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Geliyorum, Geliyum, Gelim ?

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My spoken Turkish language skills are still very very bad but I am starting to understand people better, I also notice when people have regional accents and I am hearing differences (köy vs town) now. So that for me is a big step forward.

So, I know theoretically one should say "geliyorum" for "I am coming" but that I mostly hear "geliyum" but twice yesterday I heard "gelim". Is that a "dunno" for "I don't know" or is it a different verb form that I did not recognise.

Also I hear young girls from Ankara or Istanbul saying "Maarhaba" and "Aafaandaam" (instead of Merhaba and Effrendim), is this just moda trendy prententious or a specific Istanbul/Ankara accent ?

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This is a very detailed issue, but I think I can summarize it, to give a proper idea..

First of all, there is a standard Turkish. The formal Turkish and standard Turkish overlap. But even if you talk in an informal way with a friend, you still observe the rules of standard Turkish.

There are local dialects. As such, they cannot be considered as 'substandard' because, although these dialects don't correspond with formal Turkish, they have their own standards.

So when you speak Turkish in an informal way, what you do is not using a dialect. Not using substandard Turkish either.

But when a youngster says 'afandim' instead of 'efendim', this is simply substandard Turkish, a trend.

So keeping this classification in mind, 'geliyorum' is standard, and you say 'geliyorum' whatever the degree of 'informality' you use. 'Geliyom' (not geliyum), on the other hand, is rural, and part of some local dialect. Sometimes, the users of standard Turkish, including me, can use it for fun. Likewise, youngsters sometime imitate local dialects, though they don't know much about them. But they simply enjoy the absurdity they create.

I never heard someone saying 'gelim'. However, if it is 'geliyim/geliim/, then it is the quick form of 'geleyim':1- let me come2- a tense that can be explained only within a proper context, as the tenses of Turkish and English don't correspond on ever occassion.

Geleyim is formal and standard, geliim is colloquial. Except for written Turkish you can freely use it. Both are ok, in speech.

Unfortunately I forgot the tenses of French, which I had spent years to memorize their conjugations, incuding irregular verbs. If I had remembered, I could be able to compare them with Turkish for you..

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Thank you Saffron for that clear explanation. From the context, I think he must have meant geleyim. I must admit that Turkish is relatively easy when you compare it with French irregular verbs! That is why I find it so frustrating that I still don't master the language.

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I agree with you..

My first language course was French, and through all those school years I got the highest marks, because French sounded, let me use my own terms, 'logical'. The reason is that I am a Turkish speaker, the language I learnt from my mother is based on rules, definite rules, each has its own logical connection. Although Turkish has lost something from its logical nature, as spoiled by Arabic and Persian influence, this feature is still the basic feature of Turkish. Due to the texts translated from those languages , its sentence structure has lost some features which made Turkish more fluent than what it is today. I use 'standard' Turkish, but when I speak with rural people, I observe their Posted Image ning..

As their 'dialect' is more fluent, and never artificial like mine..

Yes, this is what I mean: today's 'standard' Turkish is less natural than the original one..

Maybe this is one of the reasons that make it difficult to learn. Just when you start feeling the logic behind Turkish, an artificial sentence, a mixture of the Turkish and Persian sentence structures comes along your way.

Turning back to French, yes, I found it enjoyable to study French, because, with a Turkish mind, I was able to find the rules to rely upon..

The tenses of Turkish is another area of the language which makes it very dificult to become a master of it. Because a grammar book can hardly make it easy: The time and the tense are concepts, so one needs to get a new conceptualization.

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Maybe with enough reading and listening (and dedication) Posted Image things might start to fall into place (as it were), such as what is happening with you, Vic --- good for you ! I think it helps a lot to listen to how various people talk, and learn from them, as that's how kids pick up language.

Saffron, most of us would be happy if our Turkish could get even half as good as your English ! Posted Image

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Do you really want to hear the truth? I don't think that any of our readers would like to spend as much time and effort that I have spent in a language.. But why?

I studied at a school I hated. The only thing that attracted my attention was English. One day I made up my mind: ok, I said to myself, it is better to study English than studying 'economic theory' which had nothing to do with the conditions in Turkey. Actually the first chapter of the first book of 'economics' was titled 'America Today'. I had nothing at all to do with that, actually I was there by mistake.

Indeed the time I spent with English was much more than the time devoted to 'economics'. Later I left the school, and started working for a foreign trade company, as I had discovered that the textbook English was very limited. That work helped me a great deal, when I decided to become a translator. And, as I wrote on a few occassions, later I left the translation sector permanently , when I was exhausted by the problems that are inherent in the sectorPosted Image . If I had a chance to make a brand new start, I would never think about investing my time in a language, with a professional goal...

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I haven't got the patience or inclination to try a lot of reading in Turkish, unlike you Meral, reading newspapers.

Listening in OK but I need to see things written down before they will click.

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No, I need to see them written down when I hear the words spoken. I can't wade through pages of political stuff to find words. It's easier/more interesting (?) to browse through a dictionary!

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I understand the political stuff is too tedious & boring, but news items about crimes'n'stuff (be they gory or whatever) are much easier to follow. And yep, reading a dictionary isn't a bad way to pass a bit of spare time now & again !!! :)

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