"Bir adam"

Translation:A man

March 23, 2015



what is the difference between 'adam' and 'erkek' ?


Erkek is used to refer to gender (it can be man and male). Adam is used to refer to physical beings (it can be man or guy).


So erkek means "male" while adam means "man"? :)


Hence also an animal can be erkek, right?


Can you use it for women too? Like a person?


Man" is used more for adult individuals but "male" refers to a gender.

"Adam"daha çok yetişkin bireyler için kullanılır fakat "erkek" genellikle cinsiyet belirtir.


Erkek means male and adam means man :)


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Is there a biblical lineage to "Adam"?


In Hebrew Adam means man, so it may be a borrowing or loan word. A large number of words in Turkish have Arabic and Persian roots even though it is not an Indo-European or an Afro-Asiatic language; Turkish happens to have borrowed a lot of vocabulary from those groups due to its geographical location.


So what exactly about the language is it that classifies it as Altaic/Turkic rather than Indo-European or Semitic if it has those loan words? (I've studied a couple courses in linguistics, but don't quite remember how language families are decided/phylogenized)


There are a couple of things, but basically they must have - 1) a common ancestor, and 2) and share a similar structure or phonology. For example, English has a heavy vocabulary influence from, Latin, Norse, French, and Greek but it is a Germanic language on the IE branch because of its structure and origin.

It was ultimately derived from a branch of Germanic that the Angles, Saxons, Jutes, etc. brought over in the 5th century. You can also still see remnants of Celtic in the grammar (this is disputed still but pretty widely accepted - i.e. the fairly useless word "do" is thought to be a Welsh grammar hang-on) which also makes English different than other Germanic languages but its verb placement and core vocabulary (90%+ of the top 200 most used words are Germanic in origin) securely lock its place in this sub-category.

So Turkish may have borrowed a lot of vocabulary from Persian (Farsi) and Hebrew and Arabic, but at its core it's still very much an Altaic/Turkic tongue. Characteristics that make it such are that is that is has a LOT of agglutination (stringing words together) and its word order is subject-object-verb and vowel harmony (any vowel can be next to any other). Hope this helps!


Thank you - just to make sure, I guess you meant to say that any vowel can't be next to just any other vowel.


Just want to point out here that Altaic is a widely debunked family.


To clarify for readers, "Altaic" is a hypthetical super-grouping of several Asian language families - Turkic (Turkish and relatives), Mongolic (Mongolian and relatives), Tungusic (Manchurian and relatives), and often Japonic (Japanese and relatives) and Korean - as being descendants of the same ancestral proto-language. Yeah, the problem with Altaic is that it's turned out to be very difficult to prove that the similarities between these families are due to shared ancestry, rather than simply due to borrowing features from each other due to geographic proximity. In fact, that's the problem with all manner of superfamily hypotheses the world over. So Altaic has not been accepted as proven yet by most linguists.


Latin often puts the verb at the end, although I was taught in Classical Latin that word order was not essential due to the endings of the subject and object which defined them. Are Latin and Turkish in any way related?


Turkish is not related to Latin. Word order wasn't as important in Old English and Latin and verbs were often placed at the end of sentences. Word order is more important in many modern IE languages as cases and genders have merged over the years.


A few people told me that it is similar to Latin grammar-wise but I think it is just a coincidence. The language has its roots in Central Asia and I was told at school that the closest languages to Turkish are Japanese and Korean.


Persian loans are only %1 with Arabic loans together %7. That's not a huge percentage like you can think they are related to Turkish.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkish_vocabulary#/media/File:TurkishVocabulary.png

Turkic language family should be an independent lang fam by itself.


@heimaey Cases and genders didn't merge in all IE languages - pretty much in all slavic languages word order is not relevant as it is inflection that decides meaning of word.


Is Altaic a valid language family? From what I've read, it is widely seen as discredited.


While these things may be debated, 99% of linguists do not support Altaic. That's about as close as you can get, there is no overarching accepted version of the family.

But, of those that do, the ones without Japanese and Korean are more common. Including those is a fringe of a fringe.


These things are always debated. All linguists never agree at one time. As far as I know today's accepted version of Altaic family consists of Turkic languages, Mongolic languages and Tungusic languages.

