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"That police officer is smart."

Translation:Akamai kēlā mākaʻi.

April 27, 2019

12 Comments


[deactivated user]

    Could someone explain the syntax of this sentence for me please? It seems like the order is: adjective + demonstrative + noun. Is this true for all phrases with an adjective and demonstrative?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdmcowan

    Basic sentence structure (with some other formulas that will be introduced for locators and for equators) is Verb + subject + other parts of the sentence. Many words can be used as both an adjective and a verb, as is the case with "akamai". Following a noun it is the adjective "smart" and at the beginning of the sentence it is the verb "to be smart". So your breakdown of the sentence is exactly correct, except that when putting the adjective at the beginning of the sentence it is acting as an adjectival verb. Thus, "kēlā mākaʻi akamai" means, "that smart police officer" and "Akamai kēlā mākaʻi," means, "That police officer is smart."


    [deactivated user]

      Thank you so much for your quick reply! So when the order is Dem + Noun + Adj, the word is acting as a true adjective. But when the adj. comes before the demonstrative, it behaves like a verb. Got it!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdmcowan

      That's basically it, though I will caution against thinking of the adjective as being before the "demonstrative" and rather thinking of it as being at the beginning of the sentence. You could have a sentence like, "He mākaʻi akamai koʻu makua kāne." In this case, "akamai" occurs before the "demonstrative" ("koʻu") for "makua kāne", but it is not behaving like a verb. It is following the noun "mākaʻi" and is modifying that noun. It would have to be before any and all nouns in the sentence (or "at the beginning of the sentence") to be behaving like a verb.


      [deactivated user]

        Ah, okay! I do believe I understand it now. Thank you again, you are an awesome mod and contributor!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdmcowan

        Just for clarity, I hold no official position in the Hawaiian course. All of my ambassador hats are for the Klingon language. However, I am an avid student of languages/linguistics and a huge fan of Hawaiian. So as a fellow student who has already had to struggle through figuring these things out, I try to help out as I can.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KarinLynn1

        so is that the reason there's no "he" before "akamai"?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdmcowan

        If I understand correctly, putting the determiner "he" before "akamai" would mean that you were treating "akamai" as a singular noun. Would that be "a smartness"? So I would guess that "He akamai kēlā mākaʻi" would mean something like, "That police officer is a smartness." I would expect a sentence like that to be understood in either language, but seem very odd in both languages.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PunaWahine

        Explain...why is he akamai këlä mäka'i?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PunaWahine

        Can someone tell me how to change the kahako on an android? Mine shows 2 dots and it always becomes an error in spelling.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/theo248783

        If you want you could download a Hawaiian keyboard. Or just spell it as normal without any dots or lines. It will tell you that you did a spelling mistake. But that's okay.

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