Difference between revisions of "Verbs – present tense"

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Verbs in Setswana (and most Bantu languages) are almost always accompanied by a subject marker (except in the imperative/command form).
 
Verbs in Setswana (and most Bantu languages) are almost always accompanied by a subject marker (except in the imperative/command form).
  
===Basic Subject Markers===
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[[verbs - present tense]]
We have already seen the subject markers
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| ke || I (1st person) 
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|-
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| o ||  you (2nd person)
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|-
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| o* ||  he/she (3rd person)
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|-
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| re || we
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|-
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| le** ||  you (plural)
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|-
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| ba || them
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|}
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.*in the negative, this becomes "a"<br>
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.**in some dialects, marker "lo" is used instead of "le"<br>
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These are the subject markers for people, there are many other markers for nouns which belong to other classes - see later in [[noun classes]]
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===Present Tense (Short Form)===
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In this form, the present tense is simply made by adding the subject marker and the verb. However, this can only be used when there is a word following the verb (otherwise you use the "long form" see below)
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| ke bidiwa Paul || I am called Paul 
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|-
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| o bidiwa Ntathi ||  she is called Ntathi (or you are called Ntathi)
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|-
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| monna o ja apole || the man (he) is eating an apple
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|-
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| re ithutha Setswana  || we are learning Setswana
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|-
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| ke bao ko lelapeng  || I am returning home
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|}
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===Present Tense (long form)===
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If there are no words following the verb, then an extra "a" marker must be added before the verb (called the "long form marker")
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| re a ithuta || we are learning
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|-
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| basadi ba a ja ||  the women (they) are eating
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|-
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| ke a kwala  || I am writing
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|-
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| ke a bao jaanong || I am returning now *
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|}
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.* the verb still takes the long form even though followed by "jaanong". More strictly the long form applies if the verb is "questionable" (eg "I am returning now" is questionable - where are you returning? but "I am returning home" is not)
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===Present Tense (negative)===
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To form the negative, the negative article "ga" comes before the subject marker, and the end of the verb changes from "a" to "e". The long form marker "a" disappears.
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| monna o ja apole || monna ga a je apole* || the man (he) is not eating an apple
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|-
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| re ithutha Setswana  || ga re ithuthe Setswana || we are not learning Setswana
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|-
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| re a ithuta ||  ga re ithute || we are not learning
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|-
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| basadi ba a ja ||  basadi ga ba je || the women (they) are not eating
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|-
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| ke a kwala || ga ke kwale || I am not writing
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|}
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.* Note "o" subject marker changes to "a" in negative form
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===Verb "to be"===
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There is no direct equivalent of the verb "to be" in Setswana. The marker "ke" is used to express identity, but in other situations the normal subject marker is used.
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| Jane ke moruti ||  Jane is a teacher
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|-
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| Jane o montle || Jane is beautiful
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|}
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This will become clearer with use
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===Negative of verb "to be"===
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The marker "se" is used as the negative of "ke"
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| Jane ga se moruti ||  Jane is not a teacher
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|-
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| Jane ga o montle || Jane is not beautiful
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|}
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===Verb "to have"===
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The words "na le" are used for possession, and also for association (think of it as being "to be with")
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| ke na le koloi || I have a car
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|-
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| Jane o na le bana ||  Jane has children
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|-
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| Mary o na le Pitso || Mary is with Pitso
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|-
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| Go na le batho mo ofising || There are people in the office (literally "to be with people in the office")
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|}
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"Go" is the subject marker for infinitives (see later in [[noun classes]])
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===Negative of "to have"===
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In the negative form as well as adding the negative article "ga", the "le" dissapears
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{| style="color:green;background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| ke na le koloi || ga ke na koloi || I don't have a car
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|-
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| Jane o na le bana || Jane ga a na bana ||  Jane hasn't any children
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|-
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| Mary o na le Pitso || Mary ga a na Pitso || Mary isn't with Pitso
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|-
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| Go na le batho mo ofising || Ga go na batho mo ofising || There aren't any people in the office
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|}
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===Vocabulary - Verbs ===
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{| style="color:black;background-color:#ffcc99;" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| bereka || work
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|-
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| rata || like/love
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|-
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| ithuta || learn
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|-
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| tshwara || catch
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|-
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| thusa || help
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|-
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| bina || dance
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|-
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| opela || sing
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|-
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| nwa || drink
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|-
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| taga || intoxicate
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|-
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| utswa || steal
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|-
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| batla || want/need
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|-
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| sia || run away
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|-
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| bela || boil/brew
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|-
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| tsoga || wake up
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|-
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| tlhola || spend the day
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|-
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| robala || sleep
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|-
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| sala || stay
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|}
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===Vocabulary - Nouns ===
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{| style="color:black;background-color:#ffcc99;" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" border="1"
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| mosadi || basadi || woman
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|-
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| mosetsana || basetsana || girl
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|-
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| motswana || batswana || Botswana national
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|-
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| moithuti || baithuti || trainees/learners
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|-
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| lepodisi || x || police officer
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|-
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| x || masole || soldier
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|-
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| sefofu || x || blind person
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|-
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| x || digole || disabled person
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|-
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| kgomo || x || cow
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|-
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| lonao || x || foot
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|-
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| bojalwa || x || beer/alcoholic beverage
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|-
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| mabele || x || sorghum
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|-
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| setswana || x || language of Batswana
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|-
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| legodu || x || thief
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|-
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| metsi || x || water
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|-
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| madi || x || money/blood
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|}
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Latest revision as of 12:29, 17 May 2007

Verbs in Setswana (and most Bantu languages) are almost always accompanied by a subject marker (except in the imperative/command form).

verbs - present tense