Monthly Archives: March 2013

Visit there by walking (“käydä”)

Käydä is an old fashioned word for “to walk”. More common way to say “to walk” is “kävellä” (which is of course derived from the earlier verb). Käydä is still in use in some special meanings, where the idea is more like “to visit a place”. For example: käydä kaupassa / do the shopping, käydä lääkärissä / to see the doctor (in Finnish it’s just enough to see him).

In English “engine runs”, but in Finnish it “walks”, so moottori käy tasaisesti / engine runs smoothly. Also beer and wine “walk” when it ferments, so “hyvä viini käy vuosia / good wine ferments for years”.

If you want to say, that something is ok, you can say “it walks”, “se käy“. Other possibility is to say “se sopii“, “it fits”. Both are standard Finnish, not slang.

Give me a hand, handyman (“Käsi”)

Käsi is also an important bodypart, like head. It’s used in many idioms and other words are derived from it.
In English you have an adjective “handy”, in Finnish it’s “kätevä“. The verb has similar idea: “to handle” is “käsitellä”. Also, you want to keep handy things close to you, in other words “at hand”. In Finnish it’s “käsillä”.

Käsittää means “to understand”, but in a bit more specialized meaning than “ymmärtää”.

Käsite is a thing you understand, so it means “a concept”. For example “Inflaatio on tärkeä käsite taloustieteessä” / “Inflation is an important concept in economy”. Don’t mix it with “käsitys“, which means “an impression”, for example “Minulla on huono käsitys hänestä” / I have a bad impression about him”.