Ring A: 3/20: toki pona

Jim Henry
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[ toki pona | Smooth English | From Þrjótrunn | Grammar | Vocabulary | Abbrevs. ]

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toki pona

wan tan toki awen: nasin ni la jan li wan e meli e mije

wan pi nanpa wan

tenpo ni la, jan lawa pi nasin sewi li pana e sike pi kiwen jelo tawa mije. (jan lawa pi nasin sewi li pona e sike pi kiwen jelo.) mije li pana e ona tawa meli ona. mije li toki e ni:

mi [nimi mije] li wan e mi e sina [nimi meli]. tenpo pona la, tenpo ike la, tenpo suno la, tenpo pi anpa telo la, tenpo pi mani mute la, tenpo pi mani ala la, mi tawa lon poka sina. mi en sina li jo e kon wan e sijelo wan. mi toki lon e ni: tenpo ni la, tenpo ali la, mi pana e olin mi e pona mi tawa sina.

meli li toki sama tawa ona:

mi [nimi meli] li wan e mi e sina [nimi mije]. tenpo pona la, tenpo ike la, tenpo suno la, tenpo pi anpa telo la, tenpo pi mani mute la, tenpo pi mani ala la, mi tawa lon poka sina. mi en sina li jo e kon wan e sijelo wan. mi toki lon e ni: tenpo ni la, tenpo ali la, mi pana e olin mi e pona mi tawa sina.

wan pi nanpa tu

tenpo ni la, jan lawa pi nasin sewi li toki e ni:

mi mute o toki tawa jan sewi!

jan mute li toki anu kalama musi e ni:

jan sewi Konsewi o weka e walo tan kon sewi.
jan sewi Suno o suno lon ali.
jan sewi Selisuli o pakala ala e ona tu.
jan sewi Kasimoku o suli e ona tu.
jan sewi Mun o, tenpo pimeja la o suno.
jan sewi Telosuli o, tawa lon telo suli sina la o pona.
jan sewi Kontawa o pana e kon tawa len ona. o lete e lawa ona tu.
jan sewi Makasisuli o pana e pimeja tawa ona tu.
o weka e ike tan ona tu.
jan sewi Kamapona o pana e pona tawa ona tu.
jan sewi Olinunpa pi sike pi kiwen jelo o wan e ona tu.
jan lili nasa en jan anpa nasa o lawa e ona tu tawa pona.
tenpo ni la ona tu li kama tawa wan lon olin.
mi mute li wile e ni: tenpo ni la, tenpo ali la, ona tu li pona ni.

Smooth Translation

Section from a text: In this way one unites a woman and man

Section one

Now the priest gives the circlet of gold to the man. (The priest blesses the circlet of gold.) The man gives it to his woman. The man says:

I [man's name] unite myself and you [woman's name]. In good times, in bad times, in sunny times, in rainy times, in times of much money, in times of no money, I go at your side. I and you have one soul and one body. I say truly: Now and always I give my love and my goodness to you.

The woman says the same to him:

I [woman's name] unite myself and you [man's name]. In good times, in bad times, in sunny times, in rainy times, in times of much money, in times of no money, I go at your side. I and you have one soul and one body. I say truly: Now and always I give my love and my goodness to you.

Section two

Now the priest says:

We shall talk to the gods!

The people say or sing:

Sky-god, remove the whiteness from the sky.
Sun-god, shine on life.
Fire-god, hurt them not.
Crop-god, make them grow.
Moon-god, shine in the night.
Ocean-god, when one travels by sea, be calm.
Wind-god, put air in their sails. Cool their heads.
Forest-god, give them shade. Remove evil from them.
God of good-fortune, give them blessing.
Love-god of the golden circlet, unite them.
Little strange people and little deep people, guide them to goodness.
Now they begin to go together in love.
We desire this: now and always, they should be thus fortunate.

Translation from Þrjótrunn

Section from a wedding rite

Part 1

Now the priest gives to the bridegroom the golden necklace, which has just been blessed, and the bridegroom puts it on his bride, and he recites thusly:

I, Marcus, bind myself today to you, Mary, in happy and sad times, in sun and rain, health and sickness, wealth and poverty, and will go together with a single spirit and a single body. I swear to give you my love and my honor now and forever.

And the bride says the same to him:

I, Mary, bind myself today to you, Marcus, in happy and sad times, in sun and rain, health and sickness, wealth and poverty, and will go together with a single spirit and a single body. I swear to give you my love and my honor now and forever.

Part 2

Now the priest says:

We pray!

And all the people present pray or sing thusly:

Jupter, be always clear,
Phoebus, shine in life,
Vulcan, do not hinder them,
Ceres, help them to grow,
Diana, shine at night,
Neptune, be calm when they sail on your surface,
Aeolus, fill the sails, cool their faces,
Faunus, give them shade and protection,
Fortuna, be good to them,
Venus in the golden necklace of love, bind them together,
Elves and hidden people, guide them to blessing,
when they begin to go together with love and trust.
So may they be now and eternally.

Grammar

Toki Pona is a purely isolating language with no inflection. Because of its closed root vocabulary, it makes extensive use of phrasal compounds. (Phonologically and orthographically they remain phrases of distinct words, though semantically the less perspicuous compounds could be regarded as distinct lexical items. Phrasal compounds used as proper names are written as a single word, however.)

Within phrases, heads precede their modifiers: so noun-adjective, and verb-adverb. A pronoun in modifier position has a genitive/possessive sense.

