Page:A simplified grammar of the Danish language.djvu/25

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
13
modes of writing and spelling.
Köbmanden er i Kökkenet,
Kjöbmanden er i Kjökkenet,
Kjöbmanden er i Kjökkenet,


The merchant is in the kitchen.
Kapteinen,
Kaptejnen, or Captejnen,
Kaptejnen, or Captejnen,


The captain.
Vinen er ikke Sùr,
Viinen er ikke suur, or sur,
Viinen er ikke ſuur,


The wine is not sour.


It may be observed that cumbrous as is the older system of doubling e, i and u, it helps to mark the long sound of the vowel, as Green (Grēn), 'twig;' Sviin (Svīn), 'swine;' Huus (Hūs), 'house'. And this is specially important to foreigners, as these vowels, together with y, ö and ø, have two distinct sounds, one short and open; as, let, 'easy;' lidt, 'little,' godt, 'good;' Grund, 'foundation;' Tryk, 'pressure;' gör, 'does;'—and the other long and close; as, led, 'tiresome;' lide, 'to suffer;' god, 'good;' Gud, 'God;' tyk, 'thick;' gøer, 'barks.'

Accentuation, or stress, plays an important part in Dano-Norwegian, but is dependent on so many arbitrary rules that it requires a prolonged acquaintance with the tone in which the language is spoken by Danes and Norwegians to enable a stranger to acquire the various modifications of stress, characteristic of their mother-tongue.

As a general rule, it may be stated that where the word is of genuine Northern origin, the stress rests on the radical syllable, as, rēnlig (ren, 'clean'); urēnlig, ' 'uncleanly.' In