1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swedish
  4. >
  5. Swedish word origins


Swedish word origins

Where can I find a good Swedish to English source, explanation of Swedish word origins.

Eg a simple example of component words

årstider seasons

år year tider times

But what is the origin of kvåll evening ?

I find understanding origins and related meanings helps me remember words.

February 3, 2015



One of the best sources of etymology I've found is Wiktionary (och på svenska). It's still a work in progress and sometimes you have to check in related languages, such as Norwegian, Danish, German, etc., but it's a great place to start.


Thanks, that is useful.


While not exactly what you are looking for, Svenska Akademien has since 1786 been working on a complete etymological dictionary of every word in the Swedish language. They have just finished T. http://g3.spraakdata.gu.se/saob/ (WARNING: Contains historical usage and variants of words that are not used in modern Swedish. Even the explanations are sometimes in a very archaic language.)


thanks I will explore it


According to Svensk ordbok (availiable as a search field at http://litteraturbanken.se/) kväll has been a Swedish word since the 13th century and is of germanic but otherwise unknown origin.


¨sedan slutet av 1200 talet¨ reading the Swedish and remembering it in order to put it in a translator will push me along, a pity the text/explanation can not be copied, a great source


this is proving useful, I think I am understanding a lot of it eg the origin of - bröllop - wedding - It appears around 1200 and appears to derive from - "brudlop" which itself derives from "brod och löpa - explanation - efter festligheterna i samband med brudfärden till brudgummens gård - after the festivities associated with bridal journey to the groom's farm (Google translation, so it might be a bit inaccurate)

I understand it as - bride (brud) and (och) runs (löpa)

It interesting to compare the sound of the words with the English expression - the bride elopes/eloped


I have searched online but the main things I have found are about Swedish loan words in English.


ögonblick moment

ögon eyes blick gaze


a bit harder to use but useful, thanks

Learn Swedish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.