One of the fun things about learning a foreign language are the words that are rude, or funny in your own language.
Swedish has a few of them: slut, kräpp, plopp, kock, spurt
But the funniest one is probably the most purile; it is the ever prevailing ‘fart’, especially when you see it on street signs. This is the word that has most visitors to Sweden holding their sides with laughter.
Even after all these years, I can still have a little giggle when I think about the word ‘fart’ and its various usages in Swedish. In Swedish, ‘fart’ can mean a lot of things such as speed, drive, route, pace, spirit, vivacity, rate. But it is when it is put together with another word that it becomes amusing. Childish, I know…but here we go…
- utfart – ‘out fart’ – exit from a building
- uppfart – ‘up fart’ – driveway
- infart – ‘in fart’ (sounds painful) – entrance
- avfart – ‘of fart’ – exit from a motorway
- framfart – ‘forward fart’ (quite an accomplishment) – progress
- fartkamera – ‘fart camera’ (didn’t know these existed) – speed camera
- kringfart – ‘circular fart’ (also sounds painful) – causeway
- fartfylld -‘full of fart’ (know a few people like that) – speedy
- krypfart – ‘crawl fart’ – crawl
- luftfart – ‘air fart’ (the worst) – air travel
- fartrand – ‘fart stripe’ – go faster stripe on a car
- maxfart -‘maximum fart’ – top speed
- farthållare – ‘fart holder’ (dangerous) – cruise control
- blixtfart – ‘flash fart’ – flash speed
- fjärrfart -‘distant fart’ – transocean traffic
- halvfart – ‘half fart’ – half speed
- snigelfart – ‘snail fart’ – snail speed
- förbifart – ‘passing fart’ – ring road
- fartgräns – ‘fart limit’ – speed limit
- marschfart – ‘marching fart’ (like a hit and run!) – cruise speed
- överljudsfart – ‘supersonic fart’ (impressive!) – supersonic speed
- fartblind – ‘fart blind’ (although deaf is probably preferable) – when you become desensitised to the speed you are driving and stop noticing it
4 thoughts on “Swedish farts”
I will now very Swedishly ruin the jocular atmosphere and point out that some of these translations were incorrect.
luftfart – Air travel or air traffic (as a concept, not as an action). Air speed is Kurshastighet.
fartrand – “Go faster stripe” on race cars (and cars that desperately want to be race cars). Skid mark is Bromsspår.
farthållare – Cruise control (something that holds your speed) Speedometer is Hastighetsmätare.
Although I understand the anglophone merriment, it’s not *that* weird. The word fart is derived from “fara”, to travel. And you have this word in English (maybe one of the leftovers from the Danish or Norwegian invasions? (please don’t judge us by the despicable behaviour of our less fortunate Nordic brethren)), in “fare well” (travel well), “sea-faring” (travelling by sea) and, of course “fare”, the money you pay to travel. I also suspect that the nautical “fairway” (the navigable part of a body of water) is derived from the same word, as the Swedish term is “färled” (“led” meaning “path”).
Discovered your blog today, will definitely return. Or as we (used to) say, “återfart”.
Thanks! I will update with the right translations. Must have had a brain fart!
How about överljudsfart and fartblind? 😄
What about speed bumps….hinder fart. !!