Turkish Personal Pronouns - "I, you, he/she/it, we, you, they"

In Turkish the Personal Pronouns are two categories:

(1) Stand-alone Pronouns:
Ben gidiyorum. I am going.

(2) Pronouns in suffix form:
Gidiyorum. I am going.

The stand-alone personal pronouns are not used widely as the person is evident from the personal verb ending.

They are used for emphasis only in their simple form as the verb form itself already points to the person.

This is similar to Spanish where a person will say "comprendo" I understand instead of "Yo comprendo"

Stand-alone are used in their extended forms:

bende on me
sizin of you
bizden from us

when suffixes to, from, with, etc. are added to them.

Turkish Simple Personal Pronouns List

  • Stand Alone Personal Pronoun
  • ben I
  • sen you [familiar]
  • o He, she, it
  • biz we
  • siz you [formal]
  • onlar they

Emphasis of the Turkish Personal Pronoun

When the pronoun needs to be emphasized the stand-alone version is used together with the personal suffixed verb tense form.

gidiyorum I'm going
emphasized →
ben gidiyorum I am going

kaldık we stayed
emphasized →
biz kaldık we stayed

Turkish Suffixed Pronouns

These suffixed forms are used to show extended meaning pronoun within a sentence.

Suffixed Pronouns "I, we, you, they"
ben Ibiz we
[NOT bene]
to me bize to us
[NOT benin]
of me, my bizim
[NOT bizimiz]
beni me (obj.)bizi us (obj.)
bende on mebizde on us
benden from mebizden from us
benimle or benle with mebizimle or bizle with us
Suffixed Pronouns"you (sing.) you (plur.)"
Singular, familiarPlural, polite,formal, public
sen yousiz you
[NOT sene]
to yousize to you
senin of you, yoursizin your
seni you (obj.)sizi you (obj.)
sende on yousizde on you
senden from yousizden from you
seninle or senle with yousizinle or sizle with you
Suffixed Pronouns"he, she, it, they"
o he, she, itonlar they
ona to him, her, itonlara to them
onun of him, his, her, itsonların their
onu him, her, it (obj.)onları them (obj.)
onda on him, her,itonlarda on them
ondan from him, her, itonlardan from them
onunla or onla with him, her, itonlarla with them

The Third person spelling changes. All extended forms of o use buffer letter when adding suffixes.

he, she, it adds letter -n-
o-nu, o-na him , to him

The third person plural is also irregular becoming onlar they.

Extended Forms Turkish Personal Pronouns

The main use for the Personal Pronouns is to extend them with suffixes to, from, with etc.

Tukish Motion Toward Suffix (dative) -e /-a to, towards

Personal pronouns show some changes in spelling have naturally occurred in the Turkish language:

  • Motion Toward Suffix
  • bana to me
    [NOT bene.]
  • sana to you
    [NOT sene.]
  • ona to him, to her, to it
  • bize to us
    [NOT bizimiz.]
  • size to you
  • onlara to them

These forms are irregular bana, sana where bene, sene would have been expected.

This is a shift that has happened historically.

The Kazakh and Uzbek Turkic languages have not made this vowel shift.

  • Bana onu verin. Give it / that to me
  • Onlara bakınız. Look at them.
    [LIT: towards them.]
  • Bize inanıyorlar. They believe us.
    [LIT: believe to us.]

Turkish says bize inanın believe to us

The word inanmak to believe takes the "movement toward condition" as its object.

English uses the direct object for the verb Believe us.

Some other verbs in English that do not take the direct object case:
"I am frightened OF the dark."

