Norwegian/Lesson 1

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Norwegian | Table of Contents - Introduction - Lesson 1 - Lesson 2 - Lesson 3



Lesson One

Pronunciation Guide[edit]

Pronunciation in Norwegian can be quite different from English pronunciation. There are three extra letters: æ, ø, and å. The letter "æ" is pronounced like the letter "a" in the English word "mad". The letter "ø" is pronounced like the letters "e" and "u" together. The sound is prominent in French words, as in the words "peu" and "deux". The letter "å" is pronounced like "aw". The best way to make this sound is to form one's mouth as if one were going to say the short "o" sound in English, but then making an English "a" sound. There are also other variations in Norwegian pronuncation. The letter "s" becomes a "sh" sound when followed by the letter "l" or when following the letter "r" (i.e. norsk is pronounced "norshk"). The letter "r" is pronounced like the Spanish "r", but is never rolled. The "r" sound in Norsk is produced simply by rapping the tongue against the hard palate once. The letter "g" is pronounced like 'g' in "good", but like 'y' in "yes" before i or j, and silent at the end of some words. The letter "j" is like the English letter "y". The letter "d" is pronounced like the English "d", but is in most cases silent at the end of a syllable or at the end of a word. The letters "q", "w", "z", "x", and "c" are generally only found in foreign words and have no real function in Norsk.

Part One[edit]

Dialogue One[edit]

Arne: God Dag! (Goo dahg)

Bente: God Dag! Hvordan har du det? (Goo dahg! Vor-DAN har deuh deh?)

Arne: Jeg har det bra, takk. Og du? (Yai har deh bra, takk. Aw doo?)

Bente: Bare bra, takk. (Ba-reh bra, takk)

Arne: Hva gjør du? (va yuhr doo?)

Bente: Jeg studerer. (Yai stu-derer.)

Vocabulary[edit]

Bare [Ba-re]: Just/Only

Bra [bra]: Good/Fine

Dag [dag]: Day

Det [deh]: It

Du [doo]: You

Gjør [yuhr]: Doing

God [goo]: Good

Har [har]: Have

Hva [va]: What

Hvordan [vor-DAHN]: How

Jeg [yai]: I

Og [aw]: And

Studerer [stu-DARE-er]: Study

Takk [tahk]: Thanks

Phrases[edit]

Hva gjør du? What are you doing?

Hvordan har du det? How are you? (Literally: How do you have it?)

Jeg har det bra. I'm fine. (Literally: I have it good)

God Dag: Good morning (Literally: Good day)

Exercises[edit]

Translate the following words/phrases from Norwegian into English.

1 - Jeg har det bra

2 - Du

3 - Hva

4 - God Dag

5 - Takk

Extra Vocabulary[edit]

Here are a few more words which will increase your Norwegian vocabulary.

Engelsk [en-GELSK]: English

Norsk [norshk]: Norwegian

Norge [nor-GAH]: Norway

Oslo [Osh-lo]: Oslo (The capital of Norway)

Dialogue Two[edit]

You should be able to understand this conversation fairly well now.

Bente: God Dag!

Arne: God Dag! Hva gjør du?

Bente: Jeg studerer.

Arne: Hva studerer du?

Bente: Jeg studerer norsk. Og du? Hva studerer du?

Arne: Jeg studerer engelsk.

Part Two[edit]

Dialogue Three[edit]

Emma: Hei! Jeg er norsk.

Bjørn: Hei, jeg er norsk også.

Emma: Hvor bor du?

Bjørn: Jeg bor i Oslo. Hvor bor du?

Emma: Jeg bor i Bergen, men jeg kommer fra Tromsø.

Bjørn: Hvor er Tromsø?

Emma: Tromsø er i Nord-Norge.


Vocabulary[edit]

Bergen [BAR-yen]: Bergen, A large city on the western coast of Norway

Bor [boor]: Live/Living

Er [ar]: Is/Am/Are

Fra [fra]: From

Hei [hai]: Hi/Hello

Hvor [voor]: Where

I [ee]: In

Kommer [COME-mer]: Come/Coming

Men [men]: But

Nord [noort]: North

Nord-Norge [noort-nor-gah]: Northern Norway

Også [OH-saw]: Also

Tromsø [TROHM-seuh]: Tromso, a city in far northern Norway.

Phrases[edit]

Jeg kommer fra... I come from...

Jeg bor i... I live in...

Hvor kommer du fra? Where do you come from?

Hvor bor du? Where do you live?

Gender[edit]

In Norwegian, every noun (a person, place, thing, or idea) has a gender assigned to it. There are three genders in Norwegian - Masculine, Feminine, and Neuter. There are very few feminine nouns used in Norwegian, and many people simply treat them as masculine nouns, so in this course, we will combine the masculine and feminine genders into the "common gender".

Below are two nouns - One neuter noun, one common noun.


Vin [veen]: Wine

Øl [euhl]: Beer


Vin is common, and Øl is neuter. Why does this matter? It matters because it affects the way you treat these words. An example is with the Norwegian word for "one", which can either be "en" or "ett".


En vin [en veen]: A wine [en vin]

En øl [en euhl]: A beer


Common gender words use "en" for one, while Neuter gender words use "et" for one. We will cover more on gender later.

Forming Questions[edit]

To form a question in Norwegian, invert the verb and noun. For instance...

Du kommer fra: You come from (A statement) Kommer du fra: Do you come from (lit: come you from) (A question)

You can also form a question by adding a question word (what, where, who, etc). So far, you have learned the words "hvordan", "hva", and "hvor".

Hva lærer du? What are you learning? Hvordan har du det? How are you? Hvor kommer du fra? Where do you come from?


Exercises[edit]

Turn the following statements into questions.

1. Du er norsk.

2. Jeg er engelsk.

3. Du bor i Bergen.

4. Du har det bra.

5. Du studerer engelsk i London.

6. Jeg kommer fra Norge.

7. 'Jeg heter ali.

Extra Vocabulary[edit]

(En) Kaffe [KAH-fuh]: Coffee

(En) Fisk [fisk]: Fish

Liker [LEE-care]: Like/Likes

Dialogue Four[edit]

You should be able to understand the following dialogue given your current knowledge of Norwegian.

Emma: God Dag! Hvordan har du det?

Bjørn: Bare bra, takk. Og du?

Emma: Jeg har det bra. Hva har du?

Bjørn: Jeg har en fisk.

Emma: Liker du fisk?

Bjørn: Ja, jeg liker fisk. Liker du kjøtt?

Emma: Nei, men jeg liker kaffe.

Bjørn: Jeg liker kaffe, også, og jeg liker øl og vin.

Emma: Hvor bor du?

Bjørn: Jeg bor i Oslo. Og du?

Emma: Jeg bor i Tromsø i Nord-Norge.