Unit 4 : How to Talk about your life : “Routine Days”

1. Asking questions in the present-future tense : 

In Uyghur, the present-future tense is used to ask about a regular repeated action or a future likely event :

  • Ular bu yerde ishlemdu ? = Do they work here ?
  • Siz her küni oqumsiz ? = Do you study everyday ?
  • U Ürumchige baramdu ? = Will she/he go to Ürumchi ?

As you can see, the present-future tense is formed by affixing “am, “em” or “m” to the verb. This interrogative suffx is followed by a suffix marking person (1st, 2nd, 3rd) and number (singular/plural). Firstly we will concentrate on the first type of person endings :

  • -dimen (1st person, singular)
  • -sen/siz (2nd person, singular)
  • -du (3rd person, singular)
  • -duq/dimiz (1st person, plural)
  • -siler/sizler (2nd person, plural)
  • -du (3rd person, plural)

When you combine these endings with the interrogative suffix we get :

  • verb + (a)mdim or (a)mdimen
  • verb + (a)msen or (a)msiz
  • verb + (a)mdu
  • verb + (a)mduq
  • verb + (a)msiler
  • verb + (a)mdu

I made a quick list of some useful verbs for you , in the interrogative present-future tense :

  • qil : qilamdimen, qilamsen, qilamsiz, qilamdu, qilamduq, qilamsiler, qilamdu ? = do I, do you,…
  • bar : baramdimen, baramsen, baramsiz, baramdu, baramduq, baramsiler, baramdu ? = do I go, do you go,…
  • kör : köremdimen, köremsen, köremsiz, köremdu, köremduq, köremsiler, köremdu ? = do I see, do you see,…
  • bil : bilemdimen, bilemsen, bilemsiz, bilemdu, bilemduq, bilemsiler, bilemdu ? = do I know, do you know,…
  • ber : béremdimen, béremsen, béremsiz, béremdu, béremduq, béremsiler, béremdu ? = do I give, do you give,…
  • ögen : öginemdimen, öginemsen, öginemsiz, öginemdu, öginemduq, öginemsiler, öginemdu ? = do I study,…
  • izde : izdemdimen, izdemsen, izdemsiz, izdemdu, izdemduq, izdemsiler, izdemdu ? = do I search,…
  • oqu : oqumdimen, oqumsen, oqumsiz, oqumdu, oqumduq, oqumsiler, oqumdu ? = do I read, do you read,…

2. Interrogative present-future using the particle mu

It is also possible to make question tags with the particle “mu”, like in the unit 1. But it is only possible for the 1st person simply, for instance : barimenmu ? (will I go ?), beware that you cannot say “barisenmu”.

3. Negating the present-future tense

It is negated by following the negative suffix “-ma/me”, and the present-future “-y” followed by the person suffixes type 1. Here are the examples that will help you to learn :

  • bar : barmaymen, barmaysen, barmaysiz, barmaydu, barmaymiz, barmaysiler, barmaydu = I won’t go,…
  • kör : körmeymen, körmeysen, körmeysiz, körmeydu, körmeymiz, körmeysiler, körmeydu = I won’t see,…
  • ishle : ishlimeymen, ishlimeysen, ishlimeysiz, ishlimeydu, ishlimeymiz, ishlimeysiler, ishlimeydu = I won’t work…
  • ye : yémeymen, yémeysen, yémeysiz, yémeydu, yémeymiz, yémeysiler, yémeydu = I won’t eat,…

3.2 Usage :

Negative phrases can be made about the present state of affairs, a regular action or a future certain event :

  • Ular bu yerde ishlimeydu = They don’t/won’t work here
  • Men her küni oqumaymen = I don’t/won’t study everyday
  • Aynur Ürumchige barmaydu = Aynur doesn’t/won’t go to Ürumchi

4. Negative questions in the present-future tense :

These are primarily used either when a speaker does not believe something, or wants to make sure about she/he understood/heard. It is formed by combining the negative suffix “-ma” and the interrogative suffix “-am”.

  • bar : barmamdimen, barmamsen, barmamsiz, barmamdu, barmamduq, barmamsiler, barmamdu ?
  • kör : körmemdimen, körmemsen, körmemsiz, körmemdu, körmemduq, körmemsiler, körmemdu ?
  • ishle : ishlimemdimen, ishlimemsen, ishlimemsiz, ishlimemdu, ishlimemduq, ishlimemsiler, ishlimemdu ?

Don’t forget that you can use the negated present-future tense to suggest something like : “Ete kelmemsen emse” which means “Why don’t you come tomorrow, then” (=please come tomorrow). Here are some 3rd person examples of the present-future tense :

Affirmative & Declarative : 

  • yazidu, turidu, kélidu, öginidu, oquydu, anglaydu, ishleydu, yeydu

Affirmative & Interrogative : 

  • yazamdu ?, turamdu ?, kélemdu ?, öginemdu ?, oqumdu ?, anglamdu ?, ishlemdu ?, yemdu ?

Negative & Declarative : 

  • yazmaydu, turmaydu, kélmeydu, ögenmeydu, oqumaydu, anglimaydu, ishlimeydu, yémeydu

Negative & Interrogative : 

  • yazmamdu ?, turmamdu ?, kélmemdu ?, ögenmemdu ?, oqumamdu ?, anglimamdu ?, ishlimemdu ?, yémemdu ?

5. Language use notes : verbal compounds

They can be made from a noun and a verb, but be careful when those have different meanings,

  • dem al = have a rest/take a break
  • meshq qil = exercise/practice, do the exercises
  • ders öt = teach class/lecture
  • ders angla = attend class
  • imtihan al (almaq) = give an exam
  • imtihan ber (bermek) = take an exam

5.2 Different meanings of  the word “letter” : herp, xet

“Herp” refers to a single character or glyph, which means individual letters in an alphabet (a, b, c…). However, “xet” means a letter or certificate, also a handwritting (“xeti chiraylik” = his handwritting is beautiful).

5.3 Are you safe : tinchliqmu ?

“Tinchliq” means “peace, calm” and it is often pronounced “téchliq”. This expression is used after exchanging greetings, like “are you safe? / is everything alright?”. So :

  • Yaxshimusiz ! = Hello
  • Tinchliqmu ? = Is everything alright ?
  • Tinchliq = Fine / Great
  • Bolidu = Alright
  • Xudagha shükri, her halda yaman emes = Praise / Thank God, I’m not doing badly.

Exercise & Tips

I do advice you to make short dialogues again, it will help you to improve your Uyghur. You can also take some words and change them into prensent-future tense, in the affirmative or negative form for instance. Plus, put them in a clause, that is to say make affirmative sentences and change them into negative ones. Let someone ask you questions and reply him/her. Here an example :

  • Siz nede ishleysiz ?
  • Men bu mektepte ishleymen, sizmu bu yerde ishlemsiz ?
  • Yaq, men ishlimeymen, emma men bu yerde Uyghurche tili öginimen
  • Shundakmu? Siz In’glizche ders ötemsiz ? Siz muellim emesmu ?
  • Men In’glizche ötmeymen, lékin bir az qiyin. Sizmu ders béremsiz ?
  • Hee, men edebiyat fakultétida ders bérimen.