Lakota Language Course

Nero

Lakota Language Course

Postby Nero » 2006-08-19, 23:03

Ho leháŋl típi unyuhápi, wóoŋspe kiŋ wicabla kte :)

Well now that we've got a forum, I will start the lessons

Background to Lakota:
Lakota is a Native American language, spoken by the Sioux Indian tribe in north america. It has two sister languages, Dakota and Nakoda/Nakota, which are variants. They are all understandable to one another - like english speakers in the UK and others in USA or Austrailia understand each other. Altogether, about 25,000 speakers are out there.

------

Lesson 1: Pronunciation and script
Unlike a lot of other native american groups (The cherokee, Eskimo, Cree), the Lakota don't have one official script. Instead they use variations of the Latin script.

Vowels:
a ---- as in father (Lakota example: luhá)
e ---- as in step (Lakota example: he)
i ---- as in me (Lakota example: hi)
o ---- as in hope (Lakota example: istó)
u ---- as in book, aproaching u in hula (Lakota example: hu)

Nasal Vowels:
aŋ ---- Not in english (Lakota example: tohaŋ)
iŋ ---- Not in english (Lakota example: wiŋyaŋ)
uŋ ---- Not in english (Lakota example: Nakuŋ)

Consonants:
b ---- as in english boy (Lakota example: bluha)
c ---- as in english charlie (Lakota example: chante)
g ---- as in english go (Lakota example: igmu)
gh ---- not in english (Lakota example: ghi)
h ---- as in english hat (Lakota example: he)
ĥ ---- not in english - aspirated h (Lakota example: tĥozí)
j ---- as in english pleasure (Lakota example: janján)
k ---- as in english kite (Lakota example: hánska)
l ---- as in english love (Lakota example: luhá)
m ---- as in english moon (Lakota example: mázaska)
n ---- as in english no (Lakota example: éna)
p ---- as in english peace (Lakota example: sápa)
s ---- as in english step (Lakota example: sápa)
š ---- as in english shop (Lakota example: šica)
t ---- as in english today (Lakota example: tĥípi)
w ---- as in english wait (Lakota example: wóze)
y ---- as in english you (Lakota example: yeló)
z ---- as in english zoo (Lakota example: zi)

In short, most of the letters are pronounced just like English letters.

Differences between the Lakota scripts
As I said, the Lakota don't have one alphabet, so they have many different latin-based orthographies. So differences may occur between the words in this lesson, and the words in dictionaries/on other pages. Examples:

hotanin / hotaŋiŋ / hótaŋiŋ / hótĥaŋiŋ

These all mean "opinion", and can all be recognized by a lakota speaker. Some people use many diacretics, some use none. I use them, for clarity in pronunciation.

Examples of Spoken Lakota:

Eháŋni héceš oyáte waŋ igláka áyiŋ na waná étĥipi yuŋkĥáŋ wicáša waŋ tĥawicu kiŋ heciya: "Winúĥca, itĥo wayé mní kte ló" eyá (Audio file)

Ecáš toháŋ waglí šni héhaŋ éna thí po, eyá (Audio file)
Last edited by Nero on 2006-09-03, 20:32, edited 2 times in total.

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-20, 4:05

Lesson Deux: The definite article, simple sentences, adjectives

Unlike English, Lakota modifier-words come after the noun. For example:

--- ógle tĥó = blue shirt
--- hótĥaŋiŋ mitáwa = my opinion
--- Šúŋka ská = White dog

Adjectives in Lakota don't decline, neither do nouns, they don't even have plural forms. So by simply putting the adjective after the noun, you've created a modified noun.

