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Advanced Turkish Words Worth Learning

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Have you completed the intermediate level in your Turkish studies? Would you like to continue improving your language skills in order to stand out and impress native speakers? 

Then you’ve hit the bullseye! You’re at the right address. 

In this article, we will introduce you to all of the essential advanced Turkish words you should know. This includes general vocabulary for everyday life, as well as words related to academia, business, the legal system, and medicine. At the end, we’ll also show you several words you can incorporate into your essays or writing tests to score higher. 

Learning these advanced Turkish vocabulary words will require more diligence and effort, but if you stay focused on the target, you’ll reap the fruits of your hard work.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Advanced Words for Everyday Life
  2. Advanced Academic Vocabulary
  3. Advanced Business Vocabulary
  4. Advanced Medical Vocabulary
  5. Advanced Legal Vocabulary
  6. Advanced Vocabulary for Essay Writing
  7. Raise the Bar with TurkishClass101

1. Advanced Words for Everyday Life

First, let’s look at advanced Turkish words you’ll find useful in your day-to-day interactions with native speakers. We have categorized these words based on part of speech and included an example sentence for each one. 

Nouns

MadenTürkiye’nin en büyük altın madeni Kışladağ altın madenidir.
MineThe Kışladağ gold mine is the largest gold mine in Turkey.

KapşonKapşonunu geçir; dışarıda hava soğuk.
HoodPut your hood up; it’s cold outside.

MaddeMaddenin üç hali vardır: sıvı, gaz ve katı.
MatterMatter has three states: liquid, gas, and solid.

MazeretDersi kaçırdım ama geçerli bir mazeretim vardı.
ExcuseI missed the class, but I had a legitimate excuse.

CiddiyetHayatın ciddiyetini yeni fark etti.
Seriousness(S)he just realized the seriousness of life.

ÇareÖlümden başka her şeyin bir çaresi vardır.
RemedyThere is a remedy for everything except death.

Adjectives

CimriHenry çok cimri bir insandır.
StingyHenry is a very stingy person.

Art niyetliOndan uzak dur; o çok art niyetli biri.
MalevolentStay away from him/her; (s)he is a very malevolent person.

MarifetliO el işlerinde çok marifetlidir.
Skillful(S)he is very skillful with handicrafts.

MasumBence o masum; ben ona inanıyorum.
InnocentI think (s)he is innocent; I believe him/her.

SuçluO suçlu bulundu ve ceza aldı.
Guilty(S)he was found guilty and was sentenced.

Aç gözlüMary hep daha fazlasını ister; o çok aç gözlüdür.
GreedyMary always wants more; she is very greedy.

Adverbs

CesurcaTebrik ederim, cesurca her şeyi söyledin ona.
BravelyCongratulations, you bravely said everything to him/her.

CömertçeTüm parasını cömertçe ağlayan çocuğa verdi.
Generously(S)he gave all his/her money generously to the crying boy/girl.

Ciddi bir şekildeBu konuyu ciddi bir şekilde düşünmeni istiyorum.
SeriouslyI want you to think about this subject seriously.

Tam olarakTam olarak nerede olduğunu bilmek istiyorum.
ExactlyI want to know exactly where you are.

Verbs

EleştirmekEleştir ama lütfen yapıcı ol.
To criticizeCriticize, but please be constructive.

FısıldamakKardeşim annemin duymasını istemediği için kulağıma yavaşça fısıldadı.
To whisperMy sibling whispered softly in my ear because (s)he didn’t want my mom to hear.

EşleştirmekAşağıdaki kelimeleri tanımları ile eşleştirin.
To matchMatch the words below with their definitions.

Tepki vermek/göstermekBu duruma aşırı tepki gösteriyorsun.
To reactYou are overreacting to this situation.

KarşılaştırmakBu iki tabloyu karşılaştırman gerek.
To compareYou need to compare these two tables.

KatlamakKazaklarını bavula koymadan önce katla lütfen.
To foldPlease fold your sweaters before you put them in the suitcase.

AşırmakMutfaktan bir tane kurabiye aşırdım.
To stealI stole a cookie from the kitchen.

FırlatmakTopu yukarı fırlattım ama pencereye çarptı.
To throwI threw the ball up, but it hit the window.

SarkmakKollarınızın omuzlarınızdan serbestçe sarkmasına izin verin.
To dangle fromLet your arms dangle freely from your shoulders.

2. Advanced Academic Vocabulary

Do you plan to attend university in Turkey? Then you’ll greatly benefit from learning these advanced Turkish words related to academia. These words will help you understand lectures, write essays, and perform well on tests. 

Nouns

TezTezinizi yazarken net cümleler kullanın.
Thesis / PaperUse clear sentences when writing your thesis/paper.

MakaleMakale yazarken alıntılama kurallarına dikkat etmen gerekir.
ArticleWhen writing an article, you should pay attention to the rules of citation.

AraştırmaAraştırma konun nedir?
ResearchWhat is your research topic?

TaslakMakaleni yazmadan önce bir taslak oluşturmalısın.
OutlineBefore you write your article, you should create an outline.

AnketBu araştırma için on tane anket yaptım.
SurveyI did ten surveys for this research.

Kanıt / DelilTeorini ispatlamak için kanıt sunman gerekir.
EvidenceTo prove your theory, you have to provide evidence.

AlıntıLütfen alıntı kurallarına dikkat et.
CitationPlease pay attention to the citation rules.

VeriVerileri göndermeniz gerekiyor.
DataYou need to submit the data.

SunumAraştırmam ile ilgili bir sunum yapacağım.
Presentation  I will make a presentation about my research.

ProjeBitirme projemi yarın teslim etmem lazım.
ProjectI have to deliver my graduation project tomorrow.

TabloVerileri Excel tablosuna aktarmak gerekiyor.
TableIt is necessary to transfer the data to the Excel table.

SatırTablo 50 satırdan oluşmaktadır.
RowThe table consists of 50 rows.  

SütunTablo 50 sütundan oluşmaktadır.
ColumnThe table consists of 50 columns.  

Verbs

GöstermekBu çalışmanın sonuçlarını göstermek gerek.
To demonstrateIt is necessary to demonstrate the results of this study.

İçermekBu dosya tüm verileri içermektedir.
To include / To involveThis file includes all the data.

Analiz etmekAnaliz etmeden sonuca varamazsın.
To analyzeYou can’t come to a conclusion without analyzing it.

ÇözmekBu soruyu çözmek için tam 20 dakika harcadım.
To solveI spent 20 minutes solving this question.

Deney yapmakDeney yapmak için laboratuvara gidiyorum.
To experimentI’m going to the lab to do an experiment.

SunmakYarın projemi sunacağım.   
To present  I will present my project tomorrow.

ÖlçmekTabloyu oluşturmak için önce malzemeleri ölçmek lazım.    
To measureIn order to create the table, we first need to measure the materials.

YorumlamakÖncelikle bu rakamları yorumlamak lazım.     
To interpretFirst of all, these numbers should be interpreted.

Kontrol etmekKendini kontrol etmeyi öğrenmelisin.
To controlYou have to learn to control yourself.

TartışmakBilim adamları bu konuyu kendi aralarında tartıştılar.
To discussScientists discussed this topic among themselves.

KanıtlamakO hipotezini kanıtladı.
To prove(S)he proved his hypothesis.

EtkinleştirmekŞifreni etkinleştirmeyi unutma!
To activateDon’t forget to activate your password.

A Wman in a Graduation Cap and Gown, Smiling and Holding a Diploma

3. Advanced Business Vocabulary

Impress your colleagues by using the following advanced Turkish vocabulary words related to the business world. 

Genel müdürlükGenel müdürlük başka bir yere taşındı.
HeadquartersThe headquarters moved to another location.

VizyonÇalıştığım şirket vizyonunu geliştiren bir şirket olduğu için çok şanslıyım.
VisionI’m very lucky that the company I work for is a company that enhances its vision.

MisyonBir şirketin vizyonu kadar misyonu da önemlidir.
MissionA company’s mission is as important as its vision.

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation Image

StratejiPandemi dolayısıyla satış stratejimizi değiştirmemiz gerek.
StrategyBecause of the pandemic, we need to change our sales strategy.

KârBu yılki kâr marjımız %10 daha yüksek.   
ProfitOur profit margin is 10% higher this year.

YatırımBu yıl yatırımlarımızı artırmamız lazım.
InvestmentThis year, we need to increase our investments.

FonYeterince fonumuz yok.
FundWe don’t have enough funds.

MasrafSabit masraflarımızı düşürmemiz gerek.
ExpenseWe need to reduce our fixed costs.

MaliBu yıl mali açıdan güçlüyüz.
FinancialThis year, we are strong in terms of finances.

Faiz oranıFaiz oranları düştü.  
Interest rateInterest rates have dropped.

VarlıkAraçlar sabit varlık olarak kabul edilir.
AssetVehicles are considered fixed assets.

MalBu mallar için büyük bir depoya ihtiyacımız var.
Merchandise / GoodsWe need a large warehouse for these goods.

MalzemeMalzeme ihtiyaç listesi üzerinde çalışıyorum.
MaterialI am working on a material requirements list.

EnvanterYarın envanter sayımı yapılacak.
Inventory  There will be an inventory count tomorrow.

DepartmanSatınalma departmanında çalışıyorum.
DepartmentI work in the purchasing department.

MuhasebeBordro kesintilerinizi muhasebe departmanına sorabilirsiniz.
AccountingYou can tell the accounting department about your payroll deductions.

İnsan KaynaklarıÖzgeçmişinizi insan kaynakları departmanına gönderin.
Human ResourcesSend your CV to the human resources department.

SatışSatış hedeflerimizi belirledik.
SalesWe determined our sales goals.

Satın almaOnların merkezi bir satın alma departmanları var.
PurchasingThey have a central purchasing department.

SözleşmeYeni bir satış sözleşmesi yaptık.
ContractWe made a new sales contract.

4. Advanced Medical Vocabulary

Another set of important words in Turkish for advanced learners is medical vocabulary. Whether you plan to attend medical school in Turkey or happen to find yourself in the ER during your travels, knowing these words and terms will prove quite useful. 

Nouns

Acil servis Baş ağrım beni öldürüyordu, bu yüzden acil servise gitmem gerekti.
Emergency roomMy headache was killing me, so I had to go to the emergency room.

Yoğun bakım Teyzem henüz yoğun bakımdan çıkmadı.
Intensive careMy aunt has not left intensive care yet.

Ameliyathane Ameliyat için beni ameliyathaneye götürmek üzereler.
Surgery roomThey are about to take me to the surgery room for the operation.

Tansiyon Tansiyonum yüksek; hemen hastaneye gitmem lazım.
Blood pressureMy blood pressure is high; I have to go to the hospital.

Alerji Baharda alerji belirtileri artıyor.
AllergyAllergy symptoms increase in the spring.

A Doctor Pointing to Something on a Clipboard that a Nurse Is Holding

Bağışıklık Bağışıklık sistemini güçlü tutman gerek.
ImmunityYou need to keep your immune system strong.

Röntgen Acilen röntgen çektirmem gerekiyor.
X-rayI urgently need to get an X-ray.

Kalp krizi Arkadaşım yakın zaman içinde kalp krizi geçirdi.
Heart attackMy friend has recently had a heart attack.    

Kanser Amcam kanserden öldü.  
Cancer  My uncle died of cancer.

Ameliyat Ameliyat gayet başarılı geçti.
SurgeryThe surgery was very successful.

Anestezi Ameliyat genel anestezi ile yapıldı.
AnesthesiaThe surgery was carried out under general anesthesia.

Teşhis Sam’in teşhisinde çok geç kaldılar.
DiagnosisThey were too late for Sam’s diagnosis.

Travma Okulda çıkan yangının ardından öğrenciler travma tedavisi gördü.
TraumaThe students were treated for trauma after the fire at school.  

Yara Şaşırtıcı bir şekilde, yara kendi kendine iyileşti.
WoundTo my surprise, the wound healed itself.

Tedavi O kanser tedavisi görüyor.
Treatment(S)he is getting cancer treatment.

Reçete Doktor reçete yazdı mı?
PrescriptionHas the doctor written a prescription?

Yan etki Bu ilacın bilinen bir yan etkisi yoktur.
Side effectThis medicine has no known side effects.

  Aşı Corona aşısını uzun bir süre bekledik.
VaccineWe have waited for the Coronavirus vaccine for a long time.

  İğne Doktor başımın ağrısı için iğne yaptı.
InjectionThe doctor gave me an injection for my headache.

Adjectives

Bulaşıcı Corona bulaşıcı bir virüstür.
ContagiousThe Coronavirus is a contagious virus.

Steril Ameliyathaneler mutlaka steril olmalı.
SterileSurgery rooms must be absolutely sterile.

5. Advanced Legal Vocabulary

As you approach an advanced level in Turkish, you’ll benefit from picking up at least a few words related to the legal system. This will allow you to follow the news with greater ease, engage in more complex conversations, and even avoid unfortunate misunderstandings. Here’s the advanced legal vocabulary in Turkish you should start learning: 

Nouns

HukukHukuk önünde herkes eşittir.
LawEveryone is equal before the law.

AdaletAdalete inanıyorum.
JusticeI believe in justice.

A Gavel, Some Thick Books, and a Scale

İnsan haklarıİnsan hakları hakkında hiçbir şey bilmiyorlar.
Human rights  They know nothing about human rights.

AvukatBu konuda with avukata danışmam lazım.
LawyerI need to consult with a lawyer on this matter.

HâkimHâkim davayı erteledi.
JudgeThe judge adjourned the case.

NoterBu belgenin bir noter tarafından onaylanması gerekiyor.
NotaryThis document needs to be certified by a notary.

Tanık / ŞahitTanık hırsızın kaçtığını söyledi.
WitnessThe witness said the robber escaped.

MahkemeMahkemede çok heyecanlandım.
CourtI got very excited in court.

HapishaneHapishanede kavga çıktı.
Jail / PrisonA fight broke out in prison.

SabıkalıOnun bir sabıkalı olduğunu duyduğumda şok oldum.
CriminalI was shocked when I heard he was a criminal.

ŞüpheliŞüpheli polis koruması altındaydı.
SuspectThe suspect was under police protection.

DavaOnları dava açmakla tehdit ettim.
LawsuitI threatened to file a lawsuit against them.

DuruşmaAvukat duruşma sırasında kalp krizi geçirdi.
TrialThe lawyer had a heart attack during the trial.

SoruşturmaSoruşturma henüz bitmedi.
InvestigationThe investigation is not over yet.

Para cezasıHapis yerine para cezası aldı.
Fine(S)he got a fine rather than prison.

Adjective

Kanuni / Yasal  Uyuşturucu kullanmak kanuni/yasal değildir.
Legal  It’s not legal to use drugs.

Verbs

SavunmakAvukatım seni iyi savunacaktır.
To defendMy attorney will defend you well.

İhlal etmekTrafik kurallarını ihlal ettiği için para cezası aldı.
To violate(S)he was fined for violating traffic rules.

Beraat etmekArkadaşım nihayet suçsuz bulundu ve beraat etti.
To be acquittedMy friend was finally found not guilty and has been acquitted.

Teşhis etmekSonunda şüpheliyi teşhis edebildi.
To identifyFinally, (s)he was able to identify the suspect.

6. Advanced Vocabulary for Essay Writing

Are you attending school in Turkey? Then there are a few advanced Turkish words and phrases you should know in order to write better essays, score higher on exams, and impress your teachers. 

Nouns

Önemli noktaKitabın önemli noktası ana karakterin psikolojisiydi.
HighlightThe highlight of the book was the main character’s psychology.

İçerikİçerik belirleme konu seçimi kadar önemlidir.
ContentContent determination is as important as topic selection.

UygulamaUygulama bazen teoriden daha önemlidir.
Practice / ApplicationPractice is sometimes more important than theory.

TerminolojiDoktorun dediklerinden hiçbir şey anlamadım; sürekli tıp terminolojisi kullanıyor.
TerminologyI did not understand anything the doctor said; he was constantly using medical terminology.

Adjectives

YüzeyselYüzeysel bir yaklaşımdan uzak durmalısın.
SuperficialYou should avoid a superficial approach.

AyrıntılıBunu daha ayrıntılı bir şekilde anlatmalısın.
DetailedYou should explain this in a more detailed way.

GerekliÖrneklerin verilmesi gereklidir.
NecessaryProviding examples is necessary. 

GeçerliBana geçerli bir neden söylemelisin.
ValidYou must tell me a valid reason.

GeçersizBu veriler geçersiz.
InvalidThis data is invalid.

Adverbs

İstikrarlı bir şekildeJack, öğretmeni onu uyardığından beri her gün istikrarlı bir şekilde okula zamanında geliyor.
ConsistentlyJack has been coming to school consistently on time every day ever since his teacher warned him.

KesinlikleSana kesinlikle katılıyorum.
DefinitelyI definitely agree with you.

TamamenBu durumda tamamen sen haklısın.
ExactlyIn this case, you are exactly right.

Verbs

İfade etmekYanlış anlaşılmak istemiyorsan kendini daha iyi ifade etmelisin.
To expressIf you don’t want to be misunderstood, you should express yourself better.

YönlendirmekTüm çabalarınızı kitabınızı yazmaya yönlendirin.
To directDirect all your efforts into writing your book.

EtkilemekOkuyucuları etkilemek istiyorsan daha içten yazmalısın.
To impressIf you want to impress readers, you have to write more sincerely.

VurgulamakAna fikri daha çok vurgulamalısın.
To emphasizeYou should emphasize the main idea more.

AlgılamakBu sessizliği kabullenme olarak algılama.
To perceiveDon’t perceive this silence as acceptance.

