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Classroom:NTNU, LING 1113 (2009) - Norwegian Prepositions

This page should be seen in connection with the pages: Classroom:NTNU,_LING_1113_(2009)_-_Norwegian_Verbs_of_Motion and Classroom:NTNU,_LING1113_(2009)_-_Motion_and_Space




Suzann Pettersen gikk lørdagens runde ett slag under par og er på delt 7.-plass tre slag bak lederne i LPGA-turneringen.

In this case, the located object is "Suzann Pettersen's score", and the reference object is "lederne i LPGA-turneringen's score". bak is not only used in positioning objects but also in ranking them.

Vi tror at Taliban i Pakistan står bak angrepet på politiskolen i Lahore i dag, sier landets innenriksminister.

In this case, the located object is "Taliban i Pakistan", and the reference object is "Angrepet på politiskolen". In this case, the posteriority is to be understood in a more abstract sense as neither the organization itself (though its members may be) nor the attack (though its consequences may be) are instances in space. Bak when used together with 'stå' introduces causality. stå bak means 'to cause' without that the causer can directly be linked to the event caused.


An example of the use of "blant" is "Blant bøkene lå en avis" meaning "Among the books lied a news paper". Here the located object is the news paper and the reference object is the books. The relation is that of being in the intermediate range of other objects. Another examples is the phrase 'blandt sine egne', which means to be among ones likeminded - and expresses a slightly more abstract notion, since Figure and Ground need not to occur in the same location but rather entertain multiple relations in a social space.

hos This preposition somehow marks that the located object is in the nearby the reference object. You could for example say "Jenta bor hos sin far", which would mean "the girl lives with her father".


'i' indicates that the figure has a relationship of interiority to the ground.


'Mot' indicates that the Figure has a relationship of coincidence to the Ground.

"Jenta lener seg mot veggen" is an example, meaning "the girl leans against the wall". Here the located object is "jenta" and the reference object is "veggen". The located object is in a relation of coincidence and laterality to the reference object. This is the meaning of "mot" where the located rests against the reference object. Another meaning of "mot" is that the located object is moving towards the reference object. So here we have motion towards a goal. An example could be "gutten løper mot parken", which means "the boy runs towards the park".

innenfor "Innenfor" is another Norwegian preposition signaling interiority. Here the reference object is an enclosed space, and the located object is interior to the reference object. An example might be "Butikkene er innenfor det sentrale byområdet", which means "the shops are inside the central city area". Here the located object "butikkene" and the reference object "det sentrale byområdet", are in a relationship of interiority with each other. It is a physically enclosed location here, namely the city area.


The figure is coinciding with the ground, and has a relationship of laterality to it


The figure has a relationship of laterality to two grounds, who do not have a relationship of laterality to each other


The figure has a relationship of exteriority to the ground.

ovenfor The preposition ovenfor is used to indicate that the relation between the figure and the ground is one of superiority, but not of coincidence.

In simpler terms: Object1 is ovenfor another object if it is located over that object - that is higher than it and in the space above it - but not if Object1 is touching the other object.


The figure and ground are anterior to each other

'På' has a basic meaning which means that the figure is superior to, as well as coinciding with, the ground. However, many other uses of the preposition 'på' are in use in Norwegian today.


The figure has a relationship of exteriority to the ground.


'Under' indicates that the figure has a relationship of inferiority to the ground.

Directional preposition

Directional prepositions combine with verbs and encode direction and additional information to complement the events taking place


Fra encodes the source of a movement, or origin of an entity.


This expression encodes a path from one end of the ground to another.


Encodes the goal of a path that is being accomplished.

Turene har start i Kristiansand eller Oslo med buss til Polen, Tyskland eller Frankrike via Danmark eller Sverige.

Ja til ekteskapet - mellom mann og kvinne

An example could be "jenta går til sentrum av byen", meaning "the girl walks towards the city centre". Here the located object is "jenta" and the reference object is "byen".