Usually, when learning a language, I am a dutiful plodder, accepting unquestioningly the rules of grammar and completing the dull exercises I'm set without a second thought. However, yesterday, as I was ploughing my way through a chapter on the Hungarian imperative in one of my Teach-Yourself-Hungarian-type books, I did find myself wondering about the verbs that had been chosen to illustrate the different classes of conjugation.
I mean, how likely is that I'm ever going to order anyone to do some milking, or indeed exclaim cheerfully, 'Let us milk'? And I trust I'm right in assuming that I'm never going to need to use the word 'kill' in any context, least of all the imperative - or is it a rule that, once in possession of knowledge, one will inevitably put that knowledge to use?
Sunday Evening Book Reviews
21 minutes ago