Adjectives as verbs (Hungarian)

AdjNotVMorph: Adjectives are distinct from verbs in their morphological and syntactic behavior.

(1) a hangya szorgalmas.

the ant hard-working

’The ant is hard-working.’

(2) a hangyá-k szorgalmas-ak.

the ant-pl hard-working-pl

’The ants are hard-working.’

(3) a hangya szorgalmas vol-t.

the ant hard-working cop-pst.3sg

’The ant was hard-working.’

(4) a hangya esz-ik.

the ant eat-prs.3sg

’The ant is eating.’

(5) a hangya ev-ett.

the ant eat-pst.3sg

’The ant was eating.’

In Hungarian, verbs are marked for the person and number of the subject, tense, mood, and the definiteness of the object. Adjectives in the predicative function agree with their subjects, but (unlike verbs) only in number (cf. Lengyel 2000a: 142‒150).


Nikolett F. Gulyás