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

'Ni' VS 'Du'

They both means 'You', But what is the difference of these words?

November 22, 2014

11 Comments


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

Du is singular, ni is plural. Ni can also be formal singular, but that's not common these days.


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

https://www.duolingo.com/comment/5591933 There is more discussion here from native swedes on the formality of singular ni


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

If i had to guess, i would say either one is formal and one is informal OR one is singular and one is plural, but I am not proficient enough in Swedish specifically to give you a much more specific answer /:


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

Not or - both. But I guess the only time you need ni in a formal context is when you receive your Nobel prize or get knighted.


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

So if you get knighted would you be a knight that says "Ni!"?


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

I just came across this ancient thread from googling this same question but this comment was the highlight.... thank you. I will never forget this now.


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

I have only completed a couple lessons of Swedish, most of my Foreign language experience is with German which I've been learning for about a year now and a little bit with Spanish, I was merely trying to make the best guess I could with the knowledge I had :)


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

Nah, not really. You can say "du" to right about everyone. I can recommend the discussion in this thread: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/5591933


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

Well, the reactions in the thread support my point, and so do Wikipedia http://sv.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ni_(personligt_pronomen) and SAOL. (Note that "receiving the Nobel prize" and "getting knighted" both mean you talk to the king.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ray.Kuryla

I appreciate the help from all of you fellow learners. I guess what's really hard for me is this formal vs. informal "You". In French, Spanish and German, I always am uncomfortable with "You" because (other than with close acquaintances) I never know which one to use. I learned in Brazilian Portuguese that they all use "Você" for "You" all the time whereas it used to be the formal "You". So, I guess "You" will be easy in Swedish.

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