Nsenga Linguistics: Verbs
As we study our new book, Linguistic Analysis of Cinsenga by Lazarus Miti, we are learning all sorts of new things about the language in which we will soon be immersed.
To give the readers of our blog a taste of the joys of linguistics (especially analyzing and attempting to learn a mostly-undocumented new language), we will be posting some linguistic data from Nsenga, as well as some of the kinds of questions linguists seek to answer based on the data they have collected.
Have fun wrestling with this little puzzle. You can click the link at the bottom of the page for answers, but try to work through the problems first! Maybe you have more of a knack for languages than you thought.
- Nikalile ‘I will cry’
- Nikawele ‘I will come’
- Mukawele ‘You will come’
- Simukalila ‘You will not cry’
- Muiwela ‘You came’
Based on these verbs, what meaning do each of the following word-parts (morphemes) have?
What is the difference between verbs that end in –a and verbs that end in –e ?
How would you say ‘I will not cry’?
For answers, click below: