Miskito/Lesson 2

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Miskitu Aisas!

Miskito Language Course

Lesson 1 Bandera regne Miskito.png 2 Buk ba tibil ra sa
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Contents The book is on the table

In, on and at[edit]

Study
What do they mean?
  • John is in the room.
  • My father is in the house.
  • The book is on the table.
  • The dog is on the ground.
  • My mother is at the window.
  • The woman is at the door.
  • John rum ra sa.
  • Aisiki utla ra sa.
  • Buk ba tibil ra sa.
  • Yul ba tasba ra sa.
  • Yaptiki windar ra sa.
  • Mairin ba dur ra sa.
Practice Combine the two nouns to form a sentence, then say what it means. E.g. Mary / rum -> Mary rum ra sa. (Mary is in the room.)
  1. Pedro / utla
  2. tibil / rum
  3. yul / utla
  4. waitna / dur
  5. buk / tasba
  6. Lucia / windar
Answers
  1. Pedro utla ra sa. (Pedro is in the house.)
  2. Tibil ba rum ra sa. (The table is in the room.)
  3. Yul ba utla ra sa. (The dog is in the house.)
  4. Waitna ba dur ra sa. (The man is at the door.)
  5. Buk ba tasba ra sa. (The book is on the ground.)
  6. Lucia windar ra sa. (Lucia is at the window.)

The very common word ra is equivalent to several English prepositions, including in, on and at. But it is not placed before but after the word it goes with, e.g. rum ra in the room.

  • Because of its position, such a word is not called a preposition but a "postposition".
  • Sometimes people write ra attached to the preceding word, e.g. tibil ra or tibilra on the table.



Plural nouns[edit]

Study
What do they mean?
  • The book is on the table.
  • The books are on the table.
  • This woman is poor.
  • These women are poor.
  • The dogs are in the house.
  • The dogs are in the houses.
  • The dog is an animal.
  • Dogs are animals.
  • This man is an American.
  • These men are Americans.
  • Buk ba tibil ra sa.
  • Buk nani ba tibil ra sa.
  • Mairin na umpira sa.
  • Mairin nani na umpira sa.
  • Yul nani ba utla ra sa.
  • Yul nani ba utla nani ra sa.
  • Yul ba daiwan sa.
  • Yul nani ba daiwan nani sa.
  • Waitna na miriki sa.
  • Waitna nani na miriki nani sa.
Practice Translate, then put nani after the word in italics and translate again.
  1. Tibil ba rum ra sa.
  2. Tibil nani ba rum ra sa.
  3. Tuktiki ba miriki sa.
Answers
  1. (The table is in the room.)
    Tibil nani ba rum ra sa. (The tables are in the room.)
  2. (The tables are in the room.)
    Tibil nani ba rum nani ra sa. (The tables are in the rooms.)
  3. (My child is an American.)
    Tuktiki nani ba miriki nani sa. (My children are Americans.)

Nani placed after a noun makes it plural: buk book, buk nani books. Other words stay the same as in the singular, e.g. na can mean either "this" or "these" (mairin na this woman, mairin nani na these women) and sa means either "is" or "are" (Buk ba ... sa The book is... vs. Buk nani ba ... sa The books are...).

We, they, these and those[edit]

Study
What do they mean?
  • We are young!
  • We are in the room.
  • She/he is poor.
  • They are poor.
  • This is an American.
  • These are Americans.
  • Yawan tiara sa!
  • Yawan rum ra sa.
  • Witin umpira sa.
  • Witin nani umpira sa.
  • Naha ba miriki sa.
  • Naha nani ba miriki sa.
Practice Translate:
  1. Witin utla ra sa.
  2. Witin nani rum ra sa.
  3. Baha nani ba tuktiki nani sa.
  4. Yawan miriki nani sa.
Answers
  1. She/He is in the house.
  2. They are in the room.
  3. Those are my children.
  4. We are Americans.

The only intrinsically plural pronoun in Miskito is yawan meaning we (inclusive), i.e. we in the sense of you and me, we INCLUDING YOU.

  • With yawan the verb form stays the same as for the third person, so Yawan ... sa We are....

To say "they", on the other hand, we must put nani after the third person pronoun witin. Other pronouns, such as naha and baha, are also pluralised by postposing nani.

  • The use of the definite article ba does not always correspond to that of "the" in English. Thus in Miskito we can say naha ba (literally "the this").


Isn't/aren't[edit]

Study
What do they mean?
  • This book is not big.
  • My name is not Pedro.
  • This is not John.
  • The books are not on the table.
  • The table is not in a house.
  • We are not Americans.
  • Buk na tara apia sa.
  • Nini Pedro apia sa.
  • Naha John apia sa.
  • Buk nani ba tibil ra apia sa.
  • Tibil ba utla kum ra apia sa.
  • Yawan miriki nani apia sa.
Practice Translate these sentences, then make them negative and translate again.
  1. Tibil ba rum ra sa.
Answers
  1. (The table is in the room.)
    Tibil ba rum ra apia sa. (The table is not in the room.)

The negative of sa is, are is apia sa is not or isn't, are not or aren't.



Vocabulary and review[edit]

not
n
door
n
American (from the US)
plural marker
post
in, on, at
n
room
n
ground, floor
n
table
n
house
n
window
pron
we (inclusive)


Say in Miskito
Review
My children are not in the room.

Tuktiki nani (ba) rum ra apia sa.

The dog is in the door.

Yul ba dur ra sa.

The books are on the floor.

Buk nani ba tasba ra sa.

They are not on the table.

Witin nani (ba) tibil ra apia sa.

These Americans are in the house.

Miriki nani na utla ra sa.

Those are not Americans.

Baha nani miriki nani apia sa.

She is not young.

Witin tiara apia sa.

We are in the room; they are at the door.

Yawan ba rum ra sa; witin nani ba dur ra sa.


Lesson 1 Flag of the Mosquito Monarchy.svg
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Contents