A SHORT GRAMMAR
UN .VERITY OF
A SHORT GRAMMAR
THE BOARD OF FOREIGN MISSIONS
OF THE UNITED PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF N. A.
DIETRICH REIMER (ERNST VOHSEN) BERLIN
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
PRINTED ttY J. J. Al-'CJl'STlN, (iLLCKSTADT
The Shilluk country is situated in the Anglo -
Egyptian Sudan ; it extends along the west bank
of the White Nile from Kaka in the north to
Lake No in the south; besides this there are
several Shilluk villages along the banks of the
lower Sobat, chiefly on the northern side.
This little book is an epitome of my researches
in the Shilluk language made during a stay in
the Shilluk country and in Khartoum from August
1910 to the end of October 1910. It is based
on a larger collection of folklore, which will be
edited within a few months, together with a
grammar and dictionary.
The present grammar is intended solely as a
practical guide to the Shilluk language, and for
this reason I have ^tried to adapt it to the needs
of the Europeans and Americans living among
this people. The main difficulties in acquiring a
knowledge of the language are pronunciation and
intonation; it is of the greatest importance that
the student should pay careful attention to these
two points, as otherwise misunderstandings are
unavoidable. I have therefore thought it necessary,
to represent the sounds and the intonation as
carefully and exactly as possible. The many
diacritical dots and accents may not look very
encouraging to the reader, but I earnestly beg of
him, not to let them deter him from employing
the book: once one is accustomed to them, they
are not so bad as they may at first appear, and
they are indispensable. In order to obtain both-
the right pronunciation and intonation, the help
of an intelligent native should always be at hand.
The orthography adopted is a compromise
between the one already in use among the mis-
sionaries, and the phonetic writing.
The object of this book made it impossible,
to treat the language exhaustively; indeed many
problems have not even been touched, as for
instance the position of the Shilluk among other
African languages, etymology, the ways of forming
words, the laws according to which the tones
change. I have purposely reserved these questions
for a more comprehensive grammar.
As to how this book should be employed,
I would add a few remarks : the quantity of vowels
is not so unchangeable as it is in some other
Sudan languages, frequently a vowel is long, when
standing in an unconnected word, and short when
in a connected word, that is a word spoken in
connection with other words. When a mute con-
sonant stands between two vowels, it is sometimes
extremely difficult to distinguish, whether it is
hard (voiceless) or soft. If the word is pronounced
very slowly - - which is, of course, not the natural
way of speaking the sound is hard, for instance ,
but if it is pronounced rapidly in a sentence,
a d ist heard. - - The verbs are mostly employed
in the past tense, the present is not heard nearly
so often; when being asked for a verb, the natives
will in almost all cases give the past tense.
In the vocabulary the tones of words are given
as completely as was possible. In those cases
where the tones of a word are not marked, I am
not frilly acquainted with them. The tones given
in the vocabulary are those which a word has,
when it is spoken separately, that is, when not
standing in a sentence. If in a diphthong only
the first vowel has an intonation-mark, the tone
of the second vowel is the same as that of the
first. - Words occurring in the text, but not in
the vocabulary, I am not able to satisfactorily
I am greatly obliged to Mr. L. Hamilton of the
School for Oriental Languages, Berlin, for revising
the English text of this work.
1. The Consonants.
b as in English.
ch is almost, but not quite the same sound as in
church, child. The sound is articulated
further back in the nrouth.
d as in English.
d is an interdental d; put the tongue between the
teeth-rows, so that it is visible from without
between the teeth, then press it lightly against
the upper teeth, and pronounce a d.
/ as in English.
g always hard, as in garden, gold, never as in
h occurs only in some exclamations; it is sounded
a little stronger than the English h in "he".
Y might be called a fricative g; it is in the same
relation to g, as v is to b. It is somewhat
similar to the Arabic Ghain, but it is much
softer, and its place of articulation does not
lie so far back in the throat as that of Ghain.
We s term an n , Shilluk-English.
j is almost, but not quite the same sound as the
English ] in jest, just. It is articulated a
little further back in the mouth, and there-
fore sounds "thinner".
k I m n are as in English. But /, when standing
at the end of a word, is "rolled", almost
as the English pronounce the 11 in well.
n is like n in canon, or like Italian and French
gn in signore, seigneur. Its pronunciation
is somewhat difficult, if it stands at the end
of a word; here sometimes foreigners pro-
nounce n instead of n. This can easily be
avoided by adding the so-called 'helping
vowel' e (see below) to the n ; instead of
saying leii "war", say lene.
n is an interdental n, pronounced by putting the
tongue between the teeth, as in d.
n is like ng in "sing", "singer". Its pronunciation
is only difficult at the beginning of a word.
Divide : si-nger, and pronounce nger only.
This ng is exactly the sound of n.
p is as in English.
r is formed with the tongue's end. It is not
rolled, but pronounced very slightly, so that
often, chiefly between two vowels, ; and
d are hardly distinguishable.
6-A is formed a little further back in the mouth
than the English sh. It is nearly the same
sound as the German ch in "ich", "dich".
s is the sharp th as in thing, thorough.
t is as in English.
t is the interdental t; it is formed just in the
same way as d, only the tongue is pressed
more tightly against the upper teeth, and
the sound is voiceless.
w as in English.
y as in English yes, yonder; it is never a vowel
sound as in spy.
z is the soft th as in these, them.
2. System of the Consonants.
Velars . . .
Palatals . .
Labials . .
3. The Vowels.
The quality of vowels is marked by signs
below the letters; the quantity is marked by signs
above the letters. Long vowels are marked by a
line, thus : a = long a. All vowels which have
no mark above, are short.
a is the pure "Italian" a, as the French, Italian
arid German short a, almost like the English
a in lad, hat. But the English sound is
rather in the middle between a and e 9 where-
as the Shilluk a is purer, the mouth being
opened wider than in the formation of the
English a. In certain cases, however, the
Shilluk a has also a tendency towards the e
(in phonetic writing this sound would be a);
these cases will be indicated. Examples of
the pure Shilluk a: kal "fence", mak "catch!"
anan "now", jal "man",
a is a sound between a and o, almost like the
English u in but. Ex.: gat "river-side".
o like o in pot, hot; e. g. : go "him", got "court",
nol "cut". If o stands at the end of poly-
syllabic words, it is pronunced very faintly,
so that often an e is merely heard. But
if one listens carefully, and if one asks the
natives to pronounce such a word a second
time, the o is distinctly heard. It is the
end-vowel of many nouns and of the verb
in the present tense.
e as e in let, went, well; but the sound is a little
broader, somewhat more tending towards a.
e. g. : I'et "go", let "hot", bet "fish-spear".
e as a in haste, face, but shorter. Ex.: yecli middle.
e is a very short, almost voiceless sound, resem-
bling that of a in "idea". It is the so-called
'helping vowel'. The short e does not occur
at the end of a word, whereas e very often
finishes a word. Therefore, wherever e
occurs at the end of a word, e is always
given instead of e. Only where e stands
in the middle of a word, it is marked e;
e. g.: nek "killed".
like i in hit, fit; e. g. : kinau thus, ni "to use to",
i like ee in keen, e in he, but shorter. In an
orthography not strictly scientific both i and
i may be rendered by the same letter: i.
o like o in note, mote, but shorter, and narrower;
it tends somewhat towards u; e. g. : lot "club".
u like u in "put". Ex.: l>u "to have not" chuni
u like oo in root, but shorter. Ex. : kudo to be
silent, budo to lie down. As i and i, so
u and u too may be marked by the same
4. System of the Vowels.
o . e
u e i .
5, Long Vowels.
All vowels, including e, may be long,
a as a in father; mayo to catch.
a between a and o; e. g. : fado to fall.
as aw in law, awe: gogo to work.
0: fero people neno much.
e: a in save, bale; e. g. : ye jo to sweep.
e: yet roads.
I: dim bowels.
1 as ee in feel, heel; e. g. : rmo to run.
as o in mole, but narrower. Ex. : clidti it is
u : nttti not yet.
u as oo in cool, fool. Ex.: riimo to think.
ai as y in spy.
an as ow in fowl.
01 as oi in oil.
ei almost as in eight, but the i is heard more
distinctly than in English. Ex.: wei to let.
The sounds ch, j, sli and n, when follow-
ing a vowel, generally have a slight i sound
before them, which combines with the
preceding vowel to a diphthong. This i
sound is, however, not expressed in writing,
because 1. it occurs regularly before the
said consonants, and 2. some individuals
pronounce it so slightly, that in some cases
one may doubt, whether it really exists. -
Thus pack "home" is to be pronounced
patch, goch "beaten" : goich, bano "to refuse" :
Combinations of Semivowel and Vowel
are very frequent. In these cases w and y are to
be pronounced as a very short, non-syllabic u
and i. kwop "talk" almost as kuop, akyd "one"
7. Interchange of Sounds.
Some sounds may be interchanged at will,
one individual preferring the one, another the
other consonant; often the same individual in the
same words now uses the one, a little while later
the other consonant. These consonants are
cli and sh
t and s
d and z
p and /.
Until now both cli and sh, p and / have
been written by the missionaries, but for t and 5
only t has been used, for d and z only d; I shall
deviate from this rule, by using ch and p to render
both sounds, reserving sh and / for those cases,
where the natives actually prefer them. For t
and s I write only t, for d and z only d.
Change of Consonants.
The consonants k t t p ch, when standing at the
end of a ivqrd, can be pronounced in two ways.
They are voiceless, that is a real k t t p cli, if
1. the word stands alone or at the end of a
sentence; 2. if it is followed by a voiceless
consonant. They are voiced, that is, they are
to be pronounced g d d b j, 1. if they are
followed by a voiced consonant; 2. if they are
followed by a vowel. But they are always written
voiceless: k t t p ch. (One exception to this rule
see below). Final ch, if followed by a consonant,
often softens into y: wich head, wiy jal the head
of the man.
8. The Intonation.
The intonation is an important and essential
element in the Shilluk-language. It is not to be
confounded with the accentuation, which solely
means the stress or strength laid on a particular
syllable or word. Intonation means exclusively
the highness or lowness of a syllable compared
with other syllables.
In Shilluk each syllable has its own tone,
which, as a rule, is not altered, or, if so, only
according to fixed laws.
A word is not formed by consonants and vowels
only, but by consonants, vowels and tones. The
language cannot be studied without close attention
to the intonation. Many ' words and forms of
words are distinguished only by different tones.
There are three different tones in the Shilluk
language : a high tone, marked thus : d, a low
tone : , and a middle tone : a. Many syllables
have two tones, the High and the Low; thus we
have these combinations : a rising or low-high
tone a, and a falling or high-low tone : a.
