Persian: using the indefinite enclitic / article "i" with adjectives ending in -i

Shmurger

New Member
Norwegian
The English sentence a/some big house can be translated as xane-ye bozorg-i, but what if the adjective already ends in -i?
Would a/some blue house be translated as xane-ye abi-i or just xane-ye abi? Would an/some Iranian man be mard-e irani-i or just mard-e irani?
 
  • Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    There is an alternate method as well where the suffix is attached to the noun.

    mard-ii Iraanii

    xaane-ii aabii
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Please bear in mind that:
    کتاب سفید means: the white book
    Whereas:
    کتابی سفید means a/some white book

    So مرد ایرانی the Iranian man and مردی ایرانی an Iranian man, same applies to خانه & آبی

    If you intend to say:

    1 ‘the blue house that…’ you have to add -i, and say: خانه‌ی آبی‌ای که دیدم، similarly مرد ایرانی‌ای که آنجا بود

    2 ‘there was a blue house there that…’ you say ‘خانه‌ای آبی در آنجا بود که
     
    Last edited:

    Shmurger

    New Member
    Norwegian
    Thanks for the reply :)

    1 ‘the blue house that…’ you have to add -i, and say: خانه‌ی آبی‌ای که دیدم، similarly مرد ایرانی‌ای که آنجا بود
    I'm a bit confused by this. I thought -i made things indefinite, but this sentence is definite, right?

    Another question: How would you translate Tehran is an Iranian city into farsi?
     
    Last edited:

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    So Tehran shahr-e irani-i ast would be incorrect?
    I am afraid yes.

    You could also say تهران شهری ایرانیست where شهری here is equivalent to یک شهر which makes it the same as my answer in post #5, except this one is very bookish.
     

    Shmurger

    New Member
    Norwegian
    Would Tehran shahr-e bozorg-i ast also be incorrect?
    (Sorry for asking so many questions, I'm just trying to understand this correctly)
     

    Aryamp

    Senior Member
    Persian
    I'm a bit confused by this. I thought -i made things indefinite, but this sentence is definite, right?
    There are many types of final ی or "i" sound in Persian. In relative clauses, it can turn the clause into a restrictive relative clause. See my post here.

    Normally I'd try to avoid having two adjacent "i" sounds, especially in writing. As you've noticed it's a bit awkward to pronounce, so it sounds better to write "mardi irani" as suggested above, unless there's a good reason not to do so. Then you have to put up with marde irani-i.
    Another question: How would you translate Tehran is an Iranian city into farsi?

    In English it's normal to say things like the American president, the Chinese capital, etc. But in Persian it would sound very unusual. So your sentence would normally be translated to "Tehran shahri dar Iran ast". Unless you really mean to describe Tehran as a city with Iranian qualities like Iranian vibe, etc. In that case you could say "Tehran shahri Irani ast" or "Tehran Shahr-e Irani-i ast" but again the latter sounds inelegant especially in writing. But I can imagine someone saying something like "Vancouver xeili shahr-e irani-i ye". In colloquial tone it doesn't sound as bad.
    Would Tehran shahr-e bozorg-i ast also be incorrect?
    It's correct.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Unless you really mean to describe Tehran as a city with Iranian qualities like Iranian vibe, etc. In that case you could say "Tehran shahri Irani ast" or "Tehran Shahr-e Irani-i ast" but again the latter sounds inelegant especially in writing. But I can imagine someone saying something like "Vancouver xeili shahr-e irani-i ye". In colloquial tone it doesn't sound as bad.
    I agree, as I read "Tehran Shahr-e Irani-i ast" I also sensed its 'unintentional' meaning but that wasn't the answer to the specific question but as you have explained it, it clearly shows there's a place for it without confusion.
     
    Last edited:

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Normally I'd try to avoid having two adjacent "i" sounds, especially in writing. As you've noticed it's a bit awkward to pronounce, so it sounds better to write "mardi irani" as suggested above, unless there's a good reason not to do so. Then you have to put up with marde irani-i.
    mardi irani can not replace marde irani-i under any circumstance because they mean different things:
    So مرد ایرانی the Iranian man and مردی ایرانی an Iranian man, same applies to خانه & آبی

    So I don't see how you can avoid using marde irani-i in the right context e.g. مرد ایرانی‌ای که آنجا بود especially in day-to-day language, including fully informal and polite informal.

    I give another example:
    first person: .....آلودگی هوا فقط مسئله تهران نیست
    second person: ...درست میفرمایید ولی آلودگی‌ای که در تهران است
     

    Aryamp

    Senior Member
    Persian
    mardi irani can not replace marde irani-i under any circumstance because they mean different things:
    من مرد ایرانی ای با این مشخصات نمی شناسم = من مردی ایرانی با این مشخصات نمی شناسم
    Grammatically they might not exactly be the same but practically they mean the same thing. I agree though they're not always interchangeable. The choice of ای-ای avoidance strategy depends on the context.

    So I don't see how you can avoid using marde irani-i in the right context e.g. مرد ایرانی‌ای که آنجا بود especially in day-to-day language, including fully informal and polite informal.

    I give another example:
    first person: .....آلودگی هوا فقط مسئله تهران نیست
    second person: ...درست میفرمایید ولی آلودگی‌ای که در تهران است
    آن مرد ایرانی که آنجا بود or re-arrange the sentences so you end up with a better structure آنجا مردی ایرانی بود که ... in informal speech it's much more likely to simply say ...یارو ایرونیه instead of all that 😁
    ولی آلودگی هوایی که در تهران است
    ولی نوع آلودگی تهران ...

    etc.
    possibilities are endless. It really depends on the sentence and the surrounding context. It's not wrong to say ایرانی ای but it's not used that often, especially in writing as I said. Google search results also show that مردی/زنی ایرانی که is more common than مرد/زن ایرانی ای که even in the same context, regardless of grammatical nuances. In case of مرد آمریکایی ای it's even more obvious that people avoid writing it like that, it's just too much.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Yes, Google search confirms this 'avoidance' but that, I believe, shows the view amongst academics that day-to-day speech is somehow just not correct, I don't know any other language in the world that has such a wide gap between its day-to-day and its formal formats.

    I always wonder who came up with formal version of any language, knowing a little about how languages develop or that they were not sent to us on stone tablets, however this is a wide debate so let's leave it. But the point is, by avoiding certain structures in the formal language we are making this gap (vs. colloquial) wider and that can not be good for Persian as a foreign language to learn, there's no suggestion that every colloquial word should be incorporated into the formal language but structures shouldn't be re-arranged just to avoid the colloquial version which are more familiar & inherently correct.

    You can not stop people saying مرد آمریکایی ای and can not certainly get them to say it in any other way that's formal which as you said "Grammatically they might not exactly be the same..", so this 'gap' widens, & at best, it is maintained

    But there's hope, more and more colloquial Persian is produced in text form in song lyrics, personal conversations, interviews etc. and soon the above search may produce equal numbers of each and...
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Yes, Google search confirms this 'avoidance' but that, I believe, shows the view amongst academics that day-to-day speech is somehow just not correct, I don't know any other language in the world that has such a wide gap between its day-to-day and its formal formats.
    Arabic perhaps. No one, I am told, speaks Aljazeera Arabic. Yet, I don't believe my English is much different, if at all, from BBC English.
     
    Top