Dialogue

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
In this lesson, we’ll cover another extremely important phrase: "Do you speak English?" Using this phrase is important for many reasons. For one, if the party you’re speaking to doesn’t understand English, at least they’ll be able to understand what you’re asking. Furthermore, it shows a lot of respect on your part, because you’ve made an effort to learn even a little bit of the language. For these reasons and many more, we’re going to cover this very important phrase.
GRAMMAR POINT
In Danish, "Do you speak English?" is
Taler du engelsk?
Let’s break it down:
(slow) Ta-ler du eng-elsk?
Once more:
Taler du engelsk?
Taler is a form of the verb tale which in English is translated as “to speak”.
(slow) Taler.
Taler.
Du is the pronoun “you”, and lastly you have the language name in this case “English”. In Danish that’s engelsk
Taler du engelsk?
Another commonly used version of this question is Kan du tale Engelsk? which would be “Can you speak English?”
In this sentence, we added “can” and changed the order of the pronoun and verb to form the question, using the root of the verb “to speak”
One more time:
(slow) Kan du tale engelsk?
Kan du tale engelsk?
In both questions, just change the language for the one you want to ask for. Let's try with some of the languages that are frequently taught in Danish schools.
“Do you speak French?" is
Taler du fransk?
The word for “French" is
fransk.
Let’s break it down:
(slow) Fransk.
Fransk.
The whole phrase is:
(slow) Taler du fransk?
Taler du fransk?
Now let’s try with German.
Taler du tysk?
Or:
Kan du tale tysk?
The word tysk means “German.”
When you ask the question “Do you speak English” in Danish, there is a big possibility you’ll get the answer in Danish.
Here are a few answers in Danish you might hear.
“Yes, I speak English” would be
Ja, jeg taler engelsk.
Let’s hear that slowly now:
(slow) Ja, jeg taler engelsk.
And one more time at natural native speed:
Ja, jeg taler engelsk.
The first word, Ja, means “yes.”
(slow) Ja.
Ja.
After this comes jeg taler, which is translated in English as “ I speak”.
Finally, we have engelsk, which means “English.”
(slow) En-gelsk.
Engelsk.
All together, that’s
(slow) Ja, jeg taler engelsk.
Ja, jeg taler engelsk.
But in most cases people will just answer with a Ja. “Yes”.
If the answer is negative, Danish people could say “No, I don’t speak English”:
Nej, jeg taler ikke engelsk.
Let’s break it down by syllable:
(slow) Nej, jeg ta-ler i-kke en-gelsk.
And again at natural native speed:
Nej, jeg taler ikke engelsk.
The first word, nej, means “no”.
(slow) nej.
nej.
Next we have taler ikke, which is our form for “don’t speak”.
And finally the language.
All together, that’s
(slow) Nej, jeg taler ikke engelsk.
Nej, jeg taler ikke engelsk.
Again here people might answer just with a “no”, which in Danish is:
Nej.
(slow) Nej.
Nej.

9 Comments

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DanishClass101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Hello Listeners! Are you ready to ask "Can you speak English?" in Danish? Let's practice here!

DanishClass101.com Verified
Monday at 10:57 PM
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Hi Lee Anne.


Thanks for commenting.


I'm surpised to learn that you know the colloquial "Sådan da".


The "r" is not correct in that sentence. It would be, if it was "Jeg taler dansk", but that has another meaning than in English. In Danish, it just means that the person is speaking Danish in that very moment, which goes without saying.


Have a nice day.


Marc

Team DanishClass101.com

Lee Anne
Wednesday at 09:51 PM
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Jeg kan taler dansk. Sådan da. 😜

Team DanishClass101.com
Monday at 04:49 PM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Hi Nikola,


Thank you for commenting.


We are always thrilled to hear from happy listeners enjoying our Danish lessons.


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.


Thank you!


Amalie

Team DanishClass101.com

Nikola
Saturday at 12:21 PM
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Every day i get deeper in love with this language!!! Great course!!!!

Team DanishClass101.com
Tuesday at 05:41 AM
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Hej Erica


Det var så lidt. ("You are welcome.")


If you have any further questions, please let us know.


Mange tak!


Amalie

Team DanishClass101.com

Erica
Wednesday at 05:18 AM
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Mange tak for svaret, Amalie, og for rettelsen! (Many thanks for the reply, Amalie, and for the correction!) :)

Team DanishClass101.com
Tuesday at 03:08 AM
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Hej Erica


Tak for din kommentar (Thank you for your comment).


Du og din mand kan virkelig mange sprog (You and your husband truly know many languages).


"Practice sentences" er "øvesætninger" på dansk ("Practice sentences" is "øvesætninger" in Danish).


Sig til, hvis du har nogle spørgsmål (Please let us know if you have any questions).


Mange tak!


Amalie

Team DanishClass101.com

Erica
Tuesday at 03:24 AM
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Tak for lektionen!


Her er nogle praksis sætninger:


Kan du tale engelsk? Jeg taler lidt dansk, og også lidt spansk, fransk, og tysk. Min mand taler engelsk, russisk, og ukrainsk.


(Translation:


Thank you for the lesson!


Here are some practice sentences:


Can you speak English? I speak a little Danish, and also a little Spanish, French, and German. My husband speaks English, Russian, and Ukrainian.)