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2. Linguacultures in contact

As mentioned above, the traces of long-term cultural contacts are seen in partner languages' lexicons. This paragraphe is devoted to the study of linguacultural relations between Hungary and the most important English speaking countries. In the Preface of Jancsó et al.'s textbook (2010) we can read the following: „Cultural Relations is a unique terxtbook of its kind. It introduces the reader to the civilisation of the four largest, most populous and most significant English-speaking countries in the world (...). One of the underlying principles of the book is this contrastive approach: the main issues in each chapter are contrasted to contemporary Hungarian conditions and students are constantly encouraged to make comparisons between the target counry and their native land. The authors are convinced that modern language teaching should not be content with the four basic skills (reading, writing, speaking and listening) but should also focus on cultural literacy (bold type is mine - E. L.), that is, a deeper understanding of the culture of the countries where the language is spoken" (ibid 7).

It must be added, that in the same time the treatment of linguacultural matters, especially the treatment of realia, can be largely utilized for translation solutions, too. Now we intend to have a closer look at how the realia of the English-speaking world are explained to Hungarian students. On pages 283-319 a Vocabulary List is devoted to the given purpose. The authors claim that „The Hungarian equivalents or definitions identify or describe only that meaning of a given word in which it is used in the appropriate reading. Notes: (1) Proper names are given in bold type. (2) Words between [] are offered as „explanations rather than meaning" (ibid 283). Excerps of the Vocabulary List are presented as follows:


2.1. The United Kingdom


10 Downing Street

Downing Street 10 [a brit miniszterelnök rezidenciája]

Act of Union

egyesülési törvény [az Anglia és Skócia egyesülését 1707-ben illetve Nagy-Britannia és Írország egyesülését 0801-ben kimondó törvények elnevezése]

Ben Nevis

[Skócia és egyben Nagy-Britannia legmagasabb hegycsúcsa]

Big Ben

[a brit parlament híres óratornya]

Bill of Rights

[az angol alkotmányos monarchia 1689-ben elfogadott alapvető jogdokumentuma]


[az észak-amerikai feketék népzenéjéből eredő jellegzetes zenei irányzat]


[a brit rendőrök hagyományos beceneve]


[brit szóhasználat] földszintes ház

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham-palota [a brit uralkodó londoni rezidenciája]

Chancellor of the Exchequer

[a brit pénzügyminiszter hivatalos elnevezése]

City, the

[London legrégibb kerülete, ma az üzleti és pénzügyi élet nemzetközi központja]


[London egyik régi munkáskerületének jellegzetes dialektusukról felismerhető lakói]


Nemzetközösség [az egykori brit gyarmatok számára létrehozott nemzetközi szervezet]

Conservative Party

Konzervatív Párt [a két legnagyobb brit politikai párt egyike]

Continent, the

[a britek hagyományos elnevezése Európára, illetve annak Brit-szigeteken kívül eső részére]



2.2. Australia

Blue ribbon seet

Biztos képviselői hely a Liberális [U. K.: konzervatív] Pártnak


Ausztrália beceneve


ausztráliai [angolság]


a region beyond population centres (92)


The twelwe Apostles (92)

Great Barrier Reef (93)

Snowy Mountains (93)

Dividing Range (93)

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders (93)

waratah, wattle, flannel flower, desert pea, Christmas bush, kangaroo pawn (94)

grass tree, koala, kangaroo, platybus, wombat, dingo, possum, emu, spiny anteater, echidna, marsupial , Kokaburra, lyrebird, Waratah(95)


Conciliation and Arbitrary Act (105)

Aussies (111)

Aussie Able Program (116)

Melbourne Cup (117)

Australian Footy (117)

netball (118)

The Surf Lifesavers' Association

bushmen (120)

Advance Australia Fair (129)


2.3. The United States of America



The Star-Spangled Banner (138)

All Saints' Day


american football

amerikai futball

associate justice

az USA Legfelsőbb Bíróságának bírája [aki nem a testület elnöke]






