Hungarian Language

HungHungarian Languagearian belongs to the Finno-Ugric group of Uralic languages, along with some minor Siberian languages (such as Khanty and Mansy), as well as Estonian and Finnish. The ancestors of the Hungarians had their own runic writing system (akin to Turkic runic writing).

The first literary record with written Hungarian words can be found in the deed of foundation for the Abbey of Tihany from 1055 CE. The first printed book written in Hungarian was published in 1533. The Calvinist minister Gáspár Károli accomplished the first complete translation of the Bible into Hungarian in 1590. Since the late 18th century, the Hungarian language has undergone several phases of standardization.

Hungarian is a difficult language for English speakers to learn. It is an agglutinative language, which means it uses suffixes instead of prepositions. It contains 14 vowel phonemes, most of which have a long and short version, differentiating meanings such as kor (age) and kór (disease). Most of the 25 consonants may also be lengthened by doubling them: hal means fish, whereas hall is to hear.

The basic Hungarian lexicon is estimated to comprise around 100,000 words. About one fifth of all Hungarian word roots are of Finno-Ugric origin, while a number of word roots are of Slavic, Turkic, Germanic and Latin origins.

There are no similarities to other languages that would provide a shortcut to understanding Hungarian; most international words are translated into Hungarian. For examle számitogép means computer. But most importantly, the Hungarian language has two words for love (szeretet and szerelem).

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