• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Afrikaans
Show full table of contents

Nouns bear the grammatical feature number, which has two values in Frisian: singular and plural. Actually, dealing with number boils down to a treatment of the plural; the singular is always morphologically unmarked, since as a rule the bare stem and the singular of Frisian nouns have the same form. It is worth mentioning that Modern West Frisian does not show any sign of a dual. This is different for North Frisian, spoken in the north of Germany, at least with respect to pronouns. For some information, see the extra The North Frisian dual.

The plural is primarily expressed by suffixation. There are two regular and productive suffixes: -en and -s, which are usually distributed according to the criterion whether or not the final syllable of the singular bears stress. Examples are par pear > parren and apel apple > apels. The criterion also holds for complex words, although some suffixes select their own plural ending. It is tempting to assume that also the final schwa of so many Frisian nouns belongs to this stock. These nouns show the otherwise unexpected ending -en, for example in tsjerke church > tsjerken. Some historical phonological processes caused a vowel change in the stem: breaking (e.g. foet foot > fuotten) and shortening (e.g. lân land > lannen) in particular have left their marks on Frisian plural formation on a fairly large scale. Lengthening is rare, and can be attributed to Dutch influence. To some extent, there is variation between the regular suffixes. The noun earm arm, for example, can both have earmen and earms as its plural form. The latter plural is impossible in Dutch; the differences with Dutch are summarized in a special section.

Another peculiarity of Frisian is the possibilty of double plurals, although this only happens to a limited extent. An example is red-en-s, of the singular reed skate. The suffix -e (i.e. bean bean > beane) and what could be called a zero suffix (skiep sheep > skiep) also belong to the irregular plural formation. Also vowel change is possible: ko cow > kij. As can be seen, part of these irregular plurals resemble the English cognates, and there are more examples of this kind. More irregularity can be found in the plurals of the words man man and frou woman and their compounds, which may show a plural element -lju (next to regular -en).

Loans partly form a separate system in plural formation, since they may inherit endings from their Greek, Latin or French origin. Separate systems can also be found in minor Frisian varieties; the dialect of the island of Schiermonnikoog is especially interesting since it has maintained the older three-way gender system.

Finally, some typical uses will be discussed. One of them is measure nouns, which sometimes do not show a plural ending although this could be expected on semantic grounds. An example is trije mingel/*mingels molke three litres of milk. Something comparable is the collective use of singular nouns referring to animals, for instance in der rôt sit yn 'e weet the rat.SG sit-3SG in the wheat there are rats in the wheat. Another peculiarity are the socalled pluralia tantum, i.e. plurals without a singular, as mûzels measles (cf. *mûzel). Finally, some attention will be paid to the formation of singulatives from mass nouns, for example by way of diminutive formation, as in ark tools > arkje tool.

[hide extra information]
The North Frisian dual

Most of the North Frisian varieties had a dual which was in use up to the 19th century. The variety of Heligoland and the southern varieties on the mainland do not have this (at least, there is no record of its existence). On the other hand, in some areas the dual persisted up to the mid 20th century, especially in Sölring, the variety of the island Sylt. (See Hoekstra (2011) for myths around the dual in its final period). The general form of the dual was the following:

Table 1
Person Nominative dual Object dual
1 wat onk
2 jat   jonk

(with possible alternation of the vowel throughout the varieties, for example unk/junk for Sölring object forms).

The dual was also used in an 'inclusory construction' as in Wat an Carline we.two and Carline Carline and me). Sölring had a third-person dual form, which led to a slightly different paradigm and obviously was a rather recent innovation:

Table 2
Person Nominative dual Object dual
1 wat unk
2 at junk
3 jat -

Hoekstra (2011) gives a detailed overview of the dual in North Frisian, including a discussion about the origin of the Sölring third-person dual. He also mentions some myths that emerged around the phenomenon, probably due to its curiosity.

[This extra is written by Hauke Heyen (Kiel)]

[+]Regular plural formation

The regular plural is formed by adding one of the suffixes -en or -s to the noun. The general rule for the distribution of these endings is as follows: the suffix -s appears after nouns ending in an unstressed vowel or a syllable consisting of a schwa plus sonorant (-el, -er, -en, -em). The plural suffix -en appears elsewhere.

The following examples with the ending -s all have more than one syllable, with stress on the first one:

Table 3
Singular with unstressed final syllable Plural with -s
tuba tuba tubas
jierdei [jIdi] birthday jierdeis
domeny vicar domenys
auto car auto's
oehoe eagle owl oehoes
Aldegea (name of a village) Aldegeas
merje mare merjes
rûzje fight rûzjes
leppel spoon leppels
sipel onion sipels
fiter shoe string fiters
otter otter otters
koken kitchen kokens
rekken bill rekkens
biezem broom biezems
lichem body lichems
[hide extra information]

The nouns kristen christian and heiden heathen have a plural ending -en (kristenen, heidenen), possibly under the influence of the language of the Church, which is almost exclusively Dutch. If heiden means gipsy; uncultivated, bad person, then it has a regular plural heidens.

A few nouns, in which final -je derives from the suffix -inge historically, may have kept the original ending -en, sometimes next to the synchronically regular ending -s: penje penny > penjen/penjes; skelje shilling > skeljen/skeljes; dealje plank, deal > dealjen/dealjes. Compare also the following pluralia tantum with a similar historical background: skealjen/skealjes scales; twiljen twins; raanjen tricks, pranks; Alderheljen All Saints, All Hallows.

Furthermore, the word widdo widow has widdo's as well as the plural form widdowen. In the South-East of the language area the plural of hynder horse is hyns (with truncation of -er).

After a stressed syllable, the ending is -en:

Table 4
Singular with stressed final syllable Plural
krie crow krieën
aai egg aaien
liuw lion liuwen
boer farmer boeren
tsjil wheel tsjillen
sok sock sokken
rút window-pane ruten
ring ring ringen
kers candle; cherry kersen
skúf slide skuven

Thus far, the examples presented nicely fit the main pattern that -en follows stressed syllables and -s is attached to unstressed ones. However, there is a class of exceptions. In contrast to nouns ending in schwa plus sonorant, which regularly take -s, nouns with a final schwa plus obstruent take -en:

Table 5
Singular with final schwa + obstruent Plural
jilmes alms jilmesen
sokses sucker soksesen
trekpot [trɛpət] teapot trekpotten [trɛpətən]
andert answer anderten
swédrik thymus swédriken
estrik floor tile estriken

In fact, this patterns with the stress criterion, which can also be translated into an instruction that addition of a plural morpheme may not lead to a constant or even higher sonority. After an obstruent, the sonority would not decrease by a following /s/, however. That may be the reason why -en is selected instead.

[+]The plural of complex words

Prefixed and compound nouns have the same plural ending as their head, i.e. as their right-hand element. Suffixations usually form their plural according to the same rules as simplex words. Some suffixes may, however, select a plural ending contrary to the general rule.

The idea of such a selection is significant in order to explain an otherwise important exception to the stress rule. This exception is the many nouns that have a final schwa (but not those ending in -je): one would expect the suffix -s, but they rather take -en:

Table 6
Singular ending in -e `Plural
tsjerke church tsjerken
râne edge rânen
hikke gate hikken
tine tooth (of a fork) tinen
lodde spade lodden
bokse (trouser-)leg boksen
tynge message tyngen
holle head hollen

This behaviour may be explained if it is assumed that the ending -e has suffix-like properties. It also seems to determine the gender of these nouns, which is common, and as a suffix it might also select the plural ending -en. That -e selects the plural ending -en and is not simply truncated before the plural suffix (as, for example, in the case of diminutive formation), is shown by an example as rigele row, line > rigelen. If -e had been truncated here, the plural ending would have been -s.

Loan words with a final schwa which have become naturalized get the ending -en as well. Others keep the ending -s with which they are imported, and there is also a large mixed category where speakers waver:

Table 7
Loans with final schwa Plural
masine machine masinen
ballade ballead balladen
metoade method metoaden
fitamine vitamine fitaminen
kassette cassette kassetten/kassettes
antinne aerial, antenna antinnen/antinnes
sonate sonata sonaten/sonates
kojoate coyote kojoates
file traffic jam files
dame lady dames

Proper names that end in a schwa, such as Jelle or Oebele, when used as count nouns, get the plural ending -s, in accordance with the general rule:

Example 1

Wy ha trije Jelles / Oebeles yn 'e famylje
we have three Jelle-PL / Oebele-PL in the family
Our family counts three members with the name Jelle / Oebele

The kinship terms pake grandfather and beppe grandmother, that function as proper names as well, waver between -s and -en, if they are used as count nouns: paken/pakes and beppen/beppes. Another exception is jonge boy, which has jonges as plural form, possibly under influence of Dutch jongen-s boy-PL, or under analogical pressure of famke girl > famkes.

Most other suffixes ending in a schwa select the plural ending -en as well, but a few also irregularly take the suffix -s:

Table 8
Suffix Reference Singular Plural
-e -e deade dead man/woman deaden
-te -te sykte illness sykten
-tme -tme berchtme moantain range berchtmen
-ske -ske kammeraatske (girl)friend kammeraatskes
-ert -ert leffert coward lefferts
-e -e fioeliste female violin player fioelistes

In the last case, the ending -s may have been chosen for semantic reasons; the plural ending -en would obscure the difference between male fioelist and female fioeliste.

The suffix -ier takes the irregular plural -s if it denotes a human being, but has the regular ending -en if it refers to a thing. Compare:

Table 9
Singular Plural
bankier banker bankiers
koerier courier koeriers
portier porter, doorkeeper portiers
portier door portieren
fisier vizier fisiers
fisier visor fisieren
formulier form formulieren

An exception is ofsier officer > ofsieren.

The final conclusion can be that most Frisian plurals form a trochaic pattern. Striking exceptions are nouns ending in a schwa plus obstruent, as exemplified above.

[+]Vowel changes in the stem

A considerable number of nouns having a centralizing diphthong as their stem show breaking of this vowel in the plural form ending in -en. Breaking refers to the transition of /iə/ to /jI/, of /Iə/ to /jɛ/, of /uə/ to /wo/ and /oə/ to /wa/. Furthermore, there is the single case /yə/ > /jö/ in flues membrane; fleece > fljuzzen.

In the table below some examples of the main patterns will be given. Breaking is reflected in the orthography in the case of /uə/ > /wo/, spelled as <oe> - <uo>. If the broken vowel is followed by a single consonant, this is doubled in the spelling of the plural. Below, the broken vowel is emphasized:

Table 10
Breaking Singular Plural
/iə/ > /jI/ trie(d) thread triedden
priem knitting needle priemmen
trien tear triennen
hier hair hierren
kies molar kiezzen
/Iə/ > /jɛ/ heak hook heakken
peal pole peallen
beam tree beammen
tean toe teannen
feart canal fearten
sleat ditch sleatten
/uə/ > /wo/ hoed hat huodden
stoel chair stuollen
spoen chip of wood spuonnen
toer tower tuorren
goes goose guozzen
foet foot fuotten
/oə/ > /wa/ koal cabbage; cole koallen
hoarn horn hoarnen
soan son soannen
doar door doarren
hoas stockings hoazzen
/yə/ > /jö/ flues membrane; fleece fljuzzen

It should be noted that breaking is not applied consistently. Shortening, by which long vowels may turn into short ones, again before -en, is irregular in a similar fashion. A selection follows below; all possible changes are represented, as are the possible final consonants, which was also the case in the table of breaking above:

Table 11
Shortening Singular Plural
/u:/ > /u/ (or /y/) mûs mouse mûzen
hûs house huzen
/e:/ > /I/ beest beast; animal; cow bisten
/ɛ:/ > /ɛ/ mês knife messen
heak hook (dial.) heakken
/ɔ:/ > /ɔ/ hân hand hannen
stôk stick stokken
rôt rat rotten
/a:/ > /a/ kaam comb kammen
slaab bib slabben
baarch pig bargen

The pronunciation /hɛ:k/ for heak hook can be found in the east of the language area (more details can be found in shortening).

Dutch had a historical rule of lengthening in open syllable which in a number of words of that language has led to a vowel alternation in the plural form. Usually, the Frisian vowel is left unchanged in comparable cases. For example, the plural of Dutch dak /dak/ roof is lengthened to daken /da:kən/, where the plural of the homophonous singular remains short in Frisian: dak /dak/ > dakken /dakŋ̩/.

Still, a few nouns in Frisian show lengthening of the stem in the plural:

Table 12
Lengthening Singular Plural
/I/ > /e:/ lid member leden
/ɛ/ > /e:/ gebed prayer gebeden(s)
/ɔ/ > /oə/ god god goaden
gebod command geboaden(s)

These lengthenings must have occurred under Dutch influence (note the religous or administrative context of the concepts involved). It also applies to foreign, and expecially scientific, words like neutron neutron > neutroanen, demon demon > demoanen or gen gen > genen. On the plural of foreign words ending in -or, see point 4 in the list below.

