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  5. "Var är polisen?"

"Var är polisen?"

Translation:Where are the police?

December 23, 2014

9 Comments


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

How do you differentiate between "Where are the police?" and "Where is the police?" Or is it that the group noun "the police" always plural? Tack!! :)


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

They would both be the same. :) The police as a collective is called ’polisen’ and one single officer would also be ’polisen’. You could also make the latter plural and say ’poliserna’ if you’re talking about many police officers but not the police as a collective.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shortninja66

can't you just say the swedish word for "officer" after polisen when talking about a singular one?


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

Right, but the typical Swedish word for "officer" is polis. So to a Swede, "police officer" sounds like "police police". :p

We do have the word officer as well, but it means military command rather than police officer.


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

So is there a way to say a singular police officer without having any confusion from the start?


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

Sure, there are a few - polisman is a police officer, and you could also use poliskvinna since it's not the 19th century any longer. For a gender-neutral option, there's (polis)konstapel, but it'll make you sound like you're very out-of-date. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Larian7

Isn't "police" singular and so it must be "where IS the police"? And even if "polisen" is plural, then it has to be a plural in English like "police officers" "policemen"...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardWal211702

If you mean in English, I think this is a UK/US difference. Groups of people such as football teams are generally plural in UK English and singular in US. Now that I try to think of an example, every US sports team that comes to mind is called The somethings... but for international teams in Britain they would say "England are trailing by two goals" while Americans would say "England is down by two". I think!


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

Please refer to Lundgren's answer above.

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