1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Finnish
  4. >
  5. "Tämä on sauna, herra Pöllöne…

"Tämä on sauna, herra Pöllönen."

Translation:This is a sauna, Mr. Pöllönen.

June 24, 2020



I imagine that "herra" is of Germanic origin.


You are right. "Rouva" is also of Germanic origin, Frau in German and fru in Swedish. Finnish (and other Finno-Ugric languages) does not like consonant clusters in the beginning of the word, and therefore it is not always easy to recognize such loan words where the first letter is "lacking". I live in Rauma (South West Finland), and in the old local dialect "rouva" is "frou".

There were no "herra" or "rouva" in Finland, before we got civilization from the Swedes, therefore words like these are borrowed from our western neighbors.


Actually there were no "herra" or "rouva" anywhere, at least the way we understand these terms nowadays. Thousand years ago, in Germanic languages, these terms would have meant something like "mistress/master of a household" or "powerful woman/man". And Finnish did have native words for these kind of terms: "isäntä ("master")" and "emäntä" ("mistress"). In fact similar word exist in every Finnic language (including Estonian: "isand" & "emand"), so they are very old and go back to the Proto-Finnic era.
Terms like "fru" and "herre" in the North-Germanic languages are also loanwords (from Old Saxon), so I guess they also didn't have any kind of "civilization" before they borrowed those words.


Thank you so much for the information!


Hello! Would "This is the sauna" be okay too?


Hmm, yes, I guess. If you were showing your house to Mr. Pöllönen and telling him what room has which function, you could translate "tämä on sauna" as "this is the sauna".

In spoken Finnish specifically people often use "se" to indicate definiteness. You could say "Tämä on se sauna, josta puhuimme" (This is the sauna we talked about) when entering a famous public sauna your friend has never been to, for instance.


Okay, thanks for the answer, little chili pepper :)


Came here with the same question.


"This is the sauna" actually makes more sense. "The sauna" would be used when, for example, showing Mr. Pöllönen around your house. The indefinite article ("a sauna") would be used when explaining to him what a sauna is. I highly doubt that you would ever have to explain to a Finn what a sauna is ;)


Interesting to see that "This is a sauna, Mr Little Owl" is cheerfully accepted too.


The ending -nen makes it "small version of the big one". Also Leipänen = small bread (even though that's not used much)


Can't this be "this is the sauna" as well as "a sauna"?


Didnt accept "this is sauna(.....)" as a right answer. When sauna is a Finnish word im used to saying it in English without "a /the" like many Finns


"This is sauna" is not a meaningful English sentence (neither is "they are sleeping in city").


I lived in Finland 10+ years....i think its a "Finnishism" thats rubbed off on me as Finns will say "let's go to sauna " or "this is sauna" without the a/the before it when speaking English. The more languages you know the less languages you can speak perfectly. My english has definitely suffered from 10 years of speaking Finnish


Would you capitalize "herra" in that sentence? Curious.


No, titles are not capitalized in Finnish.


Thanks. 14 years of German makes me want to capitalize everything. :)


I wanted to make a joke about capitalism here but i decided not to


Only if you were referring to the Abrahamic deity, where it would mean Lord. One of Finland's most beloved Christmas songs ends with "Kunnia Herran, maassa nyt rauha, kun Jeesus meille armon toi." Even though most Finns no longer celebrate Christmas religiously.


I would rather learn how to say "the sauna is here/over there". I don't see a need to explain that something is a sauna, Finns would probably spot a sauna from any distance


The sauna is here = sauna on täällä

The sauna is over there = sauna on tuolla


Such a wonderful accent. I could listen to her speak this this phrase all day.


How do you know when is it "the" or "a"?


It is mostly inferred from the context. In this sentence there is not enough info so it could be both.


How can Mr. Pöllönen don't know if that is a sauna ?


It is bit difficult for me to type in Finnish as I don't have the Finnish keyboard. How can I get one?


If you are using a phone you should be able to go to your settings (languages, keyboard), and just download a new language to be used alongside the one(s) you already have on your phone.

I do believe "ä" and "ö" have been requested by the mods to be added to the course quite a while ago, but for some reason they haven't shown up yet.


How to pronounce Pöllönen it sound like in german ö = u, Pullunen or Pollonen, I hope somebody replies to me.


Ö u and o are all said with round lips, but they are not the same sounds in Finnish. The only letters that are pronounced the same are o and å. I think the best way to learn the sounds is listening to native speakers. Try to look up Finnish letters on youtube or forvo.


Why is audio missing here?


just a small thing but it keeps telling me to pay attention to the accents but the letters with accents are not available to use!


You may find this forum post helpful. See the main post for assistance with computer keyboard input, and the top comment there for assistance with mobile input.



hello i always forgetting a


i don't think there is any need for "a" if you showing something to someone.


I wrote "this is sauna, Mr Pöllönen" and it was wrong... I was think they were sitting in a sauna and just "this is sauna"... like this a real sauna

Learn Finnish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.