Children confuse me…

Or rather, the Swedish word for them does.

Barn. Seems easy enough, right? I thought so too. But little did I know it would soon become the bane of my existence. 

My brain has almost got a grip on the slippery little word now, but – much like actual children – a moments inattention and it causes trouble. Again.

  • A child – Ett barn. Got it. Sort of.
  • Children – Barn. Riiight… another sheep/sheep scenario. I can deal with this.

However, I’d somehow gotten it into my head that “people” words = en words, forgetting that this is one of those irritating little exceptions. So when “the child” popped on Duolingo, I practically swaggered up to the keyboard and cockily entered barnen as the translation.

NOPE. Barnet. Like the dodgy hairstyle. (I admit, I giggled when I realised.)

So, what’s barnen? “The children”. Going against all that is good and holy in this world, that word is plural, not singular. My little English brain can’t take it!

Now I’ve written this down, hopefully I won’t forget again! If I do, I’m renouncing kids forever.

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2 thoughts on “Children confuse me…

  1. I also have this problem with the words that end with “en” when plural. They are just confusing.
    I found an Essential Swedish Grammar book online. It’s one of those super pocket books. The cover is the flag of Sweden.
    But the way the grammar is explained and exceptions summarised was more helpful than the massive Routledge Swedish Grammar I bought myself 😉
    Also, when I get tired of these situations, I just “stop caring” and eventually I remember the correct form by reading a lot. I may not know the grammar rule, but eventually if I read more, I’ll visualise more and remember the sound as well… And hopefully I’ll write the correct form. Hopefully 😉
    Don’t worry. You are doing great!! 🙂

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