Introductory Shona Language - Lesson 3
|Lesson 3:||More sentences||Negatives||Exercise||Vocabulary|
1. Now you'll learn how to use other tenses. These use the form of:
Personal pronoun + tense indicator + stem. You already know about pronouns and stems. The tense indicators are:
past (before today).
I will go. ndinoENDA
go (regularly). ndakaENDA
Notice that the last vowel of the pronoun changes to an 'a' if it is
not already for the past tense. I have listed these 'past pronouns'at
the bottom. They are very important as they can be used to make one of
the simplest and most useful tenses of all, what I call the 'today past'.
This is formed by adding the 'past pronoun' to the stem: so:
I dug (today) ndaPEDZA
2. Here are some examples: read and understand them to get the hang
of how things work. New vocabulary is at the bottom of this page.
NdichaTENGA miriwo I will buy vegetables.
aFAMBA ku chikoro
he walked to school.
TinoBVA kuScotland we come from Scotland.
VakaGARA pa moto
they sat by the fire.
3. Now we can change the subject of our sentences, instead of just saying 'I, they' etc.
This is easily done by just putting the word for the subject in front
of a verb in the correct form.
vana vaENDA kuchikoro the children went to school.
John ari kuSHANDA
John is working.
4. However, be careful of doing this for things other than people: they
use other pronouns which we'll get to later!
5. We can combine all the things we know to make longer sentences, e.g.
TichaTENGA miriwo mu/pa musika We'll buy vegetables in/at the market
vakadzi vari kuSENZA mu munda
the women are working in the garden.
6. Some other useful things
To say 'I want
'ndinoDA' + object, e.g
I want (some) vegetables (though a more polite
way is to say 'ndipei' miriwo'
'please give me (some) vegetables')
To say 'I want to
.' use 'ndinoDA' + infinitive, e.g
ndinoDA kuENDA...I want to go.
ndinoDA kuFUNDA chiShona
I want to learn Shona.
You can use the stem 'DA' like others in the present tense:
he wants to help.
To say 'I have/ I've got' use the stem '-ne', so ndine badza...I've
got a/the hoe
In the negative its like any other verb, but the last vowel changes
to 'a', eg. 'handina'...'I don't have'
These are quite simple: 'ha' + pronoun + stem, e.g. handiende...I don't go. Notice that the last letter changes to an e or an i. You can also say handisi kuENDA...I'm not going. See below.
The negative of 'ndinoda' is 'handidi', and can be used in the same
'handidi kuTENGA'...I don't want to buy
Finally, the negative past is the negative of 'have' ('ha' + pronoun
+ 'na') followed by infinitive, e.g.
havana kuENDA...they didn't go.
Finally, a very useful word is 'shamwari' which means 'friend, mate, pal'. You can add it to just about all of the words and phrases above, where it would seem right in English. Try it and see!
That's about it. To finish off there is another exercise and some useful vocabulary below.
Adjectives & Adverbs
Introductory Shona Language
© Cameron Smith 2000 - feel free to copy as long as its not for profit
Please email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any comments, suggestions, or complaints about this page.