Language challenges

At least there is a reason why I don’t have a clue, one of the Finns explained to me today. A professor of Human Geography, he warned that you can’t figure out much without a knowledge of the basic grammar.

Unlike most other languages which developed some sense several thousand years ago (and then there is Estonian and Finnish), there are no articles in Finnish. Rather, all those designations, to include prepositions, some actions and modifiers are provided by one or more of the 32 potential suffixes. That is right my friends, not only do you have to know the root word, you have to hear the rest of the word to figure things out. Even more fun than Russian with six cases. So it is not just an excess of l, j, k, m, n, v along with common t, r, and s. Or the almost never seen d, z, c, q, x, b, c. It explains all those in, en le la. Vowels, I will reassure you, are plentiful and may be used in combination. But there are really an amazing number of ls and ns out there. The grammatical process that causes those incredibly long word is agglutinative morphology.

I think it might be easier to settle for just being an erect (most days) bipedal, plantigrade being with flat nails. I will disagree with the presumption that we are the only species that passes down knowledge along with genetics. (Marine biology anyone?)

I also found yarn. Two stores, Sypressi and the Finnish equivalent of Husfliden. And then there is .

The kids had the camera today. Or not, as it turned out.

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4 Responses to Language challenges

  1. Kristin L says:

    “agglutinative morphology” — now there’s a term you don’t get to use everyday.

    Of course, when my hubby used to drive his 1969 Camaro onto post in Heidelberg the guards would say “there’s something you don’t see every day,” and hubby’s response was always, “Well I do.”

  2. Angeluna says:

    Ummm, I know what you are going through. Finnish is related to Hungarian…Finno-Ugric to be precise. And I studied and spoke Hungarian; all those suffixes. Note the past tense there, it has almost disappeared from my brain, except for tongue twisters and food. And it didn’t help me a bit in Finland, either.

  3. Carmen says:

    This probably means my total Finnish vocab will be stuck at sauna, ufda and shiksa. Just let me say, Welsh is pretty screwy too. I left my flash cards and home, and probably shouldn’t have.

  4. Kathryn says:

    Hey I can count to four in Finnish – and it has to be better than Burmese (my current grouch). Welsh is all right if you understand the mutation process.
    But – trust you to find yarn Holly!

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