Wednesday, September 26, 2012


As I am studying for my PhD in Tallinn I have from time to time to read papers in Estonian. Here is a list of words from something I am reading at the moment.

erinevus - difference, dissimilarity
ilmne - obvious, plain, apparent, evident
ilmnema - to appear, manifest
ilmselt - obviously, apparently
ilmsesti - obviously, apparently
ilmsi - in reality
meenutus - flashback, recollection
keelejuht - informant [restricted to linguistic field work?]
kokkuvõte - conclusion, summary
käimasolev - in progress
käsitlema - to treat, deal with, consider moodustama - to form, constitute, make up
lähtuvalt - based on
määr - norm, standard; extent, degree, rate
narratoloogia - narratology
osaleja - participant
püüdma - catch; attempt, endeavour
raamistik - framework
sarnane - similar, alike
sündmus - event, ocassion
temaatika (n) - subject matter
temaatika (s) - thematic, topical
tulenema - to come, arise,  issue from, spring from, stem from
tulenev - resultant
vaatenurk - point of view, angle
võrdlus - comparison
väitma - to claim, allege, argue (a point)
üsna - quite


  1. Hey, few comments if you don't mind...

    'sarane - similar, alike'...looks like it's missing 'n', - Sarnane

    'ilmsi - visibly, openly' a bit more nuanced I think. Basically the context Estonians most often use it comes from "unes või ilmsi". Meaning literally something like "is this a dream or reality". 'Ilmsi' by itself drives from (maa)ilm, meaning the world, or again -the reality.

    'väitama - to labour'...something has cone wrong with this. 'to labor' should mean töötama. Väitama however, the closest I can think of would be 'väitma', which is something like 'to claim' perhaps.

    Hope that it helps!

  2. Hey Syntax, some more thoughts...

    keelejuht - informant, doesn't quite make sense to me personally. "Informant" looks like would be more like "informaator" (or also "koputaja" in slang) in Estonian. "Keelejuht" however means literally Language Lead, a position for someone holding the overall responsibility for the linguistic quality..etc.

    lähtuvalt - the closest I could put it would be "based on". For example 'lähtuvalt fakdidest' - 'based on facts'.

  3. The word seemed strange to me too. I guess the use is restricted to linguistic field work. See:

  4. Hey, this 'ilmsi - visibly, openly' kept bugging me since visibly means literally 'nähtavalt' and openly is more like 'avalikult'. Both have nothing much to do with the meaning of "ilmsi". So, I came across a better reference for it -

    Ilmsi - mitte unes, tõeliselt, meaning 'not dreaming, truly ( reality)'.

    Well, since I'm not a native English speaker, I wouldn't bet on it that "visibly & openly" are absolutely synonymous with "not dreaming". It's just my gut feeling that tells me it's not the case.:-)

  5. well, keelejuht is totally correct here in this context, it really does mean a person who gives information on language/linguistics (just google "keelejuht").
    and TM, everything cannot be translated literally.. i mean, it can be done but it does not mean that you have to take it literally, too. hopefully your fakdidest was just a typo.