Which one’s suitable?

Reta Vortaro to the rescue again! I worked out today that I’d read two words at different times, looked up their definitions and carried on, but thinking back, realised I have no idea what the difference between them is!

Here’s the pair, with the corresponding short lernu translations to English:

  • taŭga: suitable, of use
  • konvena: suitable, appropriate, fitting

So here’s what we get from the Reta Vortaro:


  • to be adequate, useable for something
  • to be capable of something


  • well adapted to a determined situation or precise circumstance
  • well adapted to someone’s feelings, character of social status
  • decent (e.g. it’s not konvena to occupy a seat when an old lady cannot find one)

Taŭga is a more extensive concept than konvena. Konvena refers only to the specially adapted use of something, whereas taŭga speaks of all of it’s uses.

The example the Reta Vortaro gives is a tea cup. It’s konvena only for drinking tea, but taŭga for that and also for measuring quantities of ingredients too!

Interestingly, if you look up these in the Eo-Eo dictionary of Lernu, you get the equivalent of:

  • taŭga: entirely good for some aim
  • konvena: that which is generally pleasing to other people in a certain situation

The definition of “konvena” seeming to be most different from what RV says.

Even more interestingly, both of these words are actually action roots (i-words naturally, see previous post on root types).

  • taŭgi : to be taŭga
  • konveni : to be konvena

And when you look up these words in the Eo-Eo lernu dictionary, you get the matching RV definitions.

So I’m inclined to go with the RV. Do you agree that the lernu definitions of the a-words don’t seem to match up to their i-word meanings? Or at least don’t nail the concepts? If so, maybe you or I should make a thread about it on lernu! 😀



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