Esperanto: everything you need to know

joshua-rawson-harris-KRELIShKxTM-unsplash.jpg

This post is an overview of everything you need to know about Esperanto parts of speech to get started using the language in a meaningful way.

One of the great things about Esperanto is that the parts of speech are incredibly regular, meaning that they always follow the rules. (If you’ve studied other languages, you’re probably breathing a sigh of relief right about now).

So, essentially, all you need to do is remember the rules: no tricky conjugation or weird endings or anything like that to memorize.

Nouns

Nouns always end in -o.

For example: libro (book), aǔto (car), lernejo (school), akvo (water), pico (pizza)

Proper nouns

Proper nouns follow the same rule as regular nouns, always ending in -o.

Note: some personal and brand names ignore this rule, instead opting to use the same spelling across languages.

Examples: Usono (United States), Eǔropo (Europe), Britujo (Britain), Afriko (Africa), Kanado (Canada)

Adjectives

Adjectives always end in -a.

Examples: varma (warm), alta (tall), rapida (fast), forta (strong), granda (big)

Adverbs

Adverbs always end in -e.

Examples: rapide (quickly), facile (easily), ofte (often), fakte (in fact), laŭte (loudly)

Verbs — infinitive

The infinitive form of a verb—which some call the “root form” or “dictionary form”—always ends in -i.

Note: in English, the infinitive is when we put “to” in front of the verb (i.e. to run, to eat, to live)

Examples: legi (to read), skribi (to write), manĝi (to eat), dormi (to sleep), diri (to say), fari (to do)

Verbs — present tense

For the present tense of verbs, we drop the -i and add -as.

Note: in Esperanto, the present tense can also be used as the progressive tense, meaning that “mi skribas” can either be “I write” or “I am writing”

Examples: legas (read), skribas (write), manĝas (eat), dormas (sleep), diras (say), faras (do)

Verbs — future tense

For the future tense of verbs, we drop the -i and add -os.

Examples: legos (will read), skribos (will write), manĝos (will eat), dormos (will sleep), diros (will say), faros (will do)

Verbs — past tense

For the past tense of verbs, we just add an “-s” to the end of the infinitive.

Examples: legis (read), skribis (wrote), manĝis (ate), dormis (slept), diris (said), faris (did)

What are you waiting for?

Esperanto is designed to be an international language that fosters community and connection, and it’s the most widely spoken constructed language in the world.

Plus, it’s straightforward to learn and can actually help you learn other languages more quickly.

If you’d like to learn more about this cool language, we have more great content like this (along with exercises and review tools) on the Forge app.