1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swahili
  4. >
  5. "I walk on two legs. I am not…

"I walk on two legs. I am not a dog!"

Translation:Ninatembea kwa miguu miwili. Mimi si mbwa!

January 21, 2019



What an interesting sentence, when will i need this?


And that's the whole point, isn't it? We tend to remember better "extreme" examples, those that are odd and require some thinking before we find a context for them. A rebellious youth, refusing his father's request to fetch something from the kitchen could easily reply, in a fit of righteous indignation: "Can't you tell me from a dog? I walk on two legs..." . One of the most hotly debated sentences in linguistics, originally due to Noam Chomsky reads "Colourless green ideas sleep furiously" . So, ours is not that bad, in comparison :-)


Why is "Mimi" required? Usually one doesn't need to write it?


These are 2 independent sentences. If you think about it, the reason we exclude pronouns often is because the verb already carries a subject prefix i.e. ninatembea. There's no way to do so for the 2nd sentence. Basically, if you remove the pronoun, does the sentence still make sense?


Thank you :-) I like your explanations very much.


I think "na miguu miwili" should be accepted.


The sentence might be a comeback of some sort. Mbwa(dog) is a common insult in Swahili speaking regions.

Learn Swahili in just 5 minutes a day. For free.