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Need Help Understanding Basic Stuff

I feel like if I understand the following, I will be able to learn it better...

Are these the only words for turtle, for example, which will have the ending making it "the turtle" or "the turtles"?

  • Sköldpadda (turtle)
  • Sköldpaddan (the turtle)
  • Sköldpaddorna (the turtles)

Is it ONLY "the noun" words that end with -et or -en or -an? So I will NEVER see any of those in a "the nounS" word?

For "the nounS" words, will they always end in -na if regular? So it will be a "the noun" word plus an -na if it is regular? I know ett-words like hus end in -en in the plural.

I REALLY want to get solid on these before moving on. I've gotten to the first checkpoint 3 days after ACTUALLY learning the language (not just testing to see if I like it) but I feel like I need to practice them a lot more!

Definitely not as easy as Dutch where I could see the word once and remember it. >:(

January 15, 2015



I'm not sure that I understand your question. You want to make sure how the definite endings work?

This is the basic pattern, if you scale away some exceptions:

Singular indefinite - Sing. definite - Plural indef. - Plural def.

en X - Xen - X(a/e)r - X(a/e)rna
en XV - XVn - X(a/o)r - X(a/o)rna
ett X - Xet - X - Xen
ett XV - XVt - XVn - XVna


Am I answering your question with any of this? :)


Is X a string of letters where the last letter is a consonant :)?


X = consonant and V = vowels I believe?


Um.. X was just supposed to be a stand-in for any word. Maybe I made it confusing by adding the V. I guess X=word ending in a consonant and XV=word ending in a vowel then :)


Personally I love explanations like this, but I fear that some people might find them a bit abstract :).


Sorry haha, my question I guess is confusing. Are those all the possible combinations of endings?

And does it usually take people a couple weeks to get it down? Should I try actually MEMORIZING the rules, even though that might be bad for speaking speed? :/


Those are the standard endings, that is the most common ones. There are always some exceptions or subsets of rules. I can't really say how long it takes to memorize them. Seeing as it's only 3 patterns that work similarly, I'd assume it'd be worthwhile memorizing them. I'm not sure I understand why it would hurt your speed to know grammar?


I don't think you should memorize it. For some words you have to learn the plural explicitly anyway and people will understand you even if you make mistakes.

Maybe you learn the following rules (very few exceptions):
1. en-word that ends with an a -> remove a and add -or (en flicka - flera flickor)
2. ett-word that ends with a consonant -> plural = singular (ett hus - flera hus)
3. ett-word that ends with a vowel that is not stressed -> add -n (ett märke -flera märken)


Also, to just say "turtles" instead of "the turtles", so I drop the -na from that word? So sköldpaddorna would become sköldpaddor?

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