How to Conjugate Persian Verbs

How to Conjugate Persian Verbs

Verb Conjugation is the process of changing the verbs based on who is doing the action and when.

In English we add -ed to regular verbs for the past tense: “I work”  becomes “I worked.” We also add -s or -es to in the singular third person: “I run,” becomes “she runs.”, “I go” becomes “she goes”.

In Persian conjugating verbs follow regular patterns according to three factors:

  1. Person – verb conjugations are different depending on the pronoun (the person who is doing the action), i.e. depending on whether I, you, he (or she), etc.
  2. Number – singular (for one person) or plural (for more than one person) – thus conjugations different depending on if it is او (u) – ‘he/she’ or آنها (ānhā) – ‘they’;
  3. Tense – in Persian, we have present (e.g. “mibinam”  می بینم– “I see”), past (e.g. “goftam” گفتم – “I said”), and future (e.g. “khaaham raft” – “I will go”).

To conjugate a verb, you need to use verbal endings for each pronoun.

Verbal Endings

There are five past Verbal Endings for six personal pronouns (for third person, there is no verbal ending):

م – ی – …- یم – ید ند

م /man/ من
ی /to/ تو
/u/ او
یم /mâ/ ما
ید /shomâ/ شما
ند /ânhâ/ – / ishan/ آنها – ایشان

To conjugate a Persian verb, we need to find the present stem (for present verbs) or past stem (for past verbs). The past stem always obtains easily by removing the last letter ن (nun) from the infinitive:

For example, the past stem of the verb خوردن (“khordan” means “to eat”) is خورد

Past stem called “سِتاکِ گُذَشتِه” /setâke gozashte/ is used in shaping different forms of verbs including simple past.

Let’s review some verbs and their past stems.

مَصدر مَعنی سِتاکِ گذشته
infinitive meaning Past Stem
دیدَن To see دید
گُفتَن To say گُفت
نِوِشتَن To write نِوِشت
رَفتَن To go رَفت
آمَدَن To come آمَد

Now, let’s conjugate simple past of easy verb like “to be”. You just need to find the past stem of the verb which is “بود” and then add verbal endings.

Simple past of “to be”

Persian Pronunciation English
بودَم /budam/I was
بودی /budi/You were (singular)
بود /bud/He / She was
بودیم /budim/We were
بودید /budid/You were
بودَند /budand/They were

Examples:

Persian Pronunciation English
مَن دیروز مَریض بودَم /man diruz mariz budam/I was sick yesterday.
تو دانِشجو بودی /to dâneshju budi/You were a student.
او اُستاد بود /u ostâd bud/S/he was a teacher.
ما دَر کِلاس بودیم /mâ dark elâs budim/We were in the classroom.
شُما دَر دانِشگاه بودید /shomâ dar dâneshgâh budid/You were in the university.
آنها دَر خانِه بودَند /ânhâ dar khâne budand/They were at home.


For present verbs, there are six Verbal Endings for six personal pronouns:

Present Verbal Endings Pronunciation Personal pronouns
م /man/ مَن
ی /to/ تو
د /u/ او
یم  /mâ/ ما
ید /shomâ/ شما
ند /ânhâ/ – / ishan/ آنها – ایشان

The present stem of Persian verbs follows no pattern and you have to learn it. For example, the present stem of the verb “دیدن”, “to see”, is “بین”, the present stem of the verb “شنیدن”, “to hear”, is “شنو”.

Let’s review simple present of an easy verb like “to have”. The infinitive “to have” is “داشتن” in Persian and the present stem is “دار”. Just add the verbal endings to “دار”.

Simple Present of “to have”

دار +  (م، ی، د، یم، ید، ند)


دارَم /dâram/ I have
داری /dâri/ You (singular)have
دارَد /dârad/ She/he has
داریم /dârim/ We have
دارید /dârid/ You (Plural) have
دارَند /dârand/ They have

In Present and Past progressive tense (e.g. “I am going” or “I was going”), every indicative verb is accompanied by the prepositional particle می.
For example, the verb “to go” is “رفتن” in Persian. The present stem of the verb is “رو”. To make a Present Progressive, add “می” to the beginning of the present stem and add the verbal endings.

می + رو + م = می روم

“می روم”, “miravam” means “I am going.

Present Progressive حالِ اِخباری

می + سِتاکِ حال + شِناسِه های حال: می روم، می ­روی، می ­رود، می ­رویم، می­ روید، می ­روند

Examples:

Persian Pronunciation English
می + گوی + م = می گویَم /miguyam/I am saying.
می + رو + د = می رَوَد /miravad/S/he is going.
می + خند + یم = می خَندیم /mikhandim/We are laughing.

