Translation:If grandmother came home, grandfather would be happy.
The structure of the sentence is
[SUBCLAUSE] skulle farfar bli glad.
In the main clause, the verb is in the second place – the subclause takes up the first position.
In main clauses (except questions), the verb is in second place, but in subclauses, the subject goes before the verb, so in the subclause, we have Om farmor kom hem – subject before verb.
Native English speaker here whose grammar lessons were so long ago I can't remember much of it... what makes "Grandmother came home" the subclause and not the main clause ? Just the word "if" ?
The main clause can stand on its own, while a subclause is dependent on the main clause.
So in this specific case, we have:
- "If grandmother came home" - can't stand on its own, definitely a subclause
- "grandfather would be happy" - would work perfectly fine as a sentence on its own
Note that it's enough that it can stand on its own grammatically - in this example, for instance, it does require more context to make sense in the scope of a conversation. :)
So it is the "if" that signifies the clause ? "Grandmother came home" stands on its own perfectly well.
In this case, yes, that's exactly it. (And, indeed, most of the time.)
Is there a reason that adding "then" into this sentence makes it incorrect?
"if grandmother came home then grandfather would be happy"
Not really, I would accept that. Do note, though, that the "then" has a direct equivalent in så in Swedish.
i wrote "comes" instead of "came" and got marked wrong.
can someone remind me the past, present and future tenses of the verb "come" please? i seem to have misunderstood it. thanks.
Sure, have a look e.g. here for the full table: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/komma#Conjugation
- kommer is the present
- kom is the past
Swedish doesn't have a future conjugation pattern - we use kommer att [infinitive] or ska [infinitive] instead. The infinitive here is komma.
Please accept "glad" as a translation of "glad" alongside "happy". I'm a native English-speaker and would use the word "glad" this way.