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Lesson Transcript

Mohammad: Hi everyone! This is Mohammad!
Becky: Hello everyone, and welcome back to PersianPod101.com. This is All About, Lesson 3 - Painless Persian Grammar. I’m Becky.
Mohammad: In this lesson, you’ll learn the basics of Persian Grammar.
Becky: That’s right, we’ll just be giving a basic overview. So let’s jump right in.

Lesson focus

Mohammad: First, let’s talk about words in Persian.
Becky: Persian words usually consist of one or more syllables, right?
Mohammad: Yes, and every one of the syllables must have one vowel.
Becky: What about the order of words in a sentence? What’s it like compared to English?
Mohammad: It's slightly different to English, with the subject at the beginning, and the verb at the end. All other parts known as the predicate - such as the object - come in between these two.
Becky: So verbs have to be last in a sentence, right?
Mohammad: That’s right. Now let’s talk a little more about how verbs conjugate.
Becky: Ok. Well, verbs have tenses, attached pronouns, singular/plural forms, and time. Also, like many other languages, they contain - passive/active, transitive/intransitive, simple/compound, auxiliary/lexical, and other forms. If you are wondering how to determine the differences of time and form in Persian, here’s the answer: by adding prefixes and attached pronoun suffixes.
Mohammad: Yes. By adding "Mi" before the verb, the present form is made, like "Miravam" meaning " I go". By adding "Be" instead, the conditional form is created, like "Beravam" meaning "If I go". And if we add "Ne" before "Mi", we'll have the negative present tense, like "Nemiravam" meaning "I don't go".
Becky: So the prefix plus base of the verb determines the verb's time. The past tense base doesn't need a prefix. The present tense is formed by using "Mi" plus the present base.
Mohammad: The future tense is made by adding "Khah" as a verb conjugation to the past tense base. Let's have an example with a sentence to see both word order and verb tense.
Becky: Ok, what’s "Yesterday I went to my friend's house” in Persian?
Mohammad: You can say "Man diruz be khaneye doostam raftam". "Man" means "I" which is the subject, and comes first. "Diruz" means "Yesterday", "Be" is the preposition meaning "To", and "Khane" is "House". "Ye" is "Of", and "Doostam" means "My friend".
Becky: So in Persian all of these words come after the subject and before the verb, right?
Mohammad: Right. That’s why the verb "Raftam" was placed last in the sentence. It’s the past tense of the verb "To Go" but only used for "I", the singular first person. We understand the person by the "Am" pronoun suffix, that’s attached to the base of the verb, which is "Raft". We'll learn this suffix next with pronouns.
Becky: How would you say this sentence in the future tense? So, “Tomorrow, I’m going to my friend’s house.”
Mohammad: It would go like like this: "Man farda be khaneye doostam khaham raft". "Farda" means "Tomorrow", and "Khaham raft" meaning “Will go” is the verb "Khah", plus the "Am" pronoun for singular first person, plus "Raft" which is the past tense base. For second person, it'll become "Khahi raft".
Becky: Speaking of pronouns, they can be attached to verbs, right?
Mohammad: That's right. There are two types of pronouns in the Persian language. Separate pronouns, and Attached ones.
Becky: The separate ones are those that can be subjects, and there are six of them, the plural and the singular 1st, 2nd, and 3rd person. Can you name them Mohammad?
Mohammad: Sure! The separate pronouns are: Man which means ”I”, To which means ‘singular You”, Oo which means He”,”she” or “it”, Ma which means We”, Shoma which means ‘plural You”, Ishan or Anha which means ”They”.
Becky: The attached pronouns are those attached to the end of verbs, and there are also six of those.
Mohammad: Yes, they are as follows. Am=’do as I do’, ii or EE=do as you do, Ad=do as he does, Im=do as we do, Id=do as you do, And=do as they do.
Becky: The 3rd person singular form doesn't have an attached pronoun in the past tense.
Mohammad: There is also another series of attached pronouns that are added to nouns, and show who they belong to. These are Am, At, Ash, Eman, Etan, Eshan meaning “Mine”, “Your”, “His/her/it’s”, “Our”, “Your”, “Their”. Like "Medademan" meaning "Our Pencil".
Becky: Ok, as a final question, do nouns have a plural form? And if they do, how do they become plural?
Mohammad: Nouns in Persian, become plural by adding "Ha" at the end of them. Adding "An" is also another way but it’s used less often. For example, "Parande" meaning "Bird", which becomes "Parandeha" or "Parandegan". When adding "An", the "E" letter becomes "G".
Becky: Ok listeners, make sure to check the lesson notes to reinforce what you’ve learned in this lesson.


Becky: Well listeners, that’s going to do it for this lesson!
Mohammad: Thank you for joining us.
Becky: Until next time, bye!
Mohammad: Bye.!