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The future tense and using two Hungarian verbs


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In this Hungarian lesson we will see how to use two verbs, such as to say I want to go or he wanted to come. Note how we form this in English - we conjugate one verb and place the other into the [infinitive]. The same principle applies in Hungarian, therefore you should be familiar with making the [infinitive of verbs with -(a)ni / -(e)eni].

Conjugate the verb showing who wants to do the verb, and place the verb that they wish to do into the infinitive.

  • akarok menni I want to go
  • akart jönni he wanted to come

See how we conjugate akar based on who, when, and to what they are doing.

In these two examples, we have used intransitive verbs, menni and jönni. If the infinitive shows a definite object, we conjugate the first verb using the   definite conjugation.

  • akarok enni I want to eat
  • akarom enni (ezt) I want to eat it
  • akartam enni (ezt) I wanted to eat it (past)
  • kérte látni (ezt) he asked to see it

We can even use three verbs, such as in the following:

  • akarnak segíteni neked gyakorolni they want to help you to to practise

Please see the section about infinitives with personal suffixes which will show you how to make construcions lik e "you are allowed to go", "he needs to see", "they are forbidden to smoke".

The future tense

We have seen how to use two verbs. We can apply a special kind of verb that can be thought of as meaning "will". This way we form the future tense.

The verb is fog will and is conjugated regularly.

Indefinite: fogok, fogsz, fog, fogunk, fogtok, fognak;
Definite: fogom, fogod, fogja, fogjuk, fogjátok, fogják.

  • fog menni he will go
  • fogok menni I will go
  • fognak enni they will eat
  • fogják enni (ezt) they will eat it (definite)

The word order gives empahsis.

  • fog jönni he will come
  • jönni fog he will come

Splitting of verbal particles (coverbs)

When the infinitive verb has a coverb like meg- ki- el- in it, we must split the coverb around the conjugated verb.

  • elmondani to tell.
  • el akarok mondani I want to tell. We split the el- from the -mondani and wrap them around the fogok.

  • bemenni to go in.
  • be fogok menni I will go in. We split the be- from the -menni and wrap them around the fogok.

  • kilépni to step out.
  • ki fogsz lépni you will step out.

Please see the main section about splitting of coverbs.

Other ways of expressing future action

In addition to using the above construction, it's more common to use a time word and the present tense to express future intent.

  • holnap megyek I will go tomorrow, or, I'm going tomorrow.
  • majd megyek At some time in the future I will go. here majd means "at some time soon"

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