Finally, it should be stressed that the vowel changes dealt with above have an additional feature: they occur as a side-effect of the marking of the plural by a plural suffix. This is different with a few (rare) cases in which vowel change is the sole marker of plurality. These will be dealt with in the section on irregular plural formation below.

[hide extra information]
The plural of lid

The plural of the noun lid only lengthens to leden if it has the meaning member, clearly under Dutch influence. There is another word lid lid, cover that pluralizes in a regular way: lidden. The word lid can also mean part of the body, limb. In that case, the plural is also irregular, i.e. lea, a contraction of Old Frisian litha (in those days a regular plural of singular lith).

[+]Variation of -en and -s

Nouns ending in a liquid ( /l/ or /r/) plus /m/ may take the plural -en as well as -s. The former occurs more in the West of the province, the latter more in the East. Compare:

Table 13
Singular Plural
swolm ulcer swolmen/swolms
psalm psalm psalmen/psalms
helm helmet helmen/helms
skelm rascal skelmen/skelms
earm arm earmen/earms
stoarm storm stoarmen/stoarms
noarm norm noarmen/noarms
foarm form foarmen/foarms
term intestine termen/terms
wjirm worm wjirmen/wjirms
skerm screen skermen/skerms
berm verge, roadside bermen/berms

This variation is due to the fact that nouns ending in -lm and -rm may undergo schwa insertion; more information on its phonological aspects can be found in schwa insertions in coda clusters and especially in word-final sequences of a liquid and a nasal. The result of this process may have been lexicalized in the East, thus leading to underlying forms like /swoləm/ for swolm ulcer or /tɛrəm/ for term intestine. As a consequence, like all nouns ending in schwa + sonorant, they get the plural ending -s.

A similar variation between the two plural endings is found with nouns ending in the sequence -eil:

Table 14
Singular Plural
neil nail neilen/neils
fleil flail fleilen/fleils
dweil mop dweilen/dweils
seil sail seilen/seils

Again, the eastern variants with -s may have undergone schwa insertion between the glide, i.e. the second part of the diphthong /ai/ and /l/.

[hide extra information]

Fleil flail has a variant flalje, with metathesis of /j/ and /l/. The same metathesis is also found in raljes rails.

Another case of variation is to be found in nouns of more than one syllable ending in -ing. They can take the plural -en or -s. Compare:

Table 15
Singular in -ing Plural
hjerring herring hjerringen/hjerrings
feriening club, organization ferieningen/ferienings
ketting chain kettingen/kettings
riedling riddle riedlingen/riedlings
feroaring change feroaringen/feroarings
oersetting translation oersettingen/oersettings

This variation can probably be ascribed to a conflict between a morphological criterion (the suffix -ing, or -ling, selecting the ending -en) and the regular phonology-based rule of adding -s to an unstressed syllable. If -ing itself is preceded by an unstressed syllable, i.e. if it gets secondary stress, it always has a full vowel underlyingly. Nouns in which -ing appears in this stress configuration then appear to have a strong preference for the plural ending -en:

Table 16
Singular Plural
iepening opening iepeningen
tekening drawing tekeningen
wrakseling struggle wrakselingen
utering utterance uteringen

In these examples, the syllable with -ing is always preceded by a syllable containing a schwa, cf. tekening /te:kənIŋ/ drawing.

A semantic exception to the possibility of variation are those nouns that denote a human being or an animal. These always take the plural ending -en. Compare:

Table 17
Singular Plural
kening king keningen
wytsing viking wytsingen
haadling chieftain haadlingen
learling pupil learlingen
deadeling wet, wimp deadelingen
hokling yearling (heifer/calf) hoklingen
wezeling weasel wezelingen

A few, mostly archaic, nouns have the suffixal variant -inge. These nouns invariably take the plural ending -en. Examples are printinge printing > printingen and rispinge harvest > rispingen.

[hide extra information]

It should be noted that the -s-plural with nouns ending in -ing is in a state of flux, so that for some speakers the stress condition (no secondary stress) and the semantic condition (no human reference) may be less rigid than described here. Moreover, in Standard Frisian the -s-ending is sometimes preferred to the -en-ending, because of the fact that Dutch always has the plural ending -en in these cases.

There is some debate about the linguistic background of the variation. Veen (1984-2011: -ing I, II; -ling I) ascribes it to a different pronunciation of the suffix, as [Iŋ] or [əŋ], respectively. The former would opt for -en, the latter for -s (see also Riemersma (1979:33)). This is criticized by Hoekstra (2011:288), who states that the suffix builds an unstressed syllable anyway. As an alternative, he assumes that the plural ending -en is selected by the suffix.

The uncertainty about the choice of the plural ending can also be read off from the two dialect maps in Paardekooper (1992:62). Both endings can be found across the whole language area, possibly with a slight bias for -en in the west and -s in the east.

[+]Some differences with Dutch in the choice of the plural ending

Dutch has the same two plural suffixes -en and -s and the same major distribution rule as Frisian. Nevertheless, the two languages show a number of differences in the choice of the plural ending:

  1. A number of nouns ending in a schwa + sonorant in Dutch can have the ending -en, mostly next to regular -s. The two plural forms often show stylistic or semantic differentiation. The Frisian counterparts invariably have the ending -s. Compare:
    Table 18
    Frisian singular Frisian plural Dutch singular Dutch plural
    wûnder miracle wûnders wonder wonderen
    middel means; medicine middels middel middelen
    moksel mussel moksels mossel mosselen/mossels
    apel apple apels appel appelen/appels
    artikel article artikels artikel artikelen/artikels
    teken sign tekens teken tekenen/tekens
  2. Many nouns ending in -e in Dutch can take both -en and -s in the plural, although the -s-plural is often preferred in the spoken language. The Frisian counterparts always take -en. Compare:
    Table 19
    Frisian singular Frisian plural Dutch singular Dutch plural
    binde gang binden bende benden/bendes
    boade messager boaden bode boden/bodes
    sykte illness sykten ziekte ziekten/ziektes
    griente vegetable grienten groente groenten/groentes
    gemeente municipality gemeenten gemeente gemeenten/gemeentes
  3. A number of nouns in Dutch take a plural ending in -eren. This element is lacking in Frisian:
    Table 20
    Frisian singular Frisian plural Dutch singular Dutch plural
    keal calf keallen kalf kalveren
    laam lamb lammen lam lammeren
    liet song lieten lied liederen
    rêd (cog)wheel rêden rad raderen
    aai egg aaien ei eieren
  4. Loan-words ending in -or can take both -en and -s in Dutch. In the former case, the vowel undergoes lengthening in open syllables (see also at the end of the section on vowel changes in the stem above). The Frisian counterparts, in which -or is often pronounced with a schwa, can only have the plural ending -s. Compare:
    Table 21
    Frisian singular Frisian plural Dutch singular Dutch plural
    professor professor professors professor professoren/professors
    radiator radiator radiators radiator radiatoren/radiators
    projektor projector projektors projector projectoren/projectors
    faktor factor faktors factor factoren/factors

    In fully naturalized words, the spelling -or has been replaced by -er, thereby indicating the reduction to schwa better. Examples are dokter doctor and moter motor. A further adaption to the Frisian phonological system is the variant perfester /pərfɛstr̩/ professor, of course again with plural -s.

