Nominal sentence

The easiest sentence structure in Tamil is the nominal sentence. It's a sentence that only consists of two nouns and the verb to be (copula). In Tamil, you don't even have a copula, so the easiest sentence is just two nouns.

நான் மாறன்nāṉ māṟaṉI am Maaran

Negated nominal sentence

If you want to negate this sentence, you simply append the word "no" to this sentence

நான் மாறன் இல்லைnāṉ māṟaṉ illaiI am not Maaran


You can change this nominal sentence into a question by adding the -ஆ to the second noun. These questions will be answered by yes or no.

நான் மாறனா?nāṉ māṟaṉā?Am I Maaran?

Remember that மாறனாmāṟaṉā is the result of மாறன்māṟaṉ + ā.

In the previous chapter, you learned about interogatives. If you use one of them instead of the second noun, you can create questions that need a more elaborate answer than yes or no.

நான் யார்?nāṉ yār?Who am I?

Note that you do not need to add the ā to the second noun. It's already a question word, so there is no need to mark it as such.

The verb "to be"

If you wanted to describe the state of something in English or in any other Germanic or Roman language, you would choose the verb to be in combination with an adjective. The Tamil language, however, doesn't know the concept of a copula.

So in these situations, you won't be able to translate sentences straight from English into Tamil.

We solved the adjectives as predicates situation in the previous section by nominalising the adjective. There are similar methods for all the other situations as well of which you will learn most of them in the following chapters.