Agent and patient marking (Hungarian)

APmk=Case: The agent and patient are marked through the use of case marking alignment.

(1) móni vers-et ír.

Móni poem-acc write.prs.3sg

‘Móni is writing a poem.’

(2) móni ír egy vers-et.

Móni write.prs.3sg a poem-acc

‘Móni is writing a poem.’

(3) móni ír-ja a vers-et.

Móni write-prs.obj.3sg the poem-acc

‘Móni is writing the poem.’

(4) móni a vers-et ír-ja (nem a level-et).

Móni the poem-acc write-prs.obj.3sg neg the letter-acc

‘Móni is writing the poem (and not the letter).’

In Hungarian, the agent and the patient are differentiated by case marking and the determinate/indeterminate conjugations (cf. Havas 2005, 2008, Csepregi 2010b, É. Kiss 2010, 2013, Honti 2009, Sárosi 2003). The agent is typically unmarked, while the patient takes the accusative case. The conjugated verb form always reflects the person and number of the agent. Furthermore, the choice between the different conjugations shows the definiteness of the patient (cf. Kugler 2000a: 104‒123, Kiefer 2003: 212‒222).


Nikolett F. Gulyás