https://www.duolingo.com/Jake242

How would native English speakers feel about Swedish?

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I just started it, and woah is it easy. Although I only completed a few lessons...... But compared to languages I tried like German, Polish, and Japanese, the grammar is way more logical and less switching (as in the same structure as English.) So anyone that has made it pretty far, how is it?

7 months ago

15 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Tom948490

Swedish grammar starts easy, then quickly descends into weirdness. I guess you could call it logical, but there are lots of strange rules that make it more complex than it seems. For example, Swedish has two ways of making the passive voice (i.e. There are two completely different ways of writing the phrase "The house was painted" - "huset var målade" and "huset målades"). It uses different words for abstract locations depending on if you're travelling there or if you're already there (hem vs hemma, ut vs ute). Making adjectives agree with nouns is also complicated with lots of weird exceptions , for example Swedish has 5 words for "small" depending on the gender, number and definite-ness of the thing which is small (liten, litet, lilla, lille and små).

There are some things that help a lot, the word order is almost the same as in English, you don't conjugate verbs, and there are quite a few words shared between the two languages. The pronunciation also isn't that hard, if you ignore all the "sk/sj" words at least!.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zmrzlina
Mod
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Great reply, but I might add that it is "huset är målat". "Målade" is plural!

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/trilby16

It is easy-- at first. Vocabulary is charmingly easy. And people will tell you there's no difficult grammar, like in French. HOWEVER, with Swedish you have to conjugate adjectives, and learn all the different meanings of the little words (pa, som, till, att, and probably more) as well as when to use them. Then there are idioms that surprise you. But it's a great language, especially for English speakers.

Funny story -- I met a Chinese woman whose spoken English was poor, but she had lived in Sweden for a few years and spoke Swedish. Well, I was very excited to dish with her about Swedish. I said "I love it so much, so many cute words! Like snalla, snart, runt, barn, barnbarn, morfar, etc." She just stared blankly at me. I later realized that these words and sounds would only be "cute" coming from English. Who knows how they sound to a Chinese-speaker!

Anyway, enjoy! It is so much fun!!!

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MartyMcFly288103

I got transferred to Sweden last month and using duolingo to learn the language. As a native english speaker born and raised in Texas, the hardest part for me is getting the words to flow. Hearing a Swede speak is like a song being sung, with its peaks and valleys, highs and lows in pitch and tones. When I speak the most basic sentence, it sounds like nails scratching a chalk board. Good Lord its embarasing.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kenmerk
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I agree very much with this. The hardest thing about Swedish is getting your ear in, acclimatising to the rhythms of speech. I wouldn't worry too much about mimicking this sing-song rhythm yourself. If you hear Finns speaking Swedish, they speak it flatly too - for me as a foreigner it's much easier to understand a Finn speaking Swedish than a native Swede.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/trilby16

I feel that the large number of Swedish crime shows I watch has helped me tune my ear. I still can't speak it worth a damn but I can understand a lot as it is spoken.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Altopiano0
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Most Swedes are good in English so don´t panic.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WillAz1
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LOL, you are just starting and it will get harder. What I think about it; "You like it now and you will love it later."

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rumnraisin
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About your comment that it has the same structure as English, some researchers believe that English has been greatly influenced by Scandinavian languages.

See: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121127094111.htm

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KurtThornb

I promised my grandfather I would learn Swedish. We used to speak it together, but I am past what I learned all those years ago. Prepositions are really hard. They look and sound like English prepositions, two or three are the same, but the others are really false friends. That part is taking me a lot of work. The word order is more rigid than English. The vowels are an absolute pleasure. I am on day 69 straight on Duolingo. It is helping me with my French because Swedish and French have some identical vowels which English lacks. I feel as though when I keep my promise to my grandfather other languages will be come more naturally.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/George418878
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It's not that bad. There were a few hurdles for me:

  • Getting used to adding a suffix for definite nouns, instead of saying "the" or "an."

  • Learning which prepositions (på, för, åt, till) to use in which situations.

I've heard that Polish is notoriously difficult, so maybe you're just used to difficult languages.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/edo_farias
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Jag tror det där om prepositioner är alltid en av svårast på alla språk

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/uSGc9
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I think, it's not very easy. but Swedish is a very melodious language

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Super-Svensk
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Many native English speakers find Swedish pretty easy because a lot of the vocabulary sounds similar (or at least can be figured out easily in context) and because the grammar is not too dissimilar from English.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/fredrikov

Nouns are extremely complicated but syntax seems simpler than that of most Germanic languages, even simpler than Afrikaans which I also speak. Pronunciation starts a bit tricky, the sing-song tones are a bit hard to master, but with time I now manage to pronounce words properly. There's no such thing as "easy" languages but Swedish seems less intimidating, even less than Dutch which I'm not unfamiliar with.

7 months ago
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