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Finnish Verbs

Building up a strong vocabulary will only get you so far when learning the Finnish Language. In order to put vocabulary words into action and to express yourself more clearly in Finnish, it is important that students of the language make a concerted effort to learn Finnish Verbs.

Most teaching materials designed for non-native speakers will divide verbs in Finnish into six major groups. While all six groups contain verbs with the same set of verb endings, the stems of verbs within each group will be slightly different depending on inflection.

To give you an example of one group of verbs, consider Type I verbs. Type I Finnish Verbs is a large group of verbs. The infinitive form of these verbs is defined by ending in a vowel plus “a.” A vowel plus “ä” is used for verb stems with a front vowel. For example, “to speak” is a type 1 verb that would be written as “puhua.” The infinitive form of “to read” is written as “lukea.”

In the Finnish Language, there are three basic verb forms that will need to be memorized. These include the infinitive form, the 1st person singular present form, and the 3rd person plural present form. Finnish Verbs also decline according to four tenses: the present tense, past tense, perfect tense, and past perfect tense.

In addition, verbs in Finnish have four moods: the indicative, the conditional, the imperative, and the potential. The indicative mood can be used with any one of the four tenses. The imperative can only be used with the present tense. The potential and the conditional can be used with the present and past tenses.

The six personal endings for Finnish Verbs are:

• 1st person singular: -n

• 1st person plural: -mme

• 2nd person singular: -t

• 2nd person plural: -tte

• 3rd person singular: -V or -ø

• 3rd person plural: -vat or -vät

When learning verbs in Finnish, it is also important to understand how to create a negative verb. A negative Finnish verb is conjugated according to personal forms and moods. For example, the present tense of “to leave” is lähden in Finnish. To say “I do not leave,” the negative verb is en lähde. Keep in mind that the indicative, potential, and conditional moods use different personal endings than the imperative mood when creating negative verbs. Gaining a better understanding of verbs and negative verbs used in the Finnish Language will help you to dramatically improve your speaking and comprehension skills.