• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Saterfrisian
  • Afrikaans
Show all

The prefix okker- takes time adverbs displaying the ending -s. The prefix forms new adverbs, roughly having the meaning at the moment named in the base form, not so long ago. An example is okkerdeis PREF-day-SUFF the other day.

[+]General properties

The prefix okker- takes time adverbs ending in -s to form new adverbs with the meaning at the moment named in the base form, not so long ago. Examples are listed below:

Table 1
Base form Derivation
dei day okkerdeis the other day
moarn morning okkermoarns on a recent morning
moandei Monday okkermoandeis on a recent Monday
middei afternoon okkermiddeis on a recent afternoon
sneontejûn Saturday evening okkersneontejûns on a recent Saturday evening
wike week okkerwyks the other week
hjerstmis in the autumn okkerhjerstmis in a recent autumn
jier year okkerjiers in a recent year
A synonymous compound

Derivations with okker- share their semantics with compounds of the adverb lêsten recently and a time adverb ending in -s. An example is lêstenmoarns on a recent morning (< moarn morning). The only difference is that compositions with lêsten denote moments which date slightly less far back in time than derivations with okker-. Therefore, it is not possible to attach lêsten to a noun like jier year, because a year is apparently too long ago. Hence, okkerjiers in a recent year is possible, but *lêstenjiers is not. The derivation okkerlêsten recently is a remarkable tautological expression in the light of these semantic similarities.

[+]Semantic relation to the base

As can be seen in the table, okker- only attaches to adverbs derived with -s. This suffix is used to form time adverbials on the basis of nouns that denote a duration. The suffix -s can attach to continuous durations like wike week and to discontinuous ones, like jûn evening. Suffixation with -s has a different effect, i.e. invoking a distributional or a categorial interpretation, respectively. These different interpretations are skipped, however, by subsequent prefixation by okker-. The effect of okker- in okkerwyks a few weeks ago and okkerjûns on a recent evening is basically the same. The prefix thus treats the time adverbials as one class.

[+]Phonological properties

The prefix is pronounced as [okər], but there is also a less frequent variant [hokər]. More examples of such variation can be found in the topic on the glottal fricative /h/. Nowadays, okker- is preferred in the orthography.

The stress in the derivations is not on the prefix, but on the base form, i.e. okkerDEIS the other day.


This topic is based on Hoekstra (1989:16-18) and on Hoekstra (1998:157-159). The parallel with lêsten is also mentioned in Tamminga (1963:17-18).

  • Hoekstra, Jarich1989Bywurden fan tiid op -sTydskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde51-32
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1998Fryske wurdfoarmingLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga
printreport errorcite