  5. A number of loan-words ending in (unstressed) -ie in Dutch take the plural ending -en or sometimes have -en next to -s. The Frisian counterparts which end in -je always take the plural ending -s (as do native words ending in -je, see the table above). Compare:
    Table 22
    Frisian singular Frisian plural Dutch singular Dutch plural
    baktearje bacterium baktearjes bacterie bacteriën
    poarje pore poarjes porie poriën
    gemikaaljes chemicals chemicaliën
    finânsjes finances financiën
    koloanje colony koloanjes kolonie koloniën/kolonies
    provinsje province provinsjes provincie provinciën/provincies
    evangeelje gospel evangeeljes evangelie evangeliën/evangelies
  6. In the cases discussed in a preceding section (see the section above: variation between -en and -s), in which Frisian may have -en or -s, Dutch always takes the plural ending -en. Examples are Dutch arm arm (Frisian earm), with its plural armen, or Dutch haring herring (Frisian hearring), which has haringen as its plural form.
[hide extra information]
Dutch influence

Because of the heavy influence of Dutch on many speakers of Frisian, one can come across endings that originally were not acceptable in Frisian. This is especially the case with the nouns ending in -e, and then foremost in words that have a direct counterpart in Dutch. Examples are dutchified forms like *gemeentes municipalities or *boades messagers. This even extends to nouns that differ formally to a much greater extent. Examples are *kroades (from kroade wheelbarrow; Dutch kruiwagen) or *widzes (from widze cradle; Dutch wieg).

One can also encounter Dutch influence in most other cases above. Examples are *artikelen instead of artikels articles (case 1), *faktoaren instead of faktors factors (case 4) and *baktearyen instead of baktearjes bacteria (case 5; but also with the Dutch ending /i/ in the singular). As far as is known, the Dutch ending -eren (case 3) is never taken over, but this is a marked ending in Dutch anyway.

[+]Double plurals

Besides variation between the suffixes -en and -s, Frisian can also use them both. We then get the ending -ens, historically a double plural of -en + -s. We find double plurals in particular with nouns whose referents naturally occur in groups or pairs:

Table 23
Singular Double plural
lears boot learzens
reed skate redens
boei handcuff boeiens

Most nouns with a double plural also occur with a single one:

Table 24
Singular (Double) plural
gebod command geboaden(s)
gebed prayer gebeden(s)
earm arm earmen(s)
wei way wegen(s)
weach wave weagen(s)
gebeart gesture gebearten(s)
trek feature trekken(s)
miede meadow mieden(s)
pokken(s) smallpox
galgen(s) braces, suspenders

Occasionally, a particular plural form is restricted to a certain region. The double plural earmens arms, for example, typically occurs in the South West. The words pokkens smallpox and galgens braces, suspenders are pluralia tantum.

Sometimes, a new singular was formed on the basis of an original double plural form. A clear example is the singular treppen staircase, from double pluralic treppens, which is based on singular trep. Another example is singular wolken cloud from double plural wolkens, in itself based on singular wolk. For completeness' sake, the pairs trep SG - treppen PL and wolk cloud.SG - wolken cloud.PL also exist.

[hide extra information]
Frisian influence

Double plurals are rare in Dutch. Nevertheless, in the diaries of the Frisian farmer Lieuw Jans de Jong (1825-1855), written in Dutch, several double plural forms can be observed. Hoekstra (1999:114) analyzes them as cases of interference from Frisian. An example is wegens, from Dutch weg road. Interestingly, one can also come across double plurals that do not have a Frisian counterpart. A few of them contain a suffix -te: groentens (from Dutch groente vegetables), vlaktens (from vlakte plain) and ziektens (from ziekte illness). Other examples are schadens (from schade damage and uiens (from ui onion). However, as to the latter, see also the plural in some minor Frisian varieties for an example from the dialect of Hindeloopen.

[+]Irregular plural formation

Next to the regular plural formation with the suffixes -en and -s we can find irregular pluralization that makes use of other means.

Firstly, we have some zero plurals, that is, we see no change at all. The most important are bern child.SG child, which has the same form bern child.PL as its plural. The same behaviour can be observed with skiep sheep.SG sheep, with its identical plural skiep sheep.PL.

The words reden reason and lúsjefers match may either have a zero plural or a regular plural -en:

Example 2

a. Om twa reden(en) haw ik nee sein
for two reason-(PL) have I no said
I have said no for two reasons
b. Der leine twa ôfbaarnde lúsjefers(en) op 'e flier
there laid two off-burned match-(PL) on the floor
There were two burnt matches lying on the floor
[hide extra information]
Lúsjefers match(es)

Historically, the word lúsjefers match must be a plural of lúsjefer (cf. Dutch lucifer), a form that can also be found in older texts. However, a new singular form lúsjefers developed. Verdenius (1947) explains this as follows. The word mainly occurred in the plural, which is pronounced, with R-deletion, as [lysjəfɛs]. From the surface form, one could infer a hypothetical singular [*lysjəfɛ], which, however, does not obey the phonotactics of Frisian. Hence, the plural form lúsjefers was also taken to be the singular form. On the basis of this singular, a new, and actually double, plural lúsjefersen could emerge.

A few words have no ending either, but they do show vowel change. The most important is ko /ko:/ cow, which has kij /kɛi/ as its plural form. Obsolete are goes /ɡuəs/ goose > gies /ɡiəs/ and foet foot > fiet (although gies was still observed at the end of the 20th century). Nowadays, their common plurals are guozzen and fuotten, both with a broken vowel (see Vowel changes in the stem above).

