The Swedish Struggle...
I didn't think that Swedish would be the one to start this confusion!
Ni -> My French feels that a pronoun starting with "N" is "we"... but it's "you (pl.)"
Vi -> my French (pronoun starting with "V") AND 1st gen. Russian tells me it's "you (pl.)" but it's "we" similar to German "Wir"...
And for the Swedish definite articles... my German goes against me in assuming that things ending in -n (most Swedish definite nouns I've encountered so far) are plural... but obviously are not. x_x
Nevertheless I'm enjoying Swedish so very much now! I have two native Swedish friends who help a lot already and have much thanks to the Swedish course contributors for bringing this wonderful language to Duolingo!
Yes -- I was actually thinking of third-person address forms in general (including the various title/name combinations) but since we're talking about pronouns here I suppose that's the relevant one :-). Now I come to think of it, I haven't seen "han" or "hon" as much as the name- and title-based third-person address forms. But you can certainly find "han" in Hemsöborna, and even in Pappan och Havet.
Yes, that's the one... but as Annika reminded me there can be important differences between wondering aloud about Mister Duo Admin, Duo Admin, Duo Admin Rémy, etc. or just plain "him".
I like the fact that Swedish and Finnish decided that this was all a bit too direct and confrontational, and moved on to just wondering aloud whether the coffee itself has permission to exist.
You people are killing me! :-)
I had to think about hdcanis' wondering aloud for a few minutes before I got the right rotund-old-lady-in-1950's-film thing going, and understood it. Then it was another couple of minutes before I (for the first time in my life!) reflected on the absurdity of the existence of coffee...
Either I am getting slow, or things are getting complicated (or both).
Not to be nitpicking, but contemporary German actually uses the third person plural to be polite ("Sie"), just like Danish ("de"), where it is, however, not commonly used.
German usage of the second plural ("Ihr") as a polite form of addressing a single person is archaic (and used to be reserved to nobility mostly).
Using the second plural, however, is actually what the English do all the time as the former second singular ("thou") is considered archaic today.
I haven't had that experience. And the article you link to does state that this differs a lot between different geographical areas and different social settings.
Some older people do enjoy the whole almost gamelike thing whereby they "invite" a younger person to call them du, and thereby simultaneously bring the conversation to a less formal and more friendly level while also showing that they are the one making this decision (ie. they are the one held in higher regard of the two of you).
Having been on the Danish course for a while, I was not that much confused by "ni" and "vi". But what really bothers me particularily with this language combination is a certain shift in the meals of the day.
"breakfast" -> "morgenmad" (Danish, literally "morning food"), "frukost" (Swedish)
"lunch" -> "frokost" (Danish), "lunch" (Swedish)
"dinner" -> "aftensmad" (Danish, literally "evening food"), "middag" (Swedish, means "noon" in Danish (and Swedish?))
Is there a cultural thing behind this or is it just like it is?
Apparently, because the main meal used to be eaten at lunch time, whereas most people nowadays eat their main meal in the late afternoon or early evening. So the name of the main meal stayed the same but the timing changed.
(It's like the usage of "dinner" in the UK: it depends on the area and the (subjective) social class, but dinner tends to mean the main / warm meal, whether it's eaten at lunch time or later.)
I would never mean lunch when I say middag, but as you see from Helen's answer, the usage varies. I think in this course, though, middag = main evening meal and lunch = lunch.
Learning French, I have had now a couple of hey, wait -moments with "en" when I quickly glance at a Swedish sentence...and so far only once I have put in "et" instead of "och" even though I of course know the difference, it just takes a while for the brain to rewire itself :)
Historically, you (pl) in Swedish was I (cognate with English ye, Dutch jij, German ihr) and verbs with I as their subject took the person agreement suffix -en. Thanks to the frequent inversion of second person subjects and verbs, -en I gradually became reinterpreted as -e ni. Scandinavian på has a similar etymology; it comes from Old Norse upp á 'up on/in'.
So many courses all at once while youre just starting others @.@ I'm learning 4 but I worked on the first two separately for a while before adding anymore. It might help you to pick one or two to start with, finish those tree and add another. But, mainly do what works best for you. :)