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The suffix -ommen derives adjectives from affective nouns (keardel big fellow > keardelommen like a big fellow), adjectives (bloedich bloody > bloedichommen very heavy) and interjections (blinder! devils! > blinderommen extraordinary).

The suffix mostly adds an even higher degree to what is expressed by the base. -ommen is an unproductive suffix, and is not used anymore in daily speech.

[+]Noun as base

Sometimes, the derivation with -ommen [omm̩] has the meaning "such as {noun}", but mostly one feels that the affective meaning of the base is even strengthened. Examples are given in (a) of (1) and (2) below. Instead of this suffix, the preposition phrase fan in N of a N can be used, which is shown in the (b)-examples. See for this construction in the syntactic part. There is no strong meaning difference between these two possibilities.

Example 1

a. In keardelommen snoek
a big.fellow-SUFFpike
A very big pike
b. In keardel fan in snoek
a big.fellow of a pike
A very big pike
Example 2

a. In baasommen swimmer
a boss-SUFF swimmer
An excellent swimmer
b. In baas fan in swimmer
a boss of a swimmer
An excellent swimmer

Derivations with -ommen often only have a strengthening meaning, for example in merakel a miracle > in merakelommen wille very much fun, in hont a big fellow > in hontommen ein rinnen a very long walk and in duvel a devil > in duvelommen pine very much pain.

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Origin of the suffix

Sipma (1949:58-59) argues that -ommen derivations are developed from a construction comparable the one mentioned in the (b)-examples above, but then with the preposition om instead of instead of fan of. Thus a construction like in keardel om in snoek a big.fellow instead-of a pike a very big pike would have become in keardelommen snoek a big.fellow-SUFF pike a very big pike.

Sytstra and Hof (1925:93) argue that the interjection duvelom! cursed!, forms the model pattern for all other -ommen derivations. It should then be extended with the emphatic suffix-en, as a result, have been used adjectivally (duvelommen very much).

[+]Adjective as base

Examples of derivations with -ommen from an adjective are bloedich bloody > bloedichommen very heavy, gloeiend glowing > gloeiendommen red-hot and merakel special > merakelommen extraordinary.

[+]Interjection as base

An example of a derivation with -ommen from an interjection is blinder! devils! > blinderommen extraordinary.

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This article is based on Hoekstra (1998:139-140). More details can be found in Sipma (1949:58-59) and Sytstra and Hof (1925:93).

  • Hoekstra, Jarich1998Fryske wurdfoarmingLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Sipma, Pieter1949Ta it Frysk IIR. van der Velde, Ljouwert
  • Sipma, Pieter1949Ta it Frysk IIR. van der Velde, Ljouwert
  • Sytstra, Onno H. & Hof, Jan J1925Nieuwe Friesche SpraakkunstLeeuwardenR. van der Velde
  • Sytstra, Onno H. & Hof, Jan J1925Nieuwe Friesche SpraakkunstLeeuwardenR. van der Velde