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Icelandic Verb Conjugation Chart

I've put together a concise chart for different verb endings for present and
past tense, both indicative and subjunctive moods, since both of my books
lacked one.
W(a) = weak verb, a-conjugation (regular endings)
W(i) = weak verb, i-conjugation (regular endings)
S = strong verb (root-vowel change, no ending in singular past indicative)
I = irregular verb (sometimes root-vowel change, regular endings in all past
Weak verbs and strong verbs exist in English too. In English, weak verbs are
characterized by a dental-based ending on the verb in the past tense. The
words jump/jumped, bake/baked, slap/slapped, lay/laid. English strong
verbs go through a root vowel change and have no endings in the past tense.
Examples are swim/swam, come/came, shine/shone, ride/rode.
Subject order is g / / hn / vi / i / au
Endings in brackets [ ] denote general patterns, but not true rules.
= d / t / (depending on the verb)
= infinitive form
formed by taking a verb stem and adding the ending shown on the chart.
However, sometimes the root-vowel of a verb stem changes depending on
certain circumstances. These vowel shifts, and when they occur must be
memorized separately.
Present Indicative:
W(a) = / -ar / -ar / -um / -i /
W(i) = -i / -ir / -ir / -um / -i /
S = - / [-ur] / [-ur ] / -um / -i /
I = - / - / - / -um / -i /

Past Indicative:
W(a) = -ai / -air / -ai / -um / -i / -u
W(i) = -i / -ir / -ir / -um / -i / -u
S = - / [-st] / - / -um / -u / -u
I = -i / -ir / -i / -um / -u / -u
Present Subjunctive:
All = -i / -ir / -i / -um / -i / -i
Past Subjunctive:
W(a) = -ai / -air / -ai / -um / -i / -u
W(i) = -i / -ir / -ir / -um / -i / -u
S = -i / -ir / -i / -um / -u / -u
I = -i / -ir / -i / -um / -u / -u

Noun Quality
Several aspects of a noun that English indicates either through word order or context
are indicated in Icelandic by inflectional endings. This allows the word order of
Icelandic to be far more flexible than that of English. It also changes the
pronunciation. Minor differences in inflectional endings have to be enunciated, even if
the syllable in which they are contained is not stressed.
All Indo-European languages, including English, possess a concept of grammatical
gender. English is unique in that gender in the standard dialect is assigned logically.
Male persons and creatures are masculine, female persons and creatures are
feminine, inanimate objects are neuter. The majority of other Indo-European
languages, Icelandic included, eschew delegation according to biological gender and
assign gender to inanimate things randomly. There are three genders in Icelandic;
masculine, feminine, and neuter. Unlike German, one can usually deduce the gender
of a word just by looking at its Nominative singular form. But unlike Spanish, the cues
are much more complicated. While an exhaustive list is impossible, the majority of
words will have an ending among those listed below.
Exclusively masculine:

Exclusively masculine with minor exceptions:

-ar (sumar, n. - summer)

-ir (mir - mother, dttir - daughter, systir - sister, all feminine)
-ari (altari, n.)
Usually masculine:


Exclusively feminine:

Usually feminine:

Exclusively neuter:

In this respect Icelandic is very similar to English. There are two numbers, singular
and plural. They are distinguished under the same conditions as English. Inflectional
endings usually distinguish number. When they do not, the situation is analogous to
the English singular-plural pair sheep/sheep: a rare, old word that often has collective
connotations in any case.

