Icelandic Grammar

Welcome to the 8th lesson about Icelandic grammar. We will first learn about prepositions, negation, questions, adverbs, and pronouns including: personal, object and possessive pronouns.

We will start with prepositions. In general, they are used to link words to other words. For example: I speak Icelandic and English the preposition is [and] because it connects both words Icelandic and English. The following is a list of the most used prepositions in Icelandic.

Prepositions
Icelandic
and
og Audio
above
yfir Audio
under
undir Audio
before
áður en Audio
after
eftir Audio
in front of
fyrir framan Audio
behind
á bak við Audio
far from
fjarri Audio
near
nálægt Audio
in
í Audio
inside
inni í Audio
outside
úti Audio
with
með Audio
without
án Audio
about
um Audio
between
á milli Audio
but
en Audio
for
fyrir Audio
from
frá Audio
to
til Audio

Preposition Grammar Rules

The following examples use prepositions in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence.

Prepositions + Rules
Icelandic
I eat without a knife
[preposition + noun]
ég borða án hnífs Audio
she lives near the church
[verb + preposition]
hún býr nálægt kirkjunni Audio
he is taller than her
[adjective + preposition]
hann er hærri en hún Audio
he came with his small dog
[preposition + pronoun]
hann kom með litla hundinn sinn Audio
can you come with me?
[preposition + pronoun]
getur þú komið með mér? Audio

Negation in Icelandic

Now let's learn how to make a negative sentence (negation). For example: Saying no, I can't, I don't ... The following examples use negation in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence.

Negation + Rules
Icelandic
I understand you
[affirmative form]
ég skil þig Audio
I don't understand you
[negation + verb]
ég skil þig ekki Audio
this is not the correct word
[negation + adjective]
þetta er ekki rétta orðið Audio
don't leave me
[imperative negation]
ekki fara frá mér Audio
no problem
[negation + noun]
ekkert vandamál Audio

Negative Sentences
Icelandic
I don't speak French
[negation + present tense]
ég tala ekki frönsku Audio
she didn't visit Germany
[negation + past tense]
hún heimsótti ekki þýskaland Audio
he cannot see us
[negative modal verb]
hann getur ekki séð okkur Audio
can't she play chess?
[interrogative negation]
getur hún ekki spilað skák? Audio
we will not come late
[negation + future tense]
við munum ekki koma of seint Audio

Questions in Icelandic

Now let's learn how to ask questions (interrogative). Such as: what, why, can you ...? Here are some common examples:

English
Icelandic
how?
hvernig? Audio
what?
hvað? Audio
who?
hver? Audio
why?
hvers vegna? Audio
where?
hvar? Audio

More of the interrogative form, now in a sentence:

Questions + Rules
Icelandic
where do you live?
[interrogative + verb]
hvar áttu heima? Audio
does she speak Chinese?
[interrogative verb]
talar hún kínversku? Audio
how much is this?
[interrogative preposition]
hversu mikið er þetta? Audio
can I help you?
[interrogative modal verb]
get ég hjálpað þér? Audio
what is your name?
[interrogative preposition]
hvað heitir þú? Audio

Adverbs in Icelandic

It's time to learn the adverbs in Icelandic. But what is an adverb? In general, adverbs modify verbs and adjectives. For example: You speak fast. The adverb is [fast] because it describes the verb and answers the question how do you speak?. Here is a list of the most common ones:

Adverbs
Icelandic
now
núna Audio
yesterday
í gær Audio
today
í dag Audio
tonight
í kvöld Audio
tomorrow
á morgun Audio
soon
bráðum Audio
quickly
fljótt Audio
slowly
hægt Audio
together
saman Audio
very
mjög Audio
almost
næstum Audio
always
alltaf Audio
usually
venjulega Audio
sometimes
stundum Audio
rarely
sjaldan Audio
never
aldrei Audio

The following examples use the adverbs in different ways and places to demonstrate how it behaves in a sentence.

