Country article sample[edit source]
For Norwei (Norway):
- Norway is a country in Europe → Ngea Norwei, eiy ngea eben Iurop.
Root: tsimor, life
- i|tsimor → life (in general)
- tsimor|it OR tsimor|in → his life
- tsimor|ura → their life
- tsimor|um → your life
- Nouns beginning with ei- are feminine.
- Nouns beginning with a- are masculine.
Nouns are pluralized by two ways:
- Stating the article:
- tebeke ion - one cigarette
- arumen iti - two frigate birds
- amerumano - those two men/women
- arumae ibiya - twenty milkfish
- There are rules relating to what can be counted with the articles mentioned above. You can not speak of arumen tebeke as this means "two people cigarettes". Arumen is strictly for counting living beings. There are more than 30 sets of definite articles, each of which can be used only for particular groups of objects, depending on their physical characteristics.
A lot of words remain the same in the plural.
- Example: itsio (S) (≈ servant) → itsio (P)
- Note: To speak of "that itsio" or "those itsio" one must then state the number of them.
- For example:
- Eiy ngea amin itsio - that single man/woman who is itsio
- Amerumane itsio - these two itsio here
- For example:
- Main article: User talk:Mark#numerals
- Main article: User talk:Mark#pronouns
A word with -it means: his [word] / its [word] / her [word].
Example: Aniden = flag; anidenit = his flag ≈ flag of.
- That is almost correct. The third person singular possessive suffix is -in or -en. The -it is used when the next word begins with e or t (without trying every combination in Nauruan). Examples are:
- Amin Aiwo - person from Aiwo district
- Amit Ewa - person from Ewa district
- Iriangin Naoero - Nauruan songs
- Iriangit imago - foreign songs
- equon ima - ship of the dead
- equot epe - phosphate ship
- ewakin ditsin - kitchen
- ewakit earak - hospital
Even more common in some people's orthographies is the seperation of the possessive from the root. Therefore, some people are writing ewak it earak, iriang in Naoero and so on.
A similar rule applies to conjugating verbs that end with -n. But i can explain that later.
- ata dedar, "prayer", from dedaro, "to pray".
- ata kamarar, "mind", from kamara, "to think" or "to plan".
- tamo imin, "anything", from tamo, "any".
- imin memak, "living things", from memak, "to make".
Two corrections here:
Imin memak or, inversely, memak imin means "everything". Memak means "all".
But tamo imin is correct. Also, there is both eko imin and ekeo imin, both of which means "nothing".
Tamo means "any" or "random".
"To be" replacing pronouns[edit source]
Nauruan Grammar says that there is no auxiliary verb "to be". Instead of "to be", one has to use an absolute pronoun (e.g. eiy, urõr, ureiy etc.). This is Form 1 of the personal pronouns in Alois Kayser's grammar book. Kayser explains the use of these forms on page 200, § 78 with following examples:
- Gott eiy monibait imin memak. – God is the ruler of all things. – 3rd person singular.
- Eva me Adam urõr adamonit engame. – Adam and Eve were the first people. – 3rd person dual.
Implications of tense[edit source]
There are no real "tenses" in Nauruan, but implications of tense.
- clean (adj) - dereder
- cleaning (v.) - kadereder (it is actually being cleaned presently)
- clean (v) - kaderederin (v) - it has been cleaned
- he/she/it is currently cleaning - iret kadereder
- he/she/it will clean it - inan kadereder
- clean (v) - derederin (it is now clean)
Present tense[edit source]
The verbs remain the same as the infinitive in the six conjunctions (maybe).
Subject-Predicate Phrase[edit source]
The general word order is SVO, but a few things are to be mentioned.
If the subject is a personal pronoun, it generally stands in its third form (you can find these on page 18, § 24 in "Nauru Grammar"):
- A nuwaw. ‘I go’ (intransitive, no object)
- Wo abi eõ. ‘You beat me’ (transitive, object is eõ, accusative of aña ‘I’)
- A eõ dorer mitune edorer. ‘I don't speak this language’ (transitive, object is the noun edorer, modified by the demonstrative pronoun bitune that has the accusative form mitune)
If the subject is a noun, it is necessary to put a personal pronoun in the third form and in the same number as the noun after the noun. So the structure is the following: S (Subject=noun) → PP (Personal Pronoun in the same number as the noun) → P (predicate=verb) → O (Object, if necessary)
- Eva me Adam õr dũra. ‘Adam and Eve sinned’ (intransitive, no object, õr is the 3rd Ps. Dual pronoun following the subject).
- Iguguiya o mogur nenne. ‘Iguguiya worked yesterday.’ (transitive, but no object, o is the 3rd Ps. Sg. pronoun following the noun)