Arbitrary word order (linguistics)

Arbitrary word order (linguistics)

A property of languages where word order within a sentence doesn't matter. It can express slight differences in meaning, the mood of the speaker, emphasis or other things.

Languages with arbitrary word order

  • Hungarian language - It is made possible in Hungarian by the -t postfix indicating that the word is the object of the sentence.

Examples

Hungarian

  • English: "Kate ate a cake", Hungarian:
    • "Emese megevett egy szeletet" (same word order as English)
    • "Meg Emese evett egy szeletet" (emphasis on her)
    • "Egy szeletet Emese evett meg" (same emphasis as above)
    • "Emese egy szeletet evett meg" (emphasis on cake)
    • "Egy szeletet evett meg Emese" (emphasis on one)
    • "Megevett egy szeletet Emese"
    • "Megevett Emese egy szeletet"

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