Swedish III Tutorial: Basic Phrases, Vocabulary and Grammar

Thanks to Krystallia for the mp3s! Don't forget to check out the Foreign Service Institute Swedish Course and Swedish Listening Resources, where you will find authentic and spontaneous Swedish recordings with transcripts and English translations.


41. Places

airport flygplats embassy ambassad port hamn
bakery bageri (n) factory fabrik prison fängelse (n)
bank bank farm bondgård restaurant restaurang
bar bar fountain fontän/brunn road/street gata
barn lada garage garage (n) school skola
barracks kasern hospital sjukhus (n) sidewalk trottoar
bench bänk hotel hotell (n) square torg (n)
bookstore bokhandel house hus (n) stable stall (n)
bridge bro hut hydda stadium stadion
building byggnad inn värdshus (n) store affär
castle slott (n) library bibliotek (n) suburb förort
cathedral katedral market marknad theater teater
cemetery kyrkogård monument monument tower torn (n)
church kyrka museum museum town stad
cinema biograf palace palats (n) town hall rådhus (n)
consulate konsulat (n) path stig train station järnvägsstation
corner hörn (n) pharmacy apotek (n) university universitet (n)
courtyard gård police station polisstation village by

42. Transportation

airplane flygplan
bicycle cykel
boat båt
bus buss
car bil
moped moped
motorcycle motorcykel
ship skepp (n)
streetcar spårvagn
train tåg (n)
truck lastbil

43. Adjectives

Adjectives must agree in gender and number with the nouns they describe. In Swedish, adjectives are placed directly before the noun, as in English. There are two types of adjectives: strong and weak. Strong adjectives are used after the indefinite article and the words någon (a, some, any), ingen (no), en annan (another), vilken (what a), and all (all); as well as after the verbs to be and to become (vara and bli). Weak adjectives are used with the definite article, demonstratives, possessive adjectives or a possessive noun.

 

Strong (Indefinite): The basic rule for strong adjectives is to add -t for neuter nouns and -a for plural nouns. There is no ending for adjectives that modify common nouns.

 
common
neuter
plural
basic rule en fin bil
a beautiful car
ett fint hus
a beautiful house
fina bilar
beautiful cars
ending in vowel + d god gott goda
ending in consonant + d ond ont onda
ending long vowel blå blått blåa
ending in -er or -el vacker vackert vackra
ending in -en egen eget egna
gammal is irregular gammal gammalt gamla
liten is irregular liten litet små

 

Weak (Definite): The basic rule for weak adjectives is to add -a for all nouns. Note that the noun has the definite article attached to the end and the words den, det or de preceding the adjective. The adjective liten is completely irregular in the singular and plural. With adjectives follow possessives or demonstratives, the definite article is not attached to the end of the noun.

 
common
neuter
plural
basic rule den fina bilen
the beautiful car
det fina huset
the beautiful house
de fina bilarna
the beautiful cars
liten is irregular den lilla bilen
the small car
det lilla huset
the small house
de små bilarna
the small cars

 

Some common adjectives cannot be declined and they remain the same in all forms: bra (good), extra (extra), gratis (free).


44. Comparative & Superlative

Forming the comparative and superlative of adjectives in Swedish is very similar to English. Most adjectives add -are to the adjective for the comparative and -ast(e) for the superlative. Some adjectives add nothing to the adjective, but use mer or mest (more or most) before the adjective.

 
comparative
superlative
strong adjectives -are -ast
weak adjectives -are -aste
many syllables mer mest

Irregular Comparative and Superlative Forms

good - better - best god / bra bättre bäst
good - better - best (food) god godare godast
bad - worse - worst dålig värre värst
bad - less good - least good dålig sämre sämst
few - fewer färre  
small - smaller - smallest liten mindre minst
many - more - most många fler flest
much - more - most mycket mer mest
old - older - oldest gammal äldre äldst

Godare and godast usually only refer to food. Fler / flest are used with count nouns, while mer / mest are used with non-count nouns.

