Norwegian: Jeg vs Eg

betfry

Senior Member
English - Great Britain
I only know a couple of Norwegian words (and only because I have a Norwegian friend!) but she started explaining to me the other day how you have two different ways of writing the language, and you start learning the second way when you are older. For "I" you say "Jeg" in the first type but "Eg" in the second, and you always have to respond to a letter you get in the same type, otherwise it's rude!

This seems weird but interesting :) more info please!

P.S the words I know are:

Jeg...eg...skol...nyre...er...takk.

Takk!

p.p.s Do you think I should start learning Norwegian?:)
 
  • Obil Tu

    Senior Member
    I only know a couple of Norwegian words (and only because I have a Norwegian friend!) but she started explaining to me the other day how you have two different ways of writing the language, and you start learning the second way when you are older. For "I" you say "Jeg" in the first type but "Eg" in the second, and you always have to respond to a letter you get in the same type, otherwise it's rude!

    This seems weird but interesting :) more info please!

    P.S the words I know are:

    Jeg...eg...skol...nyre...er...takk.

    Takk!

    p.p.s Do you think I should start learning Norwegian?:)

    That's an interesting collection of words!

    As you might have read on the page to which dinji posted a link, the rule of replying to letters in the "language" in which they're written only applies to government as far as I'm concerned. I don't think anyone would find it rude if friends reply to each other's letters in a different language (bokmål or nynorsk).

    And yes, of course you should learn Norwegian! I can't say that it's extremely useful on a global scale or anything, but it's not difficult grammatically and you'll recognize a lot of words that you use in English!

    Good luck!
     

    Huffameg

    Senior Member
    Norwegian - nynorsk
    I only know a couple of Norwegian words (and only because I have a Norwegian friend!) but she started explaining to me the other day how you have two different ways of writing the language, and you start learning the second way when you are older. For "I" you say "Jeg" in the first type but "Eg" in the second, and you always have to respond to a letter you get in the same type, otherwise it's rude!

    This seems weird but interesting :) more info please!

    P.S the words I know are:

    Jeg...eg...skol...nyre...er...takk.

    Takk!

    p.p.s Do you think I should start learning Norwegian?:)

    Also: find out more here.
     

    Obil Tu

    Senior Member
    Thankyou!

    ...so I should learn Bokmål, right?

    As it was suggested in the "bokmål/nynorsk" thread: Yes. I would say so. It's not as if you won't be able to read nynorsk afterwards in any case. And I suspect that a majority of learning books will focus on bokmål. I've seen a couple of examples (German ones) where they try to teach you both at the same time, which I found confusing and would not recommend.
     

    vestfoldlilja

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    No, in Bokmål it is Jeg and in Nynorsk it is Eg.

    It is important to note, that these versions are only the norm in written form. Neither Bokmål nor Nynorsk is commonly spoken. People speak in their respective dialects, where one will find other versions of I that differ in spelling and pronunciation, like æ, e, jæ.
     

    vestfoldlilja

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    You're welcome Alexmrphi :)

    I imagine learning Norwegian seem easier when you are concentrating on text-books and within a student-teacher setting, but ones out in the real world so to speak, one will find that the variations in spoken Norwgian in grammar, spelling and pronunciation will differ a lot from what are taught. And we're not very good at toning down our dialects either to make it easier to learners.
     

    Alxmrphi

    Senior Member
    UK English
    You're welcome Alexmrphi :)

    I imagine learning Norwegian seem easier when you are concentrating on text-books and within a student-teacher setting, but ones out in the real world so to speak, one will find that the variations in spoken Norwgian in grammar, spelling and pronunciation will differ a lot from what are taught. And we're not very good at toning down our dialects either to make it easier to learners.

    I suppose it makes it all the more interesting:) I'm glad Icelandic has no dialects as well (the Nordic language I'm learning), it'd be a nightmare, well, it already is a nightmare, don't want it to be more of one!!

    My experience with dialects is there is a standard version and then everyone has their own dialect (this happens in Italian), is this not the case in Norwegian, there is a written form and just different regional dialects?

    I suppose it really is based on what you want to learn Norwegian for, like for reading/hobby or if you want to live there, then would someone be best trying to learn a dialect?
     

    vestfoldlilja

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    We don’t have a standard form of dialect. We have two official written forms of Norwegian, Bokmål and Nynorsk. Both are taught in school, the majority will learn Bokmål as their first language and Nynorsk as the second, though there are people who have it the other way around.

    There are many regional dialects, broadly narrowed down to five regions, which all will, to varying degree, differ from our written forms and differ from each other. More here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norwegian_dialects

    If one wants to live in Norway, one cannot get around dialects; those are the spoken forms of Norwegian and that is how Norwegian sounds like.

    The standard for teaching students is Bokmål, with an East Norwegian tilt. I imagine it’s not easy getting used to the varying sounds of Norwegian and how one meaning of a word changes meaning from dialect to dialect.

    Another thing to note is that both Bokmål and Nynorsk usually have variations within themselves, and in that I mean that there is more than one way to spell the same word.

    Like a book – the book is en Bok – Boken/boka in Bokmål and to write – wrote – written is å skrive – skreiv – skrive/skrivi.
     
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