Translation:One is not allowed to touch pregnant women's bellies without asking first.
The main rule is to add
to indicate possession. This is done to both singular and plural nouns.
child's (singular) children's (plural) woman's (singular) women's (plural)
There is one exception. If the word already ends in "s," you just add the apostrophe. It doesn't matter if the noun is singular, plural, or a name.
cars' (plural) friends' (plural) crisis' (singular) crises' (plural) James' (name)
The idea is to avoid
at the end of a word.
Would "...utan att be först" also work? My understanding is that att fråga means to ask, whereas att be is more specifically to request. Is that correct?
Though, now that I think about it, even though it is a request, it would be pretty strange to say "...without requesting first" in English.
That is basically the reason it doesn't work in Swedish, either. It does sound less weird than "requesting" would, but it's still not completely natural even though it's not unidiomatic.
You could say utan att be om lov först, though. The phrase be om lov is a fixed way of asking for permission.
Thanks for that. I hear from the nurses in the family that 'belly' is more widely used than I had believed. I think my query on that topic was not justified. On the subject of the best translation, I believe that the singular offers the best option: 'You should never touch a pregnant woman on her belly without asking her first.'
I apologize if you just made a typo, but...
Your sentence would have to say "...a pregnant woman's stomach..." (which is the most natural way to say it for me).
You would have to say, "...pregnant women's stomachs..."
Your sentence has multiple women sharing only one stomach, which is a strange picture. ;)
I think the idea is to avoid s's. We don't pronounce or write 2 separate s sounds for a possessive.
This applies to plural or singular words that end in the letter s.
(singular possessive) Man's Woman's Child's Marius' Jesus' Person's Prince's Princess'
(plural) Men's Women's Children's People's Princesses' Princes'