"Simu zinapatikana"

Translation:The phones are available

April 12, 2017



"Zinapatikana" Can anyone break down this word into parts? I don't understand.

April 12, 2017


Let's see. Well, 'zi' is the subject particle (plural 3rd person noun from n-n class), 'na' is the time particle (present tense) and 'patikana' is a verb (to be found or to be available). Kupatikana is kinda interesting because it shows that verbs in Swahili verb can have compound forms. Kupata means to get. Then you add in the "-ik" to make the verb become stative and the '-na' at the end makes it reciprocal as well. Therefore, you move from kupata (to get) to kupatikana (to be available).

April 25, 2017


Why does it have to have a reciprocal affix? Wouldn't "Simu zinapatika" (without "-na") mean Phones are available?

I saw another example of an unexpected reciprocal being added to a word in the stative verbs unit: inawezekana (it is possible). Is this a common form in Swahili? What function does it serve?

February 11, 2018


I am a native speaker in the Tanzania mainland. Zinapatika is commonly used in some part(s) in Zanzibar( I heard it in Rural Unguja). Not sure about Inawezeka though, seems way too weird. But I advice you always should use the whole word, finish up to the 'na'. That is the way used by majority of swahili speakers.

November 30, 2018


Thanks very much, mikidadial! Whatever native speakers actually say has to be the correct answer :)

November 30, 2018


That's a lot! Thank you!

April 25, 2017


Na at the end isn't it to enter the meaning "each other"??

July 16, 2017


I agree. Why is the reciprocal form used here?

March 24, 2018


No, because " zi- " subject particle shows that it is plural form - phones.

November 8, 2017


My "the phone is available" was not accepted. Is that right?

September 20, 2017


Yes. The 'zi' tells you it must be plural

February 9, 2018
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