Combinations between the high and middle,
and the low and middle tone are also not uri-
frequent; but as they are not essential for the
practical use of the language, they are not treated
The pronunciation of the tone and the relation
of the tones to each other is best acquired by
hearing them from the natives. They cannot be
taught by the written word. Therefore I shall
give several examples of each tone, which the
student should let a native pronounce repeatedly
so long till he is not only able to hear the
differences, but to imitate them to the satisfaction
of the native.
9. Examples for the Intonation.
High tone: len war, fen ground; yfi kb I say;
yi re why you ? ydn I, won we, #e'ft they, oboi
foam, men an this one.
Low tone: tiro people, e kb he says, e mMb
it is sweet, yi re gwal why are you thin? dean
cow, anan now.
Middle tone: is not so easily distinguished,
and may be confounded with the high tone.
Examples: otwon "cock", the second tone is a
little lower than the first one, yet it is not the
Rising tone: Dak (a descendant of Nikan),
fuk a water-pot, ge ben all of them; otwon the
hyena. This last example is instructive; the
sounds are the same as in the word for "cock" ;
only in "cock" the last syllable has a middle tone,
and here it has the rising tone.
Falling tone. tSk "is absent", tek "is hard",
nok is little.
The rising and the falling tone generally
occur on syllables with a long vowel, but they
may occur on short syllables as well, just the
falling tone often does so. In this case the high
tone is prevalent, but just before the sound is
stopped, the tone is lowered.
Changes of tones are frequent, but are not
treated here ; many may be observed in the
sentences and texts.
The consonants m and n may form a syllable,
thus taking the function of a vowel. Accordingly
they can also have their own tone, for example:
ram thighs; a is high, but m low; gyen fowls.
10. The Accentuation,
that is the emphasis laid on a syllable or a word,
is not of such importance as it is in European
languages, chiefly for the simple reason that most of
the words are monosyllabic. Note the following
rule : the stress does not lie on the vowel be-
ginning or ending a word, except where the last
vowel is an independent element, as: a bind "I
came", here the final "a" means "I" ; in this case
the ending vowel has its own accent.
11. The Plural of NOUDS.
The Shilluk language has different ways
of forming the plural of nouns. The means by
which the plural is distinguished from the singular,
are enumerated bejow. In most cases not one,
but more of these means are employed to form the
plural, for instance okot plural bkfit "bell" : 1. the
second vowel has become long, 2. the high tone
of the first syllable has become low, 3. the high
tone of the second syllable has become falling.
12. There are no rules according to which
the nouns may be divided into classes, each of
which has a common form of the plural. Just
as in some other languages, for intance in German
the plural of each noun has to be learned sepa-
rately. But mark : o is an ending of the singular
only, arid i is an ending of the plural.
Means of Forming the Plural.
1. Change of Vowel-quantity.
ram-ram thigh wdro-war shoe
tyvlo-tyel foot rejo-rech fish
gy^no-gyeh hen okot-bkot bell
lijo-lek tooth bkiubk-bkivak a small
tanb-tdm temples goose
nhU-nali python brbk-brbk sin
nwech-nwech a large Wizard bgwol-bgivol a black bird.
2. Change of Vowel-quality.
ogwdl-ogweli frog bat-bat arm
fal-fet spoon odek-udiki mat
jor-jor bug yat-yen tree
chun-chon knee yech-yet belly
yo-yvt way nivech-nwEch a large li-
wich-ivat head zard.
3. Change of tone.
yit-ylt ear yQ-yty wa j
ton-ton spear chun-chon knee
okwek-bkicak a goose tijWo-tyel foot
ogicok-og^Td fox gwbk-gubk dog
owet-owet a niat gy&nb-gy&k hen.
bfjivaro-oywerl blue heron
4. Dropping the final o.
fdlo-fal knife ivmo-wm bird
gy%nb-ffy6h hen tono-ton egg
byvlo-byel dura givElb-givel ring.
5. Affixing z.
odek-udikl a mat fmb-flnl cheek
kwom-kiiomi chair tano-tdm temples.
6. Singular w becomes ?t in plural.
gwbk-yubk dog kivom-kuonn chair.
7. The combination of wo in singular becomes o
8. Other changes.
dean-dok cow rlt-ror king
9. Different words for singular and plural.
jalo (jal)-chwou man, male
13. The Crenetire of Nouns.
The genetive simply follows the noun deter-
mined by it.
wot house ; wot jago house of the chief
kivop talk; ktvop obwbn talk of the stranger
attp bag; a&p nate ivelo bag of the traveller
okok blossom; okok y an eni the blossom of this tree.
If a noun ending in jo, do or go is followed
by a genetive, o is dropped, and ; turns into n,
d into n, g into n:
jago chief; jari fote icon the chief of our country
afoajo rabbit; afoan nal fan the rabbit of the child.
For more about these changes see below.
In some cases the final ch is dropped before
a genetive :
pack village; pa rit village of the king.
In the plural almost always an e (e) is added
to the noun preceding a genetive.
gwok dog pi. gubk; gubke jal eni the dogs of this man
Ujo tooth pi. lek; leke lyech teeth of the elephant
yet neck pi. yiet; yiete ivotbn the necks of the children
yit ear pi. i/lt; yite kyen ears of the horse
ate_p bag pi. utep; atepe nate icelo the bags of the
afoajo rabbit pi. afoachl; afoache jal mi the rabbits
of this man
jago chief ipl. jak ; jake fote icon the chiefs our country
bkok blossom pi. bkbk: okdke yan mi the blossoms
of this tree.
The Objective Case.
14, The direct object or accusative follows
the verb : a cham by el he ate dura. Sometimes
the particle ki is added: a cham ki by el he ate
The indirect object or dative generally pre-
cedes the direct object ; in this case the latter is
almost always introduced by ki:
a iv^ki jdl eni ki by el he gave this man
But in very many, probably in most cases
the direct and the indirect object are not expressed
at all, the passive voice being used instead : "I
saw him" is expressed by "he was seen by me" 5
"he gave the child milk" by "the child was given
milk by him". - - On the passive voice see below.
15. The language has no grammatical, but
only a natural gender, which is expressed in the
There are two ways of expressing the natural
a. by different words.
chwou man ddcho woman
wat bull dean cow
onwok male sheep or goat dyel female goat.
b. by adding otwon for the male, mat for the
female gender. [lion
nh btwon male lion nu mat or mat nu female
tbni nu male lions mati nu female lions
kyen a twon male horse kyen a mat female horse
pi. kiien a tbn kuen a mat
L t7 ^ f\ <J f\
twon omoro male mat omoro female roan
pi. tbn omoro mat omoro. [antelope
The deminutive is expressed by prefixing na
"child" : na dean a small, young cow, na kyen a
The Personal Pronoun.
16. Absolute Form.
This form does not stand immediately before
a verb, it is used when the person is to be
emphasized, therefore it might be called the
emphatic form. It is employed for the subjective
and objective form alike : I and me, thou and
ydn I won we
yin thou wun you
in (yen) he gen they.
gon occurs frequently as objective, but seldom as
This form may be emphasized by adding d:
ydnd, yind, end. This has the meaning of "I am",
"it is I" : yind jwok "thou God", "oh God" ; ma
Bacliodo "that is Fashoda".
17. Connected Form, standing before the verb.
This form is generally used as the subject
?/d 1 wd, wo we
yi, them wu you
f' (sometimes <f) and ye are used promiscuously,
<70 as subjective pronoun is not frequent.
18. Objective Form; stem chwol to call.
With more emphasis:
d chwold he called me a chwold ydn
a chwoll he called thee a chwold yin
d chwole he called him a chwold en, gon
d chwoll icon he called us a chwold won
d c hwo II w u n h e c all e d y o u a chwo Id iv u n
d chwoll (/en he called them a chwold gen.
19. Possessive Form; wot house pi. wodi.
ivodd my house wotd my houses
wod'i thy house wbti thy houses
wode his house ivote his houses
wot ') won our house wote icon our houses
wot ] ) wun your house wote wun your houses
icot ] ) yen their house wote gen their houses.
ywbk dog pi. giibk.
gwbgd my dog guokd my dogs
</t#o</i thy dog gudkl thy dogs
givbge his dog giloke his dogs
gwbk*) won our dog guoke icon our dogs
gwok 2 ) wun your dog guoke wun your dogs
gw6k*) gen their dog guoke gen their dogs.
K the end consonant in the plural is mute, it is
1 ) this is to be pronounced d; see rule above.
2 ) this fc is to be pronounced g; see rule above.
Note the changes of the tone.
If a noun in the singular ending in jo, do,
or go is followed by a possessive pronoun, o is
dropped, and j becomes ri, d becomes n, g be-
jago chief ja'na my chief
jak chiefs jakd my chiefs
afoajo rabbit afoana my rabbit
afoachi rabbits afoachd my rabbits.
In some cases the possessive pronoun is prefixed
by r: ra my, ri thy etc. Before this r the final
consonant of the noun drops :
nal child nara my child
pack village para my village
pari thy village etc.
20. The Possessive Pronoun as a Substantive.
a. Singular of the thing possessed:
mea mine mei icon ours
mei thine mei wun yours
mt his mei gen theirs.
b. Plural of the thing possessed.
mogd mo won
mogi mo wun
rnoge mo gen.
Instead of "me", "gin" = "thing" may also
be taken: gina my thing = mine.
Note. The singular of the personal pronoun
is not unfrequently used instead of the plural of
the corresponding person.
21. Interrogative Pronouns.
ano what, which ? pi. ono ?
When these, as well as the demonstrative
pronouns, are combined with a noun in the sin-
gular, the final consonant, if mute, undergoes
certain changes, which are best shown in the
wot house: d won ano which house is it?
rit king: a ran ano which king is it?
yat tree: a yan ano which tree is it?
ogwok jackal: d ogwon ano which jackal is it?
atep bag: d a fern ano which bag is it?
lyech elephant d lyeji ano which elephant is it?
All other consonants remain unchanged :
gin thing d gin ano which thing (what) is it?
wodi houses, d wot ] ) ono which houses are they?
ror kings, d ror ono which kings are they?
yen trees, d yen fino which trees are they?
ogok jackals, d ogok 1 } fino which jackals are they?
afep bags, d aep ] ) ono which bags are they?
lyech elephants, d lyech 1 ) dno which elephants are
gik things, d gik } ) ano which things are they?
amen who ? pi. amok ?
amen a bl who has come?
amok 1 ) a bl who (pi.) came?
jal amen which man?
jok amok which men?
amSn a d wbrl yin who (is it that) sent you?
won an a wot men this house is house whose?
whose house is this?
ivot 1 ) ak a ivote mok whose houses are these?
ivon a which house?
ran a which king?
ogwon a which fox?
ogbki a which foxes?
