"Han kunne ikke fatte hva som hadde skjedd."

Translation:He could not comprehend what had happened.

October 10, 2015

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The English word "fathom" is a little mystic for me. Is it really used in this context?


in English we often use "fathom" to mean "work out" or "understand" or "comprehend", as in "he could not work out/understand/comprehend what had happened". Confusingly a fathom is also a unit of depth equal to 6 feet, although its rarely used in day to day speech. Unless your on a boat


It definitely is. I've used it and heard others using it, but in this sentence, you could just as easily say 'understand'.


"grasp" is another good alternative in this context.


Or even just "get"! The words both come from a root of physically grasping and came to metaphorically mean intellectually grasping, e.g. "Get it?" for "Do you understand?"


The original meaning of fathom (Old English fæþm) was an embrace with the distance of one's arms. It eventually took on the meaning of mental grasp or understanding, or the measurement more specifically. It is cognate with Norwegian favn.


Does "som" add any meaning here, or does it just fill the place of subject in the object phrase? (and if so, is it necessary?)


I think it's just omitted in the English sentence. You could say "... that which had happened" and "... what had happened".


How do you say the following in Norwegian: He could not have understood what had happened.


Han kunne ikke ha forstått hva som hadde hendt.


I'm guessing the sentence would be: Han kunne ikke ha forstod hva som hadde skjedd.

Lykke til!


Hva betyr norsk "FATTE du skissa"? Engelsk "do you catch my drift"? Noe mer eksemler om ordet "fatte" i bruk, noen?


If you say:

"Fatter du ikke det !!!!!!"

to someone, you tell the person that he is extremely stupid. It's not an important thing to learn.

It's better to use the verb "å forstå".

In the duo-sentence the word "fatte" is used in a different setting: Han kunne ikke fatte (forstå) ..... it was impossible to understand ....


Perhaps it's not the kindest way to phrase it but it'd be good to be able to understand if it's said to you. "Fatter du ikke det?!" is a direct cognate, with all the same implication of stupidity, to English "Don't you get it?!"

(In English, however, it could be said in a gentle tone and thus be only slightly condescending.)

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