Saturday, March 1, 2014


Sitten can mean so many different things!


  • Sitten on sun vuoro. - Then it's your turn.
  • Sitten pestään kädet! - Then we'll wash hands.
  • Sitten se soitti mulle ja pyysi anteeksi. - Then he called me and said that he was sorry. 


  • Mä soitan sulle sitten, kun olen valmis. - I'll call you when I'm ready.
  • Sitten kun minulla on enemmän aikaa, alan harrastaa liikuntaa. - When I'll have more time, I'll start exercising. (This is a classic example of sitkuttelu, as in spoken language this is often shortened to "Sit ku..")
  • Sitku koulu on ohi, mä muutan Nykiin ja alan julkkikseks. - When the school is over, I'll move to New York City and become a celebrity.


In that case:

  • No sitten mä en ainakaan tule! - Well in that case I definitely won't come!
  • Sitten minä olen väärässä. - In that case I'm wrong. 

Adding some emphasis:

  • Kenen se sitten on, jos ei sinun? - Whose is it then, if it's not yours?
  • Mitä sitten? - So what?
  • Se oli sitten siinä. - That was it, then. 

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About the author of this blog:

My name is Hanna Männikkölahti, and I am a native Finn who gives private lessons via Skype and simplifies books into easy Finnish. Please leave a comment, if you have something to ask about Finnish or novels in easy Finnish.


Anonymous said...

Interesting! And, quite often, in spoken language, it will be just 'sit', just as you mentioned in the 'sitku' example. For example, "Se oli sit siinä." or "Mä soitan sulle sit ku (mä) oon valmis."

I guess the only situations when you *can't* shorten it is the "ago" meaning; you have to say "viisitoista vuotta sitten". Right?

Random Finnish Lesson said...

True! In the 'ago' case, the spoken language from would be 'sitte'.

Iina.Hsu said...

Could it possible to use also ´sitten´ as ´since´, like since two years ago, kahden vuoden sitten?

Hanna said...

Not really. Two years ago = kaksi vuotta sitten.

Here's how to express "since" in Finnish:

Olen asunut täällä vuodesta 2010 lähtien. = I've lived here since the year 2010.
Olen ollut sairas viime perjantaista saakka. = I've been sick since last Friday.
Olen ollut täällä kesästä asti. = I've been here since summer.

Iina.Hsu said...

kittos! :)

Unknown said...

I came across a couple of sentence where it looks like sitten has been used as some kind of intensifier. What does it actually mean?

Keksit, jotka Satu oli leiponut, maistuivat sitten hyviltä!

Ruoka, jota mummo (aina) tekee, on sitten ihanaa!

Random Finnish Lesson said...

Yes, it can also be an intensifier like in your examples. Thanks for adding that! :)