5.5 Verb “To be” in the Past Tense

Past Tense of “To be” Video

Instructor Video: Verb “to be” in Past tense

In previous chapter, we learned that verb “to be” होना in Hindi has four different forms in present tense. We also learned the uses of those four forms. See the table below for a quick review.

Forms of verb “to be” होना Uses
हूँ with मैं (I).
हो with तुम (familiar you).
है with तू (informal you), यह (This, s/he), वह (That, s/he), and singular subjects.
हैं with हम (we), आप (formal you), ये (These, They), वे (Those, They), and with plural and honorific subjects.

Today, we are going to learn about the past tense forms of the verb “to be” in Hindi. There are four forms of verb “to be” in the past form. Please see the table below for forms and their uses.

Forms of verb “to be” होना Uses
था with masculine singular subjects.
थी with feminine singular subjects.
थे with masculine plural and honorific subjects.
थीं with feminine plural and honorific subjects.
Examples
Hindi English
इस कमरे में, एक लड़का (m. sing) था | There was a boy in this room.
इस कमरे में, एक कुर्सी (f. sing) थी | There was a chair in this room.
इस कमरे में दो दरवाज़े (m. plu) थे | There were two doors in this room.
इस कमरे में बहुत किताबें (f. plu) थीं | There were many books in this room.
मोहन (m. sing) स्कूल में था | Mohan was in school.
मेरे दोस्त (m. plu) बाज़ार में थे | My friends were in the market.
पिता जी (m. sing, hon) बैठक में थे | Father was in the living room.
सीता पुस्तकालय (f. sing) में थी | Sita was in the library.
मेरी बहनें (f. plu) बगीचे में थीं | My sisters were in the garden.
चाची जी (f. sing. hon) अपने कमरे में थीं | Aunt was in her room.

Activity

Please choose the correct form of the past form of verb “to be” to fill in the blanks.

धन्यवाद !

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Basic Hindi I by Rajiv Ranjan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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