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  5. Subjunctives?



I finished the Hindi from English tree on level 1, my goal is to complete all the skill to the maximum. Many thanks for this course, and especially many thanks for the helpful comments from aaditsingh8 and vinay92. You guys and your insightful comments made the learning such a pleasant experience for me! (Any plans for expanding the tree? ;-) )

To get myself more immersed into (for me understandable level of) Hindi, I also started the English from Hindi tree. In the instructions there I came across some verb forms that I was not able to identify at first:

इसे हिन्दी में लिखें

चर्चा करें

सही मतलब को चुनें

आगे बढ़ें

जवाब देखें

The missing subject and -en ending attached to the verb root confused me. After frantic googling I figured out those might be subjunctives (that are not taught in the Hindi from English tree) and express (apart from other uses) mild imperatives or suggestions. Is my understanding correct? What's the deal with the missing subject?

EDIT: layout changed

January 22, 2020



The subjunctive is used to express possibilities, conditions and suggestions. For example, the subjunctive forms of the verb करना are करें (with हम, आप and plural subjects), करूँ (with मैं ), करे (with तू and singular third person subjects) and करो (with तुम- in this case, it is the same as the imperative form that is used to give out commands). Other verbs take more or less the same forms.

I'll give some examples of usage for the subjunctive

a. कृपया खिड़की बंद करें - It is a suggestion to close the window or a way to let you know that it is necessary to close the window. Compare with the imperative कृपया खिड़की बंद कीजिये that is an outright request (or command if you remove the कृपया-please).
This is the way it's been used in the examples in your post and the missing subject is आप. So, your guess that it is a mild imperative is spot on. Similar to the imperative, the subject is often implied and not explicitly present. Such usage with आप is very formal and you'll encounter this a lot in flight announcements, written instructions etc. Some prestige Hindi dialects use this form exclusively because the imperative is seen as crass and impolite.
You can also use have हम as the implicit subject in this usage. Eg: चलो, खेलें। (Come, Let's play) which is a suggestion that the two of you should go play. Usage with हम is not as formal.

b. अगर वे आमने सामने बात करें तो झगड़ा सुलझ सकता है -' If they talk face to face then the fight can come to an end'. Here it is used to talk about hypothetical scenarios and conditions.

c. हम कल रात क्या करें?- 'What do we do tomorrow night'. Note the difference with the future tense form करेंगे. You do not expect the other person to tell you outright what you both are going to do (as करेंगे seems to imply). You are just asking for opinions and possibilities.


Thanks, vinay92, I knew I could count on you!

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