22. Relative Pronouns.
a. Generally the relation is expressed by a,
') In the plural the final mutes are voiceless, that is a
real k ch t t pi
which is probably the same particle that forms
the past tense, and can, therefore, only be used
for the past.
jal d In auwa the man who came yesterday
wot d give won the house which was built by us
dean d neke yi tero the cow which was killed by
md who, which: jal md li the man who came
ken md l>en the time which comes.
mfrn an the one (which) :
ya fa die did men e lojb, yti die did men d tar I do
not want the one which is black, I want the
one which is white.
In a. and c. there is no relative pronoun, it
is in reality a simple sentence "the man came",
"the one is black" - - which serves at the same
time for expressing a relative sentence.
23. Demonstrative Pronouns.
There are several demonstrative pronouns,
marking the different distances between the speaker
and the object spoken of.
Singular: an this, eni that, aclia that over there.
Plural : ak, an or dgctk these, eni those, cicha
those over there.
To mark a distance very far away, they
use chine: over yonder.
Here the same changes in the final consonant
of the noun in the singular take place as in the
gwon an this dog g won eni that dog
gwon acJid that dog there
Wester mann, Shilluk-English. 2
gubk dogs ! )
gwok ak j , givok eni those yicok acha the
agak ] ^ there
jan an this chief j fin eni that chief jan acha the chief
jak ak these chiefs jak eni those jak ticket the
iv ot ak
two (tedo) people
Those ending in other consonants or in vowels
have no changes :
iv ot eni
') In the plural the final consonants if mute -
are to be pronounced voiceless, that is as real k ch t y.
ror ok these kings - - from ror
gin an this thing from gin
pi an this water from pi
len an this war from len.
There is another kind of demonstrative
pronoun, expressed merely by the change of the
final consonant described above. It has somewhat
the character of the English definite article. Its
use seems to be restricted to the nouns ending
in k t t p ch, go, ro (do) do, jo, for instance :
won this house (the house spoken of or just
ran this king (the one just mentioned).
The demonstrative pronoun standing for a
men an this one
mok ak these ones.
24. The Reflexive Pronoun.
It is formed with the help of re "body".
rea a tdtd ki kiveyo "my body gave I with wound" :
I wounded myself
rei a toti ki kweyo thou woundedst thyself
re a tote ki kweyo he wounded himself
rei won a tote won ki kweyo we wounded ourselves
rei wun a tote wun ki kweyo you wounded your-
rei gen a tote gen ki kweyo they wounded themselves
a neka re he killed himself
g& neka rei gen they killed themselves.
25. "I myself" etc. is expressed:
d gwoke yti ki rea "it was done, I with my body" :
I myself did it
d gwoke yi ki rei you yourself did it
d gwoke e kere ho himself did it
d gwoke wo ki rei won wo ourselves did it
d gwoke wu ki rei wiin you yourselves did it
d gwoke ge ki rei gen they themselves did it.
a gwoke ya keta I did it myself
a gwoke yi keti
a gwoke e ket,e
a gwoke ivo kfrte won
a gwoke wu kvte ivun
a gwoke ge kete gen.
This has also the meaning: I did it alone.
26. The Adjective.
a. The simple adjective connected with a noun.
yat tree, yan fen small tree, yan duon big tree
yen trees, yen fono small trees, yen ddno big trees
rejo fish, ren cliyek short fish
rechi, recli fishes, recla chyeko short fishes
yet neck, yen bar long neck
yeti necks, yeti baro long necks
lejo tooth, leji tar white tooth
lek teeth, leke tar white teeth
yit leaf, yin lei bitter leaf
yiti leaves, yiti bel bitter leaves
gyeno chicken, gy^no kwaro red chicken
gyen chickens, gyen kwaro red chickens.
In these connections the same changes take
place as in the demonstrative pronoun.
The examples given above show, that some
adjectives have a plural form distinguished from
the singular, but most of them have for the singular
and plural the same form.
All these combinations may have two meanings :
1 . attributive : a small tree, a large tree
2. predicative : the tree is small, the tree is large.
b. The adjective prefixed by md (often pro-
These are exclusively attributive. No con-
sonant-changes take place. - md is the relative
pronoun "which". The adjectives with md seem
to be more emphatic than those under a.
wot mdduon a big house
wot mddono big houses
rit inddoch a good king
ror mddoch good kings.
27. Many adjectives are used as verbs, as
such they generally have two forms 5 for instance :
dbno to become big, to grow up ; to be in the
process of becoming big
duon to be big (an accomplished state)
rviio to become bad, to act badly
rack to be bad
IEHO to become hot, to feel hot
let to be hot.
The means of comparing an object with
another are rather scanty, the people not feeling
the need of comparison as we do. They simply
say: this thing is big, and that one is not big.
The most common way of expressing a higher
degree is to lengthen the vowel, and at the same
time to raise the tone, Both are done to such a
degree, and with such great variation, that they
cannot be expressed in writing.
There are some other means of comparison,
which are, however, not much used:
ye da dqk mdfot dqk pyaro "he has cows surpassing
cows ten" : he has more than ten cows.
ji a tou, ge Jodq je ddek "people died, they sur-
passed people three" : more than three people
For more examples see the "short sentences".
29. The Numerals.
dkyel 1 pyaro wi dbikyel 16
dryau 2 pyaro wi dbiryau 17
ddek 3 pyaro wi dbidek 18
dnwen 4 py&ro wi dbmwen 19
dbich 5 pyar dryau 20
dbikyel 6 pyar wi ki dkyH 21
dbiryau 7 pyar wi ki dryau 22
dbidek 8 p^/dr aJeA; 30
dbmwen 9 pyar dnwen 40
pyarb 10 pydr a&fc/i 50
pyaro wi dkyel 11 p?/^ dbikyel 60
pyaro wi dryau 12 pz/dr dbiryau 70
pyaro wi ddek 13 p?/dr dbidek 80
pyaro wi dnwen 14 joydr dbmwen 90
pyaro wi dbich 15 p^d^ pj/dr 100.
For the connection of tens with units there
are different forms; besides the one given above
one can say:
pyaro wije da dkyel \
or : pyaro wi ki dkyU \ 11.
("ten, its head has one") )
The numeral follows the noun: zt>o dryau two
30. Ordinal Numbers
are rarely used. They are formed by simply
dropping the first a with the exception of "the
dmdlq the first nwen the fourth
ryau the second Inch the fifth
dek the third pyaro the tenth.
31. The Verb.
Without an object.
stem ; cham to eat stem : ket to go
ya (yfi) chdmo I am eating ya kedo I am
yi chdmo thou art eating yi kSdo going
e (ye) chdmo he is eating e (ye) kedo
wd chdmo we are eating wd kedo
wu chdmo you are eating imi kedo
ge chdmo they are eating ge kedo.
ya chain I ate y~i ket I went
yi chdm you ate yi ket you went
d cham he ate d ket he went.
yd de chdmo I have been eating
yd de kedo I have been going.
the u sometimes sounds like a very narrow o.
ya it chdmo I shall eat ya u ket
yiii) wyii chdmo you. will e&t yi 11, or yu ket
u chdmo he will eat u ket
wd u chdmo we shall eat wd u ket
iv u chdmo you will eat wu ket
ge u chdmo they will eat ge u ket.
The future often has the moaning of a con-
ditional: ya u bm: "I shall come", or "if I come".
ya u de chdmo I shall eat
ya u de kedo I shall go.
ya lii chdmo I use or used to eat
yi ni chdmQ you use or used to eat
e ni chdmo he uses or used to eat,
chdm eat ! ket go ! pi. kddun go !
pi. chamun eat! kede won let us go!
chain wa let us eat!
In the present tense the verbs always end in o.
The imperfect in most cases has no final vowel,
but ends in the second consonant of the stem ;
there are however a few cases, where i is added.
For instance a mil he laughed.
In the third person sing, of the Imperfect d is
not the pronoun, but a particle denoting the past
tense. It is much used in telling stories etc.
The habitual form denotes action, which is
done usually, either in the present, or in the past.
It is really a mode, not a tense.
I have not been able to find a difference
between the two futures. The first is much more
used than the last.
As the two examples show, in one case in
the first Future the verb has the form of the Present,
in the second case the form is different. There
is no rule for which form is to be used in the
Future. But in the Perfect, Second Future, and
Habitual, the verb has always the form of the
In the present tense the vowel of the stem
is generally long, and has a low tone. Where the
vowel is short in the Present, as a rule the tone
32. The Verb with a Noun as Object.
ya chamo by el I am eating dura
yti kidb gat I am going to the river.
iii chami byel \ T -,
J _L j v " v f~,7 } 1 ate dura
ya chama byel J
ya Mta pack I went home.
ya u chamo byel I shall eat dura
yn u keti pacli I shall go home.
cham buel \
7 > / i ~/j J eat dura
chami byel I
pi. chamu byel eat dura
chain wa byel let us eat dura
fo&0' pac/t go home
pi. ketu pach go home
ket iva pach let us go home.
In Perfect, Second Future and Habitual the
verb has the same form as in the Present.
The final o in Present has the middle tone.
The Imperfect has two characteristics: 1. if
the second consonant of the stem is mute, it
is generally voiced (soft) in the present, but it is
voiceless (hard) in the Imperfect; 2. in most cases
the final vowel is a, seldom i.
In some cases a final t becomes /; see the
The subject may be placed behind the verb;
this position is frequently used in telling stories;
when ka "and" begins a sentence, the object always
precedes the verb, and the subject is suffixed to
the verb. This form is used in the Past only; it
has one marked difference to the corresponding
form of the Passive: it has generally the high tone
on both syllables.
rmo to run a ntige gon he killed him
a rdnd I ran a bind I came
a reni you ran a chivole he called
a rene he ran but: a chwole he called
a rSn wd we ran him.
a ren wu you ran
a r&n ge they ran
The plural forms are not much used, the
corresponding person of the singular being sub-
The sign of the Past, a, is sometimes dropped.
Sometimes the subjective pronoun is employed
twice, before and behind the verb; for the last,
generally the emphatic form is used : wu chhm
wun you ate ; ge ben gen they came. '
33. The Passive Voice.
The characteristic of the passive voice is
the vowel with the falling tone, that is a high
tone, which falls just before its end. There is
no final vowel only in a few cases a final o is
heard. -- Probably the passive voice is originally
an intransitive form of the verb, denoting a state;
according to this we can hardly speak of passive
tenses, it is rather a mood, an accomplished
condition or situation. But in many cases it clearly
conveys the meaning of a past tense ; sometimes,
not very frequently, a future also is formed by
prefixing u, u.
d clidm it is, was eaten
d yot he is, was found, yodo to find
ya gwet I (my name) was written, givMo to write
ya u gwet I shall be written.
The doer of the action may be expressed
either by a pronoun or by a noun.
a. by a pronoun.
1. The absolute forms are used. The 'helping
vowel' e is added to the verb. In this case the
stem -vowel has a high tone, the helping vowel
a chdme (chdme) ydn it was eaten by me
d chdme yin it was eaten by you
d chdme gen it was eaten by them.
