Translation:He is slimming himself down

June 22, 2017

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This phrase "anajikondesha" literally means he/she slims himself/herself. Native Swahili speakers don't usually say he/she is on a diet in Swahili. It's a cultural context thing. "kukonda" (verb meaning to slim oneself). Keep in mind that Swahili is mixture of more than 1 language; some Bantu languages, Arabic words and a few English words. Swahili also takes into account the context of the situation one is referring to and the culture of the area. I am a native Swahili speaker from the Kenyan Coast. Hope this information helps.

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She thins himself? What is that supposed to mean?


He/She is not eating. She/He is getting skinny.


I am afraid the lessons need a native English speaker versed in both US and UK English to correct some of these answers.


You're correct that the lessons need a speaker of both British & American English(es) to correct some of the answers. However, it's my humble opinion that they need not be "native" speakers... a highly proficient non-native speaker can equally do the job.


@vtopphol has good explanation. reflexive -ji- shows he is doing it to himself (ie dieting) instead of disease is causing it. A better contextual translation is 'he is on a diet'.


would you say it like this in English? To me it sounds weird, but I am not a native speaker


Rudolf, yes, it's weird. I would say something more like "he is losing weight" or "he is getting thinner".


I agree with you. The problem is that in Swahili they distinguish more clearly between "becoming thinner" and "causing to get thinner". Anajikondesha would mean literally "He causes himself to loose weight". I don't know any shorter way of saying this, and at the same time distinguish it from loosing weight because of, for instance, a disease.


"He is on a diet"


Well, for most cases this would be correct, but it doesn't cover all possibilities. There are other reasons than dieting. He could be on a hunger strike. Then losing weight is self caused, but I don't think you would say dieting in that case.

I might be wrong, since I'm not a native speaker in English nor Swahili. But I don't think I am wrong.


You're right - of course you wouldn't describe hunger strike as dieting. Swahili is elegant enough to encapsulate both benign and destructive forms of 'thinning oneself' (which isn't a phrase in English) in one word. English phrases are nuanced according to the intent behind the slimming project! By 'he's on a diet I'm just suggesting the one used in perhaps 99.9% of cases. We also very commonly say "he's trying to lose weight" but that seemed a confusing suggestion when -jaribu is not part of the Swahili construction.


"he is losing weight" was marked incorrect and reported March 2018


He is losing weight is now accepted (jan.19)


Yes it sounds odd in UK English. The 'down' is unnecessary and awkward. 'he is slimming' would be sufficient. On the other hand my Kenyan wife would tolerate 'he is slimming down' but not 'he is slimming himself down'.


Rudolph, I agree it sounds weird. In English I would say it as "he is losing weight" or "he is getting thinner."


He is slimming would be correct (British) English according to the Oxford Dictionary of English:

verb (slims, slimming, slimmed) [no object] (British) make oneself thinner by dieting and sometimes exercising: if he's overweight, he should slim | (as noun slimming) : an aid to slimming.

And this should not be translated as 'She/He is on a diet" since there are other ways to loose (and keep) weight. Like exercising or doing hard physical labour.


He is slimming himself should also be accepted - currently down is required at the end


I'm English and I would never say thay, and would think it odd if I heard someone else say it. Maybe in the US.


With hindsight, I agree. The whole thing is unnatural.


P.S. I loved your work at Man Utd.


Thank you but I am not he!


No, definitely not! One would say, "he is dieting" or "he is losing weight". But of course those are idiomatic expressions that don't correspond with the Swahili.


Yes, it does sound weird to say in English, "S/he is thinning down (herself/himself)".


I think you mean, "he is slimming himself/herself?" Thinning is not grammatically correct in English.


There is no requirement for the word down in English as you can't slim yourself up!


He makes himself thin, he losses weight. This does not translate well.


"He is slimming himself" is not allowed. It requires "down".


The English translation lrovoded here seems pretty absurd to native English speakers, who ordinarily would say things like, "S/he is slimming down" for the idea this sentence aims to express.


Thank you all for your replies and opinions. It is nice to see this not so easy and a lot of solutiona can be more or less acceptable.


This whole lesson seems judgy


what does the -esha- bit mean?


I stand corrected; what I should have said was that the two were grammatically correct - notwithstanding weirdly " un-English;" obviously 'down' is trivial here.


You're right. Not incorrect grammatically, but sounds awful!


What is wrong with "he is slimming himself?"

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