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Getting Acquainted with Nahuatl Nouns

Getting Acquainted with Nahuatl Nouns

If you are a beginner, start with this lesson, and keep in mind that I am discussing Early Modern Nahuatl from the Valley of Mexico, other dialects will vary. Subsequent lessons will build upon this lesson.

For tips on how to pronounce Nahuatl, click here. For other Nahuatl resources, click here.

 

What is a noun?

A noun is a word that can be the subject of a clause, or the object (indirect or direct) of a verb. In simple terms, it is a person, place, or thing.

In Nahuatl, there is one important way to identify nouns, four absolutive suffixes, which are:

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Nahuatl Lesson: Abstract Nouns — the -liztli and -iztli suffixes

Nahuatl Lesson: Abstract Nouns — the -liztli and -iztli suffixes

Abstract nouns – -liztli, and -iztli suffixes

This lesson will only cover abstract nouns in Early Modern Nahuatl, not contemporary dialects.

An abstract noun is a noun that cannot be seen or touched. It can be a quality (beauty), a state (hope and death), or an idea (freedom and education). The English language, like many others, offers speakers and writers the ability to create abstract nouns from verbs. For example:

Obedience from obey

Judgment from Judge

Death from Die

Knowledge from Know

Growth from grow

Pleasure from please

In Nahuatl, like English, you can turn a verb into an abstract noun. We can achieve this by adding the pervasive -liztli or -iztli suffix to a verb. The -liztli suffix is important because it allows a verb, to be possessed, something that is not possible when a verb is in its normal state.

For example:

Nemi – To live.

You can say, ninemi (ni-nemi) I live.

You could also say, tinemi (ti-nemi), you live.

You are not soundly capable of saying nonemi (no-nemi) my live.

 

This changes when we add the -liztli suffix to nemi. Giving us Nemiliztli, living or life. The savy reader will notice that close connection to the root verb- Nemi, but also that there is now an absolutive suffix on the word, in fact making it a noun.

Thus,

Nonemiliz (no-nemiliz(tli)) is now a viable option. Which means, “my life.” Monemiliz (mo-nemiliz(tli)) is also possible, which means, “your life.”

Here are some examples, with answers all the way at the bottom so you can see how well you are doing.

  1. Chololiztli
  2. Nochololiz
  3. Tlacualiztli (Tlaqualiztli)
  4. Monepohualiztli
  5. Nezahualiztli

 

Some things to be aware of. Be sure to recognize that if you see a word that ends with in -liz or -iz, and it has a possessive prefix, that word is a verb turned noun that is possessed. The missing absolutive suffix gives it away.

 

 

 

Answers:

  1. Chololiztli
    • Cholo(a)-liztli
    • To flee – abstract suffix
    • Flight
  2. Nochololiz
    • No-cholo(a)-liz(tli)
    • My-to flee- abstract suffix
    • My flight, My escape
  3. Tlacualiztli (Tlaqualiztli)
    • Tlacua-liztli
    • To eat – abstract suffix
    • Eat, as in, something to eat, or food
  4. Monepohualiztli
    • mo-ne-pohua-liztli
    • Your-indef reflex – to be arrogant – abstracting suffix
    • Your arrogance
  5. Nezahualiztli
    • Ne-zahua-liztli
    • Indefinite reflexive – to fast- abstracting noun
    • Fast
Tips on Pronouncing Nahuatl

Tips on Pronouncing Nahuatl

This page is intended for academic use as a tool to help students hear a native speaker of Nahuatl (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronounce words and phrases. None of the files on this page or the rest of the site should be used without prior consent, and can never be used for commercial purposes.

Esta página fue creada para uso académico solamente con el fin de que los estudiantes del náhuatl pueden escuchar a una nativo hablante (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronunciar palabras y frases. Ninguna parte de esta página o sitio se puede usar sin consentimiento previo y expreso. Ninguna parte se podrá usar para propósitos comerciales.


