Quick links:

Palauan Adjectives

The following is a brief discussion about Palauan adjectives. For a longer exploration, please refer to discussions of state verbs in the Joseph Handbooks. According to the official Lewis Joseph grammar book of Palauan, there are no Palauan parts of speech called adjectives. However, Palauan does, of course, have words used to describe other words. In English, we call these words adjectives. Examples of English adjectives are dangerous, beautiful, and hot.

Palauan Resulting State Verbs

In Palauan, words corresponding to English adjectives are called state verbs. There are several types of Palauan state verbs. The most common are resulting state verbs which occur as a result of a verb. Some examples:

Here is a list of seven random Palauan verbs and their resulting state verbs:

delebes, v.r.s.cut; snipped.
delebes a mla medebes; teluk; delebokl, teluk a ochil, dobesii, duebes, debesel.
See also:
ulat, v.r.s.put over fire; put; placed; pounded into ground.
ulat a loiang; olekang a ulat er a ingukl; ulat a btil a ungil el dengchokl; otil a olekang.
See also:
uldasu, v.r.s.thought about; taken into consideration.
uldasu a omdasu, omelebedebek; urrereel a rael a ngar a uldasu; udesuel a beches el skuul.
See also:
ulet, v.r.s.pressed; squeezed; (food) soft (from hitting ground).
ulet a mla mouet; lius a ulet, tul a kerebou a ulet, omet, met, meseos, omeseos.
See also:
ulkiis, v.r.s.awakened.
See also:
ultour, v.r.s.carried on the back; held behind the back.
ultour a ngar a ulk; mla motour; mla oturii a ngelekel; cheleoch el ngalek a ultour, oltour er a til; oturel.
See also:


Palauan Anticipating State Verbs

Anticipating state verbs in Palauan are like resulting state verbs. However, instead of describing the state of something after a verb has modified it, these describe the state of something before a verb is anticipated to modify it. Here's seven random Anticipating State Verbs:

besachel, v.a.s.is to be counted/named/mentioned.
See also:
delaol, v.a.s.is to be broiled or roasted.
delaol a kirel el medul; durur a mesekuuk, dmul a meas, ngikel a delaol.
See also:
kedebengall, v.a.s.is to be shortened.
kedebengall a kirel el mo kedeb; bilek a kedebengall, kodebengii a bail, mengedeb er ngii; kedebengel.
See also:
otechebekill, v.a.s.is to be pushed into water.
otebechekill a kirel el motechebekl, melechebekl, otebecheklii a lechet, otebecheklel.
See also:
tekiungel, v.a.s.needs to be talked to; (person) is being talked about (because of bad behavior, etc.).
tekiungel a kirel el mo er ngii a tekoi; soadel er a beluu, tekiungel er a beluu er a omengubs.el sers.
See also:
temikel, v.a.s.is to be shaved or scraped.
temikel a kirel el mengai; kirel el metamk; tomkii; tuamk a chesemel.
See also:
tengetngall, v.a.s.(food) is to be obtained, sought or foraged for.
See also:


State Verbs with Related Nouns

In English, a common thing to do is to ask 'how XXXX is something,' where XXXX is an adjective. For example, 'how hot is that,' or 'how dangerous is that,' are common English expressions.

This is true in Palauan as well in a form like, 'ng uangarang a kleldelel,' which translates literally perhaps to something like, 'it is like what, its heat,' or figuratively as, 'how hot is it.' The word kleldelel is a possessed noun meaning 'its heat.' See the nouns page for a longer explanation of possessed nouns.

Many of these Palauan nouns have related state verbs which translate to, and are used as, English adjectives. Here is a list of seven random Palauan nouns along with their corresponding state verbs.

chedeadjellyfish; nettle.chedead not knowing where to go.
bekngiukmold; (food) moldy/mildewed.bekngiukmold; (food) moldy/mildewed.
H.O.(abbrev.) Babeldaob (used pejoratively).H.O.unexperienced in Western ways; ignorant of modern conveniences.
bengtpurple colored sweet potato.bengtpurple.
cheludechwooden float for fish net; light weight wood used to make corks.cheludechwooden float for fish net; light weight wood used to make corks.
iluodelstones, coconut shells, or similar objects used as support for cooking pot during serving.iluodel(people) sitting, standing or arranged in a circle; (stone platform) built circular.

Reng Idioms as Adjectives

There are many Palauan expressions which use a state verb to describe the Palauan word reng which means spirit or heart. These are idioms which mean their literal and figurative meanings are not the same. Typically, but not always, the figurative meaning describes an emotion. An example is kesib a reng, which literally means a sweaty heart but figuratively it means to be angry. Here is a list of seven random examples of these reng idioms:

orrechorech a rengulextremely angry; wild with anger.
mengerar er a rengul criticise; insult; put down; make someone feel ashamed; hurt someone's feelings.
ultebechel a rengulhonest; mature and responsible.
ngellitel a rengulchoosy.
nguibes a renguldesirous of; lusting after.
mengaidesachel a rengulcompetitive.
omerteret a rengulfed up or exasperated with.

WARN Table 'belau.log_bots' doesn't exist
INSERT INTO log_bots (page,ip,agent,user,proxy) VALUES ('adjectives.php','','CCBot/2.0 (http://commoncrawl.org/faq/)','','')