E S P E R A N T O   C O U R S E

                                Lesson One

Language is all about things (nouns) and their actions (verbs) of energetic

     One thing...        Acts on...          Another thing

     birdo               kaptas...           insekton.
     a bird              catches...          an insect.

     subject noun        verb                object noun

Esperanto is "grammar-coded" - you can tell what part each word plays
in a sentence from the word endings:

     -o                       -on
     single subject noun      single object noun

     -oj                      -ojn
     plural subject noun      plural object noun

To show when the action takes place, the verb tense (time) is changed by
putting these endings on the verb roots:

     past tense     --is      shows an action completed
     present tense  --as      describes it as it happens
     future tense   --os      action still to begin

     Birdoj         kaptis    insektojn.
     Birds          caught    insects.

     Birdoj         kaptos    insektojn.
     Birds          will-catch insects.

Every noun and every verb follows the above rules without exception.

In Esperanto, things have no gender (they are not male or female, as in
many other languages.)  There is only one word for 'the', no matter if the
noun is singular or plural, subject or object.  Therefore:

     La birdoj kaptas la insektojn.
     La birdo kaptis la insekton.

In Esperanto the word order matters less than in English.  All the
following sentences describe the same action (only the emphasis is

     Viro legas libron.       Viro libron legas.
     Libron legas viro.       Libron viro legas.
     Legas viro libron.       Legas libron viro.

                    A man reads a book.

Here are some words in Esperanto (the apostrophe indicates an incomplete
word, a root):

     Nouns                 Verbs (roots)          More nouns
     amiko (friend)        far' (do, make)        kafo (coffee)
     filo (son)            forges' (forget)       kuko (cake)
     frato (brother)       hav' (have)            lakto (milk)
     instruisto (teacher)  trink' (drink)         pano (bread)
     knabo (boy)           vend' (sell)           sukero (sugar)
     patro (father)        vid' (see)             teo (tea)

Each Esperanto letter has only one sound, always.  Here is a guide to some
of the sounds.  The stress is always on the next-to-last syllable of a

     A             E             I             O             U
     palm          there         three         glory         too

c = ts (in lots);  oj = oy (in boy);  G = g (in go)
kn are always pronounced separately: k-nabo


                           Study Aid for Lesson One

Read Lesson 1 thoroughly, but before trying the exercises below,
try these translations and check your answers with ours.

(We have supplied some words and endings to help you get started).

1.   The friend will-sell milk.


2.   Mother drinks coffee with milk and sugar.

     Patrino            -n kun      kaj

3.   The teachers forgot the tea.

               -j                -n.

4.   The boys will-make the cake.


5.   La knabinoj vidos la instruiston.  [knabinoj = girls]

6.   La instruisto vidis la knabinojn.

7.   La filoj trinkas teon sen lakto.  [sen = without]

8.   La birdoj vidis la insektojn.

After checking these sentences, do the exercises of Lesson 1.
If there is anything you do not understand, be sure to ask your tutor.

We will try to be prompt, but be patient, and most of all:
Bonvenon al Esperanto (Welcome to Esperanto)!

Answers to the above exercises

1.   La amiko vendos lakton.
2.   Patrino trinkas kafon kun lakto kaj sukero.
3.   La instruistoj forgesis la teon.
4.   La knaboj faros la kukon.
5.   The girls will see the teacher.
6.   The teacher saw the girls.
7.   The sons drink tea without milk.
8.   The birds saw the insects.

__________________________ PRACTICE ____________________________

                         Ekzercoj, Leciono Unu (Exercises, Lesson One)

Take your time and translate the following sentences into Esperanto.

     Examples: The  men    sold    cakes.
               La   viroj  vendis  kukojn.

               The  man    sold  a cake.
               La   viro   vendis  kukon.

[Note: the word 'a' does not exist in Esperanto; the simple noun is enough.
Also, a dash indicates that the two English words are translated by one
Esperanto word.]

1.   Father makes a cake.

2.   The boy will-have the sugar.

3.   The son forgot the milk.

4.   The boys drink tea.

5.   The friend sold the bread.

6.   The teacher sees a boy.

7.   The son has a friend.

8.   The brother made bread.

9.   The boys will-have cake.

10.  Father forgot the sugar.

11.  The boys had friends.

12.  The sons saw the bread.

13.  The brothers sell sugar.

14.  The teacher forgets the boy.

15.  The friend will-drink milk.

16.  The sons are-making cakes.

17.  Father will-sell the cake.

18.  The friend had bread.

19.  The boys will-see the teachers.

20.  The teachers drink coffee.



0    nulo (say: noo-lo)
1    unu (say:  oo-noo)            flava (FLAH-vah)    yellow
2    du (say:  doo)                verda (VER-dah)     green
3    tri (say:  t-ri)              blua (BLOO-ah)      blue
4    kvar                          blanka (BLAN-ka)    white
5    kvin                          nigra (NEE-gra)     black
6    ses                           griza (GREE-zah)    grey
7    sep                           bruna (BROO-nah)    brown
8    ok                            ruĝa (ROO-djah)    red
9    naŭ (say: now)              ("ĝ" as in "gem", "gentle")
10   dek
11   dek unu
20   dudek
21   dudek unu
30   tridek
31   tridek unu
100  cent (say:  tsent)

On to Lesson 2!

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