lipu lili pi toki pona
tl;dr This grammar description and dictionary shows how I use this language and what are my principles. It was not meant to be a lesson of any kind, but I can see the potential in it as a "brief" summary about the language, or like a cheat sheet. I would recommend checking out the table of contents first.
This doc is basically a brief-ish, but almost complete description of the toki pona grammar (that happened to come along with a dictionary as well) that is based on how I use the language. This doc is intended to those who has a basic understanding on the language, or interested in how others interpret it.
Most people will use toki pona according to pu or jan Pije's o kama sona e toki pona!. These are great sources and I wish not to compete with them... except that I kind of do. Many people learn from different sources that describes toki pona slightly differently and, for the sake of simplicity, I will call these variations dialects. Those differences are often minute and arguably identical to pu (depending on how one interprets pu), which was my goal as well when I first wrote this nasin.
Why was it called nasin pi jan Sotan? Because I want to make it clear that it is, in fact, describes toki pona as a language in a way that in practice most people will not have any problem with it, but there are fundamental differences between some of the structures and the "logic behind the language" that may make it different. Just a quick example, the particles e and li were (and sometimes still are) a matter of debate whether they are independent words, separators between or parts of the noun/verb/subject/object, etc. I have my own view on them, others have different ones and, in the end, maybe every one of us is right, since pu did not gave us a definite answer -- it only says that they are particles and this and that are what they do. Let us not mention the issues with pi -- with little to no stretch, we (many toki pona enthusiasts and I) could write pages on this subject alone; it's different uses, alternative interpretations, other's views on it, what rules do or should apply to it, etc. Also, I needed a name that uniquely identifies this document.
But as time have passed and plans have changed, this doc ultimately was renamed to lipu lili pi toki pona. It technically still described "my nasin", but I felt like this name would suit it better, especially since I plan to [censored].
Lastly, I would like to point out that unlike many "proper" grammar descriptions, many sentences begin with "I" instead of using passive. This is because originally this document was only to present "how I use the language", rather than "this is how the language should be used". While technically this is still true (as of 05/05/2019), in the future I would expand this doc and change ("properize") its language.
PS: As a disgusting attempt to get people to read my writings, one of my original reasons to write the predecessor of this doc was to make clear what and how I meant things. I applied either these same rules or its (mostly unwritten) predecessors since around 2015 in things that you can read at dschorsaanjo.hu/toki-pona.
Table of Contents
The order shows how this is supposed to be read.
- Definitions -- describes my use of terms and different-than-usual word uses (e.g. "usually" means "by pu" and what sins are)
- Grammar -- describes the toki pona grammar (may not be beginner friendly)
- Dictionary -- a complete toki pona dictionary, including words that are not official anymore
- tok' apona -- a rather crazy toki pona dialect for informal uses (DO NOT use toki pona like this in general toki pona groups!)
If you find any error in the text (either grammatical or contextual), please send a pull request, fork the project, or write an email to me at email@example.com!
This work by B. Zoltán Gorza is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 License. To view a copy of the license, visit this site.
Here shall be my TODO list, for I have these items on a paper for more than a week now and I definitely will add these, but not yet (for reasons).
- Add more and more complex sentence examples
- Reconsider options to either remove, move or restructure the frighteningly long text in README (especially the anectodal parts)
- Remove Herobrine