-tavya, -anīya, and -ya

Also known as: the gerundive, the future passive participle, the potential participle, kṛtyāḥ

The suffixes tavya, anīya, and ya all create adjectives, and they all have the same meaning. When added to a root that means “X,” they all mean “should or must be X-ed” or “able to be X-ed.”

Here are some examples:

  • त्वया वनं गन्तव्यम्
    tvayā vanaṃ gantavyam.
    By you, the forest must be gone to. (literal translation)
    You must go to the forest. (natural translation)

  • मृगो न हन्तव्यः
    mṛgo na hantavyaḥ.
    The deer must not be killed.

bhāve prayoga

These suffixes often express bhāve prayoga. When they do, they use the neuter case 1 singular:

  • योद्धव्यम्
    There should or must be fighting.

Here is an example from the Bhagavad Gita:

  • कैर् मया सह योद्धव्यम्
    kair mayā saha yoddhavyam
    With whom and me must there be fighting? (literal translation)
    With whom must I fight? (natural translation)


Also known as: tavya or tavyat

To add -tavya, we follow the same rules as -tum. As usual, some roots use iṭ and some do not:

  • नी → नेतव्य
    nī → netavya
    should or must be led

  • वन्द् → वन्दितव्य
    vand → vanditavya
    should or must be venerated

And as usual, roots that end in consonant sounds might undergo many sandhi changes:

  • बुध् → बोद्धव्य
    budh → boddhavya

  • युध् → योद्धव्य
    yudh → yoddhavya


Also known as: anīyar

-anīya strengthens the root's vowel to the medium level. Otherwise, it does not cause any special sound changes.

  • कृ → करणीय
    kṛ → karaṇīya
    do → should or must be done

  • दृश् → दर्शनीय
    dṛś → darśanīya
    do → should or must be seen


Also known as: yat, ṇyat, kyap, ...

-ya causes various sound changes. Here are some examples:

  • गै → गेयम्
    gai → geyam
    sing → should or must be sung

  • पा → पेयम्
    pā → peyam
    drink → should or must be drunk

  • लभ् → लभ्य
    labh → labhya
    obtain → should or must be obtained

  • शक् → शक्य
    śak → śakya
    be able to → able to be done, possible

  • सह् → सह्य
    sah → sahya
    endure → endurable

  • कृ → कार्य
    kṛ → kārya
    do → should or must be done