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  5. "Var är saxen?"

"Var är saxen?"

Translation:Where are the scissors?

March 30, 2015



Question: Is scissors always plural in Swedish as it is in English?


No. Sax is singular in Swedish. The plural "saxar" refers to multiple pairs of scissors.


What's more, sax is an en-word, so saxen is the definite singular form. There is a translation that sort-of transforms it into singular in English: "where is the pair of scissors" (where saxen stands in for the entire phrase the pair of scissors: what an economical language Swedish often is!) -- not that we'd typically say it that way in English.


That's what threw me. I was taking sax for an ett word and saxen for a definite plural. Thanks for the info


this one is so easy to remember because the x looks like en sax (:


can someone please let me know, is Sax and en word? if yes, saxen shouldnt be the scissor, and saxerna something like the scissors?


Scissors is always plural. I guess it has something to do with the blades and you need (at least) two to be able to cut. In Swedish it is
en sax - saxen
flera saxar - saxarna


As a little FYI to our learners, "saxarna" can also mean "the Saxons". :p


Hehe, I only just wanted to point out that there is a federal state in Germany called "Sachsen" (after the tribe), that is pronounced very similarly, so my first thought was "in eastern Germany" :)


And what about "the saxes" (as in 'saxophones')?


The saxophone is named after its inventor, the Belgian Adolphe Sax.


Well, I knew that ;-) but I was wondering if the Swedes also use 'sax' as an abbreviation for 'saxofon'.


Ok helen, so we never say where IS the scissor, in English. Tack, snälla!


I'm a native speaker of English and I say "where is the scissors" all the time.


My native language is English also. I have rarely heard that usage. I would say, and have almost always heard others say, "where are the scissors." I think it varies by region or by country. Katherine, are you in England?


I've never heard 'where are the scissors'. It's 'where is the scissors, or where's the scissors'. Scissors is like a hammer, screwdriver, etc. Can't see it as other than a single object. But I suppose there is no such thing as a scissor. Then there are pliers. Not much different in action than scissors, basically two parts with a hinge point. I've always heard 'where are the pliers'. Never 'where is the pliers'. Oh, well...


Clearly this has to do with dialect. In the US and Canada you would say "where are the scissors".


In the UK too.


US native here. We always say "Where are the scissors", however, in Pennsylvania Dutch country, some older folks do say "Where is the scissors". We always just assumed it was there bad English showing through (as with much of their speech), but now I'm wondering if they say that in German, too.


Nice question. Pennsylvania Dutch originated from from a German dialect (Deitsch, Palatine German). "Where is the pair of scissors?" in contemporary German is Wo ist die Schere?, and in contemporary Dutch (the language of the Netherlands) Waar is de schaar?. So in Swedish, German and Dutch scissors are countable tools. I found a link about Pennsylvania Dutch: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pennsylvania_Dutch


"var" sounds more like "vår" rather than "var" here. Anyone feels the same?

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