PREFIXES: The prefix ka (also
pronounced kha) is used before adjectives and is also used
to form verbal nouns. The prefix a# or u# does not seem
to be so common as in Sopvoma.
ARTICLES: The indefinite article
is a#ka which follows the noun it qualifies as in mi a#ka-na,
a certain man (had two sons). As a matter of fact there
is no definite article. Its place is supplied by the
demonstrative pronoun chi, that, as in a#gato chi-na, the
younger brother (said).
NOUNS: Gender----- The usual
rule is followed for human relations: Thus-----
a#-va, father (or his father).
a#-va#, mother (or his mother).
a#-gato, brother (or his brother).
a#-gatuiva, sister (or his sister).
maya#rmo, man shano, woman.
noshino maya#rno, son. noshino
In the case of male and female
animals, it is indicated as follows:
sigui, horse sigu a#la#, mare.
simuk a#va#, bull simuk a#lA#,
f8a, dog f8a a#lA#, a bitch.
me-va#, he-goat me a#la#, nanny
sa#nga#i a#va#, male deer sa#nga#i
a#la, female deer.
har-va#, cock har-va, hen.
NUMBER: is only indicated when
the context renders it necessary. It is seen that biN is
used with human beings. Thus, a#va#-biN, fathers. ta#ra#ka,
many, and sa#ikora, all are used to indicate plurality of
the lower animals and of inanimate things. Thus sigui a#la#
ta#ra#ka, mares; silui sa#ikora homlu, look after (all)
CASE: Herein the Nominative
optionally takes the suffix na. It is always seen that it
does so before transitive verbs. Thus mi a#ka-na, a certain
man (had two sons); a:no maya#ra kharana chi-na lui-li laisa#i,
the elder son was in the field.
The Accusative usually has no
termination, but sometimes takes the Dative termination
li, as in a#-wui no-maya#ra-li ( I have beaten) his son.
The Instrumental has the usual
suffix na#, as in kitha#i-na thi-kijur-a (I) am nearly dying
The Dative takes li, as in a#va#-li
(said) to his father; lui-li (sent him) to the field.
The Ablative appends aina to
the genitive, as in rakhong-wui-aina, (draw water) from
The Genitive takes wui, as in----
your-father-of house-in, : in
your fathers house.
The Locative, like the Dative,
has li, as in shim-li, in the house.
ADJECTIVES: These adjectives
usually follow the noun they qualify, and do not change
for gender. The adjectival prefix is ka or kha.
Examples:mi ka-pha# aka-na,
a good man.
mi ka-pha#-bing-wui, of good
shano ka-pha#-bing, a good women.
noshino maya#rno ma-ka pha#
a#ka-na, a bad (not good) son.
sigui ka-chara chi-wui, of the
shim ka-teo chi-li, in that
But it may be mentioned here
that when an adjective is inflicted for comparison, or is
treated as a verb, verbal noun, or adjective, the prefix
ka is dropped. The following are the examples of comparison:
sa#ikora-wui pha#-mata#iya the
best (garment) of all.
PRONOUNS: The Personal Pronouns
i, I i-ihum, we.
na, thou na,na-thum, ye.
a#, he a#-thum, them.
The only irregularity is that,
besides the regular genitives, i-wui,na-wui, a#-wui, and
others, the termination wui may be dropped, as in
na-ming, your name; a#-va#,
The Demonstrative pronouns are
hi, this, as in sigui hi, this horse; and chi, that, as
in lupa chi, those rupees. The Interrogative Pronouns are
kapa#ka la or khipa#kala, who? khi, what? khi sa#ta# or
VERBS: When a verbal root ends
in a vowel, it often inserts a euphonie w or y before the
termination. Thus sho-w-a, strikes or struck; tho-nga#i-y-a,
craved. For the Verb Substantive, the root is lai, be or
possess; but for the present, it is usual to simply add
the suffix na to the object or subject. Thus sa#ikora-na-wuina,
all is yours; i-na, I am. The past is lai-sai, which is
translated both possessed and was.
Thus mi a#ka-na laisa#i, a certain man possessed (two sons)
(i.e. to a certain man there were two sons): a#-no-maya#ra
kharara chi-na lui-lilai-sa#i, the elder son was in the
field. The root sa#, which properly means do,
is also used as a verb substantive.
In this language there is no
distinction between Present and past time, the same being
left to be discovered from the context. The only real distinction
is between Future and Non Future time.
Present: Suffix --a, as in sho-w-a,
beats; thi-kijur-a, am nearly dying; pam-a, dwells; chat-a,
goes. When the root ends in the vowel a# or a8, i is substituted
for a as in sa#-i, did.
