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"A girl eats a sandwich."

Translation:En flicka äter en smörgås.

November 23, 2014

35 Comments


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

Why is "en" used for smorgas vs "ett"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lundgren8

You can’t find logic in the genders. They’re often arbitrary. In this case it’s because -gås means ”goose” and living things tend to be ”en”, but normally there is no logic.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LilAutiste1

Wait so we've been saying Smores Geese?!


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

No, "butter goose". :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LilAutiste1

Ett and En are different. It's like To and Too. Same thing, different situation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lilac1250Laurent

I found that ett is kind of used for person subjects and en for objects


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

Almost all living things are en-words, yes, but that's the extent of it. There are loads of en-word objects, and some living ett-words.


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

Is this from where the English word 'smorgasbord' comes from?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Shibboleth

Yup! The ancestry of smorgasbord goes directly back to Swedish (guess you'd even call it a loan word?). The Swedish "smörgås" meaning sandwich, and the Swedish "bord" meaning table become combined to form the English word smorgasbord which generally means a large spread of food (typically on a wide table unsurprisingly).


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

Yes, it's not even a question of whether it's a loan word, it's 100% a loan word straight from Swedish. There are others, such as "ombudsman", and, although not exactly Swedish so much as Old Norse, "saga" - among many more.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Shibboleth

Thanks for the info! It seemed obvious to call it a loan word, but I didn't know if the term had some stricter definition when it came to linguistics so I decided to convey my own uncertainty, lol


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

Don't you just love how the word "smörgås" looks? It's so beautiful with that ö and that å ^^ hahaha


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

I worte ett in place of en.. And the app said it was wrong.. Why i thought both mean one!


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

Both words mean one, but you can't use them randomly with nouns. You'll need to learn if it's en or ett for each noun.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Krisis91

The meaning of "macka" and "smörgås" is "sandwich"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shamin146431

what is the different between flicka/flickor


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ewi845765

Why is Flickan wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/devalanteriel
  • en flicka = a girl
  • flickan = the girl

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Astrid774523

To my english ear, both vowels in smögås sound almost identical. Anyone able to help distinguishing ö from å?


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

As very rough approximations, the ö in this word sounds like the vowel in "birth", and the å like the vowel in "boss".


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

... or (most likely depending on accent) å would be like the 'o' in "horse".

Using my own accent in Swedish and English the word "Smörgås" could almost be transcribed as "s-m-(h)er-gorse", as long as you stick to a Brittish accent where the 'r's in "her" and "gorse" don't make too much sound. Almost...

(Both vowels are long in "Smörgås" where I live, but there are variations between different parts of Sweden - some use short ö and lång å, some use lång ö and short å, and some use short versions for both.)


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

The pronunciation with two short vowels is actually overwhelmingly more common, that's why I use it as a main example.


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

Quite possible, yes. I don't really know, as I only hear that version when watching TV. My mother's relatives (southeast) use long-short and my father's relatives (living on some of the islands outside Gothenburg) use short-long.


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

Is there an indicator of whether to use "ett" or "en"? Or is this something that needs to be memorized?


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

There are some indicators, but mostly a case of memorisation. I've written a little more about it e.g. here: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/26420394

Be sure to check out the link in that post as well.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/matthew583808

So apparently ett words are for inanimate objects and en words are for animate objects (google said so, so it must be right haha) so why are there words such as en smörgås or en tidning?


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

Because that's wrong. Nearly all living things are en-words, because en-words are the result of the old masculine and feminine genders merging. But that's about the extent of it. It's not a very good rule at all.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Faraz888538

Why not ett flicka?


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

All Swedish nouns have grammatical genders. These aren't masculine and feminine, though. Almost all living things are en-words, including flicka.


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

Except "a child" is "ett barn"... Do u ever say en barn?


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

Nope. Swedish used to have masculine and feminine a long time ago, but they merged into what are now en-words. Hence why barn is an ett-word - a child is inherently gender-neutral if you don't specify.


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

Is it en macka, or ett ?

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