How to use (What) in Somali language

Using (What) in Somali

Somali: How to use (What) in Somali language?

How to use “What” in Somali language? Using  “What”  can mean either “Maxaa” when asking question or “Waxaa” when specifying something. So using maxaa/waxaa changes with different pronouns. There are special cases when (ee) is added to the end of the  noun.

We will begin with the question form (what + noun?) For example someone tells or asks you something they think you know. Like, give me the key? (Furaha I sii?). You don’t’ know what key they are talking about so your reply with (What key?/ Furehee). This is how you use that in Somali language

What + Noun: Example: What kid/

English Somali Noun With article(The)
What key? Furehee? Fure The key/ Furaha
What name? Magacee? Macag The name/ Magaca
What school? Iskoolkee? Iskool The school/ Iskoolka
What Hospital? Isbataalkee? Isbataal The hospital/ Isbataalka
What news? Warkee? War The news/ Warka
What time? Wakhtigee? Wakhti The time/ Wakhtiga
What man? Ninkee? Nin The man/ Ninka
What kind? Noocee? Nooc The kind/ Nooca
What store? Dukaankee? Dukaan The store/ Dukaanka
What money? Lacagtee? Lacag The money/ Lacagta
What car? Gaarigee? Gaari The car/ Gaariga
What house Gurigee? Guri The house/ Guriga



In the table below we will use what as asking for specific things

What/Maxaa I You He She We They Pronoun
Contraction Maxaan Maxaad Muxuu Maxay Maxaan Maxay Most used
What do I do?Maxaan Sameeyaa? What did I do?Maxaan Sameeyay What am doing?Maxaan Samaynayaa
What happened?Maxaa dhacay? What is that?Maxaa weeye kaas? What caused it?Maxaa sababay?
What do you want?Maxaad Rabtaa? What did you say?Maxaad tiri? What are you buying?Maxaad gadanaysaa?
What does she want?Maxay Rabtaa? What did she want?Maxay rabtay? What was she wearing?Maxay xirnayd?
What is he?Muxuu yahay? What did he order?Muxuu dalbaday What is he watching?Muxuu daawanayaa?
What will they find?Maxay heli doonaan? What are they eating?Maxay cunayaan What did they read?Maxay akhriyeen?
What do we do?Maxaa samaynaa? What do we give?Maxaa siinnaa? What do we know?Maxaan ognahay?

Instead of Maxaan, Maxaad, Muxuu, Maxay, sometimes these formal ones are used.

Pronoun I You He She We They
Formal Maxaa aan Maxaa aad Maxaa uu Maxaa ay Maxaa aan Maxaa ay




Using what in non-question form.

What/Waxa I You He She We They Pronoun
  Waxaan Waxaad Wuxuu Waxay Waxaan Waxay  
What I said was right.Waxaan iri way saxsanaayeen. I don’t want to discuss what I do for living.Waxaan ka shaqeeyo in aan ka hadlo ma rabo I don’t’ know what to do.Waxaan sameeyo ma aqaan.Waxaan sameeyo ma aqaan
That is what she believe.Waa waxay aaminsantay I don’t know what she is afraid of.Ma aqaan waxay ka baqayso We gave her what she wanted.Waxay rabtay waa siinnay.
He gets what he wants.Wuxuu rabo wuu helaa. He said what he said.Wuxuu yiri buu yiri. What he did was wrong.Wuxuu sameeyay way qaldanayeen.
No one know what they want.Waxay rabaan cid og maleh. Did they tell you what they want?Waxay rabaan makuu shegeen? They don’t know what is coming.Waxa imaanaya ma oga ayagu.
What we don’t’ understand is how they got the information.Waxaan fahmi la’nahay sida ay ku heleen warka. We did what we thought was right.Waxaan samaynay wixi nala saxsanaa We cannot tell you what to do.Waxaad samaynaysid kuuma sheegi karno.
Tell me what you want.Waxaad rabtid ii sheeg That is not I what I want you to say.Ma’ ahan waxaan rabo in aad dhahdid What you want and what I want are the same.Waxaan rabo iyo waxaad rabtid waa isku mid.




Some more examples

English Somali: Mostly used Somali: Sometimes used
What is your name?  (Magacaa)? Maxaa weeye Magacaaga
What is her age? Da’deed?? Maxaa weeye da’ deeda
What kind Noocee? Waa maxay nooca
What is our name? Mageceen? Waa maxay mageceenna
What! Maxaa!?
What a beauty Maxaa ku qurux ah? Qurux badanaa


 If you see any errors or typos please contact us Thanks

Also check our forum if you have any questions.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *