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Useful and cool Swedish words part 1 Posted by on May 15, 2017 in Vocabulary

Last year in 2015 there were approximately 13000 new Swedish words that were registered by SAOL (Svenska Akademins Ordlista) and around 9000 words disappeared from the list. This kind of increase hasn’t happened since the 1950s, wrote Johan Lindquist Göteborgs Posten 2015. See the article here in Swedish: link

In this blog post I have collected a good selection of new and useful slang words and words that are very common and popular nowadays. They can be quite unique and sometimes you need some more information on Swedish culture to understand them.

en mambo: a person who is way over 18 years old and still lives at home

en galopp: a small beer in a wine glas (mainly used in Gothenburg)

plankar: to travel without a valid ticket on tram/bus/subway

obror: to be unfriendly

pappaledig: paternity leave

lattemamma/lattepappa: a person who goes often to have a coffee while the kids sitting at the table and not doing so much instead of being out in the park or at the playground.

curlingföräldrar: parents who help their kids too much with every step in life

partysvensk: Swedish young people who work mostly in Norway or Mallorca and spend their money on spot buying the most expensive things, drinking a lot of alcohol and party day-in day-out.

en torsk: a client who buys sex from a prostitute

vabbar: Coming from Vård av barn which means care of children. It refers to that every Swedish parents have a certain amount of days to stay at home from work and still get paid in case their children get sick.

ett lågvattenmärke: really bad quality or absolutely bad level of performance

ett gubbdagis: Places that interest mainly men and where wives can leave their husbands like Clas Ohlson.

en springnota: Leaving a pub or restaurant without paying the bill.

en a-lagare aka en räv: an alcoholic person

vaskar: When rich people ask the waiter/waitress to pour out a bottle of champagne into the sink so they can show off to their friends that they actually can afford it. This crazy tradition comes probably from Stureplan-area Stockholm where rich kids aka. brats go out. It used to be a habit to pop the champagne bottles and spray everyone around you with the champagne but it led to that the interior got ruined in many places so this new way of celebrating/showing off spread instead among nouveau-rich people.



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  1. Farnoosh:

    Could you please give us some example sentences for these words? 🙂 Really cool post!

    • Tibor:

      @Farnoosh Hi! I will try to make a post in June about it because this will be a serie in whole May. Until then you could google them in different contexts and articles written by Swedes or Swedish journalists. 🙂

  2. Emy:

    The part of speech for the different words can be divided like this:

    All the words ending with -ar are all verbs.

    The words preceded by en or ett are nouns.

    And the rest are adjectives.

    Maybe this can be of any help to better grasp how they can be used in a sentence, until Tibor has had the time to write a post about it.

    Best regards