Swedish Language Blog

Swedish Synonyms Posted by on Nov 8, 2010 in Grammar, Swedish Language

Synonyms are words grouped by the similarity of meaning. The meaning is not identical but of adjacent use.  Synonyms aren´t each other´s counterparts but are rather nuanced variants with slightly different meanings depending on the context. They are useful to emphasize what we want to say; also you can use them when making sarcastic and ironic comments.

Synonyms for “man” :

old-fashioned: herre, karl, pojken min        everyday language: kille,  pojke          slang: gubbe, snubbe,

  • `Farmor och vår Herre` är en riktigt bra bok av Hjalmar Söderberg. (Grandma and our Lord is a really good book by Hjalmar Söderberg.)
  • Herrtoaletten finns bredvid damernas toalett. (The gents ´toilet is next to the ladies ´toilet.)
  • Herr Augustsson har skadat sin arm. (Mr. Augustsson has injured his arm.)


  •   Han har vuxit sig till en stor och stark karl. (He has grown to be a big and strong fellow.)
  • Min karl jobbar som socionom. (My guy is working as a social worker.)
  • Han arebtar som en hel karl. (He works like a man.)


  • Jag såg henne men sin nya kille i lördags. (I saw her with her new guy/boyfriend last saturday.)
  • Lyssna här killar och tjejer! (Listen boys and girls!)
  • Det är populärt att kalla en man för en kille oavsett ålder. (It is popular to call a man for a guy regardless age.)


  • Hennes pojkvän har varit otrogen flera gånger, men ingen pratar om det. (Her boyfriend has been unfaithful several times, but no one talks about it.)
  • Min pojke är 4 år gammal och är rädd för allt, sa mamman. (My boy is 4 years old and afraid of everything, said the mother.)
  • Pojken min, sätt dig bredvid morfar! (My baby boy, sit down next to grandpa!) *When you are very fond of someone. This is a very loving expression.


  • Kom och lek här i vardagsrummet lilla gubben! ( Come and play here in the living room sweetheart!) *When you are very fond of someone. This is a loving way of saying it. The expression is also diminutive. 
  • Jag älskar dig gubben. (I love you honey.) *When you are very fond of someone. (male) This is a loving way of saying it. The expression is also diminutive. 
  • Den gamla gubben var väldigt otrevlig. (The old man was really unpleasant.)


  • Snubben trodde att han var cool för han hade en pistol”. (This guy/dude thought he was cool ´cause he had a gun.) lyrics by Dogge Doggelito.
  • Det kom fram en snubbe som jag inte kände igen. (This dude came up to me but I didn´t recognize him.)
  • “Hon frågar efter sponsor men snackar med fel snubbe..haha flickorna på TV2, hey yo men det var då…” (She asks for a sponsor but talking to the wrong bloke/guy..haha gilrs on TV2, hey yo!… but it was then….) lyrics by Tripple Ett Hip-Hop group
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  1. Shannon:

    Fantastic! Please may we have more synonyms.

  2. Tibor:

    Thanks Shannon, it is actually on the way (in the coming days)!