First rule of thumb, if you speak Spanish, default to pronouncing Nahuatl like Spanish over any other language. Nahuatl has very specific sounds that did not derive from Spanish nor should they be mistaken with Spanish, but the two languages have developed together over the course of the last 500 years. Nahuatl was put into the Latin alphabet by early modern Spanish speakers, thus written Nahuatl is closer to Spanish, than French or English.

With that in mind, open your mind, and get ready to pronounce Nahuatl.


The “C”  Sound

Like Latin American Spanish the “C” in Nahuatl makes an “S” sound when it is followed by an “I” or “E.” When followed by any other vowel it sounds like a “K.”

Ce – One

      ce

Cecec – Cold, a cold thing

      cecec

Caxtolli – Fifteen

      caxtolli

Cualli – Good

      cualli_2

Cihuatl – Woman

      cihuatl

The “X”

In Nahuatl the X is pronounced like the “Sh” in American English.

Xochitl – Flower

      xochitl

Xihuitl – Year, Leaf, Herb

      xihuitl

The “Tl,” in any part of a word

What is represented by two letters should be considered a one letter sound that is a “T” sound with air being pushed from both sides of the tongue. This is undoubtedly one of the most difficult sounds to recreate as a student of Nahuatl. There is nothing quite like it in English or Spanish. Listen closely to how Caty ends her words with “tl,” and how the “tl” sound is special in any part of the word, such as, tlacatl

Mazatl – Deer

      mazatl

Tlacatl – Man

      tlacatl

Pahtli – Medicine

      pahtli

Etl – Bean

      etl

Tetl – Rock

      tetl

The “Hu” Sound

The Hu produced a sound very similar to the “W” in American English. Let the vowel that follows the “Hu” guide the sound. Hu+a = Wa, Hu+I=We, Hu+e = Wee (as in Wet). Thus, Cuahuitl, sounds like kwa-we-tl

Cuahuitl – Tree

      cuahuitl

Cihuatl – Woman

      cihuatl

Qu, Cu

The “Qu” and “Cu” sounds can cause some confusion because they are similar in apperance. “Que” sounds just like Latin American Spanish’s “que,” or American English’s “Ke” as in “Kelp.” “Qui” sounds just like American English’s “KEY.” “Cui” sounds like the “Quee” in “Queen” in American English. “Cue” sounds like “Coo-eh” in American English. Finally, “Cua” and “Qua” are interchangeable and sound like the “Qua” in “QUADRANT” in American English.

Cueloa – To bend or fold something

      cueloa

Cui – To grab something

      cui

Ximoquetza – Get up

      ximoquetza

Tlacua – Eat

      tlacua

Quiza – Leave, emerge, or exit

      quiza
Salutations and Other Basics in Nahuatl

Salutations and Other Basics in Nahuatl

This page is intended for academic use as a tool to help students hear a native speaker of Nahuatl (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronounce words and phrases. None of the files on this page or the rest of the site should be used without prior consent, and can never be used for commercial purposes.

Esta página fue creada para uso académico solamente con el fin de que los estudiantes del náhuatl puedan escuchar a una nativo hablante (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronunciar palabras y frases. Ninguna parte de esta página o sitio se puede usar sin consentimiento previo y expreso. Ninguna parte se podrá usar para propósitos comerciales.

 

Salutations and the Basics

The words contained in these recordings were done in the conventions of la Huasteca Veracruzana. Other dialects of Nahuatl might use different words, please keep that in mind. The pronunciation also follows the style of la Huasteca Veracruzana.


