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-sk
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The suffix -sk derives adjectives from nouns (slaafslave > slaafskslavish). The suffix has a variant in -ysk. This variant is also productive, but mainly attached to non-native bases. Examples are oseaanocean > oseanyskoceanic, kommunistcommunist > kommunistyskcommunistic and kwadraatsquare > kwadratyskquadratic.

The semantics of these derivations are diverse, but in many cases it can be described as "in relation with {noun}", "concerning {noun}" or "of the kind of {noun}". The meaning of words with a -sk suffix often corresponds with the meaning of words with the -ich suffix; both derivations are often interchangeable.

The suffix also takes adjectives and verbs as a base. Examples are grutlarge > grutskproud and prateto talk > praattalkative. In some cases, the base is not or no longer an existing Frisian word, so its category cannot be ascertained. An example is melaatskleprous < *melaat. For expository reasons, these bases will be dealt with in this topic as well.

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[+] Noun as input

Adjectives derived from nouns with the suffix -sk express a property related to the meaning of the noun. This is possibly the most common group of -sk derivations, which can be considered to be productive. Examples are given in the table below:

Table 1
Base form Derivation
boerfarmer boerskrural, peasant-like
deadeath deadskdeathly
himelheaven himelskheavenly
skoalleschool skoalskschool-like, regimented
ierdeearth ierdskearthly
stêdcity stedsktowny
tsjerkechurch tsjerkskreligious, devout
heakhook heakskorthogonal
bernchild bernskchildish
slaafslave slaafskslavish
An -ich derivation with similar semantics can be found in the following examples: moarnmorning > moarnsk / moarnichhaving a morning mood, hûndog > hûnsk / hûnichdespicable, bollebull > bolsk / bollichon heat (cows) and raamram > ramsk / rammichon heat (sheep).

A similar type of adjectives is formed out of nouns denoting days, months or seasons: sneinSunday > sneinske broekSunday trousers, maartMarch ~ maartske buiMarch shower, simmersummer ~ simmerske picknicksummer picnic. Depending on the context, the meaning is "typical for {noun}" or "meant for {noun}". Similar derivations related to timespans are forms ending in -liks).

The suffix -sk is also used to derive geographical adjectives, this is discussed in the topic on -sk with a geographical name as base.

Derivations with -ysk are mostly added after non-native bases. The semantics of these derivations are diverse, but in many cases it can be described as "in relation with {noun}", "concerning {noun}" or "of the kind of {noun}". Examples are given in the table below:

Table 2
Base form Derivation
magneetmagnet magnetyskmagnetic
fulkaanvolcano fulkanyskvolcanic
automaatautomat automatyskautomatic
ritmerhytm ritmyskrhythmic
filmfilm filmyskcinematic
In some cases, -ysk is added to a root that does not exist as an independent word:


Table 3
Base word Base root Derivation
kritykcriticism *krit krityskcritical
fonetykphonetics *fonet fonetyskphonetic
logikalogic *log logysklogical
sykluscycle *sykl syklyskcyclical
[show extra information]
x Words ending in -y

There are also derivations of which the base form ends in -y, for example: fotografyphotography > fotografyskphotographic and astrologyastrology > astrologyskastrological. In these examples, the derivations are seen as one of the suffix -sk. Alternatively, they could also be interpreted as a derivation with its variant suffix -ysk: fotograafphotographer > fotografyskphotographic and astroloogastrologer > astrologyskastrological. Semantically, this has little sense, however, as a word like fotografysk is directly related to fotografyphotography, and not to a photographer.

The suffix -sk is also used to derive adjectives from verbal stems. This appears to happen much more often than in the case of the Dutch counterpart -s. Some examples are given in the table below:

Table 4
Base form Derivation
stúmjeto sulk stúmsksulk about/over
smeuleto rivile smeulskscornful
sliteto wear out slytskworn
kliemjeto stick kliemsksticky
spotteto joke spotskscoffing
gapjeto yawn gapskyawny
klomjeto shiver klomskshivery
prateto talk praatsktalkative
pronkjeto flaunt pronkskgaudy
snauweto snarl snausksnarly
A similar semantic -ich derivation, sometimes with linking element -er-, can be found in the following examples: pronkjeto flaunt > pronksk / pronkerichgaudy, snauweto snarl > snausk / snauwerichsnarly, broeieto brew > broeisk / broei(er)ichsultry and haatsjeto hate > haatsk / hatichresentful.

