"Good morning grandmother?"

Translation:Habari za asubuhi bibi?

July 16, 2018

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What is the difference between habari ya and habari za? Is it to do with gender?


not at all (nothing in Swahili is gendered), the prefix of '-a' following a noun is completely dependent of that noun, and is governed by noun classes.

Usually for the noun class 'I/Zi', 'ya' is singular and 'za' is plural i.e.

Nyumba ya mwalimu (a teacher's house) - nyumba za walimu (teachers' houses)

In this case, 'habari ya' and 'habari za' are interchangeable since 'habari' is 'news' which technically isn't countable

The depth with which Duolingo covers noun classes is definitely lacking, and honestly even when I was formally learning the language as a kid, understanding noun classes was a pivotal point in my learning


I came here to ask the same thing, and your answer made it so much more clear for me, thanks!


when people say "-a", does that mean any two letter word i find in swahili ending with the letter "a" will mean "of"


Re: nothing in Swahili is gendered - this depends on your notion of Gender. You are right if you think of "gender" in terms of masculine vs. feminine (or male vs. female). However, from very early on Bantu linguists have conceived of noun class distinctions as gender disctinctions. I quote:
... Bantu languages may be termed class gender languages. (Clement M. Doke, Bantu linguistic terminology sv. GENDER, 1935).
With this in mind you might even argue that everything in Swahili is gendered!


Doesnt " habari za asubuhi bibi ? " means how's the morning grandmother? Why is it translated " good morning grandmother ? " ?


The literal transalation is "How is the morning grandmother?" but the spoken transalation could be "Good morning, grandmother."


Why is asubuhi njema bibi incorrect?


Because asubuhi njema means "have a good morning", meaning you are literally wishing a good morning. Habari za asubuhi is a way just to wave at someone just as "good morning". The difference is very thin, I hope I made it clear


I think it should be accepted


Actually from my understanding when we meet someone in the morning we ask for his status: habari means news so we ask him: (how are) the news of the morning (your news..this morning). That explains why it is a question. Once we end the conversation we wish the person a good morning and we tell him: Asubuhi njema (wishing you "a good morning").


Typically Bibi is wife, Grandmother is Nyanya.


It depends where. In Kenya, this is generally more common:

bibi = wife
nyanya = grandmother

Whereas in Tanzania, it's generally:

bibi = grandmother
mke = wife
nyanya = tomato

Just a generalisation though. Most people who speak Swahili speak it as a second language, and among native speakers, there are pretty diverse dialects.


Yes. I have come to realise that East Congolese Swahili is different from the Swahili I have learned here in some ways.


Thanks for the explanation of the dialects. I was wondering why they were calling their grandmother a tomato :)


bibi is also grandmother


Why is it wrong when I say asubuhi njema bibi ??? Asubuhi njema is like good morning


you're directly translating it, but the meaning does not translate the same. 'Asubuhi njema bibi' means 'Have a good morning grandmother'


How is morning grandmother?


That is not what would be said in English. 'How is your morning?' would be better. There has to be a word between 'is' and 'morning'. Even so it is not a greeting I use.


Grandmother in swahili is 'nyanya" and not bibi. Bibi means 'wife" in English


You are referring to the kenyan swahili, tanzanian one is actually different: Bibi means Granmother Mke means wife

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Why does the English sentence end with a question mark if it is not a question? Shouldn't the English version BE a question?


To me the English sentence given is just wrong. Good morning is a greeting but not a question. That is very confusing because DL is writing something different than they want to know


Was ist der unterschied zwischen habari za und habari ya???

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