Appendix:Finnish inflection

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Noun cases[edit]

All nouns, adjectives (including different degrees of comparison), pronouns, numerals and participles can be inflected using noun cases.

Main cases[edit]

Nominative[edit]

Nominative is the base form. It is used in the subject: auto ajaa sillalla: a car drives on the bridge.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
auto car n/a autot cars -t

Genitive[edit]

Genitive indicates ownership: auton rengas: car's tire. Do not confuse with genitive-accusative.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
auton car's, of car -n autojen cars', of cars -jen, -iden, -itten, -ien, -ain

Partitive[edit]

Partitive describes the object of (unfinished) action.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autoa -a, -tta autoja -ja, -ia, -ita

Examples:

  • pesin/olin pesemässä autoa, kun puhelin soi: I was cleaning the car, when the phone rang
  • söin leipää: I ate (some) bread (cf. accusative söin leivät: I ate the breads)

Accusative[edit]

Accusative describes the object of finished action. There are two singular forms, one that is identical to nominative and one that is similar to genitive. Accusative plural is identical to nominative plural.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
auto, auton n/a, -n autot -t

Examples:

  • pesin eilen auton: I washed the car yesterday
  • pese auto!: wash the car!

Locational cases[edit]

These cases describes location. Some of the cases have additional, non-trivial functions.

Inessive[edit]

Corresponds the English prepositions in, within.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autossa in car -ssa autoissa in cars -issa

Examples:

  • istun autossa: I sit in the car

Note:

  • maassa: on, within the ground (cf. adessive maalla: in the countryside)
  • suomessa on viisitoista sijamuotoa: Finnish has fifteen noun cases (more literally: there are fifteen noun cases in Finnish)

Elative[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition from (within).

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autosta from inside of car -sta autoista from inside of cars -ista

Examples:

Note:

  • keskustella, puhua + elative: to talk, discuss about

Illative[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition into.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autoon into car -Vn autoihin into cars -ihin, -isiin

Examples:

Adessive[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition on. Adessive has another, a very important meaning: since Finnish lacks a verb corresponding "have", ownership is indicated with adessive + olla (to be): autolla on uudet renkaat: the car has new tires.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autolla on car -lla autoilla on cars -illa

Examples:

Ablative[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition from.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autolta from car -lta autoilta from cars -ilta

Examples:

Note:

  • tulin matkoilta: I came from a trip
  • kello kuudelta: at six o'clock

Allative[edit]

Corresponds the English prepositions to, onto.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autolle to car -lle autoille to cars -ille

Examples:

  • kissa hyppäsi pöydälle: a cat jumped on the table

TBD[edit]

These cases indicate being or becoming.

Essive[edit]

Corresponds the English prepositions as.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autona as a car -na autoina as cars -ina

Examples:

Note:

  • iltana: at this evening/night

Translative[edit]

Translative describes becoming to something.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autoksi -ksi autoiksi -iksi

Examples:

  • hän tuli hulluksi: he became mad
  • luulin sinua varkaaksi: I thought you were a thief
  • kirja käännettiin englanniksi: the book was translated into English

Rare cases[edit]

These cases are encountered less frequently, especially in the colloquial language.

w:Instructive case[edit]

There is no singular form, except for jalka : footjalan : by foot.

plural suffixes
autoin -in

Examples:

Abessive[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition without.

singular suffixes plural suffixes
autotta without car -tta autoitta without cars -itta

Examples:

Comitative[edit]

Corresponds the English preposition with. No singular form is used, and a possessive suffix is added to the inflected from except for the adjective describing the word: haukkuvine koirineen: with barking dog(s).

plural suffixes
autoineni with my car(s) -ine-
autoinesi with your (sg.) car(s)
autoineen with his/her/its car(s)
autoinensa
autoinemme with our car(s)
autoinenne with your (pl.) car(s)
autoineen with their car(s)
autoinensa

Examples:

Adverbial cases[edit]

Only a small number words, mostly pronouns, inflect in adverbial cases. As the name suggests, the inflected words are adverbs.

Superessive[edit]

Delative[edit]

Sublative[edit]

Lative[edit]

Temporal[edit]

Causative[edit]

Multiplicative[edit]

Distributive[edit]

Temporal distributive[edit]

Prolative[edit]

Situative[edit]

Oppositive[edit]