: That is a quite a list.
Gergo: Yes, and I’m sure there are more.
VOCAB LIST
Simone: Now let’s take a look at the expressions in this lesson.
Gergo: honnan?
Simone: “from where?”
Gergo: hon-nan?
Gergo: honnan?
Gergo: jöttél
Simone: “you came”
Gergo: jöttél
Gergo: jöttél
Gergo: angol
Simone: “English”
Gergo: an-gol
Gergo: angol
Gergo: vagy
Simone: “you are” (inf.)
Gergo: vagy
Gergo: vagy
Gergo: nem
Simone: “no”
Gergo: nem
Gergo: nem
Gergo: amerikai
Simone: “American”
Gergo: a-me-ri-ka-i
Gergo: amerikai
Gergo: tetszik
Simone: “like”
Gergo: tet-szik
Gergo: tetszik
Gergo: szép
Simone: “beautiful”
Gergo: szép
Gergo: szép
KEY VOCABULARY AND PHRASES
Simone: That’s a lot. Let’s break these expressions down and help the listeners learn a bit.
Gergo: Ok. We’ll start with “where are you from?”
Simone: The very first sentence in the lesson.
Gergo: Honnan jöttél?
{pause}
Gergo: Honnan jöttél?
Simone: “Where are you from?”
Gergo: Honnan means “from where?”, it is a question word. Jöttél means “you came”, a past tense verb.
Simone: This is still informal, right?
Gergo: Right, they are getting acquainted slowly but surely, and anyway, young people normally use the informal speech.
Simone: How would you ask someone older though?
Gergo: Please repeat this super polite question. Ön honnan származik?
{pause}
Gergo: Ön honnan származik? Ön is “you, formal”, származik is “originates.”
Simone: So this was the formal one. How do we answer?
Gergo: It is a good idea to use the verb “to be” in the answer, and we’re going to cover those soon, in the grammar section.
Simone: And is there any other vocab then?
Gergo: There is the verb tetszik. Even though it is at some point translated as “like,” the most literal translation is “find something beautiful” or “is beautiful for someone.”
Simone: How about an example instead of this technical lingo? How do you say “I like your hair.”
Gergo: (mumbles) Tetszik a hajad.
Simone: Louder!
Gergo: All right. Tetszik a hajad.
{pause}
Gergo: Tetszik a hajad. Hajad is “your hair.”
Simone: See, that wasn’t hard, was it?

Lesson focus

Simone: So, Gergo, what’s the grammar point for today?
Gergo: We’re going to talk about the verb vagyok, again. I hope all of you remember. It means: “I am.”
Simone: Sure. Why this again?
Gergo: Last time we visited the question “to be” in first and second person singular and used nouns and adjectives with them.
Simone: Very quickly, first person singular is...
Gergo: Vagyok. Vagyok. In a phrase: Tanár vagyok. Tanár vagyok.
Simone: "I’m a teacher." Second person singular...
Gergo: Vagy. Vagy. The same phrase again: Tanár vagy. Tanár vagy.
Simone: “You are a teacher.” So far so good. Third person now?
Gergo: The verb “to be” in third person singular is van. Van.
Simone: “He is.” Or “she/it is.” No gender in Hungarian.
Gergo: Yes, it is always van. The problem with the third person singular is, that in similar sentences, you don’t actually use the verb, but instead, you put the personal pronoun before the noun or adjective you want to use in your statement.
Simone: So using tanár, or “teacher” again...
Gergo: Ő tanár. Ő tanár.
Simone: “He/she is a teacher.” No verb in this one.
Gergo: Exactly. Just to make this a hundred percent clear, I’ll say all three again, so you can compare.
Simone: I’m ready.
Gergo: Tanár vagyok.
Simone: “I’m a teacher.”
Gergo: Tanár vagy.
Simone: “You are a teacher.”
Gergo: Ő tanár.
Simone: “He’s a teacher.” OK, so no verb this time. How does this tie into our lesson today?
Gergo: Because there is a very similar sentence in the lesson, where we use an adjective. Budapest szép. Budapest szép.
Simone: “Budapest is beautiful.” I see. No verb, but there is the subject given, Budapest.
Gergo: Shall we try some more adjectives?
Simone: Why not? Handsome?
Gergo: Yes I am.
Simone: No, I meant... ugh, very funny.
Gergo: “Handsome” is jóképű.
Simone: So in third person singular it is:
Gergo: Ő jóképű. Ő jóképű.
Simone: Let’s try “fat” now.
Gergo: Ő kövér. Ő kövér.
Simone: How was that again in first person?
Gergo: Kövér vagyok. Kövér vagyok.
Simone: And that is what you guys should remember from today...
Gergo: That was not cool.
Simone: (smiles) ...and tune in next time. Bye.
Gergo: Sziasztok.

