Finnish greetings

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Woods
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Finnish greetings

Postby Woods » 2019-08-21, 22:45

Moi / moikka / moro / morjes / morjesta...

Did I miss something?

What is your attitude towards all those different greetings? I go with "hei" (actually I mean it as a "hey," but I guess the speaker has no way of knowing it's a universal / Swedish / English "hey/hej" and not a Finnish one, so it goes pretty well as a Finnish "hi" too...

I also sometimes say "moi," mainly as a response to another person saying hi this way to me, but I haven't used any of the other ones.

I wouldn't use "moikka," maybe because one of my colleagues uses it all the time and he's totally gay (in the bad sense of the word used to describe heterosexuals - no offense whatsoever is meant toward actual homosexuals). I've noticed some cool people use "moro," and I guess sometimes they feel like they need to change it up a little bit and come up with versions like "morjes," "morjesta" etc.

Which one would you recommend? :)

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Naava
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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby Naava » 2019-08-22, 12:10

First of all, I'm sure there's lots of variation in greetings and how they're perceived and used by people in different parts of the country. I'm speaking from an Southern Ostrobothnian point of view. If you asked from someone else, they might very well disagree with me.

Woods wrote:Moi / moikka / moro / morjes / morjesta...

Did I miss something?

Morjesta päivää, moi moi, päivää/iltaa/iltoja/ehtoota/huomenta/huomenia, moikkelis, moikkelis koikkelis, moi vaan, moro vaan, hei vaan, heips, helou, heissan, heipsan, hellurei (ja hellät tunteet), morjens, morjensta, terve, tere, tervepä terve, tere tere, terse, mo, mooi... The list goes on. I swear some people just make up their own greetings.

The safest to use are hei and moi because they are neutral and can be used in almost any situation. Terve works, too. It's maybe slightly more casual than hei or moi. Avoid moikkelis, moikkelis koikkelis, heips, heipsan, hellurei, terse, and mo. These all have potentiality to make people cringe. Morjes/morjens (and its derivatives) and tere are informal IMO so it's best if you don't say these to strangers. Päivää, iltaa, ehtoota, huomenta (and their plurals) are fine both with friends and strangers, but I think they're used mostly when you expect the person/people you're talking to haven't noticed you yet/don't know you're going to talk to them. For example, if I go to my brother's house, I could yell päivää at the door so they know I'm there. (We don't use doorbells with family, we just walk in.) Or if I go to buy a ticket or something, I could start with päivää (or whatever time of the day it is). Ehtoo is the Western Finnish word for 'evening'. If you add hyvää to any of these, they become much more formal.

Some of the greetings I listed are "answers" that you use when someone has greeted you first: moi moi, hei hei, hei vaan, moi vaan, tervepä terve, tere tere. Usually you answer with the same word you were greeted with, so:
"Moi!" "Moi moi!" ; "Hei!" "Hei vaan!" ; "Tere!" "Tere tere!" ; "Päivää!" "Päivää päivää!" and so on. Many of the greetings can be used both when greeting first or answering to a greeting: moi, moikka, hei, heippa, terve. Sometimes you can add no before the greeting: no hei, no heippa, no moi, no moikka, no terve, no hei vaan. IMO if you use it first, it can sound like "I'm (pleasantly) surprised to see you", and if you answer with it, it can sound less stiff than plain hei. I don't think there are strict rules, though, you just need to know the context and what feels natural and flowing in the moment. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

FYI: I think Swedish hej has more friction than Finnish hei. Wiktionary seems to agree with me: it gives the pronunciations /ˈhɛjː/ and /ˈhei̯/ for <hej> and <hei>.

Woods wrote:one of my colleagues uses it all the time and he's totally gay (in the bad sense of the word used to describe heterosexuals - no offense whatsoever is meant toward actual homosexuals

What is that supposed to mean? (It's also good to remember that the more you use a word in it's "bad sense", the more you strengthen its bad connotations.)

Woods wrote: I've noticed some cool people use "moro,"

This is stereotypically Tampere (and its nearby regions) greeting. Here's an example of it with the "proper" Tampere dialect pronunciation. ;) (Note: of course this doesn't mean it wouldn't be used anywhere else than in Tampere!) It's one of the informal ones, so you can use that with your friends but maybe not with strangers. It really depends on how formal you feel the context and your relationship is.

