Slovak past tense
In Slovak language we generally use only one kind of past tense - the simple past tense. Let's have a look at some of the rules to follow.
When to use the simple past tense
The simple past is used in different situations in the past:
- finished actions
- or habits
often used with the words:
- yesterday - včera
- last week - minulý týždeň
- at 2 o'clock - o druhej
- in 2003 - v 2003
How to create the past tense
The past tense is formed by changing the suffix -ť of the infinitive. The suffix depends on the gender and number:
- -l in masculine gender (písa-ť = písa-l)
- -la in feminine gender (kresli-ť = kresli-la)
- -lo in neutral gender (chodi-ť = chodi-lo)
- -li in plural (vari-ť = vari-li)
However, the first and second person in singular and plural "I" (ja), "you" (ty, vy), "we" (my) need an auxiliary verb as well.
|1.||ja som + verb||my sme + verb|
|2.||ty si + verb||vy ste + verb|
|3.||on, ona, ono - verb||oni - verb|
Regular conjugation in past tense
Let´s conjugate the verb to read - čítať as an example.
|1.||ja som čítal (m.), ja som čítala (f.)||my sme písali|
|2.||ty si čítal (m.), ty si čítala (f.)||vy ste písali|
|3||on čítal (m.), ona čítala (f.), ono čítalo (n.)||oni písali|
Here are some example phrases:
- Magda napísala list. = Magda wrote the letter.
- My sme kričali. = We shouted.
- Vy ste prišli. = You came.
- Ja som plakal. = I cried.
Irregular conjugation of "byť" in past tense
The verb "byť" (to be) is an irregular verb. Here is how we conjugate it in past tense:
|1.||ja som bol (m.), ja som bola (f.)||my sme boli|
|2.||ty si bol (m.), ty si bola (f.)||vy ste boli|
|3.||on bol (m.), ona bola (f.), ono bolo (n.)||oni boli|
- Ja som bola doma. = I was at home.
- Dievča bolo v meste. = The girl was in the city.
- Priatelia, vy ste boli na oslave? = Friends, you were at the party?
- Ja a moji rodičia sme boli v Španielsku. = Me and my parents were in Spain.
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