This should be familiar to those with knowledge of Latin, Sanskrit, German, or many
of the Slavic languages. Icelandic distinguishes four cases: Nominative, Accusative,
Dative, and Genitive. Among conjugational pardigms, the genitive singular,
nominative plural, and accusative plural show the greatest varience.
The Nominative case marks the subject of a verb phrase. As an example in English,
he is a pronoun in the Nominative case.
The Accusative case is also fairly simple. It marks the direct object of a verb phrase.
Him is a pronoun in the Accusative case. In verbs that take two direct objects, like in
the sentence, The town elected him mayor, both objects are in the accusative.
Certain impersonal verbs have an accusative which functionally acts as their subject,
the true subject left off. For example, hana vantar peninga (literally her it.needs
money, actually she needs money). When used with prepositions or adverbs, it gives
a sense of motion. For example, akurinn with akur in the Accusative means into the
field, whereas akurinum with akur in the Dative means in the field.
Speaking of... the Dative case marks the indirect object of a verb phrase. An indirect
object is not directly acted upon by the verb, but is rather a benificiary of the action.
For instance, in Kjartan gaf henni peninga (Kjartan gave her money), the pronoun
hn is in the Accusative. The sentence could also be written Kjartan gaf peninga
henni (Kjartan gave money to her). Since the information is contained within the
inflection, there's no need to add a preposition as in English. Icelandic word order is
more flexible, so one is able to emphasize certain aspects of the sentence while still
retaining coherency. Of note is that subjects of passive verbs remain in the Dative,
unlike English. Henni var gifen peninga af Kjartan (She was given money by Kjartan).
The dative also functions as the subject of certain verbs. These verbs usually denote
mental states, responsibility, quick movement, instrumental use, and deprivation.
Adjectives and adverbs with respect to an object may be juxtaposed with the object
in Dative, but this is more literary language. In colloquial Icelandic a prepositional
phrase is preferred. Finally, the Dative is often used with prepositions, denoting a
sense of position instead of movement. See the akurinum example above.
The last case, the Genitive, denotes possession. It substitutes for both the English
Genitive inflection, 's, and the preposition of. Indeed the Icelandic inflection is often
exactly the same as in English. There are significant differences, however. In English
we tend to separate active possession from passive possession, the former being
indicated by inflectional while the latter by prepositional phrase. Icelandic makes no
such distinction, using the Genitive in both cases. The word order is also different,
Icelandic usually has the possessor follow the thing it possesses. This holds for
possessive pronouns as well. Like the Dative case, the Genitive stands as the direct
object of certain verbs. Also like the Dative, the Genitive is used in prepositional
phrases, generally with a meaning of relative location or abstract association.

Icelandic declension is not regular. At all. It does, however, follow patterns, some of
which are more common than others. One can find a parallel in English verbs. The
majority follow the pattern of love, loved, loved, but there are also irregular groups
like swim, swam, swum or wear, wore, wore. It's the vast amount of these patterns in
Icelandic that causes problems. As an illustration, Latin, a famously declensionhappy language, has twenty declension patterns including irregular nouns. Icelandic
has seventy-three. So much for that. One item of solace is that in all patterns the -um
or -m of plural Dative and the -a of plural Genitive remains the same.
Noun declensions are sorted into two broad types, called strong and weak. Just like
with strong and weak verbs in English, the strong category contains all the irregulars.
These two categories are further divided among the three genders. Finally, they are
sorted into classes according to their Nominative plural and Genitive singular case
Strong Declension
The strong declension is characterized by by a Genitive singular that always ends in
a consonant, either -s or -ar. It also exhibits far more variance than the weak
declension, which is why it is called strong. Words within it tend to buck regular
declension patterns. Besides case ending variation, there are also mutations to the
root word within certain cases. This is called umlaut, and came about because
certain vowels following a syllable caused a sound change to come about in that
Class 1
Marked by a Genitive singular of -s and Nominative plural of -ar. Singular charts
come above plural charts, and an example word of each paradigm within the class is
labeled and declined.








Class 2
Marked by Genitive singular of -s and Nominative plural of -ar. Final stop words of
Class 2 may sometimes have a Genitive singular of -ar to be memorized. Many
words in this class have no -ur in the Nominative singular, such as the all-important
gu (God).
Uncommon Umlaut Final Stop
Nom.| smiur | dalur | leikur
Acc.| smi | dal | leik

