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  5. "Poor people do not go to res…

"Poor people do not go to restaurants."

Translation:Szegény emberek nem mennek étterembe.

August 17, 2016



Shouldn't there be a definite article before the word "szegény" since this is a general statement?


Now this is tricky, because the sentence is correct as it is. But you are also right, you could add the definite article. But it is optional.

So why is that?

This is just a feeling, but it may have to do with the type of statement. I am not sure I can explain but here are some general statements, for consideration:

Apples are sweet - Az alma édes. - The subject becomes singular and gets the "az".

I like apples - Szeretem az almát. - Subject implied, the direct object becomes singular and gets the "az".

Boys like apples - A fiúk szeretik az almát. - The subject stays plural and gets an "a", the object becomes singular and gets an "az".

People do not go to restaurants - Az emberek nem mennek étterembe. - The subject stays plural, gets an "a", the indirect object(??) becomes singular.

Hmmm.... trying to think here... Maybe one way the sentence is about the people, and the other way it is more about the restaurants. How about that?

Let's take another example:

"(The) cars don't go to the beach" - "Az autók nem mennek a tengerpartra." - This is about cars. What do cars do?

"Cars don't go to this beach" - "Autók nem mennek erre a tengerpartra." - What kind of beach is this? This is a kind of beach where cars do not go. This is about the beach.
And "autók" did not receive a definite article. Because the sentence is about the beach.

Does this make any sense?

Maybe something similar is at work in our sentence here with the restaurants. Restaurants are such places that are expensive, therefore poor people can't afford them.

But these are very tiny nuances of the language, it is very difficult to capture them. Any thoughts on this topic are welcome.


It actually makes a lot of sense that it might shift the focus to restaurants. :o I personally still feel like including the definite article and emphasising the poor people would be better. ;)

Something I would like to ask about is why "apple" becomes singular in "Apples are sweet." In the Tips and Notes for the Animals skill they talk about how definite articles are included in general statements, and here are the examples they gave:

Az oroszlánok húsevők. = literally ‘the lions carnivores’

The English sentence Dolphins are not fish.


A delfinek nem halak. = lit. ‘the dolphins not fish’

They used the plural form of these words, not the singular.


You can use the plural if you want, it is not illegal. It is just unusual. Let's say statistically it is more likely that someone will say it in the singular. And it is more likely with certain things, less likely with others.
Oh, and there are other considerations:

Szeretem az almát - I like apples. OK
Szeretem a körtét - I like pears. OK

Szeretem a lovakat - I like horses.
Szeretem a lovat - Hmmmm.... yummy!

Szeretem a csirkéket - I like chickens - they are cute!
Szeretem a csirkét - I like chicken - yummm!

Szeretem az embereket - I like people
Szeretem a fiúkat - I like boys
Szeretem a lányokat - I like girls

Az oroszlán húsevő - Lions are carnivores
A delfin nem hal - Dolphins are not fish

Az oroszlánok húsevők - may be closer to: THE lions are carnivores
A delfinek nem halak - may be closer to: THE dolphins are not fish

Etc. So it is not a strict rule.

If you study Spanish, see how they say "I like apples", you might find some similarities...


Creo que en español es "Me gustan las manzanas." Si eso no es lo que es, no sé cómo se dice en español. ;)

I'll have to keep all of this in mind...however, I'm going to try not to worry about it too much considering I don't believe I often use these kinds of statements when I write in foreign languages; if I ever need it, then I'll worry about it and learn the little details! :D I have a feeling a lot of my Hungarian knowledge will simply come from trial and error, as is the case with a lot of my languages!

Köszönöm mint mindig! :D


I thought it would be singular, me gusta la manzana, but at least they also use the definite article. :)
Yes, most of this stuff here should not be a concern at all, as long as you make yourself understood. And maybe it is a good idea to go through a course several times, be amazed at how much you picked up, and pick up some more.

Most is nagyon szívesen! :)


In this case more appropriate would be: Szegény emberek nem járnak étterembe. Járni/járnak is frequent (in this sentence: habitual) movement, whereas menni/mennek is mainly used as "are going". Furthermore: we don't put the restaurant into plural, since poor people generally don't go to even one restaurant.


The English says restaurants, whereas the Hungarian is étterembe, not éttermekbe, why is that?


Either is fine, but this is a general concept, so you're more likely to use the singular in Hungarian.


That's just the point. If the plural is not accepted, then 1. the English should not have the plural noun and 2. the word bank should provide the singular, and not the plural.


A szegény emberek nem mennek étterembe. en of Szegény emberek nem mennek étterembe. In my opinion both good answers depend on where you put the accent!


If éttermekbe is not accepted (as it was not in my case), then étterembe should be available in the word bank, which it is NOT.


As you can see now, the right answer on the top has already changed from éttermekbe to étterembe, as I recommended recently.


I put bemennek and it was marked wrong. It was the only difference between my answer and this one. In this case, the question says "to" and not "into" so I can understand the difference. However, is it always the case that "to" avoids the use of the preverb be so that it will always be, to follow this example, mennek rather than bemennek? Can you assure me that Hungarian is that consistent? (Yes, slightly tongue in cheek question).


No, it is not like that. There are very different forces at play here, they have nothing to do with "at". Emphasis, word order, and the lack of need for the perfective sense. All of these together mean that there is no need for a preverb here. The suffix at the end of "étteremBE" is quite enough to convey the meaning.

On top of that,
"mennek" means "they go",
"bemennek" means "they enter", "they go inside".

So, if you wanted to say "they do not enter restaurants", "they do not go into restaurants", that would be:
"nem mennek be étterembe".

Btw, to answer your question, yes, Hungarian is that consistent. However, English is not. So, there will be no consistent one-to-one matching between English and Hungarian. Only between Hungarian and its own consistent logic.

Just to show one example for the above:

"I am going to the city." - This can be be translated as both
"Megyek a városba."
"Bemegyek a városba."

There is no strong correlation between "to" and the use of a preverb.


------- szege'nyek doesn't = poor people ? . . .

Big 23 mar 20

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