"She is not drinking beer, but coffee."

Translation:Hon dricker inte öl utan kaffe.

December 20, 2014

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Is it more common to use "utan" instead of "men" in this sentence formulation?


When you have a negation in the main clause, you switch men for utan, so it’s caused by the inte.


Doesn't utan also mean without ? Ex. Som en sjö utan vatten ,is that correct ?

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That is correct! It sound like you've listened to "När jag blundar" :) Great song!


Ahh yes,i just love the song,i've listened to it at least 50 times in a week haha :D The music is what actually made me want to learn Swedish,Sabaton to be precise.I just find that songs are a good way to learn the vocabulary better,much like i did with English.

However,i'm having trouble finding some good music to listen. Thanks for reply


I wish I could give you all my lingots for saying Sabaton are your motivation, that's the exact same reason that I'm doing the course!


Hi! My name is Lucy, and I agree with you, music and songs are the best way to learn a language. I actually started learning Swedish because of Måns Zelmerlöw. If you don't have any music to listen to, you could try him...? :) And there are lots of interviews in Swedish to practise with... :) Trust me, I know! :)


I started because I wanted to understand In Flames posts in swedish! Personally Sabaton is not my kind of music but that inspiration is great, have a Lingot for it! :D


I recommend "Magnum Bonum". They're a Swedish rock band that was popular in the 80s


diggiloo diggiley - herreys


Sabaton are also the reason why I'm learning Swedish! They're so greaat!


Other style, but helped me with vocabulary: Inte vara ägd, from Millencolin ;)


Finntroll and opeth are both good metal bands with (audible) swedish lyrics


Valkaren by Katatonia and evergrey posting in svenska are my reasons to learn svenska.


What does "När jag blundar" actually mean? :) P.S. I love Eurovision too!


When I close my eyes


So in a way, it almost means 'instead'?


You could think of it as ’but rather’.


Then would I be right to liken this to "sino" in Spanish?


Ella no bebe/toma cerveza, sino que (bebe/toma) café. I, as an Argentinian, wouldn't drop the part between brackets, but I guess most people may (including Argentinians). Now to the question, the "utan" does translate into "sino que" in Spanish.


My Spanish is not very good, but I think it’s the same yes.


Would "Hon dricker öl men inte kaffe" be right then for the negation is not in the main clause?


I don't understand please explain more


It's difficult for me not to read this as "She doesn't drink beer without coffee". If I wanted to say "I don't eat fish without salt", would I say: "Jag äter inte fisk utan salt" or does that mean "I don't eat fish, but salt"?


You're right in that it might well get quite ambiguous. In written Swedish, the comma makes it clear what you mean. And in spoken language, I think the stress would be a little bit different in the respective uses, although I can't really say how or why. And if nothing else works, there's always context in actual usage of Swedish.


That's exactly how I read it too!


I understand words having multiple meanings but that's a tough one. It's practically the exact opposite of its other meaning.


Is the usage of "utan" here equivalent to German "sondern"?


But is it still okay to use 'men' since duo accepted my answer


why" men kaffe" is wrong? confused! utan means without right?

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"Utan" has two meanings. One is without which you point out here, and the other is a conjunction when you want to point out that someone/something, contrary to what one might think, does/is something completely different.

This is what we see here. Contrary to what you might believe, she is not drinking beer, but coffee.

In English, "but" fills this function, but in Swedish we use the word "utan". "Men" would be completely wrong here since that word doesn't have that function.

This is a good example to show that word-for-word translation doesn't work.


What's the deal with dropping the comma? Are commas less used in Swedish than English?


Definitely. We only use commas when it's necessary for clarity these days – this has changed a lot in the last 50 years or so. Adding a comma here in Swedish wouldn't be wrong per se, but we wouldn't normally do it. It looks much better without it to me.


So utan is used in sentences where there is a "not this but that" construction if I understand correctly? So like "echter" in dutch. Or I guess "but actually"in english (closest I can think of atm or maybe however. Can't find a good match. Etymologically echter and the german word "aber" are related. But I think "aber" is used as a general "but" ("maar" in dutch, which sort of seems related to "men" or french "mais").

Context can usually make things clearer. but you could have the instance: I don't drink coffee/tea without milk, or drinking milk instead of coffee/tea. That would make an ambiguous sentence I would think.

"Hon dricker inte kaffe utan mjölk."


Would saying "Hon dricker inte öl, utan hon dricker kaffe" work as well?


Yes, that's a correct sentence, but not an accepted answer since it adds a bit too much (you could have said She's not drinking beer but she is drinking coffee in English if this was what you wanted to say).


So would it be like "She is not drinking beer, but rather coffee?'


So 'utan' is more like 'but rather', and 'men' is more like the generic 'but'?


Are men and utan switchable? If not, when do I use them?


why is it öl and not ölja? what is the difference? (I hope I didn't mix it)


öl is beer and ölja is oil


The word "ölja" doesn't exist. Oil is "olja".


It accepted "men" in place of "utan". I did think about using utan here though...


This is very unclear to me. Is she drinking beer without coffee??


Utan komma betyder meningen att she does not drink beer without coffee. Kommat gör att det blir mellan öl och kaffe, men utan gör så hon bara dricker öl när hon dricker kaffe.


Why does "utan" means "but" if it means "without" ? How am I supposed to remember this? When I see utan I think automatically at the word "without". Sorry for my English.


There are confusing words in any language - and words with multiple seemingly unrelated meanings. I'm sorry, but there's no better reason, really. Languages evolve weirdly sometimes - not just Swedish.


What's the difference of meaning between men and utan (in order to mean because) ?


"Men" means "but" whereas "utan" means "but rather" in this context (it can also mean "without").

//Native speaker


Why is "Hon dricker öl inte utan kaffe" incorrect? (I thought it would disambiguate the sentence nicely.)

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