Consonant change can be observed in the pair wei way > wegen and dei day > dagen. The original guttural fricative still occurs in the plural form, but has been palatalized and has merged with the original vowel into a diphthong in the singular. As the second element of a compound, dei is phonetically reduced in middei afternoon, jierdei birthday and the days of the week, as moandei monday etc., leading to the pronunciation [di] (in the north) or [djə] in the south. In both cases, the regular plural is -s: jierdeis birthdays, etc.

Two nouns show a plural morpheme -e. These are eart pea > earte and bean bean > beane. Both nouns also show the regular plural -en, however, and the latter suffix is gaining ground. The ending -e is mainly restricted to the north of the language area, where some speakers also begin to use the form with -e as singular. It should be noted that in some minor Frisian varieties the suffix -e is more common; see the plural in some minor dialect varieties for more information.

Finally, some irregular plurals that do not fit in any of the categories above should be mentioned:

Table 25
Singular Plural
âlder parent âlden
skoech shoe skuon
deihier day's wage dagen hier
-heid -heden
-ichheid -ichheden

The word deihier, with stress on the second element, can be seen as a univerbation. The plural, apparently with a less strict cohesion, shows the suffix attached to the first element. The irregularity in the productive suffixes -heid and -ichheid have a significant effect in actual language use, since both are productive and relatively frequent.

The plurals of the words man man and frou woman deserve special attention. In the unmarked case, they become pluralized by addition of the element -lju: manlju men and froulju women. This element exists as an independent word in the form lju people. Regular plural formation with the suffix -en exists as well, however with a restricted application. The regular plural frouwen is only used for frou mistress and frou queen (cards). The plural mannen has a special connotation of familiarity and intimacy, for example in:

Example 3

No mannen, tiid foar in glês bier!
Well, lads, time for a glass of beer!

Compounds with man as head, which often might be better analysed as derivations with a suffixoid -man, behave differently. Some only have -en. This choice in cases like krystmannen Santa Clauses or brêgemannen bridegrooms might be due to the fact that the plural of these nouns is infrequent anyhow. In other cases the special connotation of the plural form mannen might be the reason, as in bakjemannen hawkers, pedlars or foaroanmannen leaders. Other nouns only take -lju, in this case however replacing the full second member of the compound, as in seeman sailor > seelju or sportman sportsman > sportlju.

There is also a category with two possibilities, with -lju or with -en. In this case the plural with -mannen is a count noun, whereas the plural with -lju is only used in a collective sense (just as lju people itself). Compare:

Example 4

a. Der binne twa grientemannen yn ús doarp
There are two greengrocers in our village
b. De grientelju kinne net út tsjin 'e supermerken
The greengrocers cannot compete with the supermarkets

Other examples of this category are timmermannen/timmerlju carpenters or plysjemannen/plysjelju policemen.

[+]The plural of loanwords

Loanwords often have the plural ending -s, also in cases where -en would be required if the word were native. Compare:

Table 26
Singular Plural
kafee pub kafees
buro desk buro's
sirkwy circuit sirkwys
wigwam wigwam wigwams
kajak kajak kajaks
konsul consul konsuls
fan fan fans
goal goal goals

Others have -en in accordance with the rule for native words:

Table 27
Singular Plural
idee idea ideeën
paraplu umbrella parapluën
kersjet corset kersjetten
kanon canon kanonnen
demokrasy democrasy demokrasyen

Some Latin and Greek loanwords may retain their original plural ending. Thus loanwords ending in -us that refer to persons normally change the ending in -y in the plural:

Table 28
Singular Plural
promovendus PhD-student promovendy
kritikus critic kritisy
akademikus academic akademisy

Loanwords on -um often have the native plural ending -s next to the learned plural ending (-um > -a). Examples are museum museum > museums/musea or sintrum centre > sintrums/sintra.

Note that most loanwords enter Frisian through Dutch, so that the plural ending is often similar to the one in Dutch.

[+]The plural in some minor Frisian varieties

The plural formation as described above is valid for the standard variety of Frisian. However, the language has a few outlying and rather deviating dialects which potentially could have their own characteristics. This applies in a structural sense to the variety of the island of Schiermonnikoog, first of all as this dialect still displays a three gender system. At the end of this section we will provide a brief sketch of the plural morphology of East- and North-Frisian varieties spoken in Germany. But first the dialects of Hylpen and Terschelling will be examined.

The Frisian varieties as spoken in the small town of Hylpen and on the island of Terschelling both follow the main distribution of the plural suffixes -en and -s. Both only take the suffix -en after nouns ending in -ing. Neither dialect shows breaking, but shortening does occur in Terschelling /fɔ:lə/ foal > /fɔlən/ or /hɔ:n/ hand > /hɔnən/ and in Hylpen dôr /dɔər/ door > dorren dɔrən. Furthermore, in a few cases qualitative differences between the stem vowel of singular and plural show up where standard Frisan has breaking. Examples from Terschelling are /stu:l/ chair > /stolən/ or /tri:d/ thread > /trIdən/. From Hylpen: foet /fuət/ foot > futten /føtən/ or sôl /sɔ:l/ sole > söllen /sʌlən/.

Both dialects also show some additional irregular forms. Terschelling has the same singular and plural form in the word hòs horse(s). In contrast to standard Frisian, it has vowel change in /sxe:p/ sheep.SG sheep > /sxi:p/ sheep.PL sheep. A now obsolete vowel change can be found in Hylpen skip /skIp/ ship > skyp /skip/ ship.PL ships. Hylpen also shows the phenomenon of double plurals. Extra beyond the set of standard Frisian are kiuwe gill > kiuwens and öie onion > öiens. An interesting fact about Terschelling is the development of an extra plural marker -s after the plural element -joed /ju:d/, for singulars with -man as second element (cf. standard Frisian -lju and the description of the relevant pattern in irregular plural formation). The result is a double plural. An example is timmerman carpenter. The original plural is timmerjoed. Nowadays, this form is extended to the double plural timmerjoeds.

The dialect of the island of Schiermonnikoog is particularly interesting because of the fact that it still has three grammatical genders. The deviation in plural formation is found in the nouns with feminine gender, at least as far as its members do not denote female human beings. This set has its own plural suffix, i.e. -e, pronounced as schwa. Examples are daar doar > dare, deus box > deuze and tjark church > tjarke. Also animals (not necessarily female) can be feminine and take -e, as airk male duck > airke, fil butterfly > fele or kat cat > kôte. Fele and kôte also show vowel lengthening. This may occur when the stem vowel of the plural ends up in an open syllable. However, this lengthening is not a regular process, as there are many exceptions: dod wheelbarrow > dodde or wyk week > wyke are cases in point. There are also a handful of masculine nouns that take -e, plus some ten or so neuter nouns (a remnant of an older ending -u). However, the great majority of masculine and neuter nouns regularly follows the same pattern as standard Frisian. The standard rule also applies to female human beings, like prinses princess > prinsessen or non nun > nonnen, nouns that have feminine gender.

