Vocabulary (Review)

Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Notes

Unlock In-Depth Explanations & Exclusive Takeaways with Printable Lesson Notes

Unlock Lesson Notes and Transcripts for every single lesson. Sign Up for a Free Lifetime Account and Get 7 Days of Premium Access.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

Sziasztok, Lívia vagyok. Hi everybody! I’m Livia.
Welcome to HungarianPod101.com’s “Magyar nyelvleckék három percben”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Hungarian.
In the last lesson, we learned how to use the verb jön.
We will now jump into our lessons dedicated to question words in Hungarian. Our first one is the most commonly used question word, and that is the word mit, meaning "What."
So imagine you want to ask your friend "What are you doing?" How will you do it?
You will ask - Mit csinálsz?
[slowly] Mit csinálsz?
So let’s break down this question.
Mit is the question word to use in the accusative. So literally this translates to “what (thing) are you doing?”
Csinálsz is the 2nd person form of the verb csinál, which we already studied.
So, altogether it is Mit csinálsz?
“What are you doing?”
The question word stays the same in both formal and informal situations, so you don’t have to worry about it. Just pay attention to the correct verb conjugation.
The rule is simple - each time you want to ask a question starting with "What" and followed by a transitive verb, you have to use Mit.
For example with the transitive verb akar "to want", "What do you want" will be Mit akarsz? [slowly] Mit akarsz?
Also with the transitive verb eszik, "to eat", it will be - Mit eszel?
On the other hand, be careful when you use the word mit with the verb beszél, which means "to talk." In this case, the question word becomes miről, and we say Miről beszélsz? which is literally “About what are you talking?” or "What are you talking about?" [slowly] Miről beszélsz?
Before nouns, the question word in Hungarian becomes Mi.
So, for example, if you want to ask “What is this?” you can say Mi ez?
Or if you want to ask someone’s address - Mi a címed?
Be careful when asking about someone’s name. In the case of names, we use Hogy hívják? which means “What is your name?” in polite form.
To ask about someone’s job, we use the transitive verb dolgozni, meaning “to work”.
Since the verb is transitive, the question word becomes mit once again. Mit dolgozik? literally means “What do you work?”
Now it’s time for Livia’s tips.
Another difficulty in Hungarian is when you ask a question that could result in various possible answers. For example, "Which is your favorite one?" In this case, you have to use Melyik which is in fact the literal translation of "which" or "which one".
So Melyik tetszik? means "Which one do you like?"
Before ending this lesson, let’s go back and look at all the ways to translate "What" in Hungarian:
-Mit before transitive verbs as in Mit csinálsz? "What are you doing?"
-For verbs indicating “about”- Miről. Miről beszélsz? "What are you talking about?"
- Mi which is used before a noun as in Mi a címed? meaning "What is your address?"
- Melyik which is the correct equivalent of "Which" when you have to select one option among several others.
In this lesson, we learned how to translate the word "What" depending on the grammatical situation.
I know it is not always simple but I am sure you will remember these short rules!
Next lesson, we will talk about "Where" questions.
Do you want to know how to ask your friend where they live?
I’ll be waiting for you with the answer in the next Magyar nyelvleckék három percben.