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Lesson Transcript

Beginner Season 1 Lesson 17 - Modesty is the Best Policy in Denmark!
INTRODUCTION
Eric: Hi everyone, and welcome back to DanishClass101.com. This is Beginner Season 1 Lesson 17 - Modesty is the Best Policy in Denmark! Eric here.
Anna: Hej! I'm Anna.
Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to express your opinion and use comparative adjectives. The conversation takes place at a party.
Anna: It's between Stine and Nanna.
Eric: The speakers are classmates. Okay, let's listen to the conversation.
DIALOGUE
Stine: Hvad syntes du om Line Sofies nye stil i dag?
Nanna: Hmm... Først syntes jeg, hun så bedre ud før.
Stine: Virkelig?
Nanna: Ja, men nu synes jeg, hun er pænere med det nye look.
Stine: Jeg synes også, hun virkede gladere og mere smilende.
Nanna: Jeg tror, det var godt, det var hende, der vandt den makeover.
Stine: Nå, jeg mener nu også, at du ville have haft godt af at vinde.
Nanna: Hvor er du morsom!
Eric: Listen to the conversation one time slowly.
Stine: Hvad syntes du om Line Sofies nye stil i dag?
Nanna: Hmm... Først syntes jeg, hun så bedre ud før.
Stine: Virkelig?
Nanna: Ja, men nu synes jeg, hun er pænere med det nye look.
Stine: Jeg synes også, hun virkede gladere og mere smilende.
Nanna: Jeg tror, det var godt, det var hende, der vandt den makeover.
Stine: Nå, jeg mener nu også, at du ville have haft godt af at vinde.
Nanna: Hvor er du morsom!
Eric: Now listen to the conversation with the English translation.
Stine: Hvad syntes du om Line Sofies nye stil i dag?
Stine: What did you think about Line Sofie's new style today?
Nanna: Hmm... Først syntes jeg, hun så bedre ud før.
Nanna: Hmm... at first I thought she looked better before.
Stine: Virkelig?
Stine: Really?
Nanna: Ja, men nu synes jeg, hun er pænere med det nye look.
Nanna: Yes, but now I think she is prettier with the new look.
Stine: Jeg synes også, hun virkede gladere og mere smilende.
Stine: I also think she seemed happier and was smiling more.
Nanna: Jeg tror, det var godt, det var hende, der vandt den makeover.
Nanna: I think it was a good thing that she was the one who won that makeover.
Stine: Nå, jeg mener nu også, at du ville have haft godt af at vinde.
Stine: Oh, I also think that winning would have done you good.
Nanna: Hvor er du morsom!
Nanna: You’re so funny!
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Anna: Eric, have you ever heard about Janteloven, or “The Law of Jante”?
Eric: No, what is it?
Anna: In short, the idea is that you shouldn’t think that you are better than anyone else. This idea is that the collective should take priority over individual success and achievement. This may also be one of the reasons why Danes are generally bad at receiving compliments.
Eric: Is that true even nowadays?
Anna: Well...lately it’s gradually becoming more and more acceptable or appropriate to place an emphasis on individual success, but only when you have truly earned it and deserve it.
Eric: I see. Okay.
VOCAB LIST
Eric: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary from this lesson. The first word is..
Anna: at synes [natural native speed]
Eric: to think, to feel, to find
Anna: at synes [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: at synes [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: ny [natural native speed]
Eric: new
Anna: ny [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: ny [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: god [natural native speed]
Eric: good
Anna: god [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: god [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: før [natural native speed]
Eric: before
Anna: før [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: før [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: at virke [natural native speed]
Eric: to work, to begin to take affect, to act, to seem, to appear
Anna: at virke [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: at virke [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: smilende [natural native speed]
Eric: smiling
Anna: smilende [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: smilende [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: at tro [natural native speed]
Eric: to believe, to think
Anna: at tro [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: at tro [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: at mene [natural native speed]
Eric: to mean, to think, to feel
Anna: at mene [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: at mene [natural native speed]
Eric: Next we have..
Anna: godt [natural native speed]
Eric: well
Anna: godt [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: godt [natural native speed]
Eric: And last..
Anna: hvor [natural native speed]
Eric: where, how
Anna: hvor [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Anna: hvor [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Eric: Let's have a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first word is..
Anna: før
Eric: which means “before.” As a preposition it can be used just like its English translation, to rank or to put things in order. For example, if someone comes before someone else in the line of inheritance, or when saying that family comes before career.
Anna: før can also be used as a conjunction.
Eric: In this case, it expresses that an event or action took place earlier in time. Anna, can you give us an example?
Anna: Sure. For example, you can say.. Det var sjovere, før de kom.
Eric: ..which means “It was funnier before they came.” Okay, what's the next phrase?
Anna: at have godt af
Eric: which means “to serve someone right.”
Anna: The phrase at have godt af consists of the infinitive marker at
Eric: which means “to,”
Anna: the verb have,
Eric: “have,”
Anna: the adverb godt,
Eric: which means “well,”
Anna: and the preposition af.
Eric: This word has several meanings such as “of,” “from,” and “by.” The complete sentence is a bit mean. It suggests that you think someone deserved their misfortune or punishment. In other words, when something “serves them right.” Anna, can you give us an example using this phrase?
Anna: Sure. Han har godt af at tabe.
Eric: “Serves him right to lose.” Okay, what's the last word?
Anna: hvor
Eric: which means “where, how.”
Anna: In Danish, you can use hvor to ask “where” someone or something is, similar to how you would ask in English.
Eric: It can also be used at the beginning of a relative clause. Again, the Danish usage is very similar to its English usage.
Anna: Finally, hvor can also mean “how.”
Eric: You can use it in relation to size, number, degree, extent, etc. For example you can say…
Anna: Hvor høj er du?
Eric: This means “How tall are you?”
Anna: Hvor mange gange skal jeg sige det?
Eric: “How many times do I have to say it?” Okay, now onto the lesson focus.

