Languages

Turkish

Fact corner

Introduction

Turkish is spoken as a first language by over 63 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Cyprus, with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Albania and other parts of Eastern Europe. Turkish is also spoken by several million immigrants in Western Europe, particularly in Germany.

The distinctive characteristics of Turkish are vowel harmony and extensive agglutination.

The verb

Turkish verbs indicate person. They can be made negative, potential ("can"), or impotential ("cannot"). Furthermore, Turkish verbs show tense (present, past, inferential, future, and aorist), mood (conditional, imperative, necessitative, and optative), and aspect. Negation is expressed by the infix -me- immediately following the stem.

The verbs are regular and can be conjugated at www.verbix.com.

The Copula

There is a defectice verb, whose stem is i- and which means "be". The missing forms of i- are supplied by ol-: the infinitive olmak is an example, since there is no infinitive *imek.

The following table shows the enclitic and independent forms where the stem i- is applied.

Enclitic forms1 Independent forms
Present Past Past Past Conditional Past Inferential Past Inferential Conditional
Sg.1 Izmir'deyim Izmir'deydim idim idiysem imişim imişsem
Sg.2 Izmir'desin Izmir'deydin idin idiysen imişin imişsen
Sg.3 Izmir'de(dir) Izmir'deydi idi idiyse imiş imişse
Pl.1 Izmir'deyiz Izmir'deydik idik idiysek imişiz imişsek
Pl.2 Izmir'desiniz Izmir'deydiniz idiniz idiysek imişsiniz imişseniz
Pl.3 Izmir'de(dir)ler Izmir'deydiler idiler idiyseler imişler imişseler

Notes:

  1. Enclitic forms are added in the main word; In this sample to Izmir-de 'in Izmir'. Thus, Izmir'deyim 'I am in Izmir', etc.

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