PerksOfAWallflower

language nerds !!!!

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Yeah, the double vowel thing is pretty much as you reasoned it - they're just longer. It's the same as it is in Swedish, just "simplified". Just like in "sol" the o is long and in "blomma" it's shorter, in Finnish you just spell it out by writing the long vowel sounds with two letters. You don't have to think about whether there are one or two consonants after the vowel sound or anythinng like that, you just immediately see if it's long or short. Of course if you're Swedish you don't have to think about pronunciation, you just know, but as a non-native speaker it can be troublesome. In Finnish the vowel sounds always correspond to the letters the same way. Ä is always ä, whereas you guys can say it like in the word där, which sounds like the Finnish ä, or like in "främmande" which to me sounds like "fremmande". So you could say that Finnish is a little more straightforward that way!

Hehe, I get so excited explaining this stuff it's kind of embarrasing! Maybe I should ditch music and just study linguistics or something... Big Grin Yay for languages! "Four" is spelled "neljä", six is kuusi and seven is seitsemän, all the others are correct. Well done! Big Grin

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Hivää huomenta rainna!

I have so many things to say.. I don't know how to start. Big Grin

quote:
I love learning foreign languages, but I always get super excited when someone wants to know something about Finnish language. Explaining it to others forces you to look at your mother tongue in a whole new way and I love it.

Yes, that's so true!

I love learning foreign languages because you understand that there are no rules. I mean.. the rules exist but they can be so different between languages, everything is subjective!

I also love onomatopoeia. It's very funny because they are different between languages. For example, in English a dog does 'wouf wouf' but in French it does 'ouaf ouaf'. We interpret sounds in a different way!

quote:
When I was in Scotland visiting a friend, we made Finnish cinnamon rolls and the tried to teach people how to say their name, 'korvapuusti', and it was so much fun!

korvapuusti.. I love cinnamon, I will try! Are they popular in Finland?

By the way, I always laugh when people say my name in English. They don't pronounce the 'r' like I do and it's like they were saying 'Djodan' instead of 'Jordane'. Big Grin

quote:
Finnish is basically pronounced as it's written. The letters always sound the same, no matter the context (with very few exceptions). Quite unlike English - and French where it feels like you say about 50% of the letters.

In English, people say about 50% of the letters. I'm agree. But in French.. Really? Smiler

*10 seconds later*

.. Oh my.. You are right! For example, if I say 'Je sais' ('I know' in English), I don't pronounce the last 's'! When French is your first language you don't have to think about it..

--------

Now I would like to talk about your language. Smiler

I love Finnish language. This is a very intriguing language to me. It could very well be due to the fact that it reminds me my trip to Norway 4 years ago. I don't know if Finland and Norway can be compared but Finnish language reminds me the epic landscapes and the fairy tales of Norway!

First, you said that Finnish is pronounced as it's written and that the vowel sounds always correspond to the letters the same way.

I read that a, o, u and ä, ö, y never occur together but i and e can mix with any other. (so.. 'Hivää huomenta' is not correct?)

Could you try to explain the pronunciation of äi for example? I mean.. Are the vowels pronounced individually?

Also, you said 'I'm from France' would be 'Olen kotoisin Ranskasta'. This is really fascinating! Many languages use prepositions (from, for,..) but in Finnish they come after the main word. You don't use prepositions but.. postpositions!

I've tried to learn some characteristics of the Finnish language and I've found some funny things. An example: The negative sentences! (sorry if I do mistakes)

Minä olen ranskaleinen = I am French

Minä en ole englantilainen = I am not English

The ending of the verb comes in front of the verb and leaves it alone without any ending. That's so funny. Smiler

AH. Stop me! My post is too long.. Anteeksi! Wink

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Bonsoir! Je trouve que c'est très chouette que tu t'intéresses de mon langue. J'essayerai l'expliquer ainsi que je peux.

(Oh dear, it has been such a long time since I have written anything in French... I even had to consult Google Translate, and that seldom ends well!)

