Turkish/Future Tense

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Future tense is used to express future in Turkish. Turkish future tense is the equivalent of be going to and will.

Formation in written language[edit | edit source]

Affirmative - Olumlu[edit | edit source]

The suffixes -ecek or -acak (according to the vowel harmony) and the personal ending are added to the verb stem. The "k" in the suffixes become a "ğ" before the 1st personal endings:

Verb stem (+ buffer letter –y if the verb is ending in a vowel) + appropriate form of ecek + personal ending
verb inflection • future tense
gel
ben geleceğim I will come biz geleceğiz we will come
sen geleceksin you will come siz geleceksiniz you will come
o gelecek he/she/it will come onlar gelecekler they will come
verb inflection • future tense
koş
ben koşacağım I will run biz koşacağız we will run
sen koşacaksın you will run siz koşacaksınız you will run
o koşacak he/she/it will run onlar koşacaklar they will run


Negative - Olumsuz[edit | edit source]

Negative verb stem (verb-me/ma-), auxiliary consonant y (it is used to establish a connection between two vowels), the suffixes -ecek or -acak (according to the vowel harmony) and the personal ending are added to the verb stem. The "k" in the suffixes become a "ğ" before the 1st personal endings:

Verb stem + appropriate form of me + buffer letter –y + appropriate form of ecek + personal ending
verb inflection • future tense
gel
gelmemek
ben gelmeyeceğim I will not come biz gelmeyeceğiz we will not come
sen gelmeyeceksin you will not come siz gelmeyeceksiniz you will not come
o gelmeyecek he/she/it will not come onlar gelmeyecekler they will not come
verb inflection • future tense
koş
koşmamak
ben koşmayacağım I will not run biz koşmayacağız we will not run
sen koşmayacaksın you will not run siz koşmayacaksınız you will not run
o koşmayacak he/she/it will not run onlar koşmayacaklar they will not run

Interrogative - Soru[edit | edit source]

This is a bit complicated. Look at the examples, notice that personal endings for 3rd person plural come before the interrogative particle "mı/mi", while other personal endings come after "mı/mi". Also "mi" changes according to the vowel harmony although it is written as a separate word. If 1st personal ending come after mı/mi, -y- consonant should be added to make a connection between two vowels.

Verb stem (+ appropriate form of me) + appropriate form of ecek     question particle mi + personal ending (personal ending comes before the interrogative particle in 3rd person plural)

Affirmative[edit | edit source]

verb inflection • future tense
gel
ben gelecek miyim will I come biz gelecek miyiz will we come
sen gelecek misin will you come siz gelecek misiniz will you come
o gelecek mi will he/she/it come onlar gelecekler mi will they come
verb inflection • future tense
koş
ben koşacak yım will I run biz koşacak yız will we run
sen koşacak sın will you run siz koşacak sınız will you run
o koşacak  will he/she/it run onlar koşacaklar will they run

Negative[edit | edit source]

verb inflection • future tense
gel
gelmemek
ben gelmeyecek miyim won't I come biz gelmeyecek miyiz won't we come
sen gelmeyecek misin won't you come siz gelmeyecek misiniz won't you come
o gelmeyecek mi won't he/she/it come onlar gelmeyecekler mi won't they come
verb inflection • future tense
koş
koşmamak
ben koşmayacak yım won't I run biz koşmayacak yız won't we run
sen koşmayacak sın won't you run siz koşmayacak sınız won't you run
o koşmayacak  won't he/she/it run onlar koşmayacaklar won't they run

Formation in colloquial language[edit | edit source]

While it is perfectly legibile to pronounce the future tense as it is written, this ending is often pronounced very differently in spoken language and in texting. This form of the ending is considerably more complicated than the written form, so it is completely acceptable to skip this part for a new learner.

Verbs ending in consonants[edit | edit source]

When the verb ends with a consonant, the first a/e in -acak/ecek drops, and the c respects consonant harmony, becoming -cak/cek/çak/çek.

döncek It will turn
kalcak It will stay
çek It will drink
çak It will open

Verbs ending in vowels[edit | edit source]

When the verb ends in a vowel, if the vowel is a/e, undergoes vowel narrowing, and becomes ı/i/u/ü. Meanwhile the a/e in the ending drops, but the y is retained, becoming -ycak/ycek.

yiycek It will eat
uzıycak It will extend
dönycek It will drink

Personal endings[edit | edit source]

Similar to -yor, the ğ in the ending is often dropped, and the question particle comes after the personal ending.

içmek
ben çem I will drink
sen çen mi Will you drink?
o çek he/she will drink
biz çez mi Will we drink?
siz çeniz mi Will you drink?
onlar çek(ler) they will drink

Usage[edit | edit source]

In Turkish, we have a lot of ways about talking about the future. Even though -acak/ecek is the default tense we use while talking about the future, both the Aorist (-ar/er/ır/ir/ur/ür) and the Present (-yor) may be used instead, and it is important to learn the distinctions between these tenses.

Present Tense vs Future Tense[edit | edit source]

Similar to English, -yor may be used to talk about scheduled or planned events in the future.

  • Yarın sinemaya gidiyoruz. We are going to the cinema tomorrow.
  • Tren 15 dakikaya kalkıyor. The train is leaving in 15 minutes.

Using the Present Tense here also shows confidence from the speaker that the event will take place as planned. Compare:

  • Ne zaman sinemaya gideceğiz? When will we go to the cinema?
  • Ne zaman sinemaya gidiyoruz? When are we going to the cinema?

In the second example, the speaker is sure that there is a plan to go to the cinema, and just wants to learn when it is. On the other hand, there isn't a set time to go to the cinema in the second example, and the speaker wants to determine it now.

Aorist[edit | edit source]

While talking about predictions, assumptions or hypotheticals, we use the Aorist instead of the Future.

  • Senden iyi öğretmen olur. You'd make a good teacher.
  • Deprem bizim evimizi etkilemez. Earthquakes won't effect our house.

Compare:

  • Yarın yağmur yağmayacak. It won't rain tomorrow
  • Yarın yağmur yağmaz. I don't think it will rain tomorrow.

In the first example, the speaker is sure that it won't rain tomorrow, maybe they have seen it in the weather forecast, or maybe they are stressing that they are sure that it won't rain. On the other hand, the speaker doesn't beleive it will rain, but isn't completely sure about it.

  • Yarın kalemini veririm. I'll return your pencil tomorrow.
  • Yarın kalemini vereceğim. I'll return your pencil tomorrow.

When used in the first person, the Aorist implies a commitment or promise, while the Future implies certainty. In the second example, the speaker has already checked if they can return the pencil tomorrow, and is sure that they can return it, and thus uses the Future Tense to present it as a fact. Meanwhile the first example implies that the speaker will try their best to return the pencil, but isn't sure if there will be any obstacles preventing them.


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