Learn common verbs in Afrikaans
Verbs in Afrikaans don’t actually conjugate as in other languages. The infinitive, present tense, and imperative are identical for all verbs (except wees and hê) regardless of the subject. Verbs with separable prefixes, such as aan-, op-, toe-, uit-, place this prefix at the end of the sentence in the present and imperative.
|to carry / wear||dra|
|to close / shut||toemaak / sluit|
|to get up||opstaan|
|to know||ken (iemand) / weet (iets)|
The verb to love has some pecularities in Afrikaans. The infinitive is liefhê and so it is conjugated with lief as a separable prefix: Ek het lief. However, is lief is much more commonly used for the present tense: Ek is lief (I love). The past tense (I loved) is ek het lief gehad. If using a personal pronoun or noun, the preposition vir is placed before it. Therefore, I love you is Ek is lief vir jou while I loved you is ek het jou lief gehad. (It is of course possible to say Ek het jou lief in the present tense as well, but it is not as common.)
The past tense is formed by using het and the past participle, which is usually created by adding the prefix ge- to the infinitive. The past participle is placed at the end of the sentence. Verbs beginning with inseparable prefixes, such as be-, er-, her-, ont- and ver-, do not add ge- to form the past participle. This means that there is only form of these verbs; the infinitive, present, imperative and past participle are identical. Verbs beginning with separable prefixes place the ge between the separable prefix and the verb stem.
The future tense uses sal where English uses will and places the infinitive at the end of the sentence. It is also possible to use gaan like in English, to express to be going to + infinitive.
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