Languages

Estonian

Fact corner

Introduction

Estonian is the official language of Estonia. It is a Finnic language and is closely related to Finnish.

A feature that sets Estonian apart from most languages is the vowel õ ([ɤ]), a close-mid near-back unrounded vowel, which is farther back than the schwa ([ə]), but unrounded unlike [o].

The Verb

Verb conjugation of Estonian follows to a great extent that of Finnish.

The verbal system lacks a distinctive future tense (the present tense serves here) and features special forms to express an action performed by an undetermined subject (the "impersonal").

Sample verb: elada 'to live'

INDICATIVE CONDITIONAL IMPERATIVE
Present Past
Sg.1 elan elasin elaksin -
Sg.2 elad elasid elaksid ela
Sg.3 elab elas elaks elagu
Pl.1 elame elasime elaksime elagem
Pl.2 elate elasite elaksite elage
Pl.3 elavad elasid elaksid elagu

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