Persian: using a noun without reference to its number

Sarmed Ahmed Usmani

New Member
Urdu
Hi

If a father wanted to encourage his daughter to watch less TV and read books instead (without referring to any specific books) would he say كتاب خوان or كتاب را خوان or كتابها خوان or كتابهارا خوان?

Thank you
 
  • Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    So, would كتاب خواندم ديروز mean "I read a book yesterday." or "I read books yesterday."?
     

    Aryamp

    Senior Member
    Persian
    So, would كتاب خواندم ديروز mean "I read a book yesterday." or "I read books yesterday."?
    It means "I did book-reading"! (we don't know how many books).This sentence doesn't sound idiomatic in English though, an English speaker would say "I read a book" or "I read a few books" or something similar. Persian and English are not comparable in terms of the use of determiners. A zero-article noun and a verb can be seen as a compound verb. So روزنامه خواندن is like "to do newspaper-reading".
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    So, would كتاب خواندم ديروز mean "I read a book yesterday." or "I read books yesterday."?

    Firstly, ديروز at the end adds stress on it, this is usually an answer to a question like: "دیروز چکار کردی؟", so the questioner may only be interested in what you did yesterday.

    A normal statement would be: دیروز کتاب خواندم - I read a book/books/my book(s), so until you add a number/another determiner or more context, that sentence can mean all those options in English,

    So use the following or variations of, to make it clear:
    دیروز کتابم را خواندم - I read my book yesterday (specific book)
    دیروز کتاب ها را خواندم - I read the books yesterday (specific books)
    دیروز یک/سه کتاب خواندم - I read 1/3 book(s) yesterday (nonspecific book(s))
     
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