Upper Sorbian Grammar

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The imperative is used to express an order or a wish.

The imperative forms use the present stem of a verb. In the 1st and the 2nd person the imperative has special forms, but in the 3rd person it uses the present forms preceeded by the njech word.

The 1st pers. sing. imperat form doesn't exist.

The table shows the imperative endings:

singular dual plural

1 -moj -my

2 -- -tej -će

As one can see, these endings are identical as the present tense endings. What differs the present and the imperative forms is that there are no alternations in a verb's stem in the present and some alternations exist in imperative.

In the imperative the -a- stem verbs lenghten their stem with an extra -j-. The -e- and -i-/-y- stem verbs loss the last vovel of their stems.

Compare the following pairs of the present and imperative 1 plur. forms:

wołamy - wołajmy; wučimy - wučmy; bjerjemy - bjermy.

Here you have some examples of the imperative paradigms:

An -a- stem verb: wołać woła npf. to call

singular dual plural

1 wołajmoj wołajmy

2 wołaj wołajtej wołajće

3 njech woła njech wołatej njech wołaja

An -i-/-y- stem verb: wučić wuči npf. to teach

singular dual plural

1 wučmoj wučmy

2 wuč wučtej wučće

3 njech wuči njech wučitej njech wuča

An -e- stem verb: brać bjerje npf. to take

singular dual plural

1 bjermoj bjermy

2 bjer bjertej bjerće

3 njech bjerje njech bjerjetej njech bjeru

If there is a pair of same-meaning perfective and nonperfective verb, the perfective one is used mainly in positive sentences, whereas the nonperfective one appeares much more often in negative sentences (this is not a hard rule and opposite situation is also possible).

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