"Ben genç bir baykuşum."

Translation:I am a young owl.

March 23, 2015

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The adjective being before the "a(n)" indefinite article freaks me out!


It strange a thing is.


I cope by imagining it translating to "I'm young of an owl."


A note on the placing of "bir":

A well-known Turkish song goes:

...Ben bir ceviz ağacıyım Gülhane Parkı'nda... (I am a walnut tree in Gülhane Park)

bir comes right before ceviz ağacı here because "walnut tree" is a compound noun and its own thing. But in the sentence above, genç baykuş is not a thing, genç is just an adjective. That's why bir comes after genç.

If the sentence was "I am a Boreal owl", we could translate it as: Ben bir paçalı baykuşum. Because paçalı baykuş is an owl species.

There are of course exceptions to this rule, especially in poetry. Most common construction is ...bir garip... (=a poor)

Ben bir garip Keloğlanım (="I am a poor bald boy," from an Anatolian folktale.)


Does it matter where "bir" is put? Couldn't one say, "ben bir genç baykusum"


You should put it after genç.


what if i said "ben bir genç baykuşum" ?


It would be wrong.


Thank you. Would it just be wrong or would it mean something different ?


You're welcome an it is just wrong. People would understand what you say though. In old language there is such a thing as putting 'bir' before adjective but is not in use anymore.


In Hungarian we have something similar... "Én fiatal egy bagoly vagyok" - Én-ben, genc-fiatal, bir-egy, baykusum-bagoly vagyok. It is something like saying "I am kind of a young owl." The emphasis is on "fiatal-young", and this way the sentence expresses more than just me being a young owl. For example: I'm kind of a young owl, but capable of... you know... things... o_O :) I wonder if it works similarly in Turkish...?


So if it was just "I am young" then "young" would get conjugated (makes sense) and when you add an object "young OWL," then "young" stays unconjugated and the object gets conjugated? Does that apply to all similar sentences?


"Young owl" would be genç baykuş. Both of them stay unconjugated.


If it was just "I am young," it would be "Ben gencum" right?


"Ben gencim". Note vowel harmony.


Right, whoops.


Why is it baykuşum?


Because the English says "I am an owl".

-um here is the ending for "I am".


So, the siffix (a marker of the verb be) should be always added to the last word (I mean the predicative) in a sentence, yes?


If the predicate is a noun or an adjective, then yes, the "to be" suffix gets added to that.


Alex is telling us his secret little by little


Can't we say ''bir'' before ''genç''?


Queenbaka, sure, your brain is more flexibal than a language. In Turkish the article "bir" is ALWAYS after the adjective which modifies a noun, between adjective and noun.


If before "genç" were at least a word preceding "genç" it would be okay, but never put "bir" before "genç" next to each other.


Aha Duo is talking about himself. At first I was confused about the meaning.


Why we can't say Ben genc bir baykus . i know baykus is an owl . What is the role of the suffix "um" in baykus???


What is the role of the suffix "um" in baykus?

It means "am" as in "I am a young owl".

Just as you cannot say "I — a young owl" in English, so you cannot say Ben genç bir baykuş in Turkish: the verbal element is missing.

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