"Hold her legs."
Translation:Håll i hennes ben.
There's a difference, but it's hard to describe.
håll på has two meanings depending on whether it's
a) a particle verb (stressed på), meaning 'be doing something'
b) verb + preposition, unstressed på, meaning holding (one's hand?) on (on top of, on the surface of) something
I don't think 'håll på hennes ben' sounds very reasonable, at least I find it hard to picture that situation. (it would have to be b) of course). 'Hold on her legs?'
The TTS is really stressing the i in the audio, like 'HållEEE hennes ben.'
But I'm guessing that typically one would put a bit more emphasis on Håll than i in the imperative, right?
Just to continue that thought, in English, typically the first time you'd command this, you'd say 'Hold onto her legs' with a little more weight on Hold or about equal to onto. But maybe if you had to ask again and you were slightly annoyed about it like a parent losing patience, you'd say 'Hold ONto her legs!' Would it possibly be about the same inflection in Swedish, 'Håll IIII hennes ben!'?
Without a context, I'd assume this to be a particle verb, so the particle should be stressed. The TTS does a great job here.
It's possible to say håll i where i would be a preposition and thus unstressed, but it's much harder to imagine a context for that. Or I'd much prefer a different construction in that case, like håll henne i benen.
I don't think I can deliver a comprehensive explanation of the difference in meaning between håll i (stressed particle) and håll i (unstressed preposition), at least not at the moment. It's very subtle. Anyway Swedish and English don't really work the same here.
Well, that's a good clarification! I'm glad Astrid is doing her job. Thanks for the super-fast response, too. The different behaviors of English and Swedish particles will take some getting used to ... but it's perhaps like the om stressed in tycker om, so maybe I should have guessed that.
The course doesn't really teach particle verbs all that well – this is probably the area where I'm least happy with how the course turned out.
For one thing the Duolingo system isn't really optimized for teaching units larger than a word, and for another it's often just hard to translate the difference. (this is one of the few things that will be easier to teach in the course for Russian speakers). But I hope you'll get a foundation from this course and be able to go on from there to learn the subtleties!
Though "håll i båda hennes ben" is semantically correct, it would literally mean "hold both her legs" and is thus not equal to the English sentence "hold her legs." If it is any consolation, both interpretations of "håll hennes ben" would be indistinguishable from each other without context.