Adding Suffixes

Adding suffixes

Adding suffixes is one of the most important things in Thamil grammar. The rules for adding suffixes will be used in a large majority of the remaining lessons. The rules presented below aren't all the rules, but they are the more commonly used ones.

suffix addition rules
  1. If the suffix begins in a vowel sound and the word ends in an இ, ஈ, ஏ, or ஐ, insert a ய் in between.
  2. If the suffix begins in a vowel sound and the word ends in an அ, ஆ, ஊ, ஒ, ஓ, or ஔ, insert a வ் in bewteen.
  3. If the suffix begins in a vowel sound and the word ends in an உ sound, and...
    1. If the word is made of 2 short letters, insert a வ் in between.
    2. If the word is not made of 2 short letters, drop the -உ and add the suffix.
  4. If the suffix begins in a vowel sound and the word is made of 2 short letters, with the 2nd letter being a consonant, then double the 2nd letter and add the ending.

  • Otherwise, join the word and suffix as they are.

So far, we've come across 2 instances of adding suffixes. The first time was forming a question. Not coincidentally, each sentence ended in a consonant, so the last rule was used. Then came present tense verbs, where a verb suffix was added to "verb root + கிற்/க்கிற்". Since கிற் and க்கிற் both end in a consonant, the last rule was used again.

These rules for adding suffixes will always apply unless otherwise specified.

Compound Subjects

Now let's try examples using the ending for compound subjects.

Compound Subjects
For each member of a compound subject, the suffix -உம் is added to each word.

Since compound subjects refer to more than 1 person or thing, the subject thus becomes plural.

Suffix examples:
  1. தம்பியும் தங்கையும் கொடுக்கிறார்கள் = "Younger brother and younger sister give."
  2. அம்மாவும் நானும் உட்கார்கிறோம் = "Mother and I sit."
    1. நானும் மாடும் ஓடுகிறோம் = "The bull and I run."
      • நான் -உம் = நானும்
      • மாடு -உம் = மாடும்
    2. நீயும் பசுவும் பார்க்கிறீர்கள்= "You and the cow see."
      • நீ -ய் -உம் = நீயும்
      • பசு -வ் -உம்= பசுவும்
  3. ஆணும் பெண்ணும் உட்கார்கிறார்கள் = "The male and the female sit."