Swedish Language Blog

Expressions with animals Posted by on Dec 4, 2017 in Swedish Language

I won’t try to find an equivalent to all these in English language but I think many of these expressions are very close to the Swedish ones. Your homework will be to translate these because the list is long. Here is some help because my colleague already made a post like this earlier with idiomatic translations. So you guys can compare it with how Swedes think about attributes and characteristics compared to English speakers.


  • Arg som ett bi (Angry as a bee)
  • Dum som en gås (Stupid as a goose)
  • Envis som en åsna (Stubborn as a donkey)
  • Fattig som en kyrkråtta (Poor as church rat)
  • Flitig som en myra (Studious as an ant)
  • Fri som en fågel (Free as a bird)
  • From som ett lamm (Meek as a lamb)
  • Full som ett svin (Drunk as a pig)
  • Glad som en lärka (Happy as a lark)
  • Hal som en ål (Slippery as an eel)
  • Hungrig som en varg (Hungry as a wolf)
  • Klok som en uggla (Wise as an owl)
  • Listig/Slug som en räv (Sly as fox)
  • Modig som ett lejon (Brave as a lion)
  • Rädd som en hare (Afraid as a hare)
  • Smidig som en katt (Smooth as a cat)
  • Smutsig som en gris (Dirty as a pig)
  • Stark som en oxe (Strong as an ox)
  • Stolt som en tupp (Proud as a cock/rooster)
  • Tjock som en gris (Fat as a pig)
  • Tyst som en mus (Silent as a mouse)
  • Virrig som en höna (Confused as a chicken)



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  1. abdelwahab:

    Please,I love Swedish for anytime before, so i want to a pursuance my studies are there,and thanks.

  2. Eric:

    Tyst som en mus – silent as a mouse, not silent as a mouth!

  3. Eric:

    Tyst som en mus – ‘silent as a mouse’, not ‘silent as a mouth’ LOL, (mouths can be quite loud)

  4. Lara:

    Love this!
    But one thing… silent as a *mouse*

  5. Carina:

    Great list, but please consider correcting tyst som en mus = silent as a mouse (not mouth), and stolt som en tupp = proud as a rooster (for American English speakers : )

    • Tibor:

      @Carina Thanks for seeing the error