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The suffix –weg /ʋɛɣ/ creates adverbs, mainly from adjectives: dom stupid > domweg stupidly, simply, kort short > kortweg briefly, ruw rough > ruwweg roughly, ver far > verreweg by far. The affix, originating from the noun weg way, adds a manner meaning and often a connotation of subjective evaluation.


–weg attaches mainly to adjectives, which are usually underived and belong to the native stratum of Dutch. It denotes the manner specified by the base adjective. A few lexicalized complex adjectives also occur with this suffix, for example eenvoudig simple > eenvoudigweg simply, gaande going > gaandeweg gradually. -weg can also be attached to some adverbs, as in droogjes drily > droogjesweg drily, losjes loosely > losjesweg loosely. The use of –weg often conveys a subjective evaluation on the part of the speaker.

The suffix corresponds with the noun weg way, but it has developed into a bound morpheme with a specific meaning when used as part of an adverb. Hence it is to be considered a suffix from a synchronic point of view. Its history is reflected in the fact that it forms a prosodic word of its own. It usually carries secondary stress, as in domweg /ˈdɔmˌʋɛɣ/ simply. However, speakers may differ in their stress preferences for -weg-derivations, especially those with polysyllabic bases.

Adverbs with -weg do not appear as input to further derivations.

For more information, see Diepeveen (2012, chapter 17,online version).

  • Diepeveen, Ariane2012Modifying words. Dutch adverbial morphology in contrast.FU BerlinThesis