Norwegian: det har jeg ingen peiling på

Discussion in 'Nordic Languages' started by StunningNorway, Jul 14, 2013.

  1. StunningNorway Member

    English - Australia

    I noticed this phrase when I was using a dictionary to look up something. The phrase is given, as an example of usage, for the word 'ingen'.

    I don't understand the word order. Why isn't the order, '....har jeg ingen peiling på det..'

    Tusen takk for hjelpen.
  2. JohanIII

    JohanIII Senior Member

    It's a full phrase / sentence and it is quite standard word order.
    Same word order as e.g Det kan jeg ikke gøre nå.
    Your word order would be used in Hvorfor har jeg ingen peiling på det?
    Better (and native) grammar help will arrive shortly, I'm sure.
  3. StunningNorway Member

    English - Australia
    Thank you, Johan III. I need all the help that I can get with word order!! :rolleyes:
  4. myšlenka Senior Member

    the short and simple answer to your question is that "har jeg ingen peiling på det?" would in fact be a yes/no-question in Norwegian because the inflected verb is the first word in the sentence.

    The longer answer is that Norwegian is a verb second language, which means that the inflected verb has to be the second constituent in a declarative main clause (unless you want to make a question like I explained above). The first constituent can be (almost) anything else (e.g. subject, object, adverb etc) so the sentence you came across can be phrased in many different ways, depending on information structure. If the subject isn't the first constituent, it immediately follows the inflected verb:

    1) [Jeg] har ingen peiling på det - first constituent is subject.
    2) [Det] har jeg ingen peiling på - complement of preposition has been fronted.
    3) [På det] har jeg ingen peiling - Prepositional phrase has been fronted.
    4) [Ingen peiling] har jeg på det - object has been fronted.

    Har jeg ingen peiling på det? - nothing has been fronted so this is a question.

    The two first ones are by far the most common ways to say this whereas the two last ones are in principle possible, but rare.
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2013
  5. StunningNorway Member

    English - Australia

    omfattende forklaring myslenka.....takk så mye

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