Also, some comments I found online:
► Show Spoiler

All in all, it really depends on the local culture and your own preferences which greetings you want to use. :D

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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby suruvaippa » 2019-08-28, 21:40

Naava wrote:
Woods wrote: I've noticed some cool people use "moro,"

This is stereotypically Tampere (and its nearby regions) greeting. Here's an example of it with the "proper" Tampere dialect pronunciation. ;) (Note: of course this doesn't mean it wouldn't be used anywhere else than in Tampere!) It's one of the informal ones, so you can use that with your friends but maybe not with strangers. It really depends on how formal you feel the context and your relationship is.


I honestly don't think I've ever heard "moro" pronounced that way in the ~15 months I've spent in Tampere. Either that or I just haven't been paying enough attention. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I've also heard of youth in other cities having reappropriated moro as a "cool" way to greet akin to yo in (American) English, which kind of amuses me as an uustamperelainen.

Avoid moikkelis, moikkelis koikkelis, heips, heipsan, hellurei, terse, and mo. These all have potentiality to make people cringe.


I seem to actually hear mo quite a lot and don't find it at all cringey (though as a non-native speaker, so take this with a grain of salt); heips seems to be somewhat common too. Agreed on the rest. I'd like to give the person who first popularized terse a good slap. Add moik to the list too.

I wouldn't use "moikka," maybe because one of my colleagues uses it all the time and he's totally gay (in the bad sense of the word used to describe heterosexuals - no offense whatsoever is meant toward actual homosexuals).


I've no clue at all what you meant with that second part, but I'm not aware of any kind of negative connotations associated with moikka.
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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby Vlürch » 2019-09-01, 14:16

By far the absolute supreme greeting of utmost perfection that is to be found within the Finnish language, which is truly criminally underused for reasons that even the wisest man on the planet could not even begin to speculate upon, is definitely and without exception morso.

...and in case it wasn't clear from the shitty attempt at verbose long-windedness, I'm just kidding. It can also be a greeting, but above all it's the name of an absolutely terrifying character [WARNING: NSFL] from a children's TV series that traumatised an entire generation. Ask anyone between the ages of 20 and 30 what the scariest thing on TV was and they'll probably say Morso. Like, Jesus Christ, it looks like Mason Verger from Hannibal; if they came out saying Mason's appearance in the film was inspired by Morso, I could legit believe it. :lol:

And when you consider that in Italian morso means "bite"... :hmm:
suruvaippa wrote:heips seems to be somewhat common too

Online, sure, but even then it's mostly used by female and feminine male vloggers and bloggers and whatnot. If you're a grown ass man who shows no clear signs of being gay or anything and say it in real life, people would at the very least cringe internally. (But some women do probably use it in real life, or at least one of the literally like 1.5 women I know uses it in text messages... not that text messages are real life, but they're closer to it than blogs or vlogs or whatever.)

I'm actually not sure if heippa is kinda cringy, too; it's one way to say "bye", the one I use the most myself. :hmm:

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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby Naava » 2019-09-01, 17:23

suruvaippa wrote:I honestly don't think I've ever heard "moro" pronounced that way in the ~15 months I've spent in Tampere. Either that or I just haven't been paying enough attention. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Or you've spent your time with the wrong people - you can hardly ever hear the traditional accent anymore except from 40-50+ year old people. :) I also think it's somewhat tied to your profession, so the more you're paid, the less likely you are to have a Tampere accent.

But it's not completely gone yet, since that girl in the video and some of my Tampere friends are able to do the accent. It's also possible that the dialect is still alive and I've just missed it because most of my friends have moved to Tampere from somewhere else.

suruvaippa wrote:
Avoid moikkelis, moikkelis koikkelis, heips, heipsan, hellurei, terse, and mo. These all have potentiality to make people cringe.


I seem to actually hear mo quite a lot and don't find it at all cringey (though as a non-native speaker, so take this with a grain of salt)

I didn't say those greetings are cringey, I only said they can be. It depends on the context and the person.

suruvaippa wrote:heips seems to be somewhat common too.

