By Levi Clancy for Student Reader on

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Absolute state

The absolute state of a noun is the "dictionary state", for example just man or door.



جادەstreet (informal)

شەقامstreet (formal)

رۆژday / daytime

شەوnight / nighttime
shaw (rhymes with now)




Possessive state

These suffixes are used to denote possession.
First-person singularmy-ەکەمکتێبەکەم (my book) / ماڵەکەم (my home)
Second-person singularyour-ەکەتکتێبەکەت (your book) / ماڵەکەت (your home)
Third-person singular singularher / his / its-ەکایکتێبەکای (her / his / its book) / ماڵەکای (her / his / its home)
First-person pluralour-ەکەمانکتێبەکەمان (our book) / ماڵەکەمان (our home)
Second-person pluralyou alls’-ەکەتانکتێبەکەتان (your book) / ماڵەکەتان (your home)
Third-person pluraltheir-ەکەیانکتێبەکەیان (their book) / ماڵەکەیان (their home)

Indefinite state

The indefinite (as, in a man or any/some men) is achieved by adding a suffix to the absolute noun.

The indefinite singular ending is -ێک after a consonant and -یەک after a vowel. The indefinite plural ending is -ان except for two cases: when the word already ends in ا, add -یان; and if a word ends in ە then replace the ە with ان.

پیاو pyaw (man)پیاوێک pyawek (a man)پیاوان pyawan (any/some men)
رۆژ roj (day)رۆژێک rojek (a day)رۆژان rojan (any/some days)
دەرگا darga (door)دەرگایەک dargayek (a door)دەرگایان dargayan (any/some doors)
نامە nama (letter)نامەیەک namayek (a letter)نەمان naman (any/some letters)
There are certain modifiers that always take an indefinite noun.
پیاو pyaw (man)چەند chand (a few)چەند پیاوێک chand pyawek (a few men)
رۆژ roj (day)هەموو hamuu (every)هەموو رۆژێک hamuu rojek (every day)
لاپەرە lapara (page)چ chi (what?)چ لاپەرەیەک chi laparayak (what page?)
لا la (direction)هەر har (each) har layak (each direction)
The -ی زۆر -i zor (a lot of) sentence patterns also uses an indefinite singular.
نان nan (bread)نانێک nanek (a bread)نانێکی زۆر (a lot of bread)
کورد kurd (Kurd)کوردێک kurdek (a Kurd)کوردێکی زۆر kurdek-i zor(a lot of Kurds)
پیاو pyaw (man)پیاوێک pyawek (a man)پیاوێکی زۆر pyawek-i zor (a lot of men)

Definite state

The definite singular is like adding the in English (the man, or the men).

The definite singular ending is –کە after consonants and the vowels و، ی، ێ, and -ەکە after the vowels ە، ا، and ۆ. The definite plural follows the same rule with -کان and -ەکان.

پیاو pyaw (man)پیاوەکە pyawaka (the man)پیاوەکان pyawakan (the men)
کتاوی ktawi (student)کتاویەکە ktawiaka (the student)کتاویەکان ktawiakan (the students)
دێ de (village)دێەکە de'aka (the village)دێەکان de'akan (the villages)
دەرگا darga (door)دەرگاکە dargaka (the door)دەرگاکان dargakan (the doors)
نامە nama (letter)نامەکە namaka (the letter)نامەکان namakan (the letters)

Review: definite and indefinite endings

--no ending means absolute

-ێک-ekindefinite singular

-یێک-yekindefinite singular

-ان-anindefinite plural

-یان-yanindefinite plural

-کە-kadefinite singular

-ەکە-akadefinite singular

-کان-kandefinite plural

-ەکان-akandefinite plural


The demonstrative nouns envelops the absolute singular or indefinite plural.

For a singular demonstrative (this or that) then use the absolute singular with the noun ending ە or (after ە or ا) use the noun ending یە. For a plural demonstrative (these or those) then use the indefinite plural with the noun ending ە.

ئەمamthis / these

یەوawthat / those

یەم ___-ە/یەam ___-a/yaThis / these ___.

ئەو ___-ە/یەaw ___-a/yaThat / those ___.

پیاو pyaw (man)ئەم پیاوە am pyawa (this man)ئەو پیاوە aw pyawa (that man)پیاوان pyawan (any/some men)ئەم پیاوانە am pyawana (these men)ئەو پیاوانە aw pyawana (those men)
کتاوی ktawi (student)ئەم کتاویە am ktawia (this student)یەو کتاویە aw ktawia (that student)کتاویان ktawian (any/some students)ئەم کتاویانە am ktawiana (these students)ئەو کتاویانە aw ktawiana (those students)
There are also demonstrative pronouns.