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Ekiku Umasika Umofa
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voice is marked on nouns!
This public article was written by dendana, and last updated on 1 Oct 2018, 03:01.

5. Umofa
Menu 1. Unmarked voice 2. Causative 3. Passive 4. Causative passive 5. Passive causative 6. Reflexive 7. Reciprocal 8. Ditransitives 9. Meny-VC-a construction In Umofa, voice is generally marked not on verbs, but on noun phrases, using a set of special particles which don’t agree with the noun phrase vowel like normal modifiers.

There is also a clitic -ye which takes the place of an omitted noun phrase.

[top]Unmarked voice

Umofa is always SVO:
axofa Umofa 'I speak Umofa'

Patientless: use -ye on verb, this detransitivizes a verb as a process
axofa-ye 'I speak (something)', compare axofa 'I speak (no patient)'


Meni (prenominal) causative: marks the caused entity as pre-object
axofa meni ama Umofa 'I made you speak Umofa'

axofa-ye meni ama 'I made you speak (something'

axofa meni-ye Umofa 'I made someone speak Umofa'


Epa (prenominal) passive: marks the former agent, while former patient is promoted to subject.
arunyagira epa anya 'It was learned by us'
Agentless passive: use -ye on epa
arunyagira epa-ye 'It was learned'

[top]Causative passive

You mark the causee with meni as subject, and the causer with epa as object. True patient is last, unmarked.
meni (anya) anyunyagira epa ada Umofa 'we were made to learn Umofa by them'

meni anya anyunyagira-ye epa ada 'we were made to learn something by them'

meni anya anyunyagira epa-ye Umofa 'we were made to learn Umofa by somebody'

[top]Passive causative

The verb agrees with subject which is true patient, meni marks causee, and epa marks causer.
Umofa arofa meni ama epa axa
'I made Umofa get spoken by you'

Umofa arofa meni ama epa-ye
'Someone made Umofa get spoken by you'

Umofa arofa meni-ye epa axa
'I made Umofa get spoken'

Besides this system, there are also special mechanisms for forming reflexives and reciprocals, which agree with the subject of the verb.


Use ex- attached to possessive pronoun ending in -e. Can only apply after the antecedent is mentioned.
araya exire 'She wanted herself'
Umofa arofa meni axa epa exixe 'I made Umofa get spoken by myself'


Use us- attached to possessive pronoun ending in -u (only plural pronouns) Can only apply after the antecedent is mentioned.
adaya usidu 'They wanted each other'
amaya usimu 'You all wanted each other'
Umofa arofa meni anya epa usinyu 'We made Umofa get spoken by each other'


'give' taga is actually a monotransitive verb, and its object is the recipient. The gift is the object of tabara 'grab, take' which is used in the infinitive.

axaga ama tabara uganya 'I gave you a flower'
Taga can be used without tabara.
amageda axa 'give me (it)'

There is one final construction which is used mainly in written Umofa.

[top]Meny-VC-a construction

meni gets suffixes meny-VC...a for complement verbs:
axofa menyaya ama Umofa 'I wanted you to speak Umofa'
This is never used for cases where the subject of the matrix and complement clause are the same.
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