Arabic Grammar – 190

Click to view table of contents

Suffix & prefix conjugation

The conjugation for person, number, gender and mood is done by changing a suffix and a prefix attached to the verb stem without changing the stem itself, except for irregularly conjugated verbs.

In the table below, Sᵖ represents the perfective stem and Sⁱ represents the imperfective stem.

Person, number, gender and mood conjugation
Perfective Imperfective
Realis Irrealis
Indicative Energetic Subjunctive Jussive Imperative Energetic imperative
1ˢᵗ Sing. ∅-Sᵖ-tu ʔ-Sⁱ-u ʔ-Sⁱ-an(na) ʔ-Sⁱ-a ʔ-Sⁱ-∅
Plur. ∅-Sᵖ-nȃ n-Sⁱ-u n-Sⁱ-an(na) n-Sⁱ-a n-Sⁱ-∅
2ⁿᵈ Sing. Masc. ∅-Sᵖ-ta t-Sⁱ-u t-Sⁱ-an(na) t-Sⁱ-a t-Sⁱ-∅ ∅-Sⁱ-∅ ∅-Sⁱ-an(na)
Fem. ∅-Sᵖ-ti t-Sⁱ-ȋna t-Sⁱ-in(na) t-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ-in(na)
Dual ∅-Sᵖ-tumȃ t-Sⁱ-ȃni t-Sⁱ-ȃnni t-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ-ȃnni
Plur. Masc. ∅-Sᵖ-tum(u) t-Sⁱ-ȗna t-Sⁱ-un(na) t-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ ∅-Sⁱ-un(na)
Fem. ∅-Sᵖ-tunna t-Sⁱ-na t-Sⁱ-nȃnni t-Sⁱ-na ∅-Sⁱ-na ∅-Sⁱ-nȃnni
3ʳᵈ Sing. Masc. ∅-Sᵖ-a y-Sⁱ-u y-Sⁱ-an(na) y-Sⁱ-a y-Sⁱ-∅
Fem. ∅-Sᵖ-at t-Sⁱ-u t-Sⁱ-an(na) t-Sⁱ-a t-Sⁱ-∅
Dual Masc. ∅-Sᵖ y-Sⁱ-ȃni y-Sⁱ-ȃnni y-Sⁱ
Fem. ∅-Sᵖ-atȃ t-Sⁱ-ȃni t-Sⁱ-ȃnni t-Sⁱ
Plur. Masc. ∅-Sᵖ y-Sⁱ-ȗna y-Sⁱ-un(na) y-Sⁱ
Fem. ∅-Sᵖ-na y-Sⁱ-na y-Sⁱ-nȃnni y-Sⁱ-na

 

Perfective verbs

Each perfective verb has a conjugational suffix that determines its person, number and gender. Perfective verbs are not conjugated for mood, which makes the conjugation of these verbs much simpler than the imperfective.

As an example, following is the full perfective paradigm of the verb faʕala فَعَلَ “he did.”

Singular Dual Plural
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
1ˢᵗ person فَعَلْتُ
faʕaltu
“I did”
فَعَلْنا
faʕal
“we did”
2ⁿᵈ person فَعَلْتَ
faʕalta
“you male did”
فَعَلْتِ
faʕalti
“you female did”
فَعَلْتُما
faʕaltumȃ
“you two did”
فَعَلْتُمْ
faʕaltum
“you all males did”
فَعَلْتُنَّ
faʕaltunna
“you all females did”
3ʳᵈ person فَعَلَ
faʕala
“he did”
فَعَلَتْ
faʕalat
“she did”
فَعَلا
faʕalȃ
“they two males did”
فَعَلَتا
faʕalatȃ
“they two females did”
فَعَلُوْا
faʕalȗ
“they all males did”
فَعَلْنَ
faʕalna
“they all females did”

If you don’t know the gender of the person or thing you are talking about or talking to, you use a masculine form. If you are talking about/to a pair or group of mixed gender, you use masculine forms.

Another example, the full perfective paradigm of the verb ʔ·istaʕmala اِسْتَعْمَلَ “he employed, used.”

