Confused: liten, litet, lille, lilla, små

I thought I finally understood that adjectives basically come in the declinations like

grön: indefinite, singular, utrum

grönt: indefinite, singular, neutrum

gröna: definite singular and both plural genders

Now I learned that all of these mean "small":

liten, litet, lille, lilla, små

I tried to look it up I in the swedish wiktionary:

I understand these fine:

liten: Obestämd, singular Utrum

litet: Obestämd, singular Neutrum


små: Plural

But oh my, there are two different definite forms, which are both different from Plural, and which use genders (?) named "Maskulinum" and "Alla"!

Are "Maskulinum" and "Alla" just different words for "Utrum" and "Neutrum"? Could anybody explain and maybe give examples?

Thanks in advance!

September 6, 2015


en liten bil/ett litet hus

den lilla bilen/det lilla huset / den lille pojken (only used with words that mean men/boys)

små bilar/små hus

September 6, 2015

"Maskulinum" means it's used for words that have an obvious relation to male gender, like "Man", "Pojke", "Kille" etc. It's a leftover from the three grammatical genders of older Swedish.

"Alla" just means it's the form for everything else.

September 6, 2015

Thanks for the answer! To be honest I haven't noticed the "Tips and notes" because I am working almost only in the mobile app (where the "Tips and notes" are missing).

So to summarize: "Maskulinum" is a special form that all adjectives have (and is usually the same base with suffix "e"). "liten" is irregular, because the plural form "små" is different from the definite singular "lilla".

September 7, 2015

This is from tips and notes:

en liten pojke, ett litet hus, små katter, den lille/lilla pojken, det lilla huset, de små katterna

September 6, 2015

The masculine can be used in cases where you would use the pronoun "han".

den lille pojken, den gamle mannen etc...

but: den lilla flickan, den gamla kvinnan (you would use "hon").

and: den lilla cykeln, det gamla trädet (you would use "den/det")

September 6, 2015
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