tilhengere eller supportere?

serbianfan

Senior Member
British English
When I first went to Norway in 1968-70, I'm pretty sure that the usual word for 'supporters' (of a football club) was 'tilhengere'. Now if I google '(name of club)tilhengere', I find far fewer hits than for '(name of club)supportere'. Same in Danish: much more 'Brøndbysupportere' than 'Brøndbytilhængere'. Does my memory serve me right? Has the usual word for this and other sporting concepts changed so much in 50 years? Has there been a similar development in Danish and Swedish? (but maybe not in Icelandic?)
 
  • Svenke

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    It's very hard to answer such questions based on intuition, so I did some searches in a huge newspaper corpus.
    Supporter is more frequent than tilhenger (which is still used, though) in the sport context. Tilhenger is more commonly used about politics.

    tilhenger-supporter.png


    The graphs above from the National Library are also based on newspapers. It seems that supporter has been more common than tilhenger in such texts since sometime between 1985 and 1990. Brann is a fotball team from Bergen.

    The picture is different for the overall use of these words though (still newspapers). Note that tilhenger also refers to (car) trailers, but I think that meaning must be much less frequent than the people meaning.

    tilhenger-supporter.png
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    Thanks very much for your research, Svenke! So my memory did serve me right in this case. Now I know where to find trends in newspaper usage of other words. I wonder if spoken usage is different - do you think the average person in Bergen/Hordaland is more likely to ask someone: 'Er du Brann-tilhenger?' or 'Er du Brann-supporter?'

    What would be equally interesting, though presumably impossible to find, would be similar statistics for spoken Norwegian. When I lived in Østlandet in the 1980s, most people were still saying 'fem og tyve' in spite of the fact that 'tjuefem' had been 'official' and taught in schools since the 1950s. Maybe it's different in Hordaland in 2021?
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Regarding "tilhenger/supporter": One important factor may be the great interest in English football in Norway, with English football matches shown on Norwegian TV, and so on. This may have made English terminology more natural.

    Regarding the way of counting:
    most people were still saying 'fem og tyve' in spite of the fact that 'tjuefem' had been 'official' and taught in schools since the 1950s
    I think you mix two different distinctions here. The choice between "tjue" and "tyve" (and "sju" and "syv") is a matter of dialect or sociolect, and is not really related to the "new" counting method. For example, I usually say "femogtjue", but sometimes "tjuefem". I always use "tjuefem" in telephone numbers and other longer series of numbers. But I never say "femogtyve", and certainly not "tyvefem"!

    This is probably a matter of generation. I am 55 years old, but I think young people prefer the "new" counting method. This is also confirmed by research, see:
    Enogseksti eller sekstien
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    Yes, 25 was not a good example, because of tjue vs. tyve - 55 would have been better. At that time there were femogtyveøringer and more small shops, so shopkeepers would often say the price: kr. 4,25 or 5,75 or whatever and they mostly used the older system. I was interested in this because although a lot of the changes in written Norwegian were based on dialects, e.g. 'fram' instead of 'frem', this swapping round of the numbers from the Danish/German way to the Swedish way had, I believe, no basis in Norwegian dialects at all, and was entirely a reaction to the 'Danish yoke' and perhaps also the German occupation not that many years before.
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    and was entirely a reaction to the 'Danish yoke' and perhaps also the German occupation not that many years before

    No, I don't really think so. According to the source I quoted in post #7,
    Initiativet kom fra Telegrafverket i 1949, og etter en grundig høring gjorde Stortinget et enstemmig vedtak i 1950 om å innføre den nye tellemåten i norsk talespråk. [...] Telegrafverkets - senere Televerket - argument for å endre tellemåten hadde praktiske årsaker. Sekssifrede telefonnummer ble innført i Oslo, og man mente at det ville være en fordel om tallene ble uttalt i den rekkefølgen de ble skrevet. Man mente også at den nye tellemåten ville være en fordel for skolebarn, utlendinger og regnskapsfolk.

    This seems to be based on the belief in rationality, practicality and modernity of this era, also seen in architecture: it was fashionable to tear down everything old-fashioned and build something new, straightforward, and practical. And of course, it is impractical to read the telephone number 46 83 92 as "seksogførti treogåtti toognitti", with the words in a completely different order than the corresponding digits. It is easy to make a mistake and switch some digits when you write down the telephone number.
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    Thanks for your info. The same arguments could of course be used for German, Danish and Dutch, but as Norwegian, for obvious historical reasons, had already seen far more official changes than those languages, there would have been much more opposition in the other countries, no doubt.

