"The bus is not in the front but in the back."

Translation:A busz nem elöl van, hanem hátul.

July 6, 2016

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...and this one requires the "van". eeeek


"Van" in this case doesn't just describe something, it refers to physically being somewhere.


Thank you very much! Maybe I will get this eventually.


Isn't "A busz nem elöl van, pedig hátul." right too?


No. "hanem" = "sondern" in German. "Pedig" doesn't have a meaning that fits here.


How might you explain this to someone not familiar with German?


Apparently, Spanish sino is similar to German sondern and Hungarian hanem.

In English, the closest is probably "but rather" or "but instead" - sometimes we just use "but", but(!) that word also has other meanings so it may be confusing to learn simply "hanem = but".

hanem implies a contrast -- "not A, but (rather/instead) B".


And what about pedig? Sorry for asking in a year


'Pedig' is used to make comparison between two or more listed things = Something is...A, 'and what concerns to' an other thing is B; or Something is.. A, an other thing is B, ..., 'and what concerns to' the last thing it is Z Pl.: Az autó piros, a bicikli pedig fekete. The car is red, and what concerns the bike it is black. Az autó piros, a bicikli fekete, a roller pedig rózsaszín. The car is red, the bike it is black, and what concerns the roller it is pink.

'Hanem' is used to make a contrast to a negative sentence = ..not A.., but (rather).. B Pl.: Az autó nem piros, hanem kék. The car is not red, but (rather) blue.


I normally put the "elöl" before the van but a couple exercises ago I was marked wrong and told to put it after the "van." Is there a rule?


There kinda is. Whatever detail is making the difference in the sentence, it should directly precede the verb (unless the given action itself is the crucial new information, of course it can't precede itself :D) Here in this example, we are talking about a bus (the first words make the topic - the shared knowledge that will be further discussed) and the important detail is its location. That's why the location-related information is the one preceding the verb. It's a natural assumption that "Something is somewhere" sentences have somewhere as new information. You can express, though, that it's that something which is at the given place - and not something else. A busz van elöl, nem a kamion. (Note that if something is negated, you can be sure it's the detail making the difference and therefore it should be focused - who would say "It is the bus that is not in front? Like, why don't you wanna say where it actually is if it's just a neutral detail?)


'Autobusz' should be a suitable alternative?


Why "meg" cannot be used here? What is the meaning of "meg"?


"Meg" has like 3 roles at the very least but I cannot see how any of them would be suitable here. It can be used as a contrasting "and" (then it's interchangable with "pedig"), as "plus" and as a verbal prefix mostly used for creating so-called telic verbs, I think you will see all of them eventually.

Contrasting: "The car is fast and/while/whereas the bus is slow." Both clauses follow the same structure. "Az autó gyors, a busz meg/pedig lassú."
"Correcting": "The car isn't slow but/{it is} fast" We barely have two clauses, we have a wrong detail that we negate and then propose the right detail. "Az autó nem lassú, hanem gyors."


I wrote "van nem elöl" Is word order important here?


Important enough to render that sentence wrong.

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