"The sun is shining."

Translation:Süt a nap.

October 18, 2016

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So, even though litterally "Süt a nap" = "The sun roasts", it's an idiom for "The sun shines". It is interesting because for me, the idea of the sun roasting has a negative connotation; it sounds like it's so sunny that the air becomes too hot and dry. On the other hand, the idea of the sun shining is quite positive; it makes me think of a warm and enjoyable weather.

Which one of the two idea does this Hungarian idiom implies? When do we usually use it? Is it more positive, negative, or quite neutral?


Interestingly, Finnish uses the exact same idiom, although the words themselves are not cognates:

Aurinko paistaa. = The sun is shining, but the verb "paistaa" normally means "roast" or "fry" when used with anything else than the sun.

So it looks like it's a finno-ugric thing. Slavic languages (from which Hungarian has borrowed a lot) don't have this idiom, they express "The sun is shining" using a verb that means emitting light, just like Germanic languages. (E.g. "Slunce svítí" in Czech, "Slnko svieti" in Slovak, or "Sunce sija" in Croatian)


As a native speaker I will add few details regarding the slavic languages - they commonly use the equivalent for "roast", resp. "burn", but they both (and some other also) express that it is REALLY hot (but this does not implies automatically an negative connotation). E.g.:

roasts (süt):

"Slnko pečie" / "Slnko pripeká" (Slovak)

"Slunce peče" / "Slunce připeká" (Czech)

"Солнце печет" (Russian)

burns (ég ?):

"Slnko páli" (Slovak)

"Slunce pálí" (Czech)

"Солнце горит" (Russian)

As far I know adequate examples are valid for example in Polish and another slavic languages...

The examples you wrote are used in context exactly as you mentioned - it is about emiting the light - they are normally used in neutral or positive context.


It's pretty positive – for me, it conjures up a pleasant sunny image. You can make it more intense by adding an adverb like forrón süt a nap or erősen süt a nap and there is an idiomatic phrase hét ágra süt a nap to say the sun is exceptionally bright and hot. But I can't think of other good verbs to express that kind of burning, stifling sunshine you're talking about on the negative side (maybe ég a nap, but even that can sound positive to me). Maybe some native speakers will chip in some more ideas. I'm quite curious now.


Why does "a nap" not come before the verb given that it's the subject? Is it just an idiomatic usage that the verb comes first in this case?


Süt is: "to shine"?


Well... Süt a nap.= The Sun is shining. Tortát sütök.=I am baking cake. Marhahúst sütnek a konyhában.=They are roasting beef in the kitchen. The base word is "süt", but in English, it depends on what the exact scenario is.


Pretty much only when used with a nap as the subject, I think. Think of it more as an idiom.

Its more general meaning is as a transitive verb meaning "bake" or "roast"


I have seen it used with "hold" (moon), too.


The sun is baking?


Süt a nap=Ragyog a nap=Csillog a nap=The sun is shining. Check this out!

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