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  5. "Rashidi alifiwa na mama yake"

"Rashidi alifiwa na mama yake"

Translation:Rashidi was bereaved of his mom

August 26, 2017



I don't even know what this sentence means in English: did Rashidi die, or his mom?


His mum. It essentially means "Rashidi was died on by his mum."


kufa = to die
kufia = to die on (someone), to affect (someone) with your death
kufiwa = to be died on (by someone), to be affected by someone's death


A very thorough explanation. Asante sana


This is extremely helpful, thank you!


The translation is incorrect: he is bereaved = anafiwa; he was bereaved = alifiwa; he has been bereaved = amefiwa.


Mama yake?? Am I missing something, shouldn't it be wake?


No, mama is in the N/N class and although it's animate, it's one of a small group of animate N/N nouns that use y and z with possessives. Most of these words are words that express relationships between people.

mama = mother
baba = father
ndugu = sibling
kaka = (older) brother
dada = (older) sister
rafiki = friend
adui = enemy

Mama yake alisema = His mother said
Mama zake walisema = His mothers said


This took a while for me to get used to. For almost every other Bantu language, family terms fall in the corresponding m-/wa- class.


And if "of" is the proper translation for "na" in this case, why is "of" not one of the listed possible translations for "na"? I would have chosen "of" or "by", if either had been a choice, but since neither was, I though my understanding of the translation was wrong, and chose one of the words listed, "and", only to find that my original translation was right, and what I typed as a result of the available choices in the definitions, was wrong!


This sentence makes no sense in English. 11032020


if "alifiwa' means "is bereaved," how does one say "was bereaved?"


Instead of the simple past, like English uses, I am guessing that Swahili here would use the -me- tense, which is for actions that happened in the past, but the results are still there effecting things in the future. They don't say "The chair WAS broken" if the chair still is broken. They say that it HAS BEEN broken: "Kiti kiMEvunjika" (or kimevunjikwa??) So I am guessing "He was bereaved" would translate, "Amefiwa (na Mama yake)".


The closest reasonable and accurate English sentence I can think of is "Rashidi was bereft of his mom," meaning when the speaker met Rashidi, Rashidi's mother had already been dead for some time. Why this would be a beginner level Swahili exercise is beyond me.


This sentence does not make sense in English.


Does "alifiwa" not mean "he/she died?"

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