Scandinavian language challenge day 32

Today I worked through chapter 10 of Swedish in three months, covering:

  • where in relative clauses
  • question words in subordinate clauses
  • compound verbs
  • other words

Where in relative clauses

Where in question: var? (where?) / vart? (to where?)

Where in relative clause: där (where) / dit (to where);

  • Han vet en restaurang, där man kan äta fransk mat
    (he knows a restuarant where you can eat French food)
  • Jag vet en restaurang, dit vi can kan gå
    (I know a restaurant where we can go)

Question words in subordinate clauses

The question words vad (what), vem (who) and vilken (which) can appear alone as the object in a subordinate clause, but must be followed by som if they are the subject:

  • Hon undrade, vad vi skulle göra
    She wondered what we should do)
  • Jag undrar, vad som händer i Sverige
    (I wonder what is haappening in Sweden)
  • Han frågade mig, vilken väg som var kortast
    (He asked me which way was the shortest

Vad som helset / vem som helst / vilken som helst means anything at all / anyone at all / any … at all:

  • Du ka få vilken bok some helst
    (you can have any book at all)

Compound verbs

Some verbs with inseparable prefixes:


anklaga (1)
betyda (2)
erbyda (4)
förlora (1)
härleda (2)
missunna (1)
oroa (1)
samarbeta (1)
umgås (4)
undvika (4)
vansköta (2)
välsigna (1)
åkalla (1)

go round with
neglect, mismanage

Examples of verbs with separable prefixes:

bryta abv (4)
gå förbi (4)
slå ihjäl (4)
komma in (4)
följa med (2)
sätta på (4)
stänga av (2)
stryka under (4)
gå ut (4)
komma ihåg (4)

break off
walk past
switch on
switch off

  • Hon satte på TV-n innan han gick ut
    (She put on the TV before he went out)
  • Han bröt av en gren och slog ihjäl vargen.
    (He broke off a branch and killed the wolf)

Sometimes, a prefix is separable if it has a literal meaning or is used informally, but inseparable if it is used abstractly or formally:

  • pöjken bröt av grenen
  • (the boy broke off the branch)
  • Statsministern avbröt diskussionen
    (the prime minister broke off the discussion)
  • de lade ned böckerna på bordet
    (they put the books down on the table)
  • Statsministern nedlade en krans på graven
    (the prime minister laid a wreath on the grave)

The separable prefix is attached at the front of the verb in past and present participles: avbruten (broken off); omtyckt (liked, popular); förbigående (passing); igenkännende (recognising).

The separable prefix is stressed and normally goes immediately after the main verb:

  • Den tyska kvinnan kände igen henne
    (the German woman recognised her)

But the separable prefix is separated from the verb:

  • in main clauses in the present and imperfect tenses, by the negative particle inte and by other adverbs such as aldrig, alltid, gärna, kanske, ofta, redan, snart, sällan
    • Han kände inte igen mig
      (he didn’t recognise me)
    • Flickan gick ofta förbi
      (the girl often walked past)
  • in main clauses by the subject when it has been inverted with a verb in the present or imperfect tense:
    • Tycker du om svenska mat?
      (do you like Swedish food?)
    • Kände hon igen dig?
    • (did she recognise you?)
  • by the adverbs bra, mycket, illa (bad, badly)
  • hon har alltid tyckt illa om honom
    (she has always disliked him)

Some of the other words in this chapter

Nouns: etlandskap (-, province); mjölk (milk); et rike (-n, realm); en stat (-er, state); et slott (-, castle); en vara (-or, ware, commodity); Nouns: et sätt (-, way, manner)

Verbs: förklara (1) (explain); låna (1) (lend); måla (1) (paint); slå sönder (smash); spara (1) (save); få tag i (get hold of)

Adjectives: stylig (stylish); stolt över (proud) of; utmärkt (excellent)

Other words and phrases visst (certainly); enda (only); hej så länge (bye for now); vid åttatiden (around 8 o’clock)

Geographical terms:

  • tysk (German); rysk (Russian); engelsk (English)
  • Some names of males are the same as the corresponiding adjective (dansk; svensk; tysk) but some differ (normann v norsk; engelsman v engelsk; fransman v fransk; ryss v rysk; holländare, amerikanere; finne; islänning; spanjor).
  • Words for females are mostly the same as the feminine adjective, but note fransyska (v franska) and spanjorka (v spanska).
  • The feminine form of the adjective is also generally the same as the name of the language: svenska (Swedish)

Some ponts about numbers:

  • En gång (-ar) = time, occasion. En tid (-er) = a period of time:
    • Jag träffade henne bara en gång
      (I met her only once)
    • Det var en gång
      (once upon a time)
    • Hon bodde i Italien en tid
      (he lived in Italy for a while)
  • Some cases when the first part of definite article is left out:
    • with ordinal numbers: fösta / andra/tredja gång (1st, 2nd, 3rd time)
    • in set phrases: Förenta staterna (United States); Vita huset (the White House); Kungliga slottet (Royal Place, in Stockholm); Franska revolutionen)
  • Phone numbers are pronunced and written as pairs: 18 45 64 (arton fyrtiofem sextiofyra)
  • Nouns can be made from the numbers 0-12 and other numbers ending in the digits 1-9, by suffixing -a (plural -or). This nouns means things like a bus number, shoe size, room number, coin or note, school year, number of rooms in a flat:
    • Göran har en trea i Göteborg
      (Göran has a 3 bedroom flat in Gothenburg)

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