The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

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The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby loteni » Sat Aug 06, 2016 2:09 am

Official Toki Pona Dictionary

a or kin
PARTICLE: (emphasis, emotion or confirmation)

NOUN: non-cute animal; reptile, amphibian

ADJECTIVE: no, not, zero

VERB: to hunt, forage

ale or ali
ADJECTIVE: all; abundant, countless, bountiful, every, plentiful
NOUN: abundance, everything, life, universe

ADJECTIVE: bowing down, downward, humble, lowly, dependant

ADJECTIVE: different, altered, changed, other


ADJECTIVE: enduring, kept, protected, safe, waiting, staying
PRE-VERB: to continue to

PARTICLE: (before the direct object)

PARTICLE: (between multiple subjects)

NOUN: market, shop, fair, bazaar, business transaction

NOUN: thing, phenomenon, object, matter

ADJECTIVE: bad, negative; non-essential, irrelevant

NOUN: tool, implement, machine, device

NOUN: centre, content, inside, between; internal organ, stomach

ADJECTIVE: disgusting, obscene, sickly, toxic, unclean, unsanitary

NOUN: human being, person, somebody

ADJECTIVE: yellow, yellowish

VERB: to have, carry, contain, hold

NOUN: fish, marine animal, sea creature

VERB: to produce sound; recite, utter aloud

ADJECTIVE: arriving, coming, future, summoned
PRE-VERB: to become, manage to, succeed in

NOUN: plant, vegatation; herb, leaf

PRE-VERB: to be able to, be allowed to, can, may
ADJECTIVE: possible

PREPOSITION: to use, with, by means of

NOUN: fruit, vegetable, mushroom

NOUN: hard object, metal, rock, stone

NOUN: clay, clinging form, dough, semi-solid, paste, powder

NOUN: air, breath; essence, spirit; hidden reality, unseen agent

ADJECTIVE: colourful, pigmented, painted

NOUN: community, company, group, nation, society, tribe

NOUN: ear
VERB: to hear, listen; pay attention to, obey

PARTICLE: (between a context phrase and the main sentence)

ADJECTIVE: sleeping, resting

ADJECTIVE: blue, green

NOUN: head, mind
VERB: to control, direct, guide, lead, own, plan, regulate, rule

NOUN: cloth, clothing, fabric, textile; cover, layer of privacy

ADJECTIVE: cold, cool; uncooked, raw

PARTICLE: (between any subject except "mi" alone or "sina" alone and its

verb; also to introduce a new verb for the same subject)

ADJECTIVE: little, small, short; few; a bit; young

NOUN: long and flexible thing; cord, hair, rope, thread, yarn

NOUN: flat object; book, document, card, paper, record, website

ADJECTIVE: red, reddish

PREPOSITION: located at, present at, real, true, existing

NOUN: arm, hand, tactile organ
NUMBER: five

lukin or oko
NOUN: eye
VERB: to look at, see, examine, observe, read, watch
PRE-VERB: to seek, look for, try to

NOUN: door, hole, orifice, window

NOUN: earth, land; outdoors, world; country, territory; soil

NOUN: parent, ancestor; creator, originator; caretaker, sustainer

NOUN: money, cash, savings, wealth; large domesticated animal

NOUN: woman, female, feminine person; wife

NOUN: I, me, we, us

NOUN: man, male, masculine person; husband

VERB: to eat, drink, consume, swallow, ingest

ADJECTIVE: dead, dying

NOUN: back, behind, rear

PARTICLE: (animal noise or communication)

NOUN: moon, night sky object, star

ADJECTIVE: artistic, entertaining, frivolous, playful, recreational

ADJECTIVE: many, a lot, more, much, several, very
NOUN: quantity

PARTICLE: -th (ordinal number)
NOUN: numbers

ADJECTIVE: unusual, strange; foolish, crazy; drunk, intoxicated

NOUN: way, custom, doctrine, method, path, road

NOUN: bump, button, hill, mountain, nose, protuberance

ADJECTIVE: that, this

NOUN: name, word

NOUN: foot, leg, organ of locomotion; botom, lower part

PARTICLE: hey! O! (vocative or imperative)

