Verbless sentences

If a sentence has no verb, we assume the verb asti by default. So, the two sentences below have essentially the same meaning:

  • रामो राजपुत्रो ऽस्ति।
    rāmo rājaputro 'sti.
    Rama is a prince.

  • रामो राजपुत्रः।
    rāmo rājaputraḥ.
    Rama (is) a prince.

Roughly, there are three types of verbless sentences. In this lesson, we will learn about these three types.

Two nominals in case 1

The most common verbless sentence has two nominals in case 1. We use this type of sentence to express that one item is another:

  • रामो राजपुत्रः।
    rāmo rājaputraḥ.
    Rama (is) a prince.

  • रामो बलवान्।
    rāmo balavān.
    Rama is strong.

Having or owning

We also commonly see sentences where one noun is in case 6. We use this type to show that one noun owns or has another:

  • दशरथस्य पुत्रः।
    daśarathasya putraḥ.
    Dasharatha has a son.

  • दशरथस्य बलम्।
    daśarathasya balam.
    Dasharatha has strength.

  • दशरथस्य नगरम्।
    daśarathasya nagaram.
    Dasharatha has a city.

  • दशरथस्य सुखम्।
    daśarathasya sukham.
    Dasharatha has happiness.
    (Less literally, “Dasharatha is happy.”)

Other sentences

We can create other verbless sentences by using special uninflected words. Here is a small example:

  • अलम् एतेन।
    alam etena.
    Enough of this.