KeşfetmekSenin nasıl bir hayal dünyan olduğunu keşfetmek istiyorum.
To exploreI want to explore what kind of a fantasy world you have.

Maruz kalmakNükleer santralde meydana gelen kaza nedeniyle çok sayıda kişi radyasyona maruz kaldı.
To be exposed toMany people were exposed to radiation because of the accident at the nuclear plant.

Ortaya çıkarmak  Tanık onun aradığı cevapları ortaya çıkardı.
To revealThe witness revealed the answers (s)he was looking for.

OnaylamakBu siparişi onaylıyorum.
To confirmI’m confirming this order.

Desteklemek  Bu fikrini destekleyecek argümanlar bulmalısın.
To supportYou need to find arguments to support this idea.

ReddetmekTeklifi neden reddettiğini bana hemen söylemelisin.
To rejectYou need to tell me right now why you rejected the offer.

Düzene sokmak/düzenlemek  Bütçemizi düzenlemek için elimizden gelenin en iyisini yapmalıyız.
To regulateWe must try our best to regulate our budget.

Essay Writing

KısıtlamakAslında o, onun faaliyetlerini kısıtlamak istemedi.
To restrictActually, (s)he didn’t mean to restrict his/her activities.

7. Raise the Bar with TurkishClass101

You now have easy access to a long list of advanced Turkish words in a variety of categories. Make sure to add the most relevant words to your flashcard deck and start practicing right away! 

You can learn even more advanced Turkish words at TurkishClass101.com by making use of our vocabulary lists, free resources, and online Turkish dictionary. For 1-on-1 coaching and personalized assignments, you can upgrade to Premium PLUS and take advantage of our MyTeacher service. 

Not sure where to start? We recommend checking out our advanced Turkish lesson series, which contains 25 lessons and assignments designed for advanced learners like yourself.  

What’s more, you can download the free app to learn Turkish wherever you are! 

Last but not least, please continue to provide us with feedback about all the resources provided at TurkishClass101

Happy learning!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish

Negation in the Turkish Language – HAYIR!

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In life, there are times when we just need to say “no.” Whether we’re refusing something offered to us, rejecting an action or idea, or letting someone know we weren’t responsible for something, this little word and its friend “not” come in handy on a daily basis. 

However, whatever the intentions behind your negative sentences, the way you say them makes a huge difference!

No!

Today, you’ll learn about negation in the Turkish language. This article will cover everything you need to know, from how to form basic negative sentences to how double negation works. 

Let’s dive in!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Negation in Sentences
  2. Negation in Interrogative Sentences
  3. Double Negation
  4. Access Full Turkish Grammar Content on TurkishClass101.com

1. Negation in Sentences

In Turkish, negative sentences can be formed in one of two ways:

1. By using negation words
2. By using suffixes

Let’s take a closer look at each Turkish negation method. 

A- Negation Words

If you wish to negate a noun clause, place the word değil (“not”) at the end of the sentence. This will give you the form: 

X is not Y. 

Let’s take a look at some examples:

Turkish (+)English (+)Turkish (-)English (-)
Bu benim kitabım.This is my book.Bu benim kitabım değil.This is not my book.
Selen güzel bir kız.Selen is a beautiful girl.Selen güzel bir kız değil.Selen is not a beautiful girl.

Here are some other words you can use to make a sentence negative in Turkish: 

Hayır (No)

  • Hayır, kızgın değilim. (No, I am not angry.)

Yok (There isn’t / There aren’t)

  • Bu dairede balkon yok. (There isn’t a balcony in this apartment.)
  • Burada hiç araba yok. (There aren’t any cars here.)

Ne…ne[de] (Neither…nor)

  • Ne kedi severim, ne de köpek. (I like neither cats nor dogs.)

In most cases, ne…ne (de) is used with a positive verb. However, there are also some cases where it’s used with a negative verb. Here are some examples:

  • Ne Paris’e, ne de Roma’ya hiç gitmemiş. (She/he has gone to neither Paris nor Rome.)
  • Ne sevdim diyebilirim, ne de sevmedim. (I can say neither that I liked it nor disliked it.)

And here are some words that are only used in negative sentences (with one exception, which we’ll talk about later): 

Hiç (Ever / Never / At all)

  • Siyahı hiç sevmem. (I don’t like black at all.)
  • Kanada’yı hiç görmedim. (I have never seen Canada.)             

Asla (Never)

  • Onunla asla bir daha konuşmayacağım. (I will never talk to him/her again.)

Hiç kimse (Nobody)

  • Hiç kimse fikrimi değiştiremez. (Nobody can change my opinion.)

Hiç bir şekilde (In no way)

  • Hiç bir şekilde seni affetmeyeceğim. (In no way will I forgive you.)

Hiçbir yerde (Nowhere / Anywhere)

  • O hiç bir yerde uzun süre kalamaz. (He/she can’t stay anywhere too long.)

A Quick Note on Negative Prefixes 

Unlike English, Turkish has very few words that take a prefix in order to become negative (think “unprepared” or “improper”). We have only the negation prefixes and , which are inherited from Ottoman Turkish and are rarely used today. Here are some examples:

  • Tamam (Complete)
  • -tamam (Incomplete)
  • Haberdar (Informed)
  • haber (Uninformed)

B- Suffixes

There are a few different Turkish negative suffixes you should know about. They are: 

-me / -ma 

To make a verb negative, the suffix -me is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an -e, -i, , or .

Infinitive (Turkish)Infinitive (English)Negative (Turkish)Negative (English)
SeçmekTo chooseSeçmemekNot to choose
İçmekTo drinkİçmemekNot to drink
GörmekTo seeGörmemekNot to see
GülmekTo laughGülmemekNot to laugh

To make a verb negative, the suffix -ma is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an -a, , -o, or -u.

Infinitive (Turkish)Infinitive (English)Negative (Turkish)Negative (English)
KalmakTo stayKalmamakNot to stay
SarılmakTo hugSarılmamakNot to hug
KoymakTo putKoymamakNot to put
UyumakTo sleepUyumamakNot to sleep

A verb may have many suffixes (such as those used to show the tense and the personal pronoun), but the negating suffix is always immediately after the verb root. All of the other suffixes follow the negating suffix, ordered just as though the verb were positive. Below are some examples:

Verb: To drink (İçmek)
Negative: Not to drink (İçmemek)

Personal PronounSimple Present Tense (+)Simple Present Tense(-)Future Tense (+)Future Tense (-)Simple Past Tense (+)Simple Past Tense (-)Reported Past Tense (+)Reported Past Tense(-)
Ben (I)İçerimİçmemİçeceğimİçmeyeceğimİçtimİçmedimİçmişimİçmemişim
Sen (You)İçersinİçmezsinİçeceksinİçmeyeceksinİçtinİçmedinİçmişsinİçmemişsin
O (He/She/It)İçerİçmezİçecekİçmeyecekİçtiİçmediİçmişİçmemiş
Biz (We)İçerizİçmeyizİçeceğizİçmeyeceğizİçtikİçmedikİçmişizİçmemişiz
Siz (You)İçersinizİçmezsinizİçeceksinizİçmeyeceksinizİçtinizİçmedinizİçmişsinizİçmemişsiniz
Onlar (They)İçerlerİçmezlerİçeceklerİçmeyeceklerİçtilerİçmedilerİçmişlerİçmemişler

Did you notice that the present continuous tense is not on the table? This is because there’s an exception. In the present continuous tense, the suffixes -mı, -mi, -mu, and -mü are used to make the verb negative based on the vowel in the last syllable of the verb:

  • If it’s “a” or “ı,” -mı is used.
  • If it’s “e” or “i,” -mi is used.
  • If it’s “o” or “u,” -mu is used.
  • If it’s “ö” or “ü,” -mü is used.

Verbs with a or ı in the last syllableVerbs with e or i in the last syllableVerbs with o or u in the last syllableVerbs with ö or ü in the last syllable

Personal PronounTo take (Almak)Not to take (Almamak)To cut (Kesmek)Not to cut (Kesmemek)To ask (Sormak)Not to ask (Sormamak)To cover (Örtmek)Not to cover (Örtmemek)
Ben (I)AlıyorumAlyorumKesiyorumKesmiyorumSoruyorumSormuyorumÖrtüyorumÖrtyorum
Sen (You)AlıyorsunAlyorsunKesiyorsunKesmiyorsunSoruyorsunSormuyorsunÖrtüyorsunÖrtyorsun
O (He/She/It)AlıyorAlyorKesiyorKesmiyorSoruyorSormuyorÖrtüyorÖrtyor
Biz (We)AlıyoruzAlyoruzKesiyoruzKesmiyoruzSoruyoruzSormuyoruzÖrtüyoruzÖrtyoruz
Siz (You)AlıyorsunuzAlyorsunuzKesiyorsunuzKesmiyorsunuzSoruyorsunuzSormuyorsunuzÖrtüyorsunuzÖrtyorsunuz
Onlar (They)AlıyorlarAlyorlarKesiyorlarKesmiyorlarSoruyorlarSormuyorlarÖrtüyorlarÖrtyorlar

Negation

-maz / – mez 

This suffix is added to the verb roots or stems in order to make them negative adjectives.

Examples:

  • Utan (verb root) 
    • Be ashamed
  • Utanmaz adam (becomes adjective) 
    • Shameless man 
  • Bilin (verb stem) 
    • Be known
  • Bilinmez kader (becomes adjective) 
    • Unknown fate

-madan / -meden

This suffix forms verbal adverbs; it comes after the verb root and makes it an adverb.

The suffix -madan is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an –a, , -o, or -u.

Al (verb root) / Take

  • Almadan / Without taking
  • Onu almadan gelme. / Don’t come without taking him/her/it.

Kır (verb root) / Break

  • Kırmadan / Without breaking
  • Kalbini kırmadan konuş. / Talk without breaking his/her heart.

Soy (verb root) / Peel

  • Soymadan / Without peeling
  • Elmayı soymadan yeme. / Don’t eat the apple without peeling it.

Kuru (verb root) / Dry

  • Kurumadan / Without drying
  • Yerler kurumadan basma. / Don’t step on the floor before it is dried.

The suffix -meden is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an -e, -i,, or .

Ver (verb root) / Give

  • Vermeden / Without giving
  • Vermeden alınmaz. / You can’t take without giving.

Bit (verb root) / Finish

  • Bitmeden / Without finishing
  • Ödevin bitmeden gitme. / Don’t go without finishing your homework.

Gör (verb root) / See

  • Görmeden / Without seeing
  • Beni görmeden gitme. / Don’t leave without seeing me.

Gül (verb root) / Laugh

  • Gülmeden / Without laughing
  • Gülmeden konuş / Talk without laughing

-maksınzın / -meksizin 

This suffix is added to the verb roots or stems in order to make them negative. The suffix -maksızın is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an -a,, -o, or -u. The suffix -meksizin is added to the root of the verb if the last syllable of the verb has an -e, -i, , or .

Bak (verb root) / Look

  • Bakmaksızın / Without looking
  • Arkasına bakmaksızın gitti. / (S)he went without looking back.

Sevil (verb stem) / Be loved

  • Sevilmeksizin / Without being loved
  • O sevilmeksizin sevdi. / (S)he loved without being loved.

-sız / -siz / -suz / -süz 

The -sız suffix makes negative adjectives from nouns. It may be used as -siz / -suz / -süz based on the vowel harmony.

  • Akıl (Mind)
  • Akılsız (Mindless)
  • Düşünce (Thought)
  • Düşüncesiz (Thoughtless)
  • Tuz (Salt)
  • Tuzsuz (Saltless)
  • Ölüm (Death)
  • Ölümsüz (Immortal)

-meyip / -mayıp 

These suffixes (based on the vowel harmony) are added to the verb roots and form another negation in the Turkish language.

Git (verb root) / Go

  • Gitmeyip / Without going
  • Keşke gitmeyip kalsaydın. / I wish you didn’t go, and stayed.

Gör (verb root) / See

  • Görmeyip / Without seeing OR Not seeing
  • Taksiyi görmeyip otobüse bindim. / I didn’t see the taxi, and got on the bus.

Ağla (verb root) / Cry

  • Ağlamayıp / Without crying OR Not crying
  • Ağlamayıp konuşmalıydın. / You should have spoken and not cried.

Koş (verb root) / Run

  • Koşmayıp / Without running OR Not running
  • Koşmayıp yürüseydin yorulmazdın. / You wouldn’t get tired if you didn’t run, and walked instead.

2. Negation in Interrogative Sentences

In Turkish, negative interrogative sentences are also formed in two ways:

1. By using negation words
2. By using suffixes

Negative Questions

A- Negation Words

We use the word değil (not) to make negative interrogative sentences. Here are some examples:

  • Sevgi üzgün değil mi? (Isn’t Sevgi sad?)
  • Bu ev sizin değil mi? (Isn’t this house yours?)
  • Beni arayan sen değil miydin? (Weren’t you the one who called me?)

B- Suffixes

Below, you’ll find the most important suffixes for Turkish negation when forming interrogatives. 

-me / -ma 

These suffixes are used exactly the same way as they’re used in negative declarative sentences. The conjugations for tense and the exception in the present continuous tense apply here as well. Below are some examples:

  • Dans etmeyi sevmez misin? (Don’t you like dancing?)
  • Bugün okula gitmeyecek misin? (Won’t you go to school today?)
  • Notumu okumadın mı? (Didn’t you read my note?)
  • Yemek yapmamış mı? (Hasn’t he/she cooked?)
  • Beni dinlemiyor musun? (Aren’t you listening to me?)

Last but not least, I would like to point out that exception I mentioned earlier in this article. The word hiç can also be used in affirmative interrogative sentences, but it has a negative meaning:

  • Hiç gider miyim sanıyorsun? (Do you think I’ll ever go?)

Here, the person implies that he/she won’t go. Although it’s used in an affirmative interrogative sentence, it has a negative meaning.

  • Senin gibi birine güvenir miyim hiç? (Would I ever trust someone like you?)

Again, the person implies here that he/she doesn’t trust the other person. Although it’s used in an affirmative interrogative sentence, it has a negative meaning.

3. Double Negation

In English, double negation normally leads to a positive meaning:

[ I don’t want nothing. ] = [ I want something. ]

However, this is not always the case in Turkish. There are certain cases where a double negative can result in a negative meaning, rather than a positive meaning. 

A- Negative verb + Olmaz (not to be)

  • Değişik mutfakları denemezsen olmaz. (It’s not okay if you don’t try other cuisines.)

Meaning: You need to try other cuisines.

  • Söz verdim, gitmezsek olmaz. (I promised; it’s not okay if we don’t go.)

Meaning: We need to go.

In both examples, the meaning is positive.

B- Negative verb + Kalmaz (not left)

  • Ona söylersen duymayan kalmaz. (If you tell him/her, there will be no one who does not hear.)

We can reword this as: If you tell him/her, everybody will hear.

  • Bunu gizlemezsen bilmeyen kalmaz. (If you don’t hide this, there won’t be anyone who doesn’t know it.)

In both examples, the meaning is positive.

C- Negative verb + Değil (not)

Söylediklerini anlayor değil. (It’s not that he/she doesn’t understand what you are saying.)

Meaning: He/she understands what you are saying.

Yine de her şey güzel olmadeğil. (It’s not that everything wasn’t good.)

Meaning: Everything was good.

In both examples, the meaning is positive.

D- Yok (there isn’t) + Değil (not)

Zamanım yok değil ama gitmeliyim. (It’s not that I don’t have time, but I have to go.)

In other words: I have time, but I have to go.

Param yok değil ama bunu alamam. (It’s not that I don’t have money, but I can’t buy this.)

In other words: I have money, but I can’t buy this.

In both examples, the meaning is positive.

E- Hiç (none / not at all) + Yok (there isn’t)

  • Bende sabır hiç yok. (I don’t have patience at all.)

Double Negation

Unlike all the other sentences we’ve looked at here, this sentence has a negative meaning although there is double negation.

F- Word + -sız / -siz olmaz (not to be)

  • Bu parti sensiz olmaz. (This party won’t be without you.)

Here’s another sentence with a negative meaning. 

G- Word + -sız / -siz değil (not)

İnan bana, o ilgisiz değil. (Believe me, he/she is not uninterested.)

Meaning: He/she is interested.

This double negation sentence has a positive meaning.

4. Access Full Turkish Grammar Content on TurkishClass101.com

Stay positive, but use Turkish negation words and sentences whenever you need to. 

Be sure to let us know in the comments if you still have any questions regarding negation in Turkish. We’ll be glad to help you out!

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How to Use Tenses in the Turkish Language

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Verbs are one of the most important elements of a sentence. But unfortunately, their infinitive forms don’t make much sense when used in a sentence; verbs must be conjugated to indicate the time of the action, as well as whether the action has been completed or is still happening. 

We make these distinctions by using tenses.

A Signpost with Signs for Now, Tomorrow, and Yesterday

Tenses in the Turkish language carry certain conjugation rules with them—and when conjugation enters the scene, things get interesting! This is because it brings with it pronouns and vowel harmony.

Don’t worry, though. You just need to study the rules and practice, practice, practice!

Before we look at each tense in detail, let’s go over the basics of conjugation.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Conjugation
  2. Present Tense
  3. Past Tense
  4. Future Tense
  5. Auxiliary Verbs
  6. How TurkishClass101 Can Speed Up Your Turkish Learning

1. Conjugation

There are certain factors that Turkish verbs conjugate for. Let’s see what they are:

I. Person / Subject

Verbs get different suffixes based on the person/subject used in the sentence. 

