A Concise Grammar of the Malagasy Language/Pronouns

PRONOUNS.

The Personal Pronouns.

Of Personal Pronouns there are two forms, separate and inseparable (or suffixed), as shown in the following table:

Singular Number.

Separate forms. Inseparable forms.
person. nom. case. acc. and possess. cases. full form. contr. form.
First
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
izàho àhy. -ko -o.
aho
Second
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
hìanào anào. -nào -ào.
Third
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
ìzy àzy. -ny -n', -y.

Plural Number.

First, inclus.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
isìka antsìka. -ntsìka -tsìka.
First, exclus.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
ìzahày anày. -này -ày.
Second
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
hìanarèo ànarèo. -narèo -arèo.
Third
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
ìzy àzy. -ny -n', -y.

Izàho is more emphatic than àho, and is generally used when the predicate follows, while àho usually follows its predicate. There are some exceptions to this rule, especially the verb hòy ('say, says, said'), which usually takes izàho 'say I.'

Isìka includes both the speaker and the person spoken to, while ìzahày excludes the person addressed; or, isìka, 'we,' (and you), ìzahày, 'we,' (but not you).

The separate forms for the possessive case are used in two ways:—

(1) as predicates; as, àhy nỳ vòla, 'the money is mine'.

(2) for any case, with the article prefixed (the noun being understood); as, ènto nỳ anào, 'being thine' (lit. the of thee).

The inseparable or suffixed forms may denote—

(1) A possessive case; as, nỳ vòlako, 'my money'.

(2) An ablative case, showing the agent of a passive or a relative verb; as, vòasàsako, 'washed by me'. They are less often used with adjectives in this instrumental sense; as, fìry nỳ òlona izày èfa hèndrinào? 'How many are the people who have become wise through you'?

(3) An indirect objective case, after verbs, adjectives, prepositions, &c. In these cases the suffixed pronoun is attached to the preposition àmy; as, misèho àmiko, 'to appear to me'.

(4) Rarely a dative case; as, màminày, 'sweet to us'.

As there is no reflexive pronoun in Malagasy, tèna (body) is used for self; as, namòno tèna ìzy, 'he killed himself'.

The Rule for attaching the suffix pronouns to any word is as follows:—(1) For words not ending in -na, -ka, or -tra; attach the full form of the suffixed pronoun, without contraction. (2) For words ending in -na, -ka, or -tra; if the accent is on the antepenult, take one or other of the contracted forms of the suffixed pronouns, and either throw away or shorten their last syllable. If the accent is on the penult, either the full or the contracted forms may be used; as, tràtro and tràtrako, 'my chest';—except in the case of passive and relative verbs and relative nouns in -ana, when only the contracted forms of these pronouns may be used; as, sasàna, 'washed', sasàko, 'washed by me'.


Examples of the modes of attachment of suffixed Pronouns.

1. To words not ending in -na, -ka, or -tra.

noun. verb. preposition.
Vòla, money. Àzo, got. Àmy, to, at, &c.
Sing. vòlako, my money. àzoko, got by me. àmiko, to me.
vòlanào, thy money. àzonào, got by thee. àminào, to thee.
vòlany, his (or her) money. àzony, got by him, (her, or it). àminy, to him (her, or it).
Plur. vòlanày, our money. àzonày, got by us. àminày, to us.
vòlantsìka, our money. àzontsìka, got by us. àmintsìka, to us.
vòlanarèo, your money. àzonarèo, got by you. àminarèo, to you.
vòlany, their money. àzony, got by them. àminy, to them.
2. To words ending in -na, -ka, or -tra. (N.B.—Only nouns are here given as examples, but verbs are treated in exactly the same way.)
Hàrona, a basket. Sàtroka, a hat or, hats. Hèvitra, a thought.
Sing. hàroko, my basket. sàtroko, my hat. hèvitro, my thought.
hàronào, thy basket. sàtrokào, thy hat. hèvitrào, thy thought.
hàrony, his (or her) basket. sàtrony, his (or her) hat. hèviny, his (or her) thought.
Plur. hàronày, our basket. sàtrokày, our hats. hèvitrày, our thought.
hàrontsìka, our basket. sàtrotsìka, our hats. hèvitsìka, our thought.
hàronarèo, your basket. sàtrokarèo, your hats. hèvitrarèo, your thought.
hàrony, their basket. sàtrony, their hats. hèviny, their thought.

Demonstrative Pronouns.

These are very numerous, the choice of one rather than another being regulated by the distance, real or imaginary, of the object pointed out. By the insertion of re, they become plural; while by inserting za another class of these pronouns is formed, expressing the unseen, remembered, or conceived, as opposed to what is seen and actually pointed out.

Comparative Table of the chief Demonstrative Pronouns and analogous Adverbs of Place.

demonstrative pronouns.

(Object seen.) (Object unseen.)
Singular. Plural. Singular or Plural.
Itỳ, this. irèty, these. izàty.
Itò (obsolete), this. irèto, these. izàto.
Ìo, that. irèo, those. izào.
Ìtsy, that. irètsy, those. izàtsy.
Ìny, that. irèny, those. izàny.
Iròa, that. irèròa, those. ìzaròa.
Irỳ, that. irèry, those. ìzarỳ.

adverbs of place.

(Object seen.) (Object unseen.)
Etỳ, here. àty, here.
Èto, here. àto, here.
Èo, there. ào, there.
Etsỳ, there. atsỳ, there.
Èny, there. àny, there.
Eròa, there. aròa, there.
Erỳ, there. arỳ, there.

All demonstrative pronouns are used both before and after the word or phrase they qualify; as, ìo hàzo ìo, 'that tree'. This use of them is very convenient, especially with a long phrase, as all the connected words are thereby bound together.


Interrogative Pronouns.

These, which are few in number, are as follows:—

ìza, zòvy 'who,' 'which'? ìnona, 'what'? àn'ìza, an-jòvy, 'whose'? àn'ìnona (used of places only), 'where', 'what'?

The indefinite interrogatives are made by doubling these, and inserting between; as, nà ìza nà ìza, 'whosoever'.


The Relative Pronoun.

There is only one relative pronoun, izày, which cannot be declined, and is used for any case of either number.