"The English book is on the table."

Translation:Az angol könyv az asztalon van.

August 15, 2016

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Any reason why "az asztalon az angol könyv van" is wrong?


I don't know whether what you suggest is technically possible. On the other hand, if you begin the sentence with an item other than the subject (such as 'az asztalon') then it seems to me you should also highlight it by placing it immediately before the verb: Az asztalon van az angol könyv.


Thanks, that makes sense. I wonder if there's a similar logic in Finnish. We use the latin based grammar, so maybe we're just not aware of it.


I have no idea, either.


Why isn't 'angolul' correct? I assume it's an English language book (or ought I to assume it's a book from England?).


The adjective "English" is angol. You can talk about the English book (az angol könyv) or the English language (az angol nyelv) and so on.

Angolul is really an adverb - basically "in English". When you say Beszélek angolul you're saying something more like "I speak in English" or - to use some broken English - "I speak Englishly." This adverb form can be used with verbs like speak, know, read, and write. But it can't be used to modify a noun like könyv.

Actually az angol könyv could have either meaning - a book in the English language or a book from England. If you wanted to specify "the English-language book" precisely, you could use az angol nyelvű könyv.


Then, there is also the adjective that specifies relation with England instead of the English language or people: angliai.

  • Az angliai autóm = "The car I use in England" which is not necessarily an English-made car.
  • Az angliai könyv = "The book from England" which is not necessarily an English-language book.

'-i' is an affix that can be added to nouns – including proper nouns – to form adjectives that mean 'belonging to or originating from a location.'


That makes perfect sense. Now that I hear it again it sounds more natural as well. Thank you for the clear explanation. :)

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