A Simplified Grammar of the Swedish Language/Part II/Conjunctions

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Conjunctions. (Bindeord.)

The conjunction samt, 'with,' 'also,' is frequently used in the place of 'and;' as, Generalen kom med grefven samt presten, 'the general came with the count and the clergyman.'

Ej heller, 'nor,' is used after a negative; as, min fader vet det icke, ej heller min broder, 'neither my father nor my brother knows it.'

Ej, or icke blott, 'not only,' is used in combination with men, 'but,' or utan afven, 'but also,' 'but even;' as, ej blott min fader, men min broder vet det, 'my brother knows it as well as my father;' icke blott fadren, utan öfven brodren trodde det, 'not only the father, but the brother even believed it.'

Att, 'that,' often requires to be preceded by än, 'than,' or för, 'for;' as, barnet är yngre än att det kunna resa allena, 'the child is too young to be able to travel alone;' hon var alt för mycket nedslagen, för att hon skulle gå i sällskap, 'she was much too depressed to go into society;' Svenskarne uppreste sig mot Kristian II, af Danmark, derför att han var en tyrann, 'the Swedes rose against Christian II. of Denmark because he was a tyrant.'

Så sant som, kvar om icke, 'if not,' may be used in an elliptical sense; as, jag är oskyldig, så sant mig Gud hjelpe, 'I am innocent, so help me God.' Om jag vinner spelet blir jag glad, hvar om icke, tröstar jag mig, 'I shall be glad if I win the game, but if I do not, I shall console myself.' is often used at the beginning of a secondary sentence, to connect it with the primary sentence; as, när min vän kommer så är jag väl tillfreds, 'when my friend comes, I am well pleased,' om vädret blir vackert, så kommer min syster i afton, 'if the weather should be good, my sister will come this evening.'

Såsom, 'as', is often used in the sense of 'namely;' as, från Ostindien erhållas allahande kryddor, såsom peppar kanel, etc., 'from the East Indies we obtain various spices, namely, pepper, cinnamon,' etc. Nämligen, 'namely' is, on the other hand, used in the sense of 'for' 'because;' as, hans beteende är oförklarligt; han har nämligen alltid ansetts vara en hederlig man, 'his conduct is inexplicable because he has always been regarded as an honest man.' Ty, may be similarly used; as, Åskan är nyttig, ty hon rensar luften, 'thunder is of use because it clears the air.'

Antingen — eller are used in the sense of 'whether' — 'or;' as, han har änu ej hestämt sig antingen han skall bli läkare eller jurist, 'he has not yet decided if he will be a doctor or a lawyer.' The elliptical expression vare sig, 'be it,' may be similarly employed; as, vare sig rik, vare sig fattig, så bör man njuta shydd af lagen, 'whether it be rich, or poor, all ought to enjoy the protection of the law.'

The conversion of adverbs and prepositions into conjunctions, and the post-position of prepositions, of both of which we subjoin a few additional examples, constitute peculiar features of Swedish, specially worthy of attention owing to the light which they throw on the origin of various idiomatic expressions in English.


Icke mannen, utan qvinnan förde ordet.
It was the woman and not the man who spoke.

Han sprang, eller snarare flög.
He sprang, or rather flew.

Han är för dem hvad han fordom varit.
He is the same to them as he formerly was.

Han är fegare, än att han skulle mga försöket.
He is too cowardly to make the attempt.

Bäst jag språng, horde jag ett rop bakom mig.
As I ran (as I best could) I heard a cry behind me.

Det första han kommer hem, skall han höra. Er på dörren.
As soon as he comes home, he will drive you out of doors.

Än regnar det, än skiner solen.
It either rains, or the sun shines.

Gossen tar jag vård om.
I will take charge of the boy.

Oss emellan sagdt, gjorde han mig emot.
Between ourselves, he acted against me.

Linné blef en furste i den vetenskap han egnade sig åt.
Linntæus was a prince in the science to which he devoted
himself.

Han var frisk utom att han haltade något.
He was fresh and cool, although he had not stopped on
the way.

Huru lärd han än är, forstår han icke detta.
However learned he may be, he does not understand that.

Luften är icke varm, oaktadt solen skiner.
The air is not warm, although (notwithstanding that) the sun shines.

Hon såg mig an.
She looked at me.

Hvad än må inträffa.
Whatever (then) may happen.

Dagen för än han for.
The day before (than) he started.

At tage sig bra ut.
To look well.

Han tar rocken .
He puts on his coat.

Hvem tar ni mig för?
Who do you take me for?

Här tar vägen af.
Here the road turns off.

Det är ingenting at tale om.
It is not worth speaking of.

Bara jag viste sanheten!
If I only knew the truth!

Man gör framsteg derigenom att man är flitig.
One makes progress by being diligent.