1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swahili
  4. >
  5. "Jina langu ni nani?"

"Jina langu ni nani?"

Translation:What is my name?

February 20, 2017

27 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SoupandPie

I find it interesting that nani is what in Kiswahili, since Japanese word for what is also nani.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RaizinM

In Swahili it's "who", not "what", though. Which makes it kinda confusing for those of us who speak Japanese. :/ But it is a cool coincidence. :)

"What" in Swahili is "nini", by the way. So still kinda similar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mahankr

So if nani is who, why do you have to use it in this sentence then?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RaizinM

I'm not sure, it's probably just the way they do it.

There's some sense to it, though. "Who" is, in a sense, a word you use to ask for a name.

"Who did this?" "Clara."
"Who is that?" "John."
"Who is your name?" "Beth."

It sounds weird in English, but it's not that unlogical.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jonathanbost

I guess that you can also use is for what. Like in Spanish "cada" means "each" and "every."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/paschal895465

What in Swahili is nini


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theo_Bromin

It's a bit like "sawa" in swahili and "ca va" in french - both meaning more or less "ok"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hectorlqr

Sht....I think swahili is an altaic language! XD


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BaryLevi

Who am I? what am I? Am I amnesic?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/idkhbtfm

Or perhaps an unprogrammed robot.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AyalTunkel

lol. I am a RoBoT.......


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyanOkushi

More likely just asking someone you've just met for confirmation, maybe after telling them your name, and you want them to really remember it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/davidgva

Ooh na na, jina langu ni nani


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Farroko

Hahahaha Rihanna ni Nzuri


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JohnReid8

I wondered why he was shouting. Having read the comments I'm guessing he saw the Jackie Chan film "Who Am I?".

Edit: Nope, just found another one of his recordings, he just has a loud voice. Still a useful memory aid though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jkqxz

Is it Rumpelstiltskin?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MelB711546

@soupandpie i thought that was the case...hmmm...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kayton330018

Why would I need to know what my own name was?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kayton330018

Why would anyone want to kmow what their own name is


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JohnLeBlan3

I'm not following how to use the possessive pronoun -angu. Sometimes, as here, one sees 'langu', other times 'yangu'. What's the rule for adding the correct consonant to -angu?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ElMeuNom

It depends on the noun class of the previous word. In this case, jina is a ji word, so it takes l-. Yangu would be used for some of the other classes (I can't remember which off the top of my head--I think singular N/N words and maybe some others.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavyDesh1

It is like Chinese--the literal sentence for "what's your name?" translates to "your name is what?" or "You are called what name?"

Learn Swahili in just 5 minutes a day. For free.