var there is/are and yok there isn't/aren't

A hotel in Kuşadası at the far end of Ladies' Beach
A hotel sign in Kuşadası

This sign says it all! Is there a room empty or not, we wonder?

Boş oda var. There are vacant rooms.

Boş oda yok. There are not vacant rooms.

Turkish Present Tense Form - var, yok

var and yok are used singular or plural:
there is, there isn't or the plural there are, there aren't

var means "Is existent, It exists, There is, There are"

yok means Is non existent, It does not exist, There isn't, There aren't

  • Tepede bir lokanta var.
    There is a cafe on the hill.
  • Bu ağaçta çok meyve var.
    There is a lot of fruit on this tree.
  • Bahçede kızlar yok.
    There are no girls in the garden.
  • Garajda hiç araba yok.
    There is/are not any car(s) in the garage at all.
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yok.
    There is/are no match(es) in the green box.

"People are" and "Things is" in Turkish.

This is why the last two examples can be singular or plural in meaning.

Turkish Question- var mı? yok mu?

Formed by adding the Question Particle mi?/mu?

The Question Particle mi? mu? is written separately:

Var mı? Does it exist? Is there? Are there?

Yok mu? Doesn't it exist? Isn't there? Aren't there?

  • Tepede bir lokanta var mı?
    Is there a cafe on the hill?
  • Ağaçta meyve var mı?
    Is there any fruit on the tree?
  • Garajda hiç araba yok mu?
    Isn't there a/any car(s) in the garage?
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yok mu?
    Are there not any matches in the green box?

Turkish Definite Past Form - vardı, yoktu

The past tense suffix is -di - tu

  • varvardı [var-dı]
    There was, There were
  • Similarly yokyoktu [yok-tu]
    There was not, There were not
  • Tepede bir lokanta vardı.
    There was a cafe on the hill.
  • Bu ağaçta çok meyve vardı.
    There was a lot of fruit on this tree.
  • Garajda hiç araba yoktu.
    There wasn't a (single) car in the garage.
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yoktu.
    There were no matches in the green box.

Turkish Past Definite Question - var mıydı? yok muydu?

The past question tag is miydi?/muydu?

The Past Question Tag is written separately.

Var mıydı?Did it exist? Was there? Were there?

Yok muydu?Didn't it exist? Wasn't there? Weren't there?

  • Tepede bir lokanta var mıydı?
    Was there is a cafe on the hill?
  • Ağaçta meyve var mıydı?
    Was there is any fruit on the tree?
  • Garajda hiç araba yok muydu?
    Wasn't there a car(s) in the garage?
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yok muydu?
    Weren't there (any) matches in the green box?
Here is a sign along the old Lycian Road near Kaş in the South Aegean.
Beware of the Dog! - Turkish road sign

It clearly shows that var / yok always come at the end of sentences.

"Care! Dog there is!" mirrors the Turkish word order.

Turkish Formal Form of "Var" and "Yok"

vardır definitely, surely

yoktur definitely not

The public form vardır / yoktur is a Statement of Fact

Suffixed with the verb to be -dir / -tur

it is used in Public Notices and Advices.

Traffic Propaganda in Manisa, Turkey
Trafik Propaganda  - Every Law has a Reason
Unutma! Her trafik kuralının bir nedeni vardır.
Don't forget, every traffic law has a reason!
Showing vardır as definitely, surely.
  • Çirkin erkek yoktur sadece bakımsız erkek vardır.
    There are no ugly men, only there are neglected men.
    [definitely]
  • Bir kiloda bin gram vardır.
    There are 1000 grams in a Kilogram.
    [Statement of Fact]
  • Garajda hiç araba yoktur.
    There is (surely) not a (single) car in the garage.
    [Statement of Fact]
  • Yeşil kutuda hiç kibrit yoktur.
    There is not a (single) match in the green box.
    [Definite Statement]

Turkish Present Conditional Form varsa, yoksa

The Conditional Particle -sa is suffixed.

varsa If there is, If there are.

yoksa If there is not, If there are not.

  • Tepede bir lokanta varsa, orada yiyelim.
    If there is a cafe on the hill, let us eat there.
  • Ağaçta meyve varsa, onu koparırım.
    If there is any fruit on the tree, I will pick it.
  • Garajda hiç araba yoksa, o zaman bir taksi tutun.
    If there isn't a car in the garage, then take a taxi
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yoksa, çakmağını kullan. [familiar]
    If there are no matches in the green box, use your lighter.
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yoksa, çakmağınızı kullanın. [polite]
    If there are no matches in the green box, use your lighter.

Turkish Past Conditional Form varsaydı, yoksaydı

varsaydı If there was

yoksaydı If there was not

These forms are not widely used.

The verb olmak to be(come)
olmamak not to be(come)
is used for the Past Conditional.

  • olsaydı.
    [ol-sa-ydı]
    If there was, If there were.
  • olmasaydı.
    [ol-ma-sa-ydı]
    If there was not, If there were not.
  • Tepede bir lokanta olsaydı, orada yerdik.
    If there had been a cafe on the hill, we would have eaten there.
  • Tepede bir lokanta olmuş olsaydı, orada yerdik.
    If there had been a cafe on the hill, we would have eaten there.
    [olmuş = been]
  • Ağaçta meyve olsaydı, onu koparırdım.
    If there had been any fruit on the tree, I would have picked it.
  • Garajda hiç araba olmasaydı, taksi tutacaktım.
    If there had not been a car in the garage, I would have taken a taxi.
  • Garajda hiç araba olmamış olsaydı, taksi tutacaktım.
    If there had not been a car in the garage, I would have taken a taxi.
    [olmamış = not been]
  • Yeşil kutuda hiç kibrit olmasaydı, çakmağımı kullanırdım.
    If there weren't any matches in the green box, I would have used my lighter.
  • Yeşil kutuda hiç kibrit olmamış olsaydı, çakmağımı kullanırdım.
    If there weren't any matches in the green box, I would have used my lighter
  • Kırmızıda geçmemiş olsaydım, kadın yaşayacaktı.
    Kırmızıda geçmiş olmasaydım, kadın yaşayacaktı.
    Kırmızıda geçmeseydim, kadın yaşayacaktı.
    Are all different ways of saying: If I hadn't passed on the red light, the lady would have still lived.

Turkish Inferential (Indefinite) Form varmış, yokmuş

The Inferential Suffix -miş -muş is used Present and the Past tenses:

  • varmış It seems that there is / was
  • yokmuş It seems that there isn't / wasn't

These are used when the speaker has no dırect eyewitness knowledge.

It is used for reporting and stories.

Turkish Inferential Questions with var and yok

  • var mıymiş? Is there? Are there?
    [do think that..?]
  • yok muymuş? Isn't there? aren't there?
    [at all...?]

The English words in (brackets) showing "doubt"
are all understood by the -miş Inferentıal Suffıx

  • Deniyor ki tepede bir lokanta varmış, öyleyse orada yiyelim.
    It is said there is a cafe on the hill, if so let us eat there.
  • Mehmet dedi ki "Ağaçta çok meyve varmış."
    Mehmet said (that) "There is a lot fruit on the tree."
  • Garajda araba yokmuş.
    (I think that) there is not a car in the garage.
  • Yeşil kutuda kibrit yokmuş. Mavi olanına bakın.
    [mavi olan-ı-n-a = to the one which is blue]
    (I think that) there are no matches in the green box. Have a look in the blue one.
  • "bir varmış, bir yokmuş" "Once upon a time"

Turkish varken, yokken suffixed with -ken while

var + iken whilevarken while / as there is

yok + ikenyokken while / as there isn't

  • Tepede bir lokanta varken, başkasını açmıyorlar.
    While there is a cafe on the hill, they will not open another one.
  • Ağaçta çok meyve varken, onu koparalım.
    While there is a lot fruit on the tree, let us pick it.
  • Hazır garajda araba yokken haydi oraya bisikletimizi bırakalım.
    As there is not a car in the garage then let us leaveour bicycles to there.
  • Bu kutuda kibrit yokken, ateşi yakamam.
    As there are no matches in this box, I cannot light the fire.

Turkish - Enumerating with var and yok

  • When enumerating lists of things var or yok must be used after each item.
  • The English greengrocer says We have apples, tomatoes, onions, cherries
  • The Türk manav wıll say elma var, domates var, soğan var, kiraz var

Turkish: Answering questions with Var and Yok.

For Questions containing var mı? or yok mu?

Answers must always contain var or yok

English uses Yes or No as an answer.

Turkish does use the single words hayır no or evet yes in answer to var mi? yok mu?

  • Question:
    Dolapta bir bardak yok mu? Isn't there a tumbler in the cupboard?
  • Answer:
    var / evet var or yok / hayır yok accordingly.
  • Question:
    Kilitte anahtar var mı? Is the key in the lock?
  • Answer:
    var or yok accordingly.

English answers can be:
Yes [it is]. or No [it isn't].

Turkish answers must be:
var there is or yok there isn't

Ownership in Turkish - "I have/haven't got"

There is no verb to have or to have got in Turkish.

