1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swedish
  4. >
  5. "Han står och tittar på dig."

"Han står och tittar dig."

Translation:He is watching you.

February 7, 2015



Swedish can make the creepiest things sound cute.


How can "He is watching you?" be correct? Where does it say he is standing up?


står och [verb], as well as sitter, ligger, etc., are common ways of expressing a continuous action. In other words, they have the same function as "is watching" as opposed to "watches". While you could of course translate them literally in a real-world setting, it makes much more idiomatic sense not to.


Once again I am learning Swedish I will always try to literally translate everything .


And once again I'm telling you that this is not generally a good idea, and is likely to seriously inhibit your learning process. However, the literal translation is also accepted.


"Er ist dabei dich zu beobachten" or "He is currently watching you" would be other ways to say it, but im both cases dabei and currently can be removes without changing the meaning of the sentence.


oh no, not that creepy guy again! remember when he followed you home and was found standing behind the door later?


WTF???? We're getting some clues, people. The creepy guy is a Norwegian architect! We need to identify him and inform the police about this before it gets worse D:


Sounds like Pól in the Irish course. We suspect he put a woman in the refrigerator


Can you use other verbs for this "continous" form? For example

Han springer och tittar på dig.

(if of course he is actually running)


springer och is used in a similar construction, but it has a special meaning, or actually two:

  1. Either it means 'to start to do something' (sometimes with a negative nuance)
    E.g. springer och skvallrar – literally 'runs off to tell [on someone]' or springer och gömmer sig 'runs and hides' (or 'runs off to hide') (the latter one does not carry any negative value judgement per se)

  2. Or it means 'to do something very often' (probably more often than the speaker would like)
    E.g. Han springer på toa hela tiden 'He runs to the toilet all the time' e.g. he goes to the toilet more often than expected. Hon springer och skryter om … 'She runs around and boasts about …' e.g. she keeps boasting about something.

No actual running has to be involved for these sentences to be used!

Since these two already exist, in order to create the continuous form you were imagining, we must add omkring. Then it works: Han springer omkring och tänker på … 'He is running around thinking about …'


I suppose "he is staring..." should be accepted as a correct answer :)


stare is stirra in Swedish.


Why is it that “Han står och tittar på dig” means, “He is standing and looking AT you” (looking FOR you is incorrect), but “Boken ligger och väntar på dig” means, “The book is lying and waiting FOR you?”


Because prepositions often don't really translate across languages. At the end of the day you just need to memorize which preposition goes with which verb.


Thanks. I agree and appreciate your response. So then is suppose if one would want to say looking "for you," that is what he would say - "for dig"?


No, actually, that's not the case. It is: "att leta efter (dig)". If you were to say "leta för dig", it's more like "I'm looking for your sake" or "I'm looking for x thing for you".


Is just saying: ''han tittar på dig'' correct?


Sure, that's what we usually say. Han står och tittar på dig has a stronger continuous meaning than the English continuous in is watching, but with the present, just tittar, there's no continuous meaning.
So when you translate the English continuous into Swedish, you have to either do without that meaning, or exaggerate it. There's no 1=1 match.


So, am I correct in thinking the phrase directly translated "He stands and looks at you" is actually an idiom used in Swedish to say "He is watching you"? Is there a rule to anticipate these kinds of idioms, or do you just have to memorise them all? Thanks :)


Depends on how you define 'idiom'. I'd say it's a grammatical construction. We wrote about them here: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/sv/Continuous-Forms


Can it be Han står och tittar på det, meaning "he stands and watches it"?


Not as a translation of the example sentence, but it's a fine phrase, yes. :) It would be more idiomatic English in the continuous, though.


I probably should have clarified that I was writing what I heard. Aurally is there any difference between "dig" and "det"?


I'm assuming you mean in pronunciation. :)

Yes, there's a difference. det is pronounced like , while dig is pronounced like English "day". Well, sort of.


Dig is pronounced like English day would be, if the y on the end were pronounced like the y in yellow.


I found a problem with this, i wasnt given the words "standing" or "and" but it simply accepted "he is watching you."


Please refer to my answer to RyuKyoto above.


Why is the ‘ standing and’ part not included in the translation? In other sentences, it often is included. So: “He is standing and watching you.” Why is that not accepted?


I'm not entirely sure about this, since I wasn't around when the tree was first created, but I think the "and standing" phrasing (and its siblings) are included when the very first lessons are taught - and then that crutch is taken away to make it more realistic.


OK. It would be nice to know when “the rules” change like this. Otherwise, the inconsistency makes understanding usage more difficult.


I agree, but we're limited to what features Duolingo offers, and there is no such feature.


