Monthly Archives: August 2015

One stem to rule them all ( yksi)

Yksi is the number one. Many words, especially particle words, are derived from this word.

Yksin means alone and yksinäisyys means solitude or loneliness. Individuals, = “yksilö”, are often alone. If you are alone, then you have lot’s of privacy = “yksityisyys“.

But on the contrary “yhdessä” (= “in one” or “as one”)  means “together”. If you are together with a person, he’s probably your friend = ystävä

If you share something together, it’s one common thing. That’s why common = yhteinen (not to confuse with “common” as “ordinary”).

“Individualisti arvostaa yksilöllisyyttä ja yksityisyyttä enemmän kuin yhteisöllisyyttä ja yhteisiä asioita.”
“An individualist values individuality and privacy more than community and shared things.”

Couple of mates (pari)

Pari means “a pair” or “a couple”. Illalla juon pari olutta. / I’ll drink couple of beers in the evening.
Also when you talk about human relationships, = “parisuhde”, you talk about couples, = “pariskunta”. “Pekka ja Minna ovat olleet pariskunta jo 10 vuotta. Heillä on kestävä parisuhde.” Pekka and Minna have been a couple already 10 years. They have a strong relationship.

Animals don’t have relationships, but they mate. To mate is “paritella”. “Nisäkkäät parittelevat usein keväällä.” / “Mammals mate often in spring time.”

Does accountant lower or count your salary? (laskea)

Laskea has many meanings related to going down, for example “to lower, decrease, slide, fall…“, for example “lapset laskevat kelkalla mäkeä = children slide downhill with a sled”. That’s very concrete example, a bit more abstract is Palkat laskivat vuonna 2014 / The salaries decreased in 2014. .

Another meaning for “laskea” is to “count” or “calculate”. “Laske yhdestä sataan / count from one to hundred”. That’s why accountant is palkanlaskija (“salary calculator”), because he calculates your salary (sometimes he might also lower it).

Lasku = bill / invoice, because all the costs are calculated in it. It can also mean “a landing” or “a downfall”.

Taking out and seducing (“viedä”)

Viedä = to take. In Finnish this word has a bit more limited meaning than in English. Normally it means to take something away or one place to another. For example “Matti vie roskat ulos ” / “Matti is taking out the trash”.

But if you want to say for example “Please, take some more cake.”, you would use verb “ottaa”: “Ole hyvä, ota lisää kakkua.”. “Ottaa” means “to take to oneself”.

“Viedä” has many other uses, for example “Rosvo vei rahani” / “The thief took my money”. (Note the past tense.) Of course, you can also use “ottaa” here: “Rosvo otti rahani” / “The thief took my money (to himself)”.

In economy, export is taking products abroad, that’s why export = “vienti” (the opposite, import, is “tuonti“).

A slope can lead you down =”viettää“. If your life is going down, you might end in the gutter = viemäri. On the positive side, “viettää aikaa” = “to past time”, or “viettää juhlaa” = “to celebrate”.

Seduction is one form of “taking”, so that’s why it’s “viettely” in Finnish. And if somebody can seduce you she must be seductive, charming or attractive = “viehättävä“. And if you think about it, seduction is one form of luring, that’s why “lure” in fishing is called “viehe“.

A cunnning person might misuse one’s personal abilities, such as charm. That’s why cunning = “viekas” (such as cunning fox = “viekas kettu“).

Viekas poika vei viehättävän tytön ulos viettämään aikaa ja vietteli hänet. /
A boy took an attractive girl out to spend some time and seduced her.