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Your Guide to Hindi Sentence Structure and Word Order

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Placing words in the right order is quite similar to weaving pearls beautifully into a string. How would it look if the pearls were put together haphazardly? Technically, they’re still pearls in a string; yet the beauty is ruined.

The same is true for word order in a Hindi sentence structure, or in any other language for that matter. One can not speak correctly without knowing how to put words together in a sentence. Stuffing the words randomly falls under poor grammar.

The sentence structure in one language may not be the same as the word order in another. The placement and sequence of words matter a lot because not following the right pattern often leads to meaningless and confusing conversations.So, in today’s lesson, we’ll focus on Hindi sentence structure and word order.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Hindi Table of Contents
  1. Understanding the Basic Word Order in Hindi
  2. Basic Word Order with Subject, Verb, and Object
  3. Word Order with Prepositional Phrases
  4. Word Order with Modifiers
  5. Changing the Sentence into a Yes-or-No Question
  6. Translation Exercises
  7. Become Unstoppable with HindiPod101.com

1. Understanding the Basic Word Order in Hindi

Improve Pronunciation

One thing worth remembering is that in a formal conversation, the sentence structure remains fixed. However, when talking informally, native speakers use more flexible patterns.Okay, enough of the chitter chatter. Let’s ask ourselves the foundational question! What is the structure of a sentence in Hindi?

The basic Hindi sentence structure follows the SOV pattern.

Here, S = Subject, O = Object, and V = Verb. Yes, you heard that right. We have the order subject + object + verb in Hindi sentences.

1 – Subject

The subject is any person or thing which is the primary doer in the sentence, and it usually comes at the beginning of a sentence.

मैं खाता हूँ। (main khaaTaa huun.)I eat.”

Here, “I” or मैं (main) is the subject.

2 – Object

An object is a word on which the action is performed. Usually, it follows immediately after the subject and before the verb.

मैं फल खाता हूँ। (main phaL khaaTaa huun.)“I eat fruits.”

Here, “fruits” or फल (phaL) is the object.

3 – Verb

A verb is the action happening in the sentence. Contrary to the English sentence structure, in Hindi, the verb (along with the helping verb) comes at the end of the sentence.

मैं फल खाता हूँ। (main phaL khaaTaa huun.)“I eat fruits.”

Here, “eat” or खाता हूँ (khaaTaa huun) is the verb.

Word Sequences in Hindi

2. Basic Word Order with Subject, Verb, and Object

To help you understand the concept a little better, take a look at these Hindi sentence structure examples.

1 – Declarative Sentences (Formal / Fixed)

मैं फल खाता हूँ। (main phaL khaaTaa huun.)
(S + O + V)
I eat fruits.”
(S + V + O)
  • This is the simplest and most basic Hindi sentence structure, where the subject occupies the first position and is followed by the object and then the verb. Now, let’s learn the Hindi sentence structure in its flexible or informal state.

2 – Declarative Sentences (Informal / Flexible)

मैं खाता हूँ फल(main khaaTaa huun phaL.)
(S +V+O)
I eat fruits.”
(S + V + O)
  • As you can see, Hindi does show its malleable nature when used in an informal manner. Do mind, however, that the S + V + O pattern in Hindi is never used in the formal context and is frowned upon.

3 – Negative Sentences

मैं फल नहीं खाता हूँ। (main phaL Nahiin khaaTaa huun.)
(S + O + V)
I do not eat fruits.”
(S + V + O)
  • The distinguishable features in Hindi compared to English are that, in Hindi, helping verbs come at the end of the sentence; in English, they’re present in the first part of the sentence.
  • Moreover, when using Hindi word order, we have a separate word for expressing the negative condition. For instance, in the above example, “not” or नहीं (Nahiin) comes right after the object and just before the verb.

4 – Interrogative Sentence

क्या मैं फल खाता हूँ? (kyaa main phaL khaaTaa huun.)
(S + O + V)
“Do I eat fruits?”
(Auxiliary verb + S + V + O)
  • Unlike in English, the auxiliary verbs in Hindi do not come at the beginning of interrogative sentences. Instead, there are separate words for asking questions in Hindi.
Practice Hindi Word Order with Your Friends

3. Word Order with Prepositional Phrases

It’s not always possible to confine oneself to the simple Hindi sentence structure. Not only would that be boring, but we’d also be missing out on loads of other info, and the whole context would be pretty unclear.

That’s where adverbs, adjectives, and other prepositional phrases come into play. Our lesson on word order wouldn’t be complete without including some essential tips and rules on inserting additional words into a Hindi sentence. In Hindi grammar, word order with additional words would look something like this:

1 – Frequency

मैं रोज़ फल खाता हूँ। (main roz phaL khaaTaa huun.)I eat fruits daily.”

