sexta-feira, 13 de julho de 2012

Word order in questions

One of the difficult areas of Norwegian is the word-order in phrases. The good news is that if you make mistakes in this area, Norwegians will probably still understand what you are saying. However, you will sound very weird making these kinds of mistakes. What you should look for in phrases when learning Norwegian is the location of the verb in relation to the noun or pronoun.
One of the situations where the verb is in front of the noun is in questions. This is a soft start, because you can remember it by thinking of English where often the verb "To do" comes in front of the noun/pronoun, or even other examples where the verb only is first. For example the question "do you live here?". In Norwegian the verb "to do" is not used. Instead only the main verb is being used, and this is the one being conjugated. Unlike in simple statements, in questions the verb comes before the noun/pronoun.

Consider these few simple translations from English.
- Where do you live?
In Norwegian: Hvor Bor du? (Bor = present tense of Å bo; du = you)

Here is an example where main verb also is first, also in English.
- Is he smart?
In Norwegian: Er han smart?

In summary: In Norwegian with Hv-questions (similar to English wh-questions), the Hv-word comes first followed by the main verb that is conjugated. In non Hv-questions the verb comes first, followed by the noun/pronoun and possibly and adjective.

I also wrote an overview article about learning the Norwegian language:
How to learn Norwegian.
Online Norwegian Classes

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