1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Finnish
  4. >
  5. "Hän ei puhu ruotsia vaan nor…

"Hän ei puhu ruotsia vaan norjaa."

Translation:She is not speaking Swedish but Norwegian.

June 27, 2020

18 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Foxtrott_4

What is the difference between 'mutta' and 'vaan'?


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

Vaan is used when you say "not A but B". In English, we can sometimes say "but rather" or "but instead" for this meaning.


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

Like "aber" vs. "sondern" in German.


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

Should "She doesn't speak Swedish but Norwegian" be accepted?


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

I don't think so. Without a context "She doesn't speak Swedish" means she doesn't know Swedish. However, you could say, "When she is in Oslo, she doesn't speak Swedish, but Norwegian." But to be clear you need that adverbial marker to call for the simple present. Otherwise, you would have to say, "She doesn't speak Swedish, but she does speak Norwegian [although it doesn't matter because they understand her in Stockholm anyway]."


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

I had to choose between vaan and vai. Is the vai version really wrong?


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

Yes, that's the idea of the exercise: only one of the two words can possibly make a sensible Finnish sentence.


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

I realize the concept, I'm actually asking how would I say "She is not speaking Swedish or Norwegian?"


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

Hän ei puhu ruotsia eikä norjaa.


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

and how about "tai"?


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

I can't imagine ever saying this English sentence, although I know what it means. The most natural English would be "She is speaking Norwegian, not Swedish." Is that accepted?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rk5I3

That would be "Hän puhuu norjaa eikä ruotsia" in Finnish.


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

Why can't one use "vai" is you fill in the blank to read She is not speaking Swedish OR Norwegian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rk5I3

Vai is only used in questions, when you want to ask "either or" (i.e. XOR in programming), for example "Do you want an exchange or a refund?" (Not both, but one must be chosen.) It's not used in statements at all.


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

Thanks, that was my question as well.


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

There was no translation for what I was supposed to choose. How am I supposed to know how to pick between "vaan" and "vain" if there's no way to know what's being looked for?


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

Because only one of them combines with the rest to make a correct sentence.


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

The grammatically correct sentence would be "She is speaking not Swedish but Norwegian." Yeah, I know, who really uses this form, but it would at least be nice if it didn't come up as incorrect! Reported.

Learn Finnish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.