Okay, in the example above, we’ve used the adverb “daily,” which is translated as रोज़ (roz) in Hindi. It’s clear to see how the adverb of frequency रोज़ (roz) smoothly takes its place between the subject and the object.

In a similar Hindi sentence structure, you can replace it with other frequency adverbs (e.g. “occasionally” or “rarely”). Wondering about the Hindi words for these adverbs? Check out this quick list of the most popular adverbs in Hindi.

If you were thorough reading our lesson on Hindi adverbs, you’ll know that not all adverbs behave the same way. In short, one would really need to practice a lot to get a grip on this.

2 – Time

मैं शाम को फल खाता हूँ। (main saam ko phaL khaaTaa huun.)I eat fruits in the evening.”

The adverb of time is placed somewhere between the subject and the object. In case there’s no object, the time comes right between the subject and the action in the sentence.

Using the example above as a reference, we can also talk about specific times, such as:

मैं शाम को 4 बजे फल खाता हूँ। (main saam ko caar baje phaL khaaTaa huun.)I eat fruits at four p.m. in the evening.”

3 – Place

मैं रोज़ शाम को दफ़्तर में फल खाता हूँ। (main roz saam ko DafTar men phaL khaaTaa huun.)“Every evening, I eat fruit in the office.”

Again, similar to the time adverb, the words for place also happen to be present between the subject and the object / verb.

4 – Manner

मैं फल काट कर खाता हूँ। (main phaL kaat kar khaaTaa huun.)I eat fruits after cutting them.”

Suppose you want to talk about the manner in which you eat fruits. How do you do that using Hindi language word order? What would be the appropriate place to put that word in the sentence? Well, usually, it’s positioned between the object and the verb.

So, how do you like to eat fruits? Try to practice with these words:

  • धो कर (DHo kar) = “After washing”
  • छील कर (chiiL kar) = “After peeling”

5 – Multiple Objects

It’s quite natural to talk about two different things in a single Hindi sentence. For instance, a person may eat fruit with milk, in salad, or in a smoothie. In such cases, the example below will come in handy.

मैं रोज़ शाम को दूध के साथ फल खाता हूँ। (main roz saam ko DuuDH ke SaaTH phaL khaaTaa huun.)“Every evening, I eat fruits with milk.”

6 – Adjective

Life would be so colorless and flavorless without adjectives! When we’re passionate about something or wish to emphasize a particular quality of that thing, we use adjectives.In Hindi, adjectives are placed just before the object. Check out the adjective examples below and see for yourself.

मैं रोज़ ताज़े फल खाता हूँ। (main roz Taaze phaL khaaTaa huun.)I eat fresh fruits every day.”
मैं हर तरह के फल खाता हूँ। (main har Tarah ke phaL khaaTaa huun.)I eat all types of fruits.”

Are you looking for an accurate adjective meaning in Hindi along with some examples to enhance your Hindi language skills? We’ve got you covered with this amazing list of the Top 100+ Adjectives in Hindi.

4. Word Order with Modifiers

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Modifiers are the words which are used to modify any object or person in the sentence. A modifier could be an adjective, a number, or any determiner.

When modifying an English grammar sentence structure in Hindi, you can find a modifier right before the noun. However, you’ll notice that when there are two modifiers, the noun may come in between both.

Without the right examples, theory has only so much use. And thus, we’ve provided a few examples to give you an idea about the placement of modifiers in Hindi. Let’s have a look!

1 – Number

मेरे पास दो सेब हैं। (mere paaS Do Seb hain.)“I have two apples.”

As you can see, here the modifier is a number. It’s modifying the noun “apple,” or सेब (Seb), and is just before that noun.

2 – Determiners and Possessives

यह सेब मेरा नहीं है। (yah Seb meraa Nahiin hai.)“This apple is not mine.”

Now, this is an example of two modifiers in the same sentence. Here, the noun is “apple,” or सेब (Seb). The first modifier is the determiner “this,” or यह (yah), and the second modifier is the possessive “mine,” or मेरा (meraa).

In English, both modifiers are placed at the beginning and end of the sentence. But as soon as you try to translate this English grammar sentence structure into Hindi, you’ll see how the determiner remains in the original position while the possessive moves just after the object.

3 – Relative

मैंने जो सेब फ़्रिज में रखा था वो ख़राब हो गया है। (mainNe jo Seb frij men rakhaa THaa vo kharaab ho gayaa hai.)“The apple that I had kept in the fridge has gone bad.”

5. Changing the Sentence into a Yes-or-No Question

In this section, we’re going to learn how to change a simple sentence into a question. This section is going to be the easiest one in the article! 