Turkish Static Condition Suffix (locative) -de/-da in, on, at

  • Static Condition suffix
  • bende in, on,at me
  • sende on you
  • onda on him, on her, on it
  • bizde on us
  • sizde on you
  • onlarda on them
  • Bende para yok. I've got no money.
    [LIT: on me]
  • Sende para var mı? Have you got any money?
    [LIT: on you]
  • Bizde para var mı? Have we got any money?
    [LIT: on us]

Turkish Motion Away Suffix (ablative) -den/-dan from, via

  • Motion Away Suffix
  • benden from me
  • senden from you
  • ondan from him, her ,it
  • bizden from us
  • sizden from you
  • onlardan from them
  • Benden bir şemsiye alabilirsiniz.
    You can have an umbrella off me.
    [lit: from me]
  • Senden bir sigara alır mıyım?
    Can I have a cigarette off you?
    [lit: take from you]
  • Ondan korkuyorum
    I am frightened of him
    [lit: frightened from him]

Turkish Ownership Suffix -in/-ın/-un/-ün of, belonging to

  • Ownership Suffix
  • benim my, of me
  • senin your, of you
  • onun his, hers, its, of him.
  • bizim our, of us
  • sizin your, of you
  • onların their, of them
  • Benim şemsiyemi [şemsiye-m-i] alabilirsiniz.
    You can take my umbrella.
  • Senin araban yeni mi?
    Is your car new?
  • Onların arabası eskidir.
    Their car is old.

Turkish Direct Object Suffix -i -ı -u -ü "the"

  • Direct Object Suffix.
  • beni me
  • seni you
  • onu him, her, it
  • bizi us
  • sizi you
  • onları them
  • Mehmet, beni vurdu.
    Mehmet shot me.
    [ben-i "me" as a direct object]
  • Ali, arabanı onardı mı?
    Did Ali repair your car?
    [araba-n-ı "your car" as a direct object]
  • Mustafa, onu yaptı
    Mustapha did it.
    [on-u "it" as a direct object]

Turkish "with" suffix -le -la (ile) suffix "with, and, together"

  • "with, via" Suffix
  • ben(im)le with me
  • sen(in)le with you
  • on(un)la with him, her, it.
  • biz(im)le with us
  • siz(in)le with you
  • onlarla with them

-le -la suffix can be considered as an alternative.

The preferred version is added to the genitive -in form of the pronouns.

ben(im)le, sen(in)le, on(un)la, biz(im)le, siz(in)le are alternatives.

The third person plural onlarla with them is the only alternative.

It is not correct to say onlarınla

  • Mehmet, benimle geldi.
    Mehmet came with me.
  • Mustafa, bizimle kalacak.
    Mustapha will stay with us.
  • Ali, onlarla geldi mi?
    Did Ali come with them?

The Reflexive Pronoun kendi self/own

As an adjective kendi means own

The person agrees with the thing which is owned:

  • kendi bahçem my own garden
  • kendi evin your own house
  • kendi arabaları their own car
    [kendi araba-ları]

The suffixed kendi self Personalized Forms

  • The Reflexive Pronoun
  • kendim myself
  • kendin [familiar] yourself
  • kendi(si) himself / herself / itself
  • kendimiz ourselves
  • kendiniz yourselves Also: yourself [formal]
  • kendileri themselves

The third person singular is almost always in the short form:
kendi as the -si suffix is dropped in use.

Kendi is also use in its extended (suffixed) forms:

  • Reflexive Pronoun Extended
  • kendime to myself
  • kendinden from yourself
  • kendinde or kendisinde on himself
  • kendimizle with ourselves
  • kendinizin of yourselves
  • kendilerinden from themselves

The -si suffix IS USED when further suffixes are addedto kendi(si)

Usage of kendi self

Kendi is used in many different contexts, especially for emphasis:

  • Kendi meaning myself, yourself, himself
  • Kendime bir bilgisayar aldım.
    I bought a computer for myself.
  • Bence kendini biraz küçümsüyorsun.
    I think you underestimate yourself a bit.
  • Kendi meaning own, as an adjective.
  • kendi evim or benim kendi evim
    my own house
  • kendi düşüncesi or onun kendi düşüncesi
    her own opinion
  • Kendi meaning on my own or in order to emphasize the subject.
  • Bu resmi ben kendim yaptım.
    I made this picture on my own. (by myself).
  • Bunu biz kendimiz düşündük.
    We thought that on our own. (by ourselves).
  • Kendi giving the meaning of a formal impression:
  • Size bay Sarıkurt'u takdim etmek istiyorum.
    I would like to present you Mr. Sarikurt.
  • Kendisi daha önce bir şirkette CEO olarak çalışıyordu.
    He used to work as a CEO in a company.