Sometimes yl "by" is said before the noun;
the 'helping vowel' is then dropped:
d cJidm yl en it was eaten by him.
2. The short forms of the pronoun are used.
d kwopa (or kwopd etc.) it was spoken by me,
or: by us
d kwopi it was spoken by thee, or: by you
d kwope it was spoken by him, or: by them
d mdta it was drunk by me. or: by us
d gwetd it was written by me, or: by us.
b. by a noun.
Here always yl "by" is added:
d chdrn yl jdl eni it was eaten by this man.
It is often difficult, to distinguish the active
form from the passive. A general rule is this:
The Shilluk prefers to speak in the passive voice ;
therefore the foreigner can also avoid misunder-
standings best by using the passive voice as much
The differences between the active and the
passive voice are :
1. the active in the imperfect if followed by a
noun object, generally has a final a, the
passive never has.
2. the active in many, perhaps in most, cases
has in the imperfect a low tone, the passive
always has either the falling or the high tone.
3. The active imperfect sometimes has a long
vowel ; in the passive the vowel is generally
short, or rather half-long.
4. In some cases the passive voice inserts a
semivowel before the vowel of the stem:
fbdo to beat, fwot beaten. See the list below.
34. Some examples for distinguishing the active
and passive form.
ya gbcha (or: gocha) jal an I struck this man
ya goch yi jal an I was struck by this man
ya gocha yin I struck you (sing.)
ya goche yin I was struck by you (sing.)
ya gw-hd wun I struck you
ya goche wun I was struck by you
d go.cli ydnd he struck me
a goche ydn he was struck by me
ya clidmd jal an I cheated this man
d ckdm yl jal an he w r as cheated by this man
d clidmd ydn he cheated me
d clidrne ydn he was cheated by me
i/a chami en I cheated him
yn clidme en I was cheated by him
yi clidind gen you cheated them
yi clidme gen you were cheated by them
ya chwold jal an I called this man
ya cliwol yl jdl an I was called by this man.
35. The Yerbal Noun or Infinitive.
chain eating kedb going
cham an this eating ken an this going, this
chdmo byel eating of dura walk.
More about these forms see in the list.
36. The Noun Agent.
The doer of the action expressed in the verb.
There are two forms, one for expressing an occa-
sional, and the other the habitual action.
90.90. to work:
nane gqgo one who is working just now, or occa-
nate ywok one who works habitually, a workman.
mado to drink:
nane mado one who is drinking just now
nate mat one who drinks habitually, a drinker.
37. The Negation of the Verb.
There are two negative particles: fa or la,
and nuti ; nuti originally means "not yet", but is
often used in the same way as fa "not". Fa and
nuti are applied in the imperfect and present.
yd fa ket I did not go, or: I shall not go
ya nuti kMb, or ket I have not gone yet.
A single word is negated by fat, fate: fate
yan (it is) not I ; fate en not he ; fate jal eni not
The prohibitive is expressed by ku:
yi ku ket do not go !
pi. wu ku ren do not run!
38. The auxiliary verb "to hare": da.
ya da nyei'i I have money
ge da ivot they have a house.
39. The auxiliary verb to be.
1. The predicate is a noun.
a. fa, La: yd ba rit I am king
b. bana, bane, fane, fan en it is he.
c. by the emphatic pronoun: yana rit
d. by the simple pronoun: ya rit
e. by a: en ft rit he is king.
2. The predicate is an adjective or an adverb.
a. ya : e ya ken where is he ?
b. yena: e yena nial he is above
c. b~edo "to stay, remain" ; is also employed
in the sense of 1.
40. 4 List of Verbs
ya mdtd pi
ya mdti pi
yd tera ydt
tell a lie
d Jet, a fyet
yd kdrnb ktcop
yd koma kwop
I spoke a word
yd gwvti waiio
I wrote a book
ya fotd nate
yd chwoto nal
a cliwola nal
yd nil do
yd nuti yat
yd nota yat
yd nekd </*/<'/
ill their different Forms.
yat d ter
yi ku fet
do not lie
d 7\o t
The adverbs have nothing particular either in
form or in position; they are merely words;
therefore only a few are given here as examples.
- Many of the adverbs are nouns or verbs,
Adverbs of place.
ken lii i ka there
," place; here, where
kun | J
chaki near chine over there.
ken place" : w r hen kan while
opun then anan now
chon formerly duwa yesterday
duki to-morrow de chan tin to-day
kine, kinau thus kidi how?
diet thoroughly, certainly tyau also.
42. Seine Conjunctioiis.
ki and, with, connecting words
ka and, connecting sentences
de but kit a } .
dfa | that (P ur P se )-
The prepositions are nouns and are treated
as such ; the noun following them is a genetive ;
if they are followed by a pronoun it is in the
Ian "back" bfm rit behind the king
Ml \ ,, i ji u bane behind him
keie] k^tt gdn amidst them.
bt>l pack in front of the
nim nam facing the river
bute gol beside the fence
wiy yat on the top of
yey gen in the midst of
dyer wot in the middle
of the house
kwbm kyen on the horse.
The Shilluks are very fond of using inter-
jections 5 every mood is expressed by some inter-
jection. They are, however, so manifold, and
change so arbitrarily according to the degree
and kind of mood, that they can hardly be
rendered in writing. Most ample differences of
tone are employed here, the low tone as a rule
being the medium of expressing vexation, dis-
appointment, and contempt; the high tone: joy,
buh 9 a expressing surprise
boi, 6 expressing surprise
mui expressing horror
a, E expressing contempt
II. Short Sentences.
et chwbl Nadok go, call Nyadok!
bUb ken? f .
yb ken? f where 1S he?
yd ganby nate yd fach I think, the man is in the
a cliwole ym? he is called (by) you? = did you
awo, a chwol yes, he is called = has been called.
e btnb he is coming.
e leti a ken? he was seen (by) you where? =
where did you see him?
e letd ki wot bwori he was seen (by) me in the
house of the white man.
nut I beno not yet came = he has not yet come.
yd u ket, u chwble en I shall go, shall call him =
shall I go and call him?
jivan kedb make haste going = go quickly.
wot jaqb ya ket'i? house of chief is \
where? (where is the
wbt jagb agon 6n1 house of chief is ( house . of the
where it? chiei?
mite ydn yo show me the way.
yd niito yo I show the way.
jdl eni naje ym? man this is known thee? Do
you know this man?
fyeje dwdtd no ask him (he) wants what ask
him what he wants!
yd dwdtd kedb I want to go.
yi k&ld ken! you come from where?
yd kfrld gol rit I come from enclosure of king =
I come from the king.
yi wore yi men? you were sent by whom? = who
amen a a wore yin? who is it he sent you? =
who sent you?
yd wore yi jago I was sent by chief = the chief
e dwdtd. no? he wants what?
e kb, yi kete yie he says you may go to him.
yd bd yei be_no I not can come = I cannot come.
bu ken md btn dnan (there is) wanting place which
to come now = I have no time (no oppor-
tunity) to come now.
yd u bl tin uwar I shall come this evening.
min an bd yu Fakoi? This one not way (to) F. =
is this the way to F.?
yo en? is this the way?
awo, i/o en yes, this is the way.
yu an, fate ki en this is the way, not that one.
yd u nute yi ki yo I shall show you the way.
yi u (yu) nuta yo you shall show I way = I shall
show you the way.
yo doch? Is the road good?
yd gano, fi gir ki yo I think, water much on way
= there is much water on the road.
kot d moki duwa rain dropped yesterday = it rained
kot ni moki ki chan it rains every day.
men an bd yo Mte Fakoi this one is way going
F. = this is the way to F.
cliate mdl diet go on exactly = go straight on.
yi b&t ddl? you are how = how are you?
yd nuti b&do I still am I am well.
jdl an e da jwok man this he has sickness = this
man is sick.
yi but ki dno? you lie with what? = what ails
tyele da ken let foot his has place hot = his foot
has a wound.
nute ydn tt/eli show me your foot!
ken let kake duon? place hot time big? = is the
rune nMo years its many = it is several years old.
ere yi nuti jwani be_no ? why you not yet hastened
coming? = why did you not come earlier?
yd ketl yi djwdgo I went to the witch-doctor.
yd tote ydt I was given tree = he gave me medecine.
yd tdta ydt I gave medicine.
yd u Iwok ken let I shall wash the wound.
yi re ywon? you why cry? = why do you cry?
ken let e ramo the wound aches (pains).
ydt dndn here is medecine.
Iwok ken let ki chan ki mol wash the wouud every
yi Rn? you heard? = did you understand?
kwope d lm? his talk was heard? = did you
awo, yd lln yes, I understood.
rum chan dbikyel In kite finish day six come
again = after six days come again!
ken let d nokl the wound has healed.
ye k&ld dan they brought a man.
dan d kal a man has been brought.
d chwop yl ton he has been pierced with a spear.
d chwop ki k6re ki ton he is pierced in breast with
spear = his breast has been pierced by a
kal may (mach) kworo bring a lamp !
kbt mdcli make a fire !
e kbdo mdcli he makes a fire.
d kbtd mdcli he made a fire.
mdcli d kot a fire was made.
mdcli ba lyel the fire does not burn.
yen tech the wood is wet.
yi tald no tin? you cooked what to-day?
yd tald gyerio I cooked a fowl.
bak nwole gyeno dhweii ki fi boil four eggs (with
rino t$k the meat is hard.
chip gin chdm wiy (wich) pant put the food on
the ( table!
wu ben (btino) wu cham? you all you ate? = have
all of you eaten?
ge fwoclid chdk they churn milk = they make
chdk d fwoch milk is churned.
ge nekd duel they killed a goat.
yd dwdtd mate fi I want to drink water.
hot may kworo light the lamp!
nek macli kill the fire = put the lamp out!
kon fi yey fiik pour water into the pot!
tyete chanduk kite wot carry box put house = carry
the box into the house!
men an pek this one is heavy.
ba teri yd ketd not carry I alone 1 = 1 alone
cannot carry it.
chwole jdl en, yi konye en call this man, you be
helped (by) him = that he may help you.
biy icd tErl ydn an come, we (will) carry this tree.
wd u gera wot we will build a house.
wot kit wdld wot labo a stone house or a mud
bu kide ken \
bu kit ki'ken ( there are no stones here '
yd u chivbld ji ddi? how many people shall I call?
cliwol ji pyaro call ten men !
yd yiti ki je dbi-kyel I found six men.
ge u bl duki they will come to-morrow.
wd u gwo no ? (givok ano) what shall we do ?
ivd dwdtd gwbk ki yin we want to work with you.
wd u tote nyen gd ddi we shall be given money
it how? = how much money shall we get?
kd logi wu purl ken an if (it happens) you hoe
wu totd lau mddoch you shall give I a nice cloth.
bi yu ] ) duki mol come (you) to-morrow morning
') instead of bi wu; w is assimilated by i and thus
has become if.
kd u kanu ki kwerl and bring (you) hoes !
