The Languages of Hungary
Hungarian is the official language of Hungary with approximately 13 million speakers, Vojvodina (an independent province in Serbia) and three regions in Slovenia. Outside of Hungary, it is spoken in the bordering countries in Europe and in the United States, Canada and Israel. It is considered to be a minority or regional language in Austria, Croatia, Romania, Ukraine and Slovakia.
Hungarian has less language variation, which is shown by the only seven dialects in Hungary and two dialects in Romania. The dialects vary little from the standard and each other. Hungarian is the most spoken Uralic language in Europe. It is part of the Urig group like Finnish, Estonian and some minority languages. The vocabulary differs much from the other European languages, which belong to the Indo-European family of languages.
Features of Hungarian:
- There is no genus. “He” and “she” are expressed with the same word.
- The verbs can only be conjugated in present and past. Other tenses have to be circumscribed.
- Hungarian’s morphology is rich of derivation and flexion, which cause the production of long words.
- Words underlie a vowel harmony. The vowels are categorised into two classes, deep and high vowels. The vowels of suffixes change depending of the stem they connect to. The results are words with vowels of one class.