Shona language noun class – Mupanda we mutauro we Shona 4


Mupanda / noun class, is the way nouns are categorized in Shona. The noun classes are numbered 1 to 21, with number 20 left out. An example of noun class #1 would the word ‘musikana’ ( girl, singular noun) with the prefix mu, its plural form, ‘vasikana’ ( girls, plural noun ) with the prefix va,  is in noun class #2. As a rule of thumb, the singular of a noun class is in the odd numbered nouns class, the plural is in the subsequent even numbered noun class.

Table 1.

# chivakashure che mupanda/ noun class prefix
1 musikana 1a tezvara
2 vasikana 2a vatezvara
3 muti
4 miti
5 ri
6 ma
7 chikoro
8 zvikoro
9 imba
10 dzimba
11 ru
12 ka
13 tu
14 u
15 ku
16 pa
17 ku
18 mu
19 svi
21 zi
  • Shingi Musunhe

    i’m very impressed by the site, but I’m worried that the way the
    tranlation works uses rules found in the enlish language… my question
    is what is the motivation for this if any… for example to tranlate “we
    like” the tranlator translates to “tino fara” as oppose to tinofara…
    “Tino” on its own does not mean anything… it implies something but
    does not have a difinite meaning…. are we not short
    changing Chishona by using rules that were not designed to structure
    our language thereby lossing the uniqueness of Chishona?? if you look
    at the english language, at the way its structured there is no word that
    stands alone like”tino” that does not have a meaning… every word that
    is separated by a space has a difinite mean becuse the rules it uses
    were desinged specifically for english… Chishona has its own rules
    that are inherent to it that shona people do not have to think about eg,
    “tinofara” as oppose to ” tino fara”… I noticed on the website that
    this uniques to Chishona was described as “errors in chishona” may i
    suggest that the error is in applying alien rules that do not capture
    the uniquesness of Chishona.. the way for example the word “WE” can be
    “ISU”, “TI” “TO” “TA” etc depending on what one is saying.. I would
    appriciate your views on this matter…find me on facebbok…. shingi musunheshingi.musunhe@facebook.com

    • vashona

      Shona
      does not have home grown orthography (the way words are spelt and
      sentences are put together). After 1980 little research has been done on
      how Shona should be written. The Shona we have now was handed down from
      the colonial days. With that in mind, it would not be right to continue on the same path from the colonial days.

      ‘Tino’, as you pointed out comes from the English pronoun ‘we’. ‘Tino’
      means ‘we do’ (something in the present). The form of ‘tino’ is
      ‘pronoun’ + ‘auxiliary verb’. In Shona, people are taught to use the
      form ‘pronoun+auxiliary verb+verb’ as one string. For example writing
      ‘tinomhanya’, ( ‘werun’ ), instead of, correctly writing, ‘tino mhanya’
      (‘we run’). This does not help students learn and use Shona.
      Language rules we have looked are not only from any language in
      particular. What we are doing is that we looked at the Shona verbs
      first, and we entered them into the dictionary, we did the same for
      nouns and for prepositions. What we discovered was that Shona (just as
      when missionaries started writing it down), is written the way is rolls
      off the tongue. For example ‘Ndiri kuenda ku chikoro’, would be written
      (incorrectly), ‘Ndirikuenda kuchikoro’. These are some of the errors we have noticed in regards to the way Shona is written. Others can be found here http://archive.lib.msu.edu/DMC/African%20Journals/pdfs/Journal%20of%20the%20University%20of%20Zimbabwe/vol29n1/juz029001002.pdfVaShona moderator

  • Majaya

    Why is mupanda number 20 omitted? what is it supposed to be?

  • aa

    fuck dic site

    l