Norwegian word of the day: Innlevelse 

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
Norwegian word of the day: Innlevelse 
Caption Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Unsplash / Nicolas Raymond/FlickR

If you are really putting your soul into a performance, then our latest Norwegian word of the day should spring to mind. 


What does innlevelse mean? 

Innlevelse is a compound of the two Norwegian words inn and leve. Inn (as you have probably guessed) means in, and leve meaning living. 

Put together, they directly translate to 'living into'. The word doesn't really have a direct English translation, as living into something means putting one's soul into something to bring it to life. 

For example, it would be high praise to say an actor is living into their latest role, or a singer is doing the same with their voice. 


However, this isn't the only instance. Away from the performing arts, you could be said to be 'living into' a book when reading to children. This can be done by reading with emphasis or giving the characters their own unique voices to capture the child's imagination and bring the story to life. 

It can also apply to speeches when the orator in question is doing a good job of conveying the importance of their message to the audience. 

Living into can be swapped out for other words like "passionately" or "emphatically". 

Use it like this: 

Jeg så musikalen Matilda på Folketeateret i går. Skuespillerne hadde en helt fantastisk innlevelse. 

I saw Matilda the Musical at the Folketheatre yesterday. The actors had an amazing scene presence (innlevelse). 

Talen ble gitt med stor innlevelse.

The speech was given with great passion / innlevelse. 

Hun danser med en utrolig innlevelse.

She dances with an amazing passion/ innlevelse.

Jenta framførte teksten med stor innlevelse.

The girl performed the text with great passion/ innlevelse.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also