Past Simple verbs in Persian

The structure of past simple verbs in Persian is very similar to present simple verbs.
In order to generate a past simple verb in Persian, we are taking steps introduced in this lesson.

Please note that in Past tenses, we need to use Past Tense root of the verb.

  1. Tense prefix (WHEN?)
  2. Past Simple tense has no Tense Prefix. It means that the verb starts with Past Tense root.

  3. Past tense root (WHAT?)
  4. Making past tense root in Persian is very easy.

    All infinitives in Persian, end in /an/ (ن). Not to mention that the letter “a”, is a vowel and is not an actual letter in Persian script.

    All you have to is, drop N from the end of the infinitive and you will have the Past tense root.


    Infinitive: To Eat /xordan/ خوردن

    Past tense root: /xord/ خورد

  5. Person suffix

Introduced in this lesson

Exception: Singular Third person does not take its Person’s suffix (i.e. “D”).

All infinitives in Persian end in either /DaN/ or /TaN/, while majority of them end in /DaN/. It means that if the Singular Third person’s suffix was applied to Past Simple verb, the verb would be:

/xordad/ خوردد

The example above illustrates that the same letter /d/ (د) would be repeated at the end of the verb. Repetitive letters do not sound very nice in Persian language, and possibly due to this hypothesis, the repetitive letter of /d/ has been dropped in order to make the verb easier to be pronounced.


(Right to Left) ←

Tense Prefix Tense Root Person Suffix Verb
خورد م خوردم
خورد ی خوردی
خورد خورد
Tense Prefix
Tense Root Person Suffix Verb
خورد یم خوردیم
خورد ید خوردید
خورد ند خوردند

(Left to Right) →

Tense Prefix Tense Root Person Suffix Verb
xord am xordam
xord i xordi
xord xord
Tense Prefix Tense Root Person Suffix Verb
xord im xordim
xord id xordid
xord and xordand

Can you do the same for these verbs:
To drink: /nušidan/ past tense root: nušid
To see: /didan/ past tense root: ?
To read: /xāndan/ past tense root: ?
To say: /goftan/ past tense root: ?

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