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  5. "A tanár az iskolában a gyere…

"A tanár az iskolában a gyerekekhez beszél."

Translation:The teacher talks to the children in the school.

November 11, 2016



Simply a point of clarification. I answered this "The teacher talks to the children in the school". I think I understand why it was marked wrong - it depends on where "az iskolában" appears in the sentence. My answer has a subtle difference in English as well:

The teacher talks to the children in the school - emphasizes where the teacher is speaking to the children.

The teacher in the school talks to the children - emphasizes which teacher is talking to the children (implicitly indicating that there is more than one teacher being discussed).

Would the same difference be indicated between:

A tanár a gyerekekhez beszél az iskolában.

A tanár az iskolában a gyerekekhez beszél.


No, it would not be done like that. Hungarian would use a structure that is literally something like "the in-the-school-being teacher/children":
"az iskolában lévő tanár" - the teacher being in the school
"az iskolában lévő gyerekek" - the children being in the school

And, if you wanted to emphasize that you are talking about a specific teacher, you would also modify the word order to place that in front of the verb:
"Az iskolában lévő tanár beszél a gyerekekhez." - It is the teacher in the school who talks to the children. Which teacher? The one in the school.
If that emphasis is not needed, then you can stay with:
"Az iskolában lévő tanár a gyerekekhez beszél." - The teacher, who happens to be in the school, talks to the children.


On one hand that makes sense, however the sentence above as presented already (in English) emphasizes that the teacher is in the school. The "lévő" structure makes sense to me, but seems extraneous, in this situation.

How would you change things to emphasize where the teacher is talking to the children.


Well, that is very easy, by placing what is emphasized in front of the verb:
"A tanár az iskolában beszél a gyerekekhez."
But let's be clear. This is not "the teacher in the school"! This is "the teacher", period. The teacher is already identified as the one teacher. And that one specific teacher talks to the children where? In the school.
If you want to do "the teacher in the school", "the teacher who is in the school", then you have to do "az iskolában lévő tanár". Or, "a tanár, aki az iskolában van" - the teacher who is in the school.
The logics of the two languages are very different here, as you can see.


OK, so it's more about moving the verb to get the desired emphasis, rather than "az iskolában". I think I get it. It sounds, then, like the placement of the verb in the sentence can do the same thing that your two examples does as well, then? With "beszél" at the end of the lesson's sentence, it changes the purpose of "az iskolában" to indicate where the teacher is, rather than to emphasize where the talking is taking place.


Not exactly. The location "az iskolában" is just the general location of the whole action in the sentence above. It is not specifically tied to any other word. Everyone is in the school, and this is what is happening.

"A tanár az iskolában a gyerekekhez beszél."

I would suggest that you rather take it relative to the verb. That is, talk not about where the verb is placed, talk instead of what is placed in front of the verb. Otherwise you will get confused.
Just to illustrate my point:

"A tanár az iskolában a gyerekekhez beszél."
"A tanár a gyerekekhez beszél az iskolában."

The important thing is, what is in front of the verb. Not where the verb is located!
Although there is a difference in emphasis between these two sentences, the main emphasis is on "a gyerekekhez" in both.

Similarly, the previous sentence can be rearranged:

"A tanár az iskolában beszél a gyerekekhez."
"A tanár a gyerekekhez az iskolában beszél."

I can continue:
"Az iskolában beszél a tanár a gyerekekhez."
"Az iskolában beszél a gyerekekhez a tanár."
"A gyerekekhez az iskolában beszél a tanár."

In all five of these sentences, the main emphasis is on "az iskolában". Because that is what is in front of the verb.


Nagyon szívesen! :)


Got it! You better-phrased what I was getting at. Understood, and thanks!


This is unnatural in English, it should be "The teacher talks to the kids at the school." or "The teacher talks to the kids at school."


Yes, it should say "at school", not in the school. I am still waiting for the program to get up to speed


I translated this as "the teacher talks to the children in the school" but my translation was marked wrong. Should I report this?


This is now the main answer!


Nope. As per the discussion, that is a different sentence in Hungarian.


In the Hungarian, why is "az iskolaban" placed between the teacher and the children. I'd have thought that it would be better as the topic (at the start) or relegated to the end of the sentence. Where it's positioned, it seems to be giving the location of the teacher, which is hardly likely to be different to that of the children to whom she is talking (or have I overlooked the impact of COVID-19?). Could this be a way of saying "the school teacher"?

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