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  5. "Svårigheterna är många."

"Svårigheterna är många."

Translation:The difficulties are many.

February 27, 2015



I am not a native English speaker, but the structure of "The difficulties are many." sounds really really off to me. Perhaps "The difficulties are numerous." would be more appropriate? Even though the meaning might be slightly different? Like "We are having many difficulties which means the difficulties are numerous." Or is this structure used because it is more natural in Swedish?

Thank you :) You DL guys and gals are amazing, btw!


It's technically correct, but a more common word order would be "There are many difficulties." But I feel like the Swedish version of that would be more like "Det finns många svårigheter" or something.


This. Completely. The accepted answer is perfectly fine English, but this is the most natural way to say it.


Yeah, it's perfectly fine in English as the others have said. It's just uncommon colloquially. It's a structure one might see in formal writing or poetry, or perhaps a construction in a speech someone is giving or even in advertising language.

The possibilities are endless. :)


The possibilities are many :'D

Ok, doesn't really work but still...


'the struggle is real'


It sounds natural to me (although I am also not a native English speaker). Google has approx. 173 000 results for the phrase "the difficulties are many", so I think we can safely claim that it's commonly used by natives. :)


I am a native English speaker. This sentence is correct, but it does seem a bit odd.


I wrote "the difficulties are aplenty", and it was incorrect, does that have a different meaning?


To me this seems grammatically correct. However "plenty" and "aplenty" both mean that there is enough of something, which "many" does not necessarily mean. There could be many sandwiches, but not enough. However, if there are sandwiches aplenty, there is enough for everyone and perhaps more. So aplenty just conveys extra meaning that the Swedish sentence does not have.

Also, aplenty seems to have a generally positive connotation. So, if I saw it in the sentence above, it would seem to be used somewhat ironically.


oh, yeah, now that you mention it, aplenty does carry somewhat of a positive connotation...


To my ears " the difficulties are many" sounds a tad bit "old". It's correct nonetheless.


Also a native English speaker - it is more heard in an academic setting than anywhere else.


Another native English speaker and I agree that while this sentence is correct I would typically say "There are many difficulties" instead of phrasing it this way.


This predicative use of many is elevated style, which is why it sounds unusual to you. You would more likely find this in a book, rather than hear it said.


Perfectly normal in English (Though more common in archaic use.) Example of context of use: "In life, the difficulties are many; though worth overcoming."


It's completely fine and sounds good in English. It depends completely on your upbringing, what books you've read, etc. I didn't think twice about it sounding natural.


how about 'problems' instead for this?


problems is problem in Swedish, so it's not the best translation here. ett problem, problemet, plural problem, problemen.


Thanks! I was thinking academic article writing - where you would often(-ish) say this. This person's idea stinks -> "the problems are many" :-)


Problem works fine. problematisk is also a good word for these contexts. Idén är problematisk 'The idea is problematic' (yeah, you mean it stinks) :)


Cool! Not sure when if ever I'll give my first talk in Swedish, but it's handy to have available!


I would love to know the etymology of this word.


It goes back to an old Germanic root meaning 'difficult' or 'heavy'. (schwer in modern German for instance). Also most likely related to Latin serius meaning both 'serious' and 'heavy' too. -het is a common suffix for creating abstract nouns and -ig is a suffix often used to create adjectives. In German, the whole word is schwierigkeit so they have a very similar pattern.


"Schwierigkeit/Schwierigkeiten" an absolutely common German word, translation for difficulty/difficulties. Also as an adjective, e.g. This lesson is difficult = Diese Lektion ist schwierig (schwer)

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