Duolingo is the most popular way to learn languages in the world. Best of all, it's 100% free!

https://www.duolingo.com/Rayane593213

Swedish : "ett kaffe" or "en kaffe" ?

Hi everybody. I noticed that the good translation of "the coffee" is "kaffet". But surprisingly, when I ask Google translation to translate "a coffee", it says "en kaffe". Why not "ett kaffe" ? Thank you !

1 year ago

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Eva33964

Simple. If you say "ett kaffe" you're referring to the type of beans, but if you say "en kaffe" it's a cup of coffe. Example. "Jag vill ha en kaffe med ett kaffe från Brasilien". If you go to a café you might say "en espresso, tack" or "en svart kaffe, tack" or "en kaffe med mjölk, tack" or "en cappucino, tack" or "en latte, tack" (depending on the degree of milk and coffe, stronger coffe in the beginning, and lots of milk toward the end of the list).

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SeptimusBones
SeptimusBones
  • 20
  • 19
  • 18
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 15
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2

I would assume that to be because "en kaffe" would merely be a shortened form of "en kopp kaffe". "Kaffe" itself is uncountable, and thus doesn't really get used with an indefinite article in other situations. This is actually the same in English. "A coffee" usually refers to a cup of coffee.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MagnusBoiv
MagnusBoiv
  • 22
  • 11
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 4
  • 3

Yes, "kaffe" is uncountable and has the t-genus. So "the coffee" translates to "kaffet". But "en kaffe" is a very common way of saying "a cup of coffee".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rayane593213

Tack everybody !

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pinnariskogen
pinnariskogen
  • 20
  • 17
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6

The same thing also goes for "öl" and possibly some other beverages. Doesn't work for wine though, for some reason.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rayane593213

Thank you!

1 year ago