-ul-, -un-, -uk-

The verb formed with the radical plus the above suffixes indicates an opposite action to the one described with the initial verb. There exist two forms of reversive suffixes: active and passive.

Reversive active suffixes: -ul-, -un-

Verbs thus formed are transitive. They need an object.


  • kukànga (fermer, to close) → kukangula (ouvrir, to open)
  • kuvwàla (vêtir, to put clothes on) → kuvùùla (dévêtir, to put clothes off)
  • kulamika (coller, attacher, to glue, to attach) → kulamuna (détacher, to detach)


Reversive passive suffix : -uk-

Verbs including this suffix are intransitive and imply a state or a condition in which the subject sustains an opposite action.


  • kukanga (fermer, to close) → kukanguka (s’ouvrir, to be opened)
  • kubutula (exterminer, exterminate) → kubutuka (se faire exterminer , to be exterminated)
  • kupapula (effrayer, to frighten) → kupapuka (s’effrayer, to be frightened)
  • kwambula (porter, to lift up) → kwambuka (se faire porter, to be lifted)

Source: CRIC

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s