Turkish Potential Mood Positive - to be able, I can
The Potential Mood indicates:
ability to be able, can or disposition may, might
The Potential Mood uses the addition of bilmek to know to form its sense of meaning. It takes the form with a dotted i and is not subject to vowel harmony.
bilmek is a word in its own right.
It is is similar to the Scottish use of "ken" - to know as in Do you ken the swimming? [Do you know how to swim?]
Positive Potential Mood Formation
Verb Stems ending in a Consonant
The suffix-ebil- or -abil- is affixed to the positive verb stems which end in a consonant:
gelmek to come forms a new verb and becomes gelebilmek to be able to come
yazmak to write forms a new verb and becomes yazabilmek to be able to write
The Passive Mood yazılmak to be written also forms a new verb and becomes yazılabilmek to be able to be written
gülmek to laugh forms a new verb and becomes gülebilmek to be able to laugh
The Causative Mood güldürmek to make s.o. laugh forms a new verb and becomes güldürebilmek to be able to make s.o. laugh
Verb Stems ending in a Vowel
Verb Stems ending in a vowel add -yebil- or -yabil- using buffer letter -y-
yürümek to walk forms a new verb and becomes yürüyebilmek to be able to walk
taşımak to carry forms a new verb and becomes taşıyabilmek to be able to carry
The various tenses can be formed as normal after dropping -mek or -mak which are replaced by -e- or -a- to which the verb bilmek to know is affixed thus forming -ebil- or -abil- as the Potential Mood Suffix.
In Turkish a new verb is formed. English uses the auxiliary verb to be able
Turkish Potential Mood Examples
Potential Mood Present Continuous Tense:
gelebiliyorum I can come, I am able to come, I may come, I might come
Potential Mood Present Simple Tense:
gelebilirim I can come, I am able to come, I may come, I might come
Potential Mood Future Tense:
gidebileceksiniz you will be able to go, etc.
Turkish Potential Mood Past Tense:
başlayabildik we were able to start, etc..
Turkish Potential Mood Present Continuous Conjugation
görmek to see becomes in the Potential Form görebilmek to be able to see
görebiliyorum I can see, I am able to see, I may see, I might see
görebiliyorsun you can see, you are able to see
görebiliyor he can see, he is able to see
görebiliyoruz we can see, we are able to see
görebiliyorsunuz you can see, you are am able to see
görebiliyorlar they can see, they are able to see
The Interrogative is formed in a similar manner by using the correct question tag, written separately, according to the number of the personal pronoun:
gelebiliyor muyum? Can I come?
gelebiliyor musunuz? Can you come?
Turkish Potential Mood Puture Conjugation
kalmak to stay, to remain becomes in the Future Potential Form kalabilmek to be able to stay, remain
kalabileceğim I will be able to stay
kalabileceksin you will be able to stay
kalabilecek he will be able to stay
kalabileceğiz we will be able to stay
kalabileceksiniz you will be able to stay
kalabilecekler they will be able to stay
The Future Interrogative is formed in a similar manner.
gidebilecek misiniz? will you be able to go?
Turkish Potential Mood Definite Past Tense
beklemek to wait, to expect becomes in the Past Definite Potential Form bekleyebilmek to be able to wait, expect
bekleyebildim I could wait
bekleyebildin you could wait
bekleyebildi he could wait
bekleyebildik we could wait
bekleyebildiniz you could wait
bekleyebildiler they could wait
Turkish Potential Mood Definite Unreal Past Tense
If we insert the -ir of the simple timeless present tense , then the meaning becomes "unreal"
beklemek to wait, to expect becomes in the Past Definite Potential Unreal bekleyebilirmek to be able to wait, expect
bekleyebilirdim I could have waited
bekleyebilirdin you could have waited
bekleyebilirdi he could have waited
bekleyebilirdik we could have waited
bekleyebilirdiniz you could have waited
bekleyebilirdiler they could have waited
Turkish Potential Mood Indefinite Past Tense
düşünmek to think becomes in the Past Indefinite Potential Form düşünebilmek to be able to think
düşünebilmişim it seems I was able to think
düşünebilmişsin it seems you were able to think
düşünebilmiş it seems he was able to think
düşünebilmişiz it seems we were able to think
düşünebilmişsiniz it seems you were able to think
düşünebilmişler it seems they were able to think
bekleyebilmişsiniz mi? could You have waited?
Turkish Potential Mood Past Continuous Tense
yapmak to do, to make becomes in the Imperfect Past Potential Form yapabilmek to be able to do
yapabiliyordum I was able to do
yapabiliyordun you were able to do
yapabiliyordu he was able to do
yapabiliyorduk we were able to do
yapabiliyordunuz you were able to do
yapabiliyorlardı they were able to do
durabiliyorlardı mı? were they able to stop, halt ?
This exampleshows clearly where the verb bilmek to know is a separate word in its own right and keeps its dotted i as it is not subject to vowel harmony rules.