1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Finnish
  4. >
  5. "Joki juoksee keskellä Suomea…

"Joki juoksee keskellä Suomea."

Translation:The river runs in the middle of Finland.

July 11, 2020



I think rivers run through somewhere typically? [reported as "something else is wrong"]; I don't know about the virtaa vs juoksee argument :)


It is not correct Finnish to say that "joki juoksee". It may run in English, but it "virtaa" (flows) in Finnish.

[deactivated user]

    I think it might be said that way too (not sure) because e.g. alajuoksu (downstream) and yläjuoksu (upstream) are words that literally mean 'downrun' and 'uprun'.


    Yläjuoksu and alajuoksu are indeed used.

    There is a nuance difference between juosta and virrata. The former puts emphasis on a direction where the river runs to. For instance Tornionjoki juoksee tuntureilta mereen. The Tornio river runs from Lapland's mountains to the sea. The latter puts emphasis on where the river runs or what it runs through. Puolet matkastaan Tornionjoki virtaa Ruotsin ja Suomen rajalla, Half of its way the Tornio river runs between Sweden and Finland.

    [deactivated user]

      A river runs through somewhere, and it should be virtaa in finnish


      A few people have queried this already, but "The river runs through..." is the standard idiom should certainly be accepted. "The river runs in..." Is comprehensible, but sounds unnatural and awkward.


      Is keskellä limited to "in the middle of"? Like others, I had put "through the middle of" and it was marked wrong.


      I am wondering if it is incorrect to translate this as "a river runs in the middle of Finland" ? "A" instead of "The." if someone were unfamiliar with the geography of Finland, and the identity of the river wasn't obvious, wouldn't it also be correct to use "A" instead of "The" ?


      I think I remember reading in one of the comments somewhere that Finnish sentences generally put old information before new information, so subjects at the front are usually going to be translated with "the", since "the" is used with entities that we know of already (old information). For it to be "a", maybe "keskellä Suomea" has to come first, but I'd love to hear a native speaker or mod's input on it :).


      Your memory serves you well :-) That is correct.


      'through' is still not accepted. Why not?


      It doesn't really work with "in the middle of Finland". If you disagree, please read the other comments first. If you still think it should be added, then give as detailed explanation as possible why it should be added. :)


      I thought rivers flow in English...


      Rivers can run too (there's a movie called "A River Runs Through It", for example)


      Rivers do both, and "flow" and "run" are not (quite) synonymous. "Flow" refers to what a river does (in time), but "run" is usually used to speak of the extent of a river (in space). So a river might flow down a mountain into a bay and run from the top of the mountain to the bay. But it also "runs off" into the bay.


      Everyone's talking if it runs or flows, in or through... I'm just here wondering what river I it ^^


      The river runs through the middle of Finland should be accepted. It may not be a direct translation of keskella but it is a much more comprehensible and common form the sentence in (UK at least!) English. I would argue that it shows a better grasp of Finnish as the translator is using idiom to translate the semantics of the sentence rather than being stuck purely at the level of grammar.


      I had "in central Finland" but it was not accepted. Reported as an alternative.


      Central Finland is the English name for the province Keski-Suomi. Take a look at the discussion at another exercixe.


      Kiitos Juha, I'd forgotten that. It does make it ambiguous. Would it be Joki juoksee Keskellä-Suomella ? That doesn't sound right to me though maybe, Keski-Suomella?


      Keski-Suomessa. And I would use virtaa as the verb in that one. :)


      Jep, definitely virtaa. For differences between juosta and virrata, see my comment in this exercise.


      Are- lla/-ssa place dependant endings as in "to somewhere", eg Ouluun vs Saviolle, to name two places I have had connections with?


      You can think of the lla/lta/lle as "by" to make it a bit easier. In Finnish place names, it's usually tied to some place being built next to a lake, a river, a white water, a hill, or some other natural formation. Or as "on", when the place is on an island. Usually you can see a related word in the name (Pyhäjärvi, Matomäki, etc.) but sometimes it's only implied. For instance, Tampere and Vantaa were both named after a white water (Tammerkoski and Vantaankoski): Muutan Vantaalta Tampereelle, "I'm moving from Vantaa to Tampere". Sometimes with smaller places, there's no rhyme and reason in what ending you get. For example, many boroughs in Helsinki defy this rule: Muutan Kulosaaresta Vuosaareen, "I'm moving from Kulosaari to Vuosaari." :)


      'Through' is still not being accepted...


      I've now removed this sentence from the course as too challenging. :)

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