"Jag har ingen häst."

Translation:I have no horse.

November 25, 2014

47 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

How does "Jag har ingen häst" compare to "Jag har inte en häst?"

The translation Duo gave me was "I do not have a horse"... would that be more like "Jag har inte en häst"? And "Jag har ingen häst" would be more like "I do not have any horses"?

Tack!! :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EduZamora1

Yes, I was also wondering if "I don't have any horse" should be correct here.


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

I think the thread below this goes a bit too far (not your fault of course, EduZamora1). After all, the recommended answer is I have no horse, we're not trying to make anyone say I don't have any horse, we just accept it as an answer. But felt I should point out here that ingen häst can NOT mean 'no horse meat' in Swedish. That would have to be inget hästkött.


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

in american english, you can only say "i don't have any horses". i think this may be different in other dialects?


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

Yeah, that's not entirely correct. "I don't have any horse" is correct English, whether it's British, American, Australian, or Canadian. It's simply not a common thing to say anymore. But think of it this way:

If you find yourself in a situation where you're being asked to suddenly claim a horse—say it's running around town causing issues and somehow you've been identified as its owner—you might then respond to the person asserting that the horse is yours "But I don't have any horse!"

Now, you could just as well have said "But I don't have a horse" or "But I don't own a/any horse", but that's really a matter of formality and preference.

Basically, "any" is a determiner that can refer to both singular and plural nouns.

Edit (4 months later): I probably shouldn't have tried to assert the others as wrong here. I took issue not with their aversion to the sentence, but to their suggestion the sentence not be accepted. As the report function should be used for 'incorrect or unnatural' sentence, and I do not consider "I don't have any horse" as either incorrect or unnatural, simply uncommon/rare usage.


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

i think that used to be the case but is archaic to the point of being dead nowadays

i asked 17 native english speakers and they were all like "that doesn't make sense, unless you're talking about horse meat"


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

Perhaps this is a dialectal thing, because i don't feel there's anything remotely odd about "I don't have any horse" as a native speaker.


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

Huh, forgot I had commented on this sentence.

@cayvie Yes, I agree it is quite the rare and formal sounding usage, but sentences should be removed based on correctness, not just on how common or uncommon it is. And because we don't have any context for this sentence, it could very well be referring to horse meat like the others here say would be the situation such a translation makes the most sense in. And as I stated in a different comment, it's most likely regional. I'm from Northern California, Central Valley. I actually hear the word 'any' used in this way every day (now that I think about it and recall conversations I've had with people). The first example that comes to mind is "any day of the week" which is not idiomatic and I would consider a common phrase.

@chaander All of this mention of horse meat makes me think the issue is deeper than just regional differences. Perhaps it's the intonation and placement of stress in the sentence? When I think of it, I can place the stress in one of three places: On "I", on "have", or on "horse". In the case of "horse" the only way the sentence doesn't refer to meat in that case (which is what I would default to) is possibly with a specific and peculiar intonation that would register to me as 'emphatic+slightly questioning without asking a question, so possibly rhetorical'. That one's hard to describe, really.

And overall I'd just like to mention that personally I'd never translate this sentence using "any". I'm much too comfortable with the idea of the 'negative article' from German and Dutch to not translate this as "I don't have a horse."

Sorry for such a long comment guys and hopefully this issue can go down as a non-issue from now on; everyone is right to a degree, you guys more so than I since the majority seems to favor your interpretation, so there really isn't any need for further debate. Good luck in your learning! :)

~Lupo


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

I agree, "I don't have any horse" implies, to me, that you don't have any horse meat available to eat.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spenczar5

I don't think this is accurate. "Any" should precede either a plural ("do you have any books?") or an uncountable or 'mass' noun ("do you have any water?"). Using it in front of a singular sounds wrong to my ear, except for a handful of idioms like "any idea" and "any day"


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

It's most likely regional for you then. Where I'm from it would be perfectly acceptable to say and still make sense, even grammatically (if you consider 'any' a determiner that need not necessarily precede a plural noun; for example "any person").

Also, I feel like it's used mostly in exclamations of incredulity, where you may be confused by the situation or something. If someone came up to me and said "Your horse has escaped and is causing problems in town" my response would be the given sentence to translate: "I don't have any horse," said with a tone of questioning and emphatic confusion.


