ELISION AND COALITION OF ZULU VOWELS

57. (The vowels a, e, i, are often elided at the end of a word, when the next word is closely connected with it, and begins with a vowel.

Ex.          leth’ihashi, bring the horse, for letha; amanz’ami, my amanzi (literally water, but used for utshwala); amas’abo, their amasi.

So, too, a weak final o may be elided.

Ex. laph’ehlezi khona, where he sits, for lapho.

Sometimes, on the other hand, a weak initial vowel may be elided after a stronger final one.

Ex.          abendlu’nkulu, those of the (great) royal house, for enkulu.

So the vowel of a personal pronoun is dropped before a vowel-verb, that is, before a verb beginning with a vowel.

Ex.          b’eza abantu, the people came, for ba eza.

‘eza amahashi, the horses came, for a eza.

kaz’ote, let him come that he may get dry, for kaze ‘ote=kaze aote.

yeka lo’mntwana ‘onakala (for eonakala)! oh that child spoiling itself !

But the u of u, lu, bu, ku, is changed to w, and the vowel- pronoun i to y.

Ex.          ngibona intombi yehla (i ehla) entabeni, I see a girl descending from the hill.

uma kwabanolaka (ku abanolaka), if there (are) who (are) in a rage.

uma kwegijimayo (ku egijimayo) leyo’nja, if it (be one) that runs, that dog.

kweziningi (ku eziningi) , it being many= there being many.

kwizinsizwa (ku izinsizwa) zombili, there being both the young men.

indaba kweyakini, (ku eyakini) a matter it (being that) of your people.

Or the u or w is often dropped altogether in such cases.

Ex.          ng’ubona (ngiubona=ngiwubona) umuzi en’ufunayo (eniwufunayo), I see it, the kraal which ye seek.

And in rapid or careless speech the u or w is dropped in other instances.

Ex.          alaza I’ezwa, (it did not come, it heard=) it did not get to hear, for alwaza Iw ‘ezwa.

58. When a demonstrative pronoun precedes its noun, its final vowel causes the initial vowel of the noun to be dropped.

Ex.          laba’bantu, these people, for laba abantu.

le’ngubo, this coat, for, le ingubo.

Except a before o.

Ex.          laba onina, these mothers; but labo’nina, those mothers.

59. When the preposition ku, to or from, precedes a noun singular of Class I, the u in ku expels the initial vowel of the noun’s inflex, if it be a or u, but is itself changed to w before i, and dropped before o.

Ex. ku’bantu (ku abantu), to or from the people.

ku’Mpande (ku uMpande), to or from Umpande.

60. When any one of the Possessive Particles, wa, la, ya, &c. (73), or the words na, nga, kwa, njenga, precedes a noun, its final a coalesces with the initial vowel of the noun’s inflex, viz. a and a coalesce into a, a and i into e, a and o, or a and u into o.

Ex.          inKosikazi yamaNgisi (ya amaNgisi), Queen of the English.

                Njengoyise (njenga oyise) babo, like their fathers.

amansi nemithi notshani (na imithi na utshani), water, and trees,and grass.

Except such cases as the following, where the contraction does not take place.

Ex.          sambamba kanye naoPutaneka, wo caught him together with Putaneka and his people.

izingane zonke zami kanye naonina, all my little ones together with their mothers.

Bafa ukulwa nezizwe na ukufa kwalawo’mazwe, they died through fighting with the tribes and through the sickness of those lands.

61. In all other cases, if two vowels come together, they

must be sounded separately.

Ex.          ugwai, snuff; inkawu, a monkey; ubuula, folly.

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