1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Hungarian
  4. >
  5. "A spanyol diákok az új üzlet…

"A spanyol diákok az új üzletnél sétálnak."

Translation:The Spanish students are walking by the new store.

August 23, 2016

15 Comments


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

"At" or "by" is an ongoing problem with this section. Not only does the answer only allow one when both would be acceptable, but often it designates only one when it is the OTHER that makes more sense! You basically have to memorise the answers in order to pass.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zsuzsi97194

It's been a year. Could someone please fix this here and other places where it seems that separate instructors who didn't speak with each other were writing these lessons?


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

at or by? It seems confusing when this suffix means at or when it means by. The difference in meaning (by vs at) can be very distinct and significant.


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

I agree. In this case "by the new store" makes a lot more sense in English, but in some other places in this exercise "by" also makes more sense and it is incorrect. Also "by" and "at" do not appear consistently in the clues. One time the clue is "at" and another it is "by", and the clue is not correct. Confused? Yeah, me too.


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

Keep reporting those incosistencies.
Strictly, the suffix -nál/-nél refers to the outer surface of a location, which is usually denoted with 'at' in English (at the bus - a busznál). But this translation is a bit troublesome, since 'at' can also mean 'inside' (at the house), or within the general area (at the airport), which are differently locationalised in Hungarian.


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

Most of the time when this confusion happens it is a sign of one of the languages not having the same distinction as the other. The difference between "at" and "by" is not very clear in many cases.

Btw, to add more confusion, the "-nál"/"-nél" suffix can also refer to "inside", if only in an indirect way. "I work at this company" is translated as "Ennél a vállalatnál dolgozom".


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

I always appreciate your explanations in these forums. Thank you!


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

Thank you, I am glad if I can help.


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

I love that you have so much patience with answering our questions. :D
I have another one: could a sentence like this also refer to the students passing the store? (Which would be very implied by the English "walking by".) Or would you need to express that differently in Hungarian?


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

You are really testing my patience. NOOO!!! :D But this course does sometimes. Let's just credit it to Hungarian being such a difficult language. :)

To walk by, I would say "elsétálnak az üzlet mellett".

"Az üzletnél" does not give any direction, any movement, only a fixed location. It does not make too much sense with a store, which is usually too small for a good walk. But you could say "a Dunánál sétálnak" - they are walking at/by the Danube. Now that does make sense, because you can walk for hours and still be at the Danube.
But a store is usually just a quick pass-by, therefore "elsétálnak mellette". The preverb "el-" provides the sense of moving away, or passing, and "mellett" is the "by" part.


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

The teachers never liked me. <.<
Thank you again for the quick and neat answer. <3


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

Linda38047 - to answer your question, I would need to know what exactly "entlang" means. If it is like the English "along", then... but then "along" is not really used for something short. You can't walk along a tree. Can you do it with "entlang"?
Anyway, the Hungarian "-nál"/"-nél" means near something, without giving any information on movement. And without any specific position relative to that something. It simply indicates a location, by identifying an object close by. If I tell you I'll wait for you at the river, then you need to come to the river to find me. If I wait for you at the big tree in the park, then you need to come to that big tree to find me.
If I say I will be walking "-nál" something, than that something needs to be big enough for me to walk alonside it. For example, up and down along the street front of a building.
Or else I can/need to use some other location indicator. And there are so many.
For example, a good word for some uses of "along" can be "mentén".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Linda38047

Thank you! Your examples are most helpful. Just a question: the German "entlang" could therefore be translated into both "nál" (when it is something long) and "el + mellette" (when it is small), right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/clairelanc3

At the new shop... what does it mean?


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

They are walking around in front of (or generally close by) the new store.

Learn Hungarian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.