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  5. "Walimchukulia"


Translation:They took on his behalf

April 16, 2017



Here's a report I made. I'm posting it here just in case anyone's interested in sharing their viewpoints.

What does this mean? It would be really helpful if you had slightly longer sentences so we could know how this works. "They took for him" is not a complete sentence in English and I don't know how to use this is Swahili.

For example, I'm guessing you can say "Walimchukulia wali." and it means "They took some rice for him." Or does it mean "They took him some rice. / They took some rice to him."?

This goes for the whole course. Instead of having just "kuku mzito" = "heavy chicken", as we had in another lesson, can we please have full sentences so we're constantly practicing all the things we've already learned? Please?

"Wewe ni kuku mzito."
"Nina kuku mzito."
"Ninapenda kuku wazito."
"Kaka yangu anataka kununua kuku mzito sokoni."

It's OK if they're strange sentences ... full sentences are much more useful because you're practicing everything together and overall, you get much more practice from the same number of questions.


In general I agree with you on this one, but in this exact example the Swahili sentence is in fact complete. A better translation would be "They took it for him". It could be used as an answer to a question like "What did Rashidi's parents do with the package that came for him yesterday?", "They took it for him" or "They took it on behalf of him".

I too would really like longer sentences with a bit more context to go on, but very often in this course it's the English translations that are the real issue.


The ridiculous thing about that is that I was marked incorrect for the translation which included the very important 'it' to make this sentence sensible. Very unusual because as a native speaker of the language I almost never use this sentence without the 'it'.


I totally agree more context is really important to be able to build any kind of useful understanding!


I agree. Either a more complete sentence, or accepting a correct North American/British/Australian English sentence with a direct object (in this specific case), or whatever else is needed to have it be grammatical, even if the translation isn't word for word. Word for word translations are a real problem when going from one language to another anyway, and requiring them only confuses the issue.

[deactivated user]

    'They took for him' is a full sentence. It's benefactive, such as 'he was meant to take.' 'They took for him.' Just because it's rare doesn't mean it's wrong.


    They took WHAT for him? I will put.

    [deactivated user]

      An item is not absolutely necessary.


      So would you say that "I will put" is a complete sentence? What about "Is raining," or "She takes with her"?

      And regardless of whether it is or it isn't, my complaint, if you had bothered to read it, was to ask for more in each question to make it easier to understand what is meant and also so that we would be practising more with each question. I'm assuming you've noticed in the German course that there are just about no incomplete sentences except for a few things early on in the lesson where vocabulary is introduced.

      If you'd like to practise less with each question, then there are a huge number of courses on memrise which only offer single words so that you can enjoy your context-free flashcard experience. Have fun!

      (You can't write comments and upvote your own there though, so maybe it might not be as fun for you.)


      Welcome to Swahili. Whatever @will maina has said is correct. Let me give you some examples to get more context. Your father told you " weka ndani", you will reply "I will put". You ask your grandfather "How is the weather in the village?" He replies " is raining!" Your mom asks you " where is your sister's bag?" You reply 'she takes with her'

      [deactivated user]

        Those examples are irrelevant. & who would want less? I want more. Your actions violate the spirit; you should have read the guidelines. I hope you feel better! Have a nice day.


        It is in normal everyday English.


        It is not very helpful to use rare English in a language course for beginners. For me English is a foreign language. So correct understandable and correct translations are helpful. the same time, the incubators come from Kenya an we should realize that their perception of English language may be quite different from a British or US perspective. That is one of the nice things regarding linguistics. It is never dull, not always predictable and you can have lots of debate on what your perception of correctness is.


        In normal English I would never use 'took' without an object. With some other verbs the object may implicit - eg 'he stole for her', but not in this case.


        It's not rare. It's just plain wrong. The sentence requires an object. It may be a full sentence in Swahili, but it doesn't follow that a literal translation into another language will automatically produce a grammatically correct sentence in that language.


        They are not complete sentences in English. Some verbs require a direct object, and would in these cases need either a noun or a referential word "it" for referring to a noun that has already been mentioned in an earlier sentence. In Swahili the object concord of the verb serves this referential purpose. For example, if you say "Je umevinunua viazi?" - "Have you bought potatoes?", you could answer simply with "Nimevinunua" - "I have bought (them)." where the -vi- object infix has the same function as the "it" in a corresponding English sentence.


        Thanks for doing this. I agree strongly with your comments.


        I agree with you all!


        I agree - more sensible sentences would help proper learning


        O.K. vtopphol I will try to translate the sentence you offered =D "What did Rashidi's parents do with the package that came for him yesterday?" - Walifanya nini wazazi wa Rashidi na mfuko wake ambayo ulipelekwa ( ulikuja ) jana.


        It's good, except you would use the relative verb construction for "that came", which would be "uliyekuja" or "uliyefika". Peleka is to send, and pelekwa would be was sent, and not arrived.


        Duolingo is not perfect yet. But i am glad to be able to use this . And i saw this discussion, i learned english too. Discussion is very helpful for me. thank you


        Actually, "walimchukulia" can mean "they put up with him", i.e., "they were patient with him". And ... kuchukulia can mean "to carry for" but in this case it begs for an object: "Walimchukulia mzigo." -- "They carried the luggage/load for him." The Kamusi ya Kiswahili Sanifu has about 12 different meanings for "kuchukua" and for many of these, the prepositional form will also have meaning. When you are dealing with a word that has a dozen different meanings, context is essential.


        Agreed, more context would be great. I think the fix here is simple: get comfortable with ambiguity in language. Both languages have tendencies, but speakers constantly violate those tendencies. This is a relatively new course on a free app. It's not gonna be perfect.


        I've seen errors in every textbook I've seen in every language I've looked at textbooks in. Errors are normal. But this course is a real problem. Take generally almost always requires an object. It is used if you don't know what the object is. Other languages have the same form as Swahili, but the courses allow you to use it to make the English sentence grammatical. I've done other beta courses, which were MUCH more complete, and one other beta course which was worse (Guarani, which seems to be being worked on again now). If this was the first course I worked on in Duolingo I think I would have said the app was a piece of something not nice and never tried to use it again, luckily I have done other courses and know that eventually this will get fixed (I hope).


        But, apart from the "it" discussion... That "m"... Shouldn't this mean they took for you (plural)?? Shouldn't it be waliachukulia to talk about the 3rd person??


        No, confusingly, the object prefix is different:
        Me: -ni-
        You (sg): -ku-
        Him/her: -m-
        Us: -tu-
        You (pl.): -wa-
        Them: -wa-

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