Ji gUgo yo the people make a road.
yi gwo no? what are you doing?
yd gwokd pam I made a table.
ddkdu e chwayo ki fuki ki dak the woman forms
big pots and small pots (tobacco pipes).
e kbnd fen ki yat he strikes ground with tree =
he strikes a pole into the ground.
e futa yat he pulled the pole out.
ge pona lum ki yey by el they weed grass in the
midst of dura = they weed the dura.
qe ban qwok ki bivon they refused to work with
the white man.
e ban ki t\r chanduk he refused to carry the box.
amen a gwok tanduk? who made the box?
ge bdkd kdl they fenced (in) the yard.
chon yd ni kwai do (dok) wiya sometimes I used
to herd the cattle of my father.
Fworio u chagl wen a? teaching will begin time
which? = when will school begin?
nyi chago mol it uses to begin in the morning.
wotono ddi btno how many children have come ?
nan-tono gen abi-ryau d bi boys they seven have
come seven boys h. c.
wu re nuti btn duwd ? you why not came yester-
day? = why did you not c. y.?
yd ivore yi wd be kwdi dok I was sent by my
father to herd the cattle.
ivd u givMo tin we will write to-day.
yi kald ivarii? did you bring your book?
m ed weyd fach mine left I home I left mine at
tote yd wdno give me a book!
kd logo wu gfike ydn clian wun ddek wu tote ki irai'tn
if it happens you work me days them three,
you are given with book = if you work
three days for me, you will receive a book,
wd dwdtd gwbk Id yin we want to work with you.
wd u tote iii) en gd adl ? we shall be given money it
how? = how much money shall you give us?
kd logi (= logo) wu purl ke?i an, wu totd bet md-
dSich if you hoe this place, I will give you
("you give I") a nice fish-spear!
bi yd dukl kd u kanii ki kwerl come you to-morrow
and bring hoes (with you)!
ndm e dbho the river is rising.
ndm e dwen the river is falling.
ndm duon chare 1 ,
niim fani cMr~e \ the river 1S vei T hl g h , ML
ivd u mayo rech we will fish (catch fish).
wd chegq rech we catch fish (with a hook).
ivd chekd rech we caught fish (with a hook).
ge tyeha yd (yai) they carve a boat.
yei toyo the boat leaks.
ndm nerib ki ndm crocodiles are numerous in the
nan d mdkd dan duwa the croc, caught a man
men an bd wd this (one) is my father.
toni dgon en? where is your spear (spear your is
where he) ?
ivode d repl yi mdch his house was caught by fire.
doge d reh his cows ran away.
men an bd wot wun ? is this your house ?
ge neaii by el gen they have sold their dura.
d kwdnd kwena he took my bread.
hvbk lam (from lau!) wash your loin-cloth!
land d Iwok my cloth is washed.
nut I Ibgd nine he has not yet washed his face.
ddera e kwdmo my donkey is laming.
nute ydn fii'oti show me your farm!
db (= dok) won e ch&mb lum our cows are grazing.
bei nMo ki fbte icon there are many mosquitoes in
nwole ge tb their children are dead.
lana a kwdl my loin-cloth is stolen.
d mudjd gy%ne ki by el he gave his fowls (hens)
yd Ivta dyek un kele yen I saw your goats in the
yd pwotl yen (= yi en) I was beaten by him =
he beat me.
d twoclil gen he was bound by them = they bound
amen d cliwole ydn^ who called me?
yd cliwole yi men? I was called by whom?
ivd tpte nyen yi obwon the white man gave us
money (we were given m.).
d kobl (kopl) di ki yin ? what did he tell you ?
ge riene yin ? do you see them ?
d pytyd gen he asked them.
wu konyd I will help you ("you will help I")!
wo nete yi gen they laughed at us ("we were 1. at").
amen d kopl yin ki ntok? who told you this?
yd niite en gole I was shown by him his home =
he showed me his home.
ge miijd rit ki dok they gave cattle to the king.
obwon d mite yo yi gen the white man was shown
the way by A them.
ge rnujd dean ki lum they gave the cow grass.
ge cliwota nyen ki ye they asked him for money.
ge chwola nyeji ki ye they asked him for money.
he asked for the chief '
yei d wan the boat approached.
yd d wati the boat left.
yei d clmn the boat stopped.
ge noto yen they are felling trees.
woman romo fi the women fetch water.
aS nyeto dok they are milking cows.
kdpi mht speak slowly!
M ] ) ni jwdne kwop not use hasten speech do
not speak quickly !
yd nuti lino I did not understand.
yd bd lino I do not understand.
e kobl di 2 ) ki yin? what did he say to you?
yd dwdtd Ion achem I want straight sticks.
kwdn dor an take this adze!
daclio u yiego labb the women shall (may) carry
ge chabo labb they knead mud.
d chapd labb he kneaded mud.
dbre wot d pat the house has fallen down.
re let his skin is hot = he is lazy.
yi re ywon? why do you cry?
mio dbti nare the mother suckled her child.
wiye da riwogo (his head =) he has lice.
woton e two go the children wash themselves.
a iwok he is washed.
china (china a) kayo my intestines ache = my
wija kago my head splits = I have a head-ache.
e bl riotyenb he came some days ago.
wd yend Bura-Chol chdn wd bd pyarb we were
Taufikia days our are 10 = we have been
at T. ten days.
rund bd pydrq wi ki dbich my years are 15 = I
am 15 years old.
rune d mat, rund yd chdn his years are above,
my years are behind: he is older than I.
bd duon ne ydn he is not so old as I.
yd mold ben e tok I was first coming he was
absent = I came earlier than he.
1 ) or: yi ku.
2 ) from adi, edi how?
d cliwon e beno he was behind he came = he
yi bl d wen a wh,en did you come ?
Jeno gMo lo^no chine the Dinkas build (= live)
beyond the river.
kal gyin an much obivoti carry these fowls give
the white man = bring these fowls to the
nim amen? what is your name?
mna ba Nadok my name is Nyadok.
ico nin amen? what is yours father's name?
kwo } ) gin an take this (thing) !
gin an ba mea this is mine.
tote ydn mei give me yours!
ge nekd duel they killed a goat.
lyela wija I (had) cut my hair ("head").
yd u clidkd kedo I begin go = I will go, I must go.
tide chan^the sun rises.
clian a tul the sun has risen.
bute clian the sun sets.
chan d bute the sun has set.
ge geti Nikano ki dean they sacrificed a cow to
yd nebo I am wet.
Iwbki Ian wash this cloth !
dane dacho e Ibgb ki Ian the woman is washing
yvy 2 ) wot sweep the house !
Iwok taml (tabo pot) clean this pot!
fen fd mbdq it is dark.
e nekl 6g\k aryau he killed two buffaloes.
d khnl fyen ogik kd go weki rit he took the skin
of the buffalo and gave it to the king.
tun 9 ) dnwdk bar the horns of the bush-buck are
! ) for kiv6n.
2 ) from yejo.
3 ) or: ton.
bber win an tar the feathers of this bird are white.
e budo key (ken) /yen he is lying on the bed.
e ya gole jago he is at the chiefs house.
e ketd yi obwon kwarb he went to the (red) European.
Joge dbk ylno drive the cattle away.
byel a chek the dura is ripe.
kachu byel kd ge kalun strip (you pi.) off the dura
and bring it !
je chdnb the people are dancing.
e yabo dok he searched cattle.
dbk a yaf the cattle were searched for.
gwok ku gbcli (dog not strike) do not beat the dog!
e clidmd rino he ate meat.
a gwecJia gwok ki tyele he kicked the dog with
fen let de chan t tin it ("the earth") is hot to-day.
yd fa yel ki kwofe \ T , , ,. , .
yd fay* ki Jgi ] l do not bellove ^ 1S word '
yei mdch a chum the steamer stops.
tvro kltd yen yi yei the people bring wood on the
weki ya fali give me your knife!
ken ii rum, won, wo cliarn when we have finished,
we shall eat.
ken a bene, fen fa war when he came, it was night.
fi ba chatb the water does not move.
yGmb gir (there is) much wind.
4 chdkd e wiim kope ydn 9 nuti kedb "he began it
finished (be) told (by) me, he not yet went"
= though I told him, he did not go.
ba yei gwok iin, md re (or mde) da jivbk he cannot
work to-day, because he is sick.
bd kwdpe yen, mde boko he does not say it, be-
cause he is afraid.
jivdni reno, kipa yi ku cliwon run quickly, lest
you be late !
kop tin chwaki mdl, kipa ge Iin yi tero beno "speak
lift your voice up, that they be heard by
people all" : speak; aloud, so that all people
may hear it!
chip kwofi bol kech gen, kd logo yu (yi u) de bdno,
u yote yin tin "put your words face their
place, if it happens you will refuse, it will
be found to you to-day" tell the truth,
or you will be punished.
bi icof, fa yu (= yi o) nepe kot come into the
house, lest you become wet!
ka logo yu bi tin, doch if you come to-day, it is
kd logo u kSbo todo, u fwote icon if he tells a lie,
he will be beaten by us.
kipano a boki? why are you afraid?
kipano a bdke? why is he afraid?
yd fa boki I am not afraid.
ge re Tin gen? "they why run they" = why do
kuche ydn I do not know.
naje ydn I know.
yd bd g&</Q> kd buhi doro yd I do not work, be-
cause I have no adze (. . . "and not have
yd bu doro, benen a dale ydn yi givok "1 have no
adze, that is it it is difficult for me to work"
= I have no adze, therefore I cannot work.
tt/etd let, benen a bd kedd my foot has a wound,
therefore I do not (= cannot) go.
yd bd yei kedo, md tyeld let I cannot go, because
my foot is sore.
adero e da kech, benen a ywohi the donkey was
hungry, therefore he was braying.
d yehd Sura-Choi, yd ni kedo chuk ki chano while
I was at Taufikia, I used to go on the mar-
ket every day.
ken d k6ti won gat, mdl d mini, kd e rnoko when
we went to the river, the sky became dark
and it rained.
yi ni worn je mdko, de yd ba woiie yin you may
cheat others, but I shall not be cheated by
a komi yen, de fate ydn he said so, not I.
a gwoke gen, de fate won it was done by them,
but not by us.
koni ydn, u jivano tumo help me, (that it) may be
kopi, u jivano bmo tell (him), he may come at
yd rnhni kedo wode I was forbidden to go into his
wA kede let him go !
wo kdde tydu wo too will go.
wei ge bU let them come!
ken yd nEnd, e gogo while I slept, he was working.
ken a yen wa fach, ge kwald nyeii won while we
were in town, they stole our money.
ge ji Adi ki fun an ? How many people live in
wou nutl nhto? Is your father still alive?
jagb nut"! Is the chief well?
yi bet adi ? how are you ?
yd bMl yau I am well.
