Learn the numbers in Hungarian!

This week I realised: we have so much audio material, but we haven’t prepared one for the numbers yet. So these are the numbers from zero to thirty in Hungarian:

0     nulla
1     egy                     11     tizenegy                            21     huszonegy
2     kettő, két*           12     tizenkettő, tizenkét*          22      huszonkettő, huszonkét*
3     három                13     tizenhárom                       23      huszonhárom
4     négy                   14     tizennégy                          24      huszonnégy
5     öt                        15     tizenöt                              25      huszonöt
6     hat                      16     tizenhat                            26      huszonhat
7     hét                      17     tizenhét                            27      huszonhét
8     nyolc                  18     tizennyolc                         28      huszonnyolc
9     kilenc                 19     tizenkilenc                        29      huszonkilenc
10   tíz                      20      húsz                                30      harminc         Learn the numbers in Hungarian!

The number 2 has two different forms.
a) If it is used in the attributive position (this means the thing the number refers to comes after it), you should use ‘két’. E.g. ‘két kocsi’ (‘two cars’), ‘két kutya’ (‘two dogs’).
b) If the thing the number refers to does not come after it (the number is used on its own), you should use ‘kettő’.
E.g. ‘Hány kocsid van?’
‘Hány kutyád van?’

The same thing happens not just to 2, but to 12, 22, 32 and all numbers ending in ‘2’.

If we want to emphasise the number for some reason, ‘kettő’ may also be used attributively (before the thing it refers to).

Please listen to this Recording of Hungarian numbers from 0 – 30 before we move on and learn the rest of the numbers. (Unfortunately, I don’t know how to set for the recording to open in a new window, so please click on it with the middle button of your mouse and it will open in a new window. Once you have started the recording, please come back to this page and follow the text on the screen.) I have left a little gap after each number – this is for you to repeat the number after me!

In the next few days we will add more posts teaching you the numbers, so if you are interested, please check back soon!

Thank you!




How to pronounce Hungarian vowels and double-digit consonants

When people start learning Hungarian they are usually very conscious about their pronunciation. But please believe me: if you keep practising (listening to Hungarian CDs, the Hungarian radio, or having lessons) your pronunciation will be fine and people will understand you. At the end of the day, your aim is not to win a pronunciation competition, but to communicate with people and if you stick to practising, you will certainly be able to do that.Hungarian vowels and double-digit consonants

On the other hand, I perfectly understand where this self-consciousness might come from: I used to be like this with my English when we first moved to the UK. Now I have been living here for nine years and still have a strong Hungarian accent! However, if I was waiting for my accent to disappear, I would probably never say a word. (A Hungarian accent is notoriously difficult to lose and the chances are that I will still have it in thirty years’ time.)

But to make your life a bit easier, I have prepared a short recording on Hungarian vowels and consonants. Whilst listening to it, please refer to the list below and have a look at the words I’m saying. This way, as well as hearing the words, you can see them written down in front of you, so you will be able to understand what I’m referring to. When you hear a gap in the recording, that is for you to repeat the word please.

So here is the list of vowels and consonants I go through, please click here to have a listen.

  • Vowels

long and short vowels: a – á, e – é , i – í, o – ó, ö – ő, u – ú, ü –ű

a              alma (apple), magyar (Hungarian)

á              Magyarország (Hungary)

e             te (you)

é             én (I)

i               Szia! (Hi!)

í               tíz (ten)

o             Jó napot kívánok! (Good Day!)

ó             jó (good)

ö             Ön (polite You), köszönöm – thank you

ő             ő (he, she)

u             Duna (Danube), gulyás (Goulasch)

ú             húsz (twenty)

ü             ül (sit), eskü (oath)

ű             tűz (fire)

  • Double-digit consonants:

ty            tyúk (hen)

cs           csak (only)

gy           magyar (Hungarian)

sz           szép (nice, beautiful)

zs           zsiráf (giraffe)

ny           nyilatkozat (statement)

ly            Erdély (Transylvania)

Please let me know in the ‘Comments’ section if you have any questions and I will be more than happy to help you!