In my opinion, korvapuustis (the Finnish plural form would be "korvapuustit") are very tasty and worth trying. They are a very traditional treat in Finland and you can get them in almost every café. I guess Swedes are even more fanatic about their cinnamon rolls, though. They're pretty much the same stuff as korvapuustit.

English-speaking people don't pronounce my name right, either, partly because of the 'r'. 'Riikka' also has all those double letters in it, which make it even harder. I'm sort of freaking out about how I'll cope in Ireland next year if no one will be able to pronounce, spell or remember my name. Finnish 'r' is sort of a "rolling" r, not throaty like in French or... well, almost non-existent as in English. Some people with strong Scottish accent use that kind of 'r' and I think it sounds very nice.

You guys just add all those letters at end of the word and then you don't even bother to say them! Big Grin Granted, it makes speaking French a little easier, since you don't have to worry so much about getting all the endings right. For instance, you write 'viennent' but only say 'vienn'. 'Langue' sounds like 'lang' (well, not exactly, but close enough). What a waste of perfectly good letters! Big Grin

I think our culture has a lot in common with Norwegian culture, but the languages are not related. Norwegian, Swedish, Danish and Islandic all belong to the same Scandinavian family of languages, but Finnish doesn't. What we speak here is part of the Finno-Ugric group of languages. Finnish has a lot in common with Estonian, for example.

The pricipal about different vowels not going together is called vowel harmony. A, o and u are back vowels and y, ä and ö are front vowels, and you can't put back vowels and front vowels in the same word... Unless of course it's a compound word! Big Grin I and e are sort of in between - they can go together with anything. So linguistically, you could say 'Hivää huomenta', but the correct spelling is 'Hyvää huomenta'. For example:

pöytä (=a table) - front vowels only

auto (=a car) - back vowels only

sievä (=pretty) - i, e and front vowel

vaimea (=muffled) - i, e and back vowel

pöytäliina (=tablecloth) - compund word, all kinds of vowels

I'm not sure if I can explain how to say 'äi', but I will try! In diphthongs you say the vowels sort of seprately, not like in French where for example 'ue' is a singular sound. If I try to think this through French, the 'ä' sounds kind of like the 'ai' in 'le main' and 'i' sounds like 'y' (as in 'il y a'). And then you just say them, first ä and then i. It sound difficult, written out like that, but really, it's not. Smiler

We are very fond of our postpositions here, there are hardly any prepositions. All the grammatical cases (...not sure if a proper word here...) are done with postpositions:

in the book = kirjassa

from the book = kirjasta

to the book = kirjaan

etc.

quote:
Minä olen ranskaleinen = I am French

Minä en ole englantilainen = I am not English

Those 'en's don't really have much to do with each other, confusingly enough! It's a coincidence that has to do with the personal conjugation of the verbs.

I am = minä olen

you are = sinä olet

he/she is = hän on

we are = me olemme

you are = te olette

they are = he ovat

And then the negative conjugation:

I am not = minä en ole

you are not = sinä et ole

he/she is not = hän ei ole

we are not = me emme ole

you are not = te ette ole

they are not = he eivät ole

So when you use the verb in a negative sentence, it's not the verb that conjugates but the negative. Finnish verbs are enough to give anyone a headache... Big Grin

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quote:
Originally posted by rainna:

Yeah, the double vowel thing is pretty much as you reasoned it - they're just longer. It's the same as it is in Swedish, just "simplified". Just like in "sol" the o is long and in "blomma" it's shorter, in Finnish you just spell it out by writing the long vowel sounds with two letters. You don't have to think about whether there are one or two consonants after the vowel sound or anythinng like that, you just immediately see if it's long or short. Of course if you're Swedish you don't have to think about pronunciation, you just know, but as a non-native speaker it can be troublesome. In Finnish the vowel sounds always correspond to the letters the same way. Ä is always ä, whereas you guys can say it like in the word där, which sounds like the Finnish ä, or like in "främmande" which to me sounds like "fremmande". So you could say that Finnish is a little more straightforward that way!