Capitolium, a Kongresszus székháza

Chief Justice

az USA Legfelsőbb Bíróságának elnöke


Kongresszus [a USA törvényhozó testülete]

Declaration of Independence

a függetlenség kikiáltása

Democratic Party

Demokrata Párt

easter egg hunt

húsvéti tojás vadászat


episzkopális egyház híve

gold rush


Great Lakes

a Nagy-Tavak

House of representatives


Independence Day

Függetlenség napja


a baseballpálya legbelső játékosai

Memorial Day

háborús hősök emléknapja



New England



a labdát dobó játékos a baseballban


Notes: The 50 USA's states have their official names and nicknames (in brackets), e. g.: Alaska (The Last Frontier), California (Golden State), Delaware (First State), Florida (Sunshine State), Maryland (Free State), Nevada (Silver State), Pennsylvania (Keystone State), etc.

2.4. Canada


Section Canada of the Vocabulary List has no explanatory entries, demonstrating only equivalent lexical items. Therefore, we have added the appropriate lexicon in square brackets for further reference. We paid special attention to the ten provinces and three territories of Canada (capital city names in brackets):



O Canada

Kanada himnusza

Canadian dollar

[kanadai dollár]

First Nations

Kanada őslakói


[tartomány (országos kanadai közigazgatási egység)]


[terület (federatív kanadai közigazgatási egység)]

Maple Leaf

[Kanada nemzeti zászlaja]

Governor General

[II. Erzsébet képviselője Kanadában]

Alberta (Edmonton)

[Alberta tartomány (Edmonton)]

British Columbia (Victoria)

[Brit Columbia tartomány (Victoria)]

Manitoba (Winnipeg)

[Manitoba tartomány (Winnipeg)]

New Brunswick (Fredericton)

[New Brunswick tartomány (Fredericton)]

Newfoundland and Labrador (St. John's)

[Újfundland és Labrador tartomány (St. John's)]

Nova Scotia (Halifax)

[Nova Scotia tartomány (Halifax)]

Ontario (Toronto)

[Ontario tartomány (Toronto)]

Prince Edward Island (Charlottentown)

[Prince-Edward Sziget (Charlottentown)]

Quebec (Quebec-City)

[Quebec (Quebec-City)]

Saskarchewan Yukon Territory (Regina)

[Saskarchewan Yukon Terület (Regina)]

Nunavut Territory (Iqualuit)

[Nunavut Terület (Iqualuit)]

Nordwest Territories (Yellowknife)

[Északnyugati Területek (Yellowknife)]


From the viewpiont of both English language learning and translation from English into Hungarian it must be stated that the Vocabulary List misses a great number of (suggested) Hungarian names of the source language realia, for example: Ben Nevis [Skócia és egyben Nagy-Britannia legmagasabb hegycsúcsa], Big Ben [a brit parlament híres óratornya], bobby [a brit rendőrök hagyományos beceneve], Cockneys [London egyik régi munkáskerületének jellegzetes dialektusukról felismerhető lakói]. As we can see, in the equating entries there are only explanations in brackets (brackets are used only for the realia of the United Kingdom), but the names themselves are lacking. Still, in some of the entries one can find both names and explanatory parts: 10 Downing Street - Downing Street 10 [a brit miniszterelnök rezidenciája], Buckingham Palace - Buckingham-palota [a brit uralkodó londoni rezidenciája], Conservative Party - Konzervatív Párt [a két legnagyobb brit politikai párt egyike]. It is clear and understandable that a series of the given realia hasn't got yet a constant Hungarian name. These facts are assumed to reflect the early and / or loose stage of cultural relations, but it seems to us that foreign language teaching (including textbooks) may and perhabs should be a catalysator for setting new designations in intecultural communication.

