"Az énekesnő átköltözik egy másik országba."

Translation:The singer is moving to another country.

July 17, 2016

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Throughout this whole preverbs section I often think that the English translations are awkward because they include a translation of the preverb particle that just wouldn't usually occur in English. In a lot of cases English just isn't that precise about directionality (this is an issue with translating Russian motion verbs into English, too), or in other cases the English verb itself implies some sort of directionality that makes the extra word superfluous.

In this sentence, in real life, I would 100% translate it as "The singer moves to another country." I would use "to" rather than "into" (even though the ending is -ba) just because "move to a country" is what we say in this context, not "move into a country." The Russian army can "move into" a country, meaning "to occupy it", but ordinarily people just move to a country. I would omit the "over" because it doesn't add any meaning to the sentence at all, and not only that, the phrase "move over" usually means a small move, as in, "Move over one seat so that my friend can sit down."

I kind of understand a pedagogical reason for including some translation of the preverbs, but it's generating a lot of awkward, slightly foreign-sounding sentences that are just on the boundary where it's questionable whether to report them, but it feels wrong to type them in as answers.


I completely agree. I think they are just rough first translations that will be corrected over time. But they could be used in these discussions as literal translations, when dissecting the Hungarian sentences. Those little details give nuances to the meaning.

Many times these preverbs give a sense of a completed action, which is expressed completely differently in English.


It should certainly accept it without the "to", since this is correct. I think it's also mostly correct with "into", and that it should accept that one, too.

Basically, it's often the case with things like "to", "into", "onto" that there is a (semi-)literal translation and also a 'right' translation. It should always accept the right translation, and should accept the literal translation unless it is badly wrong.

  • 2007

I agree. I am a native English speaker with a Hungarian accent!


I agree the translations are very rough and awkward, and, yes, they will undoubtedly improve over time (thanks to constant reporting on the part of myself and others). Duolingo language instruction is a free service anyway, with this being a Beta version, so it is understandably full of bugs. And all Duolingo courses I have encountered seem to have weird English translations. Having said all that, the English sentences that I have seen (and have had to construct) in this course are inexcusably bad. I was under the impression, from the incubator updates I received, that the course developers had native English speakers on board to proof the content. Not so, I guess. What I am finding most frustrating is that I am spending much more time trying to get the English sentences wrong in exactly the right way (in order for them to be accepted so that I can advance) and reporting the errors, than I am actually spending learning Hungarian. At least my Hunglish is improving dramatically.


I agree entirely. What is inexcusable in my opinion is that the nitpicky translations leave me gun shy, reluctant to give any answer. Getting through a lesson should not be an exhausting process. This has been a disheartening, largely counterproductive experience.


Yes, memorising which slightly awkward or inaccurate English version is going to allow me to move thru the lesson is definitely getting in the way of actually improving my Hungarian...


I was very happy to see this idiomatic translation of the Hungarian. I did an independent lookup on "átköltözik," and I found that it was the verb for "move" as in "relocate" "change residence." I admit I was expecting something awkward, so this was a pleasant surprise. I would like to see them accept "relocate" in the correct answers, too.


Businesses relocate but individuals and families move.


I have a hard time grasping the difference between using átköltözik and just költözik. How would the meaning of this sentence chance if we dropped the át-?


It depends on the word order too...

"Az énekesnő átköltözik egy másik országba." fine

"Az énekesnő egy másik országba költözik." fine

"Az énekesnő költözik egy másik országba." This one feels like the singer is in the focus "Az énekesnő költözik egy másik országba." The singer moves, not someone else

or költözik is emphasized, "Az énekesnő költözik egy másik országba." then it is like she is moving right now.


Why is the át even there? El would work too, no? And still not be needed in the translation? Could she just plain költözik? Thanks!

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