[hide extra information]
Plural inflection of nouns in East and North Frisian

Modern East Frisian mostly has -e for marking masculine and neuter plural and -(e)n for marking feminine plural, whereas -e has become the main plural ending in Mainland North Frisian. Due to a general apocope of final schwa in Insular North Frisian which also affected the historical plural ending -e, the regular plural endings here are -er (mostly masculine) and -en, while the use of -s increased in all Frisian varieties due to influence of Dutch and Low German – especially in now extinct varieties (varieties of Wangerooge and Südergoesharde), though it is not as widespread as in West Frisian (but see Heligoland (Krogmann (1957:47-48)). The North Frisian variety of the Halligen also knows -ens. See (Hoekstra (2001:777) for a general overview.

A broader overview of noun inflection (including lists of irregular forms) for the mainland varieties can be found in Wilts (1993) (Wiedingharde), Wilts (1995) (Bökingharde), Wilts (1995) (Nordergoesharde), Wilts (1997) (Halligen) and Hoekstra (2014) (Südergoesharde).

For a broader overview for the insular varieties see Wilts (1995) (Föhr), Wilts (1995) (Amrum), Wilts (1995) (Sylt), and see Borchert et al (1987) for a more recent overview than Krogmann of Heligoland.

For East Frisian see the grammatical overview in Fort (1980:192-193).

[This extra is written by Hauke Heyen (Kiel)]

[+]The plural of measure nouns

Many measure nouns show no plural marking if they are preceded by a cardinal number or by the quantifiers in pear a few, hoefolle how many and safolle so many. Obviously, this is due to the semantics of these elements: measure nouns denote entities that have no reason of existence apart from the fact that they can be counted, which makes it more or less superfluous to distinguish a singular and a plural. Compare the following cases:

Example 5

twa kilo sûker two kilo's of sugar
trije mingel/liter molke three litres of milk
in pear kúb sân a few cubic meters of sand
fjouwer pûnsmiet greidlân four acres (4 x 36 are) of grassland
twa pear skuon two pairs of shoes
hoefolle gûne how many guilders
tsien oere ten hours
tolve jier twelve years
safolle kear so many times
trije tûzen three thousand
fyftich persint fifty percent
hûndert man hundred people

An impression of other measure nouns that may appear without plural marking in Frisian follows below:

Table 29
Field Measure noun
weight: gram gram
ûns ounce
pûn pound
ton ton
length: millimeter millimeter
sintimeter centimeter (etc.)
streep millimeter
trêd approximately one meter
jellen yard
fiem fathom
foet foot
tomme thumb
volume: mudde hectoliter (potatoes)
area: kante meter square meter
are are
hektare hectare (etc.)
bunder hectare
amount: ton a hundred thousand guilders/euro's
time: kertier quarter
number: hûndert hundred
miljoen million
miljard billion

Several, now obsolete, measure nouns could be added to this list.

However, not all measure nouns show this behaviour. The following nouns always take a plural ending:

Example 6

twa stuorren 2 x 5 cents
tweintich sekonden twenty seconds
in pear menuten a few minutes
fjirtjin dagen fourteen days
hoefolle graden how many degrees

A few cases differ from the usage in Dutch:

Table 30
Frisian Dutch
tsien sinten ten cents tien cent
acht wike eight weeks acht weken
njoggen moanne nine months negen maanden

In certain cases some of these words may have a plural. First, if the particular entities are not presented as a whole but separately in order to emphasize duration, etc.:

Example 7

Ik ha wol trije oeren wachte
I have waited for three hours

Secondly, if they have a special, not specifically measuring sense:

Example 8

a. twa kilo's sûker
two kilopacks of sugar
b. Der leine sân gûnen op 'e tafel
There were seven guilder coins on the table
c. Wy ha hjoed mar trije oeren
We have only three hours (periods) today

And thirdly, if they are not preceded by a cardinal number or one of the quantifiers mentioned above for example, if they appear "bare" in emphatic sentences like

Example 9

a. Der kamen hûnderten minsken nei de útstalling
Hundreds of people came to the exhibition
b. Hy hat der jierren foar sparre
Hy has saved money for it for many years
c. Wy ha yn 'e fekânsje kilometers rûn
We have walked many kilometers during our holidays

or if they are modified by other elements

Example 10

a. de lêste meters
the last meters
b. de noflike wiken op Malta
the nice weeks on Malta
c. de njoggentiger jierren
the ninety-SUFF years
the nineties
d. alle kearen
all time-PL
every time
[+]Collective use of singular nouns

Singular nouns, especially nouns referring to animals (vermin), are sometimes used in a collective sense. Compare:

Example 11

a. De wjirm sit yn it hout
The wood has worm
b. De rôt sit yn 'e weet
There are rats in the wheat
c. De rûp is yn 'e koal
There are caterpillars in the cabbages
d. De slak sit yn 't slaad
There are snails in the lettuce
e. Wy ha de mûs yn 'e greiden
We have mice in the meadows
f. De granium sit ûnder de lûs
The geranium is covered with lice

Compare further the following expressions from technical languages (beekeepers, fishermen):

Example 12

a. De bij swarmet
The bees are swarming
b. De iel rint
The eels are running
[+]Pluralia tantum

Pluralia tantum are nouns that appear in the plural form (or at least trigger plural agreement), but that, unlike normal plurals, are mass nouns. They refer to a collective. Consequently, they can not be preceded by numerals (cf. *trije klean three clothes).

In origin, many pluralia tantum are normal plurals which have semantically, and sometimes formally, dissociated themselves from their former base. The plurale tantum klean clothes, for example, is the former plural of Old Frisian klath, kleth article of clothing (Modern Frisian klaad gown; kleed cloth, carpet, curtain).

Not all pluralia tantum derive from normal plurals, however. Quite a number of them have been formed by adding the plural ending to a mass noun, in order to emphasize the fact that these mass nouns do not refer to a homogenous whole, but to a collective of items. Compare, for example, the plurale tantum túchen weeds, which derives from the synonymous túch weeds, and the plurale tantum bouwen (parcels of) farmland from bou farmland.