No

      axtlen

Yes – Si

      quena

 


Problem – Problema

      cualantli

It is good/okay – Esta bien

      cualtitoc

Salutation (used among women) – Saludo (usado entre mujeres)

      hoo

Good, okay, very well (denotes approval, acceptance, agreement, assent, or acknowledgment) – Bueno (denota aprobación)

      huenoh

I salute (greet) you (used among Macehualmeh) – Saludo (usado entre macehualmeh)

      nimitztlahpaloz

Salutation – Saludo

      niyohua

Salutation (used for coyomeh) – Saludo (para coyomeh)

      piyali

See you later – Nos vemos

      timoittazceh

See you soon – Nos vemos pronto


      timoittazcehyoc

Salutation (Used among men) – Salud0 (Usado entre hombres)

      timomelahuah

Thank you – Gracias

      tlazcamati

What’s up? – ¿Que paso? (Saludo)

      tlempanoc

Forgive me / Sorry – Perdon/ Lo Siento

      xinechtlapopolhui

There isn’t any – No hay

      axoncah
A Few Animals in Nahuatl from the Huasteca Veracruzana

A Few Animals in Nahuatl from the Huasteca Veracruzana

This page is intended for academic use as a tool to help students hear a native speaker of Nahuatl (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronounce words and phrases. None of the files on this page or the rest of the site should be used without prior consent, and can never be used for commercial purposes.

Esta página fue creada para uso académico solamente con el fin de que los estudiantes del náhuatl puedan escuchar a una nativo hablante (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronunciar palabras y frases. Ninguna parte de esta página o sitio se puede usar sin consentimiento previo y expreso. Ninguna parte se podrá usar para propósitos comerciales.

 

Animals/Animales

The names for animals contained in these recordings were done in the conventions of la Huasteca Veracruzana. Some animals have different names in other Nahuatl speaking areas, please keep that in mind. The pronunciation also follows the style of la Huasteca Veracruzana.


 Armadillo

      calolo

Dog – Perro 

      chichi

Scorpion – Escorpión

      colotl

Tick – Garrapata

      conchura

Coyote

      coyotl

Leaf-Cutter Ant – Hormiga Corta Hoja

      cuacihuapil

Boar – Jabalí

      cuapitzotl

Rabbit – Conejo

      cuatochin

Skunk – Zorillo

      epatl

Blood Engorged Tick – Garrpata llena de sangre

      ezpolon

Ant  – Hormiga

      ixcanelin

Raccoon – Mapache

      mapachin

Deer – Venado

      mazatl

Mosquito/Zancudo

      moyotl

Fox  – Zorro

      oztotl

Flea – Pulga

      tecpin

Badger – Tejón

      tehon

Possum – Tlacuache

      tlacuachin

Iguana 

      tlacuaquilotl

Spider – Araña 

      tocatl

Squirrel – Ardilla

      tocomahtli

Argentine Ant – Hormiga Argentina

      totochin

Bird – Pájaro

      tototl

Mole – Topo

      tozan

Fire Ant – Hormiga brava

      tzicatl

Mountain lion / Wildcat – Gato montés

      zacamiztli

Mites (Scabies) – Ácaro (Sarna)

      zahuatl

Fly – Mosca

      zayolin

Louse – Piojo

      atimitl
How to Pronounce Colors and Numbers in Nahuatl

How to Pronounce Colors and Numbers in Nahuatl

This page is intended for academic use as a tool to help students hear a native speaker of Nahuatl (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronounce words and phrases. None of the files on this page or the rest of the site should be used without prior consent, and can never be used for commercial purposes.

Esta página fue creada para uso académico solamente con el fin de que los estudiantes del náhuatl pueden escuchar a una nativo hablante (Catalina de la Cruz Cruz) pronunciar palabras y frases. Ninguna parte de esta página o sitio se puede usar sin consentimiento previo y expreso. Ninguna parte se podrá usar para propósitos comerciales.

 

Numbers – Numeros

The pronunciations contained in this section were recorded in the style of la Huasteca Veracruzana. Other variants (i.e., dialects) of Nahuatl might vary in certain constructions or pronunciation, but most are very similar. It is also important to note that the Nahua counting system, like most Mesoamerican systems, is vigesimal. In other words, it is a system that goes by 20, unlike decimal Western counting systems that go by 10. Here you are given the first set of 20 numbers, in a future post you will see higher powers.


