Norwegian: Vil du skrive navnet ditt.

janesaddiction

New Member
Polish
I found this sentence in a book I use to learn Norwegian from:

Vil du skrive navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der.

It starts with "vil du" which is an inversion of "du vil". If so, shouldn't there be a question mark at the end?
Or am I missing some rule like "requests always start with a verb"?
 
  • mosletha

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Er, yes, you are correct, there normally ought to be a question mark there. However, this is a command, only masquerading as a request with its word order. I personally find it rude, and I think people should rather either use the imperative mood, like this:

    Skriv navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der.

    Or they should formulate a more proper request:

    Kan du skrive navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der?


    This middle ground is just very unpleasant to me.
     

    Grefsen

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Or they should formulate a more proper request:

    Kan du skrive navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der?


    This middle ground is just very unpleasant to me.
    Would you please explain why this example is a more proper request? Is it mainly because the sentence ends with a question mark?

    På forhand takk! :thumbsup:
     

    mosletha

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Hovedsaklig derfor, ja. Jeg foretrekker personlig også verbet 'å kunne' her. 'Å ville' kan tolkes på to veldig ulike måter: 1) å ønske å gjøre noe, og 2) å komme til å gjøre noe.
     

    willem81

    Senior Member
    Russian
    As I understood, that is not a mistake. The construction with 'vil du' can function as imperative.

    It can be compared with a similar structure in German I suppose: Wollen wir beginnen! (= Let's begin)
     

    Grefsen

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Hovedsaklig derfor, ja. Jeg foretrekker personlig også verbet 'å kunne' her. 'Å ville' kan tolkes på to veldig ulike måter: 1) å ønske å gjøre noe, og 2) å komme til å gjøre noe.
    Takk for forklaringen, mosletha. :thumbsup:

    Er, yes, you are correct, there normally ought to be a question mark there. However, this is a command, only masquerading as a request with its word order. I personally find it rude, and I think people should rather either use the imperative mood, like this:

    Skriv navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der.

    Or they should formulate a more proper request:

    Kan du skrive navnet ditt på disse sjekkene og på det papiret der?


    This middle ground is just very unpleasant to me.
    To avoid making the sentence sound rude, would another possible alternative be to start the sentence with either "Vær så snill" or "Vennligst"?
     
    Last edited:

    mosletha

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Sure, 'Vennligst skriv ...' is absolutely fine. I think that compared to most English speakers, we Norwegians simply don't say 'vær så snill' (please) very often. It's not rude to exclude it, but it is nice to include it.
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    These alternatives are often used in different contexts. "Vennligst skriv navnet ditt" is the most formal option, often used in written instructions (for example about how to fill in a form). If you are talking to somebody, "vennligst" will usually sound too formal. In that case, "Vil/kan/kunne du skrive navnet ditt?" is a better choice.

    I don't think "Vær så snill" fits into this context. It is informal, or even a bit childish, and it often means you are begging somebody about something.
     

    Grefsen

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Tusen takk for dine forklaringer mosletha og raumar! :thumbsup:
    I don't think "Vær så snill" fits into this context. It is informal, or even a bit childish, and it often means you are begging somebody about something.
    I've probably spent too much around young children when I've been in Norway. :eek:
     
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