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Word Formation (1)
An important step in learning any language is to get familiar with the way words are formed in that language. Persian is a language with relatively few independent stems and is therefore highly dependent upon prefixes, suffixes, and other methods of creating new words out of old ones. In this lesson you will get familiar with the structure of nouns and adjectives, how they are made from each other, how they are made using verb stems, etc.
Combined words
It is very common to combine two words (noun or adjective) to make new nouns and adjectives.
کتاب (book)
کار (work)
شتر (camel)
قد (height)
پا (foot)
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خانه (house)
خانه (house)
مرغ (bird)
بلند (long)
برهنه (bare)
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کتابخانه (library)
کارخانه (factory)
شترمرغ (ostrich)
قدبلند (tall)
پابرهنه (barefoot)
There are also times when verb stems are used alongside nouns and adjectives to construct new nouns and adjectives. Here are some examples for present stems.
آش (kind of soup)
هوا (air)
خط (line)
پول (money)
دور (far)
دروغ (lie)
خود (self)
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پز (پختن) (to bake, to make food)
پیما (پیمودن) (to travel)
کش (کشیدن) (to draw)
دار (داشتن) (to have)
بین (دیدن) (to see)
گو (گفتن) (to say)
خواه (خواستن) (to want)
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آشپز ((cook (n)
هواپیما (airplane)
خط‌کش (ruler)
پولدار (rich)
دوربین (camera, telescope)
دروغ‌گو (liar)
خودخواه (selfish)
Prefixed words
In many cases, new words are formed by adding prefixes and suffixes to existing words. Each of these affixes convey distinct meanings and it is even common for some of them to be attached to words with which they are not typically associated for expressing special meanings. Below are some examples of everyday words which are formed using prefixes. Suffixes will be considered in the next lesson.
“با” (meaning “with”)
با
با
با
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سواد (literacy, knowledge)
ادب (politeness)
حال (mood)
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باسواد (literate, knowledgable)
باادب (polite)
باحال (interesting, cool)
“بی” (meaning “without”)
بی
بی
بی
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عقل (wisdom)
کار (work)
ربط (relevance)
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بی‌عقل (stupid)
بیکار (unemployed)
بی‌ربط (irrelevant)
“نا” (meaning “not”)
نا
نا
نا
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درست (correct)
منظّم (tidy)
امید (hope)
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نادرست (incorrect)
نامنظّم (untidy)
ناامید (hopeless)
As you probably noticed, in the last example, the suffix did not mean exactly “not”, though the meaning was similar.
“هم” (meaning “with the same”)
هم
هم
هم
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وطن (country)
سر (head)
سن (age)
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هموطن (compatriot, fellow countryman)
همسر (spouse)
همسن (peer, person of the same age)