Norwegian expression of the day: Å bruke svenskeknappen 

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
Norwegian expression of the day: Å bruke svenskeknappen 
If you're having computer issues, you might want to press the computer button. Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Unsplash / Nicolas Raymond/FlickR

If your phone, tablet or computer is giving you trouble, it may be worth doing what Norwegians refer to as “pressing the Swedish button". 


What does it mean? 

Directly translated, it means pressing the Swedish button on a device. Now obviously, you may have noticed that there aren’t any devices that have a button with a small Swedish flag on them. However, if you have ever seen such a gadget, we are certainly impressed. 

It actually means that when you are having trouble with a device, you should use the tried and tested troubleshooting method of turning it on and off again. 

Therefore, if somebody suggests pushing the Swedish button, then you should try hitting the power button to get things working again. 


Why do I need to know this? 

As fun as it is to learn a bit of slang, this expression can also offer a cultural insight into what Norway and its neighbours think of one another. 

The saying, meant and used in jest, is an example of the many jokes the Scandinavian countries share about one another and how these jibes make their way into everyday language. 

An example from Danish would be mullets being referred to as svenskerhår

Below you can see a map of which countries other European countries reportedly joke about the most. 

Use it like this

Har du prøvd å trykke på svenskeknappen?

(Have you tried pushing the Swedish button?)

PCen min hang seg opp helt, så jeg måtte trykke på svenskeknappen for å få den til å virke.

(My computer completely froze, so I had to push the Swedish button to get it to work) 


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