• Turkish grammar
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  • 1 The Turkish alphabet
  • 2 The Turkish pronunciation [0/2]
  • 3 Turkish cases [0/11]
  • 4 Turkish articles [0/1]
  • 5 Turkish nouns [0/5]
  • 6 Turkish adjectives [0/2]
  • 7 Turkish adverbs [0/11]
  • 8 Turkish pronouns [0/12]
  • 9 Turkish prepositions and postpositions [0/10]
  • 10 Verbs in Turkish [0/32]
  • 10.1 Turkish infinitive [0/2]
  • 10.2 The verb ''to be'' in Turkish (conjugation) [0/3]
  • 10.3 Turkish verb conjugation and tenses [0/12]
  • 10.4 Causative verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 10.5 Passive verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 10.6 Reflexive verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 10.7 Reciprocal verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 10.8 Modal verbs in Turkish [0/3]
  • 10.9 Auxiliary verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 10.10 Subjunctive verbs in Turkish [0/2]
  • 11 Turkish sentence structure and phrases [0/7]
  • Past tense in Turkish (geçmiş zaman)

    The past tense shows completed events in the past. The past tense is called 'geçmiş zaman' in Turkish. There are two suffixes that are used in the past tense in Turkish:

    1. '-di' (definite past tense) 
    2. '-miş' (indefinite past tense).

    The difference between those suffixes is depending on whether the speaker witnessed the event or not.

    Definite past tense (-di'li geçmiş zaman)

    The definite past tense is used when you have personal knowledge or directly experienced something. This tense shows events that are witnessed by the speaker. The suffix '-di' is used and can be formed as ''-dı -du, -dü, -ti, -tı -tu, -tü'' according to the vowel harmony rules.

    How to form the definite past tense

    The 3 forms of the definite past tense are:

    • Positive form
    • Negative form
    • Question form

    Positive form

    According to the verb's last vowel, one of the following suffixes "-dı, -di, -du, -dü" are added to the verb root and then the personal suffix is added.

    enlightenedVerb root + -di (dı/du/dü) + personal suffix

    Last vowel of the verb root -> a/ı e/i o/ö u/ü
    Add this suffix -> -dı -di -du -dü

    Examples

    • Al (buy) -> İki ekmek al. (She bought two breads.)
    • İzle (watch) -> Biz film izledik. (We watched a movie.)
    • Sor (ask) -> Bana soru sordular. (They asked me a question.)
    • Gül (smile) -> Sen bana güln. (You smiled at me.)

    enlightened If the last letter of the verb root is one of "ç, f, h, k, s, ş, t, p", the letter "d" is replaced with a "t". Then the suffixes become "-tı, -ti, -tu, -tü".

     Seçmek (to choose)  
    Ben seçtim. I chose.
    Sen seçtin. You chose.
    O seçti. He/she/it chose.
    Biz seçtik. We chose.
    Siz seçtiniz. You chose.
    Onlar seçtiler. They chose.

    Negative form

    The negative suffix '-madı' or '-medi' is added to the verb root according to the vowel harmony rules and then the personal suffix is added.

    enlightenedVerb root + (-medi/-madı) + personal suffix

    Last vowel of the verb root -> a, ı, o, u e, i, ö, ü
    Add this suffix-> -madı -medi

     

    Examples

    • Oku (read) -> Biz kitabı okumadık. (We didn't read the book.)
    • Konuş (speak) -> Onlar dün konuşmadılar. (They didn't talk yesterday.)
    • Git (go) -> Biz işe gitmedik. (We didn't go to work.)
    • Öğren (learn) -> Bir şey öğrenmedim. (I didn't learn anything.)

    Question form

    According to the verb's last vowel, one of the "-mı, -mi, -mu, -mü" are added after the verb and they are always written as a seperate word.

    enlightenedVerb root + -di (dı/du/dü)+ personal suffix + mi (mı/mu/mü)

    Examples

    • Arkadaşın geldi mi? (Did your friend come?)
    • Seni geri aradı ? (Did she call you back?)
    • Kek yapıyor mu? (Did she make a cake?)
    • Kuşu gördün ? (Did you see the bird?)

    Indefinite past tense

    The indefinite past tense is used for reporting an event that somebody did not witness in person. The suffix '-miş' is used and can be formed as ''-muş, -mış, -müş'' according to the vowel harmony rules.

    How to form the indefinite past tense

    The 3 forms of the indefinite past tense are:

    • Positive form
    • Negative form
    • Question form

    Positive form

    According to the verb's last vowel, one of the following suffixes "-mış, -miş, -muş, -müş" is added to the verb root and then the personal suffx is added.

    enlightened Verb root + -miş (mış/muş/müş) + personal suffix

    Last vowel of the verb root -> a/ı e/i o/u ö/ü
    Add this suffix -> -mış -miş -muş -müş

     

    Examples

    • Al (buy) -> İki ekmek almış. (She bought two breads.)
    • İzle (watch) -> Siz film izlemişsiniz. (You watched a film.)
    • Sor (ask) -> Bana soru sormuşlar. (They asked me a questions.)
    • Gül (smile) -> Sen bana gülmüşsün. (You smiled at me.)

    Negative form

    The negative suffix '-mamış' or '-memiş' is added to the verb root according to the vowel harmony rules and then the personal suffix is added.

    enlightenedVerb root + -memiş/-mamış + personal suffix

    Last vowel of the verb root -> a, ı, o, u e, i, ö, ü
    Add this suffix -> -mamış -memiş

     

    Examples

    • Oku (read) -> Biz kitabı okumamışız. (We didn't read the book.)
    • Konuş (speak) -> Onlar dün konuşmamışlar. (They didn't talk yesterday.)
    • Git (go) -> Biz işe gitmemişiz. (We didn't go work.)
    • Öğren (learn) -> Bir şey öğrenmemişim. (I didn't learn anything.)

    Question form 

    According to the verb's last vowel, one of the "-mış mı-/ -miş mi/ -muş mu/ -müş mü" is added after the verb.

    enlightened Verb root + -miş mi (muş mu...) + personal suffix

    Examples

    • Arkadaşın gelmiş mi? (Did your friend come?)
    • Seni geri aramış mı? (Did she call you back?)
    • Kek yapmış mı? (Did she make a cake?)
    • Kuşu görmüş mü? (Did you see the bird?)

     

    Exercises

    Multiple choice exercise on the definite past tense

    Multiple choice exercise on the indefinite past tense

    Fill in the blanks exercise about the definite past tense

    Fill in the blanks exercise about the indefinite past tense