Norwegian: å re

littlepond

Senior Member
Hindi
Hei alle sammen!

In a hardback dictionary I possess, "å re en seng" is given as "to make a bed". However, in the online ordboka, "å re opp en seng" is the phrase given. Do both of them give the same meaning of making a bed, and are both of them frequent in speech and writing?

Also, why does "re" become "rede" in the expression "som man reder, så ligger man"? Was "re" a variant spelling of "rede" once upon a time? The aforementioned ordboka mentions "rede" verb but only with the meaning "nå sjelden: bringe klarhet i" (bring clarity to something). It also gives the expression, but why "rer" becomes "reder" in the expression?

Thanks in advance!
 
  • Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Hei alle sammen!

    In a hardback dictionary I possess, "å re en seng" is given as "to make a bed". However, in the online ordboka, "å re opp en seng" is the phrase given. Do both of them give the same meaning of making a bed, and are both of them frequent in speech and writing?

    Also, why does "re" become "rede" in the expression "som man reder, så ligger man"? Was "re" a variant spelling of "rede" once upon a time? The aforementioned ordboka mentions "rede" verb but only with the meaning "nå sjelden: bringe klarhet i" (bring clarity to something). It also gives the expression, but why "rer" becomes "reder" in the expression?

    Thanks in advance!
    I don't know which of the phrases is more common (it is not a typical conversation topic), but both mean the same, while "re opp" is certainly newer. There is a tendency in Norwegian to add prepositions to "strengthen" the verb (like "open up!" in English).
    "Rede" is the older form of "re", the typical phenomenon in all languages is that words become shorter with time (erosion), until they are so short that the speaker feel they have to add another word to compensate.
     

    Svenke

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    It's verbs with an historical single d after the vowel that are most often shortened, optionally or always: lade > la, vade > va, skade > ska, bede > be, sprede > spre, lide > li, glide > gli etc. etc.
     
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