ma pi mi mute li pali e suwi mute.

English Translation

Our country produces a lot of sugar.

Toki Pona is a minimalist constructed language, designed by Sonja Lang with a small vocabulary. The sentence “ma pi mi mute li pali e suwi mute” can be broken down to give a clearer understanding to a learner of Toki Pona.

First, let’s translate the words individually:

  • ma: country, region, land
  • pi: of, belonging to (used to create compound nouns or to express relationships between nouns)
  • mi: I, me, we, us (the speaker - singular or plural depending on context)
  • mute: many, a lot, very
  • li: (separator between the subject and the verb, used after the subject to introduce the verb)
  • pali: do, make, work, build
  • e: (direct object marker, placed before the direct object of the verb)
  • suwi: sweet, candy, sugar

Now, let’s look at the structure of the sentence. In Toki Pona grammar:

  • Nouns are followed by “pi” if they relate to or belong to something, especially if the relationship involves multiple words. Here, “pi mi mute” means “belonging to us” or “of us” (our).
  • “li” comes after the subject to separate it from the verb. If the subject is “mi,” “sina,” or a proper noun like a person’s name, “li” is typically not used. But since “ma pi mi mute” is a compound noun phrase indicating “land of us,” “li” is used to separate the subject from the verb.
  • “e” indicates the direct object of a verb—the thing that the verb is acting upon.

The whole sentence is structured like this:

  • Subject: “ma pi mi mute” (our land or the land of us)
  • Verb: “pali” (to make or create)
  • Direct Object: “suwi mute” (a lot of sweets)

Putting it all together, “ma pi mi mute li pali e suwi mute” translates to “our land makes a lot of sweets” or “the land of us makes many sweets.” The sentence indicates that the territory associated with the speaker and their group produces a large quantity of sugary treats or sweet