Lesson focus

Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to express your opinion and use comparative adjectives. Let’s start with some useful verbs that will come in handy when expressing your opinion.
Anna: The verbs are at synes, at tro, and at mene
Eric: Let’s have a look at each of these verbs, one by one.
Anna: The first verb is at synes, and it can be used to let people know what you think.
Eric: It means “to think,” “to feel,” or “to find.” In most cases, however, it is translated as “to think.”
Anna: at synes is quite straightforward.
Eric: Anna, can you give us some examples?
Anna: Sure. You might say...Jeg synes, det er en dårlig idé.
Eric: “I think it’s a bad idea.”
Anna: Or...Han syntes ikke, det gik godt.
Eric: “He did not think it went well.”
Anna: The second verb is at tro, and you can use it to express that you believe in something.
Eric: It means “to think” or “to believe,” but in most cases it’s used to express that you think something is plausible or likely, because of prior knowledge.
Anna: Compared to at synes, at tro is used more often to express a subjective opinion, view, or assumption about how something is or ought to be.
Eric: Let’s give some examples.
Anna: Hun tror, regnen stopper senere.
Eric: “She thinks the rain will stop later.”
Anna: Vi troede, du sov.
Eric: Meaning “We thought you were sleeping.”
Anna: You can also use this verb in the imperative mood, for example… Tro mig!
Eric: “Believe me!”
Anna: Finally, the third verb is at mene, and it can be used to express what you mean.
Eric: It means “to mean,” “to think,” or “to feel.”
Anna: Compared to the previous two verbs, at mene is stronger in the sense that it’s used to express what you honestly think or feel.
Eric: You can also use it to say that something is or was done with certain intentions or a specific attitude. Let’s take a look at some examples…
Anna: Hvad mener du?
Eric: “What do you mean?”
Anna: Han mente det godt.
Eric: Meaning “He meant it well,” or “He meant well.”
Anna: Nej… Jeg mener ikke, I har ret.
Eric: “No… I do not mean you are right.” Alright, now let’s cover our second topic for this lesson.
Anna: Making comparisons using adjectives.
Eric: Using comparisons can help you express your opinion about different topics in a nuanced and interesting way.
Anna: Right, in a previous lesson, we learned how adjectives can be used to compliment any sentence and idea.
Eric: Yes, but here we’ll focus on comparative adjectives. Conjugated regular adjectives become comparative adjectives by adding the ending...
Anna: -ere
Eric: ...to the base form.
Eric: Can you give us some examples?
Anna: Sure. ny
Eric: “new”
Anna: becomes nyere
Eric: “newer”
Anna: høj
Eric: “tall”
Anna: becomes højere
Eric: “taller.” It’s that simple! But keep in mind that the irregular adjectives don’t follow this rule.
Anna: In the lesson notes, You can find a conjugation chart for regular adjectives, another covering the most common irregular adjectives, and some sample sentences.
Eric: Alright, before we go, let's give some sample sentences using comparative adjectives.
Anna: Sure. Bilen er nyere end mit tøj.
Eric: “The car is newer than my clothes.”
Anna: Pigerne er højere end drengene.
Eric: “The girls are taller than the boys.”

Outro

Eric: Okay, that’s all for this lesson. Thank you for listening, everyone, and we’ll see you next time!
Anna: Vi ses!

5 Comments

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DanishClass101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Had you heard about Jante's Law before?

DanishClass101.com Verified
Thursday at 09:53 PM
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Hi Artur.


Thanks for posting.


Well done. Here are a few corrections:


Nej, jeg har ikke hørt om Janteloven før, men bor i Danmark, så jeg følger den regel.


Let us know if you have any questions.


Cheers


Marc

Team DanishClass101.com

Artur
Tuesday at 07:40 PM
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Hej. Nej, jeg har ikke hørd om Janteloven før, med bor i Danmark, jeg føler denne regel.

DanishClass101.com Verified
Wednesday at 10:20 PM
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Hi Puri.


Thanks for your question.


Jante is the name of a small fictive town in the Dano-Norwegian author Aksel Sandemose's satirical novel "A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks" (En flyktning krysser sitt spor, 1933).


In the first example it could also be "skal" as in:


Jeg synes, du skal undskylde.


With "skulle" it's indicated that the person should apologize in such a situation in general and at some undetermined time.

With "skal" it's indicated that the person is expected to apologize right away in that specific situation.


Concerning the second example, "ved" is present tense which is why "skal" also needs to be so. Alternatively it could be:


Han vidste ikke, hvad han skulle tro.


Let us know if you any further questions.


Best regards


Marc

Team DanishClass101.com



Puri
Monday at 05:00 PM
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Hej! Jeg har ikke hørd om Jante Law før. Hvem er det?


I have a question about skal and skulle.

In the exemple sentances in the vocabulary part there are:


-Jeg synes, du SKULLE undskylde

-Han ved ikke, hvad han SKAL tro


Why in the first sentance do you use “skulle” and in the second one do you use “skal”?


Tak!