1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swahili
  4. >
  5. "A sheep is gentle"

"A sheep is gentle"

Translation:Kondoo ni mpole

November 20, 2019

4 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judy928846

I would like to get a better understanding of when to add prefixes to adjectives in this type of sentence construction. I had just been marked wrong for typing "nyama ya nyumbu ni mtamu" so I dropped the "m-" here only to get it counted wrong because DL wanted the prefix this time. It seems like a parallel example so I'm wondering if it's just DuoLingo being annoying or if there are certain words I need to know that should not include the prefix.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ernst557459

The adjective prefixes to the N/N noun class are really tricky! They depend on the first letter of the adjective. I posted an explanation some time ago: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/34122798/His-t-shirt-is-dirty

Btw: Kondoo is an N/N class but it is an animate noun (i.e. people or animals): their adjectives always get m- (mw-) in the singular and wa- in the plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judy928846

Thanks for the quick reply. I had noted (but not yet memorized) the lengthy list for N/N noun class adjective agreements and had thought I could ignore that here as the animal lesson had said that even though it might look like words were from a different class, adjective agreements for animals would be the M-Wa class. So, is the conflict here that the earlier "tamu" problem was referencing the animal as food and the animal rule no longer applies in that case?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ernst557459

Yup. The adjective adheres to the noun class of nyama which is N/N, and hardly animate (rather the opposite :)

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