This is the first of two posts on Hypervowels. If you are comfortable with this lesson, feel free to check out the more advanced post here.
In Finngreek, Hypervowels are vowels that can represent more than one sound. They are parent vowels to their children vowels. Let’s take a closer look:
Ææ: a + e
Åå: a + o
We can see that ‘a’ is present in both of these hypervowels. In Finngreek, the letter A is the most common vowel. It expresses being someone, or doing something, or the way something is. It is part of every sentence, whether you see it or not.
A hypervowel illustrates the relation – and middle point – between two “related” vowels. The hypervowel “ae” literally represents a chain relation between “a” and “e”: A-AE-E. Likewise, “ao” represents a chain relation between “a” and “o”: A-AO-O.
Whenever hypervowels occur, the vowel can be written multiple ways. This may seem confusing at first, but it is easy to learn:
I want food: Heloma rahito > Haelaomae raohitao / Hælåmæ råhitå
It is not necessary to learn how to write in hypervowels, because they are natural patterns that you will recognize over time just from learning Finngreek. However, as I explain in the later post, hypervowels are necessary for understanding the potential for relatedness between Finnish and Greek words. They also explain some of the variety which contributes to poikilia poikitse.