Translation:They should not bring it

March 10, 2017

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Does one of these infixes indicate "should"?


The change in the final "a" in the verb stem -leta to "e" indicates the subjunctive = "should"

wa- (subject prefix "they"), -si- (negative "not"), -i- (object infix "it"), -lete (verb stem "bring", subjunctive = "should")


Thank you very much. It is always difficult when one of these pops up before it is introduced in the course.


I really have to study much more to get this details. Thank you for make things clear!


previous wa-si-it/them-verb-e did not use should, but rather strict assertion (don't do it)...now it is should. It is confusing when it switches answer forms...

Now I get the subjunctives: https://www2.ku.edu/~kiswahili/pdfs/lesson_55.pdf


This 'rather strict assertion' mood (command or imperative) is dealt with in lesson 43 in KU course. But you can only give commands to people that you are talking to: ' go home now!', but not to third persons (he/she or they). So when using a- or wa- it is always the subjunctive, i.e. 'she should', 'they should'¶. And, of course, since you can't give commands to yourself ni- and tu- will translate to 'I should' and ' we should'.

The only time when there is ambiguity is when giving a negative command to someone that you're talking to: i.e. Usiipike or Msiipike which can be translated to either 'Don't cook it' or 'You should not cook it'. Usiipike is actually one of the exercises in this lesson, and DL accepts both translations.

¶ Plus a whole bunch of other possible translations, because the subjunctive is used much more commonly is Swahili than it is in English.


Thank you @Ernst557459. I'll go checkout the KU course #43.
This is the first I've seen explained w/r to the use of 'should' or otherwise. I didn't see any reference in the DL resources, but may have just missed it? I really appreciate your help!


So, for make more clear ; how should to be afirmative subjunctive for this sentence ? I will be appreciate for the answer :)


Simply remove the negative subjunctive sign -si-: wailete, or "they should bring it"


Thank you. Subjunctive is still before me. The only changed ending looks to easy =D


I would think this could mean "They should not bring it" if the "i" refers to an M/Wa or a N/N noun, but "They should not bring them" if it refers to an M/Mi noun. Is that right?


The object prefix i- can refer to a class 4 noun (e.g. "miti" = trees, i.e. plural only - so that would actually translate as "them" not "it") or a class 9 noun (e.g. "nyumba" = house, i.e. singular only).
It doesn't apply to the noun classes 1 (M/), 2 (/Wa), 3 (M/), or 10 (/N) that you mention above.
There is a complete table of subject and object prefixes here:

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