A third historical source for pluralia tantum are originally singular words, which due to their collective meaning triggered plural agreement. An example is lju people, which derives from the Old Frisian singular noun liode people. Synchronically, the origin of pluralia tantum is often unclear.

Some other pluralia tantum in Frisian are:

Example 13

lea body [historically the plural of lid limb]
moanjes mane
skealjen/skealjes scales
âldfaars ancestors
mûzels measles
pokken smallpox
simmels bran
sjudden flax waste
imen bees [cf. bij bee - bijen bees]
(grutte) spitsen (close) friends
kornútsjes friends (connections)
midsieuwen Middle Ages
tûkelteammen hindrances, obstacles
gritsen tricks; whims
kluchten nonsense
nuvere oanslaggen silly whims
rare minen meitsje make faces
meneuvels gestures
omkriten surroundings
omkanten contours, outlines
ynkomsten income
machten testicles
ynhouten frame-timbers of a ship; constitution
omballingen side-issues
rarichheden bad things, bad news
finânsjes finances
gemikaaljes chemicals

The following pluralia tantum derive from a mass noun:

Example 14

kosten costs, expenses [cf. kost living; boarding; fare]
fruchten crops [cf. frucht crops]
legen lowlands [cf. leech lowland]
weten wheat (fields) [cf. weet wheat]
hjouwers oat (fields) [cf. hjouwer oat(s)]
kjitten weeds [cf. kjitte weeds; mud]
bloeisels blossoms [cf. bloeisel blossoms]
(yn 'e) reiden (in the) reed [cf. reid reed]
ûngânzen afterbirth [cf. ûngâns afterbirth]
yngewanten bowels [cf. yngewant bowels]

Compare also toponyms like

Example 15

De Wâlden S.-E. part of Fryslân
De Bjirmen the villages Pitersbierrum, Seisbierrum and Easterbierrum
De Legeaen the villages Tersoal, Sibrandabuorren, Gau, Goaiïngea and Loaiïngea
De Flieterpen the villages Jislum, Ginnum, Reitsum and Lichtaard

If a plurale tantum is used as the base of a derivation or as the first element of a compound, the formal plural ending is truncated. Compare:

Example 16

simmelbôle bran bread
machtbreuk scrotum rupture
midsieusk mediaeval
kornútsjepolityk favouritism
wâldreis delivery [literally: trip to De Wâlden]
wâldsjer inhabitant of De Wâlden
Legeaster inhabitant of De Legeaen
[hide extra information]

The original plurale tantum harsens brain(s) is a singular noun in the present-day language, unlike its Dutch counterpart hersenen. In the spoken language it is usually used as a coarse word for head. It is always pronounced as [hasəs], i.e. it has lost the nasalized /n/, which shows that it is not felt as a complex word anymore. Further, it has developed a new plural. Compare:

Example 17

Gean der mei jim grouwe harsensen foarwei!
Get out of the way with your big heads!

If the word is used as a medical term in the standard language, it is singular as well. Compare:

Example 18

De harsens bestjoert it lichem
the brain.SG control-3SG the body
The brain controls the body

The final -s is not truncated if the word constitutes the first element of a compound (cf. harsensoperaasje brain surgery). Due to its common use as a coarse word for head, however, harsens competes with brein brain(s) as a technical term in Standard Frisian.

[+]The formation of singulatives

In Frisian there are a number of ways to turn mass nouns into singulatives, i.e. nouns denoting a countable unit of the relevant substance. First, a singulative can be formed by change of gender, i.e. neuter turns to common. An example is it tried the thread (mass) ~ de tried the thread (thing). More examples can be found in the topic on gender.

Another way to form singulatives is to add the diminutive suffix to a mass noun:

Table 31
Mass noun Singulative
ark tools arkje tool
praat talk praatsje chat
reau equipment, utensils reauke cup and saucer
túch dust túchje speck of dust
sukelade chocolate sûkelaadsje (piece of) chocolate
grús grit grúske piece of candy (in coffee ot tea)
kryt chalk krytsje piece of chalk
swilk oil-cloth swilkje table oil-cloth
hout wood houtsje draughtsman, checkerman
lear leather learke leather strap; washer

Finally and most productively, the semantically empty measure noun stik piece may join up with a mass noun complement to form a singulative expression:

Example 19

stik klean piece of clothing
stik ark tool, piece of equipment
stik tou piece of rope, cord, string
stik fee head of cattle
stik lân piece of land
stik húsrie piece of furniture
stik bôle piece of bread
stik wurk piece of work
[hide extra information]

This topic is greatly indebted to an unfinished grammar of Frisian, written in English by Jarich Hoekstra.

A short overview of Frisian plural formation can be found in Folkertsma (1950) or De Haan (1995:78-80). For the plural of some individual words, see Kalma (1952:91). Some data from the oldest Frisian grammar (about 1600) are mentioned by Kalma (1938:8).

For a general treatment of plural formation in Frisian, see also Hoekstra (2011). More specifically, he pays attention to singular nouns ending in a schwa, and analyzes their plural ending -en by giving the ending -e the status of a suffix that can select its own plural form. For this idea see also Visser (1994), who bases himself on an original observation by Tamminga (1985:132-134). The plural of nouns ending in -ing is dealt with briefly by Hoekstra (1990).

Hoekstra (2011:296-298) also has a special subsection on Dutch influence on the plurals of nouns ending in -e. On Dutch influence see also Breuker (1984:224) andDe Haan (1997:72). A contrastive overview of the differences between Dutch and Frisian pluralization can be found in Hoekstra (1982:51-54). On (the lack of) vowel lengthening, and the plural of lid in particular, see Hoekstra (1989).

Frisian double plurals are discussed in Tiersma (1982), an article that explores the consequences for those nouns that have their plural as the unmarked form. See also Tiersma (1993).

On the historical development of irregular plurals see Versloot (2005) and Versloot (2005). On the irregular ending -e, see Versloot (2001). On the plural of man man and frou woman see Hoekstra (1987) and Hoekstra (1987). Hoekstra and Versloot (2019) explore the role played by factors like frequency and salience in the retention of irregular plural forms.

The data for the dialect of Terschelling have been drawn from Knop (1954:145-146). For Hylpen: De Boer (1950:115-116) and (Blom 1981). For Schiermonnikoog: Fokkema (1969:19-22) and Visser and Dyk (2002:xxxi-xxxii). The history of ending -e after neuter nouns in this dialect is dealt with by Versloot (1996) and Versloot (2007).