0

      yonce

1

      ce

2

      ome

3

      eyi

4

      nahui

5

      macuilli

6

      chicuace

7

      chicome

8

      chicueyi

9

      chiucnahui

10

      mahtlactli

11

      mahtlactli-huan-ce

12

      mahtlactli-huan-ome

13

      mahtlactli-huan-eyi

14

      mahtlactli-huan-nahui

15

      caxtolli

16

      caxtolli-huan-ce

17

      caxtolli-huan-ome

18

      caxtolli-huan-eyi

19

      caxtolli-huan-nahui

20

      cempohualli

 

Colors – Colores

Again, the pronunciations and conventions contained in this section were done in the style of la Huasteca Veracruzana, which might vary starkly with other dialects in this particular subject.


Red/Rojo

      chichiltic

Purple/Morado

      camohtic

Brown/ Café

      cafentic

Blue/Azul

      azultic

Transparent/Transparente

      atzalantic

Orange/Anaranjado

      achilcoz

Black/Negro

      yayahuic

Green/Verde

      xoxoctic

Grey/Gris

      tenextic

Multicolor

      cuicuiltic

Pink/Rosa

      cuahuencho

Yellow/Amarillo

      coztic

Beige

      chocoxtic

White/Blanco

      chipahuac

 

Nahuatl Naman

Nahuatl Naman

Wanted to share that I, along with a team of engineers and a Macehualli woman, will be creating an application for the Android Operating System. We are hoping to be done with the application, “Nahuatl Naman” early in 2015. The app will be free for download on the Google Play Store.

Nahuatl Naman = Nahuatl Today and will be a useful tool for classrooms or individuals that seek to learn the Nahuatl language.

 

 

More updates will be released as they become available.

Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples and Extractive Industries Across the Americas – 2/1/2013 at the University of Arizona

Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples and Extractive Industries Across the Americas – 2/1/2013 at the University of Arizona

Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples and Extractive Industries

   Across the Americas

University of Arizona, Center for Latin American Studies Human Rights Initiative

                                   and                                                    

Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program, Rogers College of Law

Friday, February 1, 2013

8:30am – 6pm

Arizona Historical Society

949 E. 2nd Street

The objective of this one day conference is to bring to the fore a range of issues and concerns with regard to natural resource extraction on indigenous lands across the Americas. Drawing on a human rights framework the conference participants examine some of the multiple, complex responses by indigenous peoples to the social, juridical and environmental dimensions of extraction. Recent examples from Chile to Mesoamerica to the United States, Canada and the Russian Far North illustrate the timeliness of such an examination.

 

The conference intends to facilitate a meaningful exchange of ideas and practices among social science and legal scholars, activists and between the university and the community at large. We broaden our scope geographically to open a discussion about the commonalities and contradictions that ordinary indigenous people face on their homelands. The Center for Latin American Studies will interview and film with each participant at the conference about their work. These five minute video clips will be made available on their UA LAS website.

 

Provisional Program

 

8:00 coffee

 

8:30 Yaqui Pascua opening ceremony( not confirmed)

 

8:45 Dean JP Jones, College of Social and Behavioral Science – Welcome

9:00 Professor Linda Green, Director, Center for Latin American Studies, Associate Professor of Anthropology – opening remarks, moderator

 

KeyNote

9:15  Dr. Salvador Aquino, anthropologist, CIESAS, Pacifico Sur,  Cuidad de  Oaxaca, Mexico  “Si a la vida, no a la mineria: Large scale mining exploitation and the challenges confronting indigenous peoples in Mexico”

 

10:15 coffee break

 

Panel

10:30 Professor Benadict Colombi, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, American Indian Studies, UA, “Kamchatka: Mapping Indigenous Cartographies and Extractive Industries”

11:00 Professor Dana Powell, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Appalachian State University  “Extractive Industries have productive effects: Energy activism on the Dine Nation”