This version is used for 3rd person singular and plural, always as kendisi or kendileri.

The use of the formal addressing kendisi himself

This usage is constantly used in newpaper reports and television interviews.

  • Duplication of kendi kendi as an adverb is used to describe verbs:
  • Bilgisayar bozuktu. Ama daha sonra kendi kendine çalıştı. The computer had broken down. But then, it worked by itself.
  • Kendi kendime konuşuyorum. I am talking to myself.
  • Türkçe'yi kendi kendime öğrendim. I learned Turkish by myself/on my own
  • Do not confuse reflexive verbs with the use of kendi:
  • I had a wash. translates as Yıkandım. in Turkish [LIT: I washed myself]
  • The Reflexive Verb Yıkanmak to wash onself is used.
  • [Kendimi yıkadım. is WRONG.]
    The reflexive verb form: Yıkandım. is CORRECT.
  • I got wet. [Kendimi ısladım is WRONG.]
    The reflexive verb form: Islandım. is CORRECT.

Turkish Interrogative Personal Pronoun who?, whom? kim?, kimler?

The pronoun kim? who? has a plural in Turkish: kimler? who?

English who is both singular or plural within its context.

kimeto whom?kimlere
kimiwhom? (obj.)kimleri
kimdeon whom?kimlerde
kimdenfrom whom?kimlerden
kiminle or kimlewith whom?kimlerle

Turkish Interrogative Pronoun Examples kim who

  • Kimi gördünüz?
    Whom did you see?
    [Objective Singular]
  • Kimleri gördünüz?
    Whom (what people) did you see?
    [Objective Plural]
  • Arabayı kimlerden aldınız?
    From whom did you buy the car?
  • Parayı kime verdiniz?
    To whom did you give the money?
  • Bu gözlük kimin?
    Whose are these glasses?
  • Kiminle geldi?
    Whom did he come with?

Turkish Impersonal Pronoun biri somebody

  • birisi (singular particular) somebody
  • birileri (plural) somebody

The word somebody in Turkish can be a singular:
somebody biri, birisi
or plural somebodies birileri

biri var, birisi var birileri var all mean There is somebody there.

Positive statements use somebody in English
in Turkish it may be a plural birileri "somebodies"

Turkish Negative Impersonal Pronoun kimse anybody, nobody

Turkish kimse is similar to the French "personne"

It can be negative, positive or interrogative meaning somebody, anybody or anybody?

The meaning of kimse can be singular or plural.

Turkish has no such word as "kimseler."

  • nobody kimse [negative]
  • anybody kimse [negative]
  • anybody? kimse [positive or negative question]
  • kimse can take a suffix:
  • Kimseye [kimse-ye] anlatmam!
    I will not tell anybody!
  • Kimse var mı? Kimseler var mı?
    Is there anybody there?
  • Kimse yok.
    There is nobody there.
  • Kimseden aldin mi? Did you get it from anybody?
  • Şimdiden evde biri (birileri) olmalı.
    There must be somebody at home by now.
    [Positive Statement.]
  • Saat sekizde parkta kimse görünmedi.
    At eight o'clock there was nobody to be seen in the park.
    [Negative Statement.]
  • Saat sekizde parkta kimse var mıydı?
    Was there anybody in the park at eight o'clock?
    [Positive Question.]
  • Şu anda ofisinizde kimse yok mu?
    Isn't there anybody in your office at the moment?
    [Negative Question.]

Turkish Diminutive Form kimsecik kimsecikler

kimsecik, kimsecikler is only used with the negative:
kimsecik yok the the meaning becomes nobody at all

  • Odanın içerisinde / içinde kimse var mı?
    Is there anybody inside the room?
  • Odada kimsecik / kimsecikler yok.
    There is nobody at all in the room.

kimsecik / kimsecikler is only used with negative verbs.

It is invariable and cannot be suffixed.