Yeah. Okay. I don't know if it's more straightforward though, but it's another method. You still have to look at the next letter to know if it's long or short. "Is it another u or just one?" In Swedish it's "Is it a double consonant?" :P But I see what you mean. The double vowel is a cluster, you don't look a them individually, but you don't with the double consonants in "blomma" either. Actually...I don't know if this is correct but I wouldn't say that the "ä"-sound in "främmande" is the same as in "hemma". Oh, I don't know. I'm sitting here pronouncing it loudly to myself and I can't really tell. Maybe it's just the accentuation that is different. It's a very important part of Swedish.

quote:
six is kuusi

Does that mean that your "u" is pronounced like our "o"? Or I might have just learned it wrong. I thought that all our vowels sounded the same.

Sorry for butting in in your discussion. But kaoir! Did you actually not know that you don't pronounce all your letters? I find that quite funny Wink it's the first thing they told us when I started taking French class. It's also because many vowels can mean only one sounde. Like... beaucoup for example. With Swedish writing it just sounds like bo-ko. Sort of. And "maintenant". If it was a Swedish word we would say Ma-y-n-té-na-n-t and you just say "mänt(ö)na". I find that you almost never pronounce the last or the last couple of letters; chat, chien, vache, demande, lire, vraiment, ville, pas, près... There's a reason they're there of course, otherwise it would be pronounced differently but you don't hear them. Oh and your mute "h" is really interesting too. "Hôpital", "heureux".

If you're interested (I hope you don't find me annoying now. I just oike discussing language and mine is the reference I have) a Swedish dog sounds "vov vov" or "voff voff". And did you know a pig says "nöff nöff" which sounds exactly like neuf=nine in French? That was very funny when I was eleven...

Riikka! I really like your name! What's the difference in pronounciation between Riika and Riikka? In Swedish it would be a shorter vowel with two consonants but you've got two "i"s. How does that work out?

Yeah cinnamon rolls (kanelbullar) are standard here. If a café doesn't have them it's not a café.

Is Finnish, Estonian and Hungarian as alike as Swedish, Danish and Norwegian? I mean, I can read both Danish and Norwegian without even having to learn. It just looks like Swedish misspelled. When it comes to listening Norwegian is easier and in writing Danish is.

quote:
I am = minä olen

you are = sinä olet

he/she is = hän on

we are = me olemme

you are = te olette

they are = he ovat

And then the negative conjugation:

I am not = minä en ole

you are not = sinä et ole

he/she is not = hän ei ole

we are not = me emme ole

you are not = te ette ole

they are not = he eivät ole

This looks so complicated. And French was also hard to learn, je suis tu as il/elle/on a and so on... Wanna know the best part about Swedish? We don't conjugate the verb depending on who we're talking about. The present form of "to be" is "är". So in Swedish it's:

Jag är

Du är

Han/hon/den/det är

Vi är

Ni är

De är

and in negative (I am not) it's just:

Jag är inte

Du är inte

Han/hon/den/det är inte

Vi är inte

Ni är inte

De är inte

Like in English. Just add "not".

Like I said. Sorry for interrupting you and talking about me, I'm just interested and always feel like sharing when it comes to this... It's so cool that we three speak three so different languages and are discussing i in English.

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quote:
Originally posted by sweetness in my

Is Finnish, Estonian and Hungarian as alike as Swedish, Danish and Norwegian? I mean, I can read both Danish and Norwegian without even having to learn. It just looks like Swedish misspelled. When it comes to listening Norwegian is easier and in writing Danish is.

Sorry for butting in but this caught my eye and I decided to research that. Apparently no mutual intelligibility is present. Even though some words or even sentences look similar speakers of either languages are unable to decode them properly...which led me to a question of the different degrees of mutual intelligibility between languages. I started with Slavic languages as I am a speaker of one. I came across a statement that speaker of any Slavic language can understand at least 60% of what a speaker of another Slavic language says...I would just like to clarify that - NOT true, I cannot understand what Regina says in Russian. I catch individual words but not the general meaning (not to mention the whole Cyrillic thing in writing which I am unable to read). If you took a Czech child who never heard anything but Czech it would be able to understand Slovak (90-95%) but nothing else. Mutual intelligibility of Czech/Slovak and Polish is a myth as most of the older generation would say they understand perfectly which is a result of them watching Polish TV in the past (Polish TV was kinda progressive and stuff so everybody here watched it but they don't now). Nowadays the younger generation including me does not understand a Polish person. Like, we might eventually get the general meaning but it would be mostly through gestures...and hours of simplifying words and looking for a common synonym.

