• Overview of Punjabi Grammar

Verb Phrase

A verb phrase besides having main verb forms may have the words of some other word classes, like, auxiliary verb, particle (emphatic and negative particles), and verb-part. If all these elements are present, then the order that these follow is – verb-part followed by main verb forms and then auxiliary verb. Emphatic and negative particles will follow the main verb form that they are emphasizing or negating, respectively. For greater degree of emphasis, auxiliary verb may be used in between the main verb forms. In all cases, negative particles will follow emphatic particles, if present, and auxiliary verb, in turn will follow negative particles.

At least four sub-categories of main verb word class has been setup to make the structure of the finite verb phrase (which consists of only finite form of verbs) clearer. These categories are primary, passive, progressive, and modal operator. Members of these operator categories follow the main verb in a verb phrase in the specified order. When these sub-categories are present in the verb phrase, then the grammatical information is represented through these sub-categories.

The primary operator category has 34 members, these are – ਆ ā, ਸਕ sak, ਹੋ , ਕਰ kar, ਖਡ਼ੋ khaṛō, ਨਿਕਲ਼ nikaḷ, ਚਲ cal, ਛੱਡ chaḍḍ, ਜਾ , ਦੇ , ਦੱਸ dass, ਦਿਸ dis, ਧਡ਼ਕ dhaṛak, ਪੈ pai, ਪਾ , ਪੁੱਜ pujj, ਫਡ਼ phaṛ, ਫਿਰ phir, ਬੈਠ baiṭh, ਬਹਿ bahi, ਬਹੁਡ਼ bahuṛ, ਬਣ baṇ, ਮਾਰ mār, ਰੱਖ rakkh, ਲੈ lai, ਲੰਘ laṅgh, ਵੇਖ vēkh, ਉੱਠ uṭṭh, ਚੁੱਕ cukk, ਸੁੱਟ suṭṭ, ਮਿਲ਼ miḷ, ਤੁਰ tur, ਬੋਲ bōl, and ਸੁਣ suṇ. Except ਹੋ , which occurs in DA, IA, and IDA forms, all the other operators can occur in U, O, E, DA, IA, IDA, EGA, and root forms.

A verb phrase will be termed as passive if it has a passive operator. ਜਾ and ਹੋ are its two members and can occur in U, O, E, DA, IA, EGA, or root form. These follow main verb or primary operator (if represented) in IA form.

Verb suffixes also do not show inflection for ‘aspect’ grammatical category. A verb phrase is progressive, if it contains a progressive operator. Otherwise, it is non-progressive. ਰਹਿ rahi and ਜਾ are its two members. These can occur in U, O, E, DA, IA, and EGA forms. ਜਾ can also occur in IDA form. These follow root and DA form of main verb or other operators (primary and passive), if represented. Verb phrase is highlighted in the following example:

  1. ਮੀਂਹ ਪੈ ਰਿਹਾ ਹੁੰਦਾ ਸੀ
    mīṃh pai rihā hundā sī.
    It used to rain.

In the above sentence, ਪੈ pai is main verb form of ਪੈ pai, ਰਿਹਾ rihā is progressive operator form of ਰਹਿ rahi, ਹੁੰਦਾ hundā is modal operator form of ਹੋ , ਸੀ is auxiliary verb in its root form for past tense.

The members of modal operator category are – ਸਕ sak, ਚੁੱਕ cukk, ਦੱਸ dass, ਹੋ , and ਕਰ kar. Except ਹੋ , which occurs in DA and IA forms, all the other operators can occur in U, O, E, DA, IA, and EGA forms. The presence of at least one operator word of primary, passive or progressive operator classes is required for the occurrence of modal operator in a verb phrase. ਸਕ sak and ਚੁੱਕ cukk follow the root forms of other operators in verb phrases. ਦੱਸ dass and ਹੋ follow IA and DA forms in addition to the root forms of the other operators, while ਕਰ kar follows only IA forms of the other operators in verb phrases.

Verb phrases can be classified into the following three types, based on the positions these occupy in the sentences:

Main Verb Phrase

Verb phrases consisting of finite forms, i.e. U, O, E, DA, IA, IDA, and EGA classes, constitute main verb phrases. These verb phrases constitute independent clauses, and occupy the position that is conventionally known as predicate in a sentence, e.g.

  1. ਮੁੰਡਾ ਸਕੂਲ ਪਹੁੰਚ ਚੁੱਕਾ ਸੀ।
    muṇḍā sakūl pahuñc cukkā sī.
    The boy had reached the school.
Verb phrases having NA verb forms either precede main verb phrases (having some limited starting verbs, like ਚਾਹ cāh or ਪੈ pai) or constitute main verb phrase on their own with/without the help of an auxiliary, e.g. NA form is highlighted in the following examples:
  1. ਰਾਮ ਨੇ ਜਾਣਾ ਸੀ।
    rām nē jāṇā sī.
    Ram was to go.
  2. ਰਾਮ ਨੂੰ ਕਹਿਣਾ ਪਏਗਾ।
    rām nūṃ kahiṇā paēgā.
    Ram will have to say.
  3. ਰਾਮ ਨੂੰ ਚਲੇ ਜਾਣਾ ਚਾਹੀਦਾ ਹੈ।
    rām nūṃ calē jāṇā cāhīdā hai.
    Ram should go.
Some operators can occur in NA form in the structure of the main verb phrase, e.g.
  1. ਰਾਮ ਨੇ ਵੇਖਦਾ ਹੀ ਰਹਿ ਜਾਣਾ ਸੀ।
    rām nē vēkhdā hī rahi jāṇā sī.
    Ram may keep on looking.

Subordinate Verb Phrase

Verb phrases comprising of non-finite forms, i.e. DIAN, IAN, KE, and NON classes, constitute subordinate verb phrases. These verb phrases differ from the main verb phrase in the sense that these usually precede main verb phrase in a sentence structure, and thus constitute dependent clauses.

KE form of verb is equivalent to the bare stem followed by the particle ਕੇ . For example, ਕਰਕੇ karkē ‘having done’ and ਕਰ ਕੇ kar kē ‘having done’.

NON form can be thought of as equivalent to N form followed by ਤੋਂ tōṃ ‘from’postposition, e.g. ਜਾਣੋਂ jāṇōṃ (NON form of ਜਾ ‘go’) is similar to ਜਾਣ jāṇ (N form of ਜਾ ‘go’) plus ਤੋਂ tōṃ ‘from’.

Nominal Verb Phrase

Verb phrase having DA, IA, DIAN, or IAN form followed by a noun acts as modifier for that particular noun. Verb phrases ending in N form usually occur before main verb phrases, in the sentence structure, and occupy the position where a noun would be in an oblique case.
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