Pronouns

topPersonal pronouns

1st person singular
me
* bame
* mame
I, me
* I, me (male)
* I, me (female)
2nd person singular
tu
* batu
* matu
You
* You (male)
* You (female)
3rd person singular
lo
* balo
* malo
He, she, him, her, it
* He, him
* She, her
1st person plural
noy
* banoy
* manoy
We, us
* We, us (male)
* We, us (female)
2nd person plural
voy
* bavoy
* mavoy
You
* You (male)
* You (female)
3rd person plural
ley
* baley
* maley
They, them
* They (male)
* They (female)
Indefinite pronoun
ane One

There is also a prefix za- for non-binary gender.
It is also possible to take distance from the other person, in a respectful way, by using done (miss, madam, lady, mister, sir, gentleman) instead of the personal pronoun. However, this use is not recommended.

Examples

me lovi tu = I love you
tu lovi lo = You love him/her
balo lovi me = He loves me
malo lovi me = She loves me
orelí me = Listen to me
ki tu voli longice?bame? = Do you want a dress? – Me (male)?
nalcí lo na me = Give it to me
lo gukusti = It’s expensive
manoy voli samete = We (female) want equality
ane fari gubona pane en franse = One makes a very good bread in France
otí ley tien = Put them over there

topPossessive determiners

To create possessive adjectives or adjectives related to personal pronouns, we add to them the -a ending of the adjective.

  • mea = my, mine
  • tua = your, yours (singular)
  • loa = his, her, hers
  • noya = our, ours
  • voya = your, yours (plural)
  • leya = their, theirs

Examples

me si voya doste = I am your friend
noy si tua dostey = We are your friends
tia buke si mea = This book is mine
loa vale jo terupisi = Its value tripled

topPossessive pronouns

Possessive pronouns have the same form as possessive adjectives.

Example

sis tu peli na me tua name, me peli na tu mea = If you tell me your name, I’ll tell you mine.
si mea probleme, ne tua = It’s my problem, not yours
loa rodji = Her/his/its is red

topReflexive

It is possible to transform a personal pronoun into a reflexive pronoun by adding the reflexive prefix su-, but it is not mandatory. The context often allows to do without this use.
The reflexive pronoun refers to the actor of the word (usually a verbal group) to which it refers. In the vast majority of cases, this corresponds to the subject of the proposal, and it is to this subject that the reflective refers when the actor is not mentioned.

Example

ley safifi ley = They wash them

ley safifi su = They wash themselves
suley refers to the actor of the verb safifi (to wash): ley (they)

lo pediti kon suloa bape ni suloa wawe = She walks with her own father and her own dog ➜ suloa refers to the actor of the verbal group pediti kon (walk with): balo (he)

lo pediti kon suloa bape ni loa wawe = She walks with her own father and his dog (her father’s or even someone else’s).

done plesi suloa aydane icifi sulo = The gentleman asks his own maid to get dressed
suloa refers to the actor of the verb plesi (to ask): done (Mr, Ms). sulo refers to the actor of the verb icifi (to dress): aydane (maid)

done plesi suloa maydane icifi lo = The gentleman asks his own maid to dress him
The maid musts dress the gentleman, or even another person.

kenji tsi ame a djemila na sulo = Kenji knows about Djemila’s love for herself
sulo refers to the actor of the word ame (love). Djemila is the one who loves, so sulo refers to Djemila.

ley lami tem wana nasade na suleya ide = They complain about the mistreatment of their (own) child.
suleya doesn’t refers to lami (to complain) since they don’t complain about themselves. suleya refers to wana nasade (mistreatment), but the actor of this mistreatment isn’t mentioned, so the reflexive pronoun refers by default to the subject of the clause: ley (they)

Note: In most cases, it is preferable to attach the prefix to the transitive verb / action rather than using such phrases.

Example

ley susafifi = They wash themselves
done plesi loa aydane suicifi = The gentleman asks his own maid to get dressed
kenji tsi suame a djemila = Kenji knows about Djemila’s self-love

topRelative pronouns

A relative pronoun allows to refer to another word to introduce a new clause (who, what, where, which…). The relative clause is separated from the main clause by a comma marking a slight pause.

  • e = thing or situation (what)
  • a = designation or quality (which, the one, such as)
  • o = manner, way (as, how)
  • en = location, place (where)
  • os = time (when)
  • ke = global

Examples

cesí, e tu nudi = Take what you need
welí, e me voli pravesi = Look what I want to buy
welí, a me voli pravesi = Look at the one I want to buy.
mate, a me lovi = The woman (that) I love
ane, tem a me peli na tu = The person (that) I’m talking about
me ami tu, a tu si = I love you the way you are
me i, o me voli = I do as I please
eve en me jiti = The house where I live
hore os tu tiiti = The time (when) you arrive

The pronoun ke can be used instead of any other pronoun, without necessarily marking a pause beforehand.

Examples

mate ke me lovi = The woman (that) I love
ane ke me peli na tu = The person (that) I’m talking about
eve ke me jiti = The house where I live
hore ke tu tiiti = The time (when) you arrive

In some cases, the use of the pronoun ke may be confusing because of different interpretations, but context is usually sufficient to understand the meaning of the sentence.

Examples

cesí ke tu nudi = Take what you need / Take the one you need / Take when you need
me i ke me voli = I do what I want / I do as I please
ene ke me peli = The place I’m talking about / The place where I’m talking.
ene ke me vo pravesi = The place where I will buy / The place (that) I will buy

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