lesson 6 - the particle pi


prev 󱥐 󱤪 index 󱤪 󱤖 next


󱤄 ale - all; abundant, countless, bountiful, every, plentiful; abundance, everything, life, universe

󱥐 pini - ago, completed, ended, finished, past

󱤪 lipu - flat object; book, document, card, paper, record, website

󱤔 kala - fish, marine animal, sea creature

󱤌 ijo - thing, phenomenon, object, matter, something; being, entity, someone

󱥌 pana - give, send, emit, provide, put, release

󱤗 kasi - plant, vegetation; herb, leaf

~ particles

󱥍 pi - regroups modifiers

~ notes

ijo is the most generic word. it can stand in as a placeholder for anything or anyone.


~ the particle pi

pi is a really useful particle that regroups modifiers.

normally, each modifier modifies the sum of all the previous words in the phrase. the particle pi creates a second phrase which modifies the first phrase.

ijo pona mute

~ many good things

ijo pi pona mute

~ very good thing

in the first example, mute modifies ijo pona, while in the second example, pona mute modifies ijo.

~ definition of phrase

when i say phrase, i mean a collection of a main word + modifiers, like jan or ilo moku.

~ note about long phrases

it's a common mistake to try to cram as much information as possible into just one phrase. try to avoid this!

if you want to be more easily understood, it's often better to describe concepts in sentences, and then refer back to previously described concepts with a concise phrase which makes sense within the context you've established.

~ examples

mi toki e ijo pi pona mute

~ i talk about a very good thing

mi toki e ijo pona mute

~ i talk about many good things

mi toki e ijo mute pi pona mute

~ i talk about many things which are very good


~ translate from toki pona to english

kasi telo li ken moku

seaweed is edible

soweli li pana e lipu pi sona mute

the animal is handing out documents with lots of knowledge

jan pi sona kala li sona e ni · kala li ken moku e jan

the marine biologist knows that fish can eat people

ona li waso pi suwi mute

they're a really cute bat

ale li kama kala

everyone is turning into fish

ijo sin pi mute pona li kama

a good amount of new people are arriving

~ translate from english to toki pona

i'm reading the book of evil knowledge

mi lukin e lipu pi sona ike

the bugs built a library for books about bugs

pipi li pali e tomo pi lipu pipi

my friend who knows how to build houses is handing out documents about building

jan pona mi li pana e lipu pali · ona li sona pali e tomo


my friend is giving building documents · he knows how to build houses

the absence of my partner makes everything bad

weka pi ijo olin mi li ike e ale

people who are very far away are trying to eat my fish

ijo pi weka mute li lukin moku e kala mi


prev 󱥐 󱤪 index 󱤪 󱤖 next