ZSIGMOND SIMONYI AND HUNGARIAN ORTHOGRAPHY
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The speaker first expressed his appreciation of the past ten years of Zsigmond Simonyi spelling contests. Next, he pointed out the appropriacy of the choice of Simonyi's name for that series of contests. The feature that he said both Simonyi's oeuvre and the history of Hungarian orthography shared was 'reality'. He pointed out that Simonyi's greatest achievement had been that he had raised the standards of the study of Hungarian to match those of the Finno-Ugric studies of his day. Also, Simonyi had been a versatile scholar, working in almost every subdiscipline of linguistics. With respect to orthography, he had proposed some streamlining that was subsequently adopted by Hungarian schools in 1903 but was not accepted by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences until 1922. The speaker then went on to characterise the current spelling system of Hungarian as alphabetic, Latin-based, phonemic, sense-reflecting and observant of actual usage. He mentioned the latest spelling manuals and expanded on the expected future of Hungarian orthography, too.
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