Lesson 7A. Gender and Person combinations.

Sus̲h̲mā Nāḍkarṇī from Australia, had a very interesting question to ask.
What subject form does one use, तौ or ते, if you want to say ,"They two go, " AND, if one person is a man and the other a woman?
Okey Dokey, here is what happens -
(By the way, a subject is the one who performs the action in a sentence.)

NOTE: There are two ways in which - and - is added in a sentence.
• List all the objects and add after the last listed object. For example:
The cat, dog, elephant, mouse play. This is the most common usage and is THE PREFERRED one while conversing.
•Put the in between all listed objects. For example: The cat dog elephant mouse play.
Musical, but a mouthful!!! File this usage, correct but rare, away in your memory bank.

Back to Sus̲h̲mā's query.
• When the two are a man and a woman, the Masculine form of the pronoun always takes the preference. So one can say तौ गच्छतः ।



For all the feminists out there, there's a way out. Say instead --- सः सा च गच्छतः ।



रामः सीता च नमतः । The dual form of the verb is used to match with the two subjects. Gottit?



रामः सीता लक्ष्मणः च नमन्ति । The plural form of the verb with more than two subjects.
• Sometimes one may come across a sentence like. " In him neither cleanliness, nor character nor truth exists." Even though the sentence contains three subjects, naturally the verb form HAS to be singular. तस्मिन् न शौचं न आचारः न च सत्यम्  अस्ति। (अस्+ति) अस् the root form meaning 'be'.



What if you have subjects from two or three different पुरुष-s ?
In such a case, use the dual or the plural form of the verb (depending on the number of subjects) and give preference to the उत्तमपुरुषः  first, then to the मध्यमपुरुषः and last of all to the प्रथमपुरुषः ।
For example-
1. त्वम् अहं च गच्छावः । Since there are two people, use the dual form of the verb. Since उत्तमपुरुषः features in the sentence, use the dual form of the verb for the उत्तमपुरुषः ।
2. रामः त्वम् अहं च गच्छामः ।Plural form AND उत्तमपुरुषः ।
3. रामः त्वं च गच्छथः । Dual And मध्यमः पुरुषः  ।
4. ते त्वं च गच्छथ । Plural And मध्यमः पुरुषः ।




The verb matches the subject that you place last in your sentence.
अहं वा त्वं वा गच्छसि। त्वं वा अहं वा गच्छामि। अहं वा ते वा गच्छन्ति । (Yup, वा prefers to be between all the words and at the end of the list ....he insists on making his presence felt!)
I must thank Sus̲h̲mā for her question. This got me a reading and a referring again. This kind of interaction builds a quicker, greater and a very 'useful understanding' of the language, don't you think? Everybody benefits. All questions are welcome. Looking forward to active participation from all of you.
And a very, 'G'dai to you mate!'


                                                                                 We proceed to Lesson 7B next


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