"Birds do not crawl into the forest, but fly in."

Translation:A madarak nem bemásznak az erdőbe, hanem berepülnek.

August 12, 2016

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"A madarak nem bemásznak az erdőbe" - shouldn't the prefix be moved when it occurs after "nem"? and also after I have already said "be" in the first part of the phrase ("A madarak nem másznak be az erdőbe") wouldn't it be more natural to just say "hanem repülnek" without repeating be? Thanks


Prefixes are separated from the verb in a negative sentence, except when the verb itself is negated and contrasted with another one (even if it's only implied).

  • A madarak nem másznak be az erdőbe. -- The birds don't crawl into the forest. They stay outside of it.
  • A madarak nem bemásznak az erdőbe. -- The birds don't crawl into the forest. They do go in, but in another way.

And the second "be" is necessary too, to give direction to "repül", and to make it perfective.


Köszönöm szépen Shamarth!


Köszönöm a gyors és részletes választ


so, pretty much any sentence here that is negated can be correct with nonseparated prefix, if the context is right?


thank you. it s a very good clarification


I'm curious about a grammatical distinction.

English distinguishes between general statements ("Birds do ...") and specific statements ("The birds do ..."). Hungarian seems to always require the definite article when making general statements ("A madarak...), which makes it impossible (for me, anyway) to tell if this is a general statement about birds as a whole, or a specific statement about a particular group of birds.

Is it even possible to make such a distinction in the Hungarian language, without getting super-wordy to make things explicit?


that's what bugs me. I would not translate this with a madarak, because that, to me, implies a general statement such as birds fly, and this doesn't seem like it


It is quite crazy, why do I have to put A in the beginning? There is no article in the Ennglish version.


It is a general statement. Unlike English, the Hungarian language requires the definite adjective.


However, without context, we cannot know that this is a general statement (requiring the definite article a in the Hungarian) or a momentary statement about an event where birds are flying into the forest (which would not require the definite article a in the Hungarian).

Without that context, both interpretations of the English statement are valid -- as a general statement, or as a momentary statement. Thus, Duo must accept both the Hungarian with the definite article, and without.


I omitted the A before madarak because I have seen many examples of Emberek, férfiak, nők in similar sentences to this one


this sentence is odd


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