---Ziŋtkála = Bird
---Ziŋtkála cíkala = Small bird

The definite article in Lakota is kiŋ. It comes after the noun. If you are also using an adjective, you put kiŋ after the adjective. It may seem weird, because it's the exact opposite of the english word order:

---Ziŋtkála kiŋ = The bird
---Ziŋtkála cíkala kiŋ = The small bird
---Šúŋka ská = white dog
---Šúŋka ská kiŋ = the white dog

Now see what happens when the definite article kiŋ moves between the noun and the adjective:

---Ziŋtkála kiŋ cíkala = The bird is small
---Šúŋka kiŋ ská = The dog is white

As you see in the last example, by putting kiŋ in the middle, ská changes from being an adjective (white) to a predicate ([it is] white). I'll make some exercises for this lesson later, but I'm gonna sleep now - it's midnight where I come from. I hope this helps for now

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Postby culúrien » 2006-08-20, 8:28

Fine, Nero, if you're going to beg I'll learn okay! I'm 1/8 Native American, and if I can't learn my heritage's language, I'll learn this one!
استیسی

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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-20, 12:07

Okay. I've got no problem with this lesson.

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-20, 14:20

You don't have to if you don't want to, Celeb :wink: . You have arabic to worry about, not to mention welsh! :shock:

*goes off to write lesson exercises*

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Postby culúrien » 2006-08-20, 15:06

*impatiently waits for exercises* YAY :D
استیسی

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-20, 17:21

Lesson 2: vocabulary exercises

Vocabulary, nouns:
Hogáŋ = fish
Hokšíla = boy
Kóla = friend
Šuŋka = Dog
Waŋblí = eagle
Wicáša = man
Wicíŋcala = girl
Wíŋyaŋ = woman
Wówapi = book
Ziŋtkála = Eagle

Vocabulary, adjectives:
cíkala = small
sápa = black
šápa = dirty
ská = white
táŋka = big
tókeca = strange
zizípela = thin

Exercise 1: choose the correct lakota choice for the English meaning

1. The eagle is white
------A. Waŋblí kiŋ ská
------B. Waŋblí ská kiŋ

2. The strange boy
------A. Hokšíla kiŋ tókeca
------B. Hokšíla tókeca kiŋ

3. The boy is strange
------A. Hokšíla kiŋ tókeca
------B. Hokšíla tókeca kiŋ

4. the small girl
------A. Wicíŋcala cíkala kiŋ
------B. Wicíŋcala kiŋ cíkala

5. the black book
------A. Wówapi kiŋ sápa
------B. Wówapi sápa kiŋ


Exercise 2: Choose the correct English for the given lakota

1. Wicáša kiŋ táŋka
------A. The man is big
------B. The big man

2. Wíŋyaŋ zizípela kiŋ
------A. The woman is thin
------B. The thin woman

3. Šúŋka kiŋ šapa
------A. The dog is dirty
------B. The dirty dog

4. Kóla tókeca kiŋ
------A. The friend is strange
------B. The strange friend

Challenge:

5. Hogáŋ tókeca kiŋ táŋka
------A. The strange, white fish
------B. The strange fish is white

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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-20, 18:20

Exercise 1

1) a
2) b
3) a
4) a
5) b

Exercise 2

1) a
2) b
3) a
4) b

Challange:

5) b


Easy. 8)

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Postby Junesun » 2006-08-20, 18:41

Exercise 1: choose the correct lakota choice for the English meaning

1A, 2B, 3A, 4A, 5B

Exercise 2: Choose the correct English for the given lakota

1A, 2B, 3A, 4B

Challenge:

5B



I was able to recognise the words Šuŋka, Wíŋyaŋ and táŋka because of Karl May. :lol: He always loved to teach his readers foreign words, whether they wanted it or not.

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Postby culúrien » 2006-08-20, 21:15


Exercise 1-
1.A
2.B
3.A
4.A
5.B

Exercise 2-
1.A
2.B
3.A
4.B

Challenge:
5.B
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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-20, 21:29

Can we have another lesson? 8)

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-20, 22:56

Well, no suprise here, everyone is 100% correct.
This exercise may be easy, but watch out, the language will get harder eventually (Wait until we start verbs, Alcadras :twisted: )

Lesson Drei: Tense, Negation, and "to be"

To be:
There is a verb which means "To be" in Lakota. As you've seen, there are times when it can be omitted - like with adjectives. Whenever verbs in Lakota are listed, they are given in the 3rd-person singular form. In order to form all the other persons and plurals, we use this form as a root.

