Little things regarding translation


Hungarian likes to use adverbs of manner when English prefers constructions with ’to’:

I’m proud to present our new products.
Büszkén mutatom be az új termékeinket.

I’m happy to participate on this event.
Boldogan veszek részt ezen az eseményen.

I’m very disappointed to hear that you’re leaving so soon.
Igen csalódottan hallom, hogy ilyen korán távozol.

That’s not always the case, though. You can also say:

Büszke vagyok, hogy bemutathatom az új termékeinket.
Boldog vagyok, hogy részt vehetek ezen az eseményen.
Csalódott vagyok, hogy ilyen korán távozol.

Note! In the ’hogy’ sentences we usually attach -hat, -het (can, may) to the verb as a way of politeness. That is true especially when I can/may/am allowed to do something.

JÓL not always WELL

The one to one meaning of ’jól’ is ’well’.

Jól érzi magát. – He feels well.

Jól haladnak a tanulmányai.
Her studies are going well.

However ’jól’ can also be used to emphasize something. In that case, you cannot translate the Hungarian sentence literally.

Jól ellátta a baját.
He gave him a good beating.

Jól megnézte magának azt az üzletet.
She got a good look at that shop.

Ezt jól megcsináltad! Mi ütött beléd?
You’ve really done it now! What’s gotten into you?


The meaning for ’hellyel-közzel’ is ’sporadically, once in a while’. ’Hébe-hóba’ also means ’once in a while, once in a blue moon’. But don’t be afraid of what the dictionary says, translate the sentence in English the way you would say it as a native English speaker.

Hellyel-közzel el tudom mondani, amit megtanultam.
I can tell you by and large what I’ve learned.

Hébe-hóba nem árt kicsit szórakozni.
It doesn’t hurt to have fun every now and then.


The word ’pont’ as a noun means ’point, dot; full stop’. As an adverb it can mean ’exactly, right’. Sometimes the English verb ’to choose’ is a great help to translate this word.

Tíz pontot kap a Griffendél.
Gryffindor gets ten points. (Ten points to Gryffindor)

Rajzolj pontokat a papírra.
Draw some dots on the paper.

Pont is kell a mondat végére.
You need to put a full stop at the end of the sentence.

Pont jókor érkezett a segítség.
Help arrived just in the nick of time.

Pont ezt mondták az előadáson is.
That’s exactly what they said at the lecture.

Annyiféleképpen megoldhattad volna a problémát, te meg pont a mostoha apádhoz mész segítségért?
You could’ve solved the problem in so many ways, and you choose to go to your step-father for help?

4 comments on “Little things regarding translation

  1. Lou says:

    Great post, especially about the adverbs of manner


  2. Michael says:

    Amazing blog


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