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

My understanding is that "ingen" is "no" for an en-word, whereas inte is "not". I think Duolingo might be allowing both because "I have no horse" and "I do not have a horse" mean the same thing. But I note that in earlier lessons, it didn't allow us to answer similarly how it's allowing us to here, i.e. "i have no/i do not have" because of the different meanings of the individual words, i guess. Does that make sense?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David7697

I thought ingen/inget/inga were all used to negate nouns, whereas inte is used to negate verbs.


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

Ahh that makes sense, which makes inget = no for ett words. Tack så mycket! :)


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

If you ever decide to dabble around in German or Dutch, they have something similar as well. In German it's "kein" and in Dutch it's "geen".

Basically, the way you want to translate these is as 'no' or as 'not a' because the words for English 'not' (nicht/niet) can be used in many different ways that can change the meaning of the sentence slightly, but that would be difficult for an English speaker to distinguish. Unfortunately, it has been quite some time since I've done German or Dutch on here and cannot produce proper examples to demonstrate this to you.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/c0d3br34k3r

I would think the former would imply something like, sometimes I have horses but right now I don't, while the latter means I don't ever really have horses.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Salkan27

I'm not sure if this question has been replied somewhere else by a native Swedish moderator, but here it is: What is the exact difference between inte and ingen?


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

The same as in "I don't have a horse" and "I have no horse". Negating the verb or the noun.


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

So "inte" is like "niet" and "ingen" is like "geen" in Dutch?


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

Yes! Although Swedish can use the construction "inte en" where "niet een" in Dutch would become geen.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NicholasCh5

How do you say "I do not have any horses ? " because that's what I thought this sentence meant


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

Jag har inga hästar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David7697

Would this also translate correctly as "I have no horses"?


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

Yup. (It's even closer to that since you can also say Jag har inte några hästar for 'I don't have any horses')


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

so this is an example from the 'tips and notes' in which inte negates the noun and inga etc. negate the verb?

I was reading all of these comments and just got confused- i don't understand where the word 'any' translated out of the swedish sentence... can you please explain that some more?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoseeV64

"inte" negates the verb and "ingen/inget/inga" negates the noun; "not" versus "no" = "not any".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sotnosen93

The "any" is the "inga", though it's more akin to "not any". You wouldn't use "inga" for "do you have any horses?", for example.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jim658990

That (I don´t have any horses´) also sounds most natural to me, an American English speaker. Also ´I don´t have a horse´ seems good, and better than ´I don´t have any horse´. However since we´re learining Swedish here, it might be the wrong hair to split. Oh! I just tried ´I haven´t any horse´, and that was accepted. That is a good English way to say it.


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

Yet I do have a kingdom.


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

”Det där” would be ”that” in that context. ”Att” is a conjunction as in ”I think that he’s coming”.


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

Ahh yes, I had that realization a little later in the day. I just forgot where I had put the comment. Tack så mycket :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LaurelCook2

True as hell and Im very sad about not having a horse but I guess if everything works out in the end, then I'll have a horse.


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

Is 'jag har ingen häst ' another equivalent of 'jag har inte någon häst ' ? ingen- no, någon- any, inte någon -no (acc. to google translate)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sotnosen93

I don't think that would be a completely unheard-of sentence, depending on what tone you say it in, but I can say that it sounds more colloquial than "Jag har ingen häst" to me.


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

I get it since it is an en word, but when can I use Inga?


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

With the plural. Jag har inga hästar 'I have no horses'


[deactivated user]

    Why not inga?


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

    That's the plural form.

    Edit: Not really a definite, thanks to AmbassadorTigger for pointing that out below.


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

    Minor nitpick, but does it really make sense to talk about a definite form of ingen?


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

    No, you're right. It doesn't really, especially since it's a pronoun. Thanks, I'll edit that out.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ErionTresk1

    So as I understand this, I think it is like this: Ingen is used for en-nouns, inget is used for ett-nouns and inga is the plural form. Is this true, or have I understood it the wrong way?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoseeV64

    Yes, you understood correctly.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ErionTresk1

    Tack så mycket :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Smith276975

    what's the different between inga inte ingen ? - inte = no - ingen = no for singular maybe but what's the different from inte? - inga = also no but for plural - and are there any other inte form?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoseeV64

    You're thinking in the right direction.
    inte means "not" and denies the verb in the sentence;
    The others deny a noun:
    ingen means "not a" for en-nouns ( = no );
    inget means "not a" for ett-nouns ( = no );
    inga is the plural form of ingen and inget.

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