Toki Pona follows a strict word order, with use of separator particles to demarcate different parts of the sentence:

[<adverbial> la] <subject> li <verb> [e <object>] [<other preposition> <object of other preposition>]

That is, "la" marks the boundary between the optional adverbial phrase if present, and the subject; "li" marks the boundary between the subject and verb; and "e" marks the direct object, if present. Other prepositional phrases,if present, follow the verb and direct object.

The separator particle "li" is omitted when the subject is simply "mi" or "sina" (but not if the subject is a phrase of two or more words including one of those pronouns, e.g. "mi en sina" or "mi mute").

The adverbial phrases which begin a sentence and are followed by "la" can indicate the conditions under which the following sentence is true (equivalent to "if") or (perhaps more commonly) the time when its action happens (equivalent to "when").

Canonically, one can have multiple "li" + <verb> phrases, and multiple "e" + <direct object> phrases in a single sentence; this can be read as "subject does this action and that action" or "subject does this action to this object and that object" with no actual word for "and" required. I sometimes use multiple <adverbial> + "la" phrases in a single sentence, but this is not universally accepted practice.

The particle "o" has both a vocative and an imperative use.

<addresee> o <imperative verb> [e <direct object>] [other prepositional phrases]

o <imperative verb> (etc.)

Another separator particle requires special explanation; "pi" is used in phrases of three or more words to indicate that the following phrase is to be interpreted as a whole adjective or adverb modifying the previous word or phrase. For instance,

tomo  jan    lili
house person small

would signify "small people-house" (both adjectives modifying "tomo"), whereas

tomo  pi  jan    lili
house of  person small

would signify "house of small people (or a small person)".

"pi" is used with the noun "nanpa" ("number") and a following number-word (or phrase) to form ordinal numbers.

Toki Pona does not have complex sentences; but the colon ':' is used as inter-sentence punctuation indicating a close relationship between the previous and following sentences, usually that the following sentence expands on the abstract object of the previous sentence.

Proper names are used only as modifiers (not as stand-alone nouns), and are the only words written with an initial capital letter.

For more information, see http://www.tokipona.org

Vocabulary

ala adj. no, not
ali adj. all, every; n. life, the universe, everything
anpa n. bottom, lower part, descent; adj. low, lower, descending; vi. to fall, descend
anu conj. or
awen v. to go one, continue; adj. continuous, extended
e accusative preposition
en conj. and
ike adj. bad, complex, evil, unhealthy; n. evil, badness
jan n. person, people; adj. personal, human
jelo adj. yellow, golden, light green
jo v. have, possess, contain
kalama n. sound, noise, voice; v. make sound, noise
kama v. come, become, happen, begin, start
kasi n. plants, fungi, growing things
kiwen n. rock, metal; adj. hard, unyeilding, made of rock or metal
kon n. air, vapor, gas; soul, spirit
la separator particle; see grammar overview
lawa n. head; adj. head, chief, primary; vt. guide, lead, direct
len n. clothes; fabric; covering; sails
lete adj. cool, cold; vt. to cool, chill, make cold(er)
li separator particle; see grammar overview
lili adj. small, short, young, few
lon prep. at, in, near, on; n. truth; adj. present, existent, true
ma n. place, land, country; countryside, rural area
mani n. money, wealth, riches
meli adj. female; n. woman, wife, bride, girlfriend
mi pron. I, me
mije adj. male; n.. man, husband, bridegroom, boyfriend
moku v. eat; n. food, meal; adj. pertaining to food & eating
mun n. moon
musi v. play; n. playing, amusement, art
mute adj. many, several; plural marker (usually optional)
nanpa n. number; pi nanpa wan, first; pi nanpa tu, second
nasa adj. strange, foreign, mad; n. strangeness, madness, exotica
nasin n. way, path, road, method, procedure
nasin sewi n. religion, philosophy
ni pron. and dem.: this, that; adj.: thusly, such-like
nimi n. name, word
o vocative/imperative particle; see grammar overview
olin n. love; vt. to love
ona pron. he, she, it, they
pakala vt. damage, mess up, hinder, hurt; vi. break down, fall apart
pana v. give, put, send, emit
pi adjectival prep.; see grammar overview
pimeja adj. black, dark; n. darkness, shadow
poka n. side, flank, hip; position next to something
pona adj. good, simple, calm, tranquil; vt. improve, do good to, repair, bless; vi. be good; n. goodness, honor, simplicity
sama adj. same, similar
seli adj. hot, warm; n. fire, heat, warmth; vt. heat up, set afire
sewi adj. high; religious, formal
sijelo n. body; adj. physical, corporeal, bodily
sike adj. round, circular; n. circle, disc, ring, torus
sina pron. you
suli adj. big, tall, large, important; vt. cause to grow, enlarge
suno n. sun; v. shine; adj. luminous, bright
tan prep. from, out of, away from
tawa prep. to, toward; v. go, move, travel
telo n. water; adj. liquid, watery
tenpo n. time, period
toki v. talk, speak; n. language, utterance, speech, saying
tu adj. two; vt. divide, separate
unpa n. sex; vt. to have sex with
walo adj. white; n. whiteness, white things
wan adj. one, united, together; n. part, section, piece, unit; vt. unite, connect, bind
weka vt. remove, take away
wile v. want, wish, desire; must, should; n. will, desire, duty, need

Abbreviations

adj. adjective or adverb
conj. conjunction
dem. demonstrative
n. noun
prep. preposition
pron. pronoun
v. verb
vi. intransitive verb
vt. transitive verb

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February 19th, 2007
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