LESSON 5: The Pronouns I (Nominative Form)

Bismillah. This is the 4th lesson on “Tausug 101: Learning Bahasa Sug” by Anak Iluh. For lists of lessons, please go to: Lists of Lessons.

                Thursday is Bahasa Sug day! Hehe. Alhamdulillah, we are already done with the first part of our course, from the brief history and background about Bahasa Sug to its different sounds and letters and the special rulings therein. We are now about to begin the second part; the second level which will be a little harder to put in to words…but hopefully we will be able to learn them easily. We will start by introducing the Common Pronouns in Bahasa Sug (thanks to Mr.Boutemr and Dayang ni D of for this suggestion).
             There are basically three forms of pronouns found in Bahasa Sug: 1) the Nominative form (which is the most common, I think); 2) the Genitive Form; and the 3) Oblique form. Don’t panic! We will try to discuss them one at a time. (I am also trying to learn them as much as I can.) The 2nd and 3rd form will be discussed in next lessons to come, in sha Allah. Today, we will focus on the first form: the Nominative Form.
            So what do we mean when we say “Nominative”? According to Merriam-Webster, in the grammar of languages, ‘nominative’ refers to the ‘marking typically of the subject of the verb’. In this definition, we can basically say that these kinds of pronouns are only used as subjects (I am still on the process of doing some experiments, hopefully to find some exemptions in this rule). The basic idea is there: when using the pronoun as the subject of the verb, we use the following Tausug pronouns:
1st Person (speaker) Singular
Plural (including the listener)
Kita niyu or
Plural (excluding the listener)
2nd Person (to listener) Singular
3rd Person (absent) Singular

                It can be observed that these pronouns are indeed similar with the Tagalog Pronouns, except in some of it such as Kitaniyu (“Tayo” in Tagalog) and Kamu (“Kayo” in Tagalog). Learning these pronouns will surely be a ‘no-sweat’ thing for Filipino learners and those who are already fluent in Tagalog.

                To get a better picture of how these pronouns are used, here is a short Tausug Conversation (this is an example of a quite informal conversation between two peers):

Pagsambung-Laung III

Maryam:          Indah, hisiyu kaw yan?                                 Indah, who are you?
Yusra:              Aku hi Yusra.                                              I am Yusra
Maryam:          Ikaw ka in anak hi abu’ hadji Del?              Are you a daughter of Aunt Hja. Del?
Yusra:              Huun, aku in magulang.                               Yes, I am the eldest.
Maryam:          Pila kamu magtaymanghud?                        How many are you (siblings)?
Yusra:              Tuw. Babai kami katan.                              Three. We are all girls.
Maryam:          Hain na in mga manghud mu?                      Where are your sisters?
Yusra:              Yadtu sila ha iskul.                                      They are at school.
Maryam:          Hi Fairodz, grade pila na?                           What grade is Fairodz now?
Yusra:              Grade six na siya.                                       She is now in Grade six.
Maryam:          Marayaw isab nakapagkila kita.              It is good that we met each other.
Yusra:       Huun sa. Biya’ naglayu’ na kitaniyu           Your right. We have been far from
                        katan yan.                                                   each other (for a while).

                Due to some technical problems (which includes the inability of the author to record the audio in a female voice), the audio file for this conversation will be released next week. Thank you very much for your kind considerations. 🙂

                Here are the new Tausug words we learned today in this lesson:

Hisiyu     =    Who                            Manghud   =   Younger sibling                
Pila         =    How many                   Yadtu        =     There
Anak      =    child (son/daughter)       Nakapagkila (r.w. Kila) = to Know or to Meet
Abu’/Babu’  =    Aunt                       Katan     =    All
Magulang     =    Elder child            Naglayu’ (r.w. Layu’)= Become far  

Salam Kasilasa!
Anak Iluh


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