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The 82 Most Common Verbs In Toki Pona (With Pictures)

The 82 Most Common Verbs In Toki Pona (With Pictures)

Learning verbs is important for any language, as you won’t really be able to do much without them.

Verbs (nimi pali) can, however, be tricky in toki pona. This is because there are only 125 root words in the language, and many of these have multiple meanings. Add to that the lack of consensus on which verbs to use in a given sentence, and you’ve got a recipe for confusion.

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That’s why we’ve taken this collection of verbs from the official Toki Pona Dictionary, compiled by the language’s creator, Sonja Lang. This comprehensive dictionary gives each entry a score to signify how commonly used it is compared with its synonyms.

Our list includes the translations with the highest scores, so you can rest assured that you’re always using the most popular word.

How do verbs work in toki pona?

toki pona has a simple grammatical structure, based on a small number of root words. Each word can have multiple meanings, depending on how and where it’s used in a sentence, and almost all words can be used as verbs, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs.

For example, “moku” can mean both “to eat” and “food”.

While this can be slightly confusing when you first start learning the language, it’s actually quite straightforward once you get used to it. In most cases, the meaning of a word is clear from the context in which it’s used.

toki pona verb conjugation

The good news is, verbs in toki pona aren’t conjugated, so you don’t need to worry about changing the ending of a word to indicate tense or person. What this means is that a verb will always have the same form, regardless of who is doing the action or when it’s happening.

For example, the verb “moku” can be used to mean “I eat/ate”, “you eat/ate”, etc.

So, now that you know how verbs work in toki pona, let’s take a look at some of the most common ones.

List of 82 Verbs in toki pona

toki pona Verbs 1 – 16

toki pona verbs 1

Verbs 1 – 16 (English) nimi pali 1 – 16 (toki pona)
be lon
have jo
do pali
go tawa
see lukin
know sona
like pona tawa
want wile
work pali
come kama
speak toki
eat moku
drink moku
sleep lape
live lon
become kama

toki pona Verbs 17 – 32

toki pona verbs 2

Verbs 17 – 32 (English) nimi pali 17 – 32 (toki pona)
die moli
leave weka
stay awen
return kama sin
give pana
take kama jo
send pana
make pali
find alasa
learn kama sona
tell toki
think toki insa
believe pilin
understand sona
remember awen sona
must wile

toki pona Verbs 33 – 48

toki pona verbs 3

Verbs 33 – 48 (English) nimi pali 33 – 48 (toki pona)
forget weka sona
use kepeken
need wile
be able to (can) ken
smile pona uta
look lukin
listen kute
cost mani
help pana pona
cook seli
love olin
hope wile
fear pilin ike
cry telo oko
drive lawa e tomo tawa
sing kalama musi

toki pona Verbs 49 – 64

toki pona verbs 4

Verbs 49 – 64 (English) nimi pali 49 – 64 (toki pona)
walk tawa
run tawa wawa
play musi
laugh kalama musi
dance tawa musi
swim tawa telo
get kama jo
read lukin
open open
close pini
dream sitelen lape
ask wile sona
answer toki
visit tawa
feel pilin
try lukin

toki pona Verbs 65 – 82

toki pona verbs 5

Verbs 65 – 82 (English) nimi pali 65 – 82 (toki pona)
shower telo
wear len
take off/remove weka
put on (clothes) len
buy esun
put pana
say toki
hear kute
sit awen
stand awen
turn tawa sike
start open
choose wile
stop pini
touch luka
shout toki wawa
write sitelen
wash telo

If you’re interested in learning some more toki pona, check out our post Where to Learn Toki Pona.