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https://www.duolingo.com/Antonio_Sou

'Han såg sig om på de viskande människorna.'

I don't follow it. I can see this is another expression that can't be translated literally. The English original reads 'He looked back at...'

What I read is 'He saw himself om(?) on/at the whispering people.'

Could someone please shed some light on it? Why not simply 'Han tittade på...' ?

To what extent is se used for both 'to see' and 'to look'?

Cheers!

2 years ago

4 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/devalanteriel
devalanteriel
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That's a really odd sentence in Swedish, mostly because se sig om means "look around", and it's conditionally intransitive unlike its English counterpart, so you can't stack a på x prepositional phrase after it. (But you could do e.g. se sig om efter x to mean "look around for x".)

It would be better suited with some other translation, especially if the original reads "He looked back at x". Maybe the literal Han tittade tillbaka på x.

Mostly, se/titta correspond to see/look, respectively. There are exceptions but I'm having a hard time figuring out the rules governing those exceptions, sorry.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Antonio_Sou

By 'conditionally intransitive' do you mean 'se sig om' is mostly used on its own in the imperative form?

I wonder why the translator chose this particular construction.

I'll stick to se/titta for see/look respectively then. I'll learn the exceptions in due time.

Thanks a lot for the help :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/devalanteriel
devalanteriel
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No, I meant that while it can be transitive, it's picky about which prepositions it allows. :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Antonio_Sou

I just looked up transitive/intransitive on google. I get it now :P.

2 years ago