icon an duon en this is the big (= the biggest)
en a yen clidn he is the last.
ydn a kwbm beno I came first.
i biito yi fyeno he is lying on (his) bed.
e ya wiy wot he is on the house.
d leda d cliaki wot "he was seen by me (he was)
near the house".
e yd nach wot he was behind the house.
yd ket ken chnki ki gen I went close to them.
ya da dok aryau clioti gen I have two cows (it is)
finished (with) them = I have only two cows.
je dbi kyel clioti gen d bi only six men came.
yd letd gen, clioti gen I saw them (it was) finished
(with) them = I saw only them.
e fa wo-ten, chotl he is but a boy.
ye da dok mdfot dok dbikyel he has cows sur-
passing cows six = he has more than six
je d toil, ge fodo je ddek more than three people died.
dan a daclw a yecli puk wije the woman lifted the
pot on to her head.
fttk d y%jl fen ki wije she puts the pot on to the
fuk d fane fi she fills the pot with water.
e koni bur kl fen he dug a hole in the ground.
gwok yiebe e teico the dog his tail wags = w r ags
yite gwok a nol the ears of the dog were cut off.
men fd duon that is not sufficient.
wo gwok ono de chan tin? what shall we do to-day?
kidd? shalfl go?
ket won? shall we go?
yd kedo be dwar I am going shooting.
yen e beno, ge kbgo the trees come they blossom
= begin to blossom.
givliga d tuml my work is finished.
yd ydnl en I was insulted by him.
dean be_no e nwolo the cow is going to calve.
yi pivot ki ano? you were beaten with what? =
with what did he beat you?
keii yigi yd fa bi the place became (so that) I
not come ( = I cannot come.
kifano a fa bwi? why did he not come?
yi ku fet do not lie !
yi ku kictit do not steal !
ge gana rit they honoured the king.
ge man ki obwon they despised the stranger.
e bald gwok ki kit he threw stones at the dog.
yd den yi gen I was pressed (= vexed) by them.
kd logo e yd mdnut, wo re kwonl en if he were
present, we should be helped by him.
kd logi ya da gm-cham, yi re tptd If I had food,
I should give you (some).
kd logo nuti beno, bd re yitl ki gi-fen "if not yet
came, not should receive with thing of the
earth" = if he had not come, ho would not
have received anything.
kd logo fen de yd inddoch, wo re de btno (or : wo
re bi) if the weather had been fine, we should
ge nako they are fighting.
ge werq they are angry.
gin an e wan anb this thing it eye which ? = what
does this thing mean?
kwope ydn ki tyele gin em tell me the meaning
( ("the foot") of this thing!
ya neiid yuwe (from yo) "I see his way" = I hope
he will come.
yd bogo d to we I am afraid he will die.
ya bokl en I am afraid of him.
6 bot? will he recover?
ge par they fled.
ndje ydn ki men duon (it is) known (to) me with
greatness = I know it perfectly.
u bi tin diet he will surely come to-day.
il mote de btno perhaps he has come already.
dela ramo (yamo) ben my whole body ("skin")
yen yd yey fen bme trees were everywhere.
kwof eni d fare ydn I remember this word.
ba gwbk gin eni kirte he will never do that.
yd bd lete yin kfrte you will never see me again.
d pwocli yi gen, kd lok (logo) nane tek he was
praised by them, because he was a brave
d chdye yi gen, kd lok nane let he was abused,
because he was a lazy one.
ge man ki gon, kd lok ndte ker they envied him,
because he was a rich man.
wo ba yei beii, ka de kot we could not come on
account of the rain.
d bi kech icen he came instead of his father.
chwek d de beno an ambassador of the king has
yi kb di } } ki en? what do you think ("say") of
yd fa bokl en I am not afraid of him.
wa fa dwata kono yi we do not want your help.
man ki jdl eni (he) hated this man.
e koma dyer (dir) he says right = he is right.
yi rono you are wrong.
d f&n he denied.
d yogo mdnut he has become a present one he
kvrd budl ye ki cliano my breast was pressed (tired)
by him all days = he always troubled me.
kore ku ni but do not trouble him (his breast not
ivel let loose!
miti hold fast!
kwi je mdgo d bi, kw? je mdgo d dbn some people
have come, and some have stayed behind.
je d repl the people are reconciled.
d mem they are reconciled.
d bvdi ge man wune ge fan drijau, de ge m&ri dndn
,,it was they quarrelled, their years were
two" = they were quarrelling two years,
but now they are reconciled.
from kobo adi.
yijd bano "my heart refuses" = I doubt.
wije lal he is ashamed.
nele yi gen he was (laughed at) scoffed at by them.
nete yi gen he was (laughed at) scoffed at by them.
rei wo tek "our body is hard" = we are secure.
lane fyet his loin-cloth was torn.
wei b~e wot let him come into the house !
wei kddd let me go!
fach a dur fen y\ gen the village was destroyed
dan e kord hare the mother takes care of her child.
ge clidkd kun meko they took another place = they
changed their places.
u gwqka yin (it) will (be) done (by) me (for) you
= I will do it for you.
bi yii, wd kede come (you), we will go.
yije kono his heart was excited.
d bl e nuti cliam he came without having eaten.
ba d ket, e nuti ki nacho he did not go (because)
he had not yet taken leave.
d bl e ywoho he came weeping.
d tou, e nuti ten he died, while (still) a child.
III. Two ^ible-Texts.
11. Jal m~eko wot dry an;*) 12. a kdbi
man some son two said
ria nal fen 2 ) kine: wuo, tote yan hi
child boy small thus: father give me with
bun a mea ki re jam. A fani
part which mine with goods. He divided
jdme ki gen. 13. Ka rumi clian
goods his with them. And finished days
mdnok ha nal fen d chona jdme,
few child boy small he gathered goods his,
ka ivil i fdte mdldwi; ki ka eni
and travelled country far; with place this
a weti jdme ki ri clidrn. 14. Kd
he squandered his goods with eating. And
ruini ki ivete jam, ka kecli
finished with squandering goods and hunger
e btno, ka wije mum. 15. Ka
he came, and head his perplexed. And
*) "to have" is often omitted.
2 ) nal ten is "the younger", nal duon "the elder boy".
kSti in jal md jal ker } ) ki fon
-*- j - j i i . i ~ > ^
went to man which man rich in country
eni; a wore yl jal eni fdl be
this ; he was sent by man this bush to
hwayo ki kune don; 16. a ton ki yey
herd with swine; he died inmidst
kech. Kune don ni chdmb ki bfado; nal
hunger. swine used to eat with bffrdb; boy
eni dwata riwak ki gen; de bun
this wished eat with them ; but not were
an toti ki bfado men chame.
this gave with bfado which were eaten by him.
17. A rurni ki yeje kete, kd e
He thought in heart his alone, and he
kb kine: e, wuo da ban mdnMo,
said thus: ah, my father has slaves many,
ka lii cham gen, gin clidm ni dbno*).ya ra
and use eat they, food is left. I why
nage rea ki kecli 1 ? 18. A kobi kine:
kill myself with hunger? He said thus :
wei yd dwbdb, yd Mti yi wuo u
let I (me) rise I go to my father will
k6fd kine: ya de ronb ki yin, ki
say thus: I have sinned with thee, with
men duon; 3 ) 19. yd fa myer ki
which (is) great; I not am worth with
chwblb ydnd wadi kete, de wei yd
calling I am your son again, but let me
1 ) a man which was a rich man.
2 ) and when they eat, food is left.
3 ) I have been sinning against you with (a sin) which
logo bam. 20. A dwoni, ka e
become your slave. He arose and he
bia yl wen. Ka lete yl
came to his father, and was seen by
wen, e clicune ivano, ka
his father he was going to approach and
yfye ywot'io, ka rend yie, a kwdki
his heart cried and ran to him, embraced
rei gen ka do gon numi. 21. A kobi
each other and mouth his kissed. said
ria nal ten kine: iviio, yU Ton ki
child boy small thus: father, I sinned with
yin ki men duoii, ka yd ku eliiki
you with which big and I not repeat
cliwolo ydnd wddi ! ) kvte. 22. A cliwole
be called I am your son again. Called he
wate ban ki yi iven; ka e kb
child slave by his father and he said
kine: kanu ki lain ntogo dock, ka
thus: bring with clothes things good, and
rukh ndl an, ka Iwete kitun ki
put on child this and his fingers put with
gwel dttgb, ka tyele kitun ki war.
ring metal and his feet put with shoes.
23. Ka kalu wane chive ka nalu, wei wd
And bring ox fat and butcher, let us
cliam won, wd nste icon. 24. ma wada
eat we, we laugh we. because my son
dn, d yigu men to, de a cliyer;
this he became one dead, but he became alive
*) "I must not repeat calling: I am your son" : I must
never be called your son again.
a yi-9 a men wano, de e
he became one was disappeared but he
dubk. A yote gen be neto.
returned. Was found them they Tor laughing.
25. De nal duon a yd wok, ka be_ni
But child big he was bush, and came
die (chamo) e wano, a lino chivake je
was going to approach he heard voice of people
ge tiigo. 26. A chwoti wat ban, en
they played. He called child slave this
d py^je gon kine: ano ena a wou
asked he him thus : what this make noise
tBro? A kobi kine: omyau d
people ? He said thus : Your brother has
In, de a get ki yi wuo (wou)
come, but he was welcomed by your father
ki na wane chwe dma e bl ki
with child of ox fat because he came with
dqjo. 28. A ivire, ka ch6g6
well-being. He was angry, and remained
fdl e fa bl; d dwai yi
bush, he not came; he was brought by
wen, e kwdchd gon. 29. A kofe
his father, he begged him. Said he to
wen kine: yd gokd yin wund
his father thus : I work (with) you, my years
n&rio, dogi nuti gan ydn ki
many, your mouth not yet thought I with
fyemo ki yd) 1 } bun na-onwok
refusing with me ; not were child of ram
1 ) "I work with you my years are many, I not yet
thought of refusing your mouth": I have been working with
you many years, and I have never thought of refusing,
disobeying your commandment,
ma gan yln ki iveke ydn u chdmd
which thought you with giving me to eat I
ki yachi won. 1 ) 30. Ka Hen wadi,
with friends our. And came your son
nan a r%h jami a gite
a man which spoiled your goods, he was welcomed
yin ki ivdne chwe. 31. A kobi wen
by you with ox fat. Said his father
kine: e, wddd, wd d b%t kdke fen
thus: ah, my son, we were time of earth
fa chakiy jam dk d yend ya ben,
not near, goods these, which are mine all,
fate jami? 2 ) 32. De ctndn wei wA bedb
not your goods? But now let us be
ki dkyel, wa n&to;*) ma omydu,
with one, we laugh; because your brother,
d bidd men to, de a cJiyer,
he was one dead, but he became alive,
a Heda men wanb, de e dukb.
he was one who was lost, but he returned.
