This tutorial was written by Ömer & Mehmet Sener. If you are interested in authentic uses of language, go to Turkish realia for photos taken in Turkey.
Present Tense of Verbs in Turkish
The Turkish Present Tense covers the uses of the Present Continuous Tense in English. Furthermore, it also covers some uses of the Simple Present Tense, especially in the oral language. It is constructed by adding the suffixes above to the verb stem. Yet, a vowel that connects the verb stem to the suffix is added in between, following the rules of Vowel Harmony. The construction is the same with the suffix “to be”.
|-yorum||I am ___ing||-yoruz||we are ___ing|
|-yorsun||you are ___ing (sing.)||-yorsunuz||you are ___ing (plural)|
|-yor||he / she / it is ___ing||-yorlar||they are ___ing|
If the last vowel (or the only vowel) of the verb stem is a or ı, then the vowel is ı, making –ıyor.
açmak “to open” aç- >> aç + ı + yor >> açıyor “he/she/it is opening”
If the last vowel of the verb stem is o or u, then the vowel is u, making –uyor.
olmak “to become, to happen” ol- >> ol + u + yor >> oluyor “it is happening”
If the last vowel of the verb stem is e or i, then the vowel is i, making –iyor.
içmek “to drink” iç- >> iç + i + yor >> içiyor “he/she/it is drinking”
If the last vowel of the verb stem is ö or ü, then the vowel is ü, making –üyor.
gülmek “to laugh” gül- >> gül + ü + yor >> gülüyor “he/she/it is laughing”
Verb stems ending in a vowel either drop this vowel to avoid vowel clusters,
anlamak “to understand” anla- >> anl + ı + yor >> anlıyor “he/she/it understands”
Or the final vowel mingles with the vowel and they become one. This happens if the final vowel is u, ü, ı or i.
okumak “to read / to study” oku- >> ok + u + yor >> okuyor “he/she/it is reading”
In all cases the ending –yor and the personal suffixes always remain the same in all verbs in the Present Tense.
Ne yapıyorsun? What are you doing?
Şimdi uyuyor. He/she/it is sleeping now.
Yunus Emre’yi tanıyorum. I know Yunus Emre.
Hemen geliyorum. I’m coming right now.
The verbs gitmek (to go) and etmek (to do) go through a consonant mutation when conjugated. The final consonant of the verb stem t softens to d.
git- >> gid + i + yor >> gidiyor “he/she/it is going”
et- >> ed + i + yor >> ediyor “he/she/it is doing”
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