    By the way, we used to use the "old system" in English and it survives in the way some people tell the time. My mother used to say e.g. "five and twenty to six" and I think I said it too, many years ago.
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    Man mente også at den nye tellemåten ville være en fordel for skolebarn, utlendinger og regnskapsfolk.
    Speaking as one of those foreigners, it would be best for me if the country settled on one version of the language and stopped messing about with it. :)
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    When I first went to Norway in 1968-70, I'm pretty sure that the usual word for 'supporters' (of a football club) was 'tilhengere'. Now if I google '(name of club)tilhengere', I find far fewer hits than for '(name of club)supportere'. Same in Danish: much more 'Brøndbysupportere' than 'Brøndbytilhængere'. Does my memory serve me right? Has the usual word for this and other sporting concepts changed so much in 50 years? Has there been a similar development in Danish and Swedish? (but maybe not in Icelandic?)
    I came to Norway in 1982, and I have registered very large changes in the spoken and written Norwegian, both lexical and grammatical.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    That's interesting, Ben Jamin. Could you give some examples?
    Here are some examples (most recent):
    1. The lost of distinction between "realis" and "irrealis". The two modi "han kunne gjøre det" og "han kunne ha gjort det" are now fused into one "han kunne gjort det".
    3. Disapperance of the full fledged conditional clause "dersom jeg hadde gjort det ...", replaced by "hadde jeg gjort det".
    2. Extended use of the past participle instead of the infinitive (I can't find a good example just now, but I'll supply it later).
    3. Massive occurrence of "code switching": using whole clauses in English in the flow of Norwegian. Usually used unconsciously.
    4. Massive replacement of old good Norwegian words by Anglicisms, for example "fighte" instead of "kjempe".
    5. The "garpegenitiv" replacing almost entirely the s-genitive.
    6. Extensive use of the possessive pronomen "sin" for any person or thing mentioned in the sentence, not only about the acting subject, for example "Politiet kjørte ham til leiligheten sin".
     
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    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    1. The lost of distinction between "realis" and "irrealis". The two modi "han kunne gjøre det" og "han kunne ha gjort det" are now fused into one "han kunne gjort det".
    I would have said that "han kunne gjort det" was an abbreviated form of "han kunne ha gjort det", and means "he could have done it (on a specific occasion)". While "han kunne gjøre det" means "he was able to do it (generally)". Would you agree, and say that now no distinction is now made between those two meanings? Or have I misunderstood something?

    I was going to comment that the use of the devil, and hell in swearing seems to have been largely replaced by English sexual obscenities (including in contexts that would not be acceptable in English-speaking countries), but I guess that comes under your point 4, even if the literal meaings are very different.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I would have said that "han kunne gjort det" was an abbreviated form of "han kunne ha gjort det", and means "he could have done it (on a specific occasion)". While "han kunne gjøre det" means "he was able to do it (generally)". Would you agree, and say that now no distinction is now made between those two meanings? Or have I misunderstood something?
    Yes, you have understood correctly. I mean exactly what I have written: "han kunne gjøre det" og "han kunne ha gjort det" are now both replaced with "han kunne gjort det". Maybe older people still use the distinction, but it has been a long time since I saw or heard any of the "old" forms.
     
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    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    You are of course right in pointing out the influence from English. I am not so sure about all your examples. I don't have any systematic evidence, but I doubt that "han kunne gjort det" or "hadde jeg gjort det" are recent constructions. At least I think I used them back in 1982.

    Regarding spoken language, I think the changes depends on where you live and who you speak with. The dialects are still there, but they have become more regional rather than local. In Oslo, the distinction between Western and Eastern Oslo is not as strong as it used to be, and more people speak something in-between.

