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"Professor, is this Finnish or Estonian?"

Translation:Professori, onko tämä suomea vai viroa?

July 12, 2020



Why do we use the partitive here (Suomea)?


Because it logically can't be about the entirety of those langauges. It's only some Finnish and some Estonian, so it's partial and therefore partitive case is required.


So essentially the sentence means "is this some [i.e. a sample of] finnish or some estonian" rather than "is this the finnish language or the estonian language"?


Opettaja tai Professori? What is the difference? I liked to say opettaja...


Opettaja = teacher, professori = professor. Each one can be the other at the same time, but being a teacher doesn't necessarily induce being a professor.


Question, can finnish and estonian also be described as suomalainen and virolainen to display a cultural item/habit, like in a 'suomalainen herkku'? Or is the case wrong for that here? Thanks!


Yes, "suomea" and "viroa" are only about the languages. They are nouns (in singular partitive). If, however, you want to use adjectives to specify origin, then you use "suomalainen" and "virolainen", e.g. "suomalainen herkku".


Could this not also be translated to "Professori, onko tämä suomalainen vai virolainen"?

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