Learn Swahili

Learn phrases in the Swahili language online by selecting the Swahili phrases that you want to learn from the list. These cover a wide variety of Swahili topics, including the numbers in Swahili, days of the week in Swahili, Swahili greetings and the months in Swahili. The Swahili phrases have audio recorded by a native speaker.

Swahili phrases

A few first words. 1, A few first words. 2, Bathroom items, Bedroom items, Buying thing. General phrases, Buyings things. Useful words, Countries, Communication problems, Conversation. Introductions, Conversation. Small talk. 1, Conversation. Filler words, Conversation. Small talk. Sport, Conversation. Small talk. The weather, Sport, Describing things. Colours, Describing things. Adjectives, Days. General, Days of the week, Directions. 1, Directions. 2, Eating phrases. 1, Eating phrases. 2, Eating items, Emergencies, Family, Food and drink. At the bar or café. 1, Food and drink. At the bar or café. 2, Food and drink. At the bar or café. 3, Getting around. General words, Getting around. General phrases, Getting around. Train and bus, Getting around by taxi, Getting around by car, Health, Money, Months of the year, Numbers. 1 to 10, Numbers. 11 to 20, Numbers. 30 to 1000, Parts of the body, Places and buildings. 1, Places and buildings. 2, Useful words, Question and size words, Special occasions, Sightseeing, Somewhere to stay. 1, Somewhere to stay. 2, The house, Useful words to recognize, Words to do with food. General, Words to do with food. Fruit, Words to do with food. Vegetables, Words to do with food. Meat, Time, Clothing, Common nouns. 1, Common nouns. 2. Common nouns. 3, Common nouns. 4.

Swahili language learning games

As well as the flashcards for the Swahili phrases on the right, there are additional learning games for colours, days, fruit, months, numbers and vegetables.

Colours

Fruit

Months

Numbers. 1 to 10

Numbers. 1 to 20

Vegetables

Test whether you know the difference between a tikiti maji, chungwa, mboga ya saladi and kitunguu, can count from moja to kumi and know nyekundu from zambarau.

Swahili Language

Swahili is an agglutinative language and has a very elegant system used to indicate the Subject (and Object) of a sentence. This is carried out using Subject Prefix's or markers which are attached to the verb.

Swahili verbs are often given in the stem form in dictionaries. An example ois 'lala' meaning 'sleep'. Various markers are then added or prefixed. An example is ku which is equivalent to the english infinitive. So, ku added to the verb stem gives the infinitive, and using sleep as the the example, 'kulala' means to sleep

Articles. Definite and indefinite articles do not exist in Swahili. Instead the meaning of a word within a sentence must be provided by the context. So 'mtoto' means 'child', 'a child' or 'the child'.

Nouns in Swahili have singular and plural.

Adjectives always come after and generally agree with the noun, so in Swahili 'good dog' is 'dog good'.

Resources

The Swahili language. An outline of the Swahili language and its grammar.
Internet living Swahili dictionary. A non profit organization dedicated to creating a dictionary of Swahili and other African languages.