"I am watching you, not her."

Translation:Én téged nézlek, nem őt.

August 9, 2016

14 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GerSzej

I had: nézlek, nem öt. rejected. You have to use teged?

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jsiehler

In this case, I think so, since the point of the sentence is to contrast téged with őt. Also note that Duo will probably reject öt (five) in place of őt (him/her).

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vvsey

Exactly, you can't just omit the very word you are trying to.

See, I left out "emphasize". :)

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GerSzej

I thought that latlak was only used when the object is the second person. If the object is the third form, then I should use latom. therefore teged seemed somewhat redundant to me. You can say szeretlek, not necessarily teged szeretlek, no?

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vvsey

That part is correct, "látlak" and "szeretlek" clearly identify both the subject and the object. But they do not emphasize either on their own.
If you want to emphasize the subject, you must not omit the subject.
If you want to emphasize the object, you must not omit the object. The verb does not substitute for either, it just implies them.

So:

Olvasok - I read
ÉN olvasok - It is I who reads

Látlak - I see you
Látlak téged - I see you - "téged" is not necessary
Téged látlak - I see YOU - It is you that I see
Nem látlak - I don't see you
Nem látlak téged - I don't see you - "téged" is not necessary

Nem téged látlak - It is not you that I see
Téged nem látlak - (I may see everyone else but) you I do not see

In these last two sentences, if you omit "téged", how do you know what is negated?

Nézlek - I am watching you.
Nézlek téged - I am watching you - "téged" is not necessary
Téged nézlek - It is YOU that I am watching

Téged nézlek, nem őt - I am watching YOU, not HER.

You get the point.

Now, but "Én" can be omitted, as the whole sentence is about "me", and there is not necessarily an emphasis on it.

And the second verb was omitted, as it is a repetition, even though in a different person. The whole sentence would be like this:

"Én téged nézlek, nem őt nézem."

The second verb almost feels wrong if it is not omitted. The second repeating verb is usually omitted. And it does not need to match in person or number. Only it has to be the same verb.

"Nem én olvasok, hanem ők (olvasnak)".

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GerSzej

This explanation is extremely useful. Thank you. You should write a book, I will buy it.

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vvsey

You are very kind, thank you. I am glad if I can help.

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vvsey

BTW, another question here, on the English sentence. Who is not watching whom? I am talking about "her".

Is it me not watching her:

"Én téged nézlek, nem őt",

or, is it her/she not watching you:

"Én nézlek téged, nem ő".?

Or would you say this latter one differently, maybe to avoid confusion?

"I am watching you, not she"
"I am watching you, she is not"

Any thoughts on this?

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jsiehler

To put Én nézlek téged, nem ő into English without confusion, the cleanest solution might be to turn it around: "She isn't watching you, I am."

-

"I am watching you, not she" runs into a real tangle of problems. Among other things: Despite the fact that "she" cannot possibly be an object, the sentence still sounds more like it means Én téged nézlek, nem őt".

Basically, I would say, English speakers can sometimes have a very hard time hearing something in the final position of a sentence as a subject. It's easier to hear this "I am watching you, not she" sentence as meaning "I am watching you, not her" - but spoken with a grammatical error - than it is to hear it for what it actually means. Mizinamo is accurate when he says that the "correct" version sounds stilted and so we mentally "correct" it to the simplest possibility that sounds like something normal.

This problem is alleviated by putting a verb after the pronoun - then the subject really sounds like a subject! That's why my solution "She isn't watching you, I am" works well.

So I would also say that your sentence, "I am watching you, she is not" is also both correct and will be heard and understood correctly. For me - and I can't explain why - it does not put as much emphasis on contrast (Not she but I) as the version I offered. It is more like two loosely connected statements. But this can be changed by the use of stress when speaking.

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

In modern colloquial English, for many speakers, it can be either.

In conservative English, her must be accusative, and it can only mean "I am watching you; I am not watching her". The other version would have to be I am watching you, not she (which for some speakers today would sound stilted).

I am watching you, she isn't is one way to disambiguate.

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vvsey

Thank you both for the great insight!

Maybe, just maybe, in the not so distant future when most Americans will have learned Hungarian at a good conversational level, one will be able to say "Let me just say it in Hungarian, to be perfectly clear...". ;)

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CYOUNG05

Creepy

April 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TLB27957

Am I the only one who noticed this sentence has nothing to do with colour?

April 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

The others may well have seen the sentence in a different unit.

Duolingo sometimes shows you a sentence from a completely different unit from the one you are currently studying.

April 18, 2017
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