II. Number of Subjects

Verbs will also receive different suffixes based on whether the subject is singular or plural. 

III. Politeness Level

In Turkish, the plural “you” is used the same way it is in English, though we also use it as a polite, formal way of addressing someone. The plural “you” and polite “you” follow the same conjugation rules in Turkish. 

IV. Tense

Verbs are conjugated differently according to each tense.

    → This is only an overview. If you would like to study Turkish conjugation in greater depth, please see our article on Turkish Conjugation Rules.

Now, let’s look closer at that final point and go over all of the tenses in Turkish.

2. Present Tense

There are two subdivisions of the Turkish present tense: the present continuous and the simple present.

I. Present Continuous Tense

This tense is used for actions that are happening now. It’s used with the following time-related words and phrases:

  • Şimdi          –       “Now”
  • Şu anda     –       “At the moment”
  • Hemen       –       “Immediately”

Conjugation here is based on the tense and the personal pronoun. Vowel harmony also comes into play. 

Verb + (ı)yor / (i)yor / (u)yor / (ü)yor + suffix to indicate the personal pronoun

Tense conjugation with vowel harmony

The following suffixes are used for all verbs, whether they end with a consonant or a vowel. However, if the verb root ends in a vowel, the vowel must be dropped before the suffixes are added.

 a/ıe/io/uö/ü
Ben (I)-ıyorum-iyorum-uyorum-üyorum
Sen (You) [s]-ıyorsun-iyorsun-uyorsun-üyorsun
O (He/She/It)-ıyor-iyor-uyor-üyor
Biz (We)-ıyoruz-iyoruz-uyoruz-üyoruz
Siz (You) [p]-ıyorsunuz-iyorsunuz-uyorsunuz-üyorsunuz
Onlar (They)-ıyorlar-iyorlar-uyorlar-üyorlar

Here are some examples:

Ben açıyorum.
“I am opening.”
Ben seçiyorum.
“I am choosing.”
Ben okuyorum.
“I am reading.”
Ben bölüyorum.
“I am dividing.”
Sen açıyorsun.
“You are opening.”
Sen seçiyorsun.
“You are choosing.”
Sen okuyorsun.
“You are reading.”
Sen bölüyorsun.
“You are dividing.”
O açıyor.
“He/she/it is opening.”
O seçiyor.
“He/she/it is choosing.”
O okuyor.
“He/she/it is reading.”
O bölüyor.
“He/she/it is dividing.”
Biz açıyoruz.
“We are opening.”
Biz seçiyoruz.
“We are choosing.”
Biz okuyoruz. 
“We are reading.”
Biz bölüyoruz.
“We are dividing.”
Siz açıyorsunuz.
“You are opening.”
Siz seçiyorsunuz.
“You are choosing.”
Siz okuyorsunuz.
“You are reading.”
Siz bölüyorsunuz.
“You are dividing.”
Onlaç açıyorlar.
“They are opening.”
Onlar seçiyorlar.
“They are choosing.”
Onlar okuyorlar. 
“They are reading.”
Onlar bölüyorlar.
“They are dividing.”

II. Simple Present Tense (Aorist Tense)

The simple present (aorist) tense is used to indicate that an action happens in general or as a routine. It’s used with the following time words:

  • Her gün                 –       “Every day”
  • Her zaman/daima       –       “Always”
  • Sık sık/Sıklıkla      –       “Often”
  • Genellikle             –       “Usually”  

Now, here are the rules for simple present tense conjugation in Turkish.

1. The following suffixes are added to the verb root for verbs ending with a vowel:

 Last Vowel of the Verb Root
 a/ıExamplee/iExampleo/uExampleö/üExample
Ben (I)-rımBen tararım. 

“I comb.”
-rimBen yerim.

“I eat.”
-rumBen korurum.

“I protect.”
-rümBen yürürüm.

“I walk.”
Sen (You)
[s]
-rsınSen tararsın. 

“You comb.”
-rsinSen yersin.

“You eat.”
-rsunSen korursun.

“You protect.”
-rsünSen yürürsün.

“You walk.”
O
(He/She/It)
-rO tarar. 

“He/she combs.”
-rO yer.

“He/she/it eats.”
-rO korur.

“He/she/it protects.”
-rO yürür.

“He/she/it walks.”
Biz (We)-rız  Biz tararız. 

“We comb.”
-riz Biz yeriz.

“We eat.”
-ruz  Biz koruruz.

“We protect.”
-rüz Biz yürürüz.

“We walk.”
Siz (You) [p]-rsınız  Siz tararsınız. 

“You comb.”
-rsiniz  Siz yersiniz.

“You eat.”
-rsunuz  Siz korursunuz.
“You protect.”
-rsünüz  Siz  yürürsünüz.

“You walk.”
Onlar (They)-rlar  Onlar tararlar. 

“They comb.”
-rler  Onlar yerler.

“They eat.”
-rlar  Onlar korurlar.

“They protect.”
-rler  Onlar yürürler.

“They walk.”

2. Verbs that have one syllable and end with a consonant take the following suffixes:

 Last Vowel of the Verb Root
 a/ı/o/uExamplee/i/ö/üExample
Ben (I)-arımBen kaçarım.

“I escape.”
-erimBen içerim. 

“I drink.”
Sen (You) [s]-arsınSen kaçarsın.

“You escape.”
-ersinSen içersin. 

“You drink.”
O (He/She/It)-arO kaçar.

“He/she/it escapes.”
-erO içer. 

“He/she/it drinks.”
Biz (We)-arızBiz kaçarız.

“We escape.”
-erizBiz içeriz. 

“We drink.”
Siz (You) [p]-arsınızSiz kaçarsınız.

“You escape.”
-ersinizSiz içersiniz. 

“You drink.”
Onlar (They)-arlarOnlar kaçarlar.

“They escape.”
-erlerOnlar içerler. 

“They drink.”

Keep in mind that the following verbs do not follow this rule:

  • Almak                                –       “To take”
  • Bilmek                               –       “To know”
  • Bulmak                              –       “To find”
  • Durmak                             –       “To stop”
  • Gelmek                              –       “To come”
  • Görmek                              –       “To see”
  • Kalmak                              –       “To stay”
  • Olmak (helping verb)     –       “To be”
  • Ölmek                                –       “To die”
  • Sanmak                             –       “To suppose”
  • Vermek                             –       “To give”
  • Varmak                              –       “To arrive”

3. The following suffixes are added to the verb root of verbs that have more than one syllable and end with a consonant:

  Last Vowel of the Verb Root
 a/ıExamplee/iExampleo/uExampleö/üExample
Ben (I)-ırımBen bayılırım. 

“I faint.”
-irimBen getiririm.

“I bring.”
-urumBen  otururum.

“I sit.”
-ürümBen götürürüm.

“I take.”
Sen (You) [s]-ırsınSen bayılırsın.

“You faint.”
-irsinSen getirirsin.

“You bring.”
-ursunSen oturursun.

“You sit.”
-ürsünSen götürürsün.

“You take.”
O (He/She/It)-ırO bayılır.

“He/she/it faints.”
-irO getirir.

“He/she/it brings.”
-urO oturur.

“He/she/it sits.”
-ürO götürür.

“He/she/it takes.”
Biz (We)-ırız  Biz bayılırız.

“We faint.”
-iriz  Biz getiririz.

“We bring.”
-uruzBiz otururuz.

“We sit.”
-ürüzBiz götürürüz.

“We take.”
Siz (You) [p]-ırsınızSiz bayılırsınız.

“You faint.”
-irsinizSiz getirirsiniz.

“You bring.”
-ursunuzSiz oturursunuz.

“You sit.”
-ürsünüzSiz götürürsünüz.

“You take.”
Onlar (They)-ırlarOnlar bayılırlar.

“They faint.”
-irlerOnlar getirirler.

“They bring.”
-urlarOnlar otururlar.

“They sit.”
-ürlerOnlar götürürler.

“They take.”

Keep in mind that the helping verbs etmek and olmak do not follow this rule. Please refer to the “Auxiliary Verbs” section below for more information. 

3. Past Tense

I think you’ll find the Turkish past tense interesting. Why? Because there are two different types of past tense, one of which does not exist in most other languages.

A Woman in Deep Thought about Something

Let’s see what they are.

I. Definite Past Tense

In Turkish, the definite past tense is used to indicate that an action happened in the past. It’s used with the following time words:

  • Dün                    –       “Yesterday”
  • Geçen hafta         –       “Last week”
  • 3 gün once           –       “3 days ago”

Conjugating the definite past tense is a little more complicated than what we’ve seen so far. You need to know the last vowel and the last letter of the verb in order to use the correct rule. 

 Last Vowel of the Verb Root 
 a/ıe/io/uö/ü
PERSONIf the very last letter of the verb root is one of these letters: “ç/f/h/k/s/ş/t/p”If the very last letter of the verb root is any other consonantIf the very last letter of the verb root is one of these letters: “ç/f/h/k/s/ş/t/p”If the very last letter of the verb root is any other consonantIf the very last letter of the verb root is one of these letters: “ç/f/h/k/s/ş/t/p”If the very last letter of the verb root is any other consonantIf the very last letter of the verb root is one of these letters: “ç/f/h/k/s/ş/t/p”If the very last letter of the verb root is any other consonant
Ben (ı)-tım-dım-tim-dim-tum-dum-tüm-düm
Sen (You) [s]-tın-dın-tin-din-tun-dun-tün-dün
O (He/she/it)  -tı-dı    -ti-di  -tu-du-tü-dü
Biz (We)-tık-dık-tik-dik-tuk-duk-tük-dük
Siz (You) [p]-tınız-dınız-tiniz-diniz-tunuz-dunuz-tünüz-dünüz
Onlar (They)-tılar-dılar-tiler-diler-tular-dular-tüler-düler

Here are a few examples to help you understand how the Turkish definite past tense is conjugated:

Ben kalktım.
“I got up.”
Ben erteledim.
“I postponed.”
Ben yoruldum.
“I got tired.”
Ben öptüm.
“I kissed.”
Sen kalktın.
“You got up.”
Sen erteledin.
“You postponed.”
Sen yoruldun.
“You got tired.”
Sen öptün.
“You kissed.”
O kalk.
“He/she/it got up.”
O erteledi.
“He/she/it postponed.”
O yoruldu.
“He/she/it got tired.”
O öp.
“He/she/it kissed.”
Biz kalktık.
“We got up.”
Biz erteledik.
“We postponed.”
Biz yorulduk.
“We got tired.”
Biz öptük.
“We kissed.”
Siz kalktınız.
“You got up.”
Siz ertelediniz.
“You postponed.”
Siz yoruldunuz.
“You got tired.”
Siz öptünüz.
“You kissed.”
Onlar kalktılar.
“They got up.”
Onlar ertelediler.
“They postponed.”
Onlar yoruldular.
“They got tired.”
Onlar öptüler.
“They kissed.”

 

II. Reported Past Tense

I know you’re curious to know what this is! The reported past tense in Turkish is used in the following cases:

  • When the speaker is explaining something he/she has heard but not witnessed:

    Babam telefonumu bulmuş.           –       “My father has found my phone.”
    (My father told me he found it, but I didn’t actually see him find it.)

  • When the speaker is telling a story:

    Küçük bir çocuk varmış.                   –       “There was a young child.”
    (I haven’t seen the child; it’s just a character in a story.)

  • When the speaker is telling someone that he/she has done something without noticing it:

    Telefonumu sessize almışım.         –       “I muted my phone.”
    (I didn’t realize I muted it.)

    Bu filmi daha önce seyretmişim.    – “I have seen this movie before.”
    (I’ve started watching a movie, but realize that I’ve seen it before and forgot.)

  • When the speaker is telling someone about their dream: 

    Rüyamda çok gençmişim.               –       “I was very young in my dream.”
    (It’s like storytelling; you’re telling someone about your dream, which is not reality.)

Someone Sound Asleep and Dreaming
  • When the speaker is imagining something and talking about it with someone:

    Mesela, ben doktormuşum.         –       “For example, I was a doctor.”
    (This is again not reality; you’re imagining that you were a doctor.)

Now that you know when to use this tense, let’s see how it’s conjugated.

 
Last Vowel of the Verb Root
 a/ıExamplee/iExampleo/uExampleö/üExample
Ben (I)-mışımBen atmışım. 

“I threw.”
-imBen seçmişim.

“I chose.”
-um Ben korumuşum.

“I protected.”
ümBen gülmüşüm.


“I laughed.”
Sen (You) [s]-mışsınSen atmışsın. 

“You threw.”
-sinSen seçmişsin.


“You chose.”
-sunSen korumuşsun.


“You protected.”
sün Sen gülmüşsün.


“You laughed.”
O (He/She/It)-mışO atmış. 

“He/she threw.”
miş O seçmiş.

“He/she/it chose.”
muş O korumuş.

“He/she/it protected.”
müş O gülmüş.

“He/she/it laughed.”
Biz (We)-mışızBiz atmışız. 

“We threw.”
-izBiz seçmişiz.

“We chose.”
-uzBiz korumuşuz.

“We protected.”
üz Biz gülmüşüz.

“We laughed.”
Siz (You) [p]-mışsınızSiz atmışsınız. 

“You threw.”
-sinizSiz seçmişsiniz.

“You chose.”
sunuzSiz korumuşsunuz.

“You protected.”
sünüzSiz gülmüşsünüz.

“You laughed.”
Onlar (They)-mışlarOnlar atmışlar. 

“They threw.”
-lerOnlar seçmişler.

“They chose.”
-larOnlar korumuşlar.

“They protected.”
-lerOnlar gülmüşler.

“They laughed.”

4. Future Tense

This tense is used for actions that will happen in the future. It’s used with the following time words:

  • Yarın                      –       “Tomorrow”
  • Gelecek hafta       –       “Next week”
  • Gelecek Pazartesi    –       “Next Monday”

 Verbs Ending with a Consonant Verbs Ending with a Vowel 
 a/ı/o/ue/i/ö/üa/ı/o/ue/i/ö/ü
Ben (I)-acağım-eceğim-[y]acağım-[y]eceğim
Sen (You) [s]-acaksın-eceksin-[y]acaksın-[y]eceksin
O (He/She/It)-acak-ecek-[y]acak-[y]ecek
Biz (We)-acağız-eceğiz-[y]acağız-[y]eceğiz
Siz (You) [p]-acaksınız-eceksiniz-[y]acaksınız-[y]eceksiniz
Onlar (They)-acaklar-ecekler-[y]acaklar-[y]ecekler

There are two verbs that do not follow these rules:

  • Demek                   –       “To say” / “To tell”
  • Yemek                 –       “To eat”

When conjugating these verbs for the future tense, the letter “e” changes to “i,” and then the suffixes outlined above are added. For example:

  • Ben yiyeceğim.     –       “I will eat.”
  • Sen diyeceksin.   –       “You will tell.”

A Woman about to Eat Skewered Meat

She’s going to eat.

Here are a few examples of how the Turkish future tense is used:

Ben kalacağım.
“I will stay.”
Ben seçeceğim.
“I will choose.”
Ben uyuyacağım.
“I will sleep.”
Ben eleyeceğim.
“I will eliminate.”
Sen kalacaksın.
“You will stay.”
Sen seçeceksin.
“You will choose.”
Sen uyuyacaksın.
“You will sleep.”
Sen eleyeceksin.
“You will eliminate.” 
O kalacak.
“He/she/it will stay.”
O seçecek.
“He/she/it will choose.”
O uyuyacak.
“He/she/it will sleep.”
O eleyecek.
“He/she/it will eliminate.” 
Biz kalacağız. 
“We will stay.”
Biz seçeceğiz.
“We will choose.”
Biz uyuyacağız.
“We will sleep.”
Biz eleyeceğiz.
“We will eliminate.” 
Siz kalacaksınız.
“You will stay.”
Siz seçeceksiniz.
“You will choose.”
Siz uyuyacaksınız.
“You will sleep.”
Siz eleyeceksiniz.
“You will eliminate.” 
Onlar kalacaklar.
“They will stay.”
Onlar seçecekler.
“They will choose.”
Onlar uyuyacaklar.
“They will sleep.”
Onlar eleyecekler.
“They will eliminate.” 

5. Auxiliary Verbs

The main auxiliary verbs in Turkish (also known as helping verbs) are:

Etmek                               –       “To do” / “To make” / “To perform”     
Olmak                              –       “To become” / “To happen” / “To occur”
Yapmak                            –       “To do” / “To make”

Here are some examples of how they’re used:

Teşekkür etmek                –       “Thank you”
Pişman olmak                   –       “To regret”
Katkı yapmak                    –       “To contribute”

A Card in Front of a Present that Says Thank You!!

Thank you! / Teşekkür ederim!

Now, let’s see how they’re conjugated:

PronounPresent ContinuousSimple PresentDefinite PastReported PastFuture
Ben (I)EdiyorumEderimEttimEtmişimEdeceğim
Sen (You) [s]EdiyorsunEdersinEttinEtmişsinEdeceksin
O (He/She/It)EdiyorEderEttiEtmişEdecek
Biz (We)EdiyoruzEderizEttikEtmişizEdeceğiz
Siz (You) [p]EdiyorsunuzEdersinizEttinizEtmişsinizEdeceksiniz
Onlar (They)EdiyorlarEderlerEttilerEtmişlerEdecekler
Ben (I)OluyorumOlurumOldumOlmuşumOlacağım
Sen (You) [s]OluyorsunOlursunOldunOlmuşsunOlacaksın
O (He/She/It)OluyorOlurOlduOlmuşOlacak
Biz (We)OluyoruzOluruzOldukOlmuşuzOlacağız
Siz (You) [p]OluyorsunuzOlursunuzOldunuzOlmuşsunuzOlacaksınız
Onlar (They)OluyorlarOlurlarOldularOlmuşlarOlacaklar
Ben (I)YapıyorumYaparımYaptımYapmışımYapacağım
Sen (You) [s]YapıyorsunYaparsınYaptınYapmışsınYapacaksın
O (He/She/It)YapıyorYaparYaptıYapmışYapacak
Biz (We)YapıyoruzYaparızYaptıkYapmışızYapacağız
Siz (You) [p]YapıyorsunuzYaparsınızYaptınızYapmışsınızYapacaksınız
Onlar (They)YapıyorlarYaparlarYaptılarYapmışlarYapacaklar

6. How TurkishClass101 Can Speed Up Your Turkish Learning

By now, you should be much more familiar with the different Turkish-language tenses, how to form them, and when to use each one. How confident do you feel so far? 

