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A:என்ன செய்கிறீர்கள்? ஒரு சினிமாவுக்குப் போகலாமா?

B:இப்பொழுது போகவேண்டாம். ஐந்து மணிக்குப் போகலாமே?

A:அப்பொழுது இப்பொழுது என்ன செய்யலாம்?

B:கொஞ்ச நேரம் டி.வி. பார்க்கலாம். அப்புறம் சாப்பிடலாம். இட்லி இருக்கிறது.

A:என்ன! இட்லியா? ஏது இட்லி?

B:என்னுடைய சமையல்தான்! நன்றாக இருக்கும். சாப்பிட்டுப் பாரு.

A:பார்க்கலாம்! பார்க்கலாம்! உங்கள் சமையல் இன்றைக்கு நன்றாக இருக்கிறதா இல்லையா பார்க்கலாம்.

    Grammar Notes:

    Using modal auxiliary verbs in Tamil, part I: -கூடாது, -அட்டும், -லாம்

    The Tamil modal verbs are used by attaching them to an infinitive verb (e.g., போக-கூடாது, 'Should not go'; வர-முடியும், 'able to come', etc.). They are unlike other verbs in that they do not have the full range of conjugation: they are always in the neuter singular, they have limited tense inflection. Some of them also require that the subject of the sentence be in a case other than the nominative (e.g., வேண்டு, முடி). Below we go over the modals கூடாது, அட்டும், லாம். None of these modals take tense, and none require the subject to be in a case other than the nominative.

    Asking and giving for permission: அட்டும் and லாம்

    To request or give permission ('let', 'may'), அட்டும் or லாம் is added to an infinitive verb. அட்டும் can only be used with the third person or with the first person in interrogative sentences. It may not be used with the second person or with the first person (sing. or plural) in declarative sentences.
      அவன் விட்டுக்கு வரட்டுமா
      3rd pers. masc. house-dat come(inf)-may-interoggative
      'May he come to the house?' or 'Shall we let him come to the house?'

      நான் அதை எடுக்கட்டுமா?
      1st pers. it/that-acc. take(inf.)-may-interrogative
      May I take that (it)?

    லாம் may also be used to ask for permission:

      நான் உங்களுடைய வண்டியை ஒட்டலாமா?
      1st pers. 2nd pers (obl)-poss. vehicle drive(inf)-லாம்
      May I drive your car?

    லாம் is also used as the hortative, to mean ‘let's’ or ‘shall we’:

      ஆறு மணிக்கு சாப்பிடலாம?
      six hour-dat eat(inf.)-லாம்-interrogative
      Shall we eat at six o’clock?

      முருகனைப் போய் பர்க்கலாம்.
      Murugan-acc go(avp.) see(inf.)-லாம்
      Let’s go to see Murugan.

    'Should not': using கூடாது

    The auxiliary verb for expressing ‘should/ought not’, கூடாது, is used by attaching it to an infinitive verb. The subject is in the nominative.
      நீங்கள் அங்கே உட்காரக்கூடாது
      2nd pers. there sit(inf.)-should not.
      You should not sit there.

      உள்ளே அவர் சத்தமாக பேசக்கூடாது
      Inside 3rd pers masc. noise-adv. speak(inf.)-should not.
      Inside he should not speak loudly.

      இராத்திரியில் கோபால் நடக்கக்கூடாது
      night-loc. Gopal walk(inf.)-should not.
      Gopal should not walk at night.

    Dialogue: Shall we go for a movie? unit_02/section_C/lesson02.html
    Dialogue: Send a parcel to America unit_04/section_B/lesson02.html
    Cultural Notes:

    Telling time; Good and Bad time of a day

    The question words என்ன 'what' and எத்தனை 'how many?' and எவ்வளவு 'how much' are used to query time in different contexts.

      இப்போ மணி என்ன (spoken)? 'What time is it now?'

      எத்தனை மணிக்கு நான் வரணும் (spoken)? 'At what time do I need to come?' or 'At what time should I be here?'

      எவ்வளவு நேரம் நீங்க குளிப்பீங்க spoken)? 'How long would you take for your shower?'

    The word மணி is used in the sense of o'clock (cf. time) and நேரம் in the sense of 'duration of time'. Duration can be from the range of 'seconds' to 'years'. Another word used to refer to time generally, or as seasons, is காலம்.

    Hours of the day

    Any specific time in Tamil is expressed from the hour in terms of a quarter (கால்), half (அரை) and three-quarters (முக்கால்). Unlike in English, no time is expressed to the hour. Below are some of the example times.

      ஒன்றேகால் (ஒன்னேகால்) 'one and a quarter' (1:15)

      ஒன்றரை (ஒன்னரெ) 'one and a half' (1:30)

      ஒன்றேமுக்கால் (ஒன்னேமுக்கா) 'one and three-quarters' (1:45)

    The other sub-divisions of time are marked with the word நிமிடம் or நிமிஷம் 'minute' and நொடி 'second'.