To say: "to have something"

"I have a new car."
"Have you got a new car?"
"Do you have any anything cheaper?"

Turkish uses:
var, vardır for "to have (got)"

yok, yoktur for "not to have (got)"

To say "I have (got) a cat."

The possessed item is suffixed with the Personal Pronoun adjectives:

-im -in-(s)i -imiz -iniz -leri my, your, his, our their

  • kedim var
    [kedi + m var.]
    [Lit: There is a my cat]
    I have (got) a cat.
  • gözlüğünüz yok
    [gözlüğ + ünüz yok]
  • You haven't got any spectacles.
    [Lit: There isn't any your spectacles.]
    [Eng: "You don't wear glasses]

The Possessive Adjective suffixs -im -ünüz tells us "whose objects exist or not."

The Stand Personal Pronouns can be added for emphasis using the Ownership Condition:

  • Benim evim var.
    I have a house.
  • Senin ablan var.
    You have an elder sister.
  • Onun şapkası yokmuş.
    (It seems) He has not got a hat.
  • Bizim evimizin [ev-imiz-in] bahçesi yok.
    Our house has not got a garden.
  • Sizin büyük köpeğiniz vardı.
    You used to have a large dog.
  • AK Bankasiyla onların kredisi var.
    They have got credit the AK Bank.
Positive Ownershipvar - "have (got)"
kedim var
[kedi-m var]
I have (got) a cat.
köpeğin var
[köpeğ-in var]
You have a dog.
arabası var
[araba-s-ı var]
He / she has a car.
evimiz var
[ev-imiz var]
We have a house.
bahçeniz var
[bahçe-niz var]
You have a garden.
şişeleri var
[şişe-leri var]
They have a bottle(s).
Negative Ownershipyok - "not have"
kedim yok
[kedi-m yok]
I have not have a cat.
köpeğin yok
[köpeğ-in yok]
You do not have a dog.
arabası yok
[araba-s-ı yok]
He/she doesn't have a car.
evimiz yok
[ev-imiz yok]
We do not have a house.
bahçeniz yok
[bahçe-niz yok]
You have not got a garden.
şişeleri yok
[şişe-leri var]
They do not have any bottle(s).

Turkish Ownership Questions: "Have you got a…?

  • The question tag -mi? -mu? is added.
  • var mı? "Is there? Are there?"
  • yok mu? "Isn't there?, Aren't there?"
  • Evin var mı?
    Have you got a house?
    [Lit: Is there a your house?]
  • Kedisi var mı?
    Has he/she got a cat?
  • Arabaları var mı?
    Have they got a car?
  • Kitabımız yok mu?
    Haven't we got a book?
  • Kız arkadaşın yok mu?
    Haven't you got a girlfriend?
  • Iyi bir sebebim yok mu?
    Haven't I got a good reason?

Examples of Possession in Turkish

The Conditional and Inferential senses of varsa, varmış, yoksa, yokmuş can be used with the Possessive Forms.

  • Yeni bir arabanız var mı?
    Have you got a new car?
  • Yeni bir arabamız olsaydı, beraber kasabaya gidebilecektik?
    If we had a new car, we could have gone to town together?
  • Orhan'ın yeni arabası varmış.
    (It seems that) Orhan has/had a new car.
  • Şekeriniz var mı, lütfen?
    Do you have any sugar, please?
  • Şekeriniz yoksa, sade içeyim.
    If you do not have sugar, I'll drink it without.
  • Boş vaktimiz var mı?
    Have we got time to spare?
  • Boş vakitleri/zamanları olsaydı, bize gelirdiler.
    If they had had time, they would have come to us.
  • Cevabı yok.
    He/She hasn't got the answer.
  • Cevabı yoksa.
    If He/She hasn't got the answer.
  • Elmaları yok
    They haven't got any apples.
  • Elmaları yokmuş.
    (It seems that) they haven't got any apples.
  • Elmaları yok mu?
    Haven't they got any apples?
  • Mehmet'in kedisi var.
    Mehmet has got a cat.
  • Mehmet'in kedisi varken, köpeğimi onunla bırakamam.
    While Mehmet has got a cat, I cannot leave my dog with him.
  • Sadece az param var.
    I've only a little money.
  • Ali 'nin parası var mı?
    Has Ali got any money?
  • Yeterli param varsa, yeni araba alırım.
    If I have enough money, I'll buy a new car.
  • Ama o kadar yokmuş gibi geliyor.
    But it seems that (like) I have not got that much (money)

Var and Yok Personalised

The verb to be "I am, you are" are suffixed

varımI am there , I'll be thereyokumI am not there , I'll not be there
varsınYou are there , You will be thereyoksunYou are not there, You will not be there
o varHe / She / It is there, He will be thereo yokHe is not there, He will not be there
varızWe are there, We will be thereyokuzWe are not there, We will not be there
varsınızYou are there, You will be thereyoksunuzYou are not there, You will not be there
varlarThey are there, They will not be thereyoklarThey are not there, They will not be there

When stating the future olmak to become can also be used:

var olacağım I will be there.