Comparing two or more adjectives: To express egality (as... as), use så...som. To express superiority (-er or more... than), use -are or mer and än (than.) To express the superlative (-est or the most), use -ast or mest.


45. House & Furniture

 

alarm clock väckarklocka desk bord (n) refrigerator kylskåp (n)
armchair länstol door dörr roof tak (n)
attic vindsvåning doorbell ringklocka room rum (n)
balcony balkong drawer låda rug matta
basement källare fence staket (n) sheet lakan (n)
basket korg fireplace eldstad shelf hylla
bathroom badrum floor golv (n) shower dusch
bathtub bad floor / storey våning sink diskbänk
bed säng furniture möbler (pl.) sofa soffa
bedroom sovrum (n) garden trädgård stairs trappa
blanket filt ground floor botten våning stove spis
blinds rullgardin house hus (n) table bord (n)
bookcase bokhylla iron (flat) strykjärn (n) tap (faucet) kran
box kista key nyckel telephone telefon
broom kvast kitchen kök (n) television television
carpet matta lamp lampa toaster brödrost
ceiling tak (n) lawn gräsmatta toilet (WC) toalett
chair stol light bulb glödlampa towel handduk
chimney skorsten lock lås (n) vacuum cleaner dammsugare
clock klocka mattress madrass vase vas
closet garderob mirror spegel wall mur
computer dator oven ugn wall (room) vägg
corner hörn (n) pantry skafferi (n) window fönster (n)
cupboard skåp (n) picture tavla yard gård
curtain gardin pillow huvudkudde    
cushion kudde pipe (water) rör (n)    

46. Clothing

 

apron förkläde (n) glasses glasögon shorts shorts
bathrobe badkappa, badrock glove handske silk silke (n)
belt skärp (n) handbag handväska skirt kjol
blouse blus handkerchief näsduk sleeve ärm
boot känga hat hatt slippers toffel, tofflor
bra behå jacket jacka soap tvål
bracelet armband (n) necklace halsband (n) sock strumpa
brush hårborste needle nål stocking nylonstrumpa
buckle spänne (n) nightgown nattlinne (n) suit kostym
button knapp overcoat överrock sunglasses solglasögon
cap mössa pants byxor suspenders hängslen
clothes kläder pin knappnål sweater tröja
coat jacka pocket ficka swimsuit badkläder
collar krage purse börs thread tråd
comb kam raincoat regnrock tie slips
contact lens kontaktlins ring ring T-shirt T-shirt
cotton bomull scarf scarf / halsduk umbrella paraply
dress klänning shirt skjorta waistcoat väst
earrings örhängen shoe sko watch klocka
fashion mode shoelaces skosnören wool ull

47. Future Tense

One way to form the future tense in Swedish is by using the auxiliary verb ska before an infinitive. This implies intention and the involvement of someone's will or wish. As an alternative, you can use tänker before an infinitive, as long as it is the subject's wish and not someone else's.

Du ska tala svenska. You are going to speak Swedish.
Jag ska resa till Amerika i höst. I'm going to America in the fall.
Vi tänker flyga hem. We're going to fly home.

Another way is to use kommer att before an infinitive. This does not imply intention or will, as it's more of a prediction or assumption about the future.

Du kommer att tala svenska. You are going to speak Swedish.
Du kommer att tycka om min vän. You will like my friend.
Alla kommer att vara här klockan 8. Everybody will be here at 8 o'clock.


48. Sports

badminton badminton rugby rugby
baseball baseball sailing segling
basketball basket skiing skidsport
bowling bowling soccer fotboll
boxing boxning surfing surfing
cycling cykelsport swimming simning
golf golf table tennis bordtennis
hockey hockey tennis tennis
ice-skating konståkning volleyball volleyboll
jogging joggning wrestling brottning

