Pronunciation & orthography
I wish to start with pronunciation and orthography I'll be using since there are some differences between resources. In my opinion the one on the Wikipedia page is the most correct, it's also used in the main course
I'll be using.
Yucatec Maya alphabet consists of 24 letters, 19 of which are consonants:
| b || ch || ch' || h || k || k' || l || m || n || p || p' || s || t || t' || ts || ts' || w || x || y || ' |
And 5 vowels:
They may be used to show long vowels, which carry tone:
Basics first, personal pronouns. There are two types of them - independent
pronouns. For now I don't know much about the difference between them. From what I've seen dependent pronouns are the ones that accompany a verb to denote its subject, while independent are... well, independent! I will learn more about them later. Independent pronouns
|3rd person||leti' / ti'||letio'ob / tio'ob|
First conjugations (yay)
Model of the conjugation for Immediate Present
in the Yucatec Maya language looks something like that:
- The first column shows the independent personal pronouns, which are optional and are used mostly for emphasis I believe. They are different from the ones shown in the table above. I'm not sure, but I guess the first table shows Patient forms, while the ones used now are Agent forms.
- The second element is the auxilliary verb (or particle?) táan, denoting the Present Actual.
- The third element is the "short" or "dependent" personal pronoun, like in the table above.
- The fourth element is the verb. In this example the verb used is míis 'to sweep'. As seen, the form stays the same everywhere except 2nd and 3rd plural, where it takes suffix -e'ex (for 2nd) and -o'ob (for 3rd). Afaik the -o'ob suffix is also used to make a plural noun from singular...
- The translation for the above sentences then will be something like: "I am sweeping", "you are sweeping", etc. This construction is used in situations when English would use Present Continuous, I guess?
More complicated are verbs which start with a vowel, since they also take an additional semivowel (y/w) before the root, as follows (a'al
'to say, tell'):
I've read in the grammar that the -ik
suffix is a "verb ending appended to the verb root to form the transitive verb". But it's for some other lesson...
The auxilliary táan may also contract with the following personal pronoun. Examples:
The Habitual Present Tense
is formed by taking the contracted táan form and changing the 't' to 'k':
These forms are surely a contraction of some auxilliary verb starting with 'k-', but I don't know which one yet.
That's it for now. In the next post I will write some more examples and exercises of conjugation, and start the next lesson as well. I started learning a bit early, but I was bored and later I won't have as much time, so why not use it?