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  5. "The little boy"

"The little boy"

Translation:Den lille pojken

January 15, 2015



This is very confusing. Here you are saying "the" twice, the little the boy! But in "restaurangens personal" the equivalent translation "restaurangens personalen" is wrong because that would mean "the restaurant's the staff".

Why do we have a double "the" here for this sentence, but not elsewhere?

December 20, 2015


Late answer but this was a good question. As a general rule, Swedish has what is called double definiteness. Actually it could just as well be called triple, because the adjective also shows that the noun is definite:
'the red book' is den röda boken
The front article den, the ending on röd, and the ending on bok all show that the noun is definite.
After possessive pronouns and nouns in the genitive though, the noun isn't definite.
min bok 'my book'
hundens svans 'the dog's tail'
The possessive pronoun or noun in the genitive are by themselves enough to show that the noun is definite.

June 5, 2017


Is it only applicable if the noun is with an adjective?

March 11, 2019


Why is lille used here? I thought little was lite or litet?

January 15, 2015


Liten is an irregular adjective. See http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/liten#Declension for its declension.

January 15, 2015


Lille is the male form of little/small. Ex. "Den lille mannen."

July 24, 2018


Why is it not den lille pojke?

January 30, 2015


It's because pojke in definite form is pojken.

February 17, 2015


Is there any difference between lille and liten?

May 10, 2016


Not in meaning, but in usage. See the table here for the irregular adjective "liten": https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/liten#Swedish

May 10, 2016


why cant lille pojken be used, isnt pojken supposed to be the boy?

March 22, 2015


It is, but you have to use the definite article as well when you introduce an adjective. Another example:

  • the house = huset
  • the small house = det lilla huset
  • the yellow house = det gula huset
  • etc
March 22, 2015


i thought it should be lilla in definite form? why is it lille? is it just because it is an irregular adjective?

June 4, 2017


lille is an optional form that you can use only for masculine nouns. It's also correct to say den lilla pojken.

June 5, 2017


But isn't there no such thing as a masculine noun in Swedish? In some languages, boys and girls are neuter, not masculine or feminine, so how would you know which one "pojke" is? I only know that it's gendered.

December 6, 2017


As far as I understand a masculine noun in Swedish is a noun for a masculine person; all other en-nouns are just en-nouns. So you say "den lille pojken" and "den lilla flickan".

May 17, 2019


Shouldn't it be "den lilla pojken"?

September 5, 2018


Why not liten?

August 28, 2019


Liten is the singular form. When you use the definite article "den", you have to use the plural form.

August 28, 2019


You shall also check that it is lille when for masculine and lilla for feminine

February 23, 2015
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