If we compare the expressions and idioms of different nationalities, we can find some real gems as back-translation can lead to some pretty amusing results. Read this article and check out the funniest Hungarian expressions!
Hungarians are “as happy as a monkey about its tail”
As matadornetwork.com writes, Hungarians express their happiness in a very funny way. Instead of jumping for joy, people in Hungary are “as happy as a monkey about its tail” (Örül, mint majom a farkának). Although this might sound extremely amusing for foreigners, this is a totally common Hungarian idiom.
“Why are you giving drinks to the mice?”
This Hungarian expression is also among the funniest ones. Instead of “Why are you crying?”, Hungarians ask, “Miért itatod az egereket?”, meaning, “Why are you giving drinks to the mice?”
- Read also: The most beautiful Hungarian words
“You can’t make bacon out of a dog”
If you found the previous examples amusing, you will definitely like this one. While the English would say “A leopard can’t change its spots”, the Hungarian equivalent is “You cannot make bacon out of a dog” (Kutyából nem lesz szalonna). Although expressed differently, both proverbs mean that it is impossible for one to change their character, even if they try very hard. However, the Hungarian expression sounds probably funnier.
“Far, far away” or “behind God’s back”?
In Hungary, Christianity has a very large community of believers. In addition, Christianity has always been part of Hungarians’ life, beginning with Hungary’s first king, Saint Stephen I, who took up Western Christianity in the 11th century. Therefore, these religious roots can be found in some Hungarian expressions. For example, while “behind God’s back” (Isten háta mögött) meaning “far, far away” might sound weird to foreigners, this expression’s origin is actually deep-rooted.
- Read also: Get to know the national symbols of Hungary!
“You can spread him on bread”!
While in some cases there are explanations for the Hungarian idioms, there is no excuse for this strange expression. If you are not familiar with this idiom, it is really hard to guess its meaning. “You can spread him on bread” (Kenyérre lehet kenni) is actually used for good-hearted people. If you think someone is very nice, you may say that you can spread them on bread!
Read alsoHungarian etiquette: how to behave when you are staying in Hungary
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