Anyway, sorry for digressing. The discussion reminded me of a joke we have around here - making fun of Hungarian saying that it's hopeless trying to understand the language since not even "telephone" is called a "telephone". And turns out it's not true: there is a word for telephone that is similar to "telephone" in Hungarian but not in Finnish, I guess I need to start the echo that the joke needs to be changed.)

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kaoir thats so cool that your from the south of france! my mother is from the south of france, marseille to be exact.

regarding french i can understand it, speak and read it grand but my written grammar is terrible just like english haha.

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I find that very interesting, Appt! Actually I was trying to read some Norwegian today since there's news about Breivik. And I understood most of it, but there were two words I didn't know so the whole meaning of the message got lost. I knew all the words in between but the key words were lost so...yey me.

But you know, I've only been studying French but I find myself understanding small bits of Spanish and Italian. Especially in writing.

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rainna : Your French is good! And.. You said "chouette"! I love that word! It's not very common nowadays and I'm always happy when people use it. Smiler

Thanks for all these informations, it was really interesting!

I have tried to say 'äi' but I have the impression to sound like a donkey: äi äi äi äi. Ahem. Sorry. xD

Also, I've tried to pronounce your name 'Riikka' but don't be afraid, I think I pronounce it pretty well! Wink

quote:
So when you use the verb in a negative sentence, it's not the verb that conjugates but the negative. Finnish verbs are enough to give anyone a headache... Big Grin

Yes. I'm sorry but I think I will stop learning Finnish language and try to learn Swedish. It seems much less complicated. (I'm just kidding Razzer)

sweetness in my lungs: Don't be sorry! The more we are, the funnier it is! Smiler

quote:
I find that you almost never pronounce the last or the last couple of letters; chat, chien, vache, demande, lire, vraiment, ville, pas, près... There's a reason they're there of course, otherwise it would be pronounced differently but you don't hear them.

vache, demande, lire, ville.. I pronounce every letters when I say these words! No? (don't make fun of me Razzer)

quote:
did you know a pig says "nöff nöff" which sounds exactly like neuf=nine in French? That was very funny when I was eleven...

I don't want to seem pretentious but I think your pigs have a real problem. Here in France they say "groin groin" and a pig saying "nöff nöff" is definitely not a good sign.

I am quite worried.. What do your chickens say? I hope they say "cocorico".

Dominic: Your mother comes from Marseille? That's so cool! I live in Montpellier, maybe she knows where it is!

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quote:
Originally posted by kaoir:

quote:
I find that you almost never pronounce the last or the last couple of letters; chat, chien, vache, demande, lire, vraiment, ville, pas, près... There's a reason they're there of course, otherwise it would be pronounced differently but you don't hear them.

vache, demande, lire, ville.. I pronounce every letters when I say these words! No? (don't make fun of me Razzer)

What about the last e? :P In swedish it would be heard like you say the first e in "escalier". Your "e" sounds like our "ö" when said alone. And you don't pronounce it vach-ö or vill-ö, do you? I suppose that could be a dialectal thing though. Like (ne me) quitte (pas mon cher) Wink I have learned to leave the last "e" mute when in a sentence.

quote:
quote:
did you know a pig says "nöff nöff" which sounds exactly like neuf=nine in French? That was very funny when I was eleven...

quote:
I don't want to seem pretentious but I think your pigs have a real problem. Here in France they say "groin groin" and a pig saying "nöff nöff" is definitely not a good sign.

I am quite worried.. What do your chickens say? I hope they say "cocorico".

Haha! Groin? Meaning also "crotch" in English?

