April 20, 2012

होना

The verb होना corresponds to the English verbs “to be”, or “to become”, or “to happen”. Like all Hindi verbs, होना has person, number, gender (in most forms), tense, aspect, and mood.

Hindi verbs are an elegant synthesis of tense, aspect, and mood. Thus, there are many different combinations of tense, aspect, and mood for each verb. However, many of these forms are only theoretical possibilities. The verb forms presented below are presented for the sake of completeness.

For instance, to form the present continuous form of होना, combine the verb stem (हो, which represents the basic meaning of the verb, i.e. “to be”), a form of रहा (which represents the continuous aspect), and a present tense form of होना (which represents the present tense): “बारिश हो रही है” (“It’s raining”). The literal idiom is something like “rain is happening”.

As a more complex example, the “past continuous subjunctive” form of होना is “हो रहा होता“. It is a synthesis of the verb stem of होना (हो), the auxiliary रहा (which represents the continuous aspect), and the past subjunctive form of होना (होता, which represents the past tense and subjunctive mood). Consider an example: “अगर अभी बारिश हो रही होती तो मैं गीला हुआ होता“, “If it were raining right now, then I would be wet!”. In Hindi idiom, we may say that “rain is happening” (बारिश हो रही है). The example sentence is a contrafactual sentence (i.e., the hypothesis “if it were raining” is false). The past subjunctive is used to form contrafactual clauses. Thus, the idiom suggests the continuous aspect, and the contrafactual nature of the sentence suggests the past subjunctive, so the “past continuous subjunctive” was appropriate.

Contrast the previous example with this example: अगर बारिश हो रही हो तो हमें बहार नहीं जाना चाहिए, “If it is raining outside, then we should not go outside”. This example uses the “present continuous subjuntive” form of होना, which is a synthesis of the verb stem of होना (हो, which represents the basic meaning of the whole verb), the auxiliary रहा (feminine रही, which represents the continuous aspect), and the present subjunctive form of होना (हो, which represents the present tense and subjunctive mood). In this example, we’re using the same idiom, but the hypothesis is not something that we know to be false – it’s not contrafactual. The subjunctive mood is appropriate in certain circumstances, for instance, in the hypothesis of “if … then” sentences, subordinate clauses, etc.

Consider yet another example: “उन लोगों को अपने काम ख़त्म करने में बहुत समय लग रहा है; कुछ तो हुआ होगा” (“It’s taking them a long time to finish their work; something must have happened.”). The latter sentence “कुछ तो हुआ होगा” (“something must have happened”) is an example of the “past presumptive” form of होना; it is a synthesis of the past tense of होना (हुआ) and the presumptive mood (होगा, the future form of होना, is used an an auxiliary to form presumptive verbs).

For another example “मैं इस विचार से बिलकुल सहमत हूँ” (“I completely agree with this idea”), or, more literally, “I am completely agreeable with this idea”. This example simply uses हूँ, the first person present tense form of होना.

As a basic example, मैं खुश हूँ means “I am happy”. Here, हूँ is “am” – there is no implied aspect, the tense is present, and the mood is indicative. This is a basic usage.

The point of the preceding analysis is not to give the impression that Hindi verbs are very complex, but rather to give the impression that Hindi verbs are comprehensible because they follow very regular patterns – they are constructed from constituent parts in predictable ways.

The Indicative Mood

Present Tense

Pronoun Form
मैं (I) हूँ (am)
हम (We) हैं (Are)
आप (You, honorific) हैं (Are)
तुम (You, familiar) हो (Are)
तू (You, intimate) है (Are)
यह/वह (He/She/It/This/That) है (Is)
ये/वे (They, These, Those) हैं (Are)

Second Person Personal Pronouns

Hindi has three forms of the second personal personal pronoun (“you” in English). These forms express different levels of familiarity and deference toward the addressee by the speaker.

आप

आप is formal and honorific. It is used for elders, seniors, superiors, and respectfully for peers. It is somewhat formal, and may indicate unfamiliarity. आप is grammatically plural, regardless of whether it is used to address a single person or multiple people. Therefore, हैं is used with आप; हैं is plural, and is also used with हम (“we”) and वेये (either “they”, or “these”, or “those”, etc.). Often, however, especially among the younger generation in India, people will use आप with हो, as in आप कैसे हो (“how are you”). Various words, such as लोग (“people”) or सब (“all”) may be added to explicitly indicate more than one person, as in आप लोग (” you (people)”) or आप सब (“you (all)”), although the context is usually clear.

