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Page history last edited by Franz Sledge 13 years, 4 months ago


Descriptive adjectives usually follow the noun:


un homber famoso

a famous man


un kas grandi

a big house


Possessives and quantifiers appear before the noun:


mi kas

my house


hopi buki

many books



Dual Position Adjectives


A few adjectives may appear either before or after the noun. Three of these adjectives have the same meaning regardless of whether they appear before or after the noun: dushi = sweet, bunita = beautiful, bon = good. Others change their meanings depending on their position:


homber grandi

big man


grandi homber

great man


homber pober

poor (impoverished) man


pober homber

poor (pitiful) man


homber malu

sick man or bad man


mal homber

bad man (malu becomes mal when placed before the noun)





The comparative is formed with mas. The normal superlative is formed with di mas.


mas fuerte



di mas fuerte



mas grandi



di mas grandi



Mi ta mas grandi ku bo.

I am bigger than you.


E apel aki ta mas dushi ku e apel ei.

This apple is sweeter than that apple.


Carlos ta e homber di mas fuerte ku mi konose.

Carlos is the strongest man I know.



Irregular Comparisons


Like English, Papiamentu has just a few adjectives with irregular comparative and superlative forms.


bon, mihó, e mihó 

good, better, best

(in addition to mihó, the variants mehor and mihor also exist)


malu, pió, di mas pió or di mas malu

bad, worse, worst

(in addition to pió, the variant peor also exists)


poko, menos, di mas menos

little (not much of), less, the least


Mi tin poko plaka, ma é tin menos.

I have little money but he has less.






Blankenburg, Eleanor Basic Papiamentu Grammar for English Speakers 1986

Goilo, E.R. Papaimentu Textbook, ninth edition 1994

Ratzlaff, Betty English-Papiamentu Bilingual Dictionary, first edition 1992



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