"A férfi elmegy az erdőbe és vadászik."

Translation:The man goes to the forest and hunts.

September 26, 2016

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Wouldn't the literal translation be, "The man goes away into the forest and hunts." ?


"The man goes into the forest and hunts," You don't need "away".


A follow up question then. Why wouldn't one just say "A férfi megy az erdőbe és vadászik." if we don't need the "away". I though that was the point of the modifier "el".


It adds the perfective aspect to the verb, which means it implies completion of the action. If you just say 'megy' it only means that he's going there, but 'elmegy' focuses on the result: the action of going will certainly be completed, he's going to reach his goal.



el-, ki- expressing completion

There is a special use of coverbs. It is not quite as severe as meg's aspectual change, but it does express the completion of a task. olvas - read / olvasta a könyvet - he was reading the book / kiolvasta a könyvet - he read the book (all the way to the end of the book, he finished the book)

ment - he was going / elment - he went

Source: http://www.hungarianreference.com/Verbs/verbal-prefixes-coverb-coverbs-meg-el-ki-le-be-fel.aspx#completion


If you want to say he goes into the forest and has completed the action, why not use past tense and say he went into the forest? If you have preverbs to show completion what do you use the past tense for?


Forzafiori - compare "he walks" with "he is walking" in English. The first is complete - but present tense.


Maybe we don't, but do we really need all thise away and over... as well?


Actually there is a closer English translation: The man goes out to the forest and hunts.


And here no translation at all for "el" why isn't " goes over into the forest" accepted?


The use of elmegy suggests away. Is it the case that you use it to emphasize the fact that the person is going away from the place that they previously occupied? Any movement involves el because it's always away from where the person was and can be used almost randomly. In Hungarian you can drop it in almost anywhere but in English we only need to use it when we feel the need to say that the movement is away. Is that right because, like the others, I find it a bit confusing.


I suspect it also implies he got to the forest rather than just wandering off towards the forest.


When do we use -be vs -ben?


If there is movement (literal or figurative) use -be/-ba. If they are just in a space use -ben/-ban.

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