Wiktionary talk:About Estonian

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How do I add a superlative with the et-adj template? — Jeraphine Gryphon 18:00, 27 December 2011 (UTC)

It can't be added yet. Do adjectives that have a superlative with kõige also always have another form? —CodeCat 18:52, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
I don't know right know. But I know that superlatives for vana are both vanim and "kõige vanem". — Jeraphine Gryphon 18:54, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Um... Yes it can. I put comparatives and superlatives in when I rewrote the old template.
That gives you the ilusam and kõige ilusam. If there's another superlative you use s2=[Ric Laurent] — 18:58, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Thank you. :) Is the second superlative always formed by adding -im to the genitive? Can you check to make sure that applies to all adjectives? —CodeCat 19:03, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
That works, thanks. — Jeraphine Gryphon 19:04, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
No idea. — [Ric Laurent] — 19:04, 27 December 2011 (UTC)


"Determiners" aren't a separate class of words, I don't think they should be presented as if they are. — Jeraphine Gryphon 18:07, 27 December 2011 (UTC)

Why do you say that? —CodeCat 18:53, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Do we actually have any determiners? If we do, don't they already belong to an actual class of words, like adverbs or something else? I don't understand what the point of this is. — Jeraphine Gryphon 18:59, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Determiners are similar to adjectives, because they modify nouns. But instead of describing the noun, they specify it by saying which noun, how many of the noun, and so on. —CodeCat 19:01, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Are you saying it's a word class separate from pronouns, adpositions, adverbs and so on? — Jeraphine Gryphon 19:06, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
Because if it's separate then I'm sure we don't have any determiners at all; but if it overlaps with pronouns or adpositions then it'd be redundant to add in the word definitions. — Jeraphine Gryphon 19:09, 27 December 2011 (UTC)
They would not overlap with adpositions, but they may overlap with pronouns and adjectives. The dividing line between adjectives and determiners isn't always clear, and many pronouns are also determiners. For example, the English words that, all, both, which, each are both determiners and pronouns: you can say 'that thing' but also 'what is that?', and the same for the others. —CodeCat 19:22, 27 December 2011 (UTC)


Is there a declension template to use on pronouns? — Jeraphine Gryphon 22:27, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

You could use {{et-decl}}, which would mean having to fill in all the forms by hand. But I think if the pronouns are irregular there isn't really much else to do. Do you think it would make sense to make a template that's only used for a handful of words? —CodeCat 22:30, 30 December 2011 (UTC)


I'm putting those back under a single heading, unless someone creates a third etymology to explain words like jääk and söök. Objections? — Jeraphine Gryphon 22:30, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

They have different etymologies so they shouldn't be merged. I've created a third etymology section now, although I'm not sure if jääk didn't originally belong to the same group as sõiduk. I noticed that all the 'anomalous' words with -gi instead of -ki have short stems with only a long vowel, and I think this might have caused the k to shorten at one time in the past. —CodeCat 22:35, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
And I think Wiktionary should have a policy about original research. — Jeraphine Gryphon 22:38, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
I really think you should discuss that in a more public place if it concerns you so much... but please also read WT:WINW. —CodeCat 22:40, 30 December 2011 (UTC)
 ? That didn't tell me anything new. — Jeraphine Gryphon 22:47, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Representing overlong syllables and palatalization[edit]

@Hekaheka, Tropylium The normative Õigekeelsussõnaraamat dictionary (yes I know that's double RAS syndrome) writes overlong syllables with a ` and indicates palatalization of a preceding consonant with '. This is not part of normal written Estonian, but I do think that these should be indicated. Especially in inflection tables, such information would be very important because it would show alternations that are currently invisible.

So I wonder how we should represent this. We can use the standard feature of our modules to remove or replace specific characters, so that we can link to, say, k`eel but have the link point to keel automatically. But I foresee some problems with denoting palatalization with ' because it's conceivable that this character may be used in "real" cases, as an actual apostrophe. We could use some alternative apostrophe-like character, or we could use the combined characters ľ, and ť (with haček) and ń and ś (with acute accent), which look somewhat similar.

What should we do here? —CodeCat 23:36, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

My first reaction is that it would probably confuse more than clarify. The long syllables are already indicated with double vowel and the use of additional signs would create confusion of correct spelling. I don't know Õigekeelsussõnaraamat, but they may not have a separate section for pronunciation. We do. --Hekaheka (talk) 01:28, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I think you're confusing short vs. long vowels with long vs. overlong vowels. Estonian has three lengths, not two, but only the short vs. long distinction is indicated in the spelling. For example, there is a real difference between linna (town, genitive singular) and linna (town, partitive singular): the former has a regular long syllable while the latter has an overlong syllable (l`inna). This example also shows that the length is important in inflection tables because the pattern of long vs. overlong is inherently a part of the inflection types and can be different for different words. —CodeCat 02:04, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Sounds regardless like an issue for the pronunciation section. There is no reason these couldn't be added for inflected forms too. True, this won't then show up in a standard inflection table, but features like illative singular > overlong grade are fairly consistent across inflection types. An inflection table with pronunciation separately indicated where unpredictable could however also be designed. --Tropylium (talk) 15:45, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
But at the same time, we do indicate other pronunciation details when the standard spelling doesn't indicate it. We indicate stress and tone for many Slavic languages for example, while for Greek and Latin we indicate vowel length, and for Arabic and Hebrew we indicate the vowels themselves. So there is plenty of precedent for adding pronunciation details. —CodeCat 17:54, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I have always found it confusing that Greek, Latin etc. entries carry these spelling indications. There's no way how an occasional non-speaker visitor would know which punctuation mark is there for pronunciation and which is for writing. We have to choose between two evils and take the lesser one. Further, the difference between long and overlong appears to be a slight one as my previous comment indirectly reveals. I have visited Estonia probably 50 times for up to 10 days at a time and this discussion is the first time I ever became aware of this difference. --Hekaheka (talk) 01:43, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
That you as a Finnish speaker didn't notice is not so surprising. Many people, when they hear another language, are not sensitive to distinctions that their own language does not have. Many people are not aware of the distinction in aspiration that some languages have, or the two different types of "s" in Basque, just to name some examples. But the difference is real and has been documented and researched quite a lot, so its existence as such is not really up for discussion. In any case, for now I've limited it to only the inflection tables, because for those the distinction is just as important as consonant gradation is. I'm not happy with how the ` looks myself, so I'm wondering what representation can be used that is less intrusive. Maybe macrons like in Latin. (And if you really find Latin macrons confusing, please bring it up on the Beer Parlour. Maybe there are others who think so too.) —CodeCat 02:00, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
Not related to Estonian but if long and overlong vowel distinction is important, even in declension tables, why is Russian palatalising and non-palatalising distinction of Cyrillic "е" after consonants is not? The former is transliterated as "e", the latter as "ɛ". Published dictionaries don't transliterate Russian at all but some sources provide respelling for the latter as "[э]". Compare бре́мя (brémja) and бренд (brɛnd), phonetic respelling: "брэнд". Symbol "ɛ" is not perfect, since it's not a Latin letter but some languages use non-Roman letters for transliterations as well. Lack of palatalisation in Russian words with "е" is completely unpredictable, so it's a benefit to users, only native speakers or advanced learners know how to pronounce those words. (BTW, I have no objection in providing additional info for Estonian). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 02:47, 8 December 2014 (UTC)