Synthetic compounds such as goederjouskgenerous may also be analyzed as members of this group, because they are partially verbal. More details can be found in the part on synthetic compounds.

[+] Adjective as input

There are only two derivations which have an adjective as base. These are grutlarge > grutskproud and âldold > âldskoldish. Neither of them has a very transparent semantics.

[+] Opaque base

In some cases, the base does not exist as a word. Examples are given in the table below:


Table 5
Base form Derivation
*ryn rynskgenerous
*mjit mjitsksickly sweet
*skrou skrouskcold
*bat batskproud
*fluen fluenskflattering
*brod brodskbroody
*loop loopskin heat
*oerdweal oerdwealskextravagant
[+] Phonological properties

The suffix -sk[sk] does not change the stress pattern of the word. When the base form ends in a schwa, this vowel is deleted: ierdeearth > ierdskearthly.

The suffix -ysk[isk] does not bear main stress, but it is cohering: it attracts the main stress of the base, which ends up in the position before the suffix. Examples are DRAmadrama > draMAtyskdramatic, ALfabetalphabet > alfaBEtyskalphabetic, FULkaanvolcano > fulKAnyskvolcanic. Bases of -ysk adjectives exhibit various alternations typical of non-native stem allomorphy in the last syllable, witness the following pairs:

  • When the base ends in schwa, this vowel is deleted before -ysk: metoademethod > metoadyskmethodical, anekdoateanecdote > anekdoatyskanecdotic, hygiënehygiene > hygiënyskhygienic, ritmerhythm > ritmyskrhythmic.
  • The vowel of the last syllable undergoes vowel lengthening; this happens due to the fact that the last syllable bears stress. Examples are: motor[motɔr]engine > motoarysk[moto.ərisk]motor, reuma[rø:mɑ]rheumatism > reumatysk[rø:ma:tisk]rheumatic, alfabet[ɑlfɑbɛt]alphabet > alfabetysk[ɑlfɑbe:tisk]alphabetical. In apostel[ɑpɔstəl]apostle > apostolysk[ɑpɔsto:lisk]apostolic the schwa has become a full vowel.
  • If a base form ends in /ze/ or /se/, this ending is replaced by /t/: hypotezehypothesis > hypotetyskhypothetical, analyseanalysis > analytyskanalytic, emfazeemphasis > emfatyskemphatic. This is not the case in diagnoaze[diɑgno.əzə]diagnosis > diagnostysk[diɑgnɔstisk]diagnostic, where the vowel is shortened, a linking element -t- is inserted and the voiced [z] becomes voiceless [s].
  • In the following examples, in which the /s/ is replaced by /t/, the vowel can also be lengthened: gaos[ɡa.ɔs]chaos > gaotysk[ɡao:tisk]chaotic, skepsisscepticism > skeptysksceptical.

[show extra information]
x Literature

The phonological properties of -ysk largely resemble those of the Dutch equivalent -isch. More information about this can be found in De Haas and Trommelen (1993:328-331).

[+] Linking

In some -ysk derivations, there is a linking element between the base form and the suffix. When the base form ends in -ma, the linking element -t- is used: dramadrama > drama-t-yskdramatic, astmaasthma > astma-t-yskashtmatic, dogmadogma > dogma-t-yskdogmatic. Another linking element is -at- which can be found in probleemproblem > problem-at-yskproblematic. Note that here the /e/ can also be reduced to schwa. The linking element -ar- can also occur: fragmintfragment > fragmint-ar-yskfragmentary. There is also another linking element, -ist-, resulting in the ending -istysk. We see this in examples like the following: humorhumor > humor-ist-yskhumorous, modernmodern > modern-ist-yskmodernistic. However, examples like modernistyskmodernistic can also be seen as forms where the base ending /-me/ has been deleted, and -t- + -ysk has been added: modernismemodernism > modernis-t-yskmodernistic.