    There are also changes in how people speak in public. For example, TV news anchors used to try to speak as distinctly as possible, now they try to speak more natural.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    You are of course right in pointing out the influence from English. I am not so sure about all your examples. I don't have any systematic evidence, but I doubt that "han kunne gjort det" or "hadde jeg gjort det" are recent constructions. At least I think I used them back in 1982.
    I have no systematic evidence for my assertion, I only register how people speak and write in public media. I didn't say that the usage is very new, it may stem even from much earlier times, but during the last, let's say 10 years, it became universal.
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    Number 2 is interesting, Ben Jamin. I've been thinking hard to find examples where you could only say 'kunne gjøre' and not 'kunne gjort', but mostly you can say both, e.g. 'Vi kunne reise til Danmark i morgen' or 'Vi kunne reist til Danmark i morgen' etc. etc. But at last I thought of one: 'Vi lette lenge, men vi kunne ikke finne ham' *'kunne ikke funnet' går ikke. Must be something to do with the past tense :)
     

    myšlenka

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    This is well outside the scope of the thread but I feel the need to point out a few things. Presenting a list of "very large changes in the spoken and written Norwegian, both lexical and grammatical" for the last 40 years without any systematic evidence is courageous and I find that some of it is misrepresented.
    1. The lost of distinction between "realis" and "irrealis". The two modi "han kunne gjøre det" og "han kunne ha gjort det" are now fused into one "han kunne gjort det".
    I would have said that "han kunne gjort det" was an abbreviated form of "han kunne ha gjort det", and means "he could have done it (on a specific occasion)". While "han kunne gjøre det" means "he was able to do it (generally)". Would you agree, and say that now no distinction is now made between those two meanings? Or have I misunderstood something?
    There may indeed be a change going on here, or more specifically a realignment in the paradigm as one distinction will be lost anyway. In a more conservative system, realis is distinct from irrealis (b and c) but not distinct from the indicative past tense (a and b). In this system, the realis/irrealis distinction is morphologically coded but not the past/conditional distinction. Realigning the meaning along past/conditional instead, will separate the indicative past tense from the conditionals, but at the cost of collapsing realis/irrealis. In either case, some overlap in meaning is inevitable and ambiguities will have to be resolved in context.

    a) Han kunne gjøre det - past tense
    b) Han kunne gjøre det - conditional (realis)
    c) Han kunne ha gjort det - past conditional (irrealis)

    Also, leaving out ha from the past conditional is perhaps an abbreviation somehow, but they are not equivalent.
    d) Han skulle ha lest boka på mandag - allows an interpretation where the reading takes place before Monday.
    e) Han skulle lest boka på mandag - does not allow an interpretation where the reading takes place before Monday.
    3. Disapperance of the full fledged conditional clause "dersom jeg hadde gjort det ...", replaced by "hadde jeg gjort det".
    I am not sure what "full fledged" is supposed to mean in this context. Conditionals of this type seem to go back to proto-Germanic. It is probably a direct continuation of the old Germanic subjunctive, still morphologically expressed in German (hätte ich geld, würde ich....) and Icelandic (hefði ég peninga, myndi ég....) but in the other Germanic languages, the only cue to the conditional meaning is word order itself. The construction is thus not a recent invention and has probably existed in the language before the word dersom came about. I think you got it wrong though. My gut feeling is that conditionals with the overt conditional marker hvis is squeezing out the old Germanic one as well as dersom.

    Caveat: I did not have the Icelandic and German sentence fragments verified.
    2. Extended use of the past participle instead of the infinitive (I can't find a good example just now, but I'll supply it later).
    Sentences like:
    f) Jeg skulle likt å sett filmen.
    g) Det hadde vært gøy å dratt på ferie.


    Some linguists believe that this is a relict of the subjunctive in Old Norse that has survived in irrealis contexts in many dialects so this extended use of the past participle is not random but rather constrained. If that is true, then spreading it would perhaps mean regaining a meaning distinction that once was lost. For some of these dialects, I think there would be a meaning difference between:
    h) Han hadde likt å se på henne - Realis
    i) Han hadde likt å sett på henne - Irrealis
    5. The "garpegenitiv" replacing almost entirely the s-genitive.
    The s-genitive has had competitors for several centuries and has been losing ground all the time, not only to the "garpegenitiv". If this change has followed the famous s-curve, most of the job was most likely done a long time before 1982. In the last 40 years, we have probably only seen the final breaths of the s-genitive after a decline that started centuries ago.
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    I suppose Ben Jamin and Myšlenka are talking about the s-genitive in the spoken language, but it's still very much alive in written Norwegian, e.g. 'regjeringens forslag', and consequently in the spoken language too, in cases where politicians and others are talking about such things.
     
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