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Phrases from "Den som draeber" (Danish)

 Language Learning Forum : Skandinavisk & Nordisk Post Reply
16 messages over 2 pages: 1 2  Next >>
RadinaM
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Spain
radinamatic.com
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Speaks: Serbian*, Catalan, EnglishC2, ItalianC2, SpanishC2
Studies: Danish

 
 Message 1 of 16
19 August 2014 at 3:43pm | IP Logged 
I'm working on bilingual subtitles for this series and I wanted to understand better the construction of this phrase:

Jeg er ved at undersøge det.

Now, the English translation I have is "That's what I'm checking out.", and what I am most curious about is the er ved at part. My Gylendals offers various examples:

det er ved at blive aften
it is getting dark

jeg er ved at dø af varme
I am sweltering; the heat is too much for me; the heat is killing me

mit hoved er ved at sprænges
my head is splitting

So what I am getting from this is that er ved at is Danish way to use verb to be, am I right? Is this construction "be + 2 prepositions" prevalent?

Thanks!


PS: I'm just starting with this subtitle so the thread is "to be continued"... ;)
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Cabaire
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Germany
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 Message 2 of 16
19 August 2014 at 5:10pm | IP Logged 
"er ved at" is a possibility to express the English continuous forms, for something that is just now happening and will continue to happen and only be finished in the future.

Jeg er ved at undersøge det: I am checking it, I am busy with checking it.

Jeg er ved at dø: I am dying, I am not yet dead, but I am on my way to death and I will be dead soon.

Edited by Cabaire on 19 August 2014 at 5:13pm

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RadinaM
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 Message 3 of 16
19 August 2014 at 6:04pm | IP Logged 
Haven't even noticed the pattern of continuous forms in all the examples, weird... :P

Thanks Cabaire, you just contributed to my lesson of the day!


So, here goes my second question:

Tog man hjem til mig, var min lejlighed upersonligt indrettet.

My take on the translation:

If I took you at my place, (lit: Took you home at me)
(you would find that) my apartment (was) impersonally furnished.


Does this sound acceptable? Keep in mind that these subs I'm making are not meant for a native English speaker who just wants to enjoy a good TV forensic show, just for my better understanding of contemporary Danish dialog.

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Cabaire
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Germany
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 Message 4 of 16
20 August 2014 at 12:49am | IP Logged 
I think "tage hjem" does not mean "bring someone to your home", but "go home", so I would translate (the sentence is shortend, a piece like "he would find that" is missing for brevitiy's sake):

If someone would come to my home, my apartment would be impersonally furnished.

Other examples:

Han var nødt til at tage hjem, for hans kone er blevet syg.
He has had to return home because his wife fell ill.

Han har måttet tage hjem i al hast.
He has had to return home quickly.

Kommissionen bør hellere tage hjem.
The Commission would be well advised to go home.
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Iversen
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Denmark
berejst.dk
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 Message 5 of 16
20 August 2014 at 2:15am | IP Logged 
Cabaire is right in assuming that "tage hjem" without an object means "go home to" or "come to". But you can also take somebody home with you, just as you can in English.

Apart from that the sentence is somewhat oldfashioned and formal, and the use of a simple preterite in the main phrase actually suggests that the anonymous potential visitor just as well can stay away: the flat is ALWAYS furnished in a formal style, whether anybody visits it or not. The point of view stays with the narrator. If you had said "Tog man hjem til mig, ville min lejlighed være upersonligt indrettet" you would stress the experience such a visitor would get.







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RadinaM
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Studies: Danish

 
 Message 6 of 16
20 August 2014 at 6:20am | IP Logged 
Cabaire, thanks, your effort to provide additional examples is very much appreciated! I was a bit surprised seeing the one with "Commision", but I'm guessing it's because bab.la scrapes the EU publicly available corpora. And now I'm curious about who was that advised "Commision" to go home... ;)

Iverson, you were spot on: the above sentence is from a forensic expert talking about home of a murderer who would definitely prefer anonymous potential visitors stay far away.

So how would "ville min lejlighed være" sound in English to reflect the visitor's experience?
I'm really looking forward to the day my knowledge of Danish will allow me this level of insight...
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Iversen
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 Message 7 of 16
20 August 2014 at 10:58am | IP Logged 
"If you went to my flat, the furnishing would be rather impersonal there"

or in a more elaborate version:

"If you went to my flat, you would find that the furnishing is rather impersonal there"


Edited by Iversen on 20 August 2014 at 11:01am

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montmorency
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 Message 8 of 16
20 August 2014 at 3:50pm | IP Logged 
@RadinaM::

I know that you are doing this for the Danish, and not because of the kind of TV series
it is, but I want to say that I think this was a sadly rather underrated little series,
and it's a shame it was discontinued. In the UK, it was only shown on a minor
commercial channel, and so interrupted by commercial breaks which didn't help, and I
only found out about it by chance (as compared to the more high-profile "Forbrydelsen"
which was shown ad-free on BBC4, a channel that has a certain amount of prestige value,
and is where we expect to find most of our subtitled drama).

I later got hold of the DVD(s), and sadly but not unexpectedly, there were only English
subtitles on there.

So I applaud the work you are doing, and good luck!


BTW, I have recently noticed that the film version of Jussi Adler-Olsen's "Kvinden i
buret" is on general release soon in the UK. They seem to have given it the same title
as the US version of the book "The Keeper of Lost Causes". (It was called "Mercy" in
the UK). It might be "up your street". :-)


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