Introduction

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Chapter 18:  Verbs of Motion >>


Chapter 17

The Imperative

17.1        Formation of the imperative

    In the case of the vast majority of Belarusian verbs, the imperative is formed as follows.  Conjugate the verb for the 2nd person singular and remove the final two letters.  If the stem ends in a vowel, add an -й.  If the stem ends in an invariably non-palatized consonant, nothing is added, otherwise add either an -і or a -ь.  The ending Ėі is added either if the infinitive is more than one syllable and the accent falls on the last syllable, or if the root ends in two or more consonants (note that the letter combinations дз and дж are each treated as a single letter).  If neither of these two conditions is met, then a -ь is added.  This forms the singular form of the imperative.  To form the plural imperative, the suffix -це is appended to the singular form.

infin.

2nd Pers. Sing.
Stem
Imp. Sing.
Imp. Pl.
браць to take
бярэш
бяр-
бяры
бярыце
глядзець
to look
глядзіш
глядз-
глядзі
глядзіце
глянуць
to glance
гляніш
глян-
глянь
гляньце
жыць
to live
жывеш
жыв-
жыві
жывіце
легчы
to lie down
ляжеш
ляж-
ляж
ляжце
мыць
to wash
мыеш
мы-
мый
мыйце
ехаць
to drive
едзеш
едз-
едзь
едзьце
рабіць
to do
робіш
роб-
рабі
рабіце
рэзаць
to slice
рэжаш
рэж-
рэж
рэжце
сячы
to cut up
сячэш
сяч-
сячы
сячыце
стаць
to become
станеш
стан-
стань
станьце
стукнуць
to knock
стукнеш
стукн-
стукні
стукніце
чакаць
to wait
чакаеш
чака-
чакай
чакайце


17.2        Vowel changes due to spelling rules

    There are several verbs, which seem to be irregular, but the changes of their vowels are really just manifestions of spelling rules.

баяцца
to fear
баішся
бо-
бойся
бойцеся
смяяцца
to dare
смяешся
сме-
смейся
смейцеся
стаяць
to stand
стаіш
сто-
стой
стойце


17.3        Verbs beginning with вы-

    If imperative form of verb ends in an -і (or -ы due to spelling rules) the verb formed by adding the prefix вы- to the verb also has an imperative that ends in -і, even though the accent will fall on the prefix.

Infin.

Imp. Sing.
Infin.

Imp. Sing.
весці
to lead
вядзі
вывесці
to lead away
выведзі
казаць
to say
кажы
выказаць
to state something
выкажы
рваць
to tear
рві
вырваць
to tear away
вырві


17.4        Irregular imperatives

    Certain verbs have irregular imperatives.  A few of these are given below.

Infin.

2nd Pers. Sing.
Imp. Sing.
Imp. Pl.
даваць
to give
даеш
давай
давайце
даць
to give (Perf.)
дасі
дай
дайце
есці
to eat
еш
еш
ешце





біць
to hit
б'еш
бі
біце
ліць
to pour
льеш
лі
ліце
піць
to drink
пьеш
пі
піце


17.5        1st person plural imperative

    The most common way of forming the 1st person plural imperative is by using the word давайце.  If the verb is imperfective, давайце is followed by the verbís infinitive.  If the verb is perfective, the word давайце is followed by the verb conjugated for the 1st person plural.

Давайце яшчэ нальём.
Let's pour in some more.
Давайце крычаць: хто слабей крыкне, таго зьядзём.
Let's yell:  Whoever yells the weakest, him we will eat.

   
    Alternatively, verbs do have a special form for the 1st person plural imperative.

Бярэм манаткі і марш!
Let's grab our gear and move out!
Уцякайма, пакуль не позна.
Let's get out of here, while it's not to late.
Едзем на базар, каб купіць ежу на заўтра.
Let's go to the market to buy food for tomorrow.

    If the 2nd person singular imperative ends in -й, the 1st person plural imperative is formed by adding the letters -ма to the end of the imperative.

Infin.

Imp. Sing.
1st Pers. Pl. Imp.
будаваць
to wait
будуй
будуйма
мыцца
to wash oneself
мыйся
мыймася
чытаць
to read
чытай
чытайма


    If the 2nd person singular imperative ends in an accented -ы or -і, the 1st person plural imperative is formed by replacing that final letter with -эм or -ем respectively.

бегчы
to run
бяжы
бяжэм
брацца
to wrap around something
бярыся
бярэмся
крычаць
to yell
крычы
крычэм




сарваць
to tear (Perf.)
сарві
сарвем
спаць
to sleep
спі
спем
хадзіць
to walk
хадзі
хадзем


    Otherwise, the 1st person plural imperative is identical to the 1st person plural indicative form.

быць
to be
будзь
будзем
сесці
to sit down (Perf.)
сядзь
сядзем
легчы
to lie down (Perf.)
ляж
ляжам


17.6        3rd person imperative

    The third person imperative is formed by placing either the particle хай or няхай before the verb, conjugated for the third person, either singular or plural.


Хай гаворыць.
Let him speak.
Не чапай, хай ляжыць.
Don't disturb him, let him lie.
Хай будзе святло.
Let there be light.


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Chapter 18:  Verbs of Motion >>

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Copyright (c)  2004  Christian Cardell Marchant.
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