Dat.| smi | dal | leik

Gen.| smis | dals | leiks
Nom.| smiir | dalir | leikir
Acc.| smii | dali | leiki
Dat.| smium | dlum | leikjum
Gen.| smia | dala | leikja
Class 3
Marked by Genitive singular of -ar and Nominative plural of -ir.
Common Umlaut
Nom.| hlutur | spnn
Acc.| hlut | spn
Dat.| hlut | spni
Gen.| hlutar | spns
Nom.| hlutir | spnir
Acc.| hluti | spni
Dat.| hlutum | spnum
Gen.| hluta | spna
Class 4
Inconsistent Genitive, Nominative plural of -ur. Mostly a unique class for common
words, which sadistically undergo very strange and inconsistent umlauts during
declension. The six normal ones are listed without labels, any others in this class
have fallen out of even literary usage.
Nom.| brir | fair | fingur | ftur | vetur | maur
Acc.| brur | fur | fingur | ft | vetur | mann
Dat.| brur | fur | fingri | fti | vetri | manni
Gen.| brurs | furs | fingurs | ftar | vetrar | manns
Nom.| brur | feur | fingur | ftur | vetur | menn
Acc.| brur | feur | fingur | ftur | vetur | menn
Dat.| brrum | ferum | fingrum | ftum | vetrum | mnnum
Gen.| brra | fera | fingra | fta | vetra | manna
Class 1
Marked by Genitive singular of -ar or -r and Nominative plural of -ar. This class holds
the trend-subverting feminine nouns that end in -ur for their Nominative singular.
Common Suffixed False
Nom.| kinn | hreyfing | lifur | st
Acc.| kinn | hreyfingu | lifur | st
Dat.| kinn | hreyfingu | lifur | st
Gen.| kinnar | hreyfingar| lifar | str
Nom.| kinnar | hreyfingar| lifar | str
Acc.| kinnar | hreyfingar| lifar | str
Dat.| kinnum | hreyfingum| lifum | stm
Gen.| kinna | hreyfinga | lifa | sta
Class 2
Marked by Genitive singular of -ar and Nominative plural of -ir. This class is
extremely common for feminine nouns. The infixed and umlauted category can
sometimes coincide in one word, in which case two of its syllables will change in
vowel. A word of that sort is declined in the infixed category to illustrate the dual
Common Umlaut Suffixed
Nom.| sveit | sk | pntun
Acc.| sveit | sk | pntun
Dat.| sveit | sk | pntun
Gen.| sveitar | sakar | pntunar
Nom.| sveitir | sakir | pantanir

Acc.| sveitir | sakir | pantanir

Dat.| sveitum | skum | pntunum
Gen.| sveita | saka | pantana
Class 3
Marked by a Genitive singular of -ar, -ur, or -r and a Nominative plural of -ur or -r.
There are only a few words in this class, and they're all frustratingly irregular. To
explain the class thoroughly would be to decline every word in it. Thus it is better just
to memorize the declensions of Class 3 feminine words, especially since they're
infuriatingly common words like bk (book), kr (cow), and mir (mother).
Only one class in this gender, marked by a Genitive singular and no ending for the
Nominative plural.
Common Umlaut Drop
Nom.| lf | land | sumar
Acc.| lf | land | sumar
Dat.| lfi | landi | sumri
Gen.| lfs | lands | sumars
Nom.| lf | lnd | sumur
Acc.| lf | lnd | sumur
Dat.| lfum | lndum | sumrum
Gen.| lfa | landa | sumra
Weak Declension
All nouns of the weak declension have singular endings in a short vowel: -i, -a, or -u.
While there is far less variance in this declension, there are still a few subdivided
Class 1
Marked by a Genitive singular of -a and a Nominative plural of -ar. There are once
again two common umlaut transformations in this class, both of which sometimes
occur in the same word such as in the example with bakari.
Common Umlaut Infixed
Nom.| svii | vani | bakari
Acc.| svia | vana | bakara
Dat.| svia | vana | bakara
Gen.| svia | vana | bakara
Nom.| sviar | vanar | bakarar
Acc.| svia | vana | bakara
Dat.| svium | vnum | bkurum
Gen.| svia | vana | bakara
Class 2
Marked by a Genitive singular of -a and a Nominative plural of -ur. These are
universally present participles of verbs which have become nouns. They are few and
function exactly like Class 1 except with -ur for the plural Nominative and Accusative.
Umlaut is sometimes undergone for the entire plural declension because of
contraction from the original noun.
Nom.| bndi
Acc.| bnda
Dat.| bnda
Gen.| bnda
Nom.| bndur
Acc.| bndur
Dat.| bndum
Gen.| bnda
Class 1