Japanese and Korean is sometimes accepted langauge isolates or two language families as 'Japonic' and 'Koreanic'.


Following from what Jim said, the main criterion for classifying languages phylogenetically is a significant amount of shared vocabulary from particular semantic sets - including pronouns, body parts, kinship terms, nature words, basic verbs, basic adjectives, etc. - that are resistant to replacement over time. Shared grammatical irregularities (such as English good/better instead of good/gooder, echoed in German gut/besser) are even better. Shared structural features, such as word order or gender, are OK, but by themselves are insufficient, since there are only so many types that occur and two randomly-selected languages are bound to share at least some of these features. So, by these criteria, Turkish is classified with various Central Asian languages such as Azerbaijani, Uzbek, and Kazakh, in a family called Turkic, rather than to the languages of Europe or the Middle East. However, Turkish has been heavily influenced by Arabic, Persian, and French, so it now contains many words from these languages, including "adam" - a borrowing from Arabic ;)


Aadmi = man in urdu


An in Persian we use Aadam for Human. Mard (man), Zan (woman)


If there are no articles - what is "bir'?


From the notes, it's literally "one" and is sometimes used like an indefinite article. There's a similar construct in Hindi.


To add to my previous answer, if you're translating from Turkish, and it's just "adam" it could be either "a man" or "the man" in English. This way, you know precisely what to translate to in English.


What's the sound of r here? I feel like it is pronounced differently when it's followed by a vowel.


"R" is always pronounced as in "Roman". Not soft like British pronunciation of the letter and slightly stronger than the American pronunciation. It is never silent.

In this example it is added to the second word like "Bi-radam".


we say "girls" and "boys", not "guy". "Hey, you guys" might refer either to females or males. A girl might in slang refer to her boyfriend as "my guy". Adam means boy, not guy. That's what I think.


Neden konusmuyonuz


Is 'adam' informal use, as 'guy' is in English?


No, it's perfectly normal in formal Turkish too. Main issue here is the context. You just need to get used to it.

I think we use ERKEK more when we need to emphasize the gender.

I will give a few examples:

Dışarıda bir ADAM var. -- There is a MAN outside.

Daha fazla ADAM lazım mı? -- Do you need more MEN? (for that job/team etc.)

ERKEKLER tuvaleti -- MEN's toilet

bir ERKEK kurbağa -- a MALE frog

Kadın-ERKEK ilişkileri -- Female-MALE relationships

BEYLER/ERKEKLER bu tarafa lütfen -- GENTLEMEN/MEN this way please

ERKEK kuaförü -- MEN's hairdresser


Is there an informal equivalent in Turkish to 'guy'? I would never use this in formal British English. Thank you for your explanation. It's very helpful.


I don't think there is an equivalent, but adam is the closest one, however there are a few words which could be used in similar contexts. As far as I know, "GUYS" is used for mixed gender groups in English as in "Hi guys!".

"Merhaba millet" is a very casual way of saying "Hi guys" and it literally means "Hello nation/people". Another one is "Selam gençler" (Hi youngsters) or "Selam gençlik" (hi youth).

"ARKADAŞLAR" (friends) is also very similar to "guys". You can call out to a group of peers using this. If the group is made of only boys you can call them "BEYLER" (gents) in a casual way.

"HERİF" means "man" but it has a negative connotation so I would avoid using it until you are comfortable with your Turkish skills. You can hear something like that:

Şu herif seni arıyor. -- That man is looking for you. (You can tell the person talking to you doesn't like or approve that man, or they are just being funny.)


If you want to call a group of men you could say , "Hey beyler" i think it exactly equivalent of "Hey guys", bey means "gentleman", but we use it both formally and informally. To inform you cant use it for girls. "Bey" is masculine.

If there are both girls or boys in a group you can use "Selam millet" like "Hi folks, guys etc."

Also millet means "nation". But you can use it informally.


One human is also true !!!!!!!!


No it is not. "adam" has gender implications, which "human" does not. "human" in Turkish is "insan"


Sincerely hope that 'humane' is not 'insane' then!


Bir also an and a


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