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This is the fourth (text) lesson in the series dealing with Twi pronouns. So far, we have looked at Twi pronouns in general, personal pronouns and subject pronouns. The present lesson explores the second type of personal pronouns in Twi: the object pronouns.
In Lesson 6: Personal Pronouns in Twi, we noted that a Twi personal pronoun may take on different forms to show:
- Number: whether the personal pronoun refers to a singular entity or plural.
- Person: whether the personal pronoun is referring to the one who is speaking, the one being spoken to, or a third party.
- Case: whether the personal pronoun is acting as the subject or object in a sentence.
We have since identified the forms that the Twi personal pronouns take when they act as subjects of sentences. We did that in Lesson 7: Subject Pronouns in Twi.
Let’s now see the forms that the Twi pronouns take when they act as objects.
What is an object pronoun?
The name is self-explanatory, isn’t it? An object pronoun is a personal pronoun that is typically used as a grammatical object, i.e. the direct or indirect object of a verb.
One of the functions of a Twi noun as identified in Lesson 20: Functions of Twi Nouns is its ability to act as the object of a verb in a sentence, be it the direct or indirect object. Since the primary role of a pronoun in general is to replace nouns and noun phrases, when a personal pronoun takes the place of a noun as the object of a sentence, we call such a personal pronoun an object pronoun.
List of object pronouns in Twi
The table below shows the forms that the personal pronouns take when they act as objects in a sentence.
|me||me (1st person singular)|
|wo||you (2nd person singular)|
|ɔno = no||him/her (3rd person singular)|
|ɛno = no||it (3rd person neutral)|
|yɛn||us (1st person plural)|
|mo||you (2nd person plural)|
|wɔn||them (3rd person plural)|
Let’s try using the Twi object pronouns identified above in some simple sentences below. The object pronouns are underlined.
1. Maame boo me.
Mum beat me.
2. Mafe wo.
I have missed you.
3. Kofi dɔ no.
Kofi loves him/her.
4. Okuani no abu no.
The farmer has broken it.
5. Paapa somaa yɛn.
Dad sent us.
6. Ama asisi mo.
Ama has cheated you (plural).
7. Kwadwo adaadaa wɔn.
Kwadwo has deceived them.
Again, it is very important that you take note of the following regarding Twi object pronouns.
1. With the exception of ɔno (he/she) and ɛno (it), the forms of all the Twi personal pronouns remain unchanged when they are used as objects. If you compare the list of Twi object pronouns above with the Twi personal pronouns from lesson 6, you will notice only ɔno (he/she) and ɛno (it) change in form. The prefixes of both ɔno and ɛno (ɔ and ɛ) are dropped when they are used as objects. So, both become no.
In fact, let’s do the comparison with the table below.
|Personal Pronouns||Object Pronouns|
2. A Twi object pronoun may act as the direct or indirect object of a verb in a sentence. In the set of usage examples above (1 – 7), all the object pronouns identified are acting as the direct objects of the verbs of their respective sentences. Let’s look at a few cases where they act as indirect objects. Before we do, though, let’s briefly distinguish between direct and indirect objects.
The direct object is the entity that is directly affected by the action of the main verb. So, from usage example 1, if we ask
- hwan na maame boo no? (whom did mum beat?), the answer is the entity that receives the action of beating and, thus, the direct object.
An indirect object is the entity that receives the direct object. So, in memaa no sika (I gave him/her money), if we ask
- hwan na memaa no sika? (to whom did I give money?), the answer is the entity that receives the direct object sika (money). no (him/her) is, therefore, the indirect object.
Let’s now look at examples of indirect object pronouns in Twi. They are underlined below.
1. Amakye maa me akonnwa.
Amakye gave me a chair.
2. Wo papa gyaa wo sika.
Your father left you money.
3. Metwaa no twɛdeɛ.
I gave him/her a knock.
4. Akosua twerɛɛ yɛn krataa.
Akosua wrote us a letter.
5. Mede nwoma no akyɛ mo.
I have gifted you (plural) the book.
6. Anɔkye wuo no gyaa wɔn awerɛhoɔ.
Anokye’s death left them sadness.
3. Unlike Twi subject pronouns, we do not combine the object pronouns with verbs when writing, irrespective of the position of the verb in relation to the object pronoun.
This brings us to the end of today’s lesson. You may support our project by purchasing our e-book here. We will also appreciate it if you subscribe to our YouTube channel and like our Facebook page. Thank you for reading.
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