The Sanskrit Language
作者:Walter Harding Maurer

Lesson 6

Lesson 6

Past Passive Participle

Exercise Page 94


Past Passive Participle

A participle is an adjective formed from a verb. A past passive participle (PPP) is an adjective that describes the object of an action that occurred in the past. In English, the PPP is usually formed by adding the suffix '-ed' or '-en' to a verb. For example, the PPP of the verb 'conquer' is 'conquered'. In the sentence "The conquered king returns to the palace", the PPP 'conquered' describes the king, which is the object of the action of conquering that occurred in the past.

In Sanskrit, the PPP is usually formed by adding the suffix 'त/इत' or '' directly onto the root. Like with gerunds and infinitives, is usually added to roots ending in vowels and इत is usually added to roots ending in consonants. However these are very general rules and it is better to become familiar with PPP forms of common roots through the exercises. The PPP of the root 'जि' (conquer) is 'जित'. Hence the sentence above in Sanskrit would be "जितः नृपः प्रासादं प्रत्यागच्छति".

TIP: As an adjective, a PPP must agree in gendernumber, and case with the noun it describes. A PPP describing a masculine noun will decline like देव, neuter like फल, and feminine like कन्या.

As a verb form, a PPP can be connected to nouns as its location, instrument, and so on. As with other verb forms (gerunds, infinitives, past and present tense), the nouns connected to a PPP will usually occur before the PPP. For example, "युद्धे जितः नृपः प्रासादं प्रत्यागच्छति" means "The king conquered in battle returns to the palace". The third case is used to indicate the agent of the verb denoted by the PPP. For example, "युद्धे शूरेण जितः नृपः प्रासादं प्रत्यागच्छति" means "The king conquered in battle by the hero returns to the palace".

Just as with other adjectives, when a PPP (and the noun it describes) are in first case, and no main verb is present in the sentence, the appropriate form of the verb 'be' can be supplied. For example, "
नृपः जितः" means "The king wasconquered". Effectively, a sentence in the passive voice is produced in this way. This kind of usage is very common in Sanskrit. Sometimes a neuter singular PPP is used to describe an entire quotation or idea rather than just a noun. For example "प्रासादं गच्छामि इति निर्णीतम्" means "'I am going to the palace,' was decided".

Finally, even though a PPP is usually 
passive, i.e. it describes theobject of the verb it denotes, when a PPP is formed from an intransitive verb, i.e. a verb like 'go', 'come', etc. that has no object, a PPP actually has an active meaning. For example, the PPP of 'आ-गम्' (come), 'आगत' describes the noun that has done the coming. The sentence "आगतः तापसः नृपं वदति" means "The come ascetic tells the king" or "The ascetic who has cometells the king". When used without a main verb, the PPP of an intransitive verb is equivalent to an imperfect tense verb. For example "तापसः अागतः" means "The ascetic was come" or simply "The ascetic came". Therefore "तापसः आगतः" equals "तापसः आगच्छत्".


The suffix -अर्थम् can be added to any noun to form an indeclinable word meaning 'for the purpose of (the noun)'. For example, रक्षा means 'protection' so रक्षा + अर्थम् = रक्षार्थम् means 'for the purpose of protection'. Adding -अर्थम् is equivalent to putting the noun in fourth case, however it is commonly used in Sanskrit in place of the fourth case.

There are three important sandhi rules that may be applicable in the addition of -
अर्थम् to a noun:

NOTE: Three sandhi rules may be applicable in the addition of -अर्थम् to a noun:

  • When अ/आ is followed      by अ/आ,      both are together replaced by , e.g. रक्षा + अर्थम् = रक्षार्थम्

  • When इ/ई is      followed by any vowel, इ/ई is replaced by य्, e.g. शक्ति + अर्थम् = शक्त्यर्थम्

  • When उ/ऊ is      followed by any vowel, उ/ऊ is replaced by व्, e.g. बहु + अर्थम् = बह्वर्थम्