Definition 2024



See also: تؤذن



Dari بودن
Iranian Persian بودن
Tajik будан (budan)

بودن (budan) (present stem باش (bâš))

  1. to be (See the Usage Notes)
  2. to exist


Usage notes

The conjugation of بودن with the stem باش derived herefrom is used mainly in formal or literary contexts, or universally in non-present constructions. Elsewhere, and in some constructions universally, two additional sets of verb inflections are used. Both these sets are defective, lacking an infinitive, clearly-defined stem, and inflections other than those in the present indicative.

The first is a short form which may be used as a general copula, placed directly after its predicate, but except in participle constructions, is considered less formal. It is conjugated as such (Note: In the tables, hover mouse over Arabic script for transliterated pronunciation):

After a sounded consonant:

Present Indicative singular plural
1st person م یم
2nd person ی ید
3rd person *است ند
  • Note: است is not connected.

After the short vowel ە:

Present Indicative singular plural
1st person ام ایم
2nd person ای/*ء اید
3rd person است اند
  • Note: This hamzeh (ء) is put above the ە as such: ﮤ.

After a long vowel ا/و/ی:

Present Indicative singular plural
1st person ئم ئیم
2nd person ئی ئید
3rd person *ست ئند
  • Note: Preceding vowel sound is applied
  • Also, a normal ی is often used instead of the more traditional ئ-form.

The second alternative form of to be is a longer form based on a stem هست (hast), which, though seemingly inflected as a past verb (it takes no 'د' ending in the 3rd-person singular), bears a present-tense meaning just as the shorter form above does, but is more existential and formal in tone. Also, although the shorter form is either partially or wholly affixed to its predicate, this longer form is written separately; it is conjugated as such:

Present Indicative singular plural
1st person من هستم ما هستيم
2nd person تو هستی شما هستيد
3rd person او / وی / آن هست ایشان / آنان / آنها هستند

The negative forms of both alternative forms of to be are made by means of prefixing the forms of هست with the negative indicative prefix ﻧَ (na), which assimilates and blends with the beginning of the هست-forms to form a negative stem نيست (nist). Suffixed with the personal endings, this stem yields the following negative inflections of the alternative forms of to be:

Present Indicative singular plural
1st person من نيستم ما نيستيم
2nd person تو نيستی شما نيستيد
3rd person او / وی / آن نيست ایشان / آنان / آنها نيستند



  • Mace, John (2003) Persian Grammar, New York: RoutledgeCurzon, pages 95–99
  • Hayyim, Sulayman (1934–1936), boodan”, in New Persian–English dictionary, Teheran: Librairie-imprimerie Beroukhim
  • Steingass, Francis Joseph (1892), budan”, in A Comprehensive Persian–English dictionary, London: Routledge & K. Paul