Thursday, October 21

Update your Swedish reflexive pronouns and verbs

To understand reflective verbs, start by thinking of activities in which the action is reflected in your topic. For example, “I’ll be good.” “He will shave himself,” and so on. In Swedish we pair even more verbs with a reflexive pronoun – the verb “learn” is reflexive, “concentrate” is also reflexive! In this post, we will review the use of reflexive pronouns and cover 11 Swedish reflexive verbs with examples. Don’t skimp on this grammatical concept! I find that most Swedish students make mistakes when using these verbs.

Svenska Reflexive Pronouns / Swedish Reflexive Pronouns

English uses myself, yourself, yourself, yourself, etc. to denote that a subject is performing an action alone. “I’ll wash myself.” versus “I’ll wash it.”

In Swedish, we also use a reflexive pronoun to make this distinction. Fortunately, we don’t have to learn a completely new set of pronouns because they are the same as Swedish object pronouns.

subject pronoun object pronoun reflexive pronoun


I myself




han / hon / hen

S.I.G himself / himself
that that S.I.G



U.S Ourselves


it is


from S.I.G


Svenska reflexive verb / Swedish reflexive verbs

Learn is the verb for “learn” in Swedish. It is made up of the verb learn and a reflexive pronoun. I am learning finnish translates to “I’m learning Finnish”. When using the verb, select the object pronoun that corresponds to the subject. See the table above for help!

He is learning Finnish. He is learning Finnish.
We learn Finnish. We are learning Finnish.

Now, I want to make the distinction that just because learn Just because it’s thoughtful in Swedish doesn’t mean we translate it as “I’m learning Finnish myself”, because that sounds silly, right?

If you are teaching Finnish yourself, you should add the emphasis word oneself to this sentence, I teach myself swedish, “I’m teaching myself Swedish.”

Again, reflective actions are divided differently in many European languages, so they can be especially difficult for native English speakers.

11 Swedish reflexive verbs and their conjugations

Below I will provide an example of a verb, its conjugations, and an example sentence. We’ll cover the question form and how to deny it using reflexives too! Where is the no go, you ask? Let’s find out!

learn learn
learn → learned → I have learned

He learned how to bake sourdough bread during the pandemic.
He learned how to bake sourdough bread during the pandemic.

get vaccinated get vaccinated
get vaccinated → get vaccinated → get vaccinated

People get vaccinated to avoid covid-19.
People get vaccinated to avoid getting sick with Covid-19.

to concentrate to concentrate
concentrates → concentrated → has been concentrated

* Denial alert! No goes after the verb and the reflexive pronoun

The children concentrated no in the master.
The children did not focus on the teacher.

hurry up hurry up
hurry → hurried → has rushed

You have to hurry! Otherwise you will miss the train!
We must hurry! Otherwise, you will miss the train.

to regret to regret
regrets → regretted → regretted

*As a question:
Does she regret it?
Does she regret it?

wear dress
dress → dress → has dressed

Young people are dressing like the 90s again.
Young people are dressing like the 90s again.

Feel Feel
feel → feel → have felt

They feel tired after a long day of hiking in Norrbotten.
They feel tired after a long day of hiking in Norrbotten.

to import to import
cares → cares → cares

* Question form Y negative:

Do you mind? Do you mind?
-No, I do not care. -Do. I do not mind.

going to bed going to bed
goes to bed → went to bed (they) went to bed

-Should we watch another episode? – Shall we go one more episode?
-No, I’m going to bed. -No, I’m going to bed.

get marry to marry
marry → marry → have married

We married?
We married?

There you go! A thoughtful refreshment. I recommend spending more time on these highlights than you think you need. In everyday use, you should think about the proper conjugation of your verb AND about assigning the correct reflexive pronoun. The more practice the better!

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