"To be or not to be."

Translation:Att vara eller inte vara.

February 22, 2015

This discussion is locked.


Det är frågan.


Translation: That is the question.


I don't quite understand why the att only comes before the first vara?


It's largely idiomatic. You could very well say att vara eller inte att vara (or att vara eller att inte vara). In the same way, the English sentence could have been to be or not be (or to be or to not be). But that's not how Hamlet is usually translated, nor how it was written. :)


got it, thanks :)


The bard would never have penned "to not be"!


Then should it not be accepted with two "att"s too?


Sure - added it now. :)


I thought this was a Swedish course, not a Danish course.



att vara eller att vara inte is what I answered. Is this following the old english style of the saying in putting inte before the second verb? As inte usually comes after the verb?


The rule is that inte normally goes after the verb in main clauses, but before it in subclauses. However, this rule only applies to the kind of verb that shows time, but att vara is in the infinitive so it doesn't apply here. In terms of word order, att vara behaves like a noun, so that inte typically wants to go before it. (Det är inte en bok 'It isn't a book') – inte goes after the verb, but before the noun.

Compare: I do not like books or I do not like to readnot is after the verb which shows time, do, but before the infinitive to read or the noun books.


In reading this first I still didn't quite understand but I think.. ""In terms of word order, att vara behaves like a noun"" is the best explanation to help me get it. Tack : )

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