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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Are there constructions or words that are used to translate the Present Emphatic Tense and Past Emphatic Tense? Examples,"I do wash the dishes every night" and "I did wash the dishes every night."

The emphatic "do", "did", "will" are not translated in the Haitian Creole language.
So an emphatic present tense will become a simple present in Creole.
An emphatic past tense will become a simple past tense in Creole
Otherwise you will see these emphatic wi or non, usually, at the end of a Creole sentence.
Pa egzanp:
1. I did see her last night.
    Mwen te wè li yèreswa wi.
or we might use an adverb for emphasis as is sometimes done in English too
    Mwen te wè li yèreswa tout bon vre.
    Mwen te wè li yèreswa vrèman vre.

2. I do wash the dishes every night.
    Mwen lave asyèt yo chak swa wi.

3. Please, do sit down.
    Tanpri, chita non.

4. Do play the piano for me.
    Jwe piano pou mwen non.
5. Please, do call me when you get there.
    Tanpri, rele m wi lè w rive.

7.  I did my homework, I did!
     M te fè devwa mwen, m te fè l wi!    

8. If you don't stop bugging me, I'll bite you.  Serously I will!
   Si w pa sispann takinnen m, m'ap mòde w.  Seryezman, m'ap fè l wi!

Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words


  1. In addition to the 'wi' used for emphasis, I figured as much that an adverb can be used to convey that same meaning. I found myself tending to use adverbs from french(but in creole form) where words like 'vraiment', 'bien','fort'(formal),and sometimes 'tout', and 'très' and even informal ones such as bourgrement, drôlement, and vachement that are used for emphasis. My french professor said that the first two can be used emphasize the present tense when it is ambiguous or when stress is needed. Although these words means very, they can have the meaning of 'do' in the right context like the present tense. What do you think of this?

    1. Yes, your professor is right.

      In addition to byen, trè, vrèman you will see that Haitians use the followings depending on the situation:
      tout bon, tout bon vre,, vrèman vre, reyèlman, reyèlman vre

      Some examples:

      1. I do love you.
      Mwen renmen w tout bon
      Mwen vrèman renmen'w.
      Mwen renmen w vrèman vre.

      2. Man! That girl does know how to sing
      Mezanmi! Fanm sa konn chante reyèlman vre

      3. I can't believe you said I didn't call you yesterday. I did call you! I really did!
      M pa ka kwè ou di m pa't rele w yè. Reyèlaman vre, mwen te rele'w tout bon.