Hindi : An Essential Grammar book cover
2nd Edition

An Essential Grammar

ISBN 9781032163048
Published September 21, 2022 by Routledge
298 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Hindi: An Essential Grammar is a practical reference guide to the core structures and features of modern Hindi. Assuming no prior knowledge of Hindi grammar, this book avoids jargon and overly technical language as it takes the student through the complexities of Hindi grammar in short, readable sections.

Suitable for either independent study or for students in schools, colleges, universities and adult education classes, key features include:

  • Full examples throughout in both Devanagari and Roman script with a gloss in English
  • Glossary of technical terms and detailed subject index
  • Cross referencing between sections
  • Authentic material provided in the appendix demonstrating grammar usage

Hindi: An Essential Grammar will help students, in both formal and non-formal education and of all levels to read, speak and write the language with greater confidence and accuracy.

The revised edition rectifies the printing errors inadvertently made in the first edition; it also further clarifies several other issues including Hindi word order flexibility, compound nouns, ergativity, pronominal usage and polite communication.

Table of Contents






Part 1: Hindi and its sentence types

1. Hindi: a brief introduction

2. Hindi sentence structure

3. Negatives

4. Questions

5. Imperatives and politeness

6. Exclamations

Part 2: Words: nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs

7. Nouns

8. More about Nouns

9. Nouns, Verbs, Adjectives and Adverbs

10. Verbs

11. More about Verbs

12. Verbs, Adjectives and Adverbs

13. Adjectives

14. Adverbs

Part 3: More about Words


16. Compounds

17. Causatives

Part 4: Invariant Words

18. Personal Pronouns

19. Other Pronouns

20. Postpositions

21. Emphatic Particles

22.Other Invariant words

Part 5: More about Hindi sentences

23. Habitual Aspect

24. The Progressive Aspect

25. Passive

26. The subjunctive and Future

27. The Ergative Pattern

28. Possession

29. Experiencer Subject

30. Verb caahiye

31. Compound Verbs

Part 6: Compound and complex sentences

32. Coordination and Subordination

33. Complex Sentences

34. Relative Clauses

35. Infinitives and Participles

Part 7: Sounds and script

36. Hindi Sounds and writing system: vowels.

37. Consonantal Sounds

38. Nasals and Nasalisation

39. Syllabic Structure.

Appendix: Grammar in Context.




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Rama Kant Agnihotri retired as Professor and Head, Dept of Linguistics, University of Delhi. He received his D. Phil from the University of York (UK). He has lectured extensively in universities across the world and his previous publications among others include Second Language Acquisition: Socio-cultural and Linguistic Aspects of English in India (edited with A.L. Khanna, 1994), Hindi Morphology: A Word-based Description (with Rajendra Singh, 1997), Noam Chomsky: The Architecture of Language (edited with N. Mukherjee and B. N. Patnaik, 2001) and Being and Becoming Multilingual: Some Narratives (edited with Rajesh Sachdeva, 2022). He is currently Professor Emeritus at Vidya Bhawan Society, Udaipur.


"The most appealing aspect of Agnihotri’s grammar is its clear conception of its own objectives and functions. For speakers of Hindi, it is an exposition of the systematicity and rule-governed nature of their language; for learners of Hindi, it is an instrument to further the learning of the language. In its jargon-free description of the patterns of Hindi grammar, the volume doubles up as an introduction to modern grammatical analysis for anyone trying their hand at grammar construction. In doing so, it produces an analytical learner/speaker who is not merely a user of language, but also its student." (Kidwai 2007: 149)

"Agnihotri’s examples quite naturally draw on as wide a range of lexical resources and contexts that an average Hindi speaker would be expected to have access to. The accompanying observations on the conditions of use of the examples, and in the Appendix on Grammar in Context, is also particularly worthy of commendation, as they not only relieve the work of the usual accusations of prescriptivism that grammars typically attract, they also reveal to the reader how grammatical analysis enriches our understanding of the social and the symbolic." (Kidwai 2007: 150)

Prof Ayesha Kidwai, Professor of Linguistics at the Centre for Linguistics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi