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  5. "Excuse me, is this bank open…

"Excuse me, is this bank open?"

Translation:Elnézést, ez a bank nyitva van?

September 7, 2016



Is van really needed here?


The words for open and closed in Hungarian behave as adverbs, not adjectives. So nyitva and zárva can not stand alone as the predicate like an adjective would, and they don't take plural or accusative or other endings. They must modify a verb, and that verb must be present in the sentence, even when it is van or vannak.

Ez a bank új - Is this bank new?

Ezek a bankok újak? - Are these banks new?


Ez a bank nyitva van? and Ezek a bankok nyitva vannak?


Great explanation, have a lingot :)


Great explanation indeed, but I have to beg to differ a little bit. While what jsiehler writes is generally true, "nyitva" and "zárva" sometimes like to stand on their own. They are special. You can actually say "A bank nyitva" or "Nyitva a bank", etc. Let's say it is incomplete, or idiomatic, but it is perfectly fine.

"Zárva a bank, nem tudunk pénzt váltani" - The bank is closed, we cannot exchange money.

But of course you are more than welcome to always say the "van"/"vannak" after "zárva" and "nyitva".

Now, when negating, that is, when it is not closed or not open, we use "nincs":

"Nincs(enek) nyitva/zárva a bank(ok)".

And, as we know, "nincs" stands for "nem van", so the implicit "van" is always there in this case.

For language enthusiasts, you can search for the plural forms of these words. They can be found in older texts, say, from the 19th century. "Zárvák" was very much used in the past, and, interestingly, without "van".
"A házak ajtajai zárvák." - The doors of the houses are closed.
But this is history, these forms are not used anymore.

Here is some more discussion on the topic:



Kérem a szerkesztőséget, hogy fogadják el a mondatot az alábbi szórenddel is: "Elnézést, nyitva van ez a bank?"


I like this discussion, but how would I know if I'm dealing with an adverb or not. Or, which other words that are in this course behave like nyitva or zárva. Or, like those two as vvesy explained, can any adverb just be treated as an adjective in coommon speech, making it just a minor point?


How do you know if you are dealing with a noun or not?
How do you know if you are dealing with a verb or not?
Simple, you learn words and their meanings. Some words are adverbs, others are nouns, verbs, articles, and so on.
True, some of these words can be created from other types of words, for example, a verb from a noun, but you don't have to know that, they will be different words that look similar but are different.
What I have described above is just colloquial usage (of a very few words), it is better to just ignore it for the time being and get back to it when you are more advanced in the language.


So, I'm sort of trapped in the duolingo universe for the time being in this, with a little bit of other help. The lesson is "adjectives" it contains somewhere around 60 new words. Some.are clearly nouns. The rest I'd be left to assume are adjectives given that's the title of the lesson. So given this constraint are there other adverbs that were presented as adjectives this way or not.

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