Appendix:Hungarian verbal prefixes

Co-VerbsEdit

Hungarian verbal prefixes often function as bound morphemes. They are more precisely referred to as verb particles or co-verbs which change the meaning or aspect of a verb.

  • When fel- (which indicates an “upward motion”) is used with hív (“to call”), it produces felhív, denoting “to call up someone”.
Felhívod Mártát? – Are you going to call Martha?

In a number of syntactical settings related to focus and emphasis, co-verbs get separated from the verb and are placed either before or after it within the sentence. Some examples of grammatical setting of co-verb displacement are:

  • The verb is preceded by an interrogative:
Mikor hívod fel Mártát? – When are you going to call Martha?
  • Simple negation of the verb:
Nem hívom fel Mártát. – I will not call Martha.
  • In the use of the imperative:
Hívd fel Mártát! – Call Martha!
  • In some infinitive constructions:
Fel kell hívni Mártát. – It is necessary to call Martha.

Another example: meg- adds a perfective aspect to the verb, modifying its meaning to indicate that the action of the verb has proceeded or will proceed until its ultimate conclusion.

Bold letters are used to indicate verbal prefixes that are productive in the sense they can be added to existing verbs to coin new forms that are not listed in dictionaries and yet they are understood by native speakers (such as agyon- + nyaggat, bele- + kacsint, elő- + szökken, félre- + pislant, körbe- + száguld, közbe- + kotyog, mellé- + kucorodik, neki- + vezet, utána- + kutyagol).

A, ÁEdit

BEdit

CsEdit

  • (cserben) (now written as a separate word, although it behaves as a prefix with its own verb)

E, ÉEdit

  • egybe-
  • (egyet-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb)
  • el-
  • ellen- (limited in use)
  • (ellent-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb)
  • elő-
  • előre- (see also the adverb előre)
  • (észre-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb)

FEdit

HEdit

I, ÍEdit

  • ide- (see also the adverb ide)
  • itt- (limited in use; see also the adverb itt)

JEdit

  • (jól-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the adverb jól)
  • (jót-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the suffixed noun jót)
  • (jóvá-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the suffixed noun jóvá)

KEdit

LEdit

MEdit

NEdit

  • (nagyot-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the suffixed noun nagyot)
  • neki- (see also the adverb neki)

NyEdit

  • (nyilván-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the adverb nyilván)

O, ÓEdit

Ö, ŐEdit

REdit

  • rá- (see also the adverb )
  • (rajta-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the adverb rajta)
  • (rendre-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the suffixed noun rendre)
  • (rosszul-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the adverb rosszul)

SEdit

  • (síkra) (now written as a separate word, although it behaves as a prefix with its own verb)

SzEdit

TEdit

U, ÚEdit

  • újjá- (limited in use)
  • újra- (see also the adverb újra)
  • után- (limited in use; see also the adverb után)
  • utána- (see also the adverb utána)
  • (útba) (now written as a separate word, although it behaves as a prefix with its own verb)
  • (utol-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb)

VEdit

  • (végbe-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb)
  • (véghez) (now written as a separate word, although it behaves as a prefix with its own verb)
  • végig- (see also the adverb végig)
  • (végre-) (prefix of a compound verb which behaves as a prefixed verb; see also the adverb végre)
  • vele- (very limited in use)
  • viszont- (limited in use; see also the adverb viszont)
  • vissza- (see also the adverb vissza)

Prefixes from adverbs retaining adverbial featuresEdit

Some prefixes, such as alá-, bele-, hozzá-, közé-, mellé-, neki-, rá-, and utána-, only behave as actual prefixes if they refer to a third-person argument. If their argument is first or second person (supposing it makes sense for the given verb and its particular argument), they will get personal suffixes (just like the original adverbs) and they will be separated from the verb in writing. For example, ránézett Péterre (“s/he looked at Peter”) but rám nézett (“s/he looked at me”). Or: beleszeretett Gabiba (“s/he fell in love with Gabi”) but beléd szeretett (“s/he fell in love with you”). The verbs are not stressed in these cases. However, the meaning of the structure will still be determined by the original prefixed verbs, such as ránéz or beleszeret, even if their prefix is supplemented with a personal suffix (rám, beléd). If the verb is transitive, it can retain its object, so its form will reflect both of its arguments: hozzám vágta a könyvet (“s/he threw the book at me”) from hozzávág, the prefix reflecting the target (me) and the verb form proper referring to the definite object (the book). The phrases érte megy, érte jön (“to fetch, to pick up”), érte küld (to send for) behave the same way (taking suffixes like értem), but érte is not considered a verbal prefix so it is written with a space afterwards.

Compound prefixesEdit

The following compound prefixes are written separately from verbs, although their function is similar to those listed above.

The other compound prefixes with opposite senses are written with a hyphen (and separately from the verb): ide-oda, oda-vissza, fel-le, előre-hátra (e.g. fel-le sétál) etc.

On the other hand, repeated suffixes are written next to the verb as one word: be-benéz etc. (’drop in every now and then’), cf. benéz.

See alsoEdit

Further readingEdit