[+] Morphological potential

The suffix -sk can be input for further derivations with the suffix -ens and in some particular cases with -heid. Examples are rynskgenerous > rynskensgenerosity and bernskchildish > bernskens / bernskheidinfancy. The suffix -ysk cannot be input for further derivations, cf. magnetyskmagnetic > *magnetyskheid or ritmyskrhythmic > *ritmyskheid.

[+] Deletion of /k/: [(i)sk] or [(i)s]

According to Van der Meer (1988), Tamminga (1963:227-230) and (Visser (1985), the /k/ in the cluster /sk/ tends to be deleted in present-day language. Hence, [(i)sk] is changing into [(i)s].

Possible factors in the retention of /k/ are listed below:

  • According to Tamminga (1963:227-230), /k/ is more resistent if the word is monosyllabic, or if the suffix occurs in a syllable with focus. So, in monosyllabic words like praatsktalkative and slytskworn the /k/ is more likely to be pronounced than in bisyllabic words like minmânsknot man enough to do it or oerseeskoverseas.
  • According to Van der Meer (1988) and Tamminga (1963:227-230), /k/ is stronger in inflected forms. Thus in inflected words like stedsketownish and âldskeelderly, /k/ is more likely to be pronounced than in non-inflected stedsktowny or âldskoldish.
  • According to Visser (1985) and Van der Meer (1988), /k/ is stronger in words where -sk can barely be seen as a suffix (for example: tosktooth > *tos).
  • Frisian has a lot of words that have a counterpart in Dutch (for example: fiskfish vs Dutch visfish, or DútskGerman vs Dutch DuitsGerman). /k/ appears to be stronger in forms that do not have a Dutch counterpart. So in words like fiskfish and DútskGerman it is more likely that /k/ will not be pronounced than in words like grutskproud (Van der Meer (1988) and Tamminga (1963:227-230)).

These factors do not rule out the possibility of a pronunciation without /k/, they only say that the /k/ has a stronger position in these cases. Weening (2014) shows that, under influence of linguistic factors as the ones mentioned above and social factors like age, the suffix is indeed more and more pronounced without final /k/. In the written language, however, -sk still has a very strong position. The ability of writing Frisian appears to have a positive influence on the speaker's pronunciation of /k/, that is, someone who can write Frisian is using /k/ more often in his speech than someone who cannot.

[show extra information]
x Literature

This article is based on Hoekstra (1998:132). More information about the suffix -sk can be found in the following literature: Van der Meer (1988), Tamminga (1963:227-230), Visser (1985) and Weening (2014).

References:
  • Haas, Wim de & Trommelen, Mieke1993Morfologisch handboek van het Nederlands. Een overzicht van de woordvormingSDU Uitgeverij
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1998Fryske wurdfoarmingLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Meer, Geart van der1988It 'achterheaksel' SK en it leksikonWurdfoarried en wurdgrammatika, LjouwertLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Meer, Geart van der1988It 'achterheaksel' SK en it leksikonWurdfoarried en wurdgrammatika, LjouwertLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Meer, Geart van der1988It 'achterheaksel' SK en it leksikonWurdfoarried en wurdgrammatika, LjouwertLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Meer, Geart van der1988It 'achterheaksel' SK en it leksikonWurdfoarried en wurdgrammatika, LjouwertLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Meer, Geart van der1988It 'achterheaksel' SK en it leksikonWurdfoarried en wurdgrammatika, LjouwertLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
  • Visser, Willem1985Ta de nasalearring yn it Frysk (diel II)In tydskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde169-89
  • Visser, Willem1985Ta de nasalearring yn it Frysk (diel II)In tydskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde169-89
  • Visser, Willem1985Ta de nasalearring yn it Frysk (diel II)In tydskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde169-89
  • Weening, Joke2014De uitspraak van de woord-finale /sk/-clusterRijks Universiteit GroningenThesis
  • Weening, Joke2014De uitspraak van de woord-finale /sk/-clusterRijks Universiteit GroningenThesis
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