April 20, 2012

Passive Participles

Participles, like verbs, can exist in the passive voice in Hindi.

There are two kinds of passive participles in Hindi:

type-1: [perfect participle of main verb] [perfect participle of जाना], e.g. दिए गए

type-2: [perfect participle] [masculine singular oblique form of जाना (जाने) + form of वाला], e.g. बोली जानेवाली

There is a significant difference between these two kinds of passive participles.

Type-1 passive participles indicate a finite action that is complete. Such participles can often be substituted for perfect participles:

दिए हुए – निचे दिए हुए वाक्य – “The sentences given below”

दिए गए  – निचे दिए गए वाक्य – “The sentences given below”

The difference is that a type-1 passive participle may imply agency (this is similar to the difference between intransitive verbs and passive verbs such as पकना  / पकाया जाना).

Both the participle of the main verb and the participle of जाना inflect according to their usage. For instance, in the previous example, दिए गए was inflected as masculine plural since it is functioning as an attributive adjective modifying वाक्य.

Consider an example of type-1 passive participles:

क्या तुमने मेरे द्वारा दी गयी किताब पढ़ी – “Did you read the book that I gave you?” (literally, “Did you read the book given by me?”.

However, type-2 passive participles indicate a general or habitual action:

हिंदी भारत की सबसे अधिक बोली जानेवाली भाषा है – “Hindi is India’s most widely spoken language”

Note the difference between the following two sentences:

ट्रेन में दिया हुआ खाना अच्छा था – “The food given on the train was good”
ट्रेन में दिया जानेवाला खाना अच्छा है – “The food given on the train is good”

The first sentence refers to a particular past event – “the food given on the train (at some time) was good”. However, the second sentence makes a general statement: “the food given on the train (generally) is good”. It would not be appropriate to substitute either kind of participle for the other.

In type-2 participles, the suffix वाला may be adjoined or separated from the masculine singular oblique form of जाना (जाने):

लिखी जाने वाली भाषा

The type-2 perfect participle agrees in gender, number, and case with the modified word, as does the suffix वाला.

In the previous example, the type-2 passive participle बोली जानेवाली was used as an attributive adjective modifying भाषा (“language”), which is a feminine noun.

Type-2 passive participles differ from perfect participles in that type-2 passive participles express a general or habitual action performed upon the word they modify, whereas perfect participles express a state.

लिखी हुई – “(in the state of being) written”

लिखी जानेवाली – “(something which is) written”

For instance:

हिंदी दरवाजे पे लिखी हुई है – “Hindi is written on the door”

हिंदी उत्तर प्रदेश में बोली जानेवाली भाषा है – “Hindi is the language spoken in Uttar Pradesh”

  • Matthew Chang

    Can type 2 passive particles be used as a predicate as well?

    Just as we can use type 1 passive participles to say “हिंदी दरवाजे पे लिखी हुई है”

    Can we say:

    “हिंदी उत्तर प्रदेश में बोली जानेवाली है”, omitting the भाषा?

    • Good question. No, habitual participles are generally used attributively (i.e. like adjectives). Instead, just use a habitual verb, e.g. हिंदी उत्तर प्रदेश में बोली जाती है. Future passive participles incidentally have the same form, and they are used in predicate position, e.g. लेकिन फ़ोन के अगले संस्करण में इस नइ तकनीक का प्रयोग नहीं किया जाने वाला है. The example that you wrote would mean “Hindi is going to be spoken in Uttar Pradesh”. I need to update this page to include better examples and a clearer explanation. Here’s an example from a BBC Hindi article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/hindi/science/2014/01/140125_oldest_cancer_cell_dog_rns.shtml): कुत्ते में पाया जाने वाला यह कैंसर दुर्लभ प्रकार का है. Contrast this sentence with the following sentence: इन कुत्तों में पाया गया कैंसर दुर्लभ प्रकार का है. What is the difference? If we translate these phrases with relative clauses, the difference becomes clear: the former sentence is “this cancer, which IS found in dogs, is a rare kind of cancer”, whereas the latter sentence is “the cancer that WAS found in these dogs is a rare kind of cancer”. The former is talking about a kind of cancer – one that is only found in dogs, not in other animals. The latter simply states that the cancer was found in some particular group of dogs. The former is general/qualitative, the latter is specific, etc. It’s a subtle difference, but an important one. Does that make sense?

  • Divija Sampathi

    1.I am not able to find the subtle difference btwn दिए हुए and दिए गए. Pls explain

    2. Would it be correct to say “The food being given on the train is good” (TYPE 1) as ट्रेन में दिया जा रहा खाना अच्छा है
    and ट्रेन में दिया जा रहा जानेवाला खाना अच्छा है for TYPE 2 ?? Kindly reply if I did go wrong anywhere

    • 1. Generally, there is no difference. दिए गए is more proper. In colloquial Hindi, many people say दिए हुए, though. You might hear “mujhse di hui ghadi” (“the watch that I gave you”), etc. 2. Regarding the type-1 example you gave: no, it is not correct, but I have read these type of sentences in the active voice on BBC Hindi many times. I’ve never seen such a sentence in the passive voice. See this article: http://hindilanguage.info/hindi-grammar/verbals/participles/verb-stem-plus-raha/ The type-2 sentence is incorrect. You could form the participle “diya jaata hua”, but this form is rare. (Colloquial) Hindi speakers don’t use participles or the passive voice very much. Instead, you’re more likely to hear something like “wo log jo khaana de rahe hain wo bahut accha lag raha hai” (“The food they’re giving seems really good”), etc.