The aim of this paper is to initiate a debate about one of the most complex problems in Hungarian orthography: the spelling of compound words, which is based on semantic and syntactic rules. This research work is made at the invitation of the Hungarian Linguistics Committee of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. First the authors examine the semantic and syntactic rules which play a role in the orthography of compound words, and they also give a summary of the traditional orthographic patterns with reference to these words. In addition, they collect a great number of occurrences not codified in the current 11th edition of the orthographic regulations and dictionary of the Academy, and which therefore cause a lot of problems in writing (e.g., compound words containing abbreviations, proper names, foreign words, etc.). The authors not only summarise but also try to solve these problems by suggesting various ways out. The paper contains word lists demonstrating each occurrence.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.