The causative verbs in germanic languages are built upon the preterite of a strong verb. However there's one verb that seems to fall out of that scheme:

Swedish: vakna - väcka; German: (auf)wachen - (auf)wecken

What's up with it?

1 Answer 1


It's different in another way as well - as you can see from the English 'to wake' 'to waken'. Most causatives are created by adding an '-i' in Germanic see the English pairs 'drink/drench < *dranki-' (with i umlaut and palatalisation), 'sit/set < *sati-', 'lie/lay'; in 'wake/waken' an -n is added. This is an alternative mechanism for creating causatives, mebbe's related to the other 'n' verbs which create verbs out of adjectives such as 'hard/harden', 'weak/weaken' I suspect the reason why lies in the class of verbs - Germanic '*wakanan' is a class 6 strong verb.

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