Present Tense

So in the last chapter, we explored ways to express possession with demonstratives and pronouns. Now that we know how to express I, he, you, ours, theirs, mine, theirs etc we can begin conjugating some verbs.

For easier understanding the nature of verbs in Creole, we’ll group them into verb classes according to their endings.

In this chapter, we’ll explore verbs conjugated in the most useful tenses possible: the Present and Present Progressive.

Present Tenses

The present tense, is a grammatical tense grouping the Present Simple and the Present Progressive. As its name implies, this group of present tenses refer to any action, state of being, habitual action, an occurrence in the near future OR an action that occurs in the past but continues up to the present.

Examples in English (Present simple):

A. I like to cook.
B. I eat broccoli.
C. I sleep late.
D. I wish upon a star.
E. I dice my vegetables first.
F. I study at the university.

Examples in English (Present Progressive):

A. I am eating cereal.
B. I am thinking about going out.
C. She is arguing.
D. We are going to dinner.
E. They are sitting in the park.
F. You‘re being selfish.

Verbs are consistently conjugated in the same manner, with same endings in Creole. So that means it’s less mental work. Conjugating Creole verbs is easier than conjugating English verbs. See below.

-é Verbs
For these verbs, the rule is simple: remove the é at the end and you have the present tense conjugations.

  • Manjé (to eat):Mo manj (I eat)
    To manj (you eat, singular)
    Li manj (he, she or it eats)
    No/nou/nou-zòt manj (we eat)
    Vou-zòt (yall eat)
    Yé manj (they eat)

-i Verbs
Same as the -é verbs, to form the present tense, except here you’ll remove the last two letters at the end.

  • Parti (to leave)Mo par
    To par
    Li par
    No/nou/nou-zòt par
    Vou-zòt par
    Yé par

Present Progressive in Creole

-é verbs

  • Manjé
    M’ap(é) manjé (I am eating)
    T’ap(é) manjé (You’re eating)
    L’ap(é) manjé (He, she or it is eating)
    N’ap(é) manjé (We’re eating)
    Vou-zòt ap(é) manjé (Yall are eating)
    Y’ap(é) manjé (They’re eating)

-i verbs

  • Parti
    M’ap(é) parti
    T’ap(é) parti
    L’ap(é) parti
    N’ap(é) parti
    Vou-zòt ap(é) parti
    Y’ap(é) parti

4 thoughts on “Present Tense

  1. Yahwey has given me this site!! Thank you. All my life i been wanting to learn my original lang. My elderly family speaks it well but did not teach me.

    • Monet, your legacy is bigger than being a Creole…The people with the last name Senegal, are named so because they were some of the earliest Africans in the colony of Louisiana, and at that time were called by their region of origin, so some took the slave identification and made it their last name. So I don’t know what else you are mixed with but you are one of the rare people who can trace your African origin to a specific country.

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