If I learn one Scandinavian language will I be understood in the other Scandinavian nations? Hi Scandinavian speakers! I was in Norway and Finland in June and I really fell in love with the place and the people. The languages are really nice (and somewhat similar to English) so I'd like to get into them. I know that Finnish is separate from the other few (so I'm not asking about that) but if I learned, say, Norwegian, could I use that for Danes, Swedes and Icelanders to understand me? I know Norwegians and Swedes can more or less understand each other - but are Danish and Icelandic (which I think is) completely separate or are there crossovers? If so, which is strategically the best one to learn to let me learn the others? Thanks in advance!
Mar 30, 2011 6:31 PM
Answers · 6
Yeah Swedish is the way to go. If you know Swedish you can understand written and spoken Norwegian quite well. You also can understand written Danish to some extent but I wouldn't be so sure about the spoken Danish. Danish sounds like UFO-Swedish. Icelandic is so old-fashioned that it's quite incomprehensive even if you know some other Nordic language. Finns are emos from different language than the rest of Scandavians. They theoretically know Swedish too because it's compulsory language in the school (because the 4-5% strong Swedish minority in Finland is economically powerful) but the motivation to learn it is generally so low that you survive better by English than by Swedish when it comes to communicating with Finns.
March 31, 2011
OK OK I noticed you're from the UK but you might enjoy this... ;) http://satwcomic.com/language-lesson
March 30, 2011
Actually, I love norwegian - it is really easy if you are an English speaker. It is more regular than Swedish, but I dare say, the rivalry between Swedes and Norwegians may raise it's head here! he he he - friendly rivalry of course.
November 21, 2011
I would go for Swedish. Swedes are all over the globe and I would be able to read Stieg Larsson in its original form (there are complaints about the English translation). As far as I know DK, NO and SE can communicate somehow. FI can certainly not. IC I have no idea.
March 31, 2011
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