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Grammar notes

Welcome to our second Grammar notes step

This week, we will present some interesting notes about verbs, prepositions and conjunctions.


The infinitive

The infinitive marker is å (like “to” in English).

The infinitive marker is used when the verb is in the infinitive:

Hyggelig å hilse på deg. Nice to meet you.

Verbs in the present tense

You add -r to the infinitive to form the present tense:

Infinitive Present tense
å komme (to come) → kommer
å sitte (to sit) → sitter

It does not matter who is carrying out the verb. You add –r to the infinitive form of the verb after all pronouns: I, you, he, she, it, we, you and they:

Jeg kommer fra England. I come from England.
Hun kommer fra Italia. She comes from Italy.
Vi kommer fra Norge. We come from Norway.

Note that some verbs have irregular present tense forms:

Infinitive Present tense
å være (to be) → er
å gjøre (to do) → gjør

Stå/sitte/ligge + present tense

Norwegian does not have a present continuous form like in English:

I am VERB + ing = I am doing (something).

However, we often use the verbs stå (stand), sitte (sit) or ligge (lie) + the present tense to express an ongoing action:

Benjamin står og venter. Benjamin is waiting.
Alex sitter og snakker med ei dame. Alex is talking to (with) a woman.

The position in which the subject is when performing the action, decides whether you should use stå, sitte or ligge.


I or på?

Even Norwegians get sometimes confused with prepositions and can mix up whether they should use I or PÅ.

The general rule, however, is:

I (in) + continents, countries, cities (in/on/at) + mountain, islands, places in the countryside, parts of a city
i Europa på Mount Everest
i Norge på Sumatra, på Mallorca
i Oslo på Gardermoen (a place outside Oslo), på Grorud, på Tøyen (both parts of Oslo)


In front of some inland cities in Norway, we use instead of i: På Lillehammer, på Hamar, på Voss.

But don’t worry, you will read more about this later on.


What does a conjunction do?

It connects sentences together.

The Norwegian conjunctions og (and) and men (but) connect two or more sentences together:

De ser pappa, og Dina roper. They see dad and Dina shouts.
Det går bra, men det er ei lang reise. I am fine but it is a long journey.
Jeg kommer fra Norge, og jeg snakker norsk. I am from Norway and I speak Norwegian.

OBS: Did you notice the use of comma in these Norwegian sentences?

You have to put a comma before og and men when the two sentences you connect have two different subjects (De og Dina), but also when the same subject is repeated in both sentences (Det og det ; Jeg og jeg)

That was it for this week!

Now, you are well prepared to move on to your next step!

You’ve got all you need to solve the grammar exercises for this week.


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This article is from the free online course:

Norwegian for Beginners 1

Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)