"I am not climbing that mountain!"

Translation:Arra a hegyre én fel nem mászom!

August 11, 2016

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Would this work too?

"Én nem mászom fel arra a hegyre"

To me, it does not feel natural to say "Én fel nem mászom"


Yes, it is perfectly fine.

The official translation, "Arra a hegyre én fel nem mászom!", is also perfectly fine. But I understand why it might feel wrong. It is a special and very emotional sentence and word order, with extra emphasis, trying to say "Noooooo waaaaay am I going up that mountain!"


"extra emphasis"?

First because én is in there?
Secondly because nem is squeezed in between the (still selfemphasizing?) preverb+verb group? They are still attached to one another, but made it a threesome? I am not sure I saw this constellation so far. Detaching the preverb goes only with nem (or sem, I guess) otherwise it has to be placed behind the verb?


Yes, this is a special word order, kind of an emotional one.
But there are other cases when the preverb is split, stays in front, and there is another word (verb) in-between. They have a name, let's just call them splitter verbs. Here are a few examples:

"Fel akarok mászni" - I want to climb up
"Fel szeretnék mászni" - I would like to climb up
"Fel fogok mászni" - I will climb up

Also, your favorite "van" can be a splitter when used in a passive(?) structure:
"Meg van csinálva" - it is done
"El van intézve" - it is arranged

Or, if you want a climbing example:
"A macska fel van mászva a fára." - this is a classic bad usage of the structure, hopefully I don't have to explain why.

Oh, and you can go further with that emotional emphasis, adding an extra word:

"Arra a hegyre én ugyan fel nem mászom!"


Emphasis via extra words? Now that is something that should be easier than doing it by word order and verb permutations...

I would gladly say: "of course I see the utter nonsense", but I am afraid that you probably can provide a Turkish sentence and I would think it sounds alright.

mászva is already a problem. I can't find it in conjugation tables?

But I found a nice mászik sentence:
De a végén... Az Everest dönti el ki mássza meg... és ki nem.
But in the end... it is Everest who decides who climbs... and who does not.

I have some "verb splitters" explained in my grammar book: szeretne, volna, kell, tud, lehet, szabad, fontos, tilos, muszáj. Once I am through here, I have to dig into that book in depth.


"Szabad", "tilos", "muszáj" - I am not sure about those being splitters. Does your book have some examples?

"Mászva" - it is the passive voice version of the word. You could say
"The mountain has been climbed".
"The tree is climbed."

That "climbed" right there is the Hungarian "mászva".
But, in this incorrect sentence, the passive voice is attached to the cat, who performed the action. Instead of
"The tree is (or has been) climbed by the cat.",

it says "The cat is (or has been) climbed on the tree."

That's why it is wrong. It sounds more funny than wrong in Hungarian. But it is wrong.


Passive? I read that passive is not really used anymore in Hungarian? Maybe in the Bible and other old books.

This grammar book claims to provide A1-B2 level, but so many things are in it, with so few examples you have to be a genius to figure out how to say Hello in Hungarian... At least if it is your only source.

tilos and muszáj is simply "they function similarly" similar to what exactly? lol

Since the two examples before function differently:

fontos does not split the verb in the given example:
Fontos elmennem.
It is important to leave/ actually it says: It is important, that I leave. (Making this as emotional as it can be sounds like the perfect case though)

szabad does though:
El szabad mennem.
I am allowed to leave.


I am not sure where I read it more explicitly, but this book states: "... no acting person, no concious willingly done action, the process is in the center. Those sentences have a passivist coloring (connotation). There is no indepentant conjugation scheme for the passive..." (so actually says it is passive, or similar to actual passive, wherever there is a difference. And might, like the cases, just be a different perspective.) But mászva is exactly that? A conjugation for passive? According to Wiktionary "Határozói igenév" which sounds like Japanese and ends in Russian in my mind. But is a adverbial participle. Possibly not part of the course here and it rings a bell, but I always hated such terms...


You can read those kinds of things anywhere online. It took me five seconds to find an article stating that there is no passive voice in Hungarian. The thing is, there used to be a conjugation for that, but it is now archaic, not used. There are other constructions that took its place. For example, using an undefined plural third person: Instead of "it is done", you can say "they did it". That is, without mentioning the pronoun:
"It was finished last week" - "múlt héten fejezték be".
No pronoun, it is omitted when used as a substitute for the passive voice.

Another way is that határozói igenév:
"Az ajtó nyitva van", "a bank zárva van", "az ebéd meg van főzve", stb.
And of course "a hegy meg van mászva".
This participle is closest in meaning to the third form of English verbs.

And there is one more factor. The use of the passive voice is not the same in the two languages. There are situations where English prefers the passive but Hungarian uses an active form. And where Hungarian uses the passive, it does not mention the actor who performed the action. It can be done but it is not done.

"A hegy meg van mászva" - "the mountain is (or has been) climbed"

"The mountain was climbed by XY."
Here, Hungarian prefers the active voice:
"XY megmászta a hegyet."
And not:
"A hegy meg van mászva XY által."

("Által" is the postposition that would be used to reference the actor:
"By XY" = "XY által".
But this formula is really not used in Hungarian.)


Haha, an archaic version which is not used, passive that perfectly replicates English is possible but also not used and several forms of passive besides this still available in the repertoire of native speakers.

Yeah totally no passive in Hungarian...

Fascinating! But it also shows that this course teaches so little, beside the obsession with cases, and there is so much missing that probably would have fit the somewhat inflexible learning method here so much better.


Yes, I think so, too, less would have been more. They wanted to cover too much, focusing on very advanced stuff, and missed some very basic but much more useful stuff.
Anyway, I think any duolingo course can only be considered a good introduction.


fel nem mászom - is there a lesson on this placement? This is the first time I have seen this and I have just completed the first preverb area.


Aaahhh I see, köszönöm szépen a választ!


I wouldn't have said it either. Én arra a hegyre nem mászom fel


Accepted: "... én nem mászom fel!"


Once you said "az hegyre" meant that you were reaching the top. But who says so here?


"A hegyre" means that you will be on the mountain, not near it. But not necessarily on the summit, the very top. Just on the mountain somewhere.
But it may be understood to some that if one climbs a mountain he or she aims to reach the top.


Even though nothing is in the accusative case in this sentence, I notice that mászom is the definite conjugation. Is that because Arra a hegyre must mean a very specific mountain?


No, it is an "-ik" verb (third person singular is "mászik"). Such verbs have their first person singular indefinite match the definite "-(V)m" suffix.
So, this is actually indefinite, with a special suffix in the first person singular, due to it being an "-ik" verb.

(Note, no matter what, you need a definite direct object, in the accusative, for the definite conjugation.)


I went with "Nem arra a hegyre mászom.", reasoning that it was specifically that mountain that I was not climbing. I was quite prepared to go mountain climbing, but I'm not taking on that mountain.


Én nem mászok fel arra hegyre - should be accepted- same meaning but perhaps different emphasis.


Above, vvsey gave his blessing to "Én nem mászom fel arra a hegyre". You've used the indefinite conjugation where the definite is required and you have omitted the definite article between "arra" and "hegyre". But it is also a good idea to read vvsey's explanation of the "fel nem mászom" arrangement.

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