On the plural of measure nouns see Hoekstra (1988). On pluralia tantum see Hoekstra (1990) and Hoekstra (1990).

  • Blom, Gosse1981Hylper WurdboekLjouwert/LeeuwardenFryske Akademy
  • Boer, Bernardus de1950Studie over het dialect van HindeloopenAssenVan Gorcum & Comp.
  • Borchert, M., Århammar, R. & Århammar, N1987Helgoländisches LehrbuchVerein zum Wiederaufbau des früheren Helgoländer Nordseemuseums e. V./Verlag Nordfriisk Instituut
  • Breuker, Pieter1984Oer it lienen fan bûne morfemen út it Hollânsk yn it westerlauwerske FryskMiscellanea Frisica. In nije bondel Fryske stúdzjesAssen, Van Gorcum219-228
  • Fokkema, Douwe1969Beknopte spraakkunst van het SchiermonnikoogsLjouwert/LeeuwardenFryske Akademy
  • Folkertsma, Eeltsje B1950It meartal by de haedwurdenDe Pompeblêdden: tydskrift foar Fryske stúdzje2143-46
  • Fort, Marron C1980Saterfriesisches Wörterbuch. Mit einer grammatischen ÜbersichtHelmut Buske Verlag
  • Haan, Germen J. de1997Contact-induced changes in modern West FrisianUs Wurk4661-89
  • Haan, Rienk de1995Mei freonlike groetnis. Skriuwwizer mei stekwurden en foarbyldenLjouwert, Fryske Akademy
  • Hoekstra, Eric & Versloot, Arjen P2019Factors promoting the retention of irregularity. On the interplay of salience, absolute frequency and proportional frequency in West Frisian plural morphologyMorphology2931-50
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1982Kontrastive analyse en Frysk taalûnderwiisBreuker, Pieter et al (ed.)Bydragen ta de didaktyk fan it Frysk yn it fuortset ûnderwiisGrins, Frysk Ynstitút R.U.G.; Ljouwert, AFUK43-64
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1987Manlju en froulju (I)Friesch Dagblad28-03Taalsnipels 26
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1987Manlju en froulju (II)Friesch Dagblad04-04Taalsnipels 27
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1988Twa kilo sipelsFriesch Dagblad13-12Taalsnipels 64
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1989Lidden en ledenFriesch Dagblad28-10Taalsnipels 125
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1990Hjerringen of hjerringsFriesch Dagblad10-03Taalsnipels 138
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1990Pluralia tantum (I)Friesch Dagblad01-09Taalsnipels 158
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1990Pluralia tantum (II)Friesch Dagblad08-09Taalsnipels 159
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1999It Frysk yn 'e deiboeken fan Lieuwe Jans de Jong (1825-1855)It Beaken61108-125
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2001Comparative Aspects of Frisian Morphology and SyntaxMunske, Horst Haider, Århammar, Nils, Hoekstra, J.F., Vries, O., Walker, A.G.H., Wilts, O. & Faltings, V.F. (eds.)Handbuch des FriesischenMax Niemeyer775-786
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2011Sprachmythen - Fiktion oder WirklichkeitDer nordfriesische Dual: Fakt und MythosLang161-183
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2011Sprachmythen - Fiktion oder WirklichkeitDer nordfriesische Dual: Fakt und MythosLang161-183
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2011Meervoudsvorming in het Westerlauwers Fries en het Nederlands (en patroniemvorming in het Noord-Fries)Taal en Tongval63281-301
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2011Meervoudsvorming in het Westerlauwers Fries en het Nederlands (en patroniemvorming in het Noord-Fries)Taal en Tongval63281-301
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2011Meervoudsvorming in het Westerlauwers Fries en het Nederlands (en patroniemvorming in het Noord-Fries)Taal en Tongval63281-301
  • Hoekstra, Jarich2014Südergoesharderfriesische Grammatik
  • Kalma, Douwe1938Ta de lûdleare fen it Middel-Frysk. IDe Pompeblêdden: tydskrift foar Fryske stúdzje115-11
  • Kalma, Douwe1952Spraekkunstige ditten en datten IIDe Pompeblêdden: tydskrift foar Fryske stúdzje2390-92
  • Knop, Gerrit1954De spraakkunst der Terschellinger dialectenAssenVan Gorcum & Comp.
  • Krogmann, W1957Helgoländer WörterbuchVerlag der Akademischen Wissenschaften
  • Paardekooper, Piet C1992Afrikaanse en Nederlandse meervouden op -ingsTaal en Tongval4452-66
  • Riemersma, Tr1979Sylabysjerring, nazzeljerring, assymyljerringLjouwertKoperative Utjowerij
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1985Kantekers. Fersprate stikken oer taal en literatuerStifting Freonen Frysk Ynstitút oan de Ryksuniversiteit te Grins (FFYRUG)
  • Tiersma, Pieter M1982Local and General MarkednessLanguage58832-849
  • Tiersma, Pieter M1993Lokale markearders yn it Frysk [Local markedness in Frisian]Tydkskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde8111-114
  • Veen, Klaas F. van der et al1984-2011Wurdboek fan de Fryske taal - Woordenboek der Friese taalFryske Akademy
  • Verdenius, Andries A1947Een bijzonder geval van meervoudsvorm voor enkelvoudsfunctie in het FriesDe Nieuwe Taalgids40128
  • Versloot, Arjen P1996Frysk is in âlde taal (2)Friesch Dagblad5-10-1996unknown
  • Versloot, Arjen P2001Earte en beaneFriesch Dagblad27-10-2001unknown
  • Versloot, Arjen P2005Alle man en dier (I)Friesch Dagblad15-10-2005unknown
  • Versloot, Arjen P2005Alle man en dier (II)Friesch Dagblad22-10-2005unknown
  • Versloot, Arjen P2007Skippen skypjeFriesch Dagblad11-08-2007unknown
  • Visser, Willem1994Schwa-appendixen in het FriesBooij, Geert Evert & Marle, J. van (eds.)DialectfonologieAmsterdamP.J. Meertens-Instituut116-137
  • Visser, Willem & Dyk, Siebren2002Eilander Wezzenbúek: woordenboek van het SchiermonnikoogsFryske Akademy Ljouwert
  • Wilts, Ommo1993Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. I: WiedinghardeMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1995Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. V: BökinghardeMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1995Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. VI: NordergoeshardeMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1995Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. II: FöhrMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1995Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. III: AmrumMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1995Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. IV: SyltMatthiesen
  • Wilts, Ommo1997Friesische Formenlehre in Tabellen. VII: HalligenMatthiesen