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As Fall Sets in, Swedes Bring on the “mys” Posted by on Oct 22, 2019 in Culture, Grammar, Holidays, Swedish Language, The Swedish blog team, Vocabulary

As temperatures drop and the cold weather blues set in, Swedes harness “mys.” The Danish and Norwegian “hygge” is not the only Nordic concept used to encapsulate wellbeing and coziness.  The phenomenon of long and cold winters in Scandinavia is nothing new, so instead of letting the lack of sun and cold temperatures get them down, Swedes combat this feeling by mastering mys around their homes, businesses, and town centers. It’s equally about creating a cozy aesthetic, as it is about sculpting a feeling and enjoying the moment.

Two men enjoying a "mysig" fika

Ulf Lundin, “Fika” imagebank.sweden.se

Here are a few ways in which Swedes celebrate mys this time of year and some vocabulary to go with it. But first, let’s break down the grammar of mys in Swedish!

The noun mys, technically, ett mys -> myset, can be added as a suffix to a word that you would like to label as “cozy,” becoming a compound noun. For example:

fredagsmys               Friday coziness
Fredagsmys är bäst med familjen!      “Friday coziness” is best with family! 

höstmys                     fall coziness

julmys                        Christmas coziness

 

Mysa works as a verb, meaning to be cozy, or sometimes to “cuddle”

  att mysa -> myser -> myste -> har myst -> mys!

Jag vill inte gå ut.             Jag vill bara mysa hemma.
I don’t want to go out.      I just want to “be cozy” at home.

 

Then, in adjective form: mysig / mysigt / mysiga,  en / ett / plural forms

Tofflor är så mysiga.         Slippers are so cozy. 

 

 

Advent Star and candles in a Swedish window

Simon Paulin, “Advent Star,” imagebank.sweden.se

Swedes enjoy mysiga moments all year round, but here are some examples that are especially present this time of year:

 

Swedes LOVE lighting candles, putting decorative lamps in their windows, lighting outdoor votives, and twinkle lights, especially as the holiday season approaches. December celebrations like Advent and Lucia are all about finding light and goodness during dark times. So you’ll see electric advent candles and stars hanging in windows all around Sweden.

If you would like to illuminate your home like a Swede, you get extra points if you connect your seasonal lights into timers that automatically come on when the sun goes down.  Smart, va?! Smart, right?!

 

ett ljus – flera ljus            a candle or light – several candles 

en lykta – flera lyktor     a lantern – several lanterns 

att tända                             to light         
    -> tänder -> tände -> har tänt -> tänd!

     -Ska vi tända ett ljus?           -Shall we light a candle?
     -Absolut, jag älskar ljus!
      -Absolutely, I love candles!

Myspys hemma! / Cozy vibes at home! Hunkering down with a warm drink and a good book or film is an extra mysigt fall and winter activity. The hashtag #myspys has around 100,000 tags on Instagram where Swedes share their ideal images of cozy ambience.

att gosa                                    to cuddle          
  -> gosar -> gosade -> gosat -> gosa!

Det regnade igår så katten och jag gosade hela dagen.
It rained yesterday so the cat and I cuddled all day. 

en filt – många filtar            a blanket – many blankets

att fika     to take a break and enjoy a coffee or tea         
   -> fikar -> fikar -> fikade -> har fikat -> fika!

Han brukar fika på eftermiddagen.  He usually “fikas” in the afternoon. 

varma drycker                      warm drinks

Äppelcider med kanel är min favorit varm dryck till hösten!
Apple cider with cinnamon is my favorite warm drink in the fall. 

mörk – mörkt – mörka         dark,  en / ett / plural forms

Kvällarna blir mörka i höst.  The nights become dark in fall.

 

A person hikes in Linsön-Prästön nature reserve

Moa Karlberg, “Autumn Hike,” imagebank.sweden.se 

Although hibernating inside can be super mysigt, Swedes get outside to enjoy nature even when temperatures drop. Bundling up in höstkläder, or fall clothing, and enjoying the fall colors is a mysig pastime of many.

en stickad tröja / tröjor    a knit sweater/s  

en dunjacka / jackor          a down jacket/s

en mössa – mössor              a knit hat – hats

att vandra                             to hike
  –> vandrar -> vandrade -> har vandrat -> vandra!

 
Att vandra i skogen är bäst! 
To hike in the forest is the best!

en höstpromenad – promenader   a fall walk – walks

färgglada löv                                          colorful leaves

Jag älskar höst för att löven är mycket färgglada.
I love fall because the leaves are very colorful. 

krispig -> krispigt -> krispiga         crisp,  en / ett / plural forms

Luften är krispig.   The air is crisp. 

vinröd / vinrött / vinröda                wine red,  en / ett / plural forms

senapsgul /-gult /-gula                      mustard yellow,  en / ett / plural forms


How do you create an atmosphere of “
mys”?  Can you think of a new noun with the suffix –mys? Let’s see your ideas in the comments below!

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About the Author: Chelsea B

Chelsea is a Swedish language instructor and translator living in Minnesota, U.S. She has a degree in Scandinavian Studies from Gustavus Adolphus College and has experience living and working in Sweden from north to south! In her free time, she enjoys cooking, hiking, listening to music, and practicing slöjd, the Swedish word for handcraft.


Comments:

  1. Ryder:

    So nice to see some activity on the blog again! Will certainly be looking forward to more posts.

    • Chelsea B:

      @Ryder Thank for reading 🙂 I’ll be posting weekly so let me know if there are any topics you would like to see!

  2. Par:

    Lovely post!
    Just some small corrections, it’s myste, har myst (not mysade, har mysat). And it’s filtar, not filter.
    Now I’m heading inside for some söndagsmys in the höstrusk!

    • Chelsea B:

      @Par Tack för hjälpen! http://www.tyda.se svek mig with both of those terms! I’ll have to dubbelkolla my vocab elsewhere nästa gång.

  3. Chris:

    Enligt ordboken är ‘att mysa’ ett v2b verb.
    Så varför står det ‘ mysade mysat’ ?


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