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Modoc Language

Spoken by the Modoc Tribe (moowatdal'knii)
Thanks to Carolyn Eggsman of the Klamath Tribe for helping me with this language.


waq lis ?i maqlaqs ɢeeni

[wʌq lis ʔi ˈmʌqlʌqs ˈqæːni]          (wuck leece 'ee, MUCK-lucks GA-nee?)

 

  • waq lis ?i – how are you?
  • maqlaqs ɢeeni – Indian country (Oklahoma)

 


©2004 Benjamin Bruce. Some Rights Reserved.

 

 

qdoocok sitk qcool hetɢi. coy nis sa slaystga walc'a. coy hok hewook ciW ciW
coy ni q'liqditgoolapga. coy moo ?an wosaa.

'The stars fell like rain. And they covered me with a mat. And on falling into the water [they made a sound] "ciW ciW!"
And I peeked out from under. And I was very much afraid.'


Source: Mithun, Marianne. The Languages of Native North America. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. Accessed at the Rosetta Project.

Modoc-Klamath alphabet

Note: This is the orthography currently used by the Klamath Tribes' language program. The language is extinct in Oklahoma.

Short vowels

i e o a
[ɪ, i] [ɛ] [o] [ʌ]

Long vowels

ii ee oo aa
[iː] [æː] [oː] [aː]

Diphthongs

ay aw ey ew oy
[aj] [aw] [ɛj] [æw] [oj]

Unaspirated stop consonants

b d j g ɢ
[b, p] [d, t] [ʤ, ʧ] [g, k] [ɢ, q]

Aspirated stop consonants

p t c k q
[pʰ] [tʰ] [ʧʰ] [kʰ] [qʰ]

Ejectives

p' t' c' k' q'
[pʼ] [tʼ] [ʧʼ] [kʼ] [qʼ]

Glottal stop

?
[ʔ]

Voiced continuants

m n l w y
[m] [n] [l] [w] [j]

Glottalized continuants

m' n' l' w' y'
[mʼ] [nʼ] [lʼ] [wʼ] [jʼ]

Voiceless continuants

M N L W Y
[m̥] [n̥] [l̥] [w̥] [j̥]

Fricatives

s s? h
[s] [sʔ] [h]

Notes

  • The Aspriated stop consonants are strongly aspirated word-initially.
  • The Unaspriated stop consonants are plain initially but voiced between voiced segments.
  • s is normally [s], but becomes [z] when between two vowels.
  • Stress is placed on the last long vowel of a word. If there are no long vowels, it is placed on the penult (second-to-last syllable) if that syllable is closed (ending with a consonant). If the last two syllables are open (ending in a vowel), the stress is placed on the third syllable from the end (antepenult). Examplesː cat'ááwipga ('is sitting in the sun'), gatbámbli ('returns home'), c'áw'iga ('is crazy')

 


Resourcesː

  • Mithun, Marianne. The Languages of Native North America. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. Accessed at the Rosetta Project.
  • "waq dal ?i gee ?ewksiknii ?elɢank." Internet: <http://www.klamathtribes.org/language.htm>
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