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past tense ..
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  1. #1
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    past tense ..

    hi everyone ..
    ive been studying the fsi and benjawin becker books..and they cover the subject of past tense ..
    these are the example given in those books
    he studied thai for 3 years ..khaw rian paasaa thai yuu 3 bii
    ( but doesnt study now)

    he has studied thai for 3 years - khaw rian paasaa thai maa 3 bii leeow

    (he has been studying for 3 years , still studying)

    however my gf from chiang mai gives me examples of the exact opposite...she switches the yuu and maa


    please help !!!

    feel free to write in thai if you like ..i can read it im just lazy when it comes to typing


    many thanks

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    Re: past tense ..

    If you put อยู่ yoo(1) after the verb, it normally indicates present continuous in speech - it is simply an abbreviated form of the longer กำลัง + verb + อยู่

    Your first example

    เขาเรียนภาษาไทยอยู่ 3 ปี
    khao(4) rian pasa(4) thai yoo(1) 3 bee

    doesn't look grammatically well-formed to me. It would translate as 'he is studying thai 3 years. If you take off the '3 ปี' it would be correct, meaning 'he is currently studying Thai.'

    If you want to say he started studying 3 years ago and is still studying now, you can use

    เขากำลังเรียนภาษาไทยอยู่ เรียน 3 ปี มาแล้ว
    khao(4) gamlang rian pasa(4) thai yoo(1) rian 3 bee mar laew(3)
    [lit: he studying thai study 3 year has already]

    Softwater

    Last edited by softwater; 07-10-09 at 10:15 AM.

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    Re: past tense ..

    thanks softwater ..
    and if i want to say "he studied for 3 years" ...( maybe 20 years ago - no longer studying )
    how would i structure that ?

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    Re: past tense ..

    Quote Originally Posted by simonlovesbkk View Post
    thanks softwater ..
    and if i want to say "he studied for 3 years" ...( maybe 20 years ago - no longer studying )
    how would i structure that ?
    Try this on your girlfriend, see if she concurs:

    ประมาณ 20 ปี ก่อน เขาเรียนภาษาไทยถึง 3 ปี เท่านั้น
    bra(1) marn 20 bee gorn(1) khao(4) rian pasa(4) thai teung(4) 3 bee tao(2) nan(3)
    [lit: about 20 years ago he study thai to 3 years only]

    nb: i'm not sure whether you need to add ถึง as I have above - it may be unnecessary.

    The numbers are tones
    (1) low tone
    (2) falling tone
    (3) high tone
    (4) rising tone
    no number = middle tone
    Last edited by softwater; 08-10-09 at 10:51 AM. Reason: add comment

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    Re: past tense ..

    Quote Originally Posted by simonlovesbkk View Post

    he studied thai for 3 years ..khaw rian paasaa thai yuu 3 bii
    ( but doesnt study now)

    he has studied thai for 3 years - khaw rian paasaa thai maa 3 bii leeow

    (he has been studying for 3 years , still studying)


    I will share my two-cents here.

    First of all, the examples are correct grammatically.

    If you want to stress/emphasize the " past ", you can simply add " keoy -เคย " in front of verbs. It will become more like the " past perfect" tense.

    He (had) studied Thai for 3 years . = khaw keoy rian paasaa thai yuu 3 bii
    (but doesn't study now)

    He had sold bicycles in Bangkok for 3 years. = khaw keoy khaai jaak-kra-yaan nai krung-dheb yuu saam bii. (doesn't sell them anymore)
    Last edited by syn; 08-10-09 at 12:03 PM.

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    Re: past tense ..

    Quote Originally Posted by simonlovesbkk View Post
    thanks softwater ..
    and if i want to say "he studied for 3 years" ...( maybe 20 years ago - no longer studying )
    how would i structure that ?
    Then you use the past perfect tense with " keoy ".
    Last edited by syn; 08-10-09 at 12:01 PM.

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    Re: past tense ..

    Quote Originally Posted by softwater View Post

    ประมาณ 20 ปี ก่อน เขาเรียนภาษาไทยถึง 3 ปี เท่านั้น
    bra(1) marn 20 bee gorn(1) khao(4) rian pasa(4) thai teung(4) 3 bee tao(2) nan(3)
    [lit: about 20 years ago he study thai to 3 years only]
    This is not correct. It is not natural and not grammatically correct to say it like the above answer.

    You should say khao rian pasa thai yuu (kair) saam bii tao naan mua bra maan yee sib bii tee laew. = He had studied Thai for three years only around twenty years ago. ( OR twenty years ago, he had studied Thai for three years only.)
    kair = only

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    Re: past tense ..

    Thanks Syn, my grammar is admittedly poor.

    Your answer here is
    เขาเรียนภาษาไทยอยู่(....)สามปีเท่านั้น เมื่อประมาณยี่สิบปีที่แล้ว

    What is the word kair? is it แก่?

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    Re: past tense ..

    Quote Originally Posted by softwater View Post

    What is the word kair? is it แก่?
    แค่

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    Re: past tense ..

    Doh! thanks again.

    แค่ and เคย - these are two basic words I'd almost completely forgotten about; yet another reminder that its time I went back to school.

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