If you would like to reinforce what you’ve learned today, then create your free lifetime account with TurkishClass101! We provide numerous Turkish lessons for learners at every level, in both audio and video formats. In addition, we offer our learners a variety of free resources, including an online Turkish-English dictionary for quick reference and themed vocabulary lists

Premium PLUS members also get access to our MyTeacher service, which allows you to learn and practice with your own private tutor. 

Finally, make sure you download our free app so you can learn Turkish anywhere, anytime. 

Happy learning!

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How Fast Can You Learn Turkish?

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Learning a new language is a process that requires time and effort; it can’t be completed overnight. 

As an aspiring Turkish learner, you’re likely wondering at this point: Okay, so how long does it take to learn Turkish? 

I can understand why you want to know the length of your learning journey in advance. This information can help you decide whether to take the plunge or not, make plans, and get prepared for your upcoming studies. 

But you know what? There’s no formula where you can plug in a few variables and calculate the time right away! It’s not that simple. 

However, there are a few factors that can be taken into consideration.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Factors That Affect Your Language Learning Progress
  2. Proficiency Levels
  3. Useful Tools to Help You Learn Turkish Effectively
  4. Learn Turkish Online with TurkishClass101!
  5. Utilize TurkishClass101 to Learn Turkish the Easy Way!

Factors That Affect Your Language Learning Progress

A number of factors are involved in determining how long it takes to learn Turkish. Following is a breakdown of each one and how it will affect your ability to learn the Turkish language. 

Your Reason for Learning 

The first thing you need to do is determine your reason for learning Turkish. 

Will you use it for managing a business relationship or for social conversations? Will you be writing academic papers in Turkish or do you need it to search for information on the internet? Or maybe you need it because you’ll be traveling or studying in Turkey? 

Your objective will determine the proficiency level you need to achieve, which in turn will tell you how long you’ll need to study. 

In addition, your goal can clue you in on how to use your time. If there’s some urgency to attain a certain level of Turkish, you have to plan accordingly and be more systematic. If there’s no urgency, you can extend your studies over a longer period of time. 

Your Learning Environment

What are your learning methods? What resource(s) are you using? Are you attending a college course, seeing a private tutor, or learning online? And how intensive are your courses? 

These are all factors that can speed up or slow down your progress! 

Your Native Language

If your native language is structured very differently from Turkish in terms of alphabet/script, grammar, phonology, syntax, etc., it will take longer for you to learn Turkish. 

The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) of the United States has categorized all world languages into four groups, according to their linguistic and/or cultural differences from English. Category I languages are the easiest for English speakers to pick up, while Category IV languages are the most difficult. Turkish is considered a Category III language. To give you an idea, a few other languages in this category include: 

  • Bulgarian
  • Czech
  • Finnish
  • Greek
  • Hebrew
  • Hungarian
  • Polish
  • Russian
  • Tagalog

Now, how long does it take to learn the Turkish language based on the estimations of the FSI? They’ve estimated that it takes 44 weeks or 1100 hours to reach a professional working level in Category III languages.

Your Previous Language Learning Experience

If you have prior language learning experience or were raised bilingual, it will take you less time to learn a new language. This is because you’ve been down that road before. You already know the best methods for studying, memorizing vocabulary, and practicing your skills, so you’ll find the process much easier than a monolingual would. 

Your Capability and Talent

I think we have to accept that some people are more talented at learning new languages than others. Those who have natural ability or are inclined to learn new languages are definitely at an advantage.

A Speedometer Reading 0 MPH

Learning pace

Proficiency Levels

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR or CEFRL) is the international standard for determining one’s proficiency level in a language. It has six levels: A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, and C2.

Let’s take a look at these levels and go over what you can accomplish in Turkish at each stage.

Beginner Level

The beginner stage encompasses levels A1 and A2 of the CEFR scale, and it’s also referred to as the “Basic User” level. 

Once you complete the beginner level:

  • You can carry out daily conversations and perform tasks such as introducing yourself, shopping, asking and answering simple questions, and meeting your urgent requirements.
  • You will know some basic nouns, adjectives, and verbs.

To get a better idea of what you’ll be learning as you approach this level, check out the beginner lesson 5 Sentence Patterns for Beginners on TurkishClass101.com. 

100-120 hours of study will be required to reach this level. Flashcards will be useful at this stage.

You can take the A1 or A2 TOMER test at Istanbul University or Anadolu University in order to prove your proficiency. 

Intermediate Level

CEFR refers to this stage as “Independent User,” which consists of the B1 and B2 levels. 

Once you complete the intermediate level:

  • You can (to a certain degree) speak and understand Turkish, read newspapers and articles in Turkish, and even think in Turkish.
  • You will know even more vocabulary, including pronouns, adverbs, and conjunction words.
  • You will also be familiar with some of the tenses used in Turkish. 

Are you curious what intermediate-level lessons will look like? Then head over to our lesson 25 Must-Know Intermediate Phrases!

450-490 hours will be required to get to this level. Talking with native speakers, reading Turkish content, and watching Turkish television shows will be very helpful in getting to this stage.

You can test for the B1 or B2 level through TOMER at Istanbul University or Anadolu University. You can also get B2-level certification if you take and pass the TYS (Türkçe Yeterlik Sınavı) / TPE (Turkish Proficiency Exam).

A Certificate of Achievement Paper

Advanced Level

CEFR refers to this stage as “Proficient User” and it consists of the C1 and C2 levels. 

Once you complete the advanced level:

  • You can carry out deeper conversations about culture, science, art, literature, and politics. 
  • You can engage in more complex situations, such as trade or business-related exchanges. 

To get an idea of what you’re dealing with at this point in your learning journey, have a look at our lesson 25 Must-Know Advanced Phrases

1000-1100 hours will be required to get to this level. In addition to watching, listening to, and reading Turkish content, being able to live or study in Turkey for a while will help you attain this level of fluency much faster.

You can get C1 and C2 certification if you take and pass the TYS (Türkçe Yeterlik Sınavı) / TPE (Turkish Proficiency Exam).

A Woman Thinking in Front of a Blackboard with Thought Bubbles Drawn in Chalk

Useful Tools to Help You Learn Turkish Effectively

Now that you have a better idea of how long it takes to learn the Turkish language, you can start preparing yourself accordingly. To give you a headstart, here are a few tips on how to study Turkish for the best results. 

  • Schools and private lessons. 

    These are two of the best and quickest ways to learn Turkish. However, both are quite expensive and offer little (if any) flexibility timewise.
  • Learning on your own

    If traditional classes are not a practical option for you, you might be wondering how to learn Turkish by yourself. While the idea may seem daunting, there are plenty of effective ways to learn from home!

    For example, you can learn Turkish online (oftentimes, for free). TurkishClass101 is a great resource you can use, but we’ll talk more about us later. 😉
  • Real-life application. 

    Whichever path you take, the most important thing is to put together and apply everything you’ve learned. You can do this by…

    …reading Turkish blogs, articles, books, and newspapers.
    …listening to Turkish radio channels or podcasts.
    …watching TV shows, videos, and movies in Turkish.
    speakers

    Of course, you should also consider moving to Turkey and living there for a while. This will help you improve in all aspects of your learning!
A Man Reading at a Cafe

Just a reminder: Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Be brave and try to use the things you’ve learned.

Learn Turkish Online with TurkishClass101!

Would you like to learn Turkish online in a fun and effective way? If yes, all you need to do is visit TurkishClass101.com and create your free lifetime account. 

So, what great resources do we offer our learners? How can we benefit your studies? 

A Single Resource for All

TurkishClass101.com provides lessons and other learning materials that cover all aspects of the Turkish language, for learners at every level. You can find tons of written, audio, and video materials covering Turkish grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation, as well as exercises to improve your listening, writing, and speaking skills. We also have plenty of lessons about Turkish culture, so you can get the full experience! 

Free Resources

Many of the resources we offer are free, and they’re a great place to start if you need to pick up the Turkish-language basics. Here are just a few examples of what you can expect from our free content: 

We also have numerous vocabulary lists, a Word of the Day feature, and a Turkish dictionary to help you build up your vocabulary base! 

Premium and Premium PLUS Services

Upgrading to a Premium account will give you access to even more content not accessible with a basic account. While this upgrade isn’t necessary to learn the language or use our site, it will help you learn more efficiently with a broader range of resources. 

To speed up your progress and further enhance your learning, you can upgrade to Premium PLUS. The most notable feature of this subscription is our MyTeacher service, which allows you to study and practice with a private teacher. 

This service will also give you: 

  • One-on-one interaction with your personal teacher
  • Guidance & ongoing assessment
  • Weekly assignments and badges for the assignments you complete
  • Constructive feedback

Learn On the Go 

Location is no longer a roadblock in your Turkish studies! With today’s technology, you can continue learning wherever you are. Download the free InnovativeLanguage101 app and use it anywhere, anytime.

Mobile App

Utilize TurkishClass101 to Learn Turkish the Easy Way!

In this article, we answered the question: How fast can you learn Turkish? We also guided you concerning the best ways to learn Turkish both online and offline, so that you can make the most of your study time. 

Don’t lose any more time—start utilizing all of the resources TurkishClass101.com has to offer. 

Already a member? Feel free to leave us feedback on your experiences so we can continue to get better, and make your learning journey even more enjoyable. 

Before you go: How likely are you to start learning Turkish after reading this article? Is there anything still holding you back? Let us know in the comments, and we’ll do our best to help!

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The Top 30 Inspirational and Motivational Turkish Proverbs

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I believe proverbs are an important part of any culture. Though we don’t know under what circumstances or by whom they were put forward, they have been passed down from one generation of people to another. They serve to teach us life lessons while showing us different points of view. 

As a learner of the Turkish language, you’ll greatly benefit from studying Turkish proverbs and sayings. Doing so will expand your vocabulary, help you better understand the inner workings of the language, and provide you with insight into the core values and traditions of Turkish culture

In this article, you’ll learn thirty inspirational and motivational Turkish proverbs with their English translations. We’ve categorized them by topic, so feel free to skim through and find a topic or theme that interests you!

    → By the way, to spice up your Turkish conversations even more, you may want to brush up on these Essential Idioms That Will Make You Sound Like a Native Speaker!

      Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
      1. Turkish Proverbs About Time
      2. Turkish Proverbs About Hope
      3. Turkish Proverbs About Friendship
      4. Turkish Proverbs About Happiness
      5. Turkish Proverbs About Trust
      6. Turkish Proverbs About Money
      7. Turkish Proverbs About Wisdom
      8. Miscellaneous Proverbs
      9. Learn More with TurkishClass101!

      1. Turkish Proverbs About Time

      Time is many things to us. It’s full of opportunity, it’s always running out, there’s never quite enough of it, and we’re always looking for the best ways to spend the time we do have. With this in mind, here are some Turkish proverbs about time: 

        1TurkishZaman her şeyin ilacıdır.
      LiterallyTime is the medicine of everything.
      Equivalent in EnglishTime is the best medicine.
      As time passes, all the troubles we experience are forgotten or the sorrow we feel decreases.

      Example:

      Üzülme, bugünler de geçecek; zaman her şeyin ilacıdır.

      “Don’t worry, these days will be over, too; time is the best medicine.”

        2TurkishSakla samanı, gelir zamanı.
      LiterallySave the hay, its time will come.
      Equivalent in EnglishKeep a thing seven years and you’ll find a use for it.
      If you hold onto something you have for long enough, it will eventually become useful.

      Example:

      İyi ki kızımın bebek arabasını saklamışım, şimdi senin çok işine yarayacak. Eee, sakla samanı gelir zamanı.

      “Fortunately, I saved my daughter’s stroller. It will be very useful for you now. See, keep a thing for seven years and you’ll find a use for it.”  

        3TurkishVakit nakittir.
      LiterallyTime is cash.
      Equivalent in EnglishTime is money.
      This proverb emphasizes that time is a valuable resource.

      Example:

      Bir an önce işe gitmeliyim. Eee, ne de olsa vakit nakittir.

      “I have to go to work as soon as possible. Well, after all, time is money.”  

        4TurkishBugünün işini yarına bırakma.
      LiterallyDon’t leave today’s work for tomorrow.
      Equivalent in EnglishNever put off till tomorrow what you can do today.
      This one emphasizes that one should not delay doing something that can be done today. 

      Example:

      Ödevimi yarın yaparım deyince babam bugünün işini yarına bırakma dedi.

      “When I said I would do my homework tomorrow, my father said ‘Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.’ “

        5TurkishSona kalan dona kalır.
      LiterallyThe one who stays the last, is left for the frost.
      Equivalent in EnglishThe devil takes the hindmost.
      The people who lag behind will either lose or not have any benefits.

      Example:

      Ali amca çocuklara şeker veriyor, koşun; sona kalan dona kalır.

      “Uncle Ali is giving candy to the children, run; the devil takes the hindmost.”

        6TurkishErken kalkan yol alır.
      LiterallyThe one who gets up early proceeds.
      Equivalent in EnglishThe early bird catches the worm.
      This proverb advises that if someone does something immediately (or before anyone else), he/she will have an advantage.

      Example:

      Daha 5 saatlik yolumuz var, artık yola çıksak iyi olur. Ne de olsa, erken kalkan yol alır.

      “We have five more hours to go, we’d better get going. After all, the early bird catches the worm.”

      A Businessman Checking His Watch

      2. Turkish Proverbs About Hope

      We could all use some uplifting words now and then, especially when we’re at our lowest point. Whether you or a loved one needs some encouragement, these two Turkish proverbs about hope will deliver! 

        7TurkishÇıkmadık candan umut kesilmez.
      LiterallyIf the person didn’t die, there is still hope.
      Equivalent in EnglishWhile there’s life, there’s hope.
      If something didn’t fail completely, there is still a chance to save it.

      Example:

      Üzülme, son aday henüz açıklanmadı. Çıkmadın candan umut kesilmez.

      “Don’t worry, the last candidate has not been announced yet. While there’s life, there’s hope.”

        8TurkishGün doğmadan neler doğar.
      LiterallyBefore the sun rises, a lot of things rise.
      Equivalent in EnglishTomorrow is another day.
      A person should never lose hope, because nobody knows what’s going to happen tomorrow.

      Example:

      Öyle hemen umudunu kaybetme. Gün doğmadan neler doğar.

      “Don’t lose your hope. Tomorrow is another day.”

      3. Turkish Proverbs About Friendship

      A true friendship is one of the most precious things a person can experience—and a fake or weak friendship can be one of the worst things! The following Turkish proverbs about friendship offer advice on how to choose friends wisely and how to be a good friend yourself. 

        9TurkishBana arkadaşını söyle sana kim olduğunu söyleyeyim.
      LiterallyTell me who your friend is, I will tell you who you are.
      Equivalent in EnglishTell me who you go with, and I’ll tell you who you are.
      This proverb means that a person’s friends are a reflection of who he/she is.

      Example:

      John o gruba girdiğinden beri her gün kavga ediyor. Eee, ne demişler ‘Bana arkadaşını söyle sana kim olduğunu söyleyeyim.’

      “Since John got into that group, he’s been fighting every day. Well, they say, ‘Tell me who you go with, and I’ll tell you who you are.’ ”  

        10TurkishDost kara günde belli olur.
      LiterallyA real friend is understood on a bad day.
      Equivalent in EnglishA friend in need is a friend indeed.
      A person who stays by your side during difficult times is someone you can really rely on.

      Example:

      İflas ettiğinden beri Mary dışında hiçbir arkadaşı yanında değil.  Eee, dost kara günde belli olur.

      “Since she went bankrupt, none of her friends are with her except for Mary. Well, a friend in need is a friend indeed.”

      Three Old Ladies and an Old Man Laughing While Playing Cards

        11TurkishDost acı söyler.
      LiterallyReal friend talks bitter.
      A real friend always tells the truth—including when their friend is wrong—even if it hurts.

      Example:

      Kusura bakma bu olayda sen hatalısın; dost acı söyler.

      “Sorry, in this case you are wrong; real friend talks bitter.”

      4. Turkish Proverbs About Happiness

      We all desire happiness, but there are days when it seems impossible to find. Below are a couple of Turkish proverbs about happiness that provide insight on the topic. 

        12TurkishKutlu gün doğuşundan bellidir.
      LiterallyA happy day is known from the way of the sunrise.
      The affairs that will lead to happy and good results manifest themselves from the beginning.

      Example:

      Başından beri her şey o kadar iyi gitti ki, işi senin alacağını biliyordum. Büyüklerin dediği gibi: ‘Kutlu gün doğuşundan bellidir.’

      “Everything went so well from the start that I knew you would get the job. As the elderly say: ‘A happy day is known from the way of the sunrise.’ “

        13TurkishUlu ağacın gürültüsü dal ile, mutlu evin yakışığı döl ile.
      LiterallyThe noise of the great tree with the twig, the light of the happy house with the offspring.
      Just as a tree grows by branching, the happiness of a family is reinforced by the children it raises.

