A list of common expressions featuring the postposition ko.

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, 0000-00-00


Snell, Rupert

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Hindi-Urdu Flagship




The principal use of ko is to mark an object. In mE# ram ko btaËÅga “I’ll tell Ram”, ram is said to be the DIRECT object because the action of telling is done to him directly. In mE# yh toh¿Pa ram ko dUÅga “I’ll give this present to Ram”, ko means “to” and is used to mark the INDIRECT object ram; the direct object is yh toh¿Pa and does not take ko. Another use of ko is to pinpoint days of the week or times of day: gu<var ko “on Thursday”, subh ko “in the morning”, xam ko “in the evening”, rat ko “at night” (but idn me# “in the daytime”). So much for the primary uses of ko. The purpose of this handout is to list some of the very numerous constructions and expressions in which ko has a different function. While expressions such as “I have a cold” or “I like bananas” have “I” as subject in English, in Hindi this “logical subject” takes ko (muJko) and the cold or the banana becomes the grammatical subject, with which the verb agrees (¿jukam hE): muJko ¿jkam hE “I have a cold”, muJko kele psMd hE# “I like bananas”. Each of these expressions can refer to either a male or a female, because the pronoun has no gender. And muJko can of course be replaced by its synonym muJe. Familiarise yourself with this list by reading it aloud, and try some substitution exercises by changing the “I” to other pronouns and tenses — “She has a cold, they had a cold”, etc. Then read the note at the end.

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