"A könyvtár előtt nyolcvanhárom bicikli áll."

Translation:There are eighty-three bicycles in front of the library.

July 23, 2016

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Compared to English, both Russian and Hungarian tend to "overspecify" verbs of motion and also verbs of being-in-a-place (stand, hang, for example, saying the bicycles stand in front of the library. I thought the Russian course here on Duo did a superb job of managing this and accepting the characteristically more neutral English versions like "There are eighty-three bicycles in front of the library."

The comments in the Russian course's Tips & Notes here mention this, and it's worth keeping in mind when you think about how to translate sentences like this one:



Good idea. It is true, "áll" is used very frequently to specify the location of things, without any special emphasis on the standing position. It is just used as a general verb, but mostly for things that could be described as standing. My house stands in this street, there stands my horse, my desk stands here, there stands a tree, where does your car stand, etc. For other things, "van" is used.

Also, "Hogy áll a munka?" or "Hogy állsz a munkával?" actually means "How is the work going, what's the current situation?", "What is the current standing?". (You can also say "Hogy megy a munka?").

"Áll" also refers to the non-working or non-moving state of things. When traffic is at a standstill, "áll a forgalom". When nobody is working, "áll a munka". When my watch has stopped, "áll az órám" or "megállt az órám". When the bathroom is flooded, "áll a víz a fürdőszobában". When the engine stopped, "áll a motor". Etc. All of these should definitely not be translated as standing.


I knew this because I've seen sentences with áll translated into sentences with "is." So I translated this one into "83 bicycles are in front of the library." Rejected because it should have said "...are standing..."


Just did this one again tonight - still won't accept "83 bicycles are in front of the library... (I did report it, probably a second time.)


There has to be a way in the Duo engine to test users on Hungarian's verb of motion specifics instead of just accepting English's non-specific variants... the first thing that comes to mind is to give some sort of context to a sentence so that the user knows whether the verbal action is static, inwards or outwards and test them on specifically the preverb they need to use, or in the case of how different things exist in space, test them on which verb needs to be used (áll, fekszik, ül, etc.). I think this could be fairly easily accomplished with multiple choice questions instead of asking the user to write the whole translation for the sentence. Something like that.


With cars they accepted "are parked" for áll. I think it should allow it for bicycles. I'd rarely say bicycles "stand" somewhere. They'd either just be - or be parked.


As a native Hungarian speaker I'd rather say "a bicikli áll" and for cars too: "a ház előtt áll az autóm"


I think Judit was referring to how the English should be phrased. I'm not questioning the use of "áll" in Hungarian, and I don't think anyone else is. It's just that we don't usually say "the bike is standing in front of the house." (Though if someone did say that, I think I'd understand it - it's just not typical.)

I like vvsey's examples of ways that "áll" is used to express that something isn't moving, such as traffic, or a clock. Those make sense to me - in English we say "standing still" in those situations, so it's not so different.


I see. Fair enough :)


Szeged, university library any time :)


"In front of the library are standing eighty-three bicycles" is also correct, Duo. :)


That word order isn't standard English and it sounds awkward. I would say "In front of the library, eighty-three bicycles are standing." But yes, the progressive should also be accepted.


Isn't 83 eighty-three? Why does it tell that it's wrong?


What was your entire answer?


You have to write numbers out in full.


Not always. I've done plenty of number exercises in this course where both the numerical and written-out forms were accepted.


What is a tree bicycle?


Three :) Or was it a joke?

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