      Example:

      Onlar çok kalabalık bir aile. Eee, ne de olsa Ulu ağacın gürültüsü dal ile, mutlu evin yakışığı döl ile.

      “They are a very crowded family. Well, after all, the noise of the great tree with the twig, the light of the happy house with the offspring.”

      A Father and His Two Children in a Field

      5. Turkish Proverbs About Trust

      Knowing who (or what) to trust is an important skill to have, but it can also be one of the most difficult things to determine. To give you a bit of advice on the matter, here are a couple of Turkish proverbs about trust. 

        14TurkishGüvenme varlığa, düşersin darlığa.
      LiterallyDon’t trust wealth, you would fall into poverty.
      People should not be extravagant with their spending if they have a lot of money. If they don’t manage their money properly, they can find themselves in poverty. 

      Example:

      Paranı çarçur etme; ne derler ‘Güvenme varlığa, düşersin darlığa.’

      “Don’t waste your money; they say, ‘Don’t trust wealth, you would fall into poverty.’ “

        15TurkishGüvenme dostuna, saman doldurur postuna.
      LiterallyDo not trust your friend, he/she will fill your skin with hay.
      This proverb implies that before you trust someone, you should test him/her. If you trust someone blindly, he/she might deceive you.


      Example:
      Sen herkese çok güveniyorsun. Şu atasözünü hiç duymadın mı? ‘Güvenme dostuna, saman doldurur postuna.’

      “You trust everyone very much. Have you ever heard of this proverb? ‘Do not trust your friend, he/she will fill your skin with hay.’ “

      6. Turkish Proverbs About Money

      As we all know, every language has plenty of quotes and proverbs about money and how to use it wisely. Below are some famous Turkish proverbs about money.

        16TurkishParayı veren düdüğü çalar.
      LiterallyThe one who gives the money blows the whistle.
      Equivalent in EnglishHe who pays the piper calls the tune.
      The one who pays for something is the one who has a say in related matters.

      Example:

      Sen de ona para verseydin, sana da dondurma getirirdi; parayı veren düdüğü çalar.

      “If you had given him money, he would have brought you ice cream, too; who pays the piper calls the tune.”  

        17TurkishPara parayı çeker.
      LiterallyMoney draws money.
      Equivalent in EnglishThem as has, gits.
      If someone has money, he/she can make more money with it since money brings more advantages and opportunities.

      Example:

      Jane lotoyu tutturmuş. Eee para parayı çeker.

      “Jane has won the lottery. Well, them as has, gits.” 

        18TurkishEkmek aslanın ağzında.
      LiterallyBread is in the mouth of the lion.
      Equivalent in EnglishMoney doesn’t grow on trees.
      This proverb means that it’s not easy to earn money; it requires a lot of effort.

      Example:

      Paranı çarçur etmemelisin. Malum, ekmek aslanın ağzında.

      “You shouldn’t waste your money. As you know, bread is in the mouth of the lion.”

        19TurkishPara ile imanın kimde olduğu bilinmez.
      LiterallyIt’s not known who has money or faith.
      Faith is something within the heart of a person, so we don’t know who really has faith in God. Likewise, we really don’t know how much money a person has.

      Example:

      Joe amcanın 10 milyon dolar miras bırakmasına çok şaşırdım. Para ile imanın kimde olduğu bilinmez.

      “I was surprised that Uncle Joe left a legacy of ten million dollars. It’s not known who has money or faith.” 

        20TurkishPara insana dil, elbise insana yol öğretir.
      LiterallyMoney teaches man a language, clothes teach the way.
      Your wealth and position determine your place in society, and can give you more or less prestige than others.

      Example:

      O adamı lotoyu kazanana dek hiç kimse sevmezdi. Şimdi etrafında bir sürü insan var. Eee, para insana dil, elbise insana yol öğretir.

      “Nobody liked that man until he won the lottery. Now there are a lot of people around him. Well, money teaches man a language, clothes teach the way.”

      Several Hundred Dollar Bills

      7. Turkish Proverbs About Wisdom

      Wisdom is another concept that people in every culture talk a lot about. Below are a few great Turkish proverbs that offer general words of wisdom for many of life’s circumstances. 

        21TurkishAkıl akıldan üstündür.
      LiterallyOne mind is better than another one.
      Equivalent in EnglishTwo heads are better than one.
      We can’t know it all. It’s good to ask for other people’s opinions, because they may have better ideas than we do. 

      Example:

      Sana da sorayım. Ne de olsa akıl akıldan üstündür. Sence ona nasıl davranmalıyım? 

      “Let me ask you as well. After all, two heads are better than one. How do you think I should treat him/her?”

        22TurkishAkıl yaşta değil baştadır.
      LiterallyWisdom isn’t at age, it’s on the head.
      Equivalent in EnglishWisdom doesn’t come with age.
      A person doesn’t need to be old in order to think wisely, or to realize what’s going on. Using one’s brain and learning from experience leads to wisdom. Therefore, a person is not wise just because they’re old; a person who is young may also be wise.

      Example:

      Çok genç ve tecrübesiz olmasına rağmen durumu iyi idare etti. Ne de olsa, akıl yaşta değil baştadır. 

      “Although he is very young and inexperienced, he managed the situation well. After all, wisdom doesn’t come with age.”

        23TurkishAkla gelmeyen başa gelir.
      LiterallyThe one that doesn’t come to mind, happens.
      Equivalent in EnglishThe unexpected always happens.
      We shouldn’t forget that things can happen, even if we don’t expect or foresee them.

      Example:

      Kapının önünde zili tamir ediyordum. Kapı açık diye anahtarımı almadım. Bir rüzgar esti, kapı kapandı. Akla gelmeyen başa geliyor.

       “I was fixing the bell in front of the door. I didn’t get my key because the door was open. The wind blew, the door got closed. The unexpected always happens.”

      Image of a Human Brain with Strings of Light, Symbolizing Neural Connections

        24TurkishAkıllı düşmandan değil; salak dosttan kork.
      LiterallyBe afraid of a stupid friend, not of a smart enemy.
      People who act thoughtlessly, do not see the truth, and cannot see the consequences of the words they say, may unknowingly harm their friends—even if they have good intentions. On the other hand, we can anticipate and predict what a smart enemy can do and take precautions. 

      Example:

      En iyi arkadaşım patavatsızca konuşup, beni zor durumda bıraktı. Akıllı düşmandan değil; salak dosttan kork.

      “My friend talked thoughtlessly and put me in a difficult situation. Be afraid of a stupid friend, not of a smart enemy.”  

        25TurkishCahile söz anlatmak, deveye hendek atlatmaktan güçtür.
      LiterallyIt is more difficult to speak to an ignorant person than to get a camel over a ditch.
      Equivalent in EnglishLike getting blood from a turnip.
      This proverb means that it’s impossible to explain something to an ignorant person.

      Example:

      Hepimiz en az üç kez anlattık ama anlamadı. Cahile söz anlatmak, deveye hendek atlatmaktan güç.

      “All of us told him at least three times, but he didn’t understand. It’s like getting blood from a turnip.”

      8. Miscellaneous Proverbs

      To wrap up, let’s look at some of the best Turkish proverbs on a variety of other concepts! 

        26TurkishOlacakla öleceğe çare yoktur.
      LiterallyThere is no cure for the things that will happen or the person that will die.
      Equivalent in EnglishWhatever will be, will be.
      We can’t control everything. Whatever is meant or predetermined to take place will take place.

      Example:

      O kadar uğraştım ama yine de olmadı. Anladım ki olacakla öleceğe çare yok.

      “I tried so hard, but it still didn’t happen. I realized that whatever will be, will be.” 

        27TurkishLafla peynir gemisi yürümez.
      LiterallyThe cheese ship doesn’t move with words.
      Equivalent in EnglishActions speak louder than words.
      This one means that nothing happens when we only talk about it; action is needed. In other words, what you do is more important than what you say.

      Example:

      O hep konuşuyor, hiçbir şey yaptığı yok ama lafla da peynir gemisi yürümez. 

      “He/she always talks, he/she does nothing, but actions speak louder than words.” 

        28TurkishKomşunun tavuğu komşuya kaz görünür.
      LiterallyThe neighbor’s chicken seems like a goose to the neighbor.
      Equivalent in EnglishThe grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.
      This proverb means that what other people have always seems better than what we have.

      Example:

      Sally Jen’in elbisesini çok beğendi. Halbuki aynısı onda da var. Komşunun tavuğu komşuya kaz görünür.

      “Sally liked Jen’s dress very much. However, she has the same dress. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.”  

        29TurkishSütten ağzı yanan yoğurdu üfleyerek yer.
      LiterallyThe one who is burnt by the milk, eats yogurt by blowing on it.
      Equivalent in EnglishOnce burnt, twice shy.
      If someone has had an unpleasant experience in the past, they become more cautious.

      Example:

      O hemen David’in evlenme teklifini kabul etmek istemiyor. Eee, sütten ağzı yanan yoğurdu üfleyerek yer.

      “He doesn’t want to accept David’s marriage proposal right away. Well, once burnt, twice shy.” 

        30TurkishAltın pas tutmaz.
      LiterallyGold doesn’t get rusted.
      Nobody can dishonor someone who is honorable and dignified.

      Example:

      O ne derse desin, herkes beni biliyor. Altın pas tutmaz.

      “No matter what he/she says, everyone knows me. Gold does not get rusted.”  

      9. Learn More with TurkishClass101!

      In this article, we went over a bunch of Turkish proverbs with their English translations. Now you can impress your Turkish friends, colleagues, or even your boss by using these popular Turkish proverbs at the right moment. 

      Would you like to continue your Turkish studies in the fastest, easiest, and most fun way possible? Then bookmark TurkishClass101.com! We provide numerous video and audio lessons, tons of vocabulary lists, and a number of free resources (such as this Turkish dictionary), all designed to help you get a better grasp of the language. We also provide the MyTeacher service for Premium PLUS members; this service allows you to work and practice one-on-one with your own personal language tutor. 

      Interested? You can download the app for free and use it wherever you are.

      Happy learning! 

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A Quick Turkish Grammar Guide

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Let me look into my magic crystal ball and tell you what I see… You’re interested in learning Turkish or have just started working on it. You’re curious to know what Turkish grammar looks like and whether it’s similar to English grammar. And actually, you’re dying to learn what kind of an adventure you’re getting yourself into.

Of course, I’m not a fortune teller. But if I guessed correctly, you’re at the right address. This page serves as an overview of Turkish, an essential grammar guide, and a quick reference for those who want to brush up on specific grammar topics.

Our quick guide will show you the similarities and dissimilarities between Turkish and English as well as the basic structure of Turkish grammar, from vowel harmony to conjugation.

Let’s get started.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. General Overview
  2. Word Order
  3. Word Structure and Agglutination
  4. Suffixes, Vowel Harmony, and Buffers
  5. Possessives
  6. Verbs and Conjugation
  7. Access More Turkish Grammar Content on TurkishClass101.com

1. General Overview

Before we get into the details, it’s important that we cover the basic Turkish grammar rules and how they compare to those you’re familiar with in English. 

Similarities

First of all, both languages use the Latin alphabet. The Turkish alphabet, however, consists of 29 letters, 6 of which don’t exist in English ( , , , , , ). There are also 3 letters in English (-q, -w, -x) that don’t exist in the Turkish alphabet.

There are a few words that exist in both Turkish and English that have the same meaning:

    ➢ TV
    ➢ Plan
    ➢ Program
    ➢ Market
    ➢ Silo
    ➢ Video

Like English, Turkish also uses the indefinite article in front of nouns as a separate word: 

    Bir araba (“A car”)
    Bir otel (“A hotel”)

In addition, neither Turkish nor English uses grammatical gender for objects.

It’s safe to say that there are no accent marks in English, since the words that have them are taken from other languages. There are no accent marks in Turkish, either. 

However, the circumflex is used for some loanwords. It affects the pronunciation of a word by implying that the word’s pronunciation should be longer or that there should be palletization of the consonant that comes before the vowel.

For example: “Âmâ” is an Arabic word that means “blind.” The circumflex here makes both of the “a” sounds longer. There’s another word, “ama,” which means “but.” Although they are spelled the same way (except for the circumflex), those two words are pronounced differently.

Dissimilarities

Now let’s take a look at the features of Turkish grammar that differ from English.

Pronouns

There’s just one word used in Turkish for “he,” “she,” and “it,” which is o.

In Turkish, the plural “you” is not only used as it is in English, but also as a polite, formal way of addressing someone. The same set of rules apply to both the plural “you” and the polite “you” in Turkish.

The Definite Article

Turkish has no definite article (“the”) as a separate word. When definite nouns or pronouns are used as an object, then they take the “, -i, -u, ” suffixes based on the vowel harmony rules. Let me give you an example:

    Anahtarlar çantamın içinde. (“The keys are in my purse.”) 

Here, “keys” is used without an article.

    Anahtarları çantamın içine koydum. (“I put the keys in my purse.”)

Here, “keys” takes the suffix to indicate the definite article.

Numbers as Adjectives

When numbers are used as adjectives to count nouns, the noun does not become plural based on the number. Rather, it stays in the singular form. Here’s an example:

    Bir elma (“One apple”)
    Beş elma (“Five apples”)

Word Order

The Turkish word order is Subject-Object-Verb. This topic will be covered in more detail later.

Vowel Harmony and Suffixes

Vowel harmony is another feature that doesn’t exist in English. You can see the details about this in the “Suffixes, Vowel Harmony, and Buffers” section of this page.

Conjugations

The conjugation in Turkish is much different from that in English, which we’ll discuss in more detail later on in the “Verbs and Conjugation” section. But to give you an example, there’s a tense called “reported past tense,” which doesn’t exist in most languages. 

2. Word Order 

In Turkish grammar, word order typically follows the SOV (Subject-Object-Verb) structure. In other words, the sentence begins with the subject, which is followed by the object (if any), and then the verb. 

However, this is not a strict rule and there’s some flexibility, meaning that you can put an object or a verb at the beginning of a sentence. Doing so won’t change the meaning of the sentence, but the word you’re emphasizing will definitely change. 

The word that you want to stress should be placed as close to the verb as possible, and if you want to emphasize the verb, then you should place it at the beginning of the sentence.

Subject-Object-VerbBen okulumu seviyorum.“I love my school.”
Object-Subject-VerbOkulumu ben seviyorum.“I love my school.”
Object-Verb-SubjectOkulumu seviyorum ben.“I love my school.”
Verb-Subject-ObjectSeviyorum ben okulumu.“I love my school.”

All of the sentences above have the same meaning, but the emphasis is on the words highlighted in blue.


A List of Subject and Object Pronouns in English

3. Word Structure and Agglutination

In Turkish grammar, suffixes and vowel harmony play a huge role in how words are formed and used. In this section, we’ll introduce you to word structure and agglutination in Turkish. 

Structure of Words

In the structure of a Turkish word, a vowel always follows a consonant and a consonant always follows a vowel:

    bebek (“baby”)
    araba (“car”)

Therefore, if you see a word where one consonant follows another, you can tell that it’s a loanword: 

    pratik (“practical”) 
    armut (“pear”)

In order to keep the “vowel + consonant” rule, buffers are used. Those buffers are “y, n, s.” 

You can see some relevant examples of this in our section on vowel harmony and buffers.

An Image of Atom Structures

Agglutination of Words

Turkish is called an agglutinative language, meaning that new words are formed by adding suffixes to the root words. To give you an idea, a suffix can be added to a noun to 1) make it another noun, or 2) turn it into a verb. It can also be added to a verb to make it a noun or another verb.

Are you confused? Here are some examples to help you understand these Turkish suffix rules better:

    Yolcu (Noun)                                          –       “Passenger”

         Yolcu+luk = Yolculuk (Noun)                –       “Trip”
    Göz (Noun)                                             –        “Eye”

         Göz+le = Gözle (Verb)                           –       “Observe,” “Monitor”
    Bil (Verb)                                                 –         “Know”

         Bil+mece = Bilmece (Noun)                  –       “Puzzle”
    Kal (Verb)                                                –       “Stay”

         Kal+dır = Kaldır (Verb)                          –       “Lift,” “Remove”

4. Suffixes, Vowel Harmony, and Buffers

People who want to learn Turkish grammar and vocabulary usually think that these characteristics are really interesting, probably because they don’t exist in most other languages. I wonder if you’ll agree with them!

That said, these are some of the most important Turkish language grammar rules, so pay attention.

Vowel Harmony

In Turkish, words are structured so that vowels follow a certain pattern, and this pattern is called vowel harmony. It’s used to determine which vowel will be used when adding a suffix to a word. Here’s a table showing the vowel types:

 FRONTBACK
 UNROUNDEDROUNDEDUNROUNDEDROUNDED
OPEN-e-a-o
CLOSED-i-u

And here are the vowel harmony rules:

  • Back vowels follow back vowels and front vowels follow front vowels.
  • Unrounded vowels follow unrounded vowels.
  • A rounded vowel can be followed by a mix of rounded closed and unrounded open vowels.

Suffixes

Let’s see when suffixes are added:

  • Suffixes are based on the person/subject that a verb alludes to.
  • Suffixes are used when the subject is plural.
  • Suffixes are used based on the tenses.
  • Suffixes are used if there is negativity.
  • Suffixes are used if interrogative particles will be used.
  • Suffixes are used when passive, reflexive, causative, or a verb of mutual action will be formed.
  • When definite nouns or pronouns are used as an object, then they take the “, -i, -u, ” suffixes, based on the vowel harmony rules.
  • Suffixes are used when using possessive pronouns, since there are no separate words for them in Turkish. The suffixes “-m, -ım, -im, -um, -üm” (in conjugated forms) come after the pronoun to make it possessive.
  • Suffixes are used when motion towards an object (to), motion from an object (from), and static location (on, at) is to be specified.