Examples:

Persian Pronunciation English
.مَن به مَدرِسه می رَوَم /man be madrese miravam/I am going to school.
.او اینجا زِندِگی می کُنَد /u injâ zendegi mikonad/S/he lives here.
.او با سارا می خَندَد /u bâ sârâ mikhandad/S/he and Sarah are laughing.

Negative of Present Progressive:     مَنفیِ حالِ اِخباری

نـِمی + ستاک حال + شناسه های حال: نمی ­روم، نمی ­روی، نمی ­رود، نمی­ رویم، نمی ­روید، نمی ­روند

Persian Pronunciation English
نمی­ گویم /nemiguyam/I don’t say
زندگی نمی ­کنیم /zendegi nemikonim/We don’t live
نمی ­ینویسد /neminevisad/It doesn’t write
نِمی­ شِنَوَم /nemishenavam/I don’t hear.
نِگاه نِمی­ کُنَم /negâh nemikonam/I don’t see.
بیدار نِمی­ شَوَد /bidâr nemishavad/S/he doesn’t wake up.

To conjugate Persian compound verbs (a combination of a verb and noun or adjective), we the stem of the verbal element and the endings are placed at the end of the verbal element of the compound. For example, for the verb “to live”, “زندگی کردن”, you need to find the stem of “کردن” which is “کن” and add “می” to the beginning and use verbal ending. Then: “زندگی می کنم” means “I live”, “زندگی می کنی” means “You live”, etc.

Simple Infinitives

Persian infinitives end with letter “ن”. Simple infinitives have one word:

Englis Pronunciation Persian
To become/shodan/ شُدَن 
To see/didan/ دیدَن
To write/neveshtan/ نِوِشتَن
To go/raftan/ رَفتَن
To say/goftan/ گُفتَن
To hear /shenidan/ شِنیدَن

Compound Infinitives

A compound infinitive is a combination of a verb and a noun or adjective.

English Pronunciation Persian
To live /zendegi kardan/ زِندِگی کَردَن
To talk/goftegu kardan/گُفتِگو کَردَن
To wake up/bidâr shodan/بیدار شُدَن
To fly/parvâz kardan/پَرواز کَردَن
To see/negah kardan/نِگاه کَردَن
To advise/pand dâdan/

The following table presents 100 most common Persian verbs and their present and past stems.

