"Tulitoleana vitabu nje"

Translation:We removed each others' books outside

January 3, 2018

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The translation into English is nonsense gramatically.


Agree. I just can't imagine a context in which someone would say this sentence in English, which means it's hard to grasp the nuance in Swahili.


What would be appropriate context for this sentence?


Natural English would be either "We took each other's books outside" or "We removed each other's books and took them outside." The verb "remove" doesn't appear to be able to be used with the destination as well, so that's why this sounds really odd in English.


Book burning during the Nazi regime.


"Each other's books" is correct English. "Each others' books" is incorrect English. "Each other" is treated as a singular noun, therefore "each other's" is correct.

[deactivated user]

    -toleana hadithi, 'tell each other a story' is a definition from Kiswahili: Msingi wa Kusema, Kusoma, na Kuandika by Thomas J. Hinnebusch and Sarah M. Mirza. So could this sentence possibly mean "We gave each other (exchanged) books outside?" Also, I can't recall for certain, but it seems to me I might have heard or seen the phrase "-toleana zawadi" (give each other presents) somewhere.


    Yes I think it means "we exchanged books outside"


    I'm pretty confounded by this translation. Is 'Outside' the current destination of the books because that where they were removed to, or was the action of removing book (what ever that means) was performed outside?


    The Hindi word निकालना is similarly confusing when used like in this sentence. I guess it has something to do with translating literally.


    हम एक दूसरे के किताब बाहर निकले ?


    Close enough. अपनी किताबें निकालो - take out your books. The standard instruction to students to take out the book for the subject being taught, from their satchels.


    But you wouldn't take out each other's books from your satchels, would you? I still can't tell what on earth the Swahili sentence is really trying to say.

    I'll go for the suggestion by dsimonds and Carolyn217 above: "We exchanged books outside".




    Each others' is wrong


    Doesn't -toleana come from -tolea which means "put forth" or "produce for". And tolea comes from -toa which means "to produce/call for/evoke"? Would this more naturally translate as "we put forth each other's books outside"? I mean, it still doesn't really sound too natural for me, but is that maybe a little closer to the meaning of -toleana?


    Kutoa is an autoantonym, either meaning “produce”, “emit” (i.e. “put out”) or “subtract”, “remove” (i.e. “take out”)

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