"Min son går i sömnen varje natt."

Translation:My son walks in his sleep every night.

March 8, 2015

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I do not understand, why is this not translating into "walks in the sleep" (due to sömnen). And therefore why "in his sleep". Wouldn't that translate into "i sin sömn"?


Yes, but the set phrase ’walk in one’s sleep’ in Swedish is gå i sömnen (walk in the sleep). Swedish very often uses the definite form where English uses a possessive pronoun. See also this thread.


Swedish also often uses the definite form to express "belonging to the subject of the sentence" if it is unambiguous what is meant.

Jag tappade mobilen. - I dropped my phone.

Han hittar inte nycklarna. - He can't find his keys.

Here, for example, the son is extremely unlikely to walk in someone else's sleep. :D


Jag pratar i sömnen men inte varje natt och inte på svenska. Än. :)


Why not translating it correctly into English, e.g. "walks while sleeping"?


"Walks in his sleep" or "sleepwalks" IS correct English, while "walks while sleeping" is not idiomatic, at least for American English. See Lundgren8's comment above.

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