The shorter way as in the table above is used in conversation.

Turkish Present Conditional Personalised - varsa, yoksa

Varsa and Yoksa If I'm there, If I'm not there
varsamIf I am there, I'll be thereyoksamI am not there, If I'll not be there
varsan If you are there, If you'll be thereyoksanIf you are not there, If you will not be there
varsaIf he is there am there, If he'll be be thereyoksaIf he is not there, If he will not be there
varsakIf we are there, If we'll be thereyoksakIf we are not there, If we will not be there
varsanız If you are there, If you'll be thereyoksanızIf you are not there, If you will not be there
varsalarIf they are there, If they will be thereyoksalarIf they are not there, If they will not be there

Turkish Past Conditional Personalised: olsaydı, olmasaydı

Turkish past conditions with var and yok are replaced by the verb olmak to be/become

olsaydımIf I'd been thereolmasaydımIf I'd not been there
olsaydınIf you had been thereolmasaydınIf you not been there
olsaydıIf he had been thereolmasaydıIf he had not been there
olsaydıkIf we had been thereolmasaydıkIf we had not been there
olsaydınızIf you had been thereolmasaydınızIf you had not been there
olsaydılarIf they had been thereolmasaydılarIf they had not been there

Turkish Inferential (indefinite) Personalised miş forms - varmış, yokmuş

Varmış and Yokmuşthe Indefinite miş form.
varmışımpossibly I am/was there
I'll be there
yokmuşumpossibly I am / was not there, I'll not be there
varmışsınpossibly you are / were there, you'll be thereyokmuşsunpossibly you are were not there, you'll not be there
varmışpossibly he is / was there, he'll be thereyokmuşpossibly he is was not there, he'll not be there
varmışızpossibly we are / were there, we'll be thereyokmuşuzpossibly we are / were not there. we'll not be there
varmışsınızpossibly you are / were not there, you'll not be thereyokmuşsunuzpossibly you are / were not there, you'll not be there
varmışlarpossibly they are / were there, they'll be thereyokmuşlarpossibly they are / were not there,they'll not be there

This form is in constant use:

I am there, I was there, I'll be there, I'll not be there, etc.

Var and Yok examples Personalised

  • Yarın ofiste yokum.
    I will not be at the office tomorrow.
  • Evde var mısın?
    Are you at home?
  • Kimse var mı?
    Is anybody there?
  • Kimse yok.
    There is nobody (here).
  • Yalnız mıyız?
    Are we alone?
  • Hayır. Onlar da var..
    No, there's them as well..
  • Gelecek toplantıda ben de varım.
    I'll be at the next meeting as well.

Turkish Idiomtic Use of var & yok

When talking about interference into an issue:

varım varsın var varız varlar
"I'm in" "We're up for it!" etc.

yokum, yoksın, yok, yokuz yokları

"I'm out (of it)!" "They are not up yo it!"

  • Question:
    Bugün balık avı var mısın?
    Are you in for (going) fishıng today?
  • Answers:
    Evet, ben varım.
    Yes, I am!
  • Hayır, ben yokum. No, I am not!
The Turkish TV show where the contestant has to decide between a cash offer or to "Open the Box"

It is called "Var mısın? Yok musun?" Are you In or Out!

Turkish Idomatic Var Yok examples.

  • Neyimiz var neyimiz yok depremde kaybettik.
    We lost everything what we had / have in the earthquake.
  • Could also be stated thus:
  • Varımızı yoğumuzu depremde kaybettik.
    We lost everything what we had / have in the earthquake.
  • [yoğ-umuz-u softens -k to when suffixed]
  • Vaktin varsa, sonra görüşelim.
    If you have time, let's meet later on
  • Saat onda ofiste yokmuşsun.
    It seems you were not at the office at 10 o'clock.
Finally, the Yok Yok Shop
What's in a name?
The yok yok bazaar

Does this shop really belie its name?

The shop with no stock?

You would be wrong in that assumption!

The yok yok "nothing doesn't exist!"
Consequently "everything exists!"

Bugün pazara gittim, pazarda yok yoktu.
I went to market today, there wasn't anything NOT available.