The verb "to be" is un. Here is how we conjugate it:
-----wa + un = waun I am
-----ya + un = yaun you are
-----un = un he/she/it is
-----un + un + pi = unkunpi* we are
-----ya + un + pi = yaunpi you all are
-----un + pi = unpi they are
* when the verb starts with a vowel, un changes to unk

So now we can say things like, Wíŋyaŋ un: She is a woman. Kóla yaun: You are a friend, etc.

NOTE 1: Lakota is an SOV language. Verbs always come last.

NOTE 2: Lakota has an indefinite article (Wan/Wanží) but it is closer to the word "one". It can be omitted.



Negation:

To negate a sentence in Lakota, put "šni" at the end of the sentence.

-----Šuŋka táŋka un = It is a big dog
-----Šuŋka táŋka un šni = It is not a big dog

-----Wicáša kiŋ yaun = You're the man
-----Wicáša kiŋ yaun šni = You are not the man

-----Ziŋtkála kiŋ cíkala = The bird is small
-----Ziŋtkála kiŋ cíkala šni = The bird is not small


Past and Future

In Lakota, verbs don't have a past form. So any present-tense verb can also be a past tense. Ex: "waun" can mean "I am" or "I was". Context usually indicates the difference.

However, there is a way to indicate future: by putting "kte" at the end of the sentence.

----- Wíŋyaŋ un = she is a woman
----- Wíŋyaŋ un kte = she will be a woman

----- Hogáŋ kiŋ cíkala = The fish is small
----- Hogáŋ kiŋ cíkala kte = The fish will be small

-----Wíŋyaŋ zizípela yaun kte = You will be a thin woman
-----Wíŋyaŋ zizípela yaun kte šni = You will not be a thin woman

This is fairly simple compared to some european languages which have totally different conjugations. In lakota, you just have to add a particle to the end.

Exercises to follow. If anyone has any questions, feel free to ask :D

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-21, 15:42

Lesson 3: vocabulary + exercises

Vocabulary, nouns:
Hogáŋ = fish
Hokšíla = boy
Kóla = friend
Šuŋka = Dog
Waŋblí = eagle
Wicáša = man
Wicíŋcala = girl
Wíŋyaŋ = woman
Wówapi = book
Ziŋtkála = Eagle
heyóka = clown
itáŋcaŋ = chief
mahpíya = sky
ocágku = road
wíta = island
wakpá = river


Vocabulary, adjectives:
cíkala = small
sápa = black
šápa = dirty
ská = white
táŋka = big
tókeca = strange
zizípela = thin
bláha = wide
cépa = fat
ksápa = wise
šíca = bad
wašté = good


Vocabulary, Verbs + Particles
Un - to be
šni - negation
kte - future

Exercise 1: Translate English to Lakota

1. They are chiefs (remember, nouns don't have plural forms - plural is indicated by the verb)
------A. itáŋcaŋ un
------B. itáŋcaŋ unpi

2. They are not chiefs
------ itáŋcaŋ unpi šni
------ itáŋcaŋ unpi kte

3. He will be a strange clown
------heyóka tókeca waun kte
------heyóka tókeca un kte

4. The river is not wide
------wakpá kiŋ bláha šni
------mahpíya kiŋ bláha šni

5. The man won't be wise
------Wicáša kiŋ ksápa kte šni
------Wicáša ksápa kiŋ kte šni
Last edited by Nero on 2006-08-22, 21:37, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-21, 18:49

1) b
2) a
3) b
4) a
5) a

8)

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-21, 23:53

Lesson 4: Stative Verbs (things start to get tough)

Well now it's time to dive into some of the harder stuff :twisted:

In Lakota so far, you know three types of constructions.

------Noun + Noun (ex: The friend is a girl, Kóla kiŋ Wicíŋcala)
------Noun + Adjective (ex: the fish is small, Hogáŋ kiŋ cíkala)
------Pronoun + Noun (ex: she is a girl, Wicíŋcala un)

So logically what comes next? Pronoun + Adjective (ex: I am good). However, here is the problem. You can't say, "wašté waun". You may ask, "why not? wašté means good and waun means I-am". Well here's why: we actually use a different construction, using stative verbs.

