sestir wrote:Question: The suffix -lig (En: -ly) is commonly believed to be an abbreviation for lik (like). However many adverbs in Swedish have the suffix -ligen with two extra letters. What is that?
Example words: verkligen (really), storligen(verily), vanligen (commonly)
In Modern Swedish, adjectives in –lig (vanlig) often form adverbs in –ligen (vanligen). This is different from the normal pattern, where adjectives form adverbs (usually adverbs of manner) simply by using the neuter singular indefinite (snabb > snabbt). This include adjectives with the similar but unrelated suffix –ig
, which form can form adjectives in –igt
but typically not in –igen
(though there are a few archaic examples: behörigen, saligen
Adjectives in –lig
often also form adverbs in –ligt
. I don't actually think the –ligen
pattern is that productive in present day Swedish, but the –ligt
pattern is. There may be a difference in meaning between the two. Adverbs in –ligt
are usually adverbs of manner with a relatively transparent semantic relationship to the adjective. "Jag skriver vanligt"
‘I write in an ordinary manner’, besides "Jag skriver vanligen"
‘I usually write’ (< vanlig ‘common, ordinary, usual’). "Jag skriver tydligt" ‘I write clearly’ besides "Jag skriver tydligen" ‘Apparently, I write’ (< tydlig ‘clear, unambiguous, obvious’).
The suffix –lig
is almost certainly related to sv. lik
, eng. like
, and was originally just a part of a compound word. Old Swedish had adjectives in –liker
(declined like regular adjectives), later weakened to –ligher
, corresponding to Old Icelandic adjectives in –ligr
(with the /k/ already weakened to [ɣ]) and Old English adjectives in -līċ
. Old Swedish also had adverbs in –lika
), corresponding to Old Icelandic adverbs in –liga
and Old English adverbs in -līċe.
The suffix –ligen
) is found sporadically in writing from the 15th century and is borrowed from Low German –liken
. In Low German, the ending –en is used more generally to form adverbs from adjectives but Swedish mostly borrowed it only as part of the ending –ligen
. I'm not sure about the further origin of this ending –en
Adverbs in –lika
are still common in the Gustav Vasa Bible (published in 1540-41), with forms such as storligha, gladhliga, rätteligha
etc., cf. eng. gladly
. But later, these forms weakened to –ligh
or just –li
. These endings were then replaced by the borrowed ending –liken
. I don't think Modern Standard Swedish has any adverbs in –liga
sestir wrote:However, there is also an -en suffix for adjectives (ON -inn). Scandinavian: kräsen, galen, kelen. English: heathen.
I'm not sure if this ending is related to the –en
in Low German –liken
, it could be.