Marked by a singular Genitive of -u and a Nominative plural of -ur. Divided into two
types, those with an -n infix in the Genitive plural and those without. Normal umlaut of
the a-stem occurs in both, as illustrated throughout nearly every other declensional
table above.
Infixed Non-Infixed
Nom.| saga | lilja
Acc.| sgu | lilju
Dat.| sgu | lilju
Gen.| sgu | lilju
Nom.| sgur | liljur
Acc.| sgur | liljur
Dat.| sgum | liljum
Gen.| sagna | lilja
Class 2
Marked by a singular Genitive of -i and no plural. Its declension is... er... rather
simple. This class is composed almost entirely of abstract nouns formed from
adjectives, for which a plural would not make cognitive sense. There are also a few
irregular nouns with plurals in need of memorization.
Nom.| glei
Acc.| glei
Dat.| glei
Gen.| glei
Only a few words which decline regularly, mostly body parts. The -n- infix of weak
feminine nouns is observed universally.
Common Umlaut
Nom.| lunga | hjarta
Acc.| lunga | hjarta
Dat.| lunga | hjarta
Gen.| lunga | hjarta
Nom.| lungu | hjrtu
Acc.| lungu | hjrtu
Dat.| lungum | hjrtum
Gen.| lungna | hjartna
Definite Article
Icelandic possesses a definite article like the English the, although no indefinite
article. It is used in exactly the same manner, but somewhat less commonly than in
English. It is not used with many collective nouns, occupation nouns, place names
that could be proper nouns, and general state nouns like bndi (farmer) and stlkur
(girls). Definite articles decline just like nouns according to gender, number, and
case. They can either precede the noun as in English, or be added as a suffix to the
Free Definite Article
The free definite article can only be used if an adjective separates it from the noun it
modifies. For example, one can write hinn gi maur, but not hinn maur. Even
then, the free definite article is only used in literary style, where it is also sometimes
written without an h-. Colloquial speech nearly always suffixes the definite article.
The free definite article declines thus:
Masc Fem
Nom.| hinn | hin | hi
Acc.| hinn | hina | hi
Dat.| hinum | hinni | hinu
Gen.| hins | hinnar | hins
Nom.| hinir | hinar | hin

Acc.| hina | hinar | hin

Dat.| hinum | hinum | hinum
Gen.| hinna | hinna | hinna
Suffixed Definite Article
The suffixed definite article functions somewhat like a separate system of declension.
As it is attached to the end of words in each case, it often changes the ending that
comes before it. The variations of the suffixed definite article are, thankfully, far fewer
than those of the actual declensions. Certain changes are common to all suffixed
nouns. The -m of the Dative plural is always lost. The -a of the Genitive plural is lost if
it would be preceded by an accented vowel. False masculine nouns ending in -ur
lose the -u- in all suffixes. The -i- of the suffix itself is lost in nouns of the weak
declension and after the stem vowel -.
S. Class 1 S. Class 2 Monosyllabic Weak
Nom.| pskurinn | smiurinn | skrinn | vaninn
Acc.| pskinn | smiinn | skinn
| vanann
Dat.| pskinum | sminum | sknum
| vananum
Gen.| psksins | smiarins | skins
| vanans
Nom.| pskarnir | smiirnir | skrnir | vanarnir
Acc.| pskana | smiina | skna
| vanana
Dat.| pskunum | smiunum | sknum
| vnunum
Gen.| pskanna | smianna | sknna
| vananna
Nom.| kinnin | stin | lifrin | sagan
Acc.| kinnina | stna | lifrina | sguna
Dat.| kinninni | stnni | lifrinni | sgunni
Gen.| kinnarinnar| strinnar| lifrarinnar| sgunnar
Nom.| kinnarnar | strnar | lifrarnar | sgurnar
Acc.| kinnarnar | strnar | lifrarnar | sgurnar
Dat.| kinnunum | stnum | lifrunum | sgunum
Gen.| kinnanna | stnna | lifranna | saganna
Common Stem- Drop
Nom.| landi | tr | sumri | lunga
Acc.| landi | tr | sumri | lunga
Dat.| landinu | trnu | sumrinu | lunganu
Gen.| landsins | trsins | sumursins | lungans
Nom.| lndin | trn | sumrin | lungun
Acc.| lndin | trn | sumrin | lungun
Dat.| lndunum | trjanum | sumrunum | lungunum
Gen.| landanna | trjanna | sumranna | lungnanna