Swedish: cracking a simple sentence

Discussion in 'Nordic Languages' started by Sorror, Jan 29, 2014.

  1. Sorror Member


    I have some troubles seeing how one particular sentence makes sense grammatically (supposedly it does). It's from a lesson on LingQ, and it's the bolded one:

    I would understand if it was "Det ändrar det blåa ordet färg" or if it was an imperative (Då ändra det blåa ordet färg). But with "" at the beginning and the verb form "ändrar" I have no idea how should I translate this sentence. It's missing the subject, isn't it? Does "Då" have also some other meaning beside "then, at that time"? What's going on here?
  2. Segorian Senior Member

    Icelandic & Swedish
    The meaning is: "Then the blue word changes colour."

    Grammatical rule: The word order changes following ​, with the verb moving in front of the subject. Example: Ingenting hände ända tills han tryckte på knappen. Då startade maskinen. = "Nothing happened until he pushed the button. Then the machine started up." Regular word order is not possible in this construction. The sentences *Då det blåa ordet ändrar färg and *Då maskinen startade are ungrammatical.
  3. Sorror Member

    Oohh, how silly am I... My confusion came from thinking that "blåa ordet" is plural, and "det" there is just a prepositional pronoun. But not only the plural would be "ord", the prepositional pronoun would be "de"! No wonder I got lost with the translation.

    Excellent explanation, Segorian. Thank you!

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