Lesson 9

The verb forms we have so far learned are those of the active voice (parasmaipada, "word for another"). But in Sanskrit, besides active and passive voices there exists a third set of forms, so called atmanepada ("word for oneself"). Sometimes it is called the middle or medium voice.

The distinction between parasmaipada and atmanepada is roughly described by their Sanskrit names. Thus yajati means: "he sacrifices for the sake of somebody else" and yajate "he sacrifices for himself". But this distinction between "for somebody" X "for oneself" was gradually lost and is preserved only in case of the above mentioned example. Some verbs can use both forms (without a change in meaning) whereas in case of some verbs only one of them is possible.


labh-, labhate (to get, to obtain) A:

Sg. Du. Pl.
1. labhe labhavahe labhamahe
2. labhase labhethe labhadhve
3. labhate labhete labhante

Sandhi rules:


-e, -o at the end of the word and before a- is unchanged. But this initial a- is lost and changed into apostrophe: vane atra -> vane 'tra (here in the forest). Before other vowels a final -e, -o is changed into -a: vane iha -> vana iha (here in the forest). But Dual endings -i, -e, -u are never submitted to the Sandhi changes. Also the particles of address "he" and "re" are not changed: he agne (o, fire; o, god Agni).

Text (read and translate):


1. vayorbalena taravah kampante |

2. asinadyarayo mriyanta ityatra nrpo bhasate |

3. vasunaj rawinnrpatinkavayo 'rthayante |

4. wastre adhuna wiksamaha iti pattre harirlikhati |

5. papadduhkhaj jayate |

6. wisyanaj vinaya udyogawca gurubhyo rocete |

7. adharmaya na dharmaya yatethe |

8. visnoh sukte rsi labhete |

9. atrarsirbhanuj vandate |

10. agni iksate balah |

11. dhanena pawujllabhadhve yajbaya |

12. sada guroh padau balah sevante |

13. phale atra manusyasya panyostisthatah |

14. sahete anarthaj sadhu |

15. vanesviharksa vasanti |

16. ksatriya rsi sevante |

17. yada sadhavo mriyante tada moksaj labhante |

18. kimiksase |

The exercise key

Translate to Sanskrit:


1. The house is shaking thanks to the power of ocean's waves.

2. The father is looking at son's face.

3. Children ask the father for food.

4. Why the king does not strive after people's benefit?

5. In the forest there fight an elephant and a bear.

6. Boys like fruit.

7. Holy men (Du.) begin with a sacrifice.

8. Father likes sons' discipline.

The exercise key



arth-, arthayate (X): to ask for (Acc.)

iks-, iksate (I): to look at, to stare

kamp-, kampate (I): to shake, to tremble

jan-, jayate (IV): to be born

bhas-, bhasate (I): to speak, to say

mr-, mriyate (IV): to die

yat-, yatate (I): to strive for (Dat.)

a+rabh-, arabhate (I): to begin with (Acc.)

ruc-, rocate (I): to like (Dat., Gen.)

labh-, labhate (I): to get, to obtain

vand-, vandate (I): to praise, to pay homage

wiks-, wiksate (I): to learn

sah-, sahate (I): to bear, to endure

sev-, sevate (I): to serve, to honour (Acc.)

anartha-, m.: poverty

udyoga-, m.: exertion, perseverance

kalyana-, n.: benefit, goodness

taru-, m.: tree

dvijati-, m.: "twice-born", member of a high caste

dhairya-, n.: patience, courage, firmness

pawu-, m.: sacrificial animal, cattle

bhanu-, m.: sun

moksa-, m.: deliverance

yajba-, m.: sacrifice

vayu-, m.: wind

vici-, m.: wave

vinaya-, m.: discipline

wiwu-, m.: child

samudra-, m.: ocean, sea