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The prefix okker- takes time adverbs displaying the ending -s. The prefix forms new adverbs, roughly having the meaning at the moment named in the base form, not so long ago. An example is okkerdeis PREF-day-SUFF the other day.

[+]General properties

The prefix okker- takes time adverbs ending in -s to form new adverbs with the meaning at the moment named in the base form, not so long ago. Examples are listed below:

Table 1
Base form Derivation
dei day okkerdeis the other day
moarn morning okkermoarns on a recent morning
moandei Monday okkermoandeis on a recent Monday
middei afternoon okkermiddeis on a recent afternoon
sneontejûn Saturday evening okkersneontejûns on a recent Saturday evening
wike week okkerwyks the other week
hjerstmis in the autumn okkerhjerstmis in a recent autumn
jier year okkerjiers in a recent year
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A synonymous compound

Derivations with okker- share their semantics with compounds of the adverb lêsten recently and a time adverb ending in -s. An example is lêstenmoarns on a recent morning (< moarn morning). The only difference is that compositions with lêsten denote moments which date slightly less far back in time than derivations with okker-. Therefore, it is not possible to attach lêsten to a noun like jier year, because a year is apparently too long ago. Hence, okkerjiers in a recent year is possible, but *lêstenjiers is not. The derivation okkerlêsten recently is a remarkable tautological expression in the light of these semantic similarities.

[+]Semantic relation to the base

As can be seen in the table, okker- only attaches to adverbs derived with -s. This suffix is used to form time adverbials on the basis of nouns that denote a duration. The suffix -s can attach to continuous durations like wike week and to discontinuous ones, like jûn evening. Suffixation with -s has a different effect, i.e. invoking a distributional or a categorial interpretation, respectively. These different interpretations are skipped, however, by subsequent prefixation by okker-. The effect of okker- in okkerwyks a few weeks ago and okkerjûns on a recent evening is basically the same. The prefix thus treats the time adverbials as one class.

[+]Phonological properties

The prefix is pronounced as [okər], but there is also a less frequent variant [hokər]. More examples of such variation can be found in the topic on the glottal fricative /h/. Nowadays, okker- is preferred in the orthography.

The stress in the derivations is not on the prefix, but on the base form, i.e. okkerDEIS the other day.

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This topic is based on Hoekstra (1989:16-18) and on Hoekstra (1998:157-159). The parallel with lêsten is also mentioned in Tamminga (1963:17-18).

  • Hoekstra, Jarich1989Bywurden fan tiid op -sTydskrift foar Fryske Taalkunde51-32
  • Hoekstra, Jarich1998Fryske wurdfoarmingLjouwertFryske Akademy
  • Tamminga, Douwe Annes1963Op 'e taelhelling. Losse trochsneden fan Frysk taellibben. IBoalsertA.J. Osinga