Lesson 35: Sanskrit for Beginners Course: Prefixes + Imperfect


Entire CH14. New spoken Sanskrit. Using Sandhi in LRB. Verbal prefixes. Imperfect (past tense). New verbs.

Source: Introduction to Sanskrit (4th Ed) – Thomas Egenes – Part One

This session deals with: CH14, pg 182-191.

Verb Prefix:

  • Subtly modifies verb meaning.
    • English EG: receive, perceive
    • Sanskrit EG:
      • ā आ : motion towards, return, to [some object].
        • Same as Eng: Adventure (towards a venture).
        • ā + gacchati = āgacchati  गच्छति   : He comes.
      • prati  प्रति  : back to, against.
        • prati + gacchati = pratigacchati  प्रतिगच्छति   : He returns, He goes back.
  • Verb prefix can also be used front of nouns, but rarely seen. It's mostly seen front of verbs.
  • Most verb prefixes change meaning of verb, but only a little. Few verb prefixes change the meaning entirely.
    • EG: avagacchati  अवगच्छति  : He goes down, He understands.
  • Subject to sandhi.
  • Verb prefix before gerund? Then end gerund with -ya -य, and NOT -tvā -त्वा.
    • EG: ā आ  +  √gam गम्  =  āgatya आगत्य  (Having come)  VS.  √gam गम्  = gatvā गत्वा (Having gone)
  • Verb prefix determines if verb takes Paramaipada or Ātmanepada ending. Dictionary will tell.

Imperfect (past tense):

  • What is it?
    • Past tense. Formed from present stem (EG: gaccha गच्छ, manya मन्य). Has a अ before stem. Has own set of endings [found here Garden PG4 (45, 46 / 53, 54)].
    • Parasmaipada:
      • a अ  STEM   P [ Garden PG4 (45, 46) ]
      • EG:  a     +  vada वद         +   t  त्       =  avadat वदत्        : He spoke/said.
    • Ātmanepada:
      • a अ  STEM   Ā [ Garden PG4 (53, 54) ]
      • EG:  a    +  bhāṣa भाष     +   ta अत   =  abhāṣata भाष  : He spoke/said.

Verb Prefix Imperfect:

  • We learned that verb prefix slightly modifies meaning of verb. EG: pratigacchati प्रतिगच्छति (He returns). But what if we want to make pratigacchati प्रतिगच्छति into an imperfect (He returned)? Then apply formula below…
    • verb prefix    +   a    +  stem    +   imperfect ending
  • Example:
    • prati प्रति  +   a    +  gaccha गच्छ    +    t त्           :  pratyagacchat  प्रत्यगच्छत्     (She returned)
    • ā       आ    +   a    +  gaccha गच्छ    +   am अम्    āgaccham          आगच्छम्      (I came)
  • Examples (mixing verb prefix and imperfect. All new verbs are on PG191):
Rāma brought flowers for Sītā. rāmaḥ puṣpāni senāyai ānayat  रामः पुष्पानि सेनायै नयत्
Army protected the men from suffering. senā duḥkāt narān agopāyat  सेना दुःकात् नरान् गोपायत्
I drank the water of immortality. aham amṛtasya jalam apibam  अहं मृतस्य जलं अपिबम्
Sage knows about the knowledge which brings happiness. > Which knowledge brings happiness, that sage knows. yat jñānam sukham ānayati tat ṛṣiḥ bodhate  यत् ज्ञानं सुखं नयति तत् ऋषिः बोधते
The girl approaches the boy and asks for a book. kanyā bālam upagacchati pustakāya ca pṛcchati  कन्या बालं उपगच्छति पुस्तकाय च पृच्छति



You'll have more questions throughout the course. How to ask? Leave in comments below, so others can also benefit. We'll respond within 48 hours. Only ask specific to this Lesson.


Recorded 16 May, 2021


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