HandsOnTurkish blog

News and articles relating to Turkish business and culture as well as project updates

Learning Turkish with an iPad or tablet

Learning Turkish with an iPad or tablet

We are often asked if it is possible to learn Turkish on an iPad or tablet with Hands On Turkish. The answer is yes. You only need to follow these simple steps. 1. Download and install the Puffin browser. The Puffin Browser is a mobile browser which has been developed...

Reflections on Becoming Bilingual

Reflections on Becoming Bilingual

It has become common knowledge that knowing more than one language is good for the brain. It improves mental flexibility and makes it easier to switch between tasks. I recently attended a fascinating talk on bilingualism which was part of the University of Edinburgh’s...

Verbal Adjectives in Turkish

Verbal Adjectives in Turkish

Usually verbal adjectives, just like normal adjectives in Turkish, modify a “headword” – which is usually the noun that comes after it. Normal adjective: Tatlı kız – sweet girl Verbal adjective: Tatlı olan kız. – The girl who is sweet. Verbal adjective: Evleneceğim...

Turkish Etiquette – Do’s and Don’ts in Turkey

Turkish Etiquette – Do’s and Don’ts in Turkey

Paying separately in the restaurant -  uncommon. Wanting to pay separately when you go to a restaurant could be interpreted that you want nothing to do with the people around you. It is, therefore, common in Turkey that everyone pays the quoted price together. The...

Visiting a Turkish Hammam

Visiting a Turkish Hammam

Turkish baths: places for socialising, relaxing and purifying body and soul Turkish baths, called hammams (Turkish: hamam), became popular in Turkey in the 7th century and are an export of the Roman Empire. They were places of cleanliness, for purifying body and soul....

Verbal nouns in Turkish

Verbal nouns in Turkish

In the dictionary, all verbs in Turkish end with the stem -mek or -mak, according to vowel harmony. To make a verbal noun out of a verb, we usually take off the -mek or -mak, and add -me or -ma – in effect merely removing the k at the end. So yüzmek is to swim, but...

The Present Tense in Turkish

The Present Tense in Turkish

There are two main present tenses in Turkish: -iyor and -er/ir. -İyor is a present continuous tense, like “is doing”. The -İ changes according to vowel harmony but the o never changes, so all additional vowels added onto -iyor harmonise on that basis. Okuyor. –...

Surprising facts about Turkish Delight

Surprising facts about Turkish Delight

What is Turkish Delight? Turkish delight or lokum is a family of confections  They consist of small, fragrant cubes of jelly, traditionally flavoured with rosewater, orange flower water or lemon juice and dusted with icing sugar. Premium varieties consist largely of...

Expressing ability and inability in Turkish

Expressing ability and inability in Turkish

To change a verb to indicate ability or inability, add -ebil or -eme respectively before the tense ending. The -i in -ebil does not change in accordance with vowel harmony, so all additional elements harmonise on -i. However, -eme can become -ama in accordance with...

Three Language Learning Hacks

Three Language Learning Hacks

Learning a language is one of the most fascinating endeavours you can undertake, enabling you to delve into the intricacies of human communication and allowing you to interact with far-off peoples and cultures. However, let’s face it, this can also be a most...

Expressing possession in Turkish (Part 2)

Expressing possession in Turkish (Part 2)

Please make sure you have read Part 1 of Expressing possession in Turkish. A different form of expressing possession in Turkish comes when a noun is used to modify another noun. In that case, the third person possessive marker on the first noun is dropped, but the...

Expressing possession in Turkish (Part 1)

Expressing possession in Turkish (Part 1)

Possession in English is dealt with in two ways: you can say “the Queen of England” or “England’s Queen”. In Turkish, both these would be translated in the same way: “İngiltere’nin kraliçesi”. Unlike in the English “England’s Queen”, where only the person or thing...

Which past tense to use in Turkish? -miş versus -di

Which past tense to use in Turkish? -miş versus -di

The main division between past tenses in English is according to when the events happened in relation to the frame of discussion. In Turkish, however, the main division between the past tenses is according to the relationship of the teller to the information provided....