To ask someone for the time, we Swedes literally ask how much is the clock?. This doesn’t, however, mean that we want to buy a new watch – it’s just the expression we use. In Swedish, this is hur mycket är klockan?. Mycket is a new word in this lesson, and is usually used with an uncountable amount of something. It is thus the equivalent of the English much. We could also use the question word vad instead and ask what the clock is.
When refering back to the word klockan, we have to use den, which means it. In Swedish, both den and det are used in this situation, depending on the gender of the noun they refer back to. This is something we will talk about later on in the beginner course. Right now, you just need to know that we say den when refering to klockan
When we want to specify minutes to or past the whole hour, we use the prepositions i and över. We can also skip (and this is more the norm than an exception) the word minuter as we see fit. As you can see in the examples, we could also say klockan instead of den or hon.
Sometimes we want to ask when something is going to happen in the future. Here we use the word när which means when. This is then followed by a verb.
When answering this type of question we need to know how to talk about the during until a point of time. This is done with the preposition om and NOT i which is the equivalent of in in English. This is used to talk about the duration of something. This is confusing, I know. Hang in there. Abstract prepositions cannot be translated directly.
When talking about quarter and half, we say kvart and halv. Important to note here is that we only say halv without any preposition and it refers to the next whole hour and not the previous, like in English.
In Swedish, we can also talk about five minutes to the half hour.