Friday, September 5, 2014

How to use '-kin', '-kaan' and '-kään' in Finnish

The enclitic particle kin means too, also. You can add it to almost any word, but notice how the meaning  of the sentence changes:

  • Minä juon kahvia. - I'll drink some coffee.
  • Minäkin juon kahvia. - Me too, I'll also drink some coffee.
  • Minä juon kahviakin. - I will drink also coffee. (In addition to something else.)

When added to a verb, kin can mean a small surprise or a change of mind:

In negative sentences, use kaan or kään according to the rules of vowel harmony.

  • Minä en juo teetä. - I don't drink tea.  
  • Minäkään en juo teetä. - Me neither, I don't drink tea. 
  • Minä en juo kahvia enkä juo teetäkään. - I don't coffee and I don't drink tea either.
  • Minä juon teetä. Tai ei, minä en juokaan teetä. - I'll drink some tea. Or no, I won't drink any tea after all. 

In case you wonder about the future and present tenses:

  • Minä juon nyt teetä. - I'm drinking tea now. 
  • Minä juon teetä. - I drink tea. (In general)
  • Minä juon teetä. - I'll drink tea. 

Notice that you can also express frustration with kin:

  • Oli tämäkin päivä! - What a (horrible) day this was!

About the author of Random Finnish Lesson: 

My name is Hanna Männikkölahti. I am a professional Finnish teacher who gives private online lessons and simplifies books into easy Finnish. Please read more in and follow this blog, if you want to be the first one to know when I post something new. 


Arctica said...

So it's completely fine to not indicate something is in the future by adding indicator words, and hope that the context will make it clear in the situation? Something simple for once!! =)

Anonymous said...

If you want to make the future more clear, you could add "tulen": "Minä tulen juomaan teetä" - "I will drink tea". Of course it can also mean "I'm coming to drink tea" so :P ("Tulevaisuus" - "Future")