You, you, you, and you (Danish pronouns: the whys and when to use them Part 1)

Is it really necessary?

Well... Yes. The cold, hard truth is, in Danish there are four different ways (fire forskellige måder) to say you, depending on the situation. That´s right, four! (Det er rigtigt, fire!) The best way to learn when to use which version, is to relax (at slappe af) and listen to what others say (høre efter hvad andre siger): in a natural way (på en naturlig måde).

If you are more the “rules and regulations” type. Here's a crazy detailed post about how it works.

Du becomes Dig.

Han become Ham.

Hun becomes Hende.

Vi become Os.

I becomes Jer.

De becomes Dem.

The conjugation (bøjning) happens in one of the following cases:

  • When the pronoun acts as subject of the verb.

  • After verbs like blive or være.

  • When governed by a preposition.

  • Before a name.

You or you?

Du > Dig.

You > You.

  • As subject to the verb

Må jeg spørge dig om noget?

Can I ask you about something?

  • After verbs like blive or være (often after conjunctions like end or som)

Jeg har aldrig nogensinde mødt nogen som dig.

I have never in my life met someone like you.

Jeg tænkte nok, at det var dig.

I thought it was you.

  • Governed by a proposition

Hun kigger på dig.

She is looking at you.

You cannot use Du in any of the above examples.

Fast udtryk (Fixed Expressions)

Jeg siger dig.

I´m telling you / I'll tell you.

Used when you want to stress something you have just said or are going to say:

Du kan ikke forestille dig, hvor hårdt jeg har det. Nå, jeg siger dig.

You can’t imagine how hard it is for me. Well, I´ll tell you.

Kan du hygge dig så længe?

Have a cozy time!

He or him?

Han > Ham.

He > Him.

  • As subject to the verb.

Jeg kan rigtig godt lide ham.

I really like him.

  • After verbs like blive or være (often after conjunctions like end or som)

Det var ham, der kørte ind til mig.

It was him that drove into me.

Jeg vil have nogen som ham.

I want someone like him.

  • Governed by a proposition

Jeg spiller brætspil med ham hver anden uge.

I play board games with him every other week.

  • Before a name

Han er rigtig sød, ham Andreas.

He is really sweet, him (that) Andreas.

You cannot use han in any of the above examples.

Fast Udtryk (Fixed Expressions)

Det gør mig ondt for ham.

It gives me pain for him (I feel sorry for him).

There's a lot more to go, so I'm gonna break it up into two posts.


To be continued...

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