It’s a great thing to be able to use the right suffix! However, you also need to make sure that you choose the right vowels for those suffixes based on the vowel harmony.

Buffers

As mentioned earlier, there are three buffers (y, n, s). These are used to maintain the “vowel + consonant” rule when adding suffixes.

  • Usage of “y“:
    • Used with an accusative suffix

      Example: Silgi+y+i = Silgiyi (“The eraser”)

    • Used with dative. (Movement towards something)

      Example: Parti+y+e = Partiye (“To the party”)
  • Usage of “n“:
    • Used with genitive case [Ownership]

      Example: Ayna+n+ın = Aynanın (“The mirror’s”)

                     Aynası+n+ın = Aynasının (“His/her/its mirror”)

    • Used for nouns that already have suffixes

      Example: Boya+lar+ı+n+a = Boyalarına (“To their paints”)

                     Oda+sı+n+dan = Odasından (“From his/her/its room”)
  • Usage of “s“:
    • Only used with the third person suffixes (, -i, -u,)

      Example: Elma+s= Elması (“His/her/its apple”)

5. Possessives

In Turkish grammar, possessives are formed much differently from how English speakers are used to. In this section, we’ll cover two topics: how to form possessive pronouns and how to use the possessive (genitive) case.

Possessive Pronouns

In the Turkish language, there aren’t separate words that stand for possessive pronouns. However, suffixes (-m, -ım, -im, -um, -üm), in conjugated forms, come after a pronoun to make it possessive. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples:

    Sen+in = Senin (“Your”)
    Biz+im = Bizim (“Our”)

Possessive pronouns can be omitted because the nouns they are modifying also take suffixes, which imply the possessive pronoun. However, if you want to stress the possessive pronoun, then you can use it in the sentence. Here are some examples:

    Benim valizim çok küçük. (“My suitcase is very small.”)
        Valizim çok küçük. (“My suitcase is very small.”)
    Sizin aileniz nerede? (“Where is your family?”)
        Aileniz nerede? (“Where is your family?”)

Possessive (Genitive) Case

In the possessive case, both the “possessor” and “possessed” are suffixed. Here are a couple of examples:

    Araba+nın anahtar+ı (“The car’s key”)
    Elbise+nin düğme+si (“The button of the dress”)

6. Verbs and Conjugation

The final points we’ll cover today have to do with verbs and conjugation. 


How to Form Different Types of Verbs

  • Passive verbs are formed by adding the affixes -n, -il, or -in. Here are some examples:

         Okumak (“To read”)

         Oku+n+mak (“To be read”)

         Germek (“To stretch”)

         Ger+il+mek (“To be stretched”)

         Silmek (“To erase”)

         Sil+in+mek (“To be erased”)
  • Causative verbs are formed by adding the affixes -dir, -t, or -ir. Below are some examples:

         Yemek (“To eat”)

         Ye+dir+mek (“To make somebody eat”)

         Pişirmek (“To cook”)

         Pişir+t+mek (“To have something cooked”)

         İçmek (“To drink”)

         İç+ir+mek (“To make someone drink”)
  • Reflexive verbs are formed by adding the -in affix. Here is an example:

         Giymek (“To wear clothes”)

         Giy+in+mek (“To dress oneself”)
  • Verbs of mutual action are formed by adding the -iş affix. For example:

         Çarpmak (“To hit”)

         Çarp+ış+mak (“To collide”)

Reported Past Tense

I can hear you asking, “Reported tense? What is that?” 

You’re absolutely right in asking this question because it’s not a very common tense.

A Mother Reading Her Laughing Baby a Story

It’s used:

  • when the speaker is explaining something that he/she hasn’t witnessed, but heard from someone else

         Annem bana hediye almış. (“My mother bought me a gift.”)

         [My mother told me she did, but I didn’t see her buying it.]
  •  when telling a story

         Güzel bir kız varmış. (“There was a beautiful girl.”)

         [I haven’t seen the girl, it’s just a character in a story.]
  •  when the speaker is telling someone that he/she (the speaker) has done something without noticing it

         Durakta uyumuşum ve otobüsü kaçırmışım. (“I slept at the bus stop and missed the bus.”)

         [I didn’t realize I slept and missed the bus.]

         Ben kitabı daha önce okumuşum. (“I have read this book before.”)

         [I started reading a book, but realized that I read it before and forgot until now.]
  • when you’re telling someone about your dream

         Rüyamda çok zenginmişim. (“I was very rich in my dream.”)

         [It’s like storytelling; you’re telling someone about your dream, which is not reality.]
  • when imagining something and telling someone

         Mesela, benim iki çocuğum varmış. (“For example, I had two kids.”)

         [This is again not reality; you’re imagining that you had two kids.]

Verb Conjugation

In Turkish grammar, verb conjugation is based on the following factors:

  • Person / Subject: In Turkish, different suffixes are added to a verb based on the person/subject it alludes to. Vowels in the suffixes change based on the vowel harmony rules.
  • Number of Subjects: Whether the subject is singular or plural impacts the suffix that the verb will get.
  • Politeness Level: As mentioned above, the plural “you” is also the polite “you” and the same rules are applied to both.
  • Tense: Based on the tense, verbs take different suffixes.

7. Access More Turkish Grammar Content on TurkishClass101.com

In this article, we presented you with information on the major topics of Turkish grammar. Which aspects seem the most difficult to you, and why? Let us know in the comments! 

Now that you have a better idea of what to expect from the language, you should have little trouble as you continue learning Turkish grammar online with us. 

Want to learn Turkish grammar and vocabulary in depth? Bookmark TurkishClass101.com! Take advantage of our numerous audio recordings, vocabulary lists, and free resources—including our Turkish-English dictionary that you can refer to anytime.

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Best of all, you can learn Turkish anywhere, anytime by downloading the app for free!

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Is Turkish Hard to Learn?

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Any time we set out to learn something new—whether it be cooking, sewing, ballet, or biology—it intimidates us. Not knowing what we’ll face makes us worry. Furthermore, we question our ability to learn that specific thing because we’ve never done it before. These same concerns pop up when someone starts learning another language. 

But is Turkish hard to learn? Or is it easier than you think? 

The answer is simple: It might be different from the languages you know and speak, but it’s not difficult.

Yes or No

Yes, it will take some time and effort to learn Turkish, but as we all know, nobody becomes an expert right away. 

In this article, we’ll show you the easy parts of Turkish and help you understand the more challenging parts. This way, you’ll know what areas to really focus on when studying. TurkishClass101 will help you eliminate any prejudice you may have about the Turkish language and answer the question “How easy is Turkish to learn?”

Now, let’s start by talking about the easy features of Turkish.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Learning Turkish Table of Contents
  1. What Makes Turkish Easy to Learn?
  2. So What Makes Turkish Hard to Learn?
  3. How to Start Learning Turkish
  4. TurkishClass101 is Awesome for Learning Turkish!
  5. Utilize TurkishClass101 to Learn Turkish Today!

1. What Makes Turkish Easy to Learn?

Turkish uses the Latin alphabet, which gives most learners an advantage because more than 6000 languages worldwide use the Latin-based alphabet. There might be additional letters (or even missing letters) compared to other Latin-based languages, but still, it’s not like you’ll need to rediscover America! You’ll just need to learn how the letters sound.

Great news for those who aren’t familiar with genders or gender-related conjugations: Turkish doesn’t have any grammatical gender. That’s one less thing to worry about! 

Can you guess what else you won’t have to worry about? The article “the” doesn’t exist in Turkish. This means you don’t have to do anything special for nouns that function as subjects in a sentence. However, if a sentence has a noun that functions as an object, it will require a suffix:

  • “The notebook is in my bag.” (Defter çantamın içinde.

“Notebook” is used without an article in Turkish.

  • “I put the notebook in my bag.” (Defteri çantamın içine koydum.)

Here, “notebook” takes the suffix “i” in Turkish to indicate the article “the,” which is not a separate word in Turkish.

Let’s continue with another convenience. There are no accents in Turkish as there are in some languages (like French), so you won’t have to constantly ask yourself whether the accent is to the left or to the right! We only use the circumflex for loanwords, which is not a big deal!

The convenience doesn’t end there: Turkish also has a flexible word order. Turkish does use the SOV (Subject-Object-Verb) order, which is different from English, but you don’t need to use this order all the time. For example, you can put an object or a verb at the beginning of a sentence without changing its meaning; you’ll only be changing which word is emphasized. Therefore, changing the word order a little bit isn’t usually a problem. However, you have to place the suffixes correctly when you change the order of the words.

Here are some pairs of sentences which are all correct despite having a different word order. 

  • Ne yapacaksın bugün? – “What will you do today?”
  • Bugün ne yapacaksın? – “What will you do today?”
  • Buraya gel! – “Come here!”
  • Gel buraya! – “Come here!”
  • Bugün çok yorgunum. – “I’m very tired today.”
  • Çok yorgunum bugün. – “I’m very tired today.”

2. So What Makes Turkish Hard to Learn?

Whenever a student asks me why Turkish is hard to learn, I always tell them that the question needs to be rephrased: “Is Turkish hard to learn?” I try to break the prejudices first. Then, I answer by letting them know that while there will be challenges, the language itself is not hard. 

That said, let’s look at some characteristics that make Turkish difficult to learn for foreigners.

Suffixes and vowel harmony

Suffixes are one of the most challenging aspects of the language for new Turkish-learners, because these suffixes don’t exist in most other languages.

Suffixes are added;

  • based on the person/subject that a verb alludes to.
  • if the subject is plural.
  • when definite nouns or pronouns are used as an object. Then, they take the “-ı, -i, -u, -ü” suffixes based on the vowel harmony rules.
  • when using possessive pronouns, because there aren’t separate words for them in Turkish. However, the “-m, -ım, -im, -um,-üm” suffixes (in conjugated forms) come after the pronoun to make it possessive.
  • based on the tenses.
  • when negativity is used.
  • when interrogative particles are used.

Once you learn when to use suffixes, the rules for their application, and the vowel harmony, it won’t seem nearly as difficult as it does now.

The pronunciation of letters that don’t exist in English

There are six letters in the Turkish alphabet that don’t exist in English: -ç, -ğ, -ı, -ö, -ş, -ü.

Pronunciation

The letter ç, which is the “ch” sound in English (as in “challenge” or “chair”), and the letter ş, which is the “sh” sound in English (as in “shell” or “shame”) are usually pronounced correctly. However, new learners often struggle with the other four.

  • ğ is pronounced like the “ou” syllable in the words “ounce” and “our.” 
  • ı is pronounced like the second “o” in the word “color.”
  • ö is pronounced like the “u” in the word “turn.”
  • ü is pronounced like the “u” in the word “pure.”

Practicing the pronunciation of words that contain these letters will help you overcome any initial difficulties you might have with them.

Conjugation

Conjugation can make Turkish difficult when you first start studying the language. However, as you learn the rules and practice, you’ll be much less intimidated by it.

You need to know the factors that affect verb conjugation in Turkish, which are:

  • Person / Subject
  • Number of subject (singular or plural)
  • Politeness level
  • Tense

You should also note that there are passive voice, causative verbs (verbs formed by adding the causative suffix after the verb root), reflexive verbs, and a verb of mutual action in addition to verb conjugation.

3. How to Start Learning Turkish

Have you decided Turkish isn’t so bad after all? Here are some tips from TurkishClass101.com on how to get started with your Turkish studies! 

Alphabet

I’d recommend starting with the alphabet. As I mentioned earlier, not only do some of the letters look different, but they’re also pronounced differently. Make sure to learn how the consonants and vowels sound. Then, additional effort may be required to learn how the letters that don’t exist in your mother tongue are pronounced.

Vocabulary

Learning vocabulary is also essential. You need to start building up your vocabulary (nouns, adjectives, verbs), so once you start learning basic grammar, you can start applying the vocabulary you’ve learned.

Vocabulary

You can expand your vocabulary by reading and listening. Make sure to write down the words you don’t know, and always use a dictionary. You can also make flashcards to help you remember words and their meanings. Remember that you need to repeat and use a word many times to memorize it.

Basic Grammar

Once that’s out of the way, start learning basic grammar so you can start making sentences. It might be a good idea to start with pronouns, then word order, sentence structure, and conjugation.

Practice

Finally, you need to put together all you’ve learned and put it to practice. I put “practice” at the end, but that doesn’t mean you have to learn everything before you start practicing. You have to practice as you go, and don’t shy away from making mistakes. On the contrary, be bold and use every opportunity to use the new things you’ve learned:

  • You should listen to Turkish radio channels and Turkish music. This will help expand your vocabulary, improve your pronunciation, and give you better overall language comprehension.
  • You should read Turkish blogs, articles, and books. This will expand your vocabulary even further and improve your comprehension.
  • You should watch Turkish TV shows or videos to improve your vocabulary, pronunciation, and language comprehension.
  • Try practicing with native Turkish-speakers whenever possible, as they can help point out and correct your mistakes. This will definitely boost your speaking ability! 

4. TurkishClass101 is Awesome for Learning Turkish!

Would you like to learn and practice Turkish in the quickest, easiest, and most fun way? If yes, all you need to do is visit TurkishClass101.com.

TurkishClass101

Here are some fantastic benefits you can expect when you sign up:

All-in-one resource

Our website teaches you everything you need to know about Turkish and gives you endless opportunities to practice. It teaches you grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation, and helps you build your listening, writing, reading, and speaking skills. We even teach you about the country’s culture!

Free resources

TurkishClass101.com has many free resources you can use. 

Here, you can learn the Turkish language basics, practice your Turkish pronunciation, and study the entire Turkish alphabet. Furthermore, you can learn about Turkish grammar, memorize the 100 Most Common Words, and master a few Key Turkish Phrases.

To learn more vocabulary, you get free access to our themed vocabulary lists, receive a word of the day, and can utilize our Turkish-English dictionary

Premium services

There’s also MyTeacher, a Premium PLUS service of TurkishClass101 that you can use to practice with a private teacher.

This service provides:

  • One-on-one interaction with your personal teacher
  • Guidance and ongoing assessment 
  • Weekly assignments 
  • Constructive feedback
  • Badges for the assignments you complete

Mobility when learning

Don’t fall behind! Keep learning Turkish wherever you are, and never let you location be a barrier in your language-learning. 

How? Download the app for free and use it anywhere, anytime.

Mobile App

5. Utilize TurkishClass101 to Learn Turkish Today! 

Now you know the easiest and the most challenging parts of learning Turkish! We’ve given you advice on where to start and how to facilitate your learning with TurkishClass101.

Don’t lose any time; check out TurkishClass101 and utilize all of the resources mentioned above. Also, make sure to provide us with feedback about your experience with TurkishClass101!

Before you go, we’re curious: Do you find the Turkish language easy or hard so far? Let us know in the comments, and feel free to ask any questions you still have!

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Common Mistakes in Learning Turkish

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Making mistakes while learning a language is inevitable. Every language has its own unique linguistic features such as phonology, grammar, and vocabulary to take into account. In addition, the habit of comparing the new language to one’s mother tongue can impact one’s use of the new language and lead to mistakes.

I Shouldn’t Have Made This Mistake!

In this article, we’ll talk about the most common Turkish mistakes that learners make when speaking, writing, and listening! We’ll cover a range of common Turkish grammar mistakes and mistakes in pronunciation and spelling, so that you can better avoid them.

Let’s get started.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Pronunciation Mistakes
  2. Word Order Mistakes
  3. Grammar Mistakes
  4. Other Common Mistakes
  5. How to Avoid Making Mistakes in Turkish
  6. Avoid Mistakes in Turkish with the Help of TurkishClass101

1. Pronunciation Mistakes

In Turkish, words are read the way they’re written and written the way they’re read. However, there are a lot of words that come from other languages, and in most cases, their pronunciation is different from the Turkish words’ pronunciation.

We can categorize the most common pronunciation mistakes for Turkish learners as follows:

1. Mispronunciation of the letters that don’t exist in English

2. Mispronunciation of words with a circumflex

3. Tones and intonation

Man Trying to Pronounce Words

A- Mispronunciation of the letters that don’t exist in English

As you’ll recall, the Turkish alphabet consists of 29 letters, six of which don’t exist in English: 

The letter ç, which is the “ch” sound in the English words “chin” or “chimney,” and the letter ş, which is the “sh” sound in the English words “shock” or “shout,” are usually pronounced correctly. However, the other four are troublesome, for sure.

Turkish learners usually have a tendency to:

  • Pronounce ğ like a “g”

However, it’s supposed to be pronounced like the “ou” syllable in the words “ouch” or “out.” Actually, it just elongates the preceding vowel. 

It should be noted that no words in Turkish start with a ğ. Take, for example: ağ (“network”), yağmur (“rain”).

  •  Pronounce ı like an “i”

It should be pronounced like the second “o” in the word “color,” or like the “e” in the word “cooker.” Remember that when you pronounce this letter like an “i,” it will impact the meaning of the word. For example:

Ilım (“Moderation”)

İlim (“Science”)

  • Pronounce ö like an “o”

It should be pronounced like the “i” in the word “bird,” or like the “u” in the word “curtain.” When you pronounce this letter like an “o,” it will impact the meaning of the word. For example:

Ön (“Front”)

On (“Ten”)

  • Pronounce ü like a “u”

It should be pronounced like the “u” in the words “pure” and “mute.” When you pronounce this letter like a “u,” it will change the meaning of the word. For example:

Üç (“Three”)

(“Edge”)

B- Mispronunciation of words with a circumflex

The circumflex is a diacritic sign written above a letter that affects the pronunciation of a word. It’s used in loanwords.

