"Jo eldre han blir, jo mindre forstår han."

Translation:The older he gets, the less he understands.

February 1, 2016

12 Comments

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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chiarabab

I am a bit confused, where does "jo" come from?

February 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deliciae
Mod
  • 348

"jo... [jo/desto/dess]" is used for comparison in the same way as "the... the" is in English:

"Jo større, jo bedre."
"The bigger, the better."

February 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chiarabab

That was illuminating, thank you! Not being a native English speaker I never thought at that "the" as different from a normal "the", but now that you point it out it does have a very specific function. And now, forgive me for my ignorance and for taking advantage of your kindness, but what are desto/dess? neutral/plural?

February 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deliciae
Mod
  • 348

I'm glad it made sense! Sometimes it's easier to understand one language when you put it up against another. :)

"Desto" and "dess" are just alternatives to "jo" (in the second part of the comparison), so you don't need to worry about them agreeing with anything else. It's a stylistic/dialectical choice.

February 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chiarabab

So I could say "Jo større, desto/dess bedre"?

February 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deliciae
Mod
  • 348

Exactly!

February 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AtalinaDove

This is just like in German :D (je mehr, je besser) (Je mehr, desto besser)

June 20, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Josh_Overlien

I am a native English speaker, and I find it very true that you understand your own language better when learning another language.

March 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArtyomBondartsov

What an interesting construction! It reminds me of english "the ... the" indeed, though I'm not a native speaker as well. However is it always allowed to violate V2 rule in the first part of the sentences with this type of comparison? Correct me if I'm wrong, but "jo endre han" is not a complex collocation which forms a subject here, isn't it?

October 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mihail_Moldova

it's really sad...

August 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vertumne

Why we would not say "Jo mindre han forstår"?

January 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/beerzoe

Dette er min erfaring også. Da jeg var 16, visste jeg alt; nå er jeg... ikke 16, jeg er mindre sikker :)

July 5, 2019
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