1. Twol fan en a rack ki brok*)
Snake was it, was bad with wickedness
J ) "there is not a ram which you thought of being
given to me, that I might eat it with our friends" : you have
never given me a ram ....
2 ) "we have lived (together) a time of the earth which
is not near, and all these goods, which are mine, are they
not yours ?" we have lived together a long time ....
3 ) now let us live in unity, and be glad.
4 ) "was bad with wickedness, astuteness": was extre-
kele lai bene a chwdche yi
amidst animals all which were created by
jwok. Fan en a fyechi dacho kine:
God. Was it which asked woman thus :
Fane jwok d kyetl ivun, kine: wu ku cham
is it God refused you thus: you not eat
ki rei yen eni? 2. A kobi dacho
from body trees these? Said woman
kine: wd kofe kine: cham won 1 ) ki
thus : we were said thus : eat we from
rei yen ben. 3. De wu ku chain wun
body trees all. But you not eat you
k 1 ^ rei yen dk, ka u nwali wun ki
from these trees, and if touch you with
chen wun, wu tb. 4. A kofe dacho
hands your, you die. Was said woman
ki yi twol kine: e! wu fd tqu! 5. De
by snake thus: ah! you not die! But
naje jwok kine: chan wu cham wun nin
knows God thus : day you eat you eyes
wun re ge u yvpv gn
your selves they will be opened ! thing
ddch ki gin rach u lete ivun,
good and thing bad will be seen by you,
nami ka naje gen ki yi jwok; wu
as and are known they to God; you
bvt wu na jwok. 6. Ka let ydn
be you as God * And was seen tree
eni yi dacho, e chvgo; a loge rS
this by woman, it was red; became itself
! ) we may eat.
men chdm yi dacho, ka jal ge
one was eaten by woman, and man their
tote. 7. A yep nih ge rei
gave she. Was opened eyes their selves
gdn, a Ute rei gen, ge chdta
them, was seen body their, they walked
nan '). A fune gen ki yite
thus. Was plucked by them with leaves
yen, a ruke gin. 2 ) 8. Ka fen
of trees, was put on by them. And earth
yik mdlip, a bm jwok, a Rh ge
became cool, came God, was heard by them
tyele gon y a fane gen, Adam ki tyen
foot his, hid they, Adam and people
gen,*) fa kine rei ge u let,
their. not thus body their may be seen
ki yi jwok. 9. A chwoti jivok kine: Adam,
by God. Called God thus : Adam,
yi ya ken? 10.^4 kobi Adam kine: yd
you are where? Said Adam thus: I
Una chwakiy a fdnd, ya bwok, yika
heard your voice, hid I, I feared, because I
11. A kobi jwok kine: ' amen a k6fi
yin kine: yi chata nau? De yi chdm ki
rei yan a kyere yin kine: yi ku chdm
J ) chata nau "walked thus" that is, walked without
anything: they were naked.
2 j gin is sometimes used for gen.
3 ) "Adam with their people" that is with his wife;
more frequently: na gol gen, child of their enclosure; "people"
and "wife" are always used with the plural of the person
ki re! 12. A kobi Adam kine: dacho a
wike ydn yl yin, fan en a muji ydn ki
nwole yat, kd yd chdm. 13. A fyech dacho
yi jwok kine: yi re cham ki nwole yen*?
A kobi dacho kine: twol fan en a wdni
ydn, a ban mo (ma?) chdmd. ] ) 14. A kobi
jwok kine: yi u chen ki yi ka gwok mok
eni, yi u chok yi mnla fen, labo fan en
u chdme yin ki yete chan b~e_n. 15. Mano
u chiba kel wun ki dacho, ki kel negi ki
nege. Fan en u chak wiji ki togo, yi u
Ion ta tyele dan ki togo. 2 ) 16. A kobi
jwok ki dacho kine: fal u ram ki rei u
nEnd gen chano fate fen; ni fa nwole yin
e bu keti mdr&mo rei, yeji u konq tyeh
wun, fan en u chak yin ki jago. 17. A
kobi jwok ki Adam kine: yi ka lini kwop
na got un (wun), ka yi chamo ki re yan
a kyete yin kine: yi kil chdm kere (ki re),
fen u chend cheno; yi ni chdm ki dwen
ki yete chan Venl 18. Kivodo ki tim bene
u toye yin yl fen, ni chain ki nwole yene
fal. 19. Yi u ton yi fur, fan en ka yi
11 cham ki gin cham; men u ddk fen, a
re u chwajd yin; ama yi fa labo, yi
u dogi yi labo.*) 20. A chwol nin na gol
gen Eba, ama en ml te_ri bene. 21. A gok
jwok ki lau a Ian dyel, a ruki gin.
22. A kobi jivok kine: e, dan e_ logo nami
*) after that I ate.
2 ) "Enmity shall I put between you and the woman . . .
it is he who will begin to wound your head, and you will
come after him the heel of the foot of man with wounding" :
and after that you will wound the heel of man.
3 ) "you will die with hoeing, and thus you will eat
food; this (way) you will return to the earth, out of which
I have made you; for you are mud, and you will return to
yey icon, gin rack ki gin docli naje en.
De dndn fa ket ka e kdpo ki rei yat
nEniy kd e cliarno ki rei gon, men u nini
en u wite (icote) atir. 1 ) 23. A kale wok ki
yi jivok ki Eden, kd klti fal be fur ki
feri, a rei gon a kwdni.
J ) "But now lest he go and take by force from the
tree of life, and eat of its (fruit), that one (fruit) which will
(make him to) live (so long that he) will reach eternity".
Only the words occurring in the preceding
pages are given here. The verbs are given in the
present tense. The singular and plural of nouns
are separated by . For example: bat-bat means:
bat is singular, bat 'is plural.
a sign of the imperfect
a it is
dchd that there, those there
dder o donkey
ddl, edi how. how much
a/a in order that
dfoajo-dfodchi hare, rabbit
djwogo-djwok doctor, me-
dmdlo the uppermost, the
dmdn-dmok who ?
dndn here, now, presently
dno pi. ono what, wich?
dtep-dtep bag, sack
bago to make a fence,
to fence in
balb to throw
banb to refuse
ban back, behind ; slave
b&r to be long
bfalo to remain, to stay.
beii, bene all
benen that is, therefore
btno to come
bet fish- spear
In to come; see beno
bbdb to escape, to recover
boi expressing surprise
bbko to fear
bbfo-bbl in front of, face,
bu 9 bun to have not, to
biido to lie down, to lie,
to be sick
budo to be tired, troubled
bull expressing surprise
bute side, beside
byfrlo-byel dura; the sing.
means : a single dura-
ch&bb to knead, to mix 1 )
chagb to begin; generally
used in past: chaka
chaki (to be) near
chaino to be going to, to
chamo to eat, to cheat
clian sun, day; de clian
chanduk (ar.) box
cliatq to walk
chayo to abuse
che short for chamo
chego to be red, ripe ; to
chego to catch fish with
chem to be straight; a-
cJteno to curse
diet verily, very, thorough-
chibo to put, to place
chigo to repeat, to continue
chbgb to remain, continue
c/iqn formerly, sometimes
chbnb to gather, heap up
chbnb to dance
cMtl to N be finished
chuno to stop
chwajb to form, create
chwak, chivek ambassador
of the f king
see also under sh.
chivbbb to spear, to kill
with a spear
cliwolb to call
chwbnb to be behind, be
chwbtb to call
chyeno, cheno-chyen hand
da to have
dak-dak small pot, tobacco-
Jojio to be well, good
dbno to become big
dbnb to remain, to be left
duogo to return
duon-dbnb big, great
rfwai' to bring
dwdtd to want, to wish
dwenb to dry, to be shallow ;
to sink, to fall (water)
d^/* middle, amidst, truth
ddlo to be in difficulties,
not to know how to do
dean pi. dbk cow
deno to press, to vex
dodb to suck
dok-dok mouth, talk, Ian-
dubdo to rise, arise
duro fen to destroy
en he, him
eni this, that, these, those
/a, ba 1. to be; 2. not 1 )
^o to fall
/Aw^ (he, it) is, it is he,
that is it
fanb to hide
fanb to be full
fanb to divide
faro to remember
ic?o to tell lies
jvmb to denie
fen ground, earth
fbdb to beat
Jodo to surpass, be more
funo to pluck
see also under p.
futo to pull out
fwodo farm, cultivated land
fwbno to teach
fyemo to refuse
fyet to be torn
ga piece, copy
gan never (from gano)
gano to think, to consider,
ge they, them
gMo, gvro to build, to
gen they, them
yeto to sacrifice (a cow),
to treat a guest
yir, gir much, many
go he, him
go_go to do, to work
gbjb to beat
gol fence, enclosure, home-
gon he, him
gwalo to be thin
givMo to write, to carve
give jo to kick
gyeno-gyfrh hen, fowl
y&n he, him
jagb to rule
jac/o-jak, jaki chief
jdlo (jal), jok, chwou man
jam goods, property
jbgb to drive away
jor- JOT bug
jwano to hasten, to make
jwok God, sickness
ka place, there
kd and, connecting sen-
kabo to take by force
kago to split, to pain (head)
kajo to bite, to pain
kajo by el to strip off, to
harvest the dura
kake time k. duon old
time, from old times,
kal-kali fence, yard
kalo to come from, to
bring; commonly used
in the imperfect
kfrno to bring
kech-kam hunger, dearth
kedo to go
kel, kele middle, amidst
ken place, time ; when
ken-let "hot place", sore
kete alone, self, only
ki and, connecting words;
kifa that, in order that,
kindu, kine thus
kit-kiti stone, rock, hill,
klto to put
Jcobo to speak, to talk, to
kodo macli to make, to
light a fire
kbab to blossom
kono to be excited
kono bur to dig a hole
kf>?w 9 kivono to help
kono to pour
koro to care for
ku not, expressing pro-
kucho not to know 5 almost
exclusively used in the
passive: kuclie ydn I
do not know
kune don pigs
kwaclw to beg, pray
kwako to embrace
kwalo to steal
kwario to take
kivayb to herd
kwbm-kom back, on, upon
kwarno to halt, to lame
kwdrio to help
%6?c?<2 to refuse
labo mud, clay
M^ animal, game
lau-lam skin, cloth
/a i^o to be far
lai/b: wije layo he is
Ivno to become, or to feel
let (to be) hot, sore, lazy
lido, 1Mb to see
lino to hear
libo to become cool
logo to become
& /o^ro \ if it becomes,
&# Ibgi I if
/o/o (to be) black
Ibnb the A side, region, part
lumo - lum grass
Iwogo to wash
lyelb to shave
lyvlb to burn
ma, mar because
md which rel.
