Possessives

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Aim - be able to describe ownership using possessive markers (my/your/our etc).

Possessive expressions are formed using a possessive marker, which depends on the noun class of the thing possessed.

mosadi wa motsomi the wife of the hunter (mosadi = class 1)
molomo wa tau the mouth of the lion (molomo = class 3)
lee la ntshe the egg of the ostrich (lee = class 5)
selepe sa kgosi the axe of the chief (selepe = class 7)
ditlhako tsa ngwana the shoes of the child (ditlhako = class 8)

The possessive markers are formed by taking the subject marker and adding "a" as follows:

Possessive Markers

Class 1 Mosadi o + a wa
Class 2 Batho ba + a ba
Class 3 Molomo o + a wa
Class 4 mesese e + a ya
Class 5 legodu le + a la
Class 6 makgowa a + a a
Class 7 Setswana se + a sa
Class 8 dimumu di + a tsa
Class 9 koloi e + a ya
Class 10 diphologolo di + a tsa
Class 11 lorole lo + a xxx
Class 12 dikgong di + a tsa
Class 14 borotha bo + a xxxx
Class 15 go ithuta go + a xxxx

Personal Possessive

mine - me ngwana wa me my child
your - gago dilepe tsa gago your x
his/her - gagwe baithuti ba gagwe his/her x
our - rona ngwana wa rona our child
your (plural) - lona Ditonki tsa lona x
their - bone ngwana wa bane thier child

Possession with a Person's Name

When a name or kinship term is used with a possessive, the word "ga" is added before the name

ngwana wa ga Neo Neo's child
ke mosese wa ga Nthati it is Nthati's dress
re bonye dikgomo tsa ga Dikeledi we saw Dikeledi's cattle
ba badile dibuka tsa ga Shakespeare they read Shakespeare's books
dinsta tsa gago di bolaile dipodi tsa ga maolme your dogs have killed my uncle's goats

Possession question - Whose ?

=== Descriptive Possessives