1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Hungarian
  4. >
  5. "I see a bus, not a car."

"I see a bus, not a car."

Translation:Én egy buszt látok, nem egy autót.

July 2, 2016



I got it wrong for omitting the second "egy". It seems like there have been many phrases where you can get away with dropping "egy" altogether and just use the accusative, so how's this one different?


Could someone please explain why and when egy is required? Or is Én buszt látok, nem autót actually correct, and Duolingo is wrong?


"Én buszt látok, nem autót" is a correct way to say it. Whether you use egy or not can be a matter of whether you care about the number of cars/buses, or the rhythm of the sentence.

"Én egy buszt látok, nem (egy) autót" sounds to me like a reply to someone saying "That is a big car over there." It is one car you're talking about.
"Én buszt látok, nem autót" sounds more like an answer to "Do you see a car coming somewhere?" You talk about whether a car is coming, but not really care how many.

Well, in any case the difference is minimal.


I put: Látok egy buszt, nem áutot but it got marked as wrong. Is it because of the order or missing én and second egy?


The word order is off. You make a comparison between two objects, so those objects need to be in focus, i.e. right in front of the verb.


"En" should not be employed


Is Egy buszt nem egy autot latok correct


I put Én látok egy buszt , nem egy autót. and was marked wrong, wouldn't this also be correct?


Neverwinter, you're comparing yourself with a car in your sentence. That doesn't make sense here. What you want to focus on in this sentence is the object that you see: you see a bus, you don't see a car. In that case at least one of those things needs to be placed right in front of the verb, in the focus position:

  • Én egy buszt látok, nem egy autót.
  • Én egy buszt, nem egy autót látok.
  • Buszt látok, nem autót.


Thank you! I forgot about the focus position, I really need to reread my grammar book.

Learn Hungarian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.