Norwegian word of the day: Kompis

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

Knowing this crucial word is a sure sign that you are on the way to making friends in Norway.


What does it mean? 

Kompis is one way to say friend in Norwegian and is a more casual or informal alternative to venn

The plural is kompisar, and you can have lots of different kompis: an arbeidskompis (work friend) or a skolekompis (a friend from school). Given how easy it is to make compound words in Norwegian, you can apply the word friend to pretty much any situation. 

As we've mentioned, it's slightly more informal, so it could be similar to mate or buddy in English. In a similar vein to buddy, kompis has enjoyed some popularity as a dog name. 

The term isn't gendered. However, a kompis does typically refer to a male friend. The female equivalent is vennine

With vennine, it would maybe be more out of place to call a male friend this than it would be to call a female friend a kompis


Furthermore, you wouldn't call your dog vennine in the same way you would kompis

Kompis is Latin in origin, and you'll see similarities with many words for "friend" across Europe: compa in Spanish, copain in French, and Kumpel in German.


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