from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun strength of will; determination; perseverance; regarded as an integral part of Finnish culture


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Finnish, documented in English since at least 1940.


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  • Meeri Zetterstrom once told a reporter it was "sisu" - a Finnish word she translated into English as stubbornness - that was at the heart of her success.

  • Because they live in a harsh environment, they say, they believe in planning, and in tools -- and in a virtue called sisu, which is hard to translate but involves self-reliance and a kind of frontier spirit.

    The Lure Of The Sampo

  • The perceived inequalities of the IRB's ranking system stirs the passions of 'sisu' - a Finnish word loosely defined as fighting spirit - in the national team's players, whatever their country of origin.

    The Full Feed from

  • ASK Finns about their national character and chances are the word sisu will come up.

    The Economist: Correspondent's diary

  • The former Belgian premier touched on the financial crisis that Finland experienced in the beginning of 1990s and noted how it pulled through with "determination and 'sisu' - a new (Finnish) word for me - or perseverance," he said.

    The Earth Times Online Newspaper

  • Filmi on ilmselt näinud igaüks ning seetõttu tundub sisu tutvustamine üsna absurdne tegevus.

    Predator (1987)

  • Having Finnish "sisu" must have been a great help.

    The Nobel Peace Prize 2008 - Presentation Speech

  • Sometimes they called her "Shirl the Pearl" and in the language of her Finnish ancestors everyone said she was blessed with 'sisu' or fortitude.

    Rep. Rosa DeLauro: Fixing Our Food Safety System

  • Though a bit undersized, Pihlstrom plays with energy and what the Finns call "sisu".

    Hockey's Future

  • Instead of the rapid Blitzkrieg type victory Stalin's high command predicted, the ill-prepared and poorly led Soviet Army marched into a frozen, desolate meat-grinder, learning the meaning of "sisu", a Finnish term that could be roughly translated as strength of will, determination, perseverance, and acting rationally in the face of adversity.

    Softpedia - Windows - All


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  • "'In winter,' says Hannalinna, 'I light a lot of candles, a lot of fires. You need a bit of sisu.' Yes, sisu, that untranslatable, indispensable Finnish concept, a combination of physical, mental and spiritual stamina, a going inwards to a core of strength in the face of solitary adversity. It's a word I've often thought would serve well in Australia, for the pioneers, the wood splitters and early farmers, except that I think the cold and dark are an indispensable part of the sisu mix."

    - 'The Arctic Oz' in GW, Guy Rundle, 23 Feb 2008.

    February 26, 2008

  • That's a great word. Thanks bilby. I think I could use some sisu today...

    February 26, 2008

  • Sisu (Finnish deriv.) possessing mettle or verve

    April 2, 2009

  • A Finn, if you press him, resists you;

    Compliance is always at issue.

    Despite your appeals

    He digs in his heels

    To show he has true Finnish sisu.

    February 15, 2018

  • Or her.

    February 15, 2018