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Thursday, September 20, 2018

Cebuano Grammar: Back to the Basics: Use of the intensifier 'kaayo'

Image result for very sweet

One day, I received a text from a former student.  This student has a passable ability in language learning.  His English is decent, meaning, he has mastered survival English and can also converse spontaneously about familiar subjects.  His grasp on some scientific, technical and social sciences issues are still on the shallow side.  it could be for lack of useful vocabulary, or lack of interest that he did not bother reading beyond what is interesting to him, suffice it to say, he has a passable Binisaya or Cebuano skill.  In other words, to achieve more mastery, he needs to practice the language more often and increase his vocabulary.

So (I digress again, as usual) I was not suprised when he texted me to inform me that mango in Guimaras is 'kaayo tam-is.'  Obviously, he has not veered away from how they say 'very sweet' in his  native language.  I can always tell how the first language is constructed with the way my learners directly translate from English to the target language.  

In Binisaya, to express, very sweet is tam-is kaayo.   The structure is:  

Adjective + kaayo + marker + subject

Here is an example:

Tam-is kaayo + ang + mangga

Can you find the equivalent of the phrases in column A in column B?

very handsome    lami kaayo  
very poor             lisod kaayo
very delicious      Ambungan kaayo
very hard             buotan kaayo
very kind             kabus kaayo

If you are sure of your answers:  leave them on the comments portion:  

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