A stative verb is a verb like, "To be good" or "To be alive" etc. And actually, most of the adjectives listed here are actually stative verbs too. Here is the conjugation of the stative verb "wašté", to be good:

mawašté = I am good
niwašté = you are good
wašté = he/she/it is good
unwaštépi = we are good
niwaštépi = you (pl) are good
waštépi = they are good

Notice two things:
1. The particles used in this verb conjugation are different from the particles used in "un" (to be) and it's conjugation. Stative Verbs conjugate different, because they're a different verb class.

2. The particles were added to the beginning of the verb. This doesn't always happen, some conjugate inside (ex: ipuza = to be thirsty, imapuza = I am thirsty). Unfortunately, the conjugation position has to be learned with each verb individually. Whenever I give a stative verb, I'll also give the conjugation position.

So here are some examples of stative verbs:

------Wicáša kiŋ wašté = The man is good
------Wicáša kiŋ waštépi = The men are good
------Hokšíla kiŋ waštépi kte, naíŋš iyómakiphi kte šni = The children will be good, or I will not be happy.

------nicépa = you are fat
------nicépa šni = you are not fat

etc. Does this make sense , or should I explain further?

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Postby Junesun » 2006-08-22, 15:52

Lesson 3 exercise answers:

1B, 2A, 3B, 4A, 5A

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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-22, 19:22

That makes sense,Nero. I'm done with all lessons. You can ask whatever you want. :lol:

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-22, 19:43

Alrighty. I heard Celeb had a question about stative verbs, so I wanted to wait before I went on to anything else.

Adjectives = Stative Verbs.

Then again, a lot of things can be verbs. There is a stative verb "Lakóta" which means, "to be a lakota/indian". some teacher of the language once had the website name, "malakota.com" -> meaning, I am a lakota.com

Weeeelll that being said, I'm gonna write up some exercises. I'll post them later tonight (EST TIME :lol: )

Nero

Postby Nero » 2006-08-22, 21:36

Lesson 4 Exercises:

Vocabulary, nouns:
Hogáŋ = fish
Hokšíla = boy
Kóla = friend
Šuŋka = Dog
Waŋblí = eagle
Wicáša = man
Wicíŋcala = girl
Wíŋyaŋ = woman
Wówapi = book
Ziŋtkála = Eagle
heyóka = clown
itáŋcaŋ = chief
mahpíya = sky
ocágku = road
wíta = island
wakpá = river

Vocabulary, adjectives/Stative verbs (conjugate at front unless otherwise noted) :
cíkala = small
sápa = black
šápa = dirty
ská = white
táŋka = big
tókeca = strange
zizípela = thin
bláha = wide
cépa = fat
ksápa = wise
šíca = bad
wašté = good
ípuza = thirsty (conjugates after "í")
taŋyáŋ = to be well/healthy


Vocabulary, Verbs + Particles
Un - to be
šni - negation
kte - future

Misc:
na - and
naíŋš - or



Exercise 1: Translate English to Lakota:

1. The clowns are strange
------A. heyóka kiŋ tókecapi
------B. heyóka kiŋ tókeca

2. I am good
------A. wašté waun
------B. mawašté

3. The eagle is large
------A. Waŋblí kiŋ táŋkapi
------B. Waŋblí kiŋ táŋka

4. The large eagle is not small
------A. Waŋblí ská kiŋ cíkala šni
------B. Waŋblí kiŋ ská cíkala šni

5. You (pl) are thirsty
------A. ínipuzapi
------B. niípuzapi

Exercise 2: Translate Lakota to English

1. Hokšíla kiŋ waštépi šni
------A. The boy is not good
------B. The boys are not good

2. Wíŋyaŋ unkunpi
------A. We are women
------B. They are women

3. nicépa kte šni
------A. You (pl) won't be fat
------B. You won't be fat

4. Šuŋka táŋka kiŋ šápa šni
------A. The big dog is not black
------B. The big dog is not dirty

Challenge:

5. heyóka kiŋ tókeca kte šni
------A. The clown will be strange
------B. The clown is not strange
------c. The clown will not be strange

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Postby Alcadras » 2006-08-23, 19:06

Exercise 1

1) a
2) b
3) b
4) a
5) b

Exercise 2

1) b
2) a
3) a
4) b

Challange:

5) c


8)


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