"Monkeys climb down from the wide tall trees."

Translation:Majmok másznak le a széles magas fákról.

November 1, 2016

This discussion is locked.


Why not lemásznak?


Because the emphasis is on the subject: "majmok".
Q: Who climbs down from the trees?
A: Monkeys.

If you want to emphasize the verb, you can do that. But then the subject would most probably get a definite article, at least in Hungarian:

"A majmok lemásznak a széles, magas fákról."
Q: What do (the) monkeys do?
A: They climb down from the trees.


and how are we supposed to tell that the emphasis is on the monkeys from the english sentence where it is ambiguous?


That is a good question, sometimes it is hard to tell, so some variants should be accepted when translating back from English to Hungarian. I imagine this sentence was first written in Hungarian, with Hungarian-to-English translation in mind, so they did not cover all the possible variants that come from the ambiguity of the English sentence at the reverse translation.


Yeah, two years later they still haven't fixed it.


This is a special case.

Majmok másznak le a széles magas fákról.

Autók jönnek ki az erdőből.

Note that the subject is something with no article.

We went into a long discussion about article, no article, and detached preverbs at this sentence: "Szép, fehér madarak repülnek át a tengeren."



And it is just as confusing.


OK, I wrongly reported the fact that lemásznak wasn't accepted. Thank you Zsuzsi and it's a point that needs to be rammed home. Subjects WITHOUT an article will take the focus and the verb reflects that accordingly.


why majmok and not A majmok? Wasnt it mentioned somewhere before that hungarian places definite articles in front of general clauses?


Yes, that is true, but this sentence (talking about the Hungarian sentence here) is, either:

  • not a general statement or
  • not a general statement about monkeys. It would be a statement about the trees!

If it were a general statement about monkeys, then the monkeys would have their definite article, and the sentence would look similar to this:

"A majmok lemásznak a széles, magas fákról."


So a majmok lemasznak was neutral and majmok masznak le emphasises the monkeys? Thanks!


There is no such thing in Hungarian as a 'széles fa'. You might say 'a vastag törzsű fákról'.


Why not lemasznak ?


See earlier discussion above.

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