rnd's website logotoki pona page 1 - basic sentences

The vocabulary for this page:

word meaning
mi I, me, us
sina you
ona he, she, they, it
li (between subj. and verb/adj.)
pona good, simple, to improve, to fix
ike bad, evil, complex, unnecessary
suli big, great, important, to grow
lili small, few, young, to shrink
kili fruit, vegetable, mushroom
soweli land mammal, animal

Let's start with the most basic sentence structure in toki pona:

[noun] li [noun / adjective].

In English, this would mean:

[Noun] is (a) [noun].


[Noun] is [adjective].

For example:

ona li suli. - (He/she/it/they) is (big/great/important).

As you can see, a single word can have multiple related meanings. In practical usage, both "ona" and "suli" will be more clear based on context.

kili li pona. - (Fruit/vegetable/mushroom)(s) (is/are) good.

And in this case, it doesn't make a lot of sense to use any meaning of "pona" other than "good".

There is an exception to the rule. If the subject is "mi" or "sina", then it is not necessary to add the word "li". So, instead of

sina li suli. - You are important.


sina suli. - You are important.


Now, how would you express the following ideas?

  • Animals are important.
  • He is little.
  • I am great.
  • It is a dog.
  • You are bad.


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