Monday, September 15, 2014

kiire - kiireinen - kiireellinen

Notice the difference in use between these three words that all mean busy, hurry, or some sort of rush.

kiire - hurry (a noun)

  • Minulla on kiire. - I'm busy.
  • Onko sulla kiire? - Are you busy?
  • Miksi sulla on aina kiire? - Why are you always in a hurry?

kiireinen - busy (an adjective)

  • Hän on todella kiireinen. - He is really busy.
  • Ensi viikko on todella kiireinen, mutta sitten helpottaa. - Next week will be really hectic, but then it will be easier.

kiireellinen - urgent (an adjective, not used with people.)

Älä kiirehdi. - Don't rush.


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. Click here to see all my courses.


  1. Thank you, Hanna! :)

  2. On yllättävää, että sinä aina löydät suomen kielestä jotain todella hämmentävä (confusing) ulkomaalaisille. Nämä kiire- sanat olivat oikein epäselviä
    minulle. Kiitos paljon selityksestä.

  3. I don't think I understand the difference... is it just the degree of urgency that changes, so they get progressively stronger?

  4. Hyvä kysymys! :)

    'Kiire' is used with the 'minulla on' structure.
    'Minulla on kiire' and 'Minä olen kiireinen' are pretty much the same.
    'Kiireellinen' is urgent. A person cannot be kiireellinen, but it's always a thing that is.

    1. I would say kiireinen refers to a general condition (possibly over a longer time span) which may include periods of lull, etc. whereas kiire refers to a more constant hurry (and often a shorter period of time).
      Note that kiireinen is kiire + -inen i.e. "has (some) hurry" and kiireellinen "includes hurry". Think punainen and laktoosillinen.

  5. Miksi sulla on aika kiire? Why it's aika and not aina? Aika =time and aina = always.

    1. ..because there was a typo! Thanks for noticing, it's fixed now.:)