"Kan jag få låna er våg?"

Translation:May I borrow your scale?

January 22, 2015

This discussion is locked.


So a summary about weight-related words:
En vikt: weight (en tyngd: gravity, weight)
Viktig: important
Att väga: weigh ( the present tense: väger)
En våg: scale (the instrument that measures weight)

Not to be confused with:
En vägg: wall
En väg: road, way


Note that en våg can also mean a wave. They have different plurals, though.

  • en våg, -en; vågor, -na = wave
  • en våg, -en; vågar, -na = scales


Why do you need the ´få´here? Wouldn´t it mean the same thing just to say "Kan jag låna er våg?"


I think saying "Kan jag" and "Kan jag få" is the difference between saying "can I" and "may I" in english.


That's a good explanation!


So why not får jag låna?


That works too, it's just a little less polite than Kan jag få…? More on the level of Can I …?


I think for Kan jag få låna. . . it's easy to remember the word order if you think of it as May I be permitted to borrow. . ., which is slightly archaic in English but still used.


Thank you--that is very helpful!


To make it easier for myself, I will translate "Kan jag få låna er våg" into "Can I be allowed to borrow your scale?"

While "Kan jag låna er våg" is simply "Can I borrow your scale?"

  • 2613

This would normally be plurailsed when refering to weighing apparatus (at least in British usage) as in: 'May I borrow your scales'.


As a speaker of U.S. English, I would say "May I borrow your scales" only if I were referring to the kind of balance-pan device used in a chem lab, etc. Otherwise, referring for example to a bathroom weighing device, it would be "May I borrow your scale".


In the UK do you step on the bathroom scales? Definitely not in the US...


Yes. In the UK we definitely say scales in that context. When referring to a weighing device it's always scales not scale


In the UK you always say scales in the plural because it comes from the old apparatus that had two bowls (see German Schale, or Swedish for that matter skål --> scale) which were balanced.


Maybe regionally, but not true in all the US. I grew up in Idaho, and it was quite common to use scale and scales interchangeably.


Perhaps that varies by region. Apparently e.g. Target use that term.


Really? Are you sure Target is referring to just one device and not a category? To me it would sound really weird to say "We need to buy bathroom scales."


Yeah, good point. I'd check but they keep redirecting me to their non-US site, and I'm not connected to a VPN at the moment. So you're probably right. :)


Not to belabor the point but if you go on Target's website you get scale, not scales (https://intl.target.com/s?searchTerm=bathroom+scales).


Sorry, hadn't seen your reply.


I can see a surfer maybe saying "Can I borrow your wave?"... maybe.

But it was not accepted! :P


That's what I thought, too ... and I wondered what it was doing in the science section.


Haha, I love how both of you have epic landscape profile photos to go with these comments.


Because mine is lying to me


As a native English speaker, I totally agree with dptole and kdb119, that bathroom/ kitchen scales are always in the plural as a weighing device. Sounds very weird in singular, like something in technical drawing.


Me too... I wrote weighing scales


Me too... I wrote weighing scales which is correct, standard British. I thought of the kitchen scales.


Is it then that a skal is for measuring magnitude or something abstract - like a likert scale, whereas a vag (sorry, can't do special characters) is for a piece of equipment that is used for measuring the weight of something?


Yes, en våg is a physical thing, a piece of equipment. en skala is an array of values, like in e.g. 'on a scale from 1 to 3' på en skala från 1 till 3skalan is the array of values 1, 2, 3, and the values between them.


Okej! Tack sa mycket :)


More or less polite than <skulle jag kunna låna er våg>.


Skulle jag kunna få låna er våg is more polite than kan jag få låna er våg, which in turn is more polite than får jag låna er våg.


I really struggle with the fact that can I have a loan of is not an acceptable translation kan jag få låna. Can I have a loan of is actually what I would say as a native English speaker and seems close to the Swedish .


Can I have a loan of... is VERY colloquial British only for use close friends etc and not the polite, respectful, standard style of Kan jag få låna.


Not where I come from . Can i have a loan of is considered perfectly normal and polite. You can add please if you want to be extra formal but it is not impolite not to use it.


I don't know why, but to me it sounds like she says "er" instead of "jag". Can someone confirm that?


The sound on jag is a bit murky. I don't hear it as er, but it is unclear.


My family in Gothenburg usually say something like 'kan jag be och få...' to mean 'can i please have...'

Is that also a common form?


It's ever so slightly oldfashioned, but it's a perfectly idiomatic, polite Swedish phrase. Do note that it's be att få even though be och få is a common colloquial missaying.


ok so få adds an additional level of politeness. by the way do we have something like " do you mind..." in swedish such as do you mind if i open the window.


Wouldn't this "scale" be a ruler?


en våg is just 'a scale' as in 'something that tells you how heavy things are'.
a ruler or a scale ruler (used for measuring length or drawing straight lines) is en linjal.


"kan/får jag lånar" is the same as "kan jag få låna"?


When ordering in a restaurant are the following OK? How else can you order politely?
1. Jag skulle vilja ha ...
2. Jag skulle gärna få ...
3. Jag skulle vilja få ...
[Edited per comment below]


The first one is great, the second and third very unidiomatic - though certainly not impolite.

Another common option is skulle jag kunna få...

Do note that it's vilja, though, not vilje.


Yes, like other native British speakers, I came to say I'm aggrieved by getting this 'wrong' for writing 'scales' in plural. You'd think this would have been checked easily enough.


May I borrow your copy of Vogue?

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