Lesson: Putting Together Relative Pronouns and Only & Alone

A. Introduction

For this exercise, we are going to focus on putting a pair of different pieces together from previous lessons. In this particular lesson, we are going to work on combining both relative pronouns and “Only” & “Alone” in Rukiga through composing short phrases in Rukiga. The main learning goal for this lesson to focus on noun classes. This is a key skill for both writing and speaking Rukiga for new learners.

Before we begin, the learner should review the two former lessons: Relative Pronouns in Rukiga and “Only” and “Alone” in Rukiga. These lessons will form the basis of this exercise.

A few points to remember:

  • The noun class is determined by the noun being used;
  • The noun class should be consistent throughout the phrases; we will work on including both the relative pronouns as well as the use of
    “Only” and/or “Alone”;
  • Regarding grammatical construction, it is important to remember that the “Only” and/or “Alonne” words come after the noun they are modifying. For example, “omuti gwonka“, or the “only tree”, is the correct way to say and write phrases using only or alone.
  • There is a lot of variation in how these sentences are constructed. Focus on the noun class agreement.

B. Instructions

  1. Review the aforementioned lessons as well as the aforementioned points to remember.
  2. Review the provided examples below.
  3. Using the examples as well as the two former lessons noted above, complete the practice sentences through either writing in Rukiga or translating from Rukiga to English.

C . Examples

  1. Omukazi omulingwa wenka ni munywani wangye.
  •  Omukazi means “women” and is in the “Mu-Ba” noun class. This noun class must be consistent, so “o-” becomes the prefix for “-mulingwa” to signify the relative pronoun.  And then “wenka” is added as the Mu-Ba third person singular for “alone/only” Thus, we have the translation in English of “Only the woman who is tall is my friend”.
  1. Omuti  oguringwa gwonka gwatema.
  • Omuti means “tree” and is in the “Mu-Mi” noun class. “Ogu-” becomes the prefix for – mulingwa, but the “mu” is dropped due to the ogu prefix. “Gwonka” is added due to the noun class. Thus, we have a translation in English of “Only the tree which is tall is the one which she cut”


Let us practice!


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