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While -aasje is a suffix similar to a Dutch suffix, i.e. -atie, its variant -eraasje is typically Frisian. The suffix is added to native verbs. It creates action nouns with common gender and a collective element. An example is skriuweto write > skriuweraasjewriting. The suffix is functionally comparable to -erij.

[+] Verb as base

The suffix -eraasje probably came into existence by analogy with French loans like moederaasjecompassion (from French moderation) and alteraasjealteration, commotion (from French altération).

While -aasje follows French loan verbs most of the time, its variant -eraasje is typically Frisian and is added to native, i.e. Germanic, bases. The result is always a noun of common gender.

Table 1
Base form Verbal stem Derivation
skriuweto write skriuw skriuweraasjewriting
strideto struggle striid strideraasjestruggle
fjochtsjeto fight fjocht fjochteraasjefighting
iteto eat yt iteraasjeeating
skiteto shit skyt skiteraasjediarrhoea
timmerjeto hammer timmer timmerderaasjewoodwork
kreamjeto give birth kream kreameraasjechildbirth

The derivation creates action nouns that often have a more or less collective element; for instance, in the case of skriuweraasje the whole of the writing process is involved.

[+] Nous as base

There are also two nouns that can function as base: the pluralia tantum kleanclothes and sintenmoney. These result in kleaneraasjeclothes and sinteraasjefinance. Hence, both derivations have a clearly collective aspect.

[+] Phonological properties

If the verb stem ends in /r/, a [d] is inserted. This insertion is optional after /n/ and /l/. An example is rekkenjeto calculate, which has rekken as base, which becomes rekkenderaasjecalculation after suffixation. A general treatment of d-insertion can be found in /d/-insertion in the sequences /nər/, /lər/, and /rər/.

The word timmerderaasjewoodwork also has the variant timmeraasjewoodwork. In the latter form, the final part of the stem has been truncated in order to avoid two identical rhymes.

[+] Similar suffixes

Most of the nouns in -eraasje have an additional variant ending in -erij next to them. To give a few examples: skriuweraasjewriting lives next to skriuwerijwriting, timmer(der)aasjewoodwork has the parallel form timmerderijwoodwork, etc. Nouns in -eraasje and -erij all have a more or less collective element in them. A difference could be that words ending in the former have a stronger pejorative connotation than words ending in the latter.

Furthermore, the nominal infinitive (see -en) can function as an action noun as well. Examples are: skriuwenwriting, fjochtsjenfighting, etcetera. A difference from the suffixes -eraasje and -erij is that the collective element is less clear.

Finally, some of the verbal stems mentioned above can be preceded by the prefix ge-. The verbal stem fjochtfight can then become gefjochtfight(ing) and the verbal stem skriuwwrite then turns into geskriuwwriting. A word like geskriuw has a clearly collective element, but in gefjocht this is not necessarily so.

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x Literature

This topic is based on Hoekstra (1998:122-123) and Hoekstra (1991). See also Visser (2000:181-182), who mentions this suffix in a much wider treatment of the adaptation of French loans in Frisian.

  • Hoekstra, Jarich1991Argewaasje en strideraasjeFriesch Dagblad04-05Taalsnipels 183
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1998Fryske wurdfoarmingLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Visser, Willem2000Frjemd wurdt eigener. Oer de âlde Frânske lienwurden yn it FryskIt Beaken62141-218
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