      எட்டு மணி பத்து நிமிஷம் 'eight o'clock and ten minute' (8:10)

      ஆறு மணி பத்து நிமிஷம் இரண்டு நொடி 'six o'clock, ten minute and two seconds.

    நல்ல நேரம் 'good time' and கெட்ட நேரம் 'bad time'

    In general, morning time is considered very auspicious and everyone wants their morning to have a good start. If anything bad happens in the morning, someone might worry that the whole day would end up with similar events. Store owners especially want their first few transactions to be without any problem. If anyone argues or creates a problem in the store in the morning, the owner of the store would feel very bad and might even yell at the customer saying காலங்காத்தாலெ வந்துட்டியே சாவு கிராக்கி 'you butcher! you started it right in the morning!' If anything bad happens to anyone during the day, that person might blame the person whom he/she woke up to! (இண்ணெக்கி முழிச்ச முழியே சரியில்லெ 'To whom (I) woke up to wasn't right' lit. the eye on whom (I) woke up to wasn't right). For this reason, someone might be afraid to be seen first by someone else when waking up. People also tend to look at their own face in a mirror, or even see their own palms when they wake up in the morning, just to avoid anyone else's bad luck. Tamils consult the almanac which tells about the positions of stars and planets on each day. Based on how the stars are positioned in relation to other stars, they decide whether a particular time is a good time or a bad time. One-and-a-half hour of each day is considered inauspicous (ராகுகாலம்) during which time no one would start a journey or any auspicious events like wedding, rituals etc. ராகுகாலம் is determined based on how the star ராகு comes in contact with the sun each day. Below are the ராகுகாலம் hours during the week.

      Monday (திங்கள்) 7:30 to 9am
      Saturday (சனி) 9:00 to 10:30am
      Friday (வெள்ளி) 10:30am to 12pm
      Wednesday (புதன்) 12 to 1:30pm
      Thursday (வியாழன்) 1:30 to 3pm
      Tuesday (செவ்வாய்) 3 to 4:30pm
      Sunday (ஞாயிறு) 4:30 to 6pm
    This sequence of days pertaining to ராகுகாலம் is usually remembered by the following expression:
    திருவாரூர் ன்னிதியில் வெற்றிலையும் புஷ்பமும் விற்ற செட்டியார் ஞானியானார்
    'The merchant who sold betal leaf and flowers by the side of the Thiruvarur temple became a saint'.
    This and similar other expressions are used to remember the above sequence of ராகுகாலம் days.

      Day Raghu
      (எம கண்டம் - Right time for the god of death)
      Sunday (ஞாயிறு-கிழமை) 4.30 - 6.00pm 3.00 - 4.30 12.00 - 1.30
      Monday (திங்கள்-கிழமை) 7.30 - 9.00am 1.30 - 3.00 10.30 - 12.00
      Tuesday (செவ்வாய்-கிழமை) 3.00 - 4.30pm 12.00 - 1.30 9.00 - 10.30
      Wednesday (-புதன்-கிழமை) 12.00 - 1.30pm 10.30 - 12.00 7.30 - 9.00
      Thursday (வியாழன்-கிழமை) 1.30 - 3.00pm 9.00 - 10.30 6.00 - 7.30
      Friday (வெள்ளி-கிழமை) 10.30 - 12.00pm 7.30 - 9.00 3.00 - 4.30
      Saturday (சனி-கிழமை) 9.00 - 10.30pm 6.00 - 7.30 1.30 - 3.00

    Traditional Tamil belief takes the star system very seriously and considers that everyone's life is predetermined by the positions of the stars in relation to other stars and the planets.

    Tamil Calendar

    The Tamil calendar, based on the old Hindu solar calendar, has twelve months. In general, the Tamil months start around the 14th or 15th of English months. So, each Tamil month spans between the last half and first half of every English month. The Tamil months have around 30 days. However, the number of days varies by year. For example, கார்த்திகை had 30 days in 1997 and 29 in 1998. Below are the names and dates of the Tamil months starting with the Tamil new year for 1997-2004:

      Tamil month English month 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
      சித்திரை (New year) April 14 14 14 13 13 13 14 13
      வைகாசி May 15 15 15 14 14 14 15 14
      ஆனி June 15 15 15 15 14 15 15 15
      ஆடி July 17 17 17 16 16 16 17 16
      ஆவணி August 17 17 18 16 17 17 18 17
      புரட்டாசி September 17 17 18 16 17 17 18 17
      ஐப்பசி October 17 18 18 17 17 17 18 17
      கார்த்திகை November 16 17 17 16 16 16 17 16
      மார்கழி December 16 16 16 15 15 16 16 16
      தை (Harvest month) January 14 14 15 14 14 14 15 15
      மாசி February 12 13 13 13 12 12 13 13
      பங்குனி March 14 15 15 14 14 14 15 14
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