1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swedish
  4. >
  5. "Nötköttet"


Translation:The beef

December 10, 2014



How would you actually pronounce "nötköttet"? I always hear something like, " notshotet" :)


What you hear is correct.


Actually, I think the sound is not correct on this one. In this forum section, I hear a (perhaps older) woman pronouncing the word fine. But when doing the exercise it sounden like a (perhaps younger) woman not pronouncing the T in the end. Which you could omit, but also could be pronounced. Reported it because I thought it sounded weird.


The newest voice often cuts off too early, and I agree this seems to be happening here. It's going to be removed soon, though.

The older voice has slightly weird stress but otherwises pronounces correctly, as you say.

Confusingly, mianai and Zmrzlina wrote their comments back when there was a different voice from both of those above. :)

As for bad audio, we can do nothing about that, so while I really appreciate the error reports on audio quality, they're mostly just pointless in practice, I'm afraid. :(


Alright! Just wanted to raise the subject so non-native speakers knew.


Oh absolutely, that's great. Just adding some context. :)


Fun fact: the Finnish equivalent of SPAM is often colloquially called Nötkötti due to the quite dominant positioning of the Swedish name of the product (which iirc translates to something bland like "pork and beef product") on the label.


Interesting -- although Spam does not, in fact, contain any beef!


Any English speakers here ever use the word "neat" for cattle? It's the cognate of "nöt" but I've only ever encountered it in etymological dictionaries.


I've only encountered it (outside dictionaries) in the compound neatsfoot. (Which is not something I think I've ever needed to say myself.)


I've only ever heard it in the context of "neatsfoot oil", which is made from the shin bones and feet, but not the hooves, of cattle. My dad swears by it for conditioning leather baseball gloves. :)


I never would have guessed that was a use for it!


Ha, same here. Neatsfoot, most used by traditional cattle-raisers I would guess.


'Neat' is occasionally a useful word to know if you're solving English cryptic crosswords. That's the only place I've encountered it.


I like my whisky "neat"; e.g., with NO ice!


She keeps her bedroom neat and clean.


That's not correct at all ! In addition to the other offerings, things or situations can be neat, e.g. interesting.


No, I don't use exactly use it every day. All the same -- when learning the Swedish word for "beef" -- knowing that "neat" is an old English word for "cattle" is ...kinda neat :)


Is "mince" not an acceptable translation?


No, because mince is "köttfärs", meaning minced meat of any kind. Nötkött is beef, which is about the origin of the meat (i.e. what animal it was).


Thanks for the clarification!



The word -färs kan also be mixed with meat origin. So nötfärs is minced meat from cow, while fläskfärs is minced pork etc.


Since kott is translated to English as "meat", can it be said that not is translated as "cow", to arrive at "cow meat"?


No, "nöt" is an archaic word meaning "cattle". Cow is "ko" in Swedish.


Apologies for the lack of umlaut.


I know what you mean. However, if I understand correctly, the Swedes do not regard 'ö' as 'o + dieresis (umlaut dots)', but rather as a separate letter in its own right.


Could Cow meat or Veal be accepted?


I guess cow meat would work, veal is kalvkött if I’m not mistaken. (My meat vocabulary isn’t huge).


I guess technically beef is cow meat, but it is never called that. :)


Why do we call things like chicken and fish by their animal names, but can't do it for mammals (cow=beef, pig=pork, calf=veal, deer=venison, etc.)? Are we too squeamish to admit what we're eating?


As far as modern English goes, it has to do with the different languages that the poor and rich spoke in feudal England. The lower class (Saxons) referred to them as animals, as they were the ones raising the livestock. The upper class Norman rulers used the French terms to refer to them ... although by that point the animal was a food product. And, since the Saxons couldn't really afford to eat cow/pig/lamb/etc., they didn't generally refer to them as food with the English terms.

Interestingly, chicken (and fish I presume) were cheap enough to be eaten by all classes, so the English term was used in both cases.

