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  5. "Flickan visar sin bok."

"Flickan visar sin bok."

Translation:The girl shows her book.

January 7, 2015



Silly question, but because of the importance of reflexive pronouns in Swedish I'm curious, is 'sin' referring to her book as simple possession or is it her book she has written as her own?


Both are possible, just like in English.


How do know when to use sin then? I'm having trouble distinguishing when someone 'owns' something vs. when they possess something (therefore using hennes or hans).


You don't have to distinguish those, it doesn't matter. If the book is the girl's book, then you say hon visar sin bok. If it's some other female person's book, you say hon visar hennes bok.


So does sin serve the same purpose as the German sich?


No, that would be sig, the reflexive pronoun. Like sie spiegelt sich = hon speglar sig = 'she sees/looks at herself in a/the mirror'.
(also German sich can mean 'each other' but Swedish sig cannot: sie lieben sich = de älskar varandra = 'they love each other')

German doesn't have a reflexive possessive pronoun like sin so Hon visar sin bok is Sie zeigt ihr Buch even if it's her own book. And Han visar sin bok is Er zeigt sein Buch = 'He shows his book', so German is more like English here.


Does the "sin" in this sentence sound like "shin"?


The R+S combination sounds like SH.


Thank you both! I was puzzled by the same thing.


Can this mean the girl is showing off her book or is she just showing it for another purpose or can it be both?


I think it can be used for both, though for the first meaning a less ambiguous translation would be "Flickan visar upp sin bok".


Am i right that if you pluralise book you use an ö??


Yes, bok becomes böcker. You can see a full list of such nouns here.


Oh, the link doesn't open, could you relink, please?


Don’t think it opens on mobile for some reason. It’s in the FAQ in the forum. Here you go: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/5886811


Now I can open link on the Android, now it works, thank you!


Does this sentence mean that the girl is showing her book to someone else?


to who does "sin" refere to in this sentence "flickan visar henne sin bok"?


It refers back to the girl. Sin always points to a subject.


Why can't "sin" be "his" here? Like: the girl shows his book. Can't she show a book of a (male) friend of her?

[deactivated user]

    Sin refers back to the subject - and the subject is the girl in this case. That's the whole purpose of the possessive reflexive pronoun - to avoid the ambiguity.

    • Flickan visar sin bok. --- The girl shows her (own) book.

    • Flickan visar hennes bok. --- The girl shows her (some other female's) book.

    • Flickan visar hans bok. --- The girl shows his (some male's) book.

    • Pojken visar sin bok. --- The boy shows his (own) book.

    • Pojken visar hennes bok. --- The boy shows her (some female's) book.

    • Pojken visar hans bok. --- The boy shows his (some other male's) book.


    What if it is a book that was written by an automated computer program, and the girl was showing its book? Say, to demonstrate the advancement of technology to a crowd?

    Flikan visar dess bok? Or would Swedes say it another way, like "the girl shows the book that it wrote"?


    No, in that scenario "Flickan visar dess bok" would be a perfectly valid sentence.


    Thanks a lot! :-)


    It sounds like 'shin bok' :O


    An R and an S together, even if in different words, made a "sh" sound.


    So, wait. Does a gender word change the sin translation?

    ex. Flickan laser sin bok-> The girl reads her book.


    Yes, the gender of the thing owned matters. Flickan läser sin bok but Hon äter sitt äpple 'She is eating her apple' where äpple is an ett word so it takes sitt.


    Does the r+s combination always sound like sh, even when speaking carefully?


    Can visar also be used withthe meaning of showing someone how to do something? Like : jag visar dig rita ...or in some way like that?


    Can you use "hennes" in a sentence instead of "sin" anyway? Perhaps it's because at the time I didn't understand everything that was being said, but I remember my partner talking about my brother and saying "hennes bror blah blah blah".

    I could be likely that I wasn't the focus of the subject so "hennes" was used but do native speakers sometimes just say hennes instead of sin or is that a childish way of speaking? I know there's lazy ways of speaking in english that arent inherently incorrect but don't sound right to listen to.

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