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  5. "He tells us nothing"

"He tells us nothing"

Translation:Han berättar inget för oss

January 5, 2015


[deactivated user]

    Why would "Han berättar oss inget" not be accepted?


    This verb needs a preposition with the indirect object.

    • Han berättar en historia 'He tells a story' historia is the direct object, no preposition needed.
    • Han berättar en historia för oss 'He tells us a story', oss is the indirect object, preposition needed.

    för is the 'audience preposition' in Swedish.
    And then it's word order, the direct object should come before the indirect object when the indirect object is governed by a preposition. If the indirect object is not governed by a preposition, it should be first:

    • Han ger oss blommor 'He gives us flowers'
    • Han ger blommor till oss 'He gives flowers to us'
      (with ger, you can say it both ways).

    [deactivated user]

      Du är en gud, Arnauti


      Thank you for the excellent explanation, which cleared things up for me. And when I looked closely at your two "flowers" examples, I realized that the Swedish rules for ordering direct/indirect objects with or without prepositions are exactly the same rules for ordering in English. That will help this anglophone keep things straight.


      What about "Han berättar oss ingenting"?


      Doesn't work. See Arnauti's answer here among the comments to understand why.


      "Han berättar oss ingenting"? Should be "Han berättar ingenting för oss."


      • Han säger inget till oss
      • Han berättar inget för oss
      why does säger not accept för and why does berättar not accept till?


      I'm afraid it's just the way things are.


      Why not ingenting instead of inget? I thought they had the same meaning


      That works too.


      I think ingenting is OK. This is what I hear people saying.

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