Serbian conditional mood and the verbs “Trebati”, “Sviđati se”

In English one can say “I would do, you would do, he would do” and so on, in Serbian one can say so too – this is conditional mood. In this lesson we will learn how to use conditional mood in Serbian language.

In order to form this mood, we need to memorize conjugation of BITI – to be in this special form:

Ja bihI would
Ti biYou would
On, ona, ono biHe, she, it would
Mi bismoWe would
Vi bisteYou would
Oni, one, ona biThey would

And now look how to use it:

Pronoun + BITI in conditional form + verb in past tense

Ja bih radio – I would do

Ona bi putovala – she would travel

Vi biste kupili ovo? – Would you buy it?

Ko bi me pokazao kao ga koristiti? – Who would show me how to use it?

Šta bij radio bez tebe? – What would I do without you?

Bilo bi bolje ako ćemo zaspati ranije – It would be better if we go to sleep earlier

Ne bih te rekao ništa – I would not tell tell you anything

Šta bi hteo da dobiš na rođendan? – What do you want to get for birthday?

Bismo voleli da zaradimo mnogo – We would love to earn much

How to say “To need” in Serbian – the verb TREBATI

TREBATI – to need, and this verb is used in a special way. In order to say “to need” in Serbian

When we use TREBATI as a modal verb, we do it like this, everything is easy here, just personal pronoun + treba da:

Ja treba daI need to
Ti treba daYou need to
On, ona, ono treba daHe, she, it needs to
Mi treba daWe need to
Vi treba daYou need to
Oni, one, ona  treba daThey need to

And when we use TREBATI in sense of needing something, we need to figure out how its conjugation works. Actually, TREBATI is a reflexive verb without reflexive particle –se.

Ja trebamI am needed
Ti trebašYou are needed
On, ona, ono trebaHe, she, it is needed
Mi trebamoWe are needed
Vi trebateYou are needed
Oni, one, ona trebajuThey are needed

So, when we say “I need”, we have to use trebati in appropriate form + short variant of personal pronoun in dative case. Look how to use it in practice:

Treba mi jedna stvar – I need one thing (stvar – thing)

Trebaju mi mnogo stvari – I need many things

Ti trebaš mi – I need you (literally: you are needed to me)

Danas vi trebate mi – I need you today (literally: today you are needed to me)

Šta te treba? – What do you need? (literally: what is needed to you?)

Nam ni treba ništa* – We don’t need anything (literally: nothing is needed to us)

*- Notice that Serbian language uses double negation. It means that while in English one says “I don’t do anything”, in Serbian the same phrase has a form like “I don’t do nothing” and it means the same.

How to like in Serbian – the verb SVIĐATI SE

Sviđati se – to like, but literal translation is “to be pleased by”, or “to be liked”. Let’s consider its conjugation and how to use it properly:

Ja sviđam seI am liked
Ti sviđas seYou are liked
On, ona sviđa seHe, she is liked
Mi sviđamo seWe are liked
Vi sviđate seYou are liked
Oni, one, ona sviđaju seThey are liked

And here is a standard formula for using this verb:

Sviđati se + pronoun in dative case

Sviđa mi se – I like

Sviđa ti se – You like

Da li se vam sviđa? – Do you like it?

Joj se sviđa – She likes

Sviđa mu se – He likes

Da li se im sviđa? – Do they like?

Sviđa mi se tvoja slika – I like your picture

Da li im se sviđa naša ideja? – Do they like our idea?

Exercises

Use TREBATI or SVIĐATI SE

  1. _________________ da znam to – I need to know it
  2. Ona ________________ – He needs her
  3. Da li oni ________________? – Will you(vi) need them?
  4. Čija pomoć ________________? – Whose help do you (ti) need?
  5. _____________________ _________________ posebna hrana – My cat (moja mačka) needs a special food
  6. Da li _______________________________ dodatne usluge – Do you (vi) need additional services?
  7. Šta _______________________ ovde? – What do they need here?
  8. ______________________ spavati mnogo – I like to sleep a lot
  9. _______ _____________________ probuditi se kasno? – Who likes to wake up late?
  10. Šta ______________________ raditi najviše? – What do you(ti) like to do the most?
  11. __________ ___________________ šetati u centru Beograda – They like to walk in the center of Belgrade
  12. Ovim ljudima ne ________________________ ništa – These people don’t like anything
  13. Zašto toliko mnogima strancima ____________________ Srpski jezik? – Why do so many foreigners like Serbian language
  14. Ima muzika koja ________________ svima – There is a music that everybody likes
  15. __________ __________________ plesati kod clubnu muziku? – Who likes to dance with club music?

Answers

1: treba mi; 2: mu treba; 3: vam treba; 4: ti treba; 5: mojej mačke treba; 6: vam trebaju; 7: im treba; 8: sviđa mi se; 9: kome se sviđda; 10: ti treba; 11: im se sviđa; 12: se sviđa; 13: sviđa se; 14: se sviđa; 15: kome se sviđa.

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