The draga language is written with 25 characters of the Roman alphabet, plus the ", ' and acute accent symbols. The symbol : is used to mark the end of a sentence.
|f, l, m, s, t, w, and y are pronounced pretty much as in English. But 't' is always pronounced as in "top" (i.e. followed by a puff of air), and never as in "stop".|
|a||æ||A||awo||similar to "a" in "cat"|
|e||ə||UH||eña||similar to "a" in "about"|
|i||i||EE||hiña||similar to "ea" in "eat"|
|o||U||OO||hoña||similar to "oo" in "look"|
|ou||ɔw||AW||tyouñ||Like the "o" in "on", but round your lips considerably, and say at a low pitch.|
|r||ɚ||UR||Qhrya||similar to "ur" in "purse", always a vowel|
|Easy to pronounce:|
|h||ʜ||H||halui||Similar to 'h'|
|j||tz||TZ||jagi||"tz" in "hot_zone"|
|x||ʃ||SH||xapo||"sh" in ship|
|ñ||ɲ||NY||ñagwa||"ni" in onion|
|kw||kw||KW||kweiañ||"qu" in aqua|
|ky||kj||KY||kyeañ||"ky" in junkyard|
|g||ɦ||GH||jaga||Like an 'h', but using your vocal cords (i.e. voiced)|
|'||ʔ||'||o'ui||Glottal stop. Pronounced like the break in "uh-oh", i.e. stopping the flow of air at your throat|
|Aspirated vs. unaspirated stops:|
|c||c||CH||ciw||Similar to "tch" in "butcher"|
|ch||ch||CHH||chíaeq||Similar to "ch_h" in "beach head"|
|p||p||P||pawa||Like the "p" in spill, or "pp" in pepper|
|ph||ph||PH||phawui||Like the "p" in pan (notice the puff of air)|
|q||q||Q||quiyo||Similar to "k" in "skip", but with the back of the tounge further back towards the throat|
|qh||qh||QH||qhowa||draqa 'Q' above, but with the "puff of air" (i.e. aspiration)|
|Varieties of 't':|
|d||t_||TH||dae||Like a "t", but pronounced with the tip of the tounge placed between the teeth, á la English "th".|
|t'||tʔ||T?||t'ae||Similar to the "t" in stop, but at the same time blocking the flow of air by closing off the back of your throat, i.e. glottal stop (together with the "t")|
|ty||tj||TY||tyou||Similar to the "t" in stop, but at the same time pronouncing "y".|
|b||ɓ||B!||beiwor||Like 'b', but sucking the air inward rather than outwards|
|z||!||Z!||zeqa||The sound of 'sucking your teeth, i.e. Like 't', but sucking the air inward rather than outwards'|
|klq||ǁ||Q!||klqakwo||The sound of clicking your tongue against the side of your teeth.|
|p"||ʙ˚||P"||p"poa||Bilabial trill, (raspberry), i.e. Hold lips in the position for "p", and blow through them, allowing them to flap together|
|t"||r˚||T"||t"ui||Like Spanish 'rr' but without using your voicebox, Hold tongue in the position for "t", and blow through the tip,|
|q"||ʀ˚||Q"||q"aña||Like gargling without using your voicebox, Hold tongue in the position for draga "q", and blow across the back of the tongue .|
|qhg||qʀ˚||QQ"||qhgagi||Q + Q" above.|
Draqa has 6 vowels: a, e, i, o, ou and r.
The vowels e, ou, and r are always pronounced with a little stress.
The vowels a, i, and o can be pronounced with a normal pitch, or with a high pitch. The acute accent is used to represent the high pitch: á í ú. *Note: The high pitch is always part of a pitch contour, i.e. the tone is either rising or falling. A simple high pitched vowel has a falling pitch contour, i.e. the 'ú' in 'mú' is pronounced with a falling tone. The word "ía' is also proncounced with a falling tone. However, the 'ií' in 'pií' is pronounced with a rising tone.
The vowels a, i, and o might also be rhoticized:
|ar / ár||[ær]||"ar" / "AR"|
|ir / ír||[ir]||"eer" / "EER"|
Certain vowel combinations have irregular spellings:
Other possible vowel combinations inlcude:
|ie / íe||[iə]||"ee-uh"|
|ui / úi / uí||[Ui]||"oo-ee"|
|ái / aí||[æi]||"a-ee"|
|ía / iá||[iæ]||"ee-a"|
|ío / iú||[iO]/[iU]||"ee-oo"|
Syllables and Words
Examples of some draga words:
*Note: High tone is represented here by ` for IPA, and by CAPITALIZATION (vowels) in the Gloss.
A Basic Interaction:
ía and mú:
These two words, introduced in the previous lesson, are known as "Speech Act Particles". Every draga sentence begins with one or more of these particles, which indicate what type of information you are providing, and how you know whether it is true/useful or not.
You may have noticed in the sentences above: ía lyañatyíar and mú lyañatyíar - that the word lyañatyíar means "at home".
The word lyañatyíar is made up of two parts:
The first part lyaña is a Root, which is the name for the content words of the draga language. draga Roots can be translated as nouns, verbs, adjectives or adverbs in English depending on context. The only other part of speech in draga is the Particle.
-tyíar is known as a Locative Particle, used to indicate location, direction or motion. The hyphen (-) in front of -tyíar indicates that the word cannot stand alone, and must be joined to the end of another word, typically a Root.
The Locative Particles are extremely important in speaking draga. The locative metaphor is used with great flexibility:
So, the Locative suffixes can be summed up:
|-tyíar||"At, In, On"||-yir||"Towards, To"||-pyir||"(Successfully) To"||-swor||"Unsuccessfully toward"||-tyui||"Originating from, Coming from"||-fir||"In the (same) general direction of"||-teyou||"Away from, Off of, Out of, Generally avoiding"|
* See if you can translates the following sentences. You should be thoroughly familiar with the material in Lessons I - IV before you continue:
Go on to Lesson V