In English grammar, the word participle refers to certain kinds of verbal adjectives. The following words are all examples of participles:
about to do
(has been) done
should or must be done
Roughly, a participle is just a way to show that we perform one action that is related to another:
अहं गायन् चरामि।
ahaṃ gāyan carāmi.
I walk while singing.
रामश् चरन् चखाद।
rāmaś caran cakhāda.
Rama ate while walking.
In this lesson, we will learn more about how these different participles can be used.
The most basic way to use a participle is as a normal adjective:
अहं नृत्यन् गायामि।
ahaṃ nṛtyan gāyāmi.
I sing while dancing.
अहं खादन्तं सिंहं पश्यामि।
ahaṃ khādantaṃ siṃhaṃ paśyāmi.
I see a lion (who is) eating.
Since participles are verbal adjectives, they behave somewhat like verbs. So, we can use them with other nominal words:
अहं राज्ञे नृत्यन् गायामि।
ahaṃ rājñe nṛtyan gāyāmi.
I sing while dancing for the king.
अहम् मांसम् खादन्तं सिंहं पश्यामि।
aham māṃsam khādantaṃ siṃhaṃ paśyāmi.
I see a lion (who is) eating meat.
Simultaneous action with case 7
Also known as: the locative absolute
We often use participles to show that as one action is happening, another also happens. When we use participles this way, we often imply a connection between the two actions.
Usually, we show this by using the participle and the word it describes in case 7. For example, if we have these two simple sentences:
रामो वनं गच्छति।
rāmo vanaṃ gacchati.
Rama goes to the forest.
Then we can connect them like so:
दशरथे शोचति रामो वनं गच्छति।
daśarathe śocati rāmo vanaṃ gacchati.
In Dasharatha grieving, Rama goes to the forest. (literal translation)
As Dasharatha grieves, Rama goes to the forest. (natural translation)
We can use this same structure with other participles too:
रामे वनं गमिष्यति कैकेयी हृष्यति।
rāme vanaṃ gamiṣyati kaikeyī hṛṣyati.
With Rama about to go to the forest, Kaikeyi rejoices.
रामे वनं गच्छति कैकेयी हृष्यति।
rāme vanaṃ gacchati kaikeyī hṛṣyati.
With Rama going to the forest, Kaikeyi rejoices.
रामे वनं गते कैकेयी हृष्यति।
rāme vanaṃ gate kaikeyī hṛṣyati.
With Rama gone to the forest, Kaikeyi rejoices.
Simultaneous action with case 6
Also known as: the genitive absolute
Just as we can express simultaneous actions with case 7, we can do the same with case 6. Usually, the meaning is that one action happens in spite of or even as another one occurs:
दशरथस्य शोचतो रामो वनं गच्छति।
daśarathasya śocato rāmo vanaṃ gacchati.
Even as Dasharatha grieves, Rama goes to the forest.