VERB: to love, have compassion for, respect, show affection to

NOUN: he, she, it, they

VERB: to begin, start; open; turn on

ADJECTIVE: botched, broken, damaged, harmed, messed up

VERB: to do, take action on, work on; build, make, prepare

NOUN: long hard thing; branch, rod, stick

NOUN: cereal, grain; barley, corn, oat, rice, wheat; bread, pasta

VERB: to give, send, emit, provide, put, release


NOUN: heart (physical or emotional)
ADJECTIVE: feeling (an emotion, a direct experience)

ADJECTIVE: black, dark, unlit

ADJECTIVE: ago, completed, ended, finished, past

NOUN: bug, insect, ant, spider

NOUN: hip, side; next to, nearby, vicinity

NOUN: container, bag, bowl, box, cup, cupboard, drawer, vessel

ADJECTIVE: good, positive, useful; friendly, peaceful; simple

ADJECTIVE: interacting with the official Toki Pona book

ADJECTIVE: same, similar; each other; sibling, peer, fellow

ADJECTIVE: fire; cooking element, chemical reaction, heat source

NOUN: outer form, outer layer; bark, peel, shell, skin; boundary

PARTICLE: what? which?

NOUN: area above, highest part, something elevated
ADJECTIVE: awe-inspiring, divine, sacred, supernatural

NOUN: body (of person or animal), physical state, torso

NOUN: round or circular thing; ball, circle, cycle, sphere, wheel
ADJECTIVE: of one year

sin or namako
ADJECTIVE: new, fresh; additional, another, extra

NOUN: you

NOUN: face, foremost, front, wall

NOUN: image, picture, representation, symbol, mark, writting

VERB: to know, be skilled in, be wise about, have information on
PRE-VERB: to know how to

NOUN: animal, beast, land mammal

ADJECTIVE: big, heavy, large, long, tall; important; adult

NOUN: sun; light, brightness, glow, radiance, shine; light source

NOUN: horizontal surface, thing to put or rest something on

ADJECTIVE: sweet, fragrant; cute, innocent, adorable

PREPOSITION: by, from, because of

PARTICLE: but, however

PREPOSITION: going to, toward; for; from the perspective of

NOUN: water, liquid, fluid, wet substance; beverage

NOUN: time, duration, moment, occasion, period, situation

VERB: to communicate, say, speak, say, talk, use language, think

NOUN: indoor space; building, home, house, room


VERB: to have sexual or marital relations with

NOUN: mouth, lips, oral cavity, jaw

VERB: to battle, challenge, compete against, struggle against

ADJECTIVE: white, whitish; light-coloured, pale

ADJECTIVE: unique, united

NOUN: bird, flying creature, winged animal

ADJECTIVE: strong, powerful; confident, sure; energetic, intense

ADJECTIVE: absent, away, ignored

PRE-VERB: must, need, require, should, want, wish


I wrote this out, because I note, that many people are confused about what words actually officially mean. Also the official book states this dictionary is in the public domain, but I could not find it anywhere.

1. The order of the definitions are important, sometimes the word has its ADJECTIVE listed before its NOUN, other times words have these things in reverse order.
2. Pay attention to the use of ";" - which divides a word into semantic groups, each word in a particular semantic grouping is reflective of a concept, which itself can apply to many words in english.

mi li pana e tomo tawa sina --- this context free, means : I give a house to you. note "tawa" is first defined as a PREPOSITION, and then an ADJECTIVE. -- this is from a "popular" criticism of TP ambiguity, where obviously we have already, for some reason decided on everything else, only confused as to if we are giving; a house to you, OR: your car.

Officially there are rules that enable us to greatly expand this dictionary, this is the core dictionary that provides the platform for that. If we just add in derived words as if they are foundational ones, we will ruin the coherency of the dictionary.
For instance; mani is a verb meaning to buy. esun is a verb meaning to sell. These are derived from their noun forms.

