Date II

Continued from Date I


kış ‘winter’
ilkbahar or bahar ‘spring’
yaz ‘summer’
sonbahar or güz ‘autumn’


Here are the month names in Turkish:
Ocak ‘January’
Şubat ‘February’
Mart ‘March’
Nisan ‘April’
Mayıs ‘May’
Haziran ‘June’
Temmuz ‘July’
Ağustos ‘August’
Eylül ‘September’
Ekim ‘October’
Kasım ‘Novermber’
Aralık ‘December’

Month names in Turkish is a good example of what Ottoman Turkish might have looked like. It is a confusing mixture of languages. A few of them have Turkish origins, Ocak, Ekim, Aralık, a couple are from Latin, Mart, Mayıs, Ağustos, and one from Arabic, Kasım. But the great majority of them are from Sumerian, Assyrian and Babylonian via Levant Arabic, Şubat, Nisan, Haziran, Temmuz, Eylül.
Days of the week

Just like the month names, names for the days of the week in Turkish is a mish mash of terms from Turkish, Arabic and Farsi:

Pazar ‘Sunday’
Pazartesi ‘Monday’
Salı ‘Tuesday’
Çarşamba ‘Wednesday’
Perşembe ‘Thursday’
Cuma ‘Friday’
Cumartesi ‘Saturday’

Date I

The Gregorian calendar is the standard calendar used in Turkey. Hijri (Turkish Hicri) or Islamic Calendar is used mostly in religious and sometimes in historical contexts.

Turkish uses of date and time terminology is very similar to English ones. Thus, generally speaking, most literal translation of English date terms into Turkish should be fine (some exceptions are noted below).

General Date Terms

yüzyıl ‘century’

yıl or sene ‘year’

mevsim ‘season’

ay ‘month’

hafta ‘week’

hafta sonu ‘weekend’

gün ‘day’

yarın ‘tomorrow’

dün ‘yesterday’

Previous or next year, season, month, week and day can be specified by use of geçen ‘past’ and gelecek ‘upcoming’:
gelecek sene ‘next year’

gelecek yaz ‘this summer’

gelecek ay ‘next month’

geçen Nisan ‘last April’

geçen hafta ‘last week’

geçen Cuma ‘last Friday’

Please note that geçen gün translates to ‘the other day’, and not to yesterday.


Years are generally spoken as full numbers, especially in formal contexts. However, just as in English, only the last two digits might also be used in informal speech.
1996 or 96

Turkish equivalents of A.D.(or C.E.) and B.C. (or B.C.E) are M.Ö. (Mîlattan Önce) and M.S. (Mîlattan Sonra), respectively. M.S. is usually not used unless necessary:
M.Ö. 762
M.S. 112

These labels along with ordinals can be used to indicate centuries:
MÖ 5. yüzyıl ‘5th century BC’
When the date consists only of numbers following formats are used: DD/MM/YYYY or DD.MM.YYYY. Please note that this order differs from the American system.
03/04/2019 ‘April 3, 2019’
With month names:
23 Nisan 2013 ‘April 23rd, 2013’

Continued in Date II.

Genitive Case

Variants: -(n)in, -(n)ın, -(n)un and -(n)ün

Genitive marker indicates ownership or relation similar to the English possessive ‘s and of. The possessor is marked with one of four variants of -in:

atın nalı
 horse-GEN horseshoe-ACC
‘horse’s shoe’
kalemin ucu
 pen-GEN tip-ACC
‘tip of the pen’
gölün rengi
 lake-GEN color-ACC
‘color of the lake’
unun fiyatı
 flour-GEN price-ACC
‘price of flour’

When the stem ends with a vowel n is inserted to break up the vowel cluster:

arabanın ‘car’s’
arabanın ‘car’s’
arabanın ‘car’s’


Genitive suffixes for pronouns are similar to the ones used with regular nouns except for the 1st person singular and plural forms:

1 benim ‘my/mine’
2 senin ‘your/yours’
3 onun ‘his/her/its’

1 bizim ‘our/ours’
2 sizin ‘your/yours’
3 onların ‘their/theirs’

Nouns can also be marked for person:

1 evim ‘my house’
2 evin ‘your house’
3 evi ‘his/her/its house’

1 evimiz ‘our house’
2 eviniz ‘your house’
3 evleri ‘their house’

When pronoun is not dropped both the possessor and the possessee can be marked with the possessive marker:
benim evim
1S-POSS house-1S.POSS
‘mine house’

Since the second possessive marker is redundant, it is often dropped in informal speech:

benim ev ileride
1S-POSS house ahead-LOC
‘my house is ahead’

There is no difference between possessive determiners (e.g. my) and pronouns (e.g. mine) in Turkish. So when asked Whose car is this?, one might reply with:
benim ‘mine’
benim araba ‘my car’
benim arabam ‘my car’


Accusative case

Variants: -(y)i, -(y)ı, -(y)u and -(y)ü

Definitive objects take on the accusative case marker -i.
Can inciri yedi
 Can.ABS house.ACC buy.PT
‘Can ate the fig’

The accusative marker -i has four variants based on vowel harmony (If you need a review of the vowels that can appear in suffixes, see Vowel Harmon in Suffixes):.

    Çocuk gülü verdi
child rose.ACC give.PT
‘Child gave the rose’
-i Jane beni gör
Jane 1SG.ACC see.PT
‘Jane saw me’
Duvar rüzgarı kesti
Wall wind.ACC stop.PT
‘Wall stopped the wind’
-u Güneş buzu eritti
Sun ice.ACC melt.PT
‘Sun melted the ice’

When the stem ends with a vowel -y is inserted to break up the vowel cluster:
elma ‘the apple’
soruyu ‘the question’

Nominative Case

Turkish nominative case refers to the citation form of nouns (without any suffixes). Three types of nouns fall under this category:


When the noun is the subject of the sentence, it is unmarked and the citation form is used without any suffixes (some linguists might call these null markers, Ø). This case is usually referred to as the nominative case:
Esra yedi
 Esra-NOM eat-PT
‘Esra ate’


Vocative nouns, too, do not take any suffixes:
Esra, ben geldim
 Esra-VOC 1SG come-PT
‘Esra, I(‘ve) arrived’

Indefinite objects

In addition, indefinite objects are also unmarked or not suffixed in Turkish. We will call these the absolutive case in Turkish:
Esra tavuk yedi
 Esra-NOM chicken eat-PT
‘Esra ate chicken’

In such cases it is the word order that determines the subject and the object of a sentence. Because the nouns are not suffixed under these two roles, any sentence with a single noun in their citation form (without any suffixes) can be interpreted as ambiguous when no context is provided:
tavuk yedi
 chicken eat-PT.3S   or chicken-NOM eat-PT.3S
‘(he/she/it) ate chicken’ or ‘chicken ate’

If you recall from previous lessons, we’ve said that the word order in Turkish is flexible. This is because when the sentence has a definitive object, it is clearly marked, hence its position does not really matter. But consider the indefinite objects discussed in this lesson. In a sentence like Kedi fare kovaladı ‘cat chased mouse’ where neither the subject or the object is marked, word order matters. In this type of sentence, the word order tells us who is doing the chasing and who is being chased. Remember that the natural word order is usually changed for emphasis and as a beginner you should always stick with the natural word order of Turkish (SOV).

Turkish Case Markers

Turkish case markers are morphemes (suffixes) that mark nouns for their grammatical functions (roles). There are six noun cases in Turkish. Five of these cases are marked with suffixes (accusative, genitive, dative, locative and ablative) and the remaining one is not (nominative). These cases can be divided into three groups based on their traditional grammatical functions (in terms of their English counterparts). These cases can express:

Admittedly, I am deviating here from my two main sources on Turkish grammar. Lewis states that there are six noun cases in Turkish and lumps absolutive, nominative and vocative into one. Göksel & Kerslake on the other hand state that there are five “case suffixes”. As we shall see in the next section, although there is no nominative suffix in Turkish (or it is a null marker), nominatives are still marked by using word order (just like English).

Personal (Possessive) Markers

Similar to the English possessive ‘s, Turkish possessives express possession or relationship. However, in Turkish, possessor identification is more explicit in that the possessed must be marked with one of six personal (possessive) suffixes.

All of these suffixes are subject to rounding harmony except the third person plural suffix. In addition, most of these suffixes will drop their initial vowel to avoid vowel cluster when attached to a stem ending with a vowel. However, because the only sound in third person singular suffix is a vowel, it cannot be dropped. In these situations -s is inserted before the suffix to avoid a vowel cluster.

After consonants

1S -im -üm -ım -um
2S -in -ün -ın -un
3S -i -u
1P -imiz -ümüz -ımız -umuz
2P -iniz -ünüz -ınız -unuz
3P -leri -ları
After vowels

1S -m
2S -n
3S -si -sü -sı -su
1P -miz -müz -mız -muz
2P -niz -nüz -nız -nuz
3P -leri -ları