तुम

तुम is a pronoun used to address people with whom the speaker is familiar. It is generally used for peers and equals as a sign of informality. An elder or superior would generally address a younger person or inferior with तुम. तुम is used with a special form of होना, हो. तुम is always grammatically plural, regardless of whether it is used to address a single person or multiple people. Thus, हो is likewise grammatically plural.

Examples:

तुम कैसे हो (“How are you?”); note that the interrogative adjective कैसे is plural, even if only a single person is being addressed, since predicate adjectives must agree with their corresponding subject in gender and number, and तुम is grammatically plural. Also, one or more male addressees are being addressed.

तुम कैसी हो (“How are you?”); in this sentence, the interrogative adjective कैसी is feminine and plural, regardless of how many people are being addressed, since तुम is grammatically plural. Thus, one or more female addressees are being addressed.

तू

तू conveys intimacy between the speaker and addressee. It may be used for young children. It may be employed to address inferiors, such as masters addressing servants, etc. It can also express anger or insult.तू is grammatically singular, and may not refer to more than one person. The form of होना used with तू is है, which is grammatically singular.

तू कैसा है (“How are you”); note that the interrogative adjective in this sentence is कैसा, which is masculine and singular, and thus agrees grammatically with तू. Thus the addressee is male, and a single person.

Note that in the present tense, होना does not have any grammatical gender. In other tenses, however, it has grammatical gender.

Also note the nasalization of the vowels. The nasalization indicates plurality.

Habitual Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
यह/वह होता है होती है
ये/वे होते हैं होती हैं

The present habitual form is generally used in the third person. It is most often used in general, impersonal statements.

Continuous Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं हो रहा हूँ हो रही हूँ
हम हो रहे हैं हो रही हैं
आप हो रहे हैं हो रही हैं
तुम हो रहे हो हो रही हो
तू हो रहा है हो रही है
वह/यह हो रहा है हो रही है
ये/वे हो रहे हैं हो रही हैं

Perfective Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
यह/वह हुआ है हुई है

Past Tense

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं था थी
आप थे थीं
तुम थे थीं
तू था थी
यह/वह था थी
हम थे थीं
ये/वे थे थीं

Note that when referring to subjects of mixed gender, the masculine plural form is used. Examples… Nasalization Note that there are only 4 forms.

Habitual Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं होता था होती थी
हम होते थे होती थीं
आप होते थे होती थीं
तुम होते थे होती थीं
तू होता था होती थी
यह/वह होता था होती थी
ये/वे होते थे होती थीं

Continuous Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं हो रहा था हो रही थी
हम हो रहे थे हो रही थीं
आप हो रहे थे हो रही थीं
तुम हो रहे थे हो रही थीं
तू हो रहा था हो रही थी
वह/यह हो रहा था हो रही थी
ये/वे हो रहे थे हो रही थीं

Perfective Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
यह/वह हुआ था हुई थी

Future Tense

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं हूँगा/होऊँगा हूँगी/होऊँगी
आप होंगे होंगी
तुम होगे होगी
तू होगा होगी
हम होंगे होंगी
यह/वह होगा होगी
ये/वे होंगे होंगी

Subjunctive Mood

Pronoun Form
मैं हूँ/होऊँ
आप हों
तुम हो
तू हो
हम हों
यह/वह हो
ये/वे हों

habitual subjunctive

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं होता हूँहोऊँ होती हूँहोऊँ
हम होते हों होती हों
आप होते हों होती हों
तुम होते हो होती हो
तू होता हो होती हो
यह/वह होता हो होती हो
ये/वे होते हों होती हों

Continuous Aspect

Pronoun Masculine Form Feminine Form
मैं हो रहा हूँहोऊँ हो रही हूँहोऊँ
हम हो रहे हों हो रही हों
आप हो रहे हों हो रही हों
तुम हो रहे हो हो रही हो
तू हो रहा हो हो रही हो
वह/यह हो रहा हो हो रही हो
ये/वे हो रहे हों हो रही हों

, perfective subjunctive, continuous subjunctive

Imperative Mood

Non-finite forms

Infinitives

Participles

Imperfective Participle

Perfective Participle