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  5. "A titkárnő telefonál."

"A titkárnő telefonál."

Translation:The secretary is speaking on the phone.

July 14, 2016



Would "the secretary is calling" also be appropriate? Or is there another word for that?


Yes, there's another verb: hív.

The secretary is calling. = A titkárnő hív.


Then the dictionary is wrong.


Well, there are some contexts where it is appropriate to translate to call as telefonál. For example: "Peti called; he can't come with us tonight." = "Peti telefonált (or hívott), nem tud eljönni velünk ma este."

But if you call somebody, "telefonál" doesn't work. "I'll call you tomorrow." = "Holnap felhívlak."

And you can't use hív when you want to express that the subject is talking on the phone. In a sentence like the one above, telefonál will be understood as "talking on the phone", while hív will mean "being in the process of calling someone".


I reported my suggestion that they then accepted: "The secretary telephones." I'm glad, for that is very common English.


Today I also noticed a curious approach in this Hungarian course: The suggestions include no offer to see the verbs conjugated. I wonder if that is because Hungarian conjugation is rather challenging. Or maybe it is because this course is just in beta.


I believe the automatic conjugation is only present for a handful of courses (German, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese or so) that were developed first -- all the dozens of languages that came later use a different technological basis and are missing some things that this first group has.


Very helpful--thank you! And I just now checked the Hungarian word list (which one has to get to sneakily, anyway), and none of the verbs there that I checked are conjugated as they are in Italian and French.


telefonál - is phone calling?


I believe "telefonál" is the third-person form of the verb "to telephone" or "to speak on the telephone"--or even, probably, "To make a telephone call"--or, I would agree with you, "to call on the telephone." I hope that might help!


thank you for help - if I am right, they do not say telephone but only phone in English - but in the spoken language I can hear people say "I was phonecalling the whole day ..."


Actually, here in the U.S., you are right, we do mostly say "phoning" as a verb. But we also use "telephoning" and--you are right about this too--even "phonecalling." I hear all three, though mostly the first. I find Duolingo teaches not only the language I am learning but also the English I already know, especially through these nice comment conversations. You're very welcome!


yes - I looked it up and both expressions can be used - thanks a lot!


why "the secretary speaks on the phone" is incorrect?

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