"Männen läser böckerna."

Translation:The men are reading the books.

January 19, 2015

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why is not something like "männa" ?


The plural definite ending is -en if the word ends on a consonant in the singular (bord → borden; män → männen), otherwise it’s -a (äpplen → äpplena; pianon → pianona)


Hi. I didn't understand definite plurals before I read your comment and now I'm more confused.

You said that if the word ends in a consonant in the singular, the definite plural ending is -en. However, in the very examples you provided, both äpplen and pianon end in consonants yet their definite plurals are not äpplenen and pianonen as you seem claim they would be. Maybe I'm missing something.

Could you please help me understand why the definite plural of man is männen?

Why isn't the definite plural of bord either borderna or bordarna?


No, you misunderstood.

Äpple and piano both end in a vowel, therefore they get an -n in the plural (äpplen) and an additional -a in the plural definite (äpplena). Bord ends on a consonant, so it stays the same in the plural (bord) and then gets -en in the definite (borden).

  • bord → bordet → bord → borden
  • äpple → äpplet → äpplen → äpplena

Regarding männen, please read this post, and get back to me if there is any more confusion: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/5886811


After reading a few other comments, your comment and reading the notes again, I now understand how to arrive at the definite plural form of "ett" words (like äpple and bord).

Now, I'd like to know about männen. I understand that, for historical reasons, the män is the irregular plural of man. What I'm having trouble with now is arriving at the definite plural of man. Because man is a common (en) noun, I would expect the definite plural to be something like männa. I would expect it to be männen only if it was a neuter (ett) word, but it isn't. So how is this resolved?

Thank you for your time, by the way. :)


For these irregular nouns that don’t end in -er, the plural definite is also -en, even though they’re en-words. As for why, I’m not sure, just treat them as the irregulars they are.

  • man → mannen → män → männen
  • mus → musen → möss → mössen
  • lus → lusen → löss → lössen
  • gås  → gåsen → gäss → gässen


I don't if they'll be useful to a moderator, but you have 2 lingots from me.Thanks again. I can't seem to reply directly to your last comment.


I feel so stupid after reading this comments


Is it just me, or this sounds a lil' like some nice song lyrics!


Why is' the man reads the books' wrong


männen is 'the men', definite plural – 'the man' is mannen (definite singular).


Sorry if this is a bad question, but just checking, so the dots above a letter ( like the ä in "männen = the men" and the a in "mannen = the man") are not just for pronunciation purpose, but also help to distinguish the word also?


Yes. We see a and ä as totally different letters, they're like m and n – they may look similar, but they aren't the same at all.


tack så mycket!!


Is there a difference in the pronunciation? I get the difference in spelling and what they mean. I can usually figure it out by context, but not here. Is it just my untrained ear that can't hear the difference?


Yes, there's a difference in pronunciation. It's pretty clear to me so I think it's just a question of practice. You can listen to native speakers saying both words here: https://sv.forvo.com/search/mannen/ (the user Utanord doesn't sound like a native speaker to me though).


'Männen' sounds like it is pronnced with a quick 'a' and almost sounds like 'myannen' where as 'Mannen' is produced in the usual fashion. Am I hearing and interpreting it correctly?


The ä in "männen" (the men) is a short a sound, similar to the a in the words "cat" or "can."

The a in "mannen" (the man) is a taller sound, similar to the a in the word "father."

I think this gets confusing for English speakers because of the sounds and meanings. The Swedish word "män" (meaning men, plural) sounds like the English word "man" (singular).


Thanks thorr18 for the daily practicing tip. Didn't think to single out words like that to learn all their different articles and forms back to back. I already know this is going to be a helpful tactic in memorizing not just the words themselves, but in more depth, the structure of the language.


Im confused, boken is the book but böckerna is the books. Where does the umlaut and the c come from?


may be relics from old spellings? Just like the Spanish under new orthography


i wrote :read , when the swedish word was läser and it was cosidered as a mistake .i had to write : am reading.why?


what is an way i can remember the books


Practice daily with Duolingo?
en bok, boken, böcker, böckerna.
a book, the book, books, the books.


Thanks, I haven't been sure about that for a while!


I thought that "Mannen" was "the man"('cause that's what I always use) and on this, I got it wrong since I put " the man reads the books", is "Mannen" "the man" and "the men"?


Männen = The men
Mannen = The man


Well, Duo woman says "beckerna" but the correct is saying as they write, and the r is silent. https://pt.forvo.com/search/b%C3%B6ckerna/


Why the plural form of "bok" is so different from the original form?

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