Danish language facts that are good to know!
Danish language facts can be quite interesting especially for those that are passionate about understanding various dialects. The Danish language has long been a powerful Scandinavian language. It serves as one of the official languages of the European Union, is a working language of the Nordic Council. Here, we are offering some of the most interesting Danish language facts:
Danish is a North Germanic language and is derived from Old Norse. Initially the same language as Swedish, Old Danish evolved into Medieval Danish in the 12th century. In 1550, the orthographic choices of Christiern Pedersen for translating the Bible into Danish set the writing standards for Danish.
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Danish language facts that you will enjoy!
It is spoken by approximately 6 million speakers and is an official language in Denmark and the Faroe Islands A very intriguing Danish language facts is that the letter å did not exist in written Danish until 1948, before which it was written as a double-a (aa). Though, “å” hasn’t completely replaced “aa”.
Norwegian, Swedish and Danish are mutually understandable, which means that speakers of each language can understand one another. In this way, learning Danish is almost like learning three languages in one
There are 3 additional vowels in Danish compared to English: Æ, Ø and Å. It also has a wide range of vowel phonemes that is total 27.
Danish language facts: the longest word
Words can be added collectively to make extremely long words in Danish. Speciallægepraksisplanlægningsstabiliseringsperiode, meaning “period of plan stabilizing for a specialist doctor’s practice”, is the longest Danish word. Other examples contain: multiplikationsudregningstabelshæfteopbevaringsreolsproduktionsfacilitet.
Particularities of Danish Language
- Two Genders
Nouns in Danish can take either of two genders, but they are known as common and neuter rather than masculine and feminine. The division between these two genders is mostly random, though all nouns must belong to one or the other. This is some of the Danish language facts not all are aware of. That’s why it’s important to opt for professional Danish translation services.
- Official Language in Greenland
Although Danish is mainly spoken in Denmark, it’s spoken as a native language by about 20% of the population of Greenland, where it holds official language position.
- Polite Way of Speaking
English speakers often struggle with languages that differentiate between informal and polite ways of saying “you”. Danish does make this difference, as Du is informal whereas De is formal. However, De is rarely used in modern speech and is found in traditional speech or official letters.
Danish language facts: a fun way to pronounce words
- Creaky Voice
Danish has a clean phonological quality called stød, which sounds like a small hiccup or a crack in one’s voice. This is notoriously challenging for non-native speakers to master, but it’s important: stød is the only difference between the pronunciation of the words bønner (beans) and bonder.
- Counting is based on the Number 20
50, 60, 70, 80, and 90 numbers use a vigesimal system, meaning that they are based on multiples of 20 instead of 10 in Danish. For example, the word for sixty is tres. This is a shortened form of tresindtyve (tre-sinde-tyve), which means 3 times 20. These are some of the many Danish language facts that many are not aware of.
Danish language has influenced a lot on the other Scandinavian languages like Swedish and Iceland, and Norwegian, thanks to the Denmark-Northway union in the 14th century.
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