होना honā and the Subject Pronoun

Hindi makes regular use of both a subject pronoun (I, you, he she, it, etc.) and verbal complement, होना honā “to be”1. The following chart illustrates them together (there should be agreement in their usage, of course):

Singular Plural
Person Subject होना Subject होना
1 Person मौं maĩ हूँ hū̃ हम ham हैं haĩ
2 Person2 तुम tum हो ho
2 Person2 तू है hai आप āp हैं haĩ
3 Person (Far)3 वह vo4 है hai वे ve हैं haĩ
3 Person (Near)3 यह yeh/yehe5 है hai ये ye हैं haĩ
  1. होना is used in a number of other idiomatic expressions, most notably possession.
  2. The second person singular of the complement and subject pronoun are only used in very informal settings – with children, pets, close family. When dealing with the singular, तुम हो would be used with a colleague or friend, while आप हैं is used with a stranger or superior.
  3. The third person has separate forms for subjects (and verbal agreement) that are near or far away.
  4. Note that the pronunciation, “vo” does not match the written form, which would indicate “vah”.
  5. Note that the pronunciation, “yeh” or “yehe” does not match the written form, which would indicate “yah”.
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About George

I'm interested in theology, languages, translation and various sorts of fermentation.
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One Response to होना honā and the Subject Pronoun

  1. Pingback: Addenda to Subject Pronouns in Hindi « σφόδρα – exceedingly

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