A letter with a circumflex above it is pronounced differently than the same letter without a circumflex. It implies a longer pronunciation of the letter or the palletization of the consonant that comes before it.

Mispronouncing words with a circumflex is one of the most common pronunciation mistakes for Turkish learners.

Here are some words that contain a circumflex and what they mean if they’re pronounced incorrectly:

  • “Hâlâ” is an Arabic word that means “still” or “yet.” The circumflex here makes the “a” longer and performs the palletization of the letter “l.” Pronouncing the word without the circumflex would make it sound like the word hala, which is a Turkish word meaning “sister of father.” Although they’re spelled the same way except for the circumflex, they’re pronounced differently.
  • “Kâr” is a Persian word that means “profit.” The circumflex performs the same actions as in the previous word. Pronouncing this word without the circumflex would make it sound like the word kar, which means “snow.” Even though they’re spelled the same way except for the circumflex, they’re pronounced differently.
  • “Âmâ” is an Arabic word that means “blind.” The circumflex here makes both the first and last “a” longer. Pronouncing this word without the circumflex would make it sound like the word ama, which means “but.” As seen in the example, although they’re spelled the same way except for the circumflex, these two words are pronounced differently.

C- Tones and intonation

Tones are used to express certain feelings, such as excitement, fear, anger, and hope. Depending on the emotion we want to express, we pronounce the letters or words in a hard, soft, short, or long way, or with a low or high pitch.

Intonation puts an emphasis on the syllables or words that we want to highlight. 

How a person uses tones and intonation is likely to be influenced by that speaker’s mother tongue. 

Foreigners usually…

  • …put an emphasis on the last letter of one-syllable words. However, there’s no intonation on one-syllable words in Turkish.
  • …don’t use intonation on the last syllable if the word consists of multiple syllables. However, the intonation is usually on the last syllable if the word is made up of multiple syllables, except for two-syllable names of places and intensive adjectives, such as: İzmir [name of a city in Turkey] and Kapkara [“Coal-black”] where the intonation is on the first syllable.
  • …get confused when a word gets a suffix. In Turkish, a suffix gets the intonation of the last syllable.

When it comes to sentences, you need to keep in mind that:

  • In simple sentences, verbs are stressed. (Ex: Ben geliyorum. – “I’m coming.”)
  • In more complex sentences, the word that’s before the verb is usually stressed. (Ex: İşten şimdi geldim. – “I just came from work.”)

Here are some other tips for you:

  • In Turkish, in order to emphasize a word, you can change the place of an object with a subject (or vice-versa).
  • As you’ll recall, the suffixes that verbs take imply the personal pronoun already, so you don’t have to use them in sentences unless you want to emphasize the pronoun.
  • You can also elongate a certain word in a sentence to stress it.

2. Word Order Mistakes

When learning Turkish, foreigners whose mother tongue uses the SVO (Subject-Verb-Object) word order usually put the verb after the subject in Turkish. However, the typical Turkish word order is SOV (Subject-Object-Verb), which means that the subject precedes the object, and the object precedes the verb. Furthermore, suffixes will always be at the end, agglutinated to the words.

To avoid this kind of error in Turkish, you also need to keep the following in mind:

  • Turkish personal pronouns are usually omitted since the suffix of a verb implies the pronoun already.
  • Some of the time-related words become adverbs of time when grouped together with other words. These adverbs are located at the beginning of a sentence unless a subject is used in that sentence. (Ex: Sabaha kadar dans ettik. – “We danced until the morning.”)

Turkish word order is more flexible than that of English! For example, you can put an object or a verb at the beginning of a sentence in Turkish. It won’t change the meaning, but the word you’re stressing will definitely change. You can use this flexibility once you’re more comfortable with Turkish, but not in the early stages of your learning.

3. Grammar Mistakes

Common Turkish grammar mistakes tend to fall under these categories:

  • Suffixes
  • Tenses
  • Conjugation

A- Suffixes

Suffixes are one of the most problematic topics for Turkish learners, since they don’t exist in most other languages. Knowing which suffix to use is not sufficient if you want to use it correctly. You also have to know the vowel harmony rules to choose the right vowels in the suffixes.

The most common mistakes in learning Turkish suffixes are made…

  • …when adding a suffix to a verb based on the person/subject it alludes to.
  • …when determining the suffix required for a singular vs. plural subject.
  • …when using the definite article “the” (because there isn’t a separate word for it in the Turkish language). When definite nouns or pronouns are used as an object, they take the “-ı, -i, -u, -ü” suffixes based on the vowel harmony rules.
  • …when using possessive pronouns (because there aren’t separate words for them in Turkish). However, the “-m, -ım, -im, -um,-üm” suffixes (in conjugated forms) come after the pronoun to make it possessive.

Turkish learners find it even more complicated to make a negative or interrogative sentence. Here are some common Turkish mistakes in these areas:

Incorrect usageCorrect usageWhat it means in English
İyiyim değil.İyi değilim.“I’m not well.”
Yok değil.Var.“There is/are.”
Geliyor değilim.Gelmiyorum.“I’m not coming.”
Gidiyorsun mu?Gidiyor musun?“Are you going?”

B- Tenses

Foreigners learning Turkish also find tenses very confusing. This is because verbs get:

  • suffixes according to the tense
  • suffixes based on the plural subject
  • suffixes according to the personal pronoun
  • sometimes buffers

When negativity or interrogation is added, it gets even more complicated. Forming a negative sentence requires that another suffix is added to the verb. To make a question, interrogative particles get personal suffixes and are written separately.

There’s one more thing concerning tenses that really trips learners up: the “reported past tense,” which doesn’t exist in most other languages.

Reported past tense is used for past events that we haven’t witnessed ourselves, but heard about from someone else. It’s also used when we’re not completely sure whether a specific event has taken place or not. Here are a couple of examples:

  • Babam iki kez ABD’ye gitmiş. (“My father has gone to the USA twice.”)
  • Ödevlerini yapmamışlar. (“They haven’t done their homework.”)

Unfortunately, most foreigners refuse to use this tense because it doesn’t make much sense to them. They insist on using the definite past tense instead of this tense, even if they haven’t witnessed what they’re talking about.

C- Conjugation

The factors that affect verb conjugation in Turkish are:

  • Person/subject
  • Number
  • Politeness level
  • Tense

We’ve covered all of these factors above, except for the politeness level. In Turkish, we use the plural “you” both as it’s used in English, and also as a formal way of addressing someone. The polite “you” follows the same rules as the plural “you” in Turkish.

Most foreigners tend not to use the polite “you.”

Woman Pointing Her Finger at Someone

Keep in mind that, in addition to verb conjugation, there are also passive voice, causative verbs (verbs formed by adding the causative suffix after the verb root), reflexive verbs, and verbs of mutual action.

Let’s see some examples of them:

Correct usageIncorrect usageWhat it means in EnglishNote
YerilmekYerelmek“To be criticized”This is an example of passive voice. Foreigners usually conjugate the word yermek (“to criticize”) incorrectly.
Çıkarmak (yukarı)Çıktırmak“To make someone go up”This is a causative case. Foreigners usually conjugate the word çıkmak (“to go up,” “to climb”) incorrectly.
YormakYordurmak“To make someone tired” 
GöstermekGördürmek“To show”This is an irregular causative case where the word görmek (“to see”) is conjugated.
Birbirine vermekVerişmek“To give each other”There aren’t any verbs of mutual action for the verb vermek (“to give”). However, foreigners have a tendency to conjugate it, which is not correct.

4. Other Common Mistakes

Here are a few more common Turkish mistakes that learners tend to make! 

A- More pronunciation mistakes

The “h” sound can lead to pronunciation problems, because “h” in the middle or at the end of a word is pronounced in Turkish (unlike in English). For example, Mehmet, which is a name, is pronounced as “Mehhh-met,” not “Me-met.”

Also remember that the Turkish “c” is pronounced as “j” or “g” in English. It’s not pronounced like the “c” in “cereal.” For example, Can, which is a name, is pronounced as “John.”

B- Words that need to be written separately

Interrogative particles, which are used to form “yes-or-no” questions, are written separately in Turkish even though they don’t mean anything when used alone. Even native speakers sometimes make this mistake in Turkish!

C- The words de and da, which mean “also,” need to be written separately as well. De and da are also used as the prepositions “at” and “in,” in which case, they’re supposed to be written together with the word. The suffixes -de and -da are often confused with the words de and da.

Here are some examples:

  • Bu gece annemde kalacağım. (“I am going to stay at my mom’s tonight.”)
  • Bu gece annem de kalacak. (“My mother will also stay tonight.”)
  • Kitabın benim çantamda. (“Your book is in my bag.”)
  • Telefonun da benim çantamda. (“Your phone is also in my bag.”)
Yes and No Questions

D- Words even Turkish people pronounce incorrectly

 Here are some words that even Turkish people can’t pronounce correctly! 

Correct pronunciationMeaning of the wordIncorrect pronunciation
Aferin“Good job,” “Well done”Aferim
Arabesk“Arabesque”Arabeks
Bağırsak“Intestine”Barsak
Bıçak“Knife”Pıçak
Ekşi“Sour”Eşki
Herkes“Everybody”Herkez
İddia“Bet”İddaa
Kibrit“Match”Kirbit
Pasaj“Passage”Paşaz
Sürpriz“Surprise”Süpriz
Şarj“Charge”Şarz
Şemsiye“Umbrella”Şemşiye
Tuvalet“Toilet”Tualet
Yalnız“Alone”Yanlız
Yanlış“Wrong”Yalnış

5. How to Avoid Making Mistakes in Turkish

Wondering how you can avoid making an embarrassing mistake in Turkish? Here are a few pointers! 

1. Forget about your native language.

Your mother tongue will have an impact on your Turkish, from grammar habits to phonology. Therefore, you need to put your native language on the shelf for a while. Otherwise, your habits of using your own language will lead to mistakes in Turkish. After a while, you’ll be able to handle both languages separately, but until then, you should forget about your native language.

2. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes.

Every one of us makes mistakes in different areas of life. Those mistakes help us learn not to make more mistakes. There’s an anonymous quote that I saw on the internet. I liked it a lot and wanted to share with you: “A mistake should be your teacher, not your attacker. A mistake is a lesson, not a loss. It is a temporary, necessary detour, not a dead end.”      

Remember this quote and don’t be afraid of speaking Turkish. No one will judge you if you make mistakes. On the contrary, they’ll appreciate your courage. Even if you make mistakes in Turkish, those mistakes will help you avoid making more mistakes in the future.

Don’t Tape Your Mouth!

3. Use every opportunity to speak with native Turkish speakers.

There’s always a lot to learn from native speakers, so you should try practicing with Turkish people whenever possible. This way, you can also learn idioms and slang! Native speakers can also show you your mistakes and tell you how to correct them.

4. Be determined.

Don’t let the mistakes you make discourage you. Learning a new language isn’t easy. It requires time. The beginning stages can be tough. But if you don’t give up, you’ll see that it’s possible to learn the language and use it well! 

6. Avoid Mistakes in Turkish with the Help of TurkishClass101

After learning about all of these common Turkish mistakes, do you still feel that Turkish is difficult? I don’t think so. I’m sure that these tips will help you stay away from those mistakes, and that as you make fewer mistakes, you’ll get the prejudice that it’s difficult out of your mind.

Visit TurkishClass101.com and check out our numerous audio recordings, themed vocabulary lists, and free resources (including a handy dictionary you can refer to), in order to get a better grasp of Turkish.

Don’t forget that there’s also MyTeacher, a Premium service of TurkishClass101 that you can use to practice with a private teacher.

What’s more? You can download the app for free and use it wherever you are!

Last but not least, please continue to provide us with feedback about all the resources provided at TurkishClass101.

Before you go, let us know in the comments which Turkish mistakes you struggle with the most!

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Using Turkish Questions and Answers is a Piece of Cake Now!

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Questions are everywhere! We ask questions when shopping, when having a conversation with a friend, when we interview someone, and when we’re at school, work, or a restaurant.

Where is the Hospital?

Questions become even more critical when you’re in a foreign country. While in Turkey, you might need to ask for the time, or where a certain place is, like a hospital or restroom. You might also find yourself in a position where you need to ask permission to do something.

Knowing how to ask basic questions in the Turkish language, and understanding the Turkish question patterns, is essential if you want your needs fulfilled faster. You should also be able to answer simple questions easily and express yourself in a clear manner.

In this article, you’ll learn the Turkish question words and how to make questions in Turkish. You’ll see that forming questions in Turkish is easier than you thought!

Let’s start with how to say “question” in Turkish:

  • Soru (“Question”)
  • Cevap / Yanıt (“Answer”)

Keep in mind that there are both “regular” questions that use Turkish question words and yes-no questions in Turkish, like in English. Now, let’s see how these two types of questions in Turkish are used.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Regular Questions in Turkish
  2. Yes-No Questions in Turkish
  3. What Can You Ask?
  4. Practice Turkish Questions and Answers with TurkishClass101!

1. Regular Questions in Turkish

Regular questions are those we ask using “what,” “when,” “where,” “how,” “why,” and other types of question words.

Below is a table of the Turkish question words that are commonly used:

#TurkishEnglish
1Ne?“What?”
2Kim?“Who?”
3Kimi?“Whom?”
4Kime?“To whom?”
5Kimin?“Whose?”
6Hangi?“Which?”
7Hangisi?“Which one?”
8Ne zaman?“When?”
9Nerede?“Where?”
10Nereden?“From where?”
11Nereye?“To where?”
12Ne kadar?“How much?” / How long?”
13Kaç tane?“How many?”
14Nasıl?“How?”
15Niçin? / Neden?“Why?”

2. Yes-No Questions in Turkish

Yes-no questions are formed by using interrogative particles (-mı,-mi, -mu, -mü, and their conjugated forms). They’re placed at the end of a sentence right after the verb. Although they don’t mean anything on their own, they’re still used as separate words. Here are a few examples of yes-no Turkish questions:

  • Bugün üzgün müsün? (“Are you sad today?”)
  • Yarın hastaneye gidecek misin? (“Will you go to the hospital tomorrow?”)
  • Okul bugün başladı ? (“Did school start today?”)

3. What Can You Ask?

Life is full of questions, as we mentioned earlier. Who knows how many questions we ask in a day? Of course, it’s not possible to cover all of the questions in the Turkish language, or any language for that matter.

A Woman Questioning and Wondering about Things

Below, we’ve categorized the most common Turkish questions and answers, based on the types of situations they’re used in.

Please note that all of the questions and answers covered here use the second singular person (informal “you”).

1. General Information

The chart below will outline what you should know for asking questions in Turkish about more general information.

#Question in TurkishAnswer in TurkishQuestion in EnglishAnswer in English
1Bu ne? / Ne bu? / Bu nedir? / Nedir bu?Bu bir kamera.“What is this?”“This is a camera.”
2Bu kim? / Kim bu?Bu benim kuzenim.“Who is this?”“This is my cousin.”
3Postane nerede?Caddenin sonunda.“Where is the post office?”“At the end of the street.”
4Saat kaç? / Saatin kaç?Saat beşi on geçiyor.“What time is it?”“It’s ten past five.”
5Yarın hava nasıl?Yağmurlu olacak.“How is the weather tomorrow?”“It will be rainy.”
6Bu havlu kaç para? / Bu havlu ne kadar?On beş Lira“How much is this towel?”“Fifteen Liras.”
7İzmir Ankara’dan ne kadar uzakta?Yaklaşık 600 km.“How far is İzmir from Ankara?” “Approximately 600 km.”
8Sana yardım edebilir miyim? / Sana yardımcı olabilir miyim?Evet, lütfen.
Hayır, teşekkürler.
“Can I help you?” “Yes, please.”
“No, thanks.”
9Bana yardım edebilir misin? / Bana yardımcı olabilir misin?Tabi.
Yok, kusura bakma; gitmem lazım.
“Can you help me?” “Sure.”
“No offense; I have to go.”

2. Personal Information

First Encounter

The following Turkish questions and answers will help you exchange personal information in Turkey:

#Question in TurkishAnswer in TurkishQuestion in EnglishAnswer in English
1Adın ne? / İsmin ne?Adım Mary.
İsmim Mary.
“What is your name?”“My name is Mary.”
2Kaç yaşındasın?Otuz yaşındayım.“How old are you?” “I’m thirty years old.”
3Nerelisin? / Neredensin?Amerikalıyım.“Where are you from?” “I’m from the USA.”
4Nerede yaşıyorsun? / Nerede oturuyorsun?San Diego’da yaşıyorum.
San Diego’da oturuyorum.
“Where do you live?” “I live in San Diego.”
5Hobilerin neler?Seyahat etmek ve yüzmek.
Seyahat etmeyi ve yüzmeyi severim.
“What are your hobbies?” “To travel and to swim.”
“I like traveling and swimming.”
6Evli misin?Evet, evliyim.
Hayır, değilim.
“Are you married?” “Yes, I’m married.”
“No, I’m not.”
7Çocuğun var mı?Evet, 1 tane var.
Hayır, yok.
“Do you have a kid?”“Yes, I have one.”
“No, I don’t.”
8Kardeşlerin var mı?Evet, 3 kardeşim var.
Hayır, yok.
“Do you have siblings?”“Yes, I have three siblings.”
“No, I don’t.”
9İngilizce biliyor musun? / İngilizce konuşuyor musun?Evet, biraz.
Maalesef hayır.
“Do you speak English?”“Yes, a little bit.”
“Unfortunately, no.”

