The Arabic language has three tenses: past, present and command. We learnt how to use past tense verbs in Arabic in one of our previous posts. Today, we’ll look at how to use the present tense in Arabic.
Using Present Tense
Here, we are going to explore the present tense table. As you know from our post on pronouns, in Arabic we have 14 pronouns. Based on those 14 pronouns we can conjugate a verb in 14 different forms as shown in the table below.
We use the verb he did (فَعَلَ) as a standard example in Arabic for all the tenses.
The repeated words are highlighted with similar colours. Make sure you know this table thoroughly. Once you learn this table, you can easily conjugate most of the verbs in present tense.
For example, he is working in Arabic would be يَعْمَلُ. By replacing فعل with عمل, you can conjugate the whole verb table as above.
Of course, there are exceptions to this rule, however, to get an understanding of how the present tense works in Arabic, it’s important to know the patterns in which the verbs are conjugated. The above table provides this pattern.
The Arabic language is like mathematics. Once you understand the formulae, you can perform any number of calculations with ease. The key here is to take some time to understand the fundamentals properly. The present tense verb table is the formula to conjugate most of the Arabic verbs in present tense.
PS: The science of studying the structure of the word (morphology) in Arabic is known as Sarf صرف, whereas the science of studying the structure of the sentence (syntax/grammar) is known as Nahw نحو.