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toki pona page 2 - adjectives

The vocabulary for this page:

word meaning
ala no, not, zero
ale/ali all, everything, universe
utala fight, battle, challenge
wawa strong, powerful
suwi sweet, cute, adorable
jan person, people, humanity
mama parent, ancestor, creator, origin
meli woman, female, feminine, wife
mije man, male, masculine, husband
moku food, to eat

To define subjects and adjectives more clearly, you can add extra words as adjectives. In toki pona, an adjective that modifies a noun stands after the noun in question. This is unlike English, where adjectives go before nouns, but similar to French. So, for example:

jan wawa – strong person

Many of the nouns covered before can also function as adjectives. For example, the pronouns “mi”, “sina” and “ona” can serve as possessives.

mama mi – my parent

soweli sina – your animal

moku ona – his/her/their food

In addition, adjectives can function as nouns:

wawa sina – your strength

suli ona – his/her/their greatness/size

Of note is the phrase “jan pona”, which literally means “good person”, but is widely (and officially) accepted to also mean “friend”.

Several adjectives can be added at once:

soweli lili suwi – cute pet (“little animal”)

Here are some example sentences that demonstrate this:

mama mi li pona. - My parents are good.

kili suwi li moku pona. - Sweet fruits are good food.

jan utala li wawa. - The warrior (“fighting person”) is strong.

jan lili mi li suwi. - My children (“young people”) are cute.

soweli lili li wawa ala. - Little animals are not strong.

It is worth noting that the particle “li” is only removed if the subject is just the word “mi” or “sina”. If it has any adjectives added to it, then the particle is used.

sina pona. - You are good.

sina ale li pona. - All of you (“you all”) are good.

In addition to “mije” and “meli”, some people also use the word “tonsi” to refer to non-binary people, genderqueer people or others who don’t fit into either “man” or “woman”. See extra page 1 for more information.


Now, try to figure out the meaning of these sentences.

And try to translate the following sentences into toki pona.


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