Monday, July 24, 2017

Let's Learn Sinhalese in English 6


In English, you connect a noun (or a noun clause) to the sentence with a preposition, and the preposition with the attached noun is usually placed after the verb. However, you know that it can be placed in other places, like at the beginning. You can add as many prepositions as you want. You can do the same in Sinhala, but the usual place to put a preposition and its attached noun is after the doer (before the object).


Mama gedharata yanava: .
Mama yanava: gedharata.
(I am going to the house.)


Mama gedharakata yanava: .
Mama yanava: gedharakata.
(I am going to a house.)


Eya: Paris sita enava: .
Eya: enava: Paris sita.
(He is coming from Paris.)


Akka: malli ekka pa:ra dhige gamata yanava: .
Akka: malli ekka pa:ra dhige yanava: gamata.
Akka: malli ekka gamata yanava: pa:ra dhige.
Akka: malli ekka yanava: pa:ra dhige gamata.
Akka: pa:ra dhige gamata yanava: malli ekka .
Akka: gamata yanava: malli ekka  pa:ra dhige.
Akka: yanava: malli ekka  pa:ra dhige gamata.
(The elder sister is going with the little brother along the road to the village.)


Kurulla: ahase: piya:'mbanava: .
Kurulla: piya:'mbanava: ahase: .
(The bird is flying in the sky.)


Kurulla: ahase: nidahase: piya:'mbanava: .
(The bird is flying freely in the sky.)


Now let's learn how to say what happened in the past (that is, we are now going to learn about past tense). Only the verb is modified to form the past time of the tense we have been learning and using so far. There is a set of rules to show how the verb is modified (or how the past tense derived from the verb root). However, as I have mentioned several times before too, the easy way out is to know a few verbs and identify the simple patterns yourself. Following is a list of some verbs in present and past tense.



Verb (present) 
Verb (past)
Meaning (past)
karanava:
kala: / keruva:
did
ma:ru karanava:
ma:ru kala:
changed, exchanged
sellam karanava:
sellam keruva:
played
kalavam karanava:
kalavam kala:
mixed
katha: karanava:
katha: kala:
talked
venava:
vuna:
was/were (as in "it was good"), became, happened
thuva:la venava:
thuva:la vuna:
hurt, injured
narak venava:
narak vuna:
spoilt, rotted, decayed, became bad
loku venava:
loku vuna:
grew
hina: venava:
hina: vuna:
laughed
nathara venava:
nathara vuna:
stopped
innava:
hitiya:
was/were (as in "I was in the class room")
thiyenava:
thibuna:
had
dhamanava:
dhaemma:
put
kapanava:
kaepuva:
cut (past)
yanava:
giya:
went
enava:
a:va:
came
dhenava:
dhunna:
gave
gannava:
gaththa:
took
hi'mda gannava:
hi'mda  gaththa:
sat
patan gannava:
patan gaththa:
started
balanava:
baeluva:
looked
dakinava:
daekka:
saw
liyanava:
livva:
wrote
kiyavanava:
kiyevva:
read (past)
kanava:               
     kae:va:
ate
hadanava:
haeduva:
made
hithanava:
hithuva:
thought
kadanava:
kaeduva:
broke
baninava:
baenna:
scolded
a'mdanava:

ae'mduva:

cried


                               

A large number of common verbs end with "karanava", "venava" (like, "sellam karanava:", "thuva:la venava:") so they all change in the same way. Initially, you may feel that Sinhala has lots of irregular verbs (English has around 160 irregular verbs). Definitely you will notice nice and easy patterns while you keep memorizing the verbs. 


mama e:ka kala: . (I did it.)


eya: bath kae:va: . (He ate rice.)


api hodhi ekka pa:n kae:va: . (We ate bread with curry.)


gahak kaepuva: . (A tree was cut.)


Let's see how to construct the other variants of this positive statement. Constructing the positive question is very easy; just append "-dha" at the end of the past tense verb.


mama e:ka kala:dha? (Did I do it?)


eya: bath kae:va:dha? (Did he/she eat rice?)


api hodhi ekka pa:n kae:va:dha? (Did we eat bread with curry?)


gahak kaepuva:dha? (Was a tree cut?)


To make the negative statement, put "naehae" after the past tense verb. In addition, you have to change the verb form a bit like this. The ending "a:" vowel sound is changed to "e:".


mama e:ka kale: naehae. (I did not do it.)


eya: bath kae:ve: naehae. (He/She did not eat rice.)


api hodhi ekka pa:n kae:ve: naehae. (We did not eat bread with curry.)


gahak kaepuwe: naehae. (A tree was not cut.)


To make the negative question, as usual you just change "nahae" of the negative statement to "naedhdha".


mama e:ka kale: naedhdha? (Did I not do it?)


eya: bath kae:ve: naedhdha? (Did she/he not eat rice?)


api hodhi ekka pa:n kae:ve: naedhdha? (Did we not eat bread with curry?)


gahak kaepuwe: naedhdha? (Was a tree not cut?)


In the same way you have learnt before, you can construct the two tag questions.


mama e:ka kala: ne:dha? (I did it. Didn't I?)


eya: bath kae:ve: naehae ne:dha? (She/He ate rice. Didn't she?)


api hodhi ekka pa:n kae:va: ne:dha? (We ate bread with curry. Didn't we?)


gahak kaepuwa: ne:dha? (A tree was cut. Wasn't it?)


In sinhala, some verbs denote a deliberate action (by the doer) like yanava: (go), enava: (come), karanava: (do). Let's call this first category of verbs "intentional verbs". Some verbs denote some indeliberate/unintentional action like vaetenava: (fall), maerenava: (die), laebenava: (get). Let's call this second category of verbs "automatic verbs". You must already have seen that almost all automatic verbs end with "-enava".


Now let's learn how to make an adjective out of a verb - actually two adjectives. In English too, you have these two adjectives made in the same way.


You take a "-nava:" verb, and just remove the ending "va:" syllable. That will be a word behaving like an adjective now. The meaning is similar to present participle (as an adjective) in English.


karanava: -> karana (doing)

balanava: -> balana (looking)

kanava: -> kana (eating)

yanava: -> yana (going)

vaetenava: -> vaetena (falling)


The other form of adjective is constructed by removing the "-nava:" ending of the verb (intentional verb), and then appending "-pu" to it. The meaning is similar to the past participle (as an adjective) in English.


karanava: -> karapu (done)

balanava: -> balapu (looked)

kanava: -> ka:pu (eaten)

soyanava: -> soyapu (sought)


If it is an automatic verb (described above), then you remove "enava:" and append "-unu" or "-ichcha".


vaetenava: -> vaetunu or vaetichcha (fallen)

venava: -> vunu or vechcha (become, happened)

maerenava: -> maerunu or maerichcha (dead, died)

kadenava: -> kaedunu or kaedichcha (broken)

ipadhenava: -> ipadhunu or ipadhichcha (born)


There are some irregular instances too. Following is a list of such irregular forms.


bonava: -> bi:pu (drunk)

yanava: -> gihipu (gone)

gannava: -> gaththu, ganipu (taken)

dhenava: -> dhi:pu (given)

dhakinava: -> dhaekapu (seen)

arinava: -> aerapu (opened)


Let's make some sentences using such adjectives.


a'mdana lamaya: toffee kanava: . (The crying child is eating toffees.)


sellam karana lamai dhaen yannava: . (The playing children are going now.)


a'mdapu lamaya: dhaen hina:venava: . (The cried child is laughing now.)


         vaetichcha/vaetunu gaha geniyanava: . (The fallen tree is carried.)

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