As we know, adjectives are used to describe or modify how a noun is. There are also different types of adjectives in Slovene, but they can’t be directly translated into English:
- lastnostni (kakovostni) pridevnik (characteristic or qualitative adjective),
- svojilni pridevnik (possessive adjective) and
- vrstni pridevnik (“kind” adjective).
Lastnostni pridevniki or kakovostni pridevniki are descriptive adjectives. They are used to describe specific characteristic that are proper to the noun (color, size, age, shape) and answer the question kakšen (how is). For example,
- Vozim hiter avto4. (I drive a fast car).
- To je velika hiša1 (This is a big house).
- Kopali smo se v toplem morju5 (We swam in the warm sea).
As you can see, the adjective always follows the declension of the noun.
|To learn more about declension of adjective, read Slovene Adjectives in General.|
Svojilni pridevniki are possessive adjectives used to describe the ownership of the noun. They answer the question čigav (whose). For example,
- Tim vozi Markov traktor4 (Tim is driving Mark’s tractor).
- Mira je Janina sestra1 (Mira is Jana’s sister).
- Ne maram sosedovega psa2(I don’t like the neighbor’s dog).
As you can see, -ov + the corresponding ending is added to masculine nouns, while -in + the corresponding ending is added to feminine nouns.
|Please note that possessive adjectives are different from possessive pronouns. Learn more here.|
Vrstni pridevniki are adjectives “made from nouns”. They are also used to describe a noun, but specifically the “type”, “kind” or ”category”, which answer the question “kateri” (which). The adjective’s endings can be put into groups, but unfortunately without any patterns.
Adjectives ending with -ni
- turist (tourist) – turistični mesto (touristic town)
- jagoda (strawberry) – jagodna marmelada (strawberry jam)
- mesto (town) – mestni avtobus (city bus)
- čokolada (chocolate) – čokoladna torta (chocolate cake)
Adjectives ending with –ski or –ški
- morje (sea) – morski sadeži (seafood)
- Slovenija (Slovenia) – slovenska zastava (Slovenian flag)
- nedelja (Sunday) – nedeljsko kosilo (Sunday lunch)
- otrok (child) – otroško igrišče (children playground)
Adjectives ending with -ov
- oreh (walnut) – orehova potica (walnut potica)
- borovnica (blueberry) – borovničev sok (blueberry juice)
- sir (cheese) – sirov zavitek (cheese strudel)
- kokos (coconut) – kokosovo mleko (coconut milk)
Adjectives ending with -nji
- jutro (morning) – jutranje vaje (morning exercises)
- noter (interior) – notranji bazen (inside pool)
- jutri (tomorrow) – jutrišnji dan (tomorrow day)
- blizu (near) – bližnji vzhod (nearby exit)
Adjectives ending with -ji
- pes (dog) – pasji frizer (dog groomer)
- maček (cat) – mačja trava (catnip)
- medved (bear) – medvedja šapa (bear paw)
|The difference between lastnostni pridevnik and vrstni pridevnik is the question that they answer. Lastnostni pridevnik is used for description of shape, color, size and age, while vrstni pridevnik is used to describe the type or kind.|
Tim potuje po Sloveniji z novim modrim električnim avtom6 (Tim travels around Slovenia with a new blue electric car).
Dalia ne mara svežega kozjega mleka2 (Dalia doesn’t like fresh goat milk).
Martin rad je slastno mehiško hrano4 (Martin likes to eat delicious Mexican food).
Knowing that some adjectives can be made from noun is a fun and useful way to learn Slovene. It’s like killing two birds with one stone! With adjectives, no matter which type, do remember that the declension is the same as the noun. If you have any questions, comments or adjectives that you would like to add, please let me know!