If you do not have the official book, I highly recommend you get it, if you want to learn of the full power of Toki Pona.

There are in existence other dialects which uses words in quite different ways, however this post is about the official dialect from the official book of Toki Pona, by Sonja Lang. So I respectfully request, that if you want to provide information on other dialects you make your own thread for that. In my opinion the official dialect is the most expressive.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby janKipo » Sat Aug 06, 2016 10:54 am

I'll skip over the official bit,having dealt with it before.
Again, I admire your adulation of Sonja, but have trouble seeing its source beyond gratitude for creating the language. I don't see, for example, much evidence that word order in the definitions reflects any linguistic reality: frequency of use, semantic centrality, historical source or even accuracy. At least not consistently enough to indicate a plan.
The list has been published several times on Facebook and is available from the reference section of tomo lipu and on other websites, but it is good to have it out in the open again. But a fuller word list is also desirable just to read the most common stuff out there.
So far as I can find, you are the first to suggest that 'mani' is a verb meaning "buy" and I can't figure out where you get it from. 'mani' is about wealth, not transactions (that is 'esun'). Verbs might include "becoming wealthy' or "making something a symbol of wealth" or the like, but not just simply buying something. 'esun' on the other hand is exactly about transactions, including the place where they occur and the various things involved. Unfortunately, it is symmetric, so that it is not easy to derive a notion of either buying or selling from it, though various attempts have been made. You don't explain how you got to "sell", but it is as good a guess as any, I'm sure.
It appears that (as is usually the case) you find the "official dialect" the most expressive simply because you use if very loosely, with little regard to what it does and does not say. That is fine up to a point but is better done honestly and overtly than claiming that what you do is there already.

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby loteni » Sat Aug 06, 2016 1:30 pm

I don't really want to get into a debate about dialects here, as I mentioned in the OP.

I know nothing about Sonja, I'm not interested in celebrities. So she invented this language and wrote this book, and sure i've studied the book a bit, so I know she is extremely intelligent, very kind and dangerously altruistic.

This list is an EXACT copy of the dictionary in the official book. Okay, i added the ":" after the POS names, for clarity, and I removed newlines between the word being defined and its definition. Everything else, including commas, semicolons, and order is exactly the same as in the dictionary at the back of the official book. If you add words, remove words, make up your own words that you believe are summing up things, change the order of words, change the order of POS list, add POS, remove POS.... any of this and it is no longer the correct dictionary, but a totally ruined one, of much less utility than this one.

I pay very close attention to what the book actually says and explains, and use the language super strictly as Sonja has laid it out.

I think you prefer your own severely crippled idiolect, because you prefer to be in control of it and you have little regard for how the official language actually works. That is fine up to a point, but you really should do this overtly and honestly, instead of claiming what you propagate is "correct". Since you steer people away from the super expressive and rich experience of the actual language, into a decrepit husk subset with errors language of your own making.

You have managed to understand almost nothing of the book, and as a result you know nothing about the official language. Yet you write posts such as "the poo of pu", and routinely steer people away from the book and official dialect. Since you do not know mani means buy, let alone esun means sell, you clearly do not know the greater proportion of meanings and uses for the words in toki pona.

I suggest you hedge your sentences with ; "in kipo's simplified dialect". Stop "teaching" things you have no clue about. And do yourself a favour and learn toki pona. As it stands at the moment you are only able to help people with basic beginner level queries, beyond that you are out of your depth.
Last edited by loteni on Sun Aug 07, 2016 5:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

Posts: 2741
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:20 pm

Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby janKipo » Sat Aug 06, 2016 2:08 pm

Errh, do you ever even look at actual living toki pona as practiced on the various websites (and maybe elsewhere)? Or do you, if some happens to come within your ken, simply dismiss it as debased, impure and nonsensical?

Having worked with Sonja for a long time (when she was having anything to do with tp at all, which was fairly discontinuously) and having edited and argued with her about just about everything in the book, though always deferring to her decisions, since it was about her idiolect, I am inclined to think that I understand the book pretty well. I may forget a detail, like a case where 'mani' is used to mean "buy" or 'esun' "sell" (where are those, by the way?), generally, I think I'm pretty sound. And I don't think (and don't think Sonja thinks) that the book is perfect or complete and certainly that it is binding on anyone else's idiolect beyond various broad defining strokes. You say that the dialect of the books is the most expressive but then condemn any use of it to express anything beyond what is already there -- except for your own innovations, of course.

Since the language I try to describe and prescribe is a living, functioning language, it does not appear to me to be crippled in any way. Could it be used to do more? Maybe, but binding it back to pu hardly seems to be the way forward as opposed to pushing the boundaries that pu suggests. What I do is tell people how other people, those with whom they are trying to communicate, use the language. I don't criticize people for not following pu if following pu at that point is not what people do (OK, there are some limits: 'li', 'e', 'pi', NA and probably a few more). I don't control this dialect (or, actually, several dialects, since there are a range of variations in some areas) but report on it and note how it goes. I do enter into discussions about what is the right way to go and have my own opinions on some of those issues, but I don't always win and duly note the winning position and use it as the future guide.

As for matters beyond the elementary level, take a look at what I have written. You may disagree with some or all of the discussion, but at least you will note that I have tried to deal with things that pu not only doesn't cover but does not even seem to be aware of. When will we see your suggestions on some of these "advanced" topics?

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby loteni » Sat Aug 06, 2016 2:43 pm

Yeah, I do see how people use the language... etc... People use it at different proficiency levels, this is to be expected.

I am well aware that you have done amazing things for the language and its popularity. That without your work with the language, it would be in a very much poorer state. I greatly appreciate you and thank you. I love your logical approach, and you are extremely helpful.

And yes, I agree that is better for everyone to have fun creating and exploring with the language how they wish to.
Although Sonja does state the official dialect in pu, is a "completed form", and quite rightly. She obviously is very clever and mapped everything out nicely.

I call your dialect crippled merely because it is a subset of pu. Although it very slowly increases it size, and contains more of the information in pu as time progresses, it also has a few places where it contradicts pu. If your dialect keeps expanding as it is, maybe in a few decades it will catch up to pu dialect.

I've read your blog completely, it was very interesting to learn from, also intriguing that it reports on usage which is no where near the boundaries of the official dialect. Although of course that doesnt mean that people havent reached them boundaries, I fully expect lots of people have, you just wouldnt notice them. You'd either think, what they was saying was strange poetry, gibberish, something else, or just incorrect.

You cannot say what pu doesn't cover, or isn't aware of. Many of the things you struggle with are clearly answered in pu, you just fail to see it. I only know about 20%, maybe less of what pu does cover, I've read it hundreds of times...

My advanced suggestions ? Well for a start, you can look up at the OP here, other times I am constantly explaining things to you, and you just refuse to accept them -- like the other day when you destroyed word meanings, because you didn't want to admit you were clearly wrong about semantic blobbing.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby janKipo » Sat Aug 06, 2016 3:27 pm

Well, thank you for the compliments. I am just doing what I can and am trained to do.
Where does Sonja say pu is a completed form in any strict sense? She seems rather to say, "Here is the basics; go do what you will with it." (62).
I am at a loss to see what is in pu that is not in "my dialect" (i.e., what the community is actually writing). On the other hand, it is easy to find things in that dialect that are not in pu. so, I conclude that you mean by "what is in pu" not merely what is explicitly allowed or encouraged but also prohibitions against anything that is not explicitly allowed or encouraged. This seems to me a misreading of everything that Sonja has written and of the history of toki pona since 2001. But, for now, can you point to some positive lacks wrt pu?

I do occasionally get puzzled by what people say and ask them what they were shooting for. Generally (but not always) it turns out they were doing something very unpu. And when they can explain in terms of pu, I alter my understanding accordingly. So, yes, I probably have not probed all the boundaries of pu, though I think I have hit quite a few that others have missed so far. And I always try to catch up As I say repeatedly, I learn something new about tp every week. But I am not sure that Sonja knows some of these things already and just didn't bother to mention them or hid them away for the elite or some such thing. That doesn't seem to be her pattern. But I do think that there are potentials in pu that haven't been touched and others that have been worked out but that some people object to as being unpu. My position is that anything that is not against what is explicit in pu is probably OK tp eventually, though it may take a while to figure out how it fits in.

