Finnish for busy people

Adjectives with Fixed Modifiers – Yhdysadjektiivit

The name of this post is not incredibly catchy, but it’s the best one I could think of. Adjectives with fixed modifiers (alkumäärite) consist of a regular adjective with an element in front of it that modifies its meaning.

If you’re a beginner, you should focus on the page about adjectives and their opposites, and the colors first. The subject of this page is significantly more advanced.

These modifiers can have different functions. Some of them make the adjective stronger (ilmiselvä, vuorenvarma), others make it more specific (lumivalkoinen, taivaansininen). I will be marking the different parts of these adjectives with the modifier bolded just like in this paragraph.

If you like this type of word play, you will probably also enjoy my page on animal comparisons.

Finnish English
hiirenhiljaa as quiet as a mouse
hiuksenhieno super fine, subtle
iki-ihana exquisit
iki-ihastunut overjoyed
ikivanha really old, ancient
ilmiselvä totally clear, obvious
jääkylmä ice-cold
kalmankalpea deathly pale
kivikova rock-hard
kristallinkirkas crystal clear
kullankallis supersweet
kullankeltainen golden yellow
kuolemanvakava deadly serious
langanlaiha really skinny
likomärkä soaked, drenched
lumivalkoinen snowwhite
läpimätä rotten to the core
patalaiska bone-idle
pikimusta pitch black
pilkkopimeä pitch dark
piripintaan to the rim
putipuhdas spick-and-span
pähkähullu stark mad
päivänselvä clear as day
raivohullu raving mad
ratkiriemukas uproarious, side-splitting
ruohonvihreä grass-green
rutikuiva dry as dust
Finnish English
rutiköyhä penniless
salamannopea quick as lightning
supisuomalainen very Finnish
sysimusta jet-black
taivaansininen sky-blue
tuiki tavallinen very normal
tuiki tärkeä of the utmost importance
tulikuuma red-hot
tulipunainen fiery red
typötyhjä completely empty
täpötäysi overcrowded, full
täyskypsä fully ripe
umpihumalassa dead drunk
umpijäässä frozen solid
umpikuuro stone deaf
umpirakastunut very much in love
umpisokea blind as a bat
upouusi brand new
upporikas stinking rich
veitsenterävä razor-sharp
ventovieras complete stranger
vihoviimeinen the very last
vitivalkoinen pure white
vuorenvarma dead certain
ypöyksin utterly alone

Do you know any other adjectives with fixed modifiers?
Let me know in the comments!

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Michael Hämäläinen

Korpela also lists the following “word-specific intensifiers”:

As the links show, often these words are connected together without a space.