11:30 Mr. Manuel Prieto, PhD student, School of Geography and Development, UA “The Chilean Water Reforms: Mining and Dispossession of the Atacameno People”

12:00 Mr. Cory Schott, PhD candidate, Dept. of History, UA “Colonial Histories of Indigenous Peoples and Extractive Industries in the Americas

12:15 Mr. Sebastian Quinac, “Reporting from the “Encouentro del Pueblos de MesoAmerica “, Sierra de Oaxaca, January 2013

 

12:30 Discussion

 

12:45-1:30 lunch hosted by LAS and IPLPP

 

1:30 Professor Robert A.Williams, Jr., E. Thomas Sullivan Professor of Law and American Indian Studies,  Faculty Co-Chair, Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program,UA- “Indigenous Peoples’ Human Rights to Ancestral Lands in Historical and Contemporary Perspective:Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group v. Canada”

2:30 Professor James Hopkins, Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program, UA, “Rio Yaqui Land and Water Rights and the Agro-Chem Industrial Complex”

3:00  Ms. Seanna Howard, Staff Attorney, Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program—“Maya Community of Southern Belize and Western Shoshone: Indigenous Peoples and the Inter-American Human Rights System”

3:30 “Arizona Tribes, Extractive Industries and Indigenous Human Rights”- (speaker TBA)

4:00

Mr. Austin Nunez, Chairman, San Xavier District, Tohono O’odham Nation—Mining, Water and O’odham lands (not confirmed)

Mr. Vernon Masayesva, Founder and Director of The Black Mesa Trust and former Tribal Chairman of The Hopi Nation—coal mining, water and Hopi lands (not confirmed)

 

4:30 Discussion

 

5:30-6:15 Closing Ceremony and Performance – Institute for Latin American Studies Leaders, cultural exchange from Bolivia, Paraguay and Peru.

 

Co- sponsors: American Indian Studies, Institute for the Environment, Confluence Center, Department of History, School of Anthropology, School of Geography and Development

 

Primer Congreso Internacional – Los Pueblos Indigenas de America Latina –CFP

Primer Congreso Internacional – Los Pueblos Indigenas de America Latina –CFP

*Los pueblos indígenas de América Latina, siglos XIX-XXI.*

*Avances, perspectivas y retos*

* *

La Academia Mexicana de Ciencias, el Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios
Superiores en Antropología Social, el Colegio de Etnólogos y Antropólogos
Sociales, A.C., El Colegio de Michoacán, A.C., El Colegio de Sonora, El
Colegio Mexiquense, A.C., el H. Ayuntamiento de Oaxaca de Juárez, el
Instituto Cultural Oaxaca, el Teatro Macedonio Alcalá, The Institute for
The Study of the Americas (the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill), The Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies (the
University of Texas at Austin), la Universidad Autónoma “Benito Juárez” de
Oaxaca, la Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, la Universidad de Buenos
Aires, la Universidad de Cartagena, La Universidad de La Frontera, la
Universidade Federal Fluminense y la Universidad Nacional de La Pampa.

convocan

al *Primer Congreso Internacional* *“Los pueblos indígenas de América
Latina, siglos XIX-XXI. Avances, perspectivas y retos”*, que se realizará
del 28 al 31 de octubre de 2013 y que tendrá como sede el Instituto
Cultural Oaxaca en la ciudad de Oaxaca, México.

*
*

*1ª. CIRCULAR*

*CONVOCATORIA para presentar propuestas de simposios*

Se convoca a presentar simposios para el *Primer Congreso Internacional* *“Los
pueblos indígenas de América Latina, siglos XIX-XXI. Avances, perspectivas
y retos”*, a celebrarse del 28 al 31 de octubre del 2013 en la ciudad de
Oaxaca, México.