Singular Dual Plural
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
1ˢᵗ person اِسْتَعْمَلْتُ
ʔ·istaʕmaltu
“I used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْنا
ʔ·istaʕmal
“we used”
2ⁿᵈ person اِسْتَعْمَلْتَ
ʔ·istaʕmalta
“you male used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْتِ
ʔ·istaʕmalti
“you female used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْتُما
ʔ·istaʕmaltumȃ
“you two used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْتُمْ
ʔ·istaʕmaltum
“you all males used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْتُنَّ
ʔ·istaʕmaltunna
“you all females used”
3ʳᵈ person اِسْتَعْمَلَ
ʔ·istaʕmala
“he used”
اِسْتَعْمَلَتْ
ʔ·istaʕmalat
“she used”
اِسْتَعْمَلا
ʔ·istaʕmalȃ
“they two males used”
اِسْتَعْمَلَتا
ʔ·istaʕmalatȃ
“they two females used”
اِسْتَعْمَلُوْا
ʔ·istaʕmalȗ
“they all males used”
اِسْتَعْمَلْنَ
ʔ·istaʕmalna
“they all females used”

 

Imperfective verbs

Imperfective verbs differs from perfective verbs in having a conjugational prefix besides the suffix and in being conjugated for mood.

The moods can be classified into realis and irrealis moods. The realis moods indicate that the speaker talks about events that happened, happen, or will happen. The irrealis moods indicate that the speaker talks about events that may or may not have happened, happen, or will happen.

Realis moods

The Arabic realis moods are the indicative الْمَرْفُوْعُ and the energetic الْمُوَكَّدُ بِالنُّوْنِ . The energetic indicates that the speaker emphasizes what they say. The use of the energetic is common in Classical Arabic but not in modern Arabic.

Following is the full indicative paradigm of the verb yafʕalu يَفْعَلُ “he does.”

Indicative
Singular Dual Plural
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
1ˢᵗ person أَفْعَلُ
ʔafʕalu
“I do”
نَفْعَلُ
nafʕalu
“we do”
2ⁿᵈ person تَفْعَلُ
tafʕalu
“you male do”
تَفْعَلِيْنَ
tafʕalȋna
“you female do”
تَفْعَلانِ
tafʕalȃni
“you two do”
تَفْعَلُوْنَ
tafʕalȗna
“you all males do”
تَفْعَلْنَ
tafʕalna
“you all females do”
3ʳᵈ person يَفْعَلُ
yafʕalu
“he does”
تَفْعَلُ
tafʕalu
“she does”
يَفْعَلانِ
yafʕalȃni
“they two males do”
تَفْعَلانِ
tafʕalȃni
“they two females do”
يَفْعَلُوْنَ
yafʕalȗna
“they all males do”
يَفْعَلْنَ
yafʕalna
“they all females do”

 

The energetic ending (called the nȗn of emphasis نُوْنُ التَّوْكِيْدِ) has two varieties in all but the dual and feminine plural conjugations, a short variety called light الْخَفِيْفةُ and a long variety called heavy الثَّقِيْلةُ .

Energetic, light
Singular Dual Plural
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
1ˢᵗ person أَفْعَلَنْ
ʔafʕalan
“I surely do”
نَفْعَلَنْ
nafʕalan
“we surely do”
2ⁿᵈ person تَفْعَلَنْ
tafʕalan
“you male surely do”
تَفْعَلِنْ
tafʕalin
“you female surely do”
تَفْعَلانِّ
tafʕalȃnni
“you two surely do”
تَفْعَلُنْ
tafʕalun
“you all males surely do”
تَفْعَلْنانِّ
tafʕalnȃnni
“you all females surely do”
3ʳᵈ person يَفْعَلَنْ
yafʕalan
“he surely does”
تَفْعَلَنْ
tafʕalan
“she surely does”
يَفْعَلانِّ
yafʕalȃnni
“they two males surely do”
تَفْعَلانِّ
tafʕalȃnni
“they two females surely do”
يَفْعَلُنْ
yafʕalun
“they all males surely do”
يَفْعَلْنانِّ
yafʕalnȃnni
“they all females surely do”
Energetic, heavy
Singular Dual Plural
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
1ˢᵗ person أَفْعَلَنَّ
ʔafʕalanna
“I surely do”
نَفْعَلَنَّ
nafʕalanna
“we surely do”
2ⁿᵈ person تَفْعَلَنَّ
tafʕalanna
“you male surely do”
تَفْعَلِنَّ
tafʕalinna
“you female surely do”
تَفْعَلانِّ
tafʕalȃnni
“you two surely do”
تَفْعَلُنَّ
tafʕalunna
“you all males surely do”
تَفْعَلْنانِّ
tafʕalnȃnni
“you all females surely do”
3ʳᵈ person يَفْعَلَنَّ
yafʕalanna
“he surely does”
تَفْعَلَنَّ
tafʕalanna
“she surely does”
يَفْعَلانِّ
yafʕalȃnni
“they two males surely do”
تَفْعَلانِّ
tafʕalȃnni
“they two females surely do”
يَفْعَلُنَّ
yafʕalunna
“they all males surely do”
يَفْعَلْنانِّ
yafʕalnȃnni
“they all females surely do”