49. Nature

air luft grass gräs (n) root rot
bank strand gulf vik rose ros
bay vik hail hagel (n) salt water saltvatten (n)
beach strand hay hö (n) sand sand
branch gren high tide flod sea hav (n)
bud knopp hill kulle shadow skugga
bush buske ice is sky himmel
cape kap island ö snow snö
cave grotta isthmus landtunga, näs soil mark
climate klimat jungle djungel south söder
cloud moln (n) lake sjö spring (water) källa
coast kust leaf blad star stjärna
comet komet light ljus (n) stem stam
constellation konstellation lightning blixt storm storm
country(side) land (n) lily lilja strait sund
current ström low tide ebb stream bäck
daffodil narcisser meadow äng sun sol
daisy tusensköna moon måne sunflower solros
darkness mörker (n) mountain berg (n) thaw töväder (n)
desert öken mountain range bergskedja thunder åska
dew dagg mud mudder (n) tornado tromb
dust damm (n) nature natur tree träd
earth jord north norr tulip tulpan
east öster peninsula halvö valley dal
farm lantbruk / farm plain slät view utsikt
field fält planet planet water vatten (n)
flower blomma plant växt waterfall vattenfall (n)
foam skum (n) pond damm (n) wave bölja
fog dimma rain regn (n) weather väder (n)
forest skog rainbow regnbåge west väster
fresh water sötvatten (n) river flod wind vind
frost frost rock klippa world värld

50. Parts of the Body

 

ankle fotled finger finger (n) nail nagel
arm arm fist knytnäve neck hals
artery pulsåder flesh kött (n) nerve nerv
back rygg foot fot nose näsa
beard skägg (n) forehead panna pain smärta
belly buk gum tandkött (n) pulse hjärtslag
bladder blåsa hair hår (n) rib revben (n)
blood blod (n) hand hand shin skenben
body kropp head huvud (n) shoulder skuldra
bone ben (n) health hälsa skeleton skelett
brain hjärna heart hjärta (n) skin skinn (n)
breast bröst heel häl skull skalle
breath ande, andedräkt hip höft sole fotsula
calf vad intestines inälvor (pl.) spine ryggrad
cheek kind jaw käke stomach mage
chest bröst (n) kidney njure temple tinning
chin haka knee knä (n) thigh lår (n)
complexion hy leg ben (n) throat strupe
ear öra (n) lip läpp thumb tumme
elbow armbåge liver lever toe
eye öga (n) lung lunga tongue tunga
eyebrow ögonbryn (n) moustache mustasch tooth tand
eyelid ögonlock (n) mouth mun vein åder
face ansikte (n) muscle muskel waist midja
        wrist handled

51. Relative Pronouns

The relative pronoun som can be translated at that, which, whom, or who and it can act as a subject or as a complement. Där (where, in which) and när (when) can also be used as relative pronouns for location and time.

Stan, som ligger där borta, är Skövde. The city that is over there is Skovde.
Flickan, som fyller 17 år, är min syster. The girl who is going to be 17 is my sister.
Restaurangen, som du tycker om, ligger i Gamla Stan. The restaurant which you like is in Gamla Stan.


52. Animals & Insects

animal djur (n) giraffe giraff pig svin (n)
ant myra goat get pigeon duva
badger grävling goose gås pike gädda
bat fladdermus gorilla gorilla rabbit kanin
beak näbb grasshopper gräshoppa raccoon tvättbjörn
bear björn hamster hamster rat råtta
bee bi (n) hare hare rooster tupp
beetle skalbagge hedgehog igelkott salmon lax
bird fågel hen höna scale fjäll (n)
blackbird koltrast heron häger scorpion skorpion
bull tjur herring sill sea gull mås
butterfly fjäril hoof hov seahorse sjöhäst
calf kalv horn horn (n) seal säl
carp karp horse häst shark haj
cat katt hummingbird kolibrier sheep får
caterpillar larv iguana Ieguan shrimp räka
chicken kyckling insect insekt slug snigel
chimpanzee schimpans jellyfish manet snail snigel
claw klo kitten kattunge snake orm
cockroach kackerlacka ladybug nyckelpiga sole sjötunga
cod torsk lamb lamm (n) sparrow sparv
cow ko lark lärka spider spindel
crab krabba lion lejon (n) squirrel ekorre
crayfish kräfta lizard ödla starfish sjöstjärna
crocodile krokodil lobster (spiny) hummer stork stork
crow kråka louse lus swallow svala
deer hjort mackerel makrill swan svan
dog hund mole mullvad tadpole grodyngel
donkey åsna monkey apa tail svans
dragonfly trollslända mosquito mygga tiger tiger
duck anka moth nattfjäril toad padda
eagle örn mouse mus trout forell
eel ål mule mula tuna tonfisk
elephant elefant nightingale näktergal turkey kalkon
feather fjäder octopus bläckfisk turtle sköldpadda
fin fena ostrich struts wasp geting
fish fisk owl uggla weasel vessla
flea loppa ox oxe whale valfisk, val
fly fluga oyster ostron (n) wing vinge
fox räv parrot papegoja wolf varg
frog groda partridge rapphöna worm mask
fur päls paw tass zebra zebra
gill gäl penguin pingvin    

