Grammar and Vocabulary of the Lau Language eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 84 pages of information about Grammar and Vocabulary of the Lau Language.


These are na, ne, this; nena, nana, nane, that.

1.  These all follow a noun or a pronoun:  a mwela ne this person, nia nana that is it.

2. Na is added after the negative langilangi na no, not that; and after sui finished:  sui na that is finished.

3. Go an adverb, there, is used as a demonstrative:  tefe doo go ana only one thing, inau go agu I for my part; ne may be added, gone that, inia gone that is so. Ba means that, there:  diena ba good! bago is used following a noun or a pronoun:  a doo bago that person there.


1.  The words used are ati, who; taa, tafa, what.  The personal article a makes ati who, singular, gerati plural.  Both ti and taa are nouns.  The adverb ba may be added to ati for the purpose of emphasis:  ati ba who? Ti stands for the name of the person and ati means, what is the name? ati mwane what man?  The demonstrative ne may be added for emphasis:  ati ne who is it then? Ati has also an indefinite use:  ati susulia who knows?

2.  With taa, tafa, the definite article si may be used:  si taa what, that which, taa may follow the noun, ta si doo taa what sort of thing? si doo taa ne what?  The adverb fai (where) may be used as an interrogative pronoun:  nifai which, what?


The uses of ta, te_, have been dealt with under “articles.”  These two words are used as signifying, any, some, other.

The noun sai place, thing, has an indefinite use:  sai ai that which, what, sai na that which, ta sai ai, one, another (of things), sai oe your place, your duty, tani oto ni sai ai some people. (The Rev. A. I. Hopkins states in a note that sai in Lau is used of food only).


There are no relative pronouns.  Their place is supplied by various locutions.

1.  By the suffixed pronoun:  inia nane gu bae kekerofana fasi uri this is he of whom I spoke.  The addition of the demonstrative ne, nena, serves to make the meaning clearer:  inia nena ai garni mi maasia he is the person for whom we are waiting.

2.  By making use of a coordinate clause:  igami ne too gera ada fuada na we are the people whom they have chosen.


Singular:  (1) agu. (2) amu. (3) ana.

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Grammar and Vocabulary of the Lau Language from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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