Lesson Two 3 l
There are soldiers.
Note th at this sentence has been translated as pl ural despite the fact th at there is
no plural mark er. This is typical of Tibetan sy ntax. When no mark er of "si ngular" is
present, it is assum ed that the sentence construction is pl ural . If one wa nted to convey the
meani ng "There i s a sol di er" nornlally the subject ("soldier") would be modifi ed by the
word "one.'" The existential verb, however, would not change.
b. སློབ་གྲྭ་བ་གཅིག་ཡོད་པ་རེད།
lābd aà [lōbdawa] chī3 y ɔ̲ɔ̀reè
student one exi st
There is a (one) student.
Plural numbers are also used to modify the subject.
c. བོ་ད་པ་ག་ སུ་མ་འདུག།
pö̲ba sūm du̲ù i̅
tibetan three exist
There are three Tibetans.
d. གཞོན་ ་ནུ་གཉིས་འདུག།
shö̲nnu ñī̀ duù
youth two exist
There are two youths.
i̅A s with linki ng verbs, one way to construct questi ons is by m ea ns of questi on
particles p l aced after the verb. A fter ཡོད་པ་རེད་ , either the partic l e པས་ (m ore colloquial) or
དམ་ (more literary) i s used. A nd after འདུག་, either གས་ or གམ་ is used.
e. བོ་ད་པ་ག་ སུམ་འདུག་ག་ pö̲ba
pö̲ba sūm dugɛi̅
tibetaun three exist ?
Are therethree Tibetans?
f. བོད་པ་གསུམ་འདུག་གམ།
pö̲ba sūm dugam
ti beta n three exist ?
Are there three Tibetans?
g. དམག་མི་ཡོད་པ་རེད་པ་ mə̅རྱmiyɔ̲ɔ̀reb
mə̅རྱmiyɔ̲ɔ̀rebɛ
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3 Chīis the col loquial pronunciation of jīg. Transcriptions i n bracketsrepresent reading
pronunciations.
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