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The definite past tense

 

FORMATION

 

The ‘di'li geçmiş zaman' of the verb is formed by adding the tense suffix ‘-dı' (-di, -du, -dü / -tı, -ti, -tu, -tü) to the verb base : ‘anla-dı, gel-di, ara-dı, çalış-tı, hazırla-dı' etc

 

The affirmative verb is formed in three steps as follows:

 

STEP 1: Remove ‘-mek / -mak' from the infinitive form of the verb:

 

 infinitive: anlamak  →   anla

 

STEP 2: Add the tense suffix ‘-dı' (-di, -du, -dü / -tı, -ti, -tu, -tü):

 

anla  →   anla-dı

 

STEP 3: Add appropriate personal endings (-m, -n, - / -k, -niz, -ler):

             

anla-dı-m, anla-dı-n, anla-dı  / anla-dı-k, anla-dı-nız, anla-dı-lar

 

As you can see  these personal endings are the same as for the past tense of the  verb ‘to be' with the exception of no buffer letter.

 

NEGATIVE FORM

 

The negative verb is formed  by following the  steps below:

 

STEP 1: Remove ‘-mek / -mak' from the infinitive form of the verb:

 

infinitive: anlamak  →  anla

 

STEP 2. Add the negative particle ‘-me / -ma':

  

anla  →   anla-ma

 

STEP 3: Add the tense suffix ‘-dı' (-di, -du, -dü / -tı, -ti, -tu, -tü):

 

anla-ma  →   anla-ma-dı

 

STEP 4: Add appropriate personal endings (-m, -n, - / -k, -niz, -ler):

             

anla-ma-dı-m, anla-ma-dı-n, anla-ma-dı / anla-ma-dı-k, anla-ma-dı-nız, anla-ma-dı-lar

 

The stres falls strongly on the syllable before the negative ending: anlamadım

 

INTERROGATIVE FORM

 

The interrogative verb is formed by adding the interrogative particle ‘-mi' (-mı, -mü, -mu) to the affirmative verb separately. Unlike in all the other tenses, the personal endings in the interrogative and negative interrogative forms precede the interrogative particle ‘-mi': 

 

anla-dı-m mı, anla-dı-n mı, anla-dı mı / anla-dı-k mı, anla-dı-nız mı, anla-dı-lar mı

 

The stress falls on the preceding syllable: anladın

 

NEGATIVE INTERROGATIVE FORM

 

The negative interrogative verb is formed by adding the interrogative particle ‘-mi' (-mı, -mü, -mu) to the negative verb - the way it is added to affirmative verb to form the interrogative verb:

 

anla-ma-dı-m mı, anla-ma-dı-n mı, anla-ma-dı mı / anla-ma-dı-k mı, anla-ma-dı-nız mı, anla-ma-dı-lar mı

 

CONJUGATION TABLE

 

 

Personal

Pronouns

 

Personal

Endings

 

Affirmative

 

 

Negative

 

Interrogative

       Negative        Interrogative

   Ben

  -m

anla-dı-m

anla-ma-dı-m

anla-dı-m mı

anla-ma-dı-m mı

   Sen

  -n

anla-dı-n

anla-ma-dı-n

anla-dı-n mı

anla-ma-dı-n mı

   O

  -

anla-dı

anla-ma-dı

anla-dı mı

anla-ma-dı mı

   Biz

  -k

anla-dı-k

anla-ma-dı-k

anla-dı-k mı

anla-ma-dı-k mı

   Siz

  -niz

anla-dı-nız

anla-ma-dı-nız

anla-dı-nız mı

anla-ma-dı-nız mı

   Onlar

  -ler

anla-dı-lar

anla-ma-dı-lar

anla-dı-lar mı

anla-ma-dı-lar mı

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

USE

 

Most common time expressions used with the ‘di'li geçmiş zaman' are as follows:

 

dün : yesterday

dün (sabah, öğleden sonra, akşam,) : yesterday (morning, afternoon, evening)

dün gece : last night

geçen (salı..., hafta, ay, eylül..., yaz..., sene [= yıl] ) : last (Tuesday..., week, month, September..., summer..., year)

geçen (gün, sabah, öğleden sonra, akşam, gece) : the other (day, afternoon, evening, night)

geçenlerde : lately, recently

geçen defa (= sefer) : last time (in the sense of the previous time)

(iki) saat, gün, hafta, ay, yıl önce (= evvel) : (two) days, weeks, hours, years ago

çok önce : a long time ago

biraz, az önce : a little while ago

(birkaç) dakika, saat, gün, ay, yıl önce : (a few) minutes, hours, days, years ago                            

önceki (evvelki) gün : the day before yesterday

 

The ‘di'li' geçmiş zaman' is:

 

A  used to relate past events either fulfilled or witnessed by the narrator:

 

Sabah saat 7:00 de kalktım.                         

Babam yarım saat önce yattı. 

Ali bugün okula gelmedi.     

Dün gece Ayşe'nin doğun günü partisine gittik.

Kız kardeşim Zeynep geçen yaz evlendi.     

Osman evden biraz önce çıktı.

 

B   used to relate past events known to the narrator through his education:

 

Ampulü Edison buldu.                            

İstanbul'u Fatih Sultan Mehmet fethetti.  

II. Dünya savaşı 1939'da başladı.

Atatürk 10 Kasım 1938'de öldü.

 

C  used instead of the ‘gelecek zaman' in order to assure the one whom we address on the action  to be done in a short time or, to sound persuasive:

 

A woman making up in the bathroom for a party may reply his husband calling her at the door ‘Geç kalıyoruz, acele et!' as ‘geldim!'. (the woman implies that ‘I have almost finished it. Don't be impatient. I am coming.').

 

Anyone working on a work may also reply the question, ‘İşini ne zaman bitireceksin' as ‘bitti'. (It is meant by the word ‘bitti' that it's almost finished, or is going to finish in seconds).

 

Note that The ‘di'li geçmiş zaman' covers the English simple past tense as well as the present perfect tense (which is used for past actions whose time is not given and not definite. And also used for actions which occur further back in the past, provided the connection with the present is still maintained,  that is, the action could be repeated in the present).

 

‘I have done my homework.' and ‘I did my homework.' are both translated into Turkish as ‘Ev ödevimi yaptım.' Or,  ‘We have seen some foxes in the forest.' as ‘Ormanda birkaç tane tilki gördük.'

 

Actions which have only just finished expressed by either the present perfect simple or the present perfect continuous (in English) are expressed in Turkish by the ‘di'li geçmiş zaman' as well. It can be used with şimdi', ‘yeni', ‘biraz / az önce', ‘henüz'  (Apart from ‘henüz', other words aren't normally used in the negative.)

 

Özür dilerim, geç kaldım. Çok bekledin mi? (I am sorry I am late. Have you been waiting long?)

Akşam yemeğini henüz yemedik. (We haven't eaten dinner yet.)

Biraz önce kalktım. (I have just got up.)

Film henüz başladı.    (The film has just started.)

Annem evden şimdi çıktı. (My mother has just left home.)

Ev ödevini henüz bitirmedin mi? (Haven't you finished your homework yet?)

 

 


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