What is OP?

If I refuse to accept something you say. it is usually because I don't understand it or because, having understood it, I know it is wrong. I forget which side of things you were on on word blobbing and so just what you mean. I suppose that you think that words in tp are all polysemous, as they appear to be from English or transcendental linguistics, rather than usually monosemous within the language itself. Why is this a problem? Some words in tp are clearly polysemous ('poka' springs to mind) but most are not, even though we need several different words to translate each of them into English in different contexts. But that is just the way of translations and says nothing interesting about the languages involved. I take tp seriously as a language in is own right, not as a failed code for English (etc.).

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby loteni » Sat Aug 06, 2016 5:45 pm

Well, I want to make it clear, that I have the utmost respect and appreciation for you.

The preface text in the book is full of interesting insights; page 7:
"In this book, I hope to present the language in its completed form. This is the way I use Toki Pona."

In the book it presents various examples, the dictionary and the rules, which are generative of a completed form of Toki Pona, hence it is actually in there. Sonja had all sorts of constraints obviously, when writing the book. She wanted to present a completed form of Toki Pona, but wanted a small book, and she also payed particular attention to not upsetting the community, so she compressed the information in there which when expanded encapsulates as much of the other usages as subsets of the language, as possible.
She didn't want to upset people and knows how language develops, so she cleverly compressed it such that the decompression is as close as possible to how a pidgin language expands in time anyway. In this way dialects that totally wanted to have nothing do with pu, would tend to converge on pu dialect, in time, anyway. Unifying the community.

Now she has a superior understanding of the good, and the logical, so she encoded the information using the protocols of the nice, that way people innately; only the friendly would be able to decrypt it, and given the rarity of those people that actually consciously know of the protocols of nice, then they could not convince anyone else that their dialect was incorrect.

For someone to be able to do these things in this day and age, is pretty amazing! Pu is a seriously sublime book!

OP == Original Post, hence my post at the start of this thread, with the reproduced official Toki Pona dictionary, and some notes.

Oh, the only two words that are not multi meaning; excellently clever and telling are these: mu, and pu :D
Weakly we can add tu and sina, this gives us a message: sina tu mu e pu :P
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby janKipo » Sat Aug 06, 2016 6:11 pm

Ahah! Having just come from a revival meeting, I see that I am in another one now. All hail all-wise, all-clever Sonja, who has created a scheme that will inevitably unfold in the way she envisioned it a couple of years ago and which she (for her own mysterious reasons) chose not to reveal in her book, almost half of which could have been omitted to make room for more of this valuable information. Well, idolatry is not my pidgin, so I'll just pass on all that and say that in my world pu is a good base and we will see what comes of it and be pleasnatly (I hope surprised) So will, I hope, Sonja. And maybe even you, if you ever try anything with it.

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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby loteni » Sat Aug 06, 2016 6:19 pm

Your thinking the worst of people is the very thing that causes you to be unable to read pu. I'm not saying pu is perfect, I am merely saying that it is not as bankrupt as you think it is. If you cannot accept others have value, you will fail to notice that which is valuable.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

Posts: 2741
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Re: The Official Toki Pona Dictionary

Postby janKipo » Sat Aug 06, 2016 6:32 pm

Who are you talking about? I don't think the worst of people, but I do eventually realize when I am dealing with a locked in personality. I don't think pu is bankrupt, merely not all it could have been. And yet it is the source of an ever growing language, just not one that the creator planned out. If I seriously didn't think others had value, I wouldn't try to help them nor apay attention to them long after it should have been clear that I was not getting through the bubble. Sorry, I just don't have the patience to keep pounding my head against your wall. I wish you well in tp and I will look in on you again if you start actually doing some.

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