Adverbs + Rules
Icelandic
do you understand me now?
[pronoun + adverb]
skilur þú mig núna? Audio
I need help immediately
[noun + adverb]
ég þarf hjálp strax Audio
she is very intelligent
[adverb + adjective]
hún er mjög greind Audio
I will always love you
[verb + adverb]
ég mun alltaf elska þig Audio
can we learn German together?
[adverb in a question]
getum við lært þýsku saman? Audio

Pronouns in Icelandic

We're almost done! This time we will learn the pronouns in Icelandic. In general, a pronoun can be used instead of a noun. For example instead of saying my teacher speaks 3 languages, you can use the pronoun he, and say he speaks 3 languages. Here is a list of the most common ones:

Personal Pronouns
Icelandic
I
ég Audio
you
þú Audio
he
hann Audio
she
hún Audio
we
við Audio
they
þeir/þær/þau Audio

Object Pronouns
Icelandic
me
mig Audio
you
þig Audio
him
hann/honum Audio
her
hana/henni Audio
us
okkur Audio
them
þá/þær/þau Audio

Possessive Pronouns
Icelandic
my
minn/mín/mitt Audio
your
þinn/þín/þitt Audio
his
hans Audio
her
hennar Audio
our
okkar Audio
their
þeirra Audio

I think it's better to put the above example in a sentence to better assist you. The following examples use pronouns in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence. We will start with the personal pronouns.

Personal Pronouns
Icelandic
I am your friend
[1st pronoun + verb]
ég er vinur þinn Audio
you speak very fast
[2nd pronoun + adverb]
þú talar mjög hratt Audio
he has three dogs
[3rd pronoun + verb]
hann á þrjá hunda Audio
she can speak German
[3rd pronoun + verb]
hún getur talað þýsku Audio
we will not come late
[1st plural pronoun]
við munum ekki koma of seint Audio
they bought milk and bread
[3rd plural pronoun]
þeir keyptu mjólk og brauð Audio

The object pronoun is used as a target by a verb, and usually come after that verb. For example: I gave him my book. The object pronoun here is him. Here are more examples:

Object Pronouns
Icelandic
can you tell me your name?
[1st object pronoun]
getur þú sagt mér nafnið þitt? Audio
I will give you money
[2nd object pronoun]
ég mun gefa þér peninga Audio
she wrote him a letter
[3rd object pronoun]
hún skrifaði honum bréf Audio
they visited her yesterday
[3rd object pronoun]
þeir heimsóttu hana í gær Audio
can she help us?
[1st pl. object pronoun]
getur hún hjálpað okkur? Audio
he gave them food
[3rd pl. object pronoun]
hann gaf þeim mat Audio

Possessive Pronouns
Icelandic
my name is Maya
[1st possessive pronoun]
ég heiti maya Audio
your brother lives here
[2nd possessive pronoun]
bróðir þinn býr hér Audio
her mother cooks for us
[3rd possessive pronoun]
móðir hans eldar fyrir okkur Audio
his hobby is reading books
[3rd possessive pronoun]
áhugamál hans er að lesa bækur Audio
our dream is to visit Paris
[1st pl. possessive pronoun]
draumur okkar er að heimsækja parís Audio
their house is not far
[3rd pl. possessive pronoun]
húsið þeirra er ekki langt í burtu Audio

One more thing you need to know is the demonstrative pronouns. They're very easy to learn.

Demonstrative Pronouns
Icelandic
this is my house
þetta er mitt hús Audio
that restaurant is far
þetta veitingahús er langt í burtu Audio
these apples are delicious
þessi epli eru ljúffeng Audio
those stars are shiny
þessar stjörnur eru skærar Audio

I hope you learned a lot about the Icelandic grammar in this lesson. If you have any question about this lesson please contact me here. The next lesson is below, have fun!

Icelandic Phrases   Icelandic Phrases

Icelandic Vocabulary   Icelandic Vocabulary



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Inspirational Quote: First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. Epictetus