Punjabi/Grammar/Parts of speech

Parts of Speech


English speakers reading this Wikibook are likely already familiar with the concept of parts of speech from English grammar. Parts of speech in Punjabi are similar. These are ਨਾਂਵ (noun), ਪੜਨਾਂਵ (pronoun), ਕਿਰਿਆ (verb), ਵਿਸ਼ੇਸ਼ਣ (adjective), ਕਿਰਿਆ ਵਿਸ਼ੇਸ਼ਣ (adverb), ਸੰਬੰਧਕ (postposition), ਯੋਜਕ (conjunction) and ਵਿਸਮਿਕ (interjection). We will study these concepts in following chapters.

Some concepts in reation to parts of speech

ਲਿੰਗ - gender
In Punjabi people and animals have a gender, e.g. ਕੁੜੀ (girl) is of feminine gender (ਇਸਤਰੀ ਲਿੰਗ). There are two genders viz. ਪੁਲਿੰਗ (masculine) and ਇਸਤਰੀ ਲਿੰਗ (feminine). Inanimate things can also have gender.
ਵਚਨ - number
ਵਚਨ or number of a part of speech tells us whether the word refers to a single person, place or thing, in which case it is singular (ਇਕ-ਵਚਨ) e.g. ਕਿਤਾਬ (book) or more than one thing in which case it is plural (ਬਹੁ-ਵਚਨ) e.g. ਕਿਤਾਬਾਂ(books).
ਪੁਰਖ - person
There are three grammatical persons. ਪ੍ਰਥਮ-ਪੁਰਖ (first person) speaks to the ਦੂਜਾ-ਪੁਰਖ (second person) and refers to a ਤੀਜਾ-ਪੁਰਖ (third person). First person includes ਮੈਂ (I) and ਅਸੀਂ (we), the second person ਤੂੰ (you, singular) and ਤੁਸੀਂ (you, plural) and the third person ਉਹ (he, she or they).
ਕਾਰਕ - case
The functionality of a noun or pronoun in the sentence determines its form. These form variants of the noun or pronoun are called the ਕਾਰਕ(case) of the noun or pronoun. For example, pronouns in English can be subjects (e.g. "he") or objects (e.g. "him"). The Punjabi cases are
  1. ਕਰਤਾ ਕਾਰਕ subjective or nominative case is used for the doer of the verb's action.
  2. ਕਰਮ ਕਾਰਕ objective case is used for the object of the action of the verb.
  3. ਕਰਨ ਕਾਰਕ instrumental or agentative case is used for the instrument with which the action of the verb is done or the agent through which it is done.
  4. ਸੰਪ੍ਰਦਾਨ ਕਾਰਕ dative case is used for indirect object of verb that is the beneficiary of the action of the verb or receives something.
  5. ਅਪਾਦਾਨ ਕਾਰਕ ablative case is used for something that is moving away from or is being given away by the subject.
  6. ਸੰਬੰਧ ਕਾਰਕ postpositional case is that which establishes a relation with subject.
  7. ਅਧਿਕਰਣ ਕਾਰਕ locative case is used for the place where or on/in/under which something is placed.
  8. ਸੰਬੋਧਨ ਕਾਰਕ vocative case is the address to another person, etc.
ਕਾਲ - tense
ਕਾਲ or tense relates to time of happening of the verb. Tense can be ਭੂਤ ਕਾਲ (past) e.g. ਖਾਧਾ (ate), ਵਰਤਮਾਨ ਕਾਲ (present) e.g. ਖਾਂਦਾ (eat) or ਭਵਿਖ ਕਾਲ (future) ਖਾਂਵਾਂਗਾ (will eat).

Inflection and Declension


Grammar, in large part, deals with functionality related to word forms. Change of word forms due to its grammatical functionality, in general, is called inflection and in the case of noun, pronoun and adjective declension. We shall examine the rules of inflection and declension in this module.