Irrealis moods

The conjugation of imperfective verbs differ from the conjugation of the perfective verbs in two points:

There are prefixes in addition to the suffixes.

There is conjugation for mood, and one of the moods, namely the imperative, involves a little change in the stem.

However, stems endings with a double consonant (Ⅸ, Ⅺ & QⅣ) vary slightly in shape according to whether the ending many languages will find it strange that there are seperate masculine and feminine forms

Note that imperative imperfective verbs cannot be conjugated for the passive voice.

just like stems of roots Ⅱ = Ⅲ,

An imperfective verb has a conjugational prefix besides the suffix. An issue with the imperfective conjugation is that the suffix or/and prefix can be dropped completely in some modal conjugations. When the prefix is dropped, the prefix vowel of the stem is also dropped (because this vowel is really part of the prefix). This dropping is an issue because it can cause some stems to begin or end with consonant clusters, which is not allowed in Arabic phonology. Whenever a conjugational suffix or prefix is dropped and a consonant cluster arises, a prosthetic vowel must be added at the end or beginning of the stem accordingly. The prosthetic vowel at the end can always have the value a, although there are other possibilities in Classical Arabic. The prosthetic vowel at the beginning will be u if the vowel following it in the stem is u, and will be i otherwise Because Arabic words cannot begin with vowels, a prosthetic ʔ· must also be added before an initial prosthetic vowel.

The following table illustrates these issues by showing how the imperative conjugation is formed for some stems.

Stem Indicative Imperative
Ⅰ (a-u) يَكْتُبُ اُكْتُبْ
yaktubu
“he writes”
**ktub > ʔ·uktub
“you write!”
Ⅰ (a-i) يَكْسِرُ اِكْسِرْ
yaksiru
“he breaks”
**ksir > ʔ·iksir
“you break!”
Ⅰ (a-a) يَذْهَبُ اِذْهَبْ
yaðhabu
“he goes”
**ðhab > ʔ·iðhab
“you go!”
يَنْكَسِرُ اِنْكَسِرْ
yankasiru
“he breaks (intr.)”
**nkasir > ʔ·inkasir
“you break (intr.)!”
يَكْتَشِفُ اِكْتَشِفْ
yaktašifu
“he discovers”
**ktašif > ʔ·iktašif
“you discover!”
يَبْيَضُّ اِبْيَضَّ
yabyaḍu
“he whitens up (intr.)”
**byaḍ > ʔ·ibyaḍa
“you whiten up!”
QⅣ يَقْشَعِرُّ اِقْشَعِرَّ
yaaʕirru
“he becomes gooseflesh”
**aʕirr > ʔ·iaʕirra
“you become gooseflesh!”

 

PreviousNext

Advertisements

اترك رد

إملأ الحقول أدناه بالمعلومات المناسبة أو إضغط على إحدى الأيقونات لتسجيل الدخول:

WordPress.com Logo

أنت تعلق بإستخدام حساب WordPress.com. تسجيل خروج   / تغيير )

صورة تويتر

أنت تعلق بإستخدام حساب Twitter. تسجيل خروج   / تغيير )

Facebook photo

أنت تعلق بإستخدام حساب Facebook. تسجيل خروج   / تغيير )

Google+ photo

أنت تعلق بإستخدام حساب Google+. تسجيل خروج   / تغيير )

Connecting to %s