Friday, March 6, 2009

About the Hungarian language

The English philologist, Sir John Bowring (1792-1872), had a very exciting and eventful life. He had been to many countries and spoke many languages: Hungarian was one of them. He translated many Hungarian poems into English, and issued a literary chrestomathy. In its foreword he wrote the following:

The Hungarian language goes far back. It developed in a very particular manner and its structure reaches back to times, when most of the now spoken European languages did not even exist. It is a language which developed steadily and firmly in itself, and in which there is logic and mathematics with the adaptability and malleability of strength and chords. The Englishmen should be proud that his language indicates an epic of human history. One can show forth its origin; and alien layers can be distinguished in it, which gathered together during the contacts with different nations. Whereas the Hungarian language is like a rubble-stone; consisting of only one piece, on which the storms of time left not a scratch. It's not a calendar that adjusts to the changes of the ages. It needs no one, it doesn't borrow, does no buckstering, and doesn't give or take from anyone. This language is the oldest and most glorious monument of a national sovereignty and a mental independence. What scholars cannot solve, they ignore. In philosophy it's the same way as archeology. The floors of the old Egyptian temples, which were made out of only one rock, can't be explained. No one knows where they came from, or from which mountain the wonderous mass was taken. How they were transported and lifted to the top of the temples. The genuineness of the Hungarian language is a phenomenon much more wonderous than this. He who solves it shall be analyzing the Divine secret; in fact the first thesis of this secret: 

"In the beginning there was Word, 
and the Word was with God, 
and the Word was God."

His book, Poetry of Magyars (1830) is digitalized by Google Book Search and completely available to read.


  1. Ennek örömére posztolhatnál egyet magyarul is...

  2. as you know very well this blog is primarily NOT for hungarian people, though the english speaking hungarians are more than welcome to read it.

    im not planning to post anything in hungarian on this blog in the future.