Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 9 : 11 November 2009
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         K. Karunakaran, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.



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Auxiliary Verbs in Modern Tamil

A. Boologa Rambai, Ph.D.


Auxiliary verbs are the verbs which lose their original syntactic and semantic properties when they collocate with other verbs as auxiliary and signify various grammatical meanings which are the auxiliary meanings of the other verbs in the sentences.


raaman ankee iruntaan           "Rama is there" - Main Verb
raaman ankee vantiruntaan           "Ram has come there" - Auxiliary verb

The verbs which thus become auxiliaries may also function like full verbs elsewhere, resulting in formally being identical but functionally different pairs of verbs. The difference is manifested in their different syntactic distribution and semantic denotation.

The function of an auxiliary in any language is to express the voice, mode, tense or aspect of the action denoted by the main verb of a sentence.

Various Names of Auxiliary

Auxiliary verbs have various names. Walther, 1739, Pope, 1859, Arden 1891, Agesthialingom, 1964, Meenakshisundaram, 1965, Isreal , 1976, Karthikeyani, 1976, Srinivasan, 1976, Joseph, 1981 and Steever, 1983 addressed this auxiliary as auxiliary verbs. Bahl, 1967 termed this as Explicator. Hock, 1974 mentioned this auxiliary as Compound Verbs. Subbarao, 1979 called this as Secondary Verbs. Bhat, 1979 termed this as Vector. Kachru pointed out this as Serial verbs.

Characteristics of Auxiliary Verbs

1. Auxiliary verb always occurs after the main verbs and it is dependent upon the main verbs.


iRaivan ceyya vaittaan           "God made him to do this"
naan payantu pooneen           "I was afraid of that"

2. Most of the auxiliary verbs have PNG markers and negative markers but the modal auxiliary verbs do not have the PNG markers and the negative markers except the Model auxiliary verb maaTTu.


murugan ceytu kaaTTinaan           "Murugan demonstrated it."
inRu mazhai varakkuuDum           "Today the rain may come."
avan vara maaTTaan           "He won't come definitely."

3. Auxiliary verbs come after the verb root of the main verb, infinitive form of the main verb, verbal participle form of the main verb, relative participle form of the main verb, finite verb of the main verb, verbal noun form of the main verb and the participial noun of the main verb and the conditional infinitive form.


puRaa viTu paTTatu           "The pigeon left out"
Verb root

iraaman colla vantaan           "Rama has come for telling this"

kaNNan vantu irukkiRaan           "Kannan has come here already"
Verbal Participle

kaTaikku vantirunta raaman           "Rama who has come to the shop"
Relative Participle

kala vantaaL illai           "Kala who had not come"
Finite Verb

nii varalaam           "You may come"
Verbal Noun

iraamantaan paarttavanaam           "Rama one who saw that"
Participial Noun

geetha paaDip paarttaal teriyum           "If Geetha try to sing then it will be clear"
Conditional Infinitive Form

4. When Auxiliary verbs occur in compound sentences, then the auxiliary may be deleted from the sentences.

naan paarttum irukkiReen: naan keeTTum irukkiReen = naan paarttum
keeTTum irukkiReen. "I had seen; I had heard = "I both seen and heard"

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

Attitude towards Mother Tongue - A Study of the Tribal Students of Orissa | Computer-mediated Communication in a Bilingual Chatroom | Compensation Strategies for Speaking English Adopted by Engineering Students of Tamil Nadu - A Study | Acquisition of English Intransitive Verbs by Urdu Speakers | Community, Culture and Curriculum in the Context of Tribal Education in Orissa, India | Auxiliary Verbs in Modern Tamil | Getting Around 'Offensive' Language | Noun Morphology in Kuki-Chin Languages | A Plea for the Use of Language Portals in Imparting Communication Skills | Advances in Machine Translation Systems | A Comparative Study of the Effect of Explicit-inductive and Explicit-deductive Grammar Instruction in EFL Contexts | Lexical Choice and Social Context in Shashi Deshpande's That Long Silence | The Voice of Servility and Dominance Expressed through Animal Imagery in Adiga's The White Tiger | Phonological Analysis of English Phonotactics of Syllable Initial and Final Consonant Clusters by Yemeni Speakers of English | Effective Use of Language in Communicating News through Political Emergency | Helping the Limited English Proficient Learner Learn the Second Language Effectively through Strategy Instruction | P.S. Sri's The Temple Elephant: A Bestiary with Socio-Political and Spiritual Message | Papers Presented in the All-India Conference on Multimedia Enhanced Language Teaching - MELT 2009 | A Phonological Study of the Variety of English Spoken by Oriya Speakers in Western Orissa - A Doctoral Dissertation | HOME PAGE of November 2009 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

A. Boologa Rambai, Ph.D.
Department of Tamil Language and Translational Studies
Dravidian University
Kuppam - 517 425
Andhra Pradesh, India

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