Norwegian: Hva ble det for noe?

Jeg heter Anderson

New Member
Portuguese
Hallo

I'm watching the series "Borderliner", in one scene a man is riding a bicycle and his children are keeping time. When he finishes the round, he asks:

Hva ble det for noe? -6.48.

Could anyone explain this sentence?

After that, the cyclist's brother arrives and says:

Det høres helt riktig ut, det.

Could anyone explain this sentence? Why not use "jeg" at the beginning? And why the "det" after the comma?

Takk skal du ha
 
  • Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Hallo

    I'm watching the series "Borderliner", in one scene a man is riding a bicycle and his children are keeping time. When he finishes the round, he asks:

    Hva ble det for noe? -6.48.

    Could anyone explain this sentence?

    After that, the cyclist's brother arrives and says:

    Det høres helt riktig ut, det.

    Could anyone explain this sentence? Why not use "jeg" at the beginning? And why the "det" after the comma?

    Takk skal du ha
    I am guessing that he asks how long time took him to make the bicycle tour. He is probably trying to set a personal record of speed. His brother says "It sounds right/correct". This is idiomatic colloquial speech, and can't be explained by translating each word literally.
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    I am guessing that he asks how long time took him to make the bicycle tour. He is probably trying to set a personal record of speed. His brother says "It sounds right/correct". This is idiomatic colloquial speech, and can't be explained by translating each word literally.
    And the "det" at the end of the second sentence adds emphasis, but conveys no additional meaning.

    I don't know if it helps, but there is a similar construction in English: "It sounds right, that". In Norwegian it is more common.
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Ben Jamin has explained the meaning of both sentences, and Winenous has explained the use of "det" in the second sentence. I can just add that "for noe" in "Hva ble det for noe?" does not add anything to the meaning; "what was it [the time]?". We sometimes say "hva for noe" instead of only "hva".

    Why not use "jeg" at the beginning?
    "Jeg" does not really make sense here, unless you rewrite the sentence. "Det" refers back to the time recorded by the children, 6.48.
     

    myšlenka

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    I am of the opinion that truly non-informative uses of words must be demonstrated, that is, the null hypothesis should be that they carry a meaning at some level, even though it may be difficult to see it. Otherwise, we wouldn't use them. I generally agree with what has been said above; there is little semantic contribution in right-dislocated nouns (the technical term for the repetition of det) and in questions formulated with for noe, but there are clear pragmatic effects.

    To take "hva ble det for noe?" first: I tried to look up if someone had written about this "for noe"-part, but I wasn't able to find anything so this bit will be based on my own intuitions. I can't help but notice the parallelism between similar questions such as:
    1a) Hva er det for noe?
    1b) Hva er det for en bil?
    2a) Hvem er du for en?
    2b) Hvem er du?

    These questions cannot be answered in exactly the same ways. 2a) and 2b) are perhaps the most striking pair as the for-phrase is in one and not the other. 2b) can be answered by giving your name while 2a) cannot. My impression is that "for+generic noun" in this question type expresses that the speaker is asking about the very nature of the object or of the individual. The parallelism is not complete as I don't think it is possible to say "hvem er du for en professor?" (it sounds bad to me) but "hvem er du for en kar?" is fine. The pragmatic effect is perhaps not absolute, but the general idea remains the same: by using for noe/for en in questions like this, the speaker signals more strongly that s/he is really has no clue about the category of the object or person. Some kind of emphasis perhaps, but there are several different ways to mark emphasis in language so I find it a bit imprecise.

    As for "det høres helt riktig ut, det", I was able to find an article by Borthen&Karagjosova 2021: Pronominal right-dislocation in Norwegian. I skimmed through it and it seems that the construction is syntactically constrained (indirect objects are excluded) as well as being constrained by the surrounding discourse (the right-dislocated pronoun has to be a topic). The pragmatic effects range from "emphasis" to "mitigation" of the speaker's attitude to the content of the sentence and it can also have an effect on reference. A particularly telling example for this last point is shown below. In 3), den refers to the actual viper in the context whereas in 4), den refers to the species.

    3A: Det der er en hoggorm.
    3B: Nei. Den har et siksakband over ryggen.

    4A: Det der er en hoggorm.
    4B: Nei. Den har et siksakband over ryggen, den.

    Anyway, to sum up, if I have understood things correctly, Borthen&Karagjosova would analyse "det høres helt riktig ut, det" as a type of "emphasis". Not of the pronoun and its reference in itself, but more of the speaker's wish to draw the attention to the fact that there are other things that don't sound correct.

    Opaque? Oh yes! :eek:

    I suggest learning by doing :)
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    Just a small point:

    Takk alle sammen for hjelpen. Jeg lærte mye av deg og jeg vet at jeg kommer til å lære enda mer i fremtiden.
    I think you want "jeg lærte mye av dere (you plural)" when you've just said "Takk alle sammen". You might be referring to Raumar when you say "deg", in which case it's correct, but it seems a bit strange coming straight after "alle sammen".
     

    Jeg heter Anderson

    New Member
    Portuguese
    Just a small point:


    I think you want "jeg lærte mye av dere (you plural)" when you've just said "Takk alle sammen". You might be referring to Raumar when you say "deg", in which case it's correct, but it seems a bit strange coming straight after "alle sammen".
    Thank you very much for the observation, I tried to write in Norwegian just to see if it would come out correct, so thank you very much for the help.
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    The difference between "du" and "dere" is often a problem for speakers of English, because we just say "you" for both words (although some dialects use "thou" for you singular). But Portuguese, as far as I know, has "tu/você" for "du" and "vocês" for "dere". Anyway, keep trying to write in Norwegian, I'm sure you will always get help here! :)
     
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