Vlürch wrote:But some women do probably use it in real life, or at least one of the literally like 1.5 women I know uses it in text messages..

I know more than 1.5 women yet I've never heard this in real life. :hmm: But like you, I've seen it in text sometimes.

suruvaippa wrote:I'd like to give the person who first popularized terse a good slap.

Vlürch wrote:By far the absolute supreme greeting of utmost perfection that is to be found within the Finnish language, which is truly criminally underused for reasons that even the wisest man on the planet could not even begin to speculate upon, is definitely and without exception morso.

Thanks, I hate you both. Those are awful.

Vlürch wrote: If you're a grown ass man who shows no clear signs of being gay or anything and say it in real life, people would at the very least cringe internally.

...how about heipsulivei?

Vlürch wrote: Like, Jesus Christ, it looks like Mason Verger from Hannibal; if they came out saying Mason's appearance in the film was inspired by Morso, I could legit believe it.

That thing is so fucking creepy that I have no idea what kind of a person could create something like that and go "yup, looks perfect for a kids' show!" What is it even supposed to be? There's a cat, a donkey, and a what? A love child of Mason Verger and a monkey...? :|
But to be fair, I swear all the 90's and early 00's kids' TV series were more or less traumatising. Good times, good times.

Vlürch wrote:I'm actually not sure if heippa is kinda cringy, too; it's one way to say "bye", the one I use the most myself.

I tend to use it with kids. I could imagine myself saying it to a friend after they've said hi to me first, too, especially if I haven't noticed them at first - but if I had to choose between heippa and moikka, I'd choose moikka both for greeting and for a 'bye'. (I also use hei ny [to one person] and heikää ny [two or more people] when leaving, but I haven't heard it outside of Southern Ostrobothnia.)

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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby suruvaippa » 2019-09-03, 19:13

Vlurch wrote:By far the absolute supreme greeting of utmost perfection that is to be found within the Finnish language, which is truly criminally underused for reasons that even the wisest man on the planet could not even begin to speculate upon, is definitely and without exception morso.


Assuming this was supposed to be sarcastic (if not, I'll ready the pitchforks), I see your morso and raise you a heipparallaa.

Naava wrote:...how about heipsulivei?


...what the hell is that monstrosity?
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Interested:   (smi)   (ka)   (ru)   (is)   (eu)

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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby Naava » 2019-09-03, 20:48

suruvaippa wrote:
Vlurch wrote:By far the absolute supreme greeting of utmost perfection that is to be found within the Finnish language, which is truly criminally underused for reasons that even the wisest man on the planet could not even begin to speculate upon, is definitely and without exception morso.


Assuming this was supposed to be sarcastic (if not, I'll ready the pitchforks), I see your morso and raise you a heipparallaa.

I see your morso and heipparallaa and raise you a heippatirallaa. Also, heipsansaa and heissansaa. Also also, what my dear mum likes to say: hellurei, kellä heiluu, kellä ei, and its alternative hei sun heiluvilles. She knows how horrible they both are and that's exactly why she uses them. (Not with strangers though. She's reserved them for family members.)

suruvaippa wrote:
Naava wrote:...how about heipsulivei?

...what the hell is that monstrosity?

:lol: I even found a perfect example of how to use it!

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Re: Finnish greetings

Postby suruvaippa » 2019-09-03, 23:51

Naava wrote:I see your morso and heipparallaa and raise you a heippatirallaa. Also, heipsansaa and heissansaa. Also also, what my dear mum likes to say: hellurei, kellä heiluu, kellä ei, and its alternative hei sun heiluvilles.


...heipsansaa?!? I can't even tell anymore whether we're one-upping each other's cheesy greetings or imitating a Finnish pre-teen trying to half-assedly transcribe the words to Ievan polkka.

Naava wrote:
suruvaippa wrote:
Naava wrote:...how about heipsulivei?

...what the hell is that monstrosity?

:lol: I even found a perfect example of how to use it!


Okay, I'm dead. :lol:
Native:   (en-us) C1:   (fi) A1:   (et)   (lt)   (es)
Interested:   (smi)   (ka)   (ru)   (is)   (eu)


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