According to our opinion, (1) transference of the original names into Hungarian (e. g. Ben Nevis - Ben Nevis, Big Ben - Big Ben, 0 Downing Street - Downing Street 10) could be a dominant solution for rendering the appropriate meaning of realia. In other cases (2) transference plus apposition would be preferable (e. g. Ontario - Ontario tartomány, Capitolium - Capitolium, a Kongresszus székháza, Nova Scotia - Nova Scotia tartomány. In some cases (3) translation proper plus appositive clause would be preferable (territory - terület (federatív kanadai közigazgatási egység,)). There are other cases, too, for example: (4) translation proper (e. g. Nordwest Territories - Északnyugati területek, Independence Day - Függetlenség napja, American Football - amerikai futball), (5) periphrasis or definition (e. g. blues - az észak-amerikai feketék népzenéjéből eredő jellegzetes zenei irányzat, Chancellor of the Exchequer - a brit pénzügyminiszer hivatalos elnevezése, infielders - a baseballpálya legbelső játékosai) etc.

As a summary, it is concluded that instead of incomplete entries it would be not difficult to give fully completed entries, for example: Ben Nevis - Ben Nevis [Skócia és egyben Nagy-Britannia legmagasabb hegycsúcsa], Big Ben - Big Ben [a brit parlament híres óratornya], bobby [a brit rendőrök hagyományos beceneve], Cockneys - Cockney-k [London egyik régi munkáskerületének jellegzetes dialektusukról felismerhető lakói] etc. What we have recommended could apply to teaching and translation purposes, too.

Still, partly because of the low frequency an loose character of cultural contacts in question, many of the English, American, Australian and Canadian realia have no constant Hungarian equivalents, for example, the nicknames of US states: The Last Frontier (Alaska), Golden State (California), First State (Delaware), Sunshine State (Florida), Free State (Maryland), Silver State (Nevada), Keystone State (Pennsylvania) etc. or the Australian English names of plants and animals: waratah, wattle, flannel flower, desert pea, Christmas bush, kangaroo pawn, grass tree, platybus, wombat, possum, spiny anteater, echidna, marsupial, Kokaburra, lyrebird, bowerbird. We Hungarians are familiar just with a few of them: kangaroo - kenguru, koala - koala, dingo - dingó, emu - emu. These facts are convincing enough: from the many possibilities of rendering foreing realia's meanings transference is dominant.

As for rendering Hungarian realia in English equation, a slightly different picture is presented,: honfoglalás - The Conquest of the Fatherland, kalandozások kora - Age of Hungarian raids, Halotti Beszéd - Funeral Sermon and Prayer, Képes Krónika - Illustrated Chronicle, Ómagyar Mária-siralom - old Hungarian Laments of Mary, Aranybulla - Golden Bull, tatárjárás - Mongol invasion, Nándorfehérvári győzelem - Victory at Nándorfehérvár (Belgrad), Mohácsi vész - Battle of Mohács, Rákóczi szabadságharca - War of Independence of F. Rákóczi, Reformkor - Period of reforms, nyelvújítás - Reform of Hungarian Language, Trianoni béke - Trianon Treaty, nyilasok - Arrow Cross Party, 56-os forradalom - National uprisingin 1956. In the above equations the English references make use of the transparency of Hungarian realia's constructions. That's why translation proper is prevalent is most of the cases.

Last but not least, there might be further possibilities for rendering English-speaking countries' realia if the practice, which already has came to existence would be continued and expanded. A good example is rendering Canadian geographical realia, suggested in the table below. For Hungarian equation of Canadian realia appositions tartomány, terület, főváros seem to be inevitable.


Canadian Realia

Suggested Hungarian names

Alberta (Edmonton)

Alberta tartomány (Edmonton főváros)

British Columbia (Victoria)

Brit Columbia tartomány (Victoria főváros)

Manitoba (Winnipeg)

Manitoba tartomány (Winnipeg főváros)

New Brunswick (Fredericton)

New Brunswick tartomány (Fredericton főváros)

Newfoundland and Labrador

Újfundland és Labrador tartomány (St. John's főváros)

Nova Scotia (Halifax)

Nova Scotia tartomány (Halifax főváros)

Ontario (Toronto)

Ontario tartomány (Toronto főváros)

Prince Edward Island (Charlottentown)

Prince-Edward Sziget (Charlottentown főváros)

Quebec (Quebec-City)

Quebec (Quebec-City főváros)