53. Adverbs

never aldrig possibly möjligen
always alltid often ofta
probably antagligen already redan
at least åtminstone surely säkert
only, merely bara seldom sällan
gladly, willingly gärna soon snart
not inte probably troligtvis
maybe, perhaps kanske usually vanligtvis
hardly knappast really, indeed verkligen

Adverbs are generally placed after the first verb in independent clauses with straight word order.

David röker ofta pipa. David often smokes a pipe.
Stockholm ligger inte i Amerika. Stockholm is not in America.
Talar Bo alltid långsamt? Does Bo always speak slowly?

In subordinate clauses, the adverb is placed before the conjugated verb.

Hon tror, att hon alltid har rätt. She thinks that she is always right.
Lars sade, att han inte tycker om att köra bil. Lars said that he doesn't like to drive.

Many adverbs in Swedish have two distinct forms: one to denote location and one to denote movement to or from a place. Location adverbs answer the question var? where? while movement adverbs answer the question vart? where to?

  Location Movement
in inne in
out ute ut
there framme fram
up uppe upp
down nere ner
here här hit
there där dit
away borta bort
(at) home hemma hem

Location adverbs are used with verbs of rest (vara, stå, ligga, sitta, stanna, finnas, bo, trivas) and movement adverbs are used with verbs of motion (gå, komma, fara, resa, åka, flytta, spring, köra, flyga).

Malin är här. Malin is here.
Malin kommer hit. Malin is coming here.

Mamma stannar hemma. Mother is staying home.
Mamma går hem. Mother is going home.


54. Present & Past Participles

The present participle in Swedish acts as an adjective. Present participles cannot be used to form the progressive tenses as in English, i.e. He is reading is translated as Han läser. Nor can present participles be used as gerunds (-ing form used as nouns in English). In this case, the infinitive is used: Do you like reading? Tycker du om att läsa?

The Swedish present participle is formed by adding -ande to most verbs, and -ende to verbs whose infinitives do not end in -a. Although the present participle acts as an adjective, it is not declined like other adjectives. It remains the same at all times.

en strålande dag
två strålande dagar
den strålande dagen
de strålande dagarna

The past participle in Swedish also acts as an adjective, either in the predicate of the sentence or as a modifying adjective before a noun. Unlike the present participle, the past participle does decline and agree with the noun in gender and number. Remember that the supine form is used in the perfect tenses in Swedish, whereas English uses the past participle. The past participle is used in the passive voice in Swedish, however.

Indefinite Forms: The en word forms vary according to the conjugation pattern of the verb. The ett word forms are similar to the regular adjective endings, and add -t or -tt. The plural forms add either -a or -e ( for -ar verbs). Predicate adjectives are always declined in the definite forms.

Definite Forms: The singular and plural forms of the definite past participles are the same as the plural indefinite forms: add -a to most verbs, and -e to -ar verbs.


55. Passive Voice

Bli + past participle
The passive voice is formed similar to the English passive, but with a different verb: conjugation of bli + past participle (which must agree with the subject). It is possible to use vara (be) instead of bli (become) in these sentences, but this describes a state or condition. Using bli describes an action or a transition from one state to another. Notice that av is the preposition used to mean by when expressing the agent.

