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10 regional Danish words that will make you sound like a local

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10 regional Danish words that will make you sound like a local
What's a pot called in South Jutland? Photo: thierrydu47/Depositphotos"

Want to add a bit of local flavour to your Danish and impress the natives? Here are 10 words from regional dialects that you may not have heard before.


1. Træls

Starting with a classic, træls is a multipurpose word that is heard all over Jutland, but possibly has its roots in the north.

Meaning: inconvenient, annoying, a nuisance

2. Mølle

It might mean ‘mill’ everywhere else in the country, but on Funen, ‘mølle’ is a synonym for ‘numse’, or bottom.

Photo: Claus Fisker/Ritzau Scanpix

3. Klotte

Most frequently heard on southern island Langeland and also on Funen, the verb ‘at klotte’ means to mess something up or be clumsy with something.

4. Bette

An affectionate diminutive term used in most parts of Jutland. Can be applied to both people and things, for example: 'Vil du have en bette mad?' means 'Would you like a little something to eat?', while 'Han er bare en bette dreng' means 'He's just a little boy'


5. Mojn

An almost ubiquitous greeting in South Jutland, and interestingly also in the northern German province of Schleswig-Holstein and even in Hamburg.

It can be interchanged with the way ‘hej’ is used in other parts of Denmark, which means you can say ‘mojn’ for ‘hello and ‘mojn mojn’ for goodbye.


A post shared by Christer Holte | Esbjerg, DK (@christerholte) on Mar 27, 2015 at 9:56am PDT

6. Jylkat

Jylkat is a word native to Bornholm, the Danish island in the Baltic Sea between Sweden and Poland. It means hedgehog, but the second half of the word (-kat) actually means cat, giving this word a hint of animal humour.

7. Snupdug

This Jutland word, means tissue, can be broken down into the verb ‘at snuppe’ (to grab or grasp) and ‘dug’, which can mean both ‘dew’ or ‘tablecloth’. We’re unsure which of the two gives’ snupdug its etymological roots.

8. Sule

We love this verb, which is of Funen (Funensk?) origin and means ‘to be washed in the face with snow’.

Photo: alexeys/Depositphotos

9. Bom

Bom, pronounced with extra emphasis on the ‘o’ means candy, liquorice, wine gums – it’s a bit of a catch-all for sweet-toothed South Jutlanders.

10. Pot

Pot should be an easy one to remember for English speakers: it means ‘pot’ (the kitchen utensil). The standard Danish word is gryde.

Did we leave out any good Danish regional words? Do you disagree with any of our descriptions or definitions? Let us know – we’d love to hear your input.

READ ALSO: Seven Danish words that are tough to translate into English


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