115 Comments

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HungarianPod101.comVerified
Tuesday at 6:30 pm
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Hello listeners!

Honnan jöttél? Try to answer in Hungarian!

HungarianPod101.comVerified
Wednesday at 3:11 am
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Kedves Zhuldyz!


Thank you for this question! You are completely right!


No need to use "vannak" in third person of singular form! We simply say : Ők diákok!


Please don't hesitate if you have any other questions!

Best,

Dorottya

Team HungarianPod101.com

Zhuldyz
Tuesday at 6:07 am
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Hello! Thank you very much for this lesson! I have just one question (maybe somebody has already asked it, though)


With the third person singular we don't use "van", but does it apply to plural form? We have to say, for example, "ők diákok vannak"? Or we can just say "ők diákok"?


Thank you in advance!

HungarianPod101.comVerified
Wednesday at 3:19 am
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Hey Walt,


Actually, it would be pretty hard to find word combinations like this.. It really is not common to hear them!

Unfortunately, names are not in the dictionary, but if you look for the word "hattyú", the double tty is pronounced the same way!


As for the other combinations, the rule of double consonants is not true because the letters csc/zsz etc do not exist. So in this case you simply make a short stop between the two words and do your best to pronounce them! It is pretty hard otherwise (it doesn't happen very often actually).?


Szép estét,

Dorottya

Team HungarianPod101.com

Walt
Monday at 2:03 am
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Thank you for your detailed answer, Dorottya.


Have any examples of the combinations "t ty", "c cs", "z zs" and "g gy" been recorded in your lessons or the vocabulary lists? If so, please tell me where to search so that I can hear them. For example, where can I find a correct recording of your name?


And to take this one step further, what happens with the combinations

"ty t"

"cs c"

"zs z"

"gy g"

?


Köszönöm szépen,

Walt

HungarianPod101.comVerified
Sunday at 6:47 pm
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Szia Walt!


Thank you very much for your questions!


You are completely right, when the word finishes with an "s" (so the sound "sh" in English), the following sz will be doubled in pronunciation. So, " ő is szép" will be pronounced isszép like a double ssz. The reason why s is transformed here is simply because in hungarian to double the letter "sz", we add a second "s" to make "ssz" . So when we pronounce it quickly, it becomes impossible to differentiate these two sounds for Hungarians ?.


The same logic is true for

"t" followed by "ty"

"c" followed by "cs"

"z" followed by "zs"

"g" followed by "gy".


I hope I answered your question! If you need any help, please don't hesitate!


Good luck,

Dorottya

Team HungarianPod101.com

Walt
Monday at 9:37 am
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Please forgive me if you have covered these questions somewhere in the lessons.


When I hear the word "is" in the sentences "Én is" and "Szerintem is", the consonant "s" sounds like the combination "sh" in English (and some other languages). But in the sentence "Amerika is szép", the "h" seems to disappear. Ultimately it sounds as if the "s" and the following "sz" are run together like the doubled consonant "ssz" (if doubled is the correct terminology). This leads to two questions:


1. Does this always happen at normal speed when "s" is followed by "sz"?


2. If so, will this sort of change always take place every time one of the tricky (for foreigners) consonant pairs cs, sz, zs, ty, gy and ty is followed by the second letter in the pair (and similarly for z and dzs) at normal speed?


Köszönöm,

Walt

HungarianPod101.comVerified
Thursday at 5:39 pm
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Szia Fabiano!


Nagyon szépen köszönjük! :flushed:


Good luck for discovering our language and please don't hesitate if you have any questions!

Thank you,

Dorottya

Team HungarianPod101.com

Fabiano
Sunday at 3:35 am
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This website is totally awesome! Great content! Congratulations all!

HungarianPod101.comVerified
Saturday at 9:12 pm
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Szia Max,


Üdvözöllek az oldalon, Dorottya vagyok!:sunglasses:


Budapestről jöttem, magyar vagyok.


Sok sikert!

Dorottya

Team HungarianPod101.com

Max Schubert
Monday at 8:13 pm
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Amerikai vagyok. Nagymama Magyar.