Let us remind you again that, in Hindi, the auxiliary verbs have no special role in interrogative sentences. Instead, Hindi has separate words for asking questions.

A Woman Wondering about Something

Now, a yes-or-no question starts with “what,” or क्या (kyaa). All you need to do is use क्या (kyaa) as the first word in the sentence.In flexible (informal) structures, क्या (kyaa) may come at the end of the sentence instead.

Statement 1मुझे फल खाना पसंद है।
(mujhe phaL khaaNaa paSaND hai.)
“I like to eat fruits.”
Question
(Formal)
क्या मुझे फल खाना पसंद है?
(kyaa mujhe phaL khaaNaa paSaND hai?)
“Do I like to eat fruits?”
Question
(Informal)
मुझे फल खाना पसंद है क्या?
(mujhe phaL khaaNaa paSaND hai kyaa?)
“Do I like to eat fruits?”
Answerहाँ, मुझे फल खाना पसंद है।
(haan, mujhe phaL khaaNaa paSaND hai.)
“Yes, I like to eat fruits.”
Statement 2सेब मेरा सबसे पसंदीदा फल है।
(Seb meraa Sab Se paSaNDiiDaa phaL hai.)
“Apple is my favorite fruit.”
Questionक्या सेब मेरा सबसे पसंदीदा फल है?
(kyaa Seb meraa Sab Se paSaNDiiDaa phaL hai?)
“Is apple my favorite fruit?”
Answerहाँ, सेब मेरा सबसे पसंदीदा फल है।
(haan, Seb meraa Sab Se paSaNDiiDaa phaL hai.)
“Yes, apple is my favorite fruit.”
Statement 3मैं एक दिन में छः सेब नहीं खा सकता हूँ।
(main ek DiN men chah Seb Nahiin khaa SakaTaa huun.)
“I can not eat six apples in a day.”
Questionक्या मैं एक दिन में छः सेब खा सकता हूँ?
(kyaa main ek DiN men chah Seb khaa SakaTaa huun?)
“Can I eat six apples in a day?”
Answerनहीं, मैं एक दिन में छः सेब नहीं खा सकता हूँ।
(Nahiin, main ek DiN men chah Seb Nahiin khaa SakaTaa huun.)
“No, I can not eat six apples in a day.”

6. Translation Exercises

Alright! Now it’s time to pull up your socks and rehearse everything we’ve learned.

Step 1: Simplest Sentence (S+V)

सीमा जाती है। (Siimaa jaaTii hai.)
(S + V)
Seema goes.”
(S + V)

Step 2: Basic Sentence (S+O+V)

सीमा स्कूल जाती है। (Siimaa SkuuL jaaTii hai.)
(S + O + V)
Seema goes to school.”
(S + V + O)

Step 3: Adding an Adverb (Frequency)

सीमा रोज़ स्कूल जाती है। (Siimaa roz SkuuL jaaTii hai.)Seema goes to school daily.”

Step 4: Adding an Adverb Phrase

सीमा रोज़ सुबह स्कूल जाती है। (Siimaa roz Subah SkuuL jaaTii hai.)Seema goes to school every morning.”

Step 5: Adding Time

सीमा रोज़ सुबह 8 बजे स्कूल जाती है। (Siimaa roz Subah aath baje SkuuL jaaTii hai.)Seema goes to school every morning at eight a.m.”

Step 6: Adding Manner

सीमा रोज़ सुबह 8 बजे रिक्शा से स्कूल जाती है। (Siimaa roz Subah aath baje riksaa Se SkuuL jaaTii hai.)Seema goes to school every morning at eight a.m. by rickshaw.”

Step 7: Using the Question Form

क्या सीमा रोज़ सुबह 8 बजे रिक्शा से स्कूल जाती है? (kyaa Siimaa roz Subah aath baje riksaa Se SkuuL jaaTii hai?)“Does Seema go to school every morning at eight a.m. by rickshaw?”

7. Become Unstoppable with HindiPod101.com

We hope that by now you have a fair idea about the basic Hindi sentence structure and its word order. Feeling stuck because of a word? Don’t let lack of vocab stop you from achieving your true goals.

Sign up at HindiPod101.com, and our free online dictionary is ready for you! Search for any word and find out its meaning in both English and Hindi. And that’s not all. You’ll also get access to our world-class lesson materials and downloadable PDF sheets!

Before wrapping up, we’d like to know which step in the Hindi sentence structure was easiest for you, and which one confused you from the beginning? Is there any specific thing that’s not clear to you?

Have you tried an English-to-Hindi sentence structure yourself? Oh! We’d love to hear about it in the comment box below.

So, don’t hold yourself back. Pour your heart and mind into your studies, and with your flawless Hindi, let the world know what you’re made of!

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