Funfact: bocs also mean cub. Typically, bear cub.
That's why we can say:
Ezer bocs meg egy anyamedve
Which can mean, Thousand sorry, and a mother bear or A thousand bear cub and a mother bear.
Bocs is very informal, typically used among friends. If you did something very bad that needs a more serious apology, you should stick to 'Bocsánat', even if among friends (otherwise, 'bocs' would sound like a half-assed sorry). If you want to be cute (again, in an informal setting) you can say 'bocsi' or 'bocsika' for extra cuteness <3
By the way, the meaning is "forgiveness"
"bocsánatot kérek" - I ask for forgiveness - I am sorry, my apologies
"bocsánat" - sorry, excuse me, aplogies
"bocs" - sorry - very informal, shortened version
"aplogies" is a typo ;) Of course it is apologies. "bocsánatot kérek" is the most formal, it is often used to show respect, too.
Slang and chat lingo uses many forms usually based on "bocs" and starting with it. If a word starts with "bocs" you can suppose that it is a variant of "bocsánat" (Examples are "bocsi", "bocsesz", "bocsika" are very common, and the list is very far from complete. You can often hear them on the streets, etc.)
jani678913: check out the levels. If it is below 10 that is usually just a curiosity not real learning. Serious study often involves 20+ levels. In my case Italian is the language I really learn, and I am somewhat fluent in English and I practice now and then. All other languages are short acquintances driven by curiosity only. :)
Duolingo is a blast and a great way to learn! Any language can be a challenge.
Cosmo-pendant: "Any language can be a challenge" —indeed! Even your own mother tongue :D
For me Anyamedve sounds like half-turkish, half-slavic: why?
anne - (Turkish) - mother and medve = medved which is a root for all slavic variations for bear, and medved is derived from med which means honey.
It actually comes from old Turkish.. http://www.szokincshalo.hu/szotar/?qbetu=b&qsearch=&qdetail=1087
In Ukrainian it's "proBACS", the first thing that came into my mind. It's quite interesting to find similar words for me as a native Slavic speaker. Well, it's important to seek some associations.
While living in Hungary I never heard Bocs or bocsanat once. I only heard Bosci
Sometimes it is not too easy to hear the difference in a casual situation. It also depends on the region, average age and age distribution in the local subculture. "Bocs" is not rare but it is possible that in a university, a neighborhood or a region has the preference for "bocsi". But that is even more colloquial than "bocs" and it is better to avoid in formal ocassions.
okay, do what do you say when bumping into someone in the street? Duo had 3 words for "sorry" so far: Bocsánat/elnézést/bocs. what is more used?
"Pardon!" ;) It is the easiest to learn and it fits for your need when you're in doubt in a situation like this. We use it sometimes, not too often but it won't be strange. For other words, all of them suit for different circumstances. "Bocsánat" (actually "bocsánatot kérek") is generally used, a bit formal, but not overly. "Elnézést" (or "Elnézést kérek") is frequent, but more formal, while "bocs" is very informal.
You may want to know that "Elnézést [kérek]" means different thing actually, even though I use it for apologize. This literally means "[please] look away" as if the case wouldn't be happened if you won't see... The root of the expression means many things (like "indulge", "look away", "watch something for a long time", "miss" [a target for example], "don't pay attention" [in certain situations only], "look into the distance"). These meanings show that "Elnézést kérek" means actually a request of not noting what happened.
Bocsánat = like "I apologize", it is more formal
Elnézést=a bit less formal, but keeping a distance
Bocs ("bocsi" and many versions) = very colloquial, use only with closest friends and relatives.