"The girl sings for her cat."
Translation:Flickan sjunger för sin katt.
"Flickan sjunger för hennes katt." means the girl sings for other female's cat, isn't it?
The other female does not need to be present, hennes would still mean that it is some other female's cat.
The English sentence would be a lot better with "to", I think, but the Swedish sentence would get weird with "till". We've got to use the same sentences both ways, so this is a question of where we want to annoy our users: with shaky English translations, or by making it hard to translate back into Swedish.
Arnauti, you seem to be skeptical of using "for" in these types sentences, but I don't think you are correct to disparage such usage. When it is a performance art type deal, such as singing, reading, dancing, playing [music], in English it is very correct to say that you are doing it "for" someone. E.g. "Let me read a passage for you," "the pianist played for his mother." It is almost a cross between the "to/at" of direct action, such as "I throw a knife at you", and "for the benefit of/for the sake of", such as "I cooked an egg for breakfast".
If you can legitimately say that the girl could have potentially wanted the cat to benefit from or derive pleasure from her singing, "for" is very appropriate here in English. Thanks for your time!
Yeah I guess I put it a bit too strongly. I just figure that the default way of saying this in English would be to rather than for.
That might be the case—to me both sound fairly default especially for something like singing, but it might be regional. I had such a strong opinion above only because in a similar exercise I wrote "The man reads for the boy" and it was marked incorrect. I did report that one, but I can't find it now! Thanks for your reply.
Not entirely sure in which language you mean, but we do accept both "for" and "to" in English. Arnauti added them over three years ago. But till in Swedish is very unidiomatic here and should not be accepted.
No, you should always use för here. (Someone please correct me if I'm wrong)
Like half-perched on a rock, half in the water, with its head slowly bobbing along? :)
I believe åt is when there is travel involved. Used sometimes with åka. Jag åker ditt åt. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
We use för for things like berätta något för någon 'tell someone something', visa något för någon 'show something to someone' and many other cases like this, I like to call för the 'audience' preposition. We use till for giving things to people, and för for showing and telling (and similar meanings).
Hon sjunger till sin katt isn't totally impossible, but it would be more like She sings at her cat in English – not something you'd say without a very special context.
Do the words "för" and "till" have different meanings to you native speakers (the way the duolingo dictionary says) or do they both have their own distinct singular meanings, but are grouped in a different way than the English equivalents? I don't know if that makes sense, but I'm really trying to conceptualize the difference between these words so that I can try to understand them better.
Could someone explain when the proper time is to use 'tjenjen' instead of flickan?
I assume that you mean "tjej"/"tjejen". I feel that "flicka" is more used towards someone that's young. Though, I can't give you a simple list of rules for it. You just have to listen and read a lot to see when it fits and when it doesn't.
How do we know the use of "katten" in this case is referring to the girl's cat rather than just meaning "the cat"?
We don't really know that, it's just likely to be that way – Swedish very often uses the determinate form when English uses a possessive pronoun. Read more here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/6014446
Edit: PS the suggested Swedish sentence is Flickan sjunger för sin katt.
I understand the difference between till and åt in that till generally involves something being given to someone else (ie it's for you) and åt is if someone does something for you, but i still dont get the difference between för and åt
I like to call för 'the audience preposition'. While för has very many uses, the meaning of 'audience' is central and prominent. So the meanings you mention are the most central ones for till and åt, and the idea of an audience is for för.
what exactly do you mean by audience? like if someone is singing for me "to me", as opposed to for me "in my place"?
Yes. It's also used with many verbs like visa något för något 'show something to someone' and the like.
It's a fine sentence but it isn't really implied that it's her cat that way.
How i know when to use för and till? "Mannen köper kläder till barnet" or "Kocken lagar mat åt oss" both mean "for"...
I wish there was a rule for when to use för or till. It's doing my nut in.
Can someone, a native speaker preferably, explain why these are used in this way. I see no rhyme or reason which means it's going to be difficult to get it right. These are from the questions:
Mannen köper kläder till barnet - for the child
Yet, flickan sjunger för sin katt - for her cat.
Yet, ankan simmer till flickan - to the girl.