Top 100 Persian Verbs
Present Stem Past Stem English Pronunciation Persian Verbs Row
(آزار) ده آزار داد to tease âzâr dâdan آزار دادَن 1
آي آمد to come âmadan آمدَن 2
آموز آموخت to learn âmukhtan آموختَن 3
آور آورد to bring âvardan آوردَن 4
(اجاره) ده اجاره داد to lease ejâre dâdan اِجارِه دادَن 5
(ارائه) ده ارائه داد to exhibit erâ’e dâdan اِرائِه دادَن 6
افروز افروخت to fire afrukhtan اَفروختَن 7
افزاي افزود to increase afzudan اَفزودَن 8
انداز انداخت to drop, to throw andâkhtan اَنداختَن 9
ايست ايستاد to stop, to stand istâdan ايستادَن 10
بخش بخشيد to grant, to forgive bakhshidan بَخشيدَن 11
بردار برداشت to take, to pickup bardâshtan بَرداشتَن 12
بر برد to win, to carry bordan بُردَن 13
برگرد برگشت to return bargashtan بَرگَشتَن 14
بر بريد to cut, to chop boridan بُريدَن 15
بند بست to shut, to tighten bastan بَستَن 16
(بهوش) آي بهوش آمد to revive behush âmadan بِهوش آمَدَن17
باش بود to exist, to stand budan بودَن 18
بوس بوسيد to kiss busidan بوسيدَن 19
بوي بوييد to smell buyidan بوييدَن 20
پاش پاشيد to spray, to pour pâshidan پاشيدَن 21
پز پخت to cook pokhtan پُختَن 22
پذير پذيرفت to admit, to accept paziroftan پَذيرُفتَن 23
پرداز پرداخت to pay pardâkhtan پَرداختَن 24
پرس پرسيد to ask porsidan پُرسيدَن 25
پسند پسنديد to choose, to accept pasandidan پَسنديدَن 26
پوس پوسيد to decay pusidan پوسيدَن 27
پوش پوشيد to wear pushidan پوشيدَن 28
پيچ پيچيد to twist, to roll pichidan پيچيدَن 29
پيماي پيمود to run, to pace peimudan پِيمودَن 30
پيوند پيوست to join, to connect peivastan پِيوَستَن 31
ترسان ترساند to threat, to horrify tarsândan تَرساندَن 32
ترس ترسيد to abhor, to scare tarsidan تَرسيدَن 33
جه جست to jump, to leap jostan جُستَن 34
جنب جنبيد to vibrate, to move jonbidan جُنبيدَن 35
جوشان جوشاند to boil jushândan جوشاندَن 36
جوش جوشيد to boil jushidan جوشيدَن 37
جو جويد to chew javidan جَويدَن 38
چرخ چرخيد to rotate charkhidan چَرخیدَن 39
چسبان چسباند to stick, to paste chasbândan چَسباندَن 40
چسب چسبيد to cohere, to cling chasbidan چَسبيدَن 41
چش چشيد to taste cheshidan چِشيدَن 42
چين چيد to pickup chidan چيدَن 43
حل كن حل كرد to solve hal kardan حَل كَردَن 44
خر خريد to buy, to purchase kharidan خَريدَن 45
(خم) شو خم شد to bow, to recline kham shodan خَم شُدَن 46
(خواب) بين خواب ديد to dream khâb didan خواب ديدَن 47
خواب خوابيد to sleep, to lie khâbidan خوابيدَن 48
خواه خواست to ask, to desire khâstan خواستَن 49
ده داد to grant, to give dâdan دادَن 50
دار داشت to own, to have dâshtan داشتَن 51
دان دانست to cognize, know dânestan دانِستَن 52
دوز دوخت to sew dukhtan دوختَن 53
دو دويد to run davidan دَويدَن 54
بين ديد to see, to observe didan ديدَن 55
ران راند to drive rândan راندَن 56
رس رسيد to arrive residan رِسيدَن 57
رقص رقصيد to dance raghsidan رَقصيدَن 58
رنج رنجيد to huff, to miff ranjidan رَنجيدَن 59
ريز ريخت to shed, to pour rikhtan ریختَن 60
زاي زاييد to give birth, to bear zâyidan زاييدَن 61
زن زد to beat, to shoot zadan زَدَن 62
ساز ساخت to establish, to build sâkhtan ساختَن 63
سپر سپرد to depute, to entrust sepordan سِپُردَن 64
سنج سنجيد to evaluate sanjidan سَنجيدَن 65
سوز سوخت to burn sukhtan سوختَن 66
شو شد to become shodan شُدَن 67
شوي شست to wash shostan شَستَن 68
شكن شكست to break shekastan شِكَستَن 69
شمر شمرد to count shemordan شِمُردَن 70
شناس شناخت to identify shenâkhtan شِناختَن 71
شنو شنيد to hear shenidan شِنيدَن 72
غلت غلتيد to roll ghaltidan غَلتيدَن 73
فرست فرستاد to forward, to send ferestâdan فِرِستادَن 74
فرماي فرمود to bid farmudan فَرمودَن 75
فرو بر فرو برد to plunge foru bordan فُرو بُردَن 76
فروش فروخت to sell forukhtan فُروختَن 77
فشر فشرد to squeeze feshordan فِشُردَن 78
فهم فهميد to understand fahmidan فَهميدَن 79
كار كاشت to implant kâshtan كاشتَن 80
كن كرد to do, to perform kardan کَردَن 81
كش كشت to kill, to murder koshtan كُشتَن 82
كش كشيد to pull, to drag keshidan كِشيدَن 83
كن كند to dig, to peel kandan كَندَن 84
كوب كوبيد to hammer, to bruise kubidan كوبيدَن 85
گذار گذاشت to put, to let gozâshtan گُذاشتَن 86
گير گرفت to take, to hold gereftan گِرِفتَن 87
گريز گريخت to escape gorikhtan گُريختَن 88
گرد گشت to roll, to search gashtan گَشتَن 89
گو گفت to say, to tell goftan گُفتَن 90
لرز لرزيد to vibrate, to shake larzidan لَرزيدَن 91
مان ماند to stay, to stand mândan ماندَن 92
مير مرد to die mordan مُردَن 93
نال ناليد to complain nâlidan ناليدَن 94
نشين نشست to sit neshastan نِشَستَن 95
(نگاه) کن نگاه كرد to see, to look negâh kardan نِگاه كَردَن 96
نگهدار نگهداشت to hold negahdâshtan نِگَهداشتَن 97
نويس نوشت to write neveshtan نِوِشتَن 98
وز وزيد to blow vazidan وَزيدَن 99
ياب يافت to find, to discover yâftan يافتَن 100

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