Verb vs. Predicate

Language learning: How to speak Toki Pona, translation problems, advice, memory aids, tools and methods to learn Toki Pona and other languages faster
Lingva lernado: Kiel paroli Tokiponon, tradukproblemoj, konsiloj, memoraj helpiloj, iloj kaj metodoj por pli rapide lerni Tokiponon kaj aliajn lingvojn
User avatar
Posts: 262
Joined: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:30 pm
Location: mi lon ma tomo Pelin.

Verb vs. Predicate

Postby jan_Lope » Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:38 am

The static verb "to be" does not exist in Toki Pona.
Therefore not only verbs but also nouns and adjectives can be used as a predicate.

So without the static verb "to be" declarative sentences without a verb are possible in Toki Pona.
In the official Toki Pona book Sonja forms declarative sentences completely without verbs in the first four lessons. That declarative sentences cannot contain verbs is unusual for many people.

In Toki Pona, declarative sentences consist of one subject phrase and one or more predicate phrases.
The purpose of the predicate is to complete an idea about the subject. In many languages, the predicate is formed by a verb. Thus many people think a verb and a predicate is the same. But, in Russian you can also form sentences that do not contain a verb.

As we have seen above, in Toki Pona a verb is not always necessary to form a predicate.
Some people confuse the terms verb and predicate. They think that a noun or an adjective becomes a verb. This is neither logical nor necessary. The meaning would change as a result.
The fact is that many Toki Pona words are possible in different word types. However, the meaning differs depending on the type of the word.
For example:

ona li pona.

"pona" is the predicate here and can be a verb, noun or adjective here.
- The transitive verb "pona" means "to improve", "to fix", "to repair" or "to make good".
- The noun "pona" means "good", "simplicity" or "positivity".
- The adjective "pona" means "ood", "simple", "positive", "nice", "correct" or "right".

As can easily be seen, the meaning of the sentence changes when the verb "pona" is used instead of the noun "pona" as the predicate.
ona li pona. - It is the good. (The noun "pona is used.)
ona li pona. - It is fixing. (The verb "pona" is used.)

So if only verbs were allowed as a predicate, many statements would not be possible in Toki Pona.
It would also contradict the official Toki Pona book (see the first four lessons).
jan Lope
(Lessons and the Toki Pona Parser - A tool for spelling, grammar check and ambiguity check of Toki Pona)

On my foe list are the sockpuppets janKipo and janSilipu because of permanent spamming.

Return to “kama sona toki”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest