"I am trying to open the door."
Translation:Jeg står og prøver på at åbne døren.
I don't seem to totally understand when to use til, på, or even just no preposition (other than with modals, which seems relatively straight forward in this sense). Is there a rule for which preposition is appropriate and when, and is it determined by the first or second verb in the series, or something altogether different? For example, does at prøve always use på, or is it at åbne that does, or can multiple prepositions be used with different shades of meaning? Thanks!
The prepositions to be used are usually depending on the preceding verb. "At prøve på", for instance, means "to try (your hand at something)". The principle is not too different from English where, for instance, you "rely on something", "reply to something", or "believe in something".
Choosing which preposition to use, however, is a lot more difficult and needs mainly practice and getting a feel of the language.
What I can't seem to get my head around is the use of "står og prøver" or 'ved at prøve" etc. I used 'ved at prøve" and was marked correct yet the translation above is "står og prøver". Is there any method in which form to use?
Which version you use is mainly a matter of personal taste. There are three main groups:
- at stå/gå/sidde/ligge og [verb] - You combine the [verb] with something you're currently doing. You should choose a combination that makes sense, of course. "Jeg ligger og danser" sounds kinda odd.
- at være i gang/færd med at [verb] - This is literally the continuous form, "to be going with it". You're in the middle of doing your action.
- at være ved at [verb] - This can either mean you're currently doing your action or you haven't started yet and are just about to do it. Literally you're "at it".
When should I ask or state the other or myself are/standing or sitting in Dnish sentences?
If you want to put emphasis on something that is happening right now.
- Jeg læser. - I'm reading.
- Jeg sidder og læser. - I am reading right now.
Skype, for instance, is asking you to "Fortæl dine venner, hvad du går og laver" - "Tell your friends what you are doing right now".
It doesn't even need to be a movement/position you're actually in, but at least it should make sense.