Någonting means something in Swedish and is the full length version of något and nått. These three words are all equally valid in spoken Swedish. The latter, however, is not allowed into written Swedish just yet. In our previous lesson you learned that a lot of endings are swallowed with other unemphasized vowels. This is probably the origin of that. Sometimes it is even reduced to only the emphasized syllable nå [nɔ].
We can also see this change in någon, someone, which turns to nån [nɔn] in spoken Swedish, and någonstans, somewhere, which is mostly pronounced nånstans [nɔnstans].
Få (auxiliary verb)
This word we’ve learned in previous lessons and it has a bunch of valid translations in English but is sometimes used as a filler without a greater meaning. In this case it could either be translated with “got to”, “had to” or with nothing.
Han fick äta bröd en hel vecka.
He had to/got to eat bread for a whole week.
Han fick syn på en fågel.
He spotted a bird.
Plötsligt fick han höra ett högt ljud.
Suddenly, he heard a loud noise.
Let’s recap some of the other meanings.
Får jag lov?
May I have this dance?
To be allowed
Jag får det för mamma.
My mother allows me.
Du får inte gå in där nu.
You mustn’t go in there now.
get (not an auxiliary verb)
Jag fick en present på min födelsedag.
I got a gift on my birthday.
Vi får se.
We’ll see about that.
Swearing in Sweden
The most universal word for swearing in Swedish is fan which is used in the same ways as the F-word in English. It is, however, way far not as loaded and safe to let your children hear it although it might not be too nice in certain settings. In an everyday situation this is used a lot and has a lot of meanings together with other words. You can replace this with the weaker tusan. However, if you want to scream out this curse, then fan is the way to go.
Fan, vad bra!
Wow, that’s great!
Fan, jag missade bussen.
Damn, I missed the bus.
This is basically used to amplify a statement. You could use this like “for god’s sake”. Another way to say this is with för helvete which is equal or a little bit stronger. Yet another way is the weaker för tusan, för sjutton and för sjutton gubbar. These last expressions aren’t really concidered swearing at all.
Så kan du inte göra för fan.
You can’t do that for god’s sake.
You use this to amplify an action like you would with “like crazy” in English. You can also replace this with the weaker som tusan or the little bit stronger som in i helvete.
Vi körde som fan.
We drove like crazy.