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Teach Yourself Hungarian: A complete course for beginners Paperback – 21 Jan 1993

3.8 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Teach Yourself (21 Jan. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340562862
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340562864
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 858,336 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Book Description

This double CD provides listening material which accompanies the book, Teach Yourself Hungarian (978 0 340 86689 4). The book and CDs are also available as a pack (978 0 340 90627 9).

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

ZSUZSA PONTIFEX was born in Hungary and has a degree in Hungarian and English from Eotvos Lorand University in Budapest. She has studied Russian and English literature in Moscow and in London. After three years teaching English and Hungarian in a Budapest secondary school she moved to Britain, where she worked for the Hungarian section of the BBC World Service.

Since 1990 she has been running Hungarian Language Services (HLS), a language school and translation/interpreting agency which teaches Hungarian to diplomats, businesspeople and private individuals. She also sets Hungarian language exams for the Foreign Office and the Institute of Linguists.


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I found this book very easy to learn from. Despite the vocabulary being difficult to say the least, the book makes the grammar of the language very simple, and the user can quickly learn how to handle simple situations in Hungary. The 2nd part of the book goes into more complex issues for the more ambitious learner. I thoroughly recommend the book - it certainly has helped me communicate on my visits to the country.
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Format: Audio Cassette
Positives:

The language in this book is everyday Hungarian - within the first few chapters, you have basic introductions, eating out, directions and shopping, all the really essential stuff - you won't starve on holiday with this book.

Useful (and interesting) sections on Hungarian culture, customs and manners. Invaluable.

The grammar is fairly well explained, although I have seen better.

Negatives:

No listening comprehensions. Reading comprehensions far too easy.

Grammar points explained one after the other, sonetimes as many as 10 in a chapter, with inadequate practice tasks.

Vocabulary thrown at the learner with little in the way of practice. To learn the vocabulary effectively, the student needs to devise his or her own activities, such as flashcards or memory games.

This isn't a bad language learning book, but it could be improved by adding a workbook for grammar and vocabulary practice. With little in the way of competition, TY Hungarian should be the first port of call for any learner of Hungarian. However, if you can afford it, Hallo, Itt Magyaroszag! by Erdos and Prileszky, used in conjunction with Hungarian Verbs and Essentials of Grammar by Torkenczy would be a much better option.
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Format: Paperback
This is definitely one of the better books in this series. It is usefully divided into two parts, the first for the casual visitor and the second for the more serious learner. The recordings are excellent and the grammar explanations are clear and approachable. The dialogues are realistic and cover useful vocabulary. Shortcomings are inherent in the nature of the Teach Yourself series. It covers a lot in a short space of time and there is not much chance to practise. You shouldn't expect to be fluent after doing this course but you will never learn a language from one source alone. However, I think that this is an excellent way to make a start in the language and an even better way to learn more communicative language for those who have previously learned from a more grammar based course. I originally learned from a traditional thorough course but when in Hungary found myself using more language that I'd picked up from the dialogues in Teach Yourself Hungarian!
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Format: Paperback
I am a student teacher who went to Hungary to teach English for 3 months. Before I left, I used this Hungarian course but it was a disaster! In the course, vocabulary is only written down, not sounded-out by the tape, the role-plays used very traditional, dated formal language and the topic of role-plays were unrealistic(no one would ever say what those role-plays said!). This course didn't help me at all! I was very disappointed!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My girlfriend is Hungarian, so I have started to learn the language.

I've tried several books and this, accompanied by the audio CD is the business.

The CD is not amazingly practical, there aren't really any breaks and if you hit play it just flies through everything, so you need to be quite hands-on with pausing and back-tracking etc.

Otherwise it is a great product, teaching you some very relevant material for first time visits, and seeing as I have been to Hungary a few times now I've found what I have learnt in here very practical and even been able to hold me own in basic conversation with my partner's parents - she is proud.

There are a few minor mistranslations in the book, but nothing that will harm your practice of the language.

Get this book if you want to learn Hungarian. As it is a phonetic language, and ANY minor mispronunciation will make you impossible to understand to a Hungarian native, the audio CD is vital - you cannot learn the language without audio aid, I promise you.
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Format: Paperback
A really useful and informative book for learning Hungarian. Very helpful and a fun way of learning. I'd advise you to purchase the book with the recording because I feel the pronounciation can't be fully grasped without the cassette or cd available. If you buy this you will have a great deal of fun and learn a lot, pefect for a trip to Hungary, and accumulate many Hungarian friends along the way. "Az áltag magyart" will be very appreciative of your use of their fascinating, beautiful language.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had the previous incarnation of this guide to learning Hungarian and after purchasing the updated version I can honestly say that this verion is even better. If you are interested in learning Hungarian this guide is the best one out there and the most complete teaching experience for learning Hungarian you will ever lay hands on.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We got this book when travelling around Hungary for just over a week.

It turned out to be a lifesaver - outside of Budapest, the bit of Hungarian we could cobble together was invaluable.

The chapters are split reasonably sensibly. The book starts off with basic words like please, thank you and "tessek" (which covers several different phrases in English and is used all the time in Hungary so is a really useful word to learn!). It then goes on with chapters in how to order at restaurants, how to use public transport and so on. Later on, the chapters go on to cover more complex things like different tenses and so on.

I just concentrated on the basic chapters, and they were very useful for most situations you'd find yourself in as a tourist. The language instruction is interspersed with information about Hungarian customs, which is also really useful.

However, there's no way round it - if you want to learn even a bit of Hungarian, it does take more time and effort than other languages. I did have to set aside time to study it before we left, and took the book with us to read on train journeys.

However, we found the little that we knew took us a long way, and it certainly helped loads when understanding what was going on around us.

I was pretty pleased when people I spoke to on holiday could actually understand what I was saying, which is the acid test of any language book - alright, we were only saying simple things like "two beers please" and "two tickets to Budapest", but this book enabled us to do that.
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