The long consonants tt,pp,kk and p,t,k
before l or n everywhere in
Nynorn acquire the so called preaspiration, i.e. a short
preceding [h]: [ht,htl,htn,hp,hpl,hpn,hk,hkl,hkn].
Read the following words:
a) bakk 'bank, slope; edge, bank', ikke
'not', mukkið 'much', mitt
'my (N)', røtt 'red' (N), upp
'up', knippa 'to break asunder', knotti
'ball', neppa 'to join together',
b) ketling 'kitten', netla
'to trifle with one's work', bjokl 'high
dorsal-fin of a whale', mukler 'big (pl. M)',
driplet 'spotted', skiplaga
'to build air-castles'.
In Mainland Nynorn, o,å change to [oi] in
front of tt: gott [goiht] 'good (N)', nått [noiht]
'night', tottlig [toihtli] 'comely, neat'.
Foula/Westside Nynorn is free of
2. Adjectives. Introduction.
Nynorn adjectives take genders, cases and numbers. It means
that, for instance, in the expression "white horse" the word
"white" must take the same gender, number and case as the
The initial singular forms of masculine and feminine have no
ending and do thus not differ: gul 'yellow'
The neuter form takes the ending -t: gult
If the adjective ends in -d or -ð,
in neuter either consonant changes to -t,
giving double -tt after a vowel or single -t
in case there is a preceding consonant: blid 'kind-hearted' (M,F) - blitt 'kind-hearted' (N), røð
'red' (M,F) - røtt 'red' (N), bald
'bold; quick; skilful' - balt.
Adjectives which end in a vowel require in neuter double -tt
too: grå 'grey' (M,F) - grått
Adjectives ending in a consonant + t undergo
no changes in neuter: bjart 'cold (of wind);
biting, sharp (of weather)'.
The adjective gud 'good' has an irregular
neuter form gott.
NB! Do not forget about preaspiration in words like blitt,
røtt and additionally the [o]-[oi] alternation as in grå-grått,
The plurals of adjectives are -er (M), -ar
(F) and zero in N (the plural N form is identical to the singular
M. gul - guler, røð - røðer, blid - blider,
gud - guder
F. gul - gular, røð - røðar, blid - blidar, gud - gudar
N. gult - gul, røtt - røð, blitt - blid, gott - gud
M. gud drengi 'a good boy' - guder
drengar 'good boys'
F. svart floga 'a black fly' - svartar
floger 'black flies'
N. blitt hjarta 'a kind heart' - blid
hjartu 'kind hearts'
NB! Don't confuse the endings of substantives and
adjectives! Masculine and feminine substantives may take either -ar
or -er in plural endings, while for adjectives
it is strictly -er for M and -ar
The following combinations are possible:
hviter hestar 'white horses' (M)
guler vegger 'yellow walls' (M)
langar ferder 'long journeys' (F)
blidar kerlingar 'kind-hearted old women'
Change the following adjectives to neuter:
los 'loose, free'
Change the following phrases to plural:
gul knotti (MW) 'ball'
3. Verbs. Present tense. Introduction.
We begin our study of the Nynorn verbal system with two very common verbs: at vara
'to be' and at heda 'to be called'.
At is a particle which means 'to' as in English 'to be' and is only used with infinitives.
There is another particle - ikke, which means 'not' and is always placed after the verb. Nynorn does
not have the form 'do not', ikke always
provides the negation alone:
at vara 'to be':
eg er - I am
du ert - you (sing.) are, thou art
hann/hun/dað er - he/she/it is
vi,di,dir eru - we/you (pl.)/they are
eg er ikke - I am not
du er ikke - you (sing.) are not etc.
Eg er mann. Hann er ikke hest. Hestar eru ikke guler.
I am a man. He is not a horse. Horses are not yellow.
NB! Adjectives after the word 'to be' agree with the
substantives in gender and number.
at heda 'to be called':
eg hedi - I am called, my name is
du heder - you (sing.) are called, your (sing.)
hann/hun/dað heder - he/she/it is called,
his/her/its name is
vi,di,dir heda - we/you (pl.)/they are called,
our/your (pl.)/their name is
eg hedi ikke - my name is not etc.
Eg hedi Magnus. Hon heder Astrid. Hann heder ikke
Torkel. De heder Hendrik og Maria. Hon er blid. Dað er røtt. Dir eru balder. Der
I am Magnus. Her name is Astrid. His name is not Torkel.
These are Hendrik and Maria. She is kind-hearted. It is red. They (M) are bold.
They (F) are bold.
Translate the following phrases:
Our names are Torsten and Bjarnhild. Your (sing.) name is
not Sunneva. You (sing.) are not a horse. You (pl.) are not horses.
Journeys are long. White horses are kind-hearted.
Discuss this lesson on the