At least that's what the common thinking is.

It sure is convenient for modern English speakers to be able to disassociate themselves from where their food came from, though.


Have a lingot for teaching me something new and wonderful :)


As a vegan since 1995, I've read something about the subject of how we reference food animals. This is new. You get a Lingot ! Thank you.


Because of us borrowing the French words


yes, you are spot on, and, while I'm vegan, I appreciate your interest in calling a rose a rose. You get a Lingot.


nope, they rejected cow meat.


Is 'oxkött' wrong?


Not really, although that would specifically mean meat from an ox.


Why is kött meat, but nötköttet the beef?


Nötkött means, very literally, cattle-meat. "Nöt" is an old word, rarely used anymore, referring to livestock.


it sounds like its saying "Not shiotet"...i cant say this around english speaking people, they always look at me funny when i say shiot for meat, it sounds like the dung word


as a vegan, I'd say, sounds correct to me! :-)


Does the ö sound vary, depending on whether it is followed by a single or a double consonant? In "Nököttet, " for example, the first ö sounds like "ə" (schwa sound) while the second ö sounds like there is more "o" mixed into the schwa.


Yes - it's either a long or a short vowel. You'll encounter them in the lesson notes. :)


Where do I find the "lesson notes?


After you click on the topic circle, you are presented a list of lessons for that topic. At the bottom of that lessons page you may see Lesson Notes. Not all lesson pages have them, usually only the grammar (as opposed to vocabulary) lessons, and then not all of those.


In addition, I need to add that - unfortunately and annoyingly - lesson notes are not available for all (any?) mobile apps.


do i pronounce the "nöt"bit, is it "ner"?


I think it's closest to the English "note". Vowels are tricky.


It sounds like "net shet ut" to me. The letter ö always sounds like eh to me, except when it sounds like an oh sound, like in björn. Still trying to get a handle on that sound.


Confused? Answer would be appreciared. What decides whether a word will get "et" or "en" at the end?


That depends on the word's gender. My info post for beginners has an explanation on them here: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/26420394/Answers-to-some-common-questions-on-grammar-that-beginners-have


why cant you say en /ett kött ?


You can say ett kött - "a meat".


Old voice is better


Vad är nötköttet?


The beef - just as it says.


I know. I'm just translating the US slang "what's the beef?" into Swedish.


To all users and developers - I'm super disgusted by this required focus on eating dead animals. Pork. Beef. That's pig flesh and cow flesh. That will be my first answer in protest, on behalf of all dead animals on all plates all over by whatever name. :-( Veganly yours. Live simply, so others can Simply Live.


Hello. I'm a member of an animal rights club in the USA (not PETA; it's a small, local organization). The way I see it is this: If I didn't know the word for "veal" in English, I couldn't tell someone, "I don't eat veal." Or if they offered me some other dish, and I didn't know what "venison" meant, for example, I wouldn't know whether I could eat it or not. (Yes, I could ask someone, but the point of studying a language is to learn its vocabulary!) I would really have a hard time navigating restaurants in America looking for what I could eat, if I didn't know the names of the things I want to avoid.

It's the same way for other places and languages. If someone offers you nötköttet, it's better to know what it means and say "no", and perhaps even talk about why you don't eat it, than not to understand what it means and have to waste time figuring out that the speaker is talking about the flesh of cattle.

As far as the discussion of the origins of the English words veal, venison, etc., I must say that as an amateur historian and etymologist, I do find the origins of words interesting, even if they are about subjects which I find distasteful. It doesn't hurt your ability to be an advocate for animals' rights (or human rights) to know the history behind words because they also tell the history of how animals and people are (ab)used.

Just my 2 cents.


Common concepts with which you do not agree nevertheless play an important role in learning a language. If you do not eat animal products, you are going to find it difficult to order the food you do eat. Besides, the course features plenty of words for vegetables, fruit, terms like vegetarian, etc. I'm vegan, too, and I have zero issue with this.

Learn Swedish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.