Skjortan blir tvättad. The shirt was washed.
Kläderna blir tvättade.
The dresses were washed.
Huset blev sålt av Johan.
The house was sold by John.

Verb + s
Another way to form the passive voice is the -s form. The ending -s can be added to the infinitive, past tense or supine forms. In the present tense, -s is added to the infinitive of the -ar and long vowel verbs and to the stem of the -er and irregular verbs. Also, if the stem already ends in -s, an -e is inserted before the -s. This verb + s form commonly follows modal verbs.

Nyheterna läses varje timme. The news is read every hour.
Bordet köptes av min moster. The table was bought by my aunt.
Räkningen hade redan betalats. The bill had already been paid.
Barn ska ses men inte höras. The child will be seen but not heard.


56. Office & School Supplies

 

backpack ryggsäck lamp lampa
book bok laptop bärbar dator
briefcase portfölj map karta
cabinet kabinett microphone mikrofon
cable kabel monitor monitor
calculator miniräknare mouse mus
calendar kalender mousepad musmatta
chair stol newspaper dagstidning
chalk krita notebook anteckningsbok
computer dator novel roman
crayon färgkrita page sida
date datum (n) paper papper
desk bord paper clip gem
dictionary ordbok pen penna
disk (floppy) diskett pencil blyertspenna
document dokument periodical tidskrift
drawer låda photocopier kopieringsmaskin
envelope kuvert (n) printer skrivare
eraser gummi (n) ruler linjal
fax machine telefax scanner scanner / bildläsare
file fil scissors sax
globe jordglob sender sändare
glue limma software mjukvara
ink bläck (n) typewriter skrivmaskin
keyboard tangentbord wastebasket soptunna

57. Materials & Tools

 

alloy legering axe yxa
brass mässing board bräde (n)
brick mursten chisel mejsel
cement cement (n) cord rep
chalk krita file fil
clay lera gun gevär (n)
coal kol (n) hammer hammare
concrete betong hoe hacka
copper koppar hook (fishing) metkrok
cork kork line (fishing) metrev
glass glas (n) nail spik
gold guld (n) net nät (n)
iron järn (n) nut mutter
lead bly (n) pliers tång
leather läder (n) plow plog
lime kalk rod (fishing) mestpö (n)
marble marmor saw såg
mercury kvicksilver (n) scissors sax
metal metall screw skruv
rubber gummi (n) screwdriver skruvmejsel
silver silver (n) spring fjäder
steel stål (n) string snöre (n)
stone sten tool verktyg (n)
tar tjära tool box verktygslåda
tin tenn (n) wire tråd
wood trä (n) wrench skruvnyckel

58. Traveling & Airport

 

arrival ankomst platform plattform
baggage bagage (n) porter bärare
border gräns railroad car järnvägsvagn
coach, car vagn railway järnväg
compartment kupé return ticket biljett retur
connection förbindelse seat plats
customs tull sleeping car sovvagn
delay försening station station
departure avresa station master stationsinspektor
engine lokomotiv (n) stop halt
entrance ingång suitcase kappsäck
exit utgång ticket biljett
guard konduktör ticket office biljettkontor (n)
information bureau upplysningskontor (n) time table tidtabell
lavatory toalett trunk koffert
passenger passagerare visa visa
passport pass (n) waiting room väntsal

Swedish Provinces

Sweden is divided into 3 lands: Norrland, Svealand and Götaland; which are divided into 25 smaller landskap. These are not political divisions, but they are used in everyday language (such as in weather reports).

Norrland: Lappland, Norrbotten, Västerbotten, Ångermanland, Jämtland, Medelpad, Härjedalen, Hälsingland, Gästrikland

Svealand: Dalarna, Värmland, Västmanland, Närke, Uppland, Södermanland

Götaland: Dalsland, Bohuslän, Västergötland, Östergötland, Småland, Öland, Gotland, Halland, Skåne, Blekinge



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