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"Mmea haujaota"

Translation:The plant has not germinated

March 31, 2017

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gazelle1596

again: the -ja- tense should better be translated with "not yet" (bado only places emphasis on the "yet") - unfortunately there is no such tense in English. "The plant has not yet sprouted." (or germinated)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Catriona28475

But wouldn't adding "yet" place too much emphasis on the "yet"?
"The plant has not sprouted" still allows the possibility that it will sprout next week (though adding"yet" certainly sounds more optimistic).

Presumably "-ja-" isn't always optimistic? How do you express the idea that the plant has failed to sprout (and never will)?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gazelle1596

"Mmea haukuota (na hautaota)." The "-ku-" negative past is an opportunity past/something that did not happen (it does not include the yet and is usually used when the possibility does not reamin). Weird negative example: Our househelp's daughter had been involved in a van kidnapping and my mother asked her if she was harmed to which the answer was "She has not been harmed yet." which sounds extreme to our ears, but she used the "ja"-tense as the perpetrators were still out there, leaving the possibility...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ivan682896

A seed germinates, not a plant


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gazelle1596

Perhaps "mmea" in Swahili is a more loose term than "plant" in English? ;) Otherwise you could also suggest it with the report function and the mother tongue speakers will correct it if you're right! :)


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

Farmers often talk in English about other things "germinating" when they are actually sprouting so the fact that ota means both sprout and germinate makes a lot if sense.

For example a potato or a woody cutting of cassava will sprout. When translating to English the farmers normally say germinated.

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