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Grammar of the New Zealand Language

Chapter XI. — Of the Conjunctions

page 95

Chapter XI.
Of the Conjunctions.

Me, while; Me te hongi, me te tangi, and saluting, and crying; i.e., while saluting he is crying.

With; E mahi ana me te whakaaro ano ki te utu, he is working, and is at the same time mindful of payment.

  • Inoi atu me te ngakau aroha, pray with a loving heart.

  • Haere tahi me ia, went together with him.

As; Me koutou hoki i wakarere i to koutou kainga, as ye also left your country.

  • Meo & to mua, as formerly.

  • Me mua,* idem.

As far as; Me konei, me Waitemata, as far as from here to Waitemata.

If; Me he mea e pai ana, if he is willing. Me i kahore koe, if it had not been for you.

Ma, and, (a numeral conjunction.) vid. numerals, page 24.)

This particle will often supply a good substitute for with, when it denotes connexion, &c., a meaning which we believe to be but seldom expressed by ki. (vid. prepositions, page 55.)

* Some foreigners, we observe, use me i mua; this, however, is decidedly erroneous,

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  • Mei, (Waikato) inasmuch as, as you may judge from, (vid. hoki. Same as ina hoki of Ngapuhi.)

  • Koia, therefore; koia i riri ai, therefore was he angry.

Na and a. These particles are of very great use in Maori. They correspond very closely with particle vāhv of Hebrew, and may be recognised in our translations as occupying the place of and, then, therefore, but, &c. Those who have not access to Professor Gesenius' Hebrew Lexicon, will, we are sure, read with pleasure his remarks upon its parallel in Hebrew. “It was a part of the simplicity of ancient language to mark merely the connexion of ideas, without expressing those nice distinctions of thought, which are designated by the use of causal, adversative, disjunctive, and other conjunctions. The prefix vahv retains this variety of signification, though other more definite conjunctions are also in use.” This is precisely the case with Maori.

Ina, ua, (ana, Waikato) when; Ina korero ahau, when I speak.

If, (occasionally,) chiefly in cases in which contingency is attached to when:

  • Ma wai e whai, ina tere? who is to follow it, (the canoe) if it drifts?

Heoi (Ngapuhi), and heoti (Waikato), is a particle which corresponds sometimes with a, and na, in its uses. It generally, however, implies opposition, and might be translated by but, &c. Sometimes also, it has the meaning of so, then, and sometimes, (particularly in Waikato,) it is, in the end of sentences, redundant.

Ara, and then, &c; e.g.,

  • Ara te meatenga atu a Hone, and then John replied.

Note.—This particle is very often used as an adverb for videlicet, forsooth, &c.

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  • Mo, No, Na, reira.

  • Mo, No, Na, for that cause, therefore.*

  • Mona i tahae, because he stole.

  • Inake ano, Inake ano i kore ai e tupu, a good reason indeed why it did not grow (thence, from that cause.)

  • Ina whai ano (Waikato), idem.

  • Otira, Otiraia, Ia, Raia, Atiia, (Waikato) but, and nevertheless.

  • Huatu, Kaore, and kahore, Tena ko tenei, Tena, Ko, (sometimes) E ngari, E rangi, (sometimes) E ngaro, E ao ia, All these belong to the adversative class, and denote but with some peculiarity however of the meaning and construction which can only be learned by practice.

* The learned student will, however, notice that these words, as well as koia, are only preflxed to conclusions which are the natural and necessary effect of a preceding proposition. For example, we might use mo reira, &c., in such a sentence as the following: “Men are sinners, therefore men are exposed to the wrath of God:” because the preceding proposition is clearly a cause of the latter.

We could not, however, use any of them in such propositions as the following: “the Tohungas are liars, therefore the New Zealander listens to liars;” “the Sun shines, therefore the sun is a luminous body;” “man is an animal, therefore man has sensation;” because it would not be true to say, that, because the Tohunga is a liar, he is therefore listened to; because the sun shines it is luminous; or, because man is an animal be has sensation.

Wherever, then, the connection with the preceding proposition is either accidental or abstract, we must have recourse to other words, such as na, a, ra, pea, &c., and these are largely used in our translations (vid, Mat, 5, 37—24—42, and N. T. passim.)

The affirmative particles in a and ae ra will often supply a good substitute, and will perhaps be logically correct, For the conclusion is the proposition that we in principio affirm to be true, and having proved it, we then authoritatively pronounce it to be so. (vid, our remarks on as, &c., note, under adverbs of affirmation,)

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Ahakoa; although, ahakoa roa noa te tohe e kore e marere, although you importune long it will not be granted.

Note.—Ahakoa will almost always precede in the sentence, e.g., The following “though we were sinners he loved us,” should thus be rendered ahakoa hara noa tatou arohaina ana tatou e ia.

Following are a few examples of phrases which supply the place of conjunctions:

  • Ki te kahore e pai, if he is not pleased.

  • Ki te wa haere, if you go.

  • Ka pa nau, if it had been yours.

  • Ka pa tao (Ngapuhi) or tau (Waikato) na tatou, if it had been we that had done it.

  • Patu, ka aha? If I beat him, what better will he be? lit. beat him, what is (effected?)

  • I tika ano i a au, titiro ana koe wahia iho, I had put it all to rights, and you go and break it in pieces.

  • E korerotia atu ana, e whakatika mai ana, he is spoken to, he rises up, i.e., when I speak to him, he rises up against me.

  • Pera hoki me Hana e whakatoi nei, just as Hana teases.

  • Mana ka tika, mana ka he, even though, (no matter whether,) it be right or wrong.

  • Ko reira, then.

The particle ai is very useful in supplying the place of conjunctions. (Vid. our remarks on it.)