The present participle is sometimes
used for this tense, as in ha#ng-da, (they) say (what they
have heard from their forefathers
Present Definite: The suffix
li is added to the root, or the suffix lai-li (the present
definite tense of the verb substantive) is added to the
present participle. Thus, sho-li or sho-da lai-li, is striking;
kha#ng-mi-za#-da lai-li, is giving to eat; chat-li or chat-ta
lai-li, is going; sa#-li or sa-da lai-li, is doing.
Imperfect: The suffix sa#i is
added to the root or lai-sa#i (the imperfect tense of the
verb substantive) is added to the present participle. Thus
sho-sa#i or sho-da lai-sai was striking, chat-sa#i or chat-ta
lai-sa#i was going; sa#-sa#i or sa#-da lai-sa#i was doing.
sa#i itself is the present or past of the root sa#, do.
Past: As in present, the suffix
is a after consonants, and i after the vowels a# or a. Thus
sho-w-a, struck; chat-a, went; ha#ng-a, said; tho nga#i-y-a,
craved; mashi-tu-w-a, joined; chat-tu-w-a, went; maya-i,
Perfect: In this matter the
suffixes are ha#i, ha#ira, howa or hora. thus chit-ha#i,
chat-ha#ira, chat-howa or chat-hora, has gone; sa#-ha#i,
sa-ha#ira, sa#-howa, sa#-hora, has done. Similarly, chi-ho-hai,
sent (him to the field); ka#nsar-howa, spent; sala#k-howa,
became dear; khanang-howa, became wretched; ngaphit-howa,
have beaten. It will be observed in many cases that these
forms have the power of the simple past.
Pluperfect: The suffix is ha#ira-sai.
Thus sho-ha#ira-sa#i, had struck; chat-ha#ira-sa#i, had
gone; sa#-ha#ira-sa#i, had done.
Future: The future tense takes
two suffixes. It takes ra to form a distant future, and
ga to form an immediate future. After a hard consonant;
ga becomes ka.Thus sho-ra or sho-ga will strike; sa#-ra
or sa#-ga, will do or will be; chat-ra or chat-ka, will
go; ung-ha#ng-ga returning (I) shall say; sho-that-ka (I)
Continuative Future: This is
formed by suffixing the future of the verb sa# to the root,
as in chat sa#-ra, shall be going; sa# sa#-ra, shall be
Future Perfect: This is formed
by suffixing sa#-ra to the perfect, as in chat-ha#ira sa#-ra,
shall have gone; sa#-ha#ira sa#-ra, shall have done.
Present Subjunctive: The forms
given are sa#-pa#i, may be or do; sho-pa#i, may strike.
Imperative: The suffix is lu,
as in sho-lu, strike; chat-lu, go; mi-ho-lu, give (this
rupee); sa#-ngasak-mi-lu, cause me to be (thy servant);
kui-tu-lu, take (those rupees); sok-kui-lu, draw (water).
The syllable ka or kha prefixed makes a polite imperative.
Verbal Noun or Infinitives-------
Formed by the prefix ka or kha, as in ka-sho, to strike;
ka chat,to go ; ka-sa#, to do or to be; ka-shak ka-za#,
food; ka-maya, kissing; kha-ra, to come.
Present Participle: The suffix
is da, or it is seen that after a hard consonant, the suffix
is ta. Thus, sho-da, striking; za#-nga#i-da, wishing to
eat; angkar-thui-da, rising; thai-da, seeing; chat-ta, going.
Past Participle: The suffix
is ha#i-ra-da,as in sa#-ha#irada, having been or done.
Adverbial Participle: The example
for adverbial participle is as follows:
ka#n-ka#hai-aina, on being spent.
Casual Verbs: These are formed
by suffixing ngasak, as in chat-ngasak, caused to do. The
verb mi, give, is also used in this connection, as in sa#-ngasak-mi-lu,
cause to be.
As in other cognate languages,
there is no passive. I am struck is rendered
struck me, i-li sho-sai.
Negative Verb: The negative
participle is ma, as in ma-ka-pha#, not good, bad. The only
example of a negative participle is ma-ra#la#karanu, let
him not come here.
Interrogative: The Interrogative
participle kala is placed at the end of the sentence, as
in chi ka-li lola-kala, from whom did you buy that?
Compound Verbs: There are numerous
compound verbs. The following are Desiderative: za#-nga#i-da,
wishing to eat ; ma-ka#-nga#i, did not wish to go.
There are three tones in the Thangkhul language. They are
rising, falling and the level tone. It may be mentioned
here that tones are suprasegmental features. The tonal differences
in a particular language are studied by the pitch differences
found in it. The variation of the tension that is maintained
in the vocal cords causes the pitch differences while producing
the sounds of the language.