Saskarchewan Yukon Territory (Regina)

Saskarchewan Yukon Terület (Regina főváros)

Nunavut Territory (Iqualuit)

Nunavut Terület (Iqualuit főváros)

Nordwest Territories (Yellowknife)

Északnyugati Területek (Yellowknife főváros)



2.5. Linguistic loaning

The age of globalization has brought the phenomenon of americanization, the worldwide spread of cultural and technological artefacts of American origin. The most significant linguistic features of americanization are the loan-words and semantic calques. Let's survey the results in Hungarian:


politics: checks and balances fékek és ellensúlyok, political correctnesspolitikai korrektség, representative democracyképviseleti demokrácia, House of RepresentativesKépviselőház, SenateSzenátus, senatorszenátor, Administrationadminisztráció (meaning 'kormányzat'), Democratic partyDemokrata Párt, Republican PartyRepublikánus Párt, WatergateWatergate (the latter are American political realia), impeachment impeachment, lobbylobbi, consensus konszenzus;

market economy: market economy piacgazdaság, broker bróker, decision maker döntéshozó, consumer society fogyasztói társadalom, GDPGDP (in most cases with English-like pronunciation: dzsidípí), know-how know-how, manager manager, menedzser, management menedzsment, marketing marketing, monitoringmonitoring;

finances, trade: promotion promóció, transaction tranzakció, image → (gyakrabban franciás ejtéssel: imázs) imidzs, PR PR (with English-like pronunciation: píár), leasing leasing, lízing, non-stop non-stop, discount diszkont, off shore off shore, franchisefranchise;

operation of institutions: controlling controlling, controllercontroller, department of human resources humán erőforrás osztály (korábban: személyzeti osztály), cafeteria cafeteria (earlier: természetbeni juttatás);

informatics: InternetInternet, chatting csetelés, cursor kurzor, file file, fájl, click klikkel, E-mail E-mail, ímél, Emil, drótposta, mouse egér, interfaceinterface, interfész, scanning szkennelés, username usernév, mouse pad egérpad, computer komputer, számítógép, personal computer személyi számítógép, laptoplaptop, notebooknotebook, homapagehonlap, onlineonline, onlájn; Notes: As we could see, in most cases the process of „magyarization" is under way, see kurzor, fájl, klikkel, szkennelés, Emil, drótposta etc.

culture, entertainment: sponsor szponzor, producerproducer, castingcasting, kaszting, talkshawtalkshaw, reality show reality show, valóság show, new wave új hullám, pubpub, peep show peep show, Halloween party Halloween party, Valentine's Day Valentin-nap, check inbecsekkol, chartercharter, last minutelast minute;

sport: match meccs, goal gól, corner korner, szöglet, cricket krikett, golfgolf, bowling bowling (korábban: kugli, teke), baseballbaseball, doping dopping, fair playfair play, fitness fitnesz, hobby hobbi, camping kemping, mountain bike montenbájk, hegyibringa, wellness wellness, snow board hódeszka, squash squash, fallabda, surf szörf, nordic walkingnordic walking;

education, sciences: BABA, MAMA, PhDPhD, post-graduate posztgraduális, alumni alumni (earlier: öregdiák),: abstract absztrakt ( meaning 'tézis, kivonat'), hand-out hand-out, kiosztmány;

miscellaneous : baby-sitterbébiszitter, genderism genderizmus, gentlemen's agreementgentlemen's agreement, challenge kihívás, dramatic drámai, surviving túlélés, loserlúzer, feeling filing, happy hepi, wow wow, sex-appealszexepil, teenager teenager, ice teaice tea, trend trend, trendy trendi, VIP VIP (with English-like pronunciation: viájpí), environment protectionkörnyezetvédelem, environment friendlykörnyezetbarát, rain forestesőerdő (earlier: őserdő), piercingpiercing, testékszer, loserlúzer, shoppingshopping, sopping, trendtrend etc.

We can conclude, that once a partner-language word has been loaned, there is also an opportunity to utilize it in translation practice. Thus, the above mentioned examples can serve as patterns for translation operations and procedures.