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  5. "Tolken förstår troligtvis va…

"Tolken förstår troligtvis vad han säger."

Translation:The interpreter probably understands what he is saying.

November 30, 2014



I translated it as "The interpreter probably understands what he says" and its wrong - why?


I find this ambiguous. Does it mean:

1.) Does the interpreter understand what he (himself) is saying?, or

2.) Does the interpreter understand what he (someone else) is saying?

In English we might say, "Do you think he understands what he's saying?" meaning, does the speaker understand the gravity of what he (himself) is saying? Or, is the speaker babbling on without actual knowledge?"


From what I understand it is that the interpreter probably understands what the person he is talking to is saying. If it were as your first example it would use sin rather than han.


You cannot use "sin" in this sentence. It is just as ambiguous as the English one.

Tolken förstår vad han själv säger/ what he himself is saying


If sin is a reflexive pronoun how is it that ambiguous? Sorry to divert from the original question I'd just like to properly understand. Thanks.


You cannot use sin because it means his (or hers or its depending on who it points back to). So it would be like saying the interpreter doesn't understand what his is saying. Since we can't use that here, the sentence is just as ambiguous in Swedish as in English.

If we rewrite the sentence so that we could use his in English, we would get to choose between sin and hans in Swedish and then we could make it unambiguous. Like, The interpreter doesn't understand his statement – ambiguous vs. Tolken förstår inte hans/sin utsaga or hans/sitt uttalande – unambiguous.


Yes, sin is 'one's own' but there's also sig used with reflexive verbs to mean 'oneself'. So there are a few words to choose from :)


Ah, ok, thanks. I didn't realise sin specifically meant his/her self, I just thought it meant ones self in general. Thanks.


How about "likely" in place of "probably"?


Sure, I'll add that. :)


Is "troligtvis" related to the verb "tro"?


Yes, they are related. Trolig means probable.


Is "The interpreter apparently understands what he is saying" really wrong? Doesn't troligtvis mean "we believe it is so", "it seems so"?


Yes, but "apparently" means e.g. "it would seem so", not "we believe so". The Swedish word for "apparently" is tydligen.


Can I use here möjligtvis intead of troligtvis?


No, that means "possibly".

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