Sunday, November 11, 2012

Imperative Mood of Verbs

Verbs in Azerbaijani have imperative mood; it is used to command or ask for something. You can make a singular imperative of any verb by eliminating the suffix of the infinitive (-maq, -mək). Once you do that you will get the root of the verb.  For example:

Getmək = to go. Get. = Go.
Oturmaq = to sit. Otur. = Sit (down).
Təslim olmaq = to surrender.  Təslim ol! = Surrender!

[Should you buy apples? Wait and see...]

The plural of the imperative mood can be built by adding -ın4 to the end of root. For example:

Get = Go. Ged+in = You (plural) go.
Otur = Sit. Otur+un = Sit (all of you).
Təslim ol = surrender. Təslim ol+un = All of you, surrender.

The singular negative of the imperative mood can be made by eliminating the last letter, “k” or “q”, from the infinitive form of a verb. For example:

Getmək = to go. Getmə = Don’t go.
Oturmaq = to sit. Oturma = Don’t sit.
Təslim olmaq = to surrender. Təslim olma! = Don’t surrender!

The plural of the negative imperative is built by adding -ın4 to the root after eliminating the “k” or "q". For example:

Getmək = to go. Getmə = don't go. Getməy+in = Don’t go (you plural).
Təslim olmaq = to surrender. Təslim olma = don’t surrender. Təslim olmay+ın = Don’t surrender (you plural.

As a general and somewhat reliable rule, when you pronounce imperative verbs, make sure you stress or put  the accent either on the first (mostly in two syllable verbs) or second syllable (mostly in verbs with three syllables). Sometimes, (especially in long words) the accent is on the second-to-last syllable, but never on the last syllable. If you stress the last syllable it will change meaning of word (it happens only in negative singular imperative) due to another suffix (-ma2) whose pronunciation and spelling is identical with the negative singular imperative but whose function is totally different. The only way to differentiate those two from one another in spoken language is by stress/accent and the context of your speech. In the example below, bold syllables are where stress should be for intended meaning of each word:

Qızdırma = don’t heat (verb)
Qızdırma = fever (noun)
Toxunma = don't touch (verb)
Toxunma = touching
Gülmə = don’t laugh (verb)
Gül = laughing (noun)
Ölmə = don’t die (verb)
Öl = dying (known)
Alma = don’t buy/take (verb)
Alma = apple (noun)

Here is a sentence demonstrating that principle: Alma alma = Don't buy apples.

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