3. School-Related Questions

Aa Question Mark Drawn on a Chalkboard

The examples below will guide you in how to ask questions in Turkish about topics related to school.

#Question in TurkishAnswer in TurkishQuestion in EnglishAnswer in English
1Öğrenci misin?Evet, öğrenciyim.
Hayır, değilim.
“Are you a student?” “Yes, I’m a student.”
“No, I’m not.”
2Kaçıncı sınıftasın? / Kaçıncı sınıfa gidiyorsun?7. sınıftayım.
7. sınıfa gidiyorum.
“What grade are you in?” “I’m in seventh grade.”
3Hangi üniversitede okuyorsun?San Diego Üniversitesi’nde okuyorum.“In which university are you studying?” “I’m studying at the University of San Diego.”
4Okulun nerede?  San Diego’da.“Where is your school?”“In San Diego.”
5En sevdiğin ders ne?Tarih.“What is your favorite class?” “History.”
6Ne zaman mezun olacaksın?2 yıl sonra.
2 yıl var daha.
“When will you graduate?” “In two years.”
“In more than two years.”
7Mezun olunca ne olacaksın?Arkeolog.“What will you be when you graduate?” “An archaeologist.”
8Matematiği seviyor musun?Evet, seviyorum.
Hayır, hiç sevmem.
“Do you like math?” “Yes, I like it.”
“No, I don’t like it at all.”
9Ödevini yaptın mı? / Ev ödevini yaptın mı?Evet, yaptım.
Hayır, henüz yapmadım.
“Did you do your homework?”“Yes, I did.”
“No, not yet.”

4. Business-Related Questions

Business Associates Sitting at a Circular Table Together

Here are some Turkish questions and answers you can use when carrying out conversations relevant to business: 

#Question in TurkishAnswer in TurkishQuestion in EnglishAnswer in English
1Mesleğin ne?Endüstri mühendisiyim.“What is your profession?” “I’m an industrial engineer.”
2Ne okudun?Mühendislik okudum.“What did you study?” “I studied engineering.”
3Hangi dilleri biliyorsun? / Hangi dilleri konuşuyorsun?Sadece İngilizce biliyorum.“Which languages do you speak?” “I only speak English.”
4Hangi üniversitede okudun?Stanford’da.“Which university did you graduate from?” “Stanford.”
5Daha önce nerede çalıştın?Dole’da çalıştım.“Where did you work before?” “I worked at Dole.”
6___ olarak ne kadar çalıştın?___ olarak 5 yıl çalıştım.“How long have you worked as a ___?” “I have worked as a ___ for five years.”
73 yıl içinde kendini nerede görüyorsun?3 yıl içinde kendimi Üretim Departmanının yöneticisi olarak görüyorum.“Where do you see yourself in three years?” “I see myself as the manager of the Production Department in three years.”
8Özgeçmişin var mı? / CV’in var mı?Evet, var.
Hayır, yok.
“Do you have a CV?” “Yes, I do.”
“No, I don’t.”
9___ konusunda tecrübeli misin? / ___ konusunda deneyimli misin?Evet, tecrübeliyim.
Hayır deneyimli değilim.
“Are you experienced in ___?”“Yes, I’m experienced.”
“No, I’m not experienced.”

5. What if You Need Clarification or More Explanation?

A Woman Struggling to Understand What a Man Is Saying

The following questions in Turkish and their answers can help you get clarity if you didn’t quite understand something you’ve just heard.

#Question in TurkishAnswer in TurkishQuestion in EnglishAnswer in English
1Tekrarlayabilir misin lütfen?Tabi.
Elbette.
“Can you repeat please?” “Sure.”
“Of course.”
2Yavaş konuşabilir misin lütfen?Tabi.
Elbette.
“Can you speak slowly please?” “Sure.”
“Of course.”
3Tekrar anlatabilir misin lütfen?Olur.
Hayır, anlatamam.
“Can you explain it again please?” “Alright.”
“No, I can’t.”
4Benim için yazabilir misin lütfen?Tabi.
Elbette.
“Can you write it down for me please?” “Sure.”
“Of course.”
5Pardon?You can repeat what you said as an answer to this question.“Excuse me?” You can repeat what you said as an answer to this question.
6Bu gerçek mi? / Gerçek mi bu?Evet, gerçek.
Yok, hayır, şaka.
“Is that true?” “Yes, it’s true.”
“No, it’s not; it’s a joke.”
7Bu doğru mu? / Doğru mu bu?Evet, doğru.
Hayır, yanlış.
“Is that correct?” “Yes, it’s correct.”
“No, it’s wrong.”
8Bu yanlış mı? / Yanlış mı bu?Evet, yanlış.
Hayır, doğru.
“Is that wrong?” “Yes, it’s wrong.”
“No, it’s correct.”
9Türkçe de “___” nasıl dersin?“Türkçe’de “___” denir.“How do you say ‘___’ in Turkish?” “It’s said ‘___’ in Turkish.”

4. Practice Turkish Questions and Answers with TurkishClass101!

Wow, you’ve really gone over a lot of info today!

We started with how to say “question” in Turkish and then went on to learn the Turkish question words and the most common Turkish questions and answers. But there’s still so much more to learn. To practice, you can visit TurkishClass101.com and take advantage of our numerous audio recordings, vocabulary lists, dictionary entries, and other free resources.

Don’t forget that you can also use MyTeacher, a Premium service of TurkishClass101 that allows you to practice with a private teacher.

What’s more? You can download the app for free and use it wherever you are.

As usual, we’d be happy to hear your feedback about your experience with the services offered at TurkishClass101! And don’t hesitate to reach out in the comments section with any questions you have about today’s lesson. 

Happy learning! 

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Practicality vs. Theory – Useful Turkish Sentence Patterns

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Grammar is definitely a must when you want to learn a language properly. However, it takes some time to have good command of this crucial factor. Unfortunately, life doesn’t wait for anyone. You might be in a foreign country now, and need to ask for directions or the time—you might even need to know where the closest hospital is. 

Theory doesn’t help much when you need to communicate effectively. This is where practicality kicks in. And by “practicality,” I mean certain patterns you can use in daily conversations.

In this article, we’ll show you ten different Turkish sentence patterns. We’ll start with an easy Turkish sentence pattern and move on to more complex ones. Most of the sentences that you’ll hear, write, or speak will follow these basic sentence patterns. Until you have a good grasp of grammar, the examples provided here will help you understand the basic Turkish sentence structure and sentence patterns.

Sentence Patterns

They’ll not only help you express yourself better and fulfill your needs more quickly in daily life, but they’ll also enable you to speak Turkish sooner and serve as a foundation on which you can build your grammar knowledge.

Let’s get started with some Turkish sentence examples.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Turkish Table of Contents
  1. Sentences Linking Two Nouns
  2. Describing Things
  3. Possession and Ownership
  4. Expressing “Want”
  5. Expressing Needs
  6. Expressing Obligations
  7. Likes and Dislikes
  8. How to Request Something
  9. Asking for Permission
  10. Question Patterns
  11. More Practice with TurkishClass101.com

1. Sentences Linking Two Nouns

Sentence Patterns

This is an easy Turkish sentence pattern, where two nouns are linked to each other.

 TurkishEnglish
1Dan benim erkek arkadaşım(dır).“Dan is my boyfriend.”
2Mary İngilizce öğretmeni(dir).“Mary is an English teacher.”
3Şu büyük ev arkadaşımın eviydi.“That big house was my friend’s house.”
4Bu kitap babamın doğum günü hediyesiydi.“This book was my father’s birthday gift.”
5Ablamın en sevdiği oyuncağı bu bebek(tir).“My elder sister’s favorite toy is this doll.”

Please note that the third person singular pronoun doesn’t have to take the “to be” suffix; you can leave it blank. That’s why I’ve put the suffix in parentheses. You’ll encounter some more of these throughout the article.

Let’s see how you can make variations of this Turkish sentence pattern:

In all of the sentences, you can replace the subject with anything you want. For example: annem (“my mother”); bu araba (“this car”); şu kısa boylu çocuk (“that short child”).

1. In this example, erkek arkadaşım (“my boyfriend”) can be replaced with: öğretmenim (“my teacher”); babam (“my father”); ev arkadaşım (“my roommate”).

2. In the second example, İngilizce öğretmeni(dir) can be replaced with any other occupation: mühendistir (“is an engineer”); teknisyendir (“is a technician”); öğrencidir (“is a student”).

2. Describing Things

Sentence Components

Describing people, places, things, and so on, is something we do a lot in our daily lives. There’s also an easy Turkish sentence pattern you can use to do this. Here are some examples of how to form Turkish sentences using adjectives.

1- People

Would you like to tell others what you think about the people in your life? Here you are: below are some Turkish sentence patterns you can use:

 TurkishEnglish
1Kızım çok güzel(dir).“My daughter is very pretty.”
2Mark çok akıllı(dır).“Mark is very smart.”
3Rock Hudson çok yakışıklıy.“Rock Hudson was very handsome.”
4Sinemada gördüğümüz çift gerçekten çok mutlu(dur).“The couple we saw at the cinema is really very happy.”
5Bana aldığın hediye benim için çok değerli.“The present you bought me is very precious to me.”
One Girl Pulling Another Girl’s Hair

You can replace the subject with any name or noun, and then you can replace the adjective accordingly.

2- Places

How about describing places in Turkish? You can use the following Turkish sentence patterns when you need to talk to someone about a certain place:

 TurkishEnglish
1Bu ev çok büyük(tür).“This house is very big.”
2Benim odam çok karanlık(tır).“My room is very dark.”
3Bu cadde çok kalabalık(tır).“This street is very crowded.”
4Bahçemiz muhteşemdi.“Our garden was gorgeous.”
5Sana gösterdiğim bina çok eski(dir).“The building I showed you is old.”

3- Things

We use so many different adjectives when talking about objects, food, feelings, etc. These are some examples of the Turkish sentence construction you can use to describe things:

 TurkishEnglish
1Bu kolye çok uzun.“This necklace is very long.”
2Bu koltuk hiç rahat değil(dir).“This armchair is not comfortable at all.”
3Sınav gerçekten zordu.“The exam was really hard.”
4Tatlı çok lezzetliydi.“The dessert was delicious.”
5Dün aldığın gömlek çok şık.“The shirt you bought yesterday is very trendy.”

3. Possession and Ownership

We frequently talk about what we have or what we own. Here are some examples of the Turkish language sentence structures for talking about possession and ownership:

 TurkishEnglish
1Büyük bir ailem var.“I have a big family.”
2Bir evim ve iki arabam vardı.“I had a house and two cars.” (“I owned a house and two cars.”)
3Hiç vaktim yok.“I don’t have any time.”
4Senin beğendiğin o kitap bende yok.“I don’t have that book you liked.”
5Alışveriş merkezine yürüme mesafesinde bir ofisim var.“I have an office within walking distance of the shopping center.”

4. Expressing “Want”

In our daily lives, we often talk about the things we want or the activities we want to do. Following are some Turkish sentence patterns that will help you express what you want (and what you don’t want):

 TurkishEnglish
1Bir fincan kahve istiyorum.“I want a cup of coffee.”
2Bir soru sormak istiyorum.“I want to ask a question.”
3Şu adrese gitmek istiyorum.“I want to go to this address.”
4Seninle konuşmak istemiyorum.“I don’t want to talk to you.”
5Deniz kenarında bir ev istiyorum.“I want to have a house by the seaside.”
6En yakın hastanenin nerede olduğunu öğrenmek istiyorum.“I want to know where the closest hospital is.”
A Man Trying to Decide between an Apple or Cake

Let’s see how you can make variations of this Turkish sentence pattern:

1. In this example, bir fincan kahve (“a cup of coffee”) can be replaced with: bir dilim ekmek (“a slice of bread”); bir şişe şarap (“a bottle of wine”); bir bardak süt (“a glass of milk”).

2. – 5. The object is placed at the beginning, followed by the infinitive form of the verb that describes the action you want to do, and then the conjugated form of the verb istemek (“to want”).

5. Expressing Needs

Knowing how to express your needs in a foreign language is very important, especially in emergencies.

Here are five Turkish sentence patterns about needs that will be useful in your daily conversations:

 TurkishEnglish
1Bir kaleme ihtiyacım var.I need a pen.”
2Bir eczane bulmam lazım.“I need to find a pharmacy.”
3Pratik yapmam gerek.I need to practice.”
4Burada olmana gerek yok.“You don’t need to be here.”
5Ayılmak için bir fincan kahveye ihtiyacım var.I need a cup of coffee to get sober.”

6. Expressing Obligations

There are many times when we need to tell people what we have to do. Here are some useful Turkish sentences for beginners:

 TurkishEnglish
1İşe gitmeliyim.I must go to work.”
2Tuvaleti kullanmak zorundayım.I have to use the restroom.”
3Hemen bir doktor bulmalıyım.I must find a doctor immediately.”
4Sigara içmemelisin.“You mustn’t smoke.”
5Toplantının sonuna dek kalmak zorunda değilsin.You don’t have to stay until the end of the meeting.”

7. Likes and Dislikes

There are so many things (or people) that we like or dislike in life. One way or the other, we frequently talk about these likes and dislikes. Now, let’s see which Turkish sentence patterns can help us express these two feelings.

A Girl Staring in Horror at a Piece of Broccoli
 TurkishEnglish
1Köpekleri çok severim.I like dogs a lot.”
2Seni beğeniyorum.I like you.”
3Türkçe öğrenmeyi seviyorum.I like learning Turkish.”
4Futbol oynamayı sevmiyorum.I don’t like playing soccer.”
5Annemin aldığı elbiseyi beğenmedim.I didn’t like the dress my mother bought.”

8. How to Request Something

Another set of Turkish phrases you need to know are those for making requests. These can take the form of sentences or questions.

1- In sentence form

The following example sentences will show you how to word your requests:

 TurkishEnglish
1Lütfen otur.“Please sit down.”
2Lütfen beni dinle.“Please listen to me.”
3Soruma cevap ver lütfen.“Answer my question, please.”
4Lütfen toplantıya geç kalma.“Please don’t be late to the meeting.”
5Senden sessiz olmanı rica ediyorum.“I’m requesting you to be quiet.”

2- As a question

I’m sure these example sentences will give you an idea of how to ask people what you want them to do (or not do).

 TurkishEnglish
1Ayağa kalkabilir misin lütfen?“Can you stand up, please?”
2Işıkları söndürebilir misin lütfen?“Can you turn off the lights, please?”
3Ödevini yapabilir misin lütfen?“Can you please do your homework?”
4Pencereyi kapatabilir misin lütfen?“Can you close the window please?”
5Rica etsem kapıyı açabilir misin lütfen?“May I request you to open the door, please?”

9. Asking for Permission

Here’s how to make Turkish sentences for asking permission:

 TurkishEnglish
1İçeri girebilir miyim?“May I come in?”
2Bir bardak su alabilir miyim lütfen?“May I get a glass of water, please?”
3Telefon numaranı alabilir miyim?“May I get your phone number?”
4Toplantıya katılabilir miyim?“May I join the meeting?”
5Bir soru sorabilir miyim?“May I ask a question?”

10. Question Patterns

Have you ever thought about how many questions you ask a day? I’m pretty sure you haven’t. I haven’t either, but I’m just guessing and the answer is probably “many.” There are “what,” “when,” “where,” “how,” “why,” and other types of questions. In this section, we’ll show you examples of how to form the most commonly used questions.

A Woman Trying to Understand What a Man Is Saying

1- What?

Below are some example questions:

 TurkishEnglish
1Bu nedir?“What is this?”
2Adın ne?“What is your name?”
3Ne oldu?“What happened?”
4Ne dedin?“What did you say?”
5Dün Türk restoranında sipariş ettiğin içecek neydi?“What was the drink you ordered at the Turkish restaurant yesterday?”

2- What Time? / When?

Here are some patterns you can use: 

 TurkishEnglish
1Saat kaç?“What time is it?”
2Saat kaçta geleceksin?“At what time will you come?”
3Toplantı ne zaman?“When is the meeting?”
4Uçak ne zaman kalkacak?“When will the plane take off?”
5Ne zaman gideceksin?“When will you go?”

3- Where?

Below are some examples:

 TurkishEnglish
1Nerelisin?“Where are you from?”
2Tuvalet nerede?“Where is the restroom?”
3Postane nerede?“Where is the post office?”
4Dün işten sonra nereye gittin?“Where did you go after work yesterday?”
5Nerede yemek yemek istersin?“Where would you like to eat?”

4- Other Questions

Here are some more examples for other types of questions: 

 TurkishEnglish
1Havaalanına nasıl gidebilirim?“How can I go to the airport?”
2Bu halı kaç para?“How much is this carpet?”
3Neden sordunuz?“Why did you ask?”
4Kaç tane bilet alacaksın?“How many tickets will you buy?”
5Otobüsten hangi durakta inmeliyim?“At which stop should I get off of the bus?”

11. More Practice with TurkishClass101.com

How does it feel to know at least ten Turkish sentence patterns? Do you think you’ll be able to express your needs, likes, and dislikes better? Will you be able to ask the most pressing questions? I’m sure you’ll do better than you’ve done in the past!

How about doing even better than today? All you need to do is visit TurkishClass101.com and utilize all of our free resources, including our dictionary!

You can also download the app for free and use it wherever you are.

Don’t forget that there’s also MyTeacher, the premium TurkishClass101 service that you can use to practice the Turkish sentence structure and sentence patterns with a private teacher.

Please don’t neglect to share your experience with us about the services offered at TurkishClass101.com!

Happy learning!

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