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Past tense (a wombat explanation)
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Author:  mhwombat [ Sun 25 Mar 2012 9:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Past tense (a wombat explanation)

For a complete list of wombat explanations, see: viewforum.php?f=34

We already discussed the past tense of on this thread. Now we'll find out how to form the past tense of regular verbs.

First, you need to know the "root", or "command" form of the verb. This is the form of the verb that you use when giving commands, and it's also the form that's listed in the dictionary. You probably already know some of these verbs:

bris! break!
can! sing!
ceannaigh! buy!
creid! believe!
cuir! put!
díol! sell!
dún!, druid! close!
éirigh! rise!
fan! stay!
féach! look!
glac!, tóg! take!
inis! tell!
ith! eat!
leigh! read!
luigh! lie down!
nigh! wash!
oscail! open!
póg! kiss!
scríobh! write!
siúil! walk!
suigh! sit!

To form the past tense, start with the root form, and:
  • If it begins with a consonant that can be lenited, lenite it
  • If it begins with a vowel or f, put d' in front.

Here are some examples:

bris! break! --> Bhris mé I broke
cuir! put! --> Chuir tú You put
inis! tell! --> D'inis Seán Seán told
fan! stay! --> D'fhan sí She stayed
leigh! read! --> Leigh siad They read

When the subject of the verb is muid (sinn), you can treat it the same way as the above examples. Alternatively, you can tack on -(e)amar if the root has one syllable, or -(a)íomar if the root has two syllables. When using this type of combined form, you leave out the pronoun:

póg! kiss! --> Phógamar -or- Phóg muid We kissed
ceannaigh! buy! --> Cheannaíomar -or- Cheannaigh muid We bought

The verb siúil has a minor quirk: if you add an ending to the root, you must make the root broad first. But you only do this if you add an ending.

siúil! walk! --> Shiúlamar! -or- siúil muid! walk!

There are a few other verbs that have minor quirks, but we don't need to worry about them in this thread.

There are a few verbs that have special forms in the past tense:

abair! say! --> Dúirt sí She said
beir! catch! --> Rug tú You caught
clois! hear! --> Chuala siad They heard
déan! do! --> Rinne mé I did
faigh! get! --> Fuair Máire Máire got
feic! see! --> Chonaic mé I saw
tabhair! give! --> Thug sé He gave
tar! come! --> Thainig sibh You (pl) came
téigh! go! --> Chuaigh mé I went

You'll find a summary of all the regular verb forms here.
You'll find a summary of all the irrregular verb forms here.

ImageTo the extent possible under law, Amy de Buitléir has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to this work.

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