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The verb "pitää" has many meanings. Here's the ones that came to mind the first:

1. Pitää + mistä
Minä pidän sinusta. = I like you.
Me pidämme suklaajäätelöstä. = We like chocolate ice cream.

2. Pitää kiinni + mistä
Pidä minusta kiinni! = Take/keep hold of me!
Minä pidän hänestä kiinni. = I keep hold of him.

3. Pitää + partitiivi
Minä pidän talvella kaulaliinaa. = I wear a scarf in winter.
Kotona pidän aina tossuja. = I always wear slippers as home.

4. Genetive + pitää
Minun pitää lähteä nyt. = I have to leave now.
Sinun pitää levätä paljon. = You have to rest a lot.

5. Pitää + partitive + essive
Pidän häntä hyvänä ystävänä. = I consider him a good neighbour.
Pidämme sitä itsestäänselvyytenä. = We consider it to be self-evident.

The point of this list is not to give you a list to learn by heart. It doesn't really work that way. If you're a beginner, you will need 1 and 4 the most, and you can for the moment forget the rest. If you're a bit more advanced, you should probably read these attentive and realize that pitää kan mean many things in different situations. What those meanings exactly are is something you learn little by little. It takes a while to get used to all these meanings, I guess, but once you do, they will seem obvious :) Patience, young grasshopper!


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 3rd, 2011 09:32 am (UTC)
I was wondering, you know in English how you can say something like:

"I keep thinking it's him!"


"He keeps putting the books back in the wrong order"

can you use pitää in that sense?
Jun. 3rd, 2011 09:43 am (UTC)
No, you can't use pitää in that sense..

I had a really hard time thinking of a good translation for the first! In the end, this is the best I could come up with: "Luulen häntä koko ajan Sepoksi/Matiksi/Harriksi."

And the second:
"Hän laittaa jatkuvasti kirjat väärässä järjestyksessä."

Most of the time, I think you have to use "jatkuvasti" or "koko ajan" to express the same thing..
Jun. 3rd, 2011 10:46 am (UTC)
Ahh selvä :3
Jun. 3rd, 2011 06:08 pm (UTC)
Heh. It does well on the rest of them, but Translator Free thinks that Minä pidän hänestä kiinni means "I like her stick".
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )