OCCURRENCE IN A WIDER AREA – POSTPOSITIONS
This is the fourth group. These occurrences are expressed by means of postpositions which differ from suffixes in certain aspects:
1. The most important aspect is their meaning. A postposition by itself has its own meaning in contrast to a suffix.
2. Suffixes and endings have one syllable, while postpositions have two.
3. Suffixes and endings have two or three forms which have to comply with the vowel harmony. Postpositions have one form only.
POSTPOSITIONS FOR ADVERBS OF PLACE
Here is the list of the postpositions determining a place/direction. They have to be learned according to the three directions phenomenon, too.
On the whole, while in English one has to remember what preposition follows or precedes an adverb of place, Hungarian expresses these things in one word. Naturally, it is a must to learn the suffixes in accordance with the directions. And that goes as follows:
For the question Hova? the suffix is: -á, -é
For the question Hol? the suffix is: -tt, except körül
For the question Honnan? the suffix is: -ól, -ől, -ül
HOL? – WHERE?
előtt – in front of
mögött – behind
fölött – above
alatt – underneath, under, beneath
mellett – next to, near, beside
között – between, among
körül – around
HOVA? – WHERE TO?
elé – in/to front of
mögé – behind
fölé – over
alá – under, below, beneath
mellé – next to, near, beside, by
közé – between, among
köré – around
felé – towards
HONNAN? – WHERE FROM?
elől – from (the front of)
mögül – from behind
fölül – from above, from the top of
alól – from under, from below, from beneath
mellől – from (the vicinity of), from beside
közül – from between; of; among
felől – from (a direction)
HOL? – HOVA? – HONNAN?
előtt – elé – elől
mögött – mögé – mögül
fölött – fölé – fölül
alatt – alá – alól
mellett – mellé – mellől
között – közé – közül
körül – köré – ———-
——- – felé – felől
NOTE! The postposition felé (towards) has no version for position Hol?, just for Honnan? = felől (from). The postposition körül (around) has no version for from a direction Honnan?, just for Hova? = köré (around)
Watch them in sentences. Maybe that’s more help for you to understand their use.
A ház előtt állok.
I’m standing in front of the house.
POSITION > Where? – in front of = Hol? – előtt
A fa mögé bújok.
I’ll hide behind the tree.
TOWARDS A DIRECTION > Where to – behind = Hova? – mögé
A madár a fészek fölé repül.
The bird flies up over the nest.
TOWARDS A DIRECTION > Where to – over = Hova? – fölé
A kocsi mellől rohan el.
He’s running away from the car.
FROM A DIRECTION > Where from? – from = Honnan? – mellől
Az emberek között érzi jól magát.
He feels good among people.
POSITION > Where? – among = Hol? – között
A föld alatt ás a vakond.
The mole is digging under the soil.
POSITION > Where? – under = Hol? – alatt
A Föld a Nap körül kering.
The Earth orbits around the sun.
POSITION > Where? – around = Hol? – körül
Vihar közeledik a város felé.
The tempest is approaching (going towards) the city.
TOWARDS A DIRECTION > Where to? – towards = Hova? – felé
So Hungarian takes directions seriously. We express exactly when being at a place, going to a place and coming from a place!
I know it seems like a big jumble now, so I would recommend learning the suffixes -á, -é / -tt / -ól, -ől, -ül. Then practise the postpositions above and try to create simple sentences for yourself. You can do that by writing a little bit far-fetched sentences in English.
A család az asztal körül ül. – The family is sitting around the table.
A család az asztal köré ül. – The family sits down around the table.
A levél a fa alatt van. – The leaf is under the tree.
A levél a fa alá esik. – The leaf falls under the tree.
A levél a fa alól elszáll. – The leaf flies away from under the tree.
I know it’s difficult because English uses quite the same adverbial prepositions for both Hol? and Hova?, but as you might have realized by now, Hungarian is an impish language.
Cheer up! And keep stuffing your head with my blog entries. 🙂 🙂 🙂
More about postpositions next time. Bye now!