We know they don't sound "nöff nöff" but that's what you say. They don't say "groin" either. It's rather like an inhale when you have a cold, no? Wink How to spell that? Hhhrrccrruuooohhhfvf. Hehe. If you say neufneufneuf many times kinda far back in your throat and fast, doesn't it sound a little bit like a pig searching for food in the mud...? Maybe if you inhale at the same time? Wink Ah I would love to hear this. Or if someone could hear me right now.

A Swedish chicken would say nothing in particular now when I think about it. A rooster says "kuckeliku". But of course it sounds more like uuuh-uuuh-uh-uh-uuuuhh when you try hearing it. Haha. This has turned into a funny discussion.

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quote:
Does that mean that your "u" is pronounced like our "o"? Or I might have just learned it wrong. I thought that all our vowels sounded the same.

Yep, that's exactly the case! Your 'o' is very similar to our 'u', whereas your 'u' sound doesn't really exist in Finnish. To us it sounds like a cross between 'u' and 'y'. And our 'o' is basically your 'å'. And since the letter 'å' doesn't exist in the Finnish system, you actually have one more vowel than we do!

quote:
Riikka! I really like your name! What's the difference in pronounciation between Riika and Riikka? In Swedish it would be a shorter vowel with two consonants but you've got two "i"s. How does that work out?

Hmmm, how do I explain this... First of all, thanks for liking it! Big Grin And I think I just figured out how it would work out in Swedish! You actually do have a word that sounds like Riikka, and that would be 'rika' (plural form of 'rik' which would mean 'rich', if I remember right?). Cause even though you only spell it with one 'k', the k sound in there is longer than a singular 'k' would be in Finnish. I'm not sure why that is... And also you would have to take the stress off the syllable 'ka', since in Finnish the stress is always(?) on the first syllable of the word. (In case there in fact is any stress in the 'ka' of 'rika'. To me it sounds like there is some, but I could just be saying it wrong...)

The relationships between Fenno-Ugric languages I think are not quite as close as those between Scandinavian or Romance languages. Many Fenno-Ugric langauges are also so tiny that you don't really come across them. Estonian and Carelian are probably those quite close to Finnish, and if I see a simple, Estonian text, I'll probably be able to figure out what the text is about and even be able to translate some of the sentences, but nothing more profound than that. Hungarian is so distant that I can't understand a word. I've witnessed people from different Scandinavian countries talk with each other, each speaking in their own language and still understanding what the others are saying. For us, it doesn't really work that way.

quote:
Your French is good! And.. You said "chouette"! I love that word! It's not very common nowadays and I'm always happy when people use it. Smiler

Haha, I've learnt the word 'chouette' like... more than ten years ago when I first started studying French, so I guess it could be a bit old-fashioned. It was the name of out textbook series and I loved - and still love - how 'chouette' as an adjective means nice and 'une chouette' is an owl! Owls are nice! Big Grin

quote:
Also, I've tried to pronounce your name 'Riikka' but don't be afraid, I think I pronounce it pretty well!

Wow, that guy makes it sound a little... aggressive, or something. Big Grin But all the sounds are right, so I'm not complaining. What a great website!

quote:
Yes. I'm sorry but I think I will stop learning Finnish language and try to learn Swedish. It seems much less complicated. (I'm just kidding Razzer )

I think Swedish is probably the easiest langauge I've studied. I don't speak it well since I've never really used it the way I use English all the time, but grammatically it is a language that to me makes sense, in a way. There are things that are difficult and very annoying, but all in all I think Swedish is quite pleasant to learn. BUT there are things that speak for Finnish as well! For instance, our nouns don't have genders or articles or anything. And, compared to French, our third person pronouns are gender neutral, so you don't have to worry about conjugating adjectives according to gender, either.

Okay, I simply can't end this post without giving my input to the animal sound conversation... Big Grin Finnish pigs say "röh röh". I think that's a fair compromise between "nöff" and "groin". And our roosters say "kukkokiekuu". I think it has something to do with the actual sound, but "kukko kiekuu" actually means "a rooster crows". That's kind of weird.

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