Sámegillii | På norsk | In English

The verb tells us what is happening or what is being done.

Verbal inflection is determined by the type of stem the individual verb has. That can be determined by counting the number of syllables in the final foot of the verb. There are

  • vowel stem (bisyllabic) verbs with two syllables in the final foot, and they end in "-at", "-it" or "-ut" in the infinitive: boahtit 'to come', mannat 'to go', lávlut 'to sing', rehkenastit 'to count', muitališgoahtit 'to begin to tell'.
  • consonant stem (trisyllabic) verbs with three syllables in the final foot. They always end in "-it" in the infinitive: muitalit 'to tell', boradit 'to dine on, to eat [accenting the process]'.
  • contracted verbs with two syllables, and ending in "-át", "-et" or "-ot" in the infinitive: diŋgot 'to place an order', čohkkát 'to sit', fárret 'to move (somewhere)'.

Diphthong simplification and consonant gradation are things to be considered when inflecting words.

There is a difference between finite and non-finite verb forms:

  • Finite verb forms are ones that are inflected for person and number, which marks agreement with the subject: don 'bohtet' (you 'came'), son 'ii' boađe (he/she did 'not' come), sii 'boađášedje' (they 'would come').
  • Non-finite verb forms are not inflected for person or number, e.g. the infinitive: boahtit 'to come' and the perfect participle: boahtán '(have) come'.

Mood is an inflectional category of the verb that indicates the speakers relation to what he says. We have four moods in North Saami:

  • The indicative (used for direct communication): Mun 'boađán' ihttin. (I 'am coming' tomorrow.)
  • The imperative (used for giving orders): 'Boađe' donge! ('Come here', you too!)
  • The conditional (used for setting a condition): Ii ábut vaikko politiijat 'boađášedje/boađále'. (There is no use even if the police 'were to come'.)
  • The potential (used for expressing possibility): In dieđe 'bođeža' go juovlastállu. (I don't know if Santa Clause 'will come'.)

Read more about verbs here .

Back to the grammar main page.