El describir y entender al “otro” ha sido un objetivo constante durante más
de 500 años; sin embargo, no es lo mismo, la concepción que se pudo tener
de y sobre lo indígena durante el siglo XVI y XVII a la que se construyó en
el siglo XVIII, la que se plasmó en el siglo XIX y a la que se reconstruyó
durante los siglos XX y XXI; sin embargo, los análisis diacrónicos y
comparativos nos acercan al análisis de concepciones que permiten entender
los procesos históricos y contemporáneos. Las visiones que sobre el pasado
se tienen divergen y en mucho llegan a ser contradictorias, no solamente
para los estudiosos de ahora sino para los propios actores del momento; sin
embargo, parecería que la meta puede ser la misma, esto es, entender y
explicar sociedades, que desde la perspectiva de las diversas disciplinas
de la historia, etnohistoria, antropología y ciencias afines son una parte
importante del engranaje social. Sin duda, el contar con un análisis de una
parte de las sociedades, en este caso los indígenas, puede causar problemas
de comprensión de ese pasado, presente y futuro, ya que faltarían
componentes sociales que en mucho influyen y se ven influidos en su
interacción con los pueblos indios, como por ejemplo, los funcionarios
civiles, la Iglesia, los propietarios privados, el ejército, el Estado
republicano, etcétera, o en términos socio-étnicos, como negros, mulatos,
mestizos, blancos, aspectos que no soslayan la importancia de analizar de
una manera objetiva el acontecer de los pueblos indígenas, así como las
propuestas que de ellos emergen hacia las sociedades mayores.

Consideramos importante realizar un análisis en torno al papel (político,
económico, social, cultural) que han tenido las sociedades que se fueron
conformando después de la independencia política de los diversos
virreinatos y capitanías de la América española, pasando por los diversos
republicanismos latinoamericanos, la conformación de sociedades
multiculturales hasta las demandas de las diversas organizaciones e
intelectuales indígenas que conforman un amplio debate en la actualidad
sobre el acontecer de los pueblos indígenas.

* Convocatoria a presentar simposios*

Las temáticas en las que se agruparán los simposios presentados en el
Congreso son las siguientes:

– Movimientos sociales y resistencia

– Educación

– Estudios en torno al poscolonialismo

– Tierras

– Territorialidades

– Identidades

– Indigenismo

– Multiculturalismo

– Interculturalidad

– Visiones sobre ciudadanía

– Recursos naturales

– Migración

– Género

1. Propuesta de Simposio

a) Esta primera etapa abre la convocatoria a presentar simposios con
un máximo de cinco participantes, incluyendo al coordinador.

Posteriormente, se convocará a la presentación de trabajos independientes
que puedan ser incluidos en los simposios aprobados por el Comité
Organizador.

b) Los coordinadores de cada simposio serán los responsables de
conformar y presentar la propuesta y, posteriormente, escoger a los otros
cinco integrantes a partir de la convocatoria abierta a todos los
interesados.

c) Cada propuesta de simposio deberá registrarse en la página web
www.congresopueblosindigenas.org y estará abierta a partir de su
publicación *22 de octubre de 2012 * al *1 de febrero de 2013*.

d) Quien proponga el simposio recibirá un correo electrónico en el que
se le acusa de recibido.


1. Aprobación de simposios

a) Las propuestas de simposios serán revisadas por un Comité
Académico conformado por especialistas miembros de las instituciones
co-organizadoras, quienes a partir de las temáticas propuestas aprobarán
los simposios bajo criterios relacionados con la argumentación o la
sustentación de la temática; coherencia en el desarrollo de las ideas;
claridad en la presentación; y, pertinencia del contenido.

b) La publicación de los simposios aprobados se darán a conocer en la
página web www.congresopueblosindigenas.org del congreso el *1 de marzo de
2013*. La convocatoria abierta a presentar trabajos para los simposios
aprobados por el Comité Organizador se podrá realizar a partir de la
publicación hasta el* 30 de junio de 2013*. Sus decisiones serán
inapelables.

Atentamente

El Comité Organizador
https://www.facebook.com/CIPIAL
congreso.pueblos.indigenas@gmail.com