Why it is not IS STANDING and instead it is IS


The Swedish construction står och [verb] is a way of constructing a continuous. So it should usually really be translated into a standard continuous in English - i.e. "is watching" here.


In the UK there are very few who wouldn't understand "I am stood" in various contexts. E.g : Standing outside a GP surgery, a physically unwell elderly woman waits for her husband to park their car so he can attend to her usual need for assistance with walking in to the waiting room. He has taken longer than usual to park the car and she has grown tired and a little impatient. She is leaning on a metal handrail for support, a look of fatigue, pain and indignation is evident on her face, in her demeanour and through her body language. Upon seeing her husband she rather loudly and probably a little unnecessarily exclaims "I'm stood here waiting for you, and almost doubled over in pain. Where have you been?" This idiomatic use of "I'm stood" entails past and present. It would be understood by all native English language speakers and in use by many. Regional speech has been elevated by the BBC, and many presenters on TV now originate from areas where regional speech predominates. Regional speakers should NOT be looked upon as uneducated, and those attitudes are outdated. (Though these attitudes do sadly persist.)


In the United States as well. Very well stated and a delightful explanation. Have a lingot.


Why would 'He is stood watching you' not be accepted?


"He is standing" would be the correct English translation of "Han står," not "he is stood."


Hmm, I was under the impression this was no longer considered 'non-standard' English (I'm a native speaker and the passive form sounds more natural to my ear) but I suppose technically it's quite incorrect now I think about it! Good to know, thanks!


"He stood," or "He was standing." He is stood has conflicting tenses. (American here).


As Annikajns said, they consider it a passive form and if it's a passive form "he is stood" does not have conflicting tenses.


Could you give me an example sentence in english? I'm trying but only getting really weird ones in my head. This is the best I have so far: "The maid did not like the statue of the late lord of the manor, even though he is stood in a closed room under a sheet." Yeah, it's not great but I've never thought about using (basically past and present) together using passive to make it work. English is odd. Interesting, but odd.


"Yeah, it's not great but I've never thought about using (basically past and present) together using passive to make it work."

Isn't that what you do all the time? You combine a form of "to be" with the past participle of another verb to from a passive construction. "They are seen as a threat." "We are (being) followed."

The difference is that "to stand" normally can't have an object but that doesn't have to apply to the language in northern England. [As far as I know that is a requirement for the assumption to be true. The patient is not to be confused with an object, though, because it's a subject.]

I can't think of any better examples. Maybe: "I'm stood in the hall." - this does pose the problem that that person obviously has not been "placed" in the hall by anyone. I'm still convinced that the sentence has a different meaning than "I'm standing in the hall", in that "I'm stood" has more of a focus on the place you are at as opposed to what you are doing (standing). Interpreting it as a passive construction makes sense to me, but that doesn't have to be correct. I'd definitely say, though, that it is not a substandard form of a simple past or of a past progressive construction.


I can think of only one kind of example of "is stood", and it works only because it's in an idiom that requires an object:

"At the beginning of the play, the main character is stood up by his date, and waits alone in a cafe."

Having said that, I know in parts of the midwestern U.S. it is common to use past participles in ways that sound weird to me — e.g., "the car needs washed" or "the dog needs walked" — so I wouldn't be surprised if there's some dialect that uses "is stood" that way. I have a Gibraltarian friend who uses some construct very much like "is stood" in situations like having to wait for somebody, but I don't remember "stood" being the verb. I'll have to ask her.


In Australia, "He is stood" is not used, even in regional slang. I can't speak for elsewhere in the world :)


Afaik he is stood = he is made to stand/he is physically positioned by someone.


I would say it is a regional variation encountered in parts of England. It's not "the Queen's English" by a long shot, but it would be considered correct by those native speakers who use it. Unless you want to pretend to come from a particular region though, it wouldn't be the best form to use.


It's definitely common usage in some parts, the north of England in particular. Equally though, most other English speakers would think it makes you sound uneducated (which is a bit unfair on those who grow up in those parts, but there you go!) More discussion here for the curious: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=694065


I am from the north of England (although my parents aren't and I have spend most of my adult life living in other parts of the UK.) I asked a friend from Berkshire her opinion and she thought if you were talking about where he was, you would say 'he is stood' and if you were talking about what he was doing, you would say 'he is standing', which I thought was interesting.


So you also use "I have spend my life" in the north of England? That is really interesting!


What's he doing ? He's stood standing. He is there and he ain't moving.


I would also not use stood in this sense, either. Coming from the US.


In this context, the past particle version of stand does not work here, as "står" is in the present form. On top of that, "is stood" is rarely used, and considerably archaic (especially in terms of american English, which is what this course is targeted at).


That is a too literal translation

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