Present Tense

Zulu Lesson 13 (Present Tense & Survival)

Duration: 30 mins

Lessons Zulu Lessons
Linguistic Zulu Vocabulary
Culture Zulu Phrases
Structure Zulu Grammar

This 13th lesson deals with the present tense in Zulu. In addition I included a vocabulary list about survival and emergencies. I will try to give examples using both vocabulary and grammar. That way it will be easy for you to see the words when they are separate and when they are in a sentence. Going through the whole page should take about 30 min. Make sure to read the pronunciation and hear the audio as well. If you have any question about this course, please email me directly at Zulu Classes.


The present is one of the 3 tenses (past, present, and future) we will be discussing in the next 3 lessons. So it is recommended not to skip any of them because they are all related.

Below is a list of 15 sentences conjugated into the present tense. I focused on the examples you might come across or use very often. The table contains 3 columns (English, Zulu, and Audio). Make sure you repeat each word after hearing it by either clicking on the audio button or by reading the pronunciation. That should help with memorization as well as improving your pronunciation.

Present Tense in Zulu

Present Zulu Audio
I see youNgiyakubona
I write with a penNgibhala ngepeni
You love applesUyawathanda ama-apula
You give moneyUnikeza imali
You play tennisUdlala i-tennis
He reads a bookUfunda incwadi
He understands meUyangiqonda mina
She has a catUnekati
She knows my friendUyamazi umngane wami
We want to learnSifuna ukufunda
We think Spanish is easySicabanga ukuthi iSpanishi silula
You (plural) work hereNina nisebenza lapha
You (plural) speak FrenchNina nikhuluma isiFulentshi
They drive a carBashayela imoto
They smileBayamomotheka


If you have any questions, please contact me using the Zulu contact form on the header above.

Survival Expressions

Below is a list of 28 words related to survival expressions such as emergencies, and calling for help. If you can memorize them by heart, you will be able to communicate better when in distress or when providing help to someone else who is in need.

Survival Expressions in Zulu

AsthmaIsifuba somoya
Headacheukuphathwa ikhanda
Heart attackIsifo senhliziyo
Help mengisize
Stomach acheukuphathwa isisu
StrokeIsifo sikanhlangothi


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Daily Conversation in Zulu

Finally, here are some common sentences to strengthen your conversation skills. For a complete list of commonly used sentences, please visit our Zulu Phrases page. Enjoy!

Common Expressions in Zulu

Are you okay?uyaphila?
Call a doctor!Biza udokotela
Call the ambulance!biza i-ambulensi
Call the police!biza amaphoyisa
Calm down!Yehlisa umoya
I feel sickNgiyagula
It hurts hereKubuhlungu lapha
It's urgent!Kuyaphuthuma
Where is the closest pharmacy?likuphi ikhemisi eliseduzane?
You look beautiful! (to a woman)Umuhle!
You have a beautiful nameUnegama elihle
This is my wifenangu unkosikazi wami
This is my husbandNgumyeni wami lona

Fun Facts

Language Quote: ❝To have another language is to possess a second soul.❞ ‒Charlemagne

Congratulations! You finished your 13th lesson in Zulu about the present tense, and survival expressions. Are you ready for the next lesson? We recommend Zulu Lesson 14. You can also simply click on one of the links below or go back to our Learn Zulu homepage.

Lessons Zulu Lessons
Linguistic Zulu Vocabulary
Culture Zulu Phrases
Structure Zulu Grammar