m&db to drink
mago to catch, to seize
mdl heaven, top; on,
above; forward, on-
md.no to forbid, to hate,
mano enmity, hate
mat slow, slowly
mayo to fish
mMo (to be) sweet
meko-moko some, someone,
men whose; the one who
merb to be reconciled
mino to become dark
mito to hold fast
mok thing, things, property
moko (mako) to drop, drip,
mol morning, in the mor-
molo to come early
moto (to do something)
mujo to give
mulo to crawl
mumo to be perplexed,
myerb to be worth, to be
na like, as
n&gb to kill
nami like, as
ne like, as
nebb to be wet
nVno to see, to look
nenb to sleep
n%no to live
nok (to be ) little
nbkb to heal intr.
numb to lick, kiss
nut to be present, to exist
nuti not yet, not
riako to fight, to wrestle
han-hah, nwoli girl
ni particle for the habitual
form of the verb
riim face, in the face of
niltb to show
nwagb to partake of a
nwalb to touch
riwogo louse, lice
nwblo to bear, to calve etc.
child, posterity. n.
gylno hen-egg, chicken
iiachb to take leave
najb to know; almost
exclusively used in the
passive, naje ydn (it)
is known to me: I
nalb to butcher
nate-ty&n man, person
neawq to buy
neto to laugh, to be merry
noto to cut off, hew, fell
nudo to cut
nwech-nwech a large lizard
m nyen metal, money
nyeto to milk
obivbno-bivono white man,
bdek-udikl a mat
of&db a tree ; its fruit is
eaten by goats
ogwok-ogbkl fox, jackal
bgwol-bgwol a black bird
bgwqro-ogwerl the blue
bkbk-bkbk flower, blossom
okwek (bkwbk) - bkwak a
omorb-omor roan antelope
omvok-oriwok male sheep
brbk-brok wickedness, sin
otwon-otibn male animal ;
otyeno some time ago
owet-owet a mat
pacli-myer village, home
parb to flie, to flee
pek to be heavy
ponb lum to weed grass
purb to hoe, cultivate the
pwbchb chak to churn, to
pwojo to praise
pyejb to ask
ramo to pain, ache
re forming reflexive pro-
re why [nouns
rvnb to become or to be
bad, to spoil
repb yi mach to catch
fire, to burn
repb to be reconciled
rmb to run
romo (pi) to fetch, to dip
ro no to be wrong, wicked^
to do wrong
rugb to put on clothes r
rumo to think
rumo to be finished
tar, tar (to be) white
techo to be wet
tedo to carry
tek (to be) hard, strong,
tEro, tMo people
tewo to wag
tin just now, to - day,
tino to lift up
logo to wound
tok (to be) absent
tono, tono-ton egg
toyo to pierce, to sprout
tugb to play
tulo to rise (sun)
twbjo to bind
ty^lb-tyel foot; time, mea-
ft/tffto ya to carve a boat
tyeto to carry
to, ton (to wo) to die
tibtb to give
wmo to be finished
u particle of the future
wa my father
wd y wo we, us
wano to approach
i^a^o to disappear, to be
wano book, paper
i i i
war, uwar night
ivat, ivat-wati son
wat ban slave, people of
the house, wife
wlito to leave, to start
wei (wEyo) to let
weko to give
welo to travel
wen, dwen when?
wen his father
wero, wero to be angry
weto to squander
wich-wat, wit head^ top,
iv mo -win bird
wito to arrive
ivok outside, bush
won we. us
ivono to cheat
worb to send
wot-wodi house, hut
ivo-ten pi. wo-tdno, wo-
tono small boy
wou (wowo) to make a
ivu you pi.
wumo = rurtio to finish
wun you pi.
ya to be
yabo to search
yano to insult
ydn I, me
yat-yen tree, medecine
yaw well, quietly, just
yech-yet belly, middle,
yejo to sweep [amidst, in
yena to be
yeto yat to climb a tree
?y^o to reach
yeyo to believe, to trust
yfryo to be able ; can ;
generally used in im-
yl by, to, towards
yi you sing. nom.
yiebo to open
yiego to carry, to bring
yigo to become
y/n you sing.
3/1^0 to receive
yoc?o to find, imp. yiti
ywbno to cry, to weep
able, to be- i/eyo
abuse v. chayo
ache v. ramo
adze n. doro-dori
all beii, bvne
ambassador n. cJn&ak
amidst^/, kele; dyer;yech
and ka, ki
angry, to be wero
animal n. lai
approach v. wano
arise v. diibdo
arm n. bat-bat
arrive v. wito
ashamed, he is- wije layd
ask v. py&jb
back n. kivom-kdm; a. ban
bad rach: to be- rbnb
be v. fa, ba, bMo, i/ena, ya
bear a child nwblo
beat v. gvjo, fbdo
because ama, ma, mar;
become v. logo, yigo
beg v. kwacJw
begin v. drag q
behind chdn, nach, ban;
to be- chwono
believe v. yeyo
bell n. okot-bkot
belly n. yecli-yet
big duon; to become- dono
bind v. twbjo
bird n. wino-wm
bite v. Jcdjb
black, to be- lojq
blossom v. kogo
blossom n. see flower
board n. pam
book n. ivarib
boy n. nal
bread n. kwen
breast n. kor
bring v. M/o/ kanb, dwai
brother n. omyau
buffalo n. ogik-ogik
bug n. jor-jor
build v. gMb, gvrb
burn v. ly%lb
bush n. ivbk, fal
butcher v. nalo
buy v. neawq
call v. chwolby chivoto
can v. yeyo
care for v. kdro
carry v. tyetb ; fedo, yiego
carve v. gwedb ; to a boat
catch v. mago
chair n. kwom-kiibmi
cheat v. chamb, ivono
cheek n. fino-finl
chief n. jagb, jak
child n. na-mvoli
churn v. pwbcho
clay n. labo
climb v. yeto
cock n. otwon-otbn
come v. W, 6m, 6|no
come from kalb
confused, to be mumb
consider v. gano
continue v. chiffo, chogb
cool, to become- libo
copy n. ga
country n. fbte
cow n. dean-dbk
crawl v. mulb
create v. chwajb
crocodile n. ndn-ridm
cry v. ywbnb
cultivate v. purb
cut v. TIO^O, nudb
dance v. chonb
deceive v. wono
denie v. femb
despise v. rnanb
destroy v. duro feti
die v. tb, tbu
difficulty; to be in- ddlb
dig v. kono
disappear v. ivdiib
divide v. fanb
do v. gogb
dog n. gwbk-gubk
dress v. riigb
drink v. madb
drive away v. jbgb
dry v. dweno
dura by el
ear n. yit-ylt
early, to come- molo
eat v. ch&mb
egg n. tono-ton
elephant n. lyecli-liecli
embrace v. kwakb
enclosure n. gbl
escape v. b&db
excited, to be- kono
exist v. nut
eye n. ivan-nin
face h. nim, bblb-bbl
far lau, to be- lawo
farm n. fwodo
father wi; his- wen
fear v. bbkb
feather n. bb&r
female n. mat-mail
fence n. kal, gbl
fence in v. bagb
fetch water romb pi
field n. fwodo
fight v. ?mkb; n. Un
find v. yodo
finger n. IwMo-lwtt
finished, be- rttmb, tamo;
fire n. mach
fish n. recho (rejb)-reclil,
fish v. mayo
fish- spear bet
flee v. pfrrb
fly v. p&rb
flower n. bkok-bkbk
foam n. 060^
food n. gin-chdin
foot n. tyvlb-tyel
forbid v. mtino
form v. chwajb
formerly chdn, otyenb
forward m dl
fowl n. gyvnb, gyeh
fox n. ogwok-ogokl
frog n. ogwal-ogwell
full, to be- fanb
game n. Mi
gather v. clwnb
give v. mujo, w~eko, tpto
go v. A-^Wo
goat n. dyel-dyek
good ddch' to be-
goods n. jam
goose n. okwek-bkwak
grass n. lumb
ground n. fen
halt v. kwomb
hand n. chyenb-chyen
hasten v. jwano
hat n. tdk-taki
hate v. manb
have v. da
he e, ye s en
head n. wich-wat
heal v. intr. noA;o
hear v. lino
heap up v. clibnb
heaven n. mdl
help v. kwbnb,- kbrio
hen n. gyenb, gyeh
herd v. kivfryb
heron, the blue- bgwbrb-
hew v. nbtb
hide v. fdnb
hoe n. kw^ro-kwtrl; v. puro
hold fast v. mitb
home n. pach-myef
honour v. gano
horse n. kywi-kyen
hot let; to be- Iznb
house n. icot-wodi
how, how much ddi y edi
hunger n. kecli
hut n. wot
hyena n. otiuon-otwom
I yfiy ydn
if kd logo
insult v. yaiio
jackal n . ogwok-ogbkl
just now tin
kick v. gw%jb give jo
kill v. nago
king n. rit-ror
kiss v. numb
knead v. chagb
knee n. chun-clion
know v. najo ; not to-
lame v. kwbmb
language n. dok-dok
late, to be- chwono
laugh v. n&tb
leave v. watb
leave, to take- naclib
left, to be- dbno
let v. ivei, weyb
lick v. numb
lie n. todb
lie v. budo
lies, to tell- fido
lift up v. tmo
light a fire kodb
lion n. nu-nuwi
little, a- ?iofc
live v. nEnb
long, to be- bar
look v. nVno
lost, to be- wdnb
louse n. nwdgo
male n. chwou, jal
male animal n. 6tw6n-6tbn
mann. nate-tyen; dan-tyen;
= male: jal-jok
mat n. odek-udikl
matter n. kwop
meaning n. ty%lb
meat n. rino
medecine n. ydt-yen
merry, to be- nsto
metal n. nyen
middle n. yech-yet, kel,
milk v. nyeto
mix v. cliabo
money n. nyen
morning n. mol
mother n. mio
mountain n. kit-kiti
mouth n. dok-dok
much nMo, gir
mud n. labo
name n. nin
neck n. yet-yiet
night n. uwar
noise, to make a- won
not fa, fate
not yet nuti
offspring n. nwolo-nwoli
open v. yiebo
ox n. wdt-wat
pain v. k&gb, kajo, ramo
paper n. wano
part n. Ibno
perplexed, to be- rnumo
person n. nate-tyen
pierce v. toyo
pig kune don
place n. ken, ka, kun; v.
play v. tugo [chibo
pluck v. funo
posterity n. nwolo-nwoli
pot n. fuk-fuki; tabo
pour v. kbno
praise v. pwojo
pray v. kwachb, lamo
present, to be- nut
presently dndn, tin
property n. jam
pull out v. futa
put v. chibo, klto
python n. n ale-nail
rabbit see hare
rain n. kot; rain v. kot e
ram n. omvok-oriwdk
receive v. yito
reconcile v. mero, repo
recover v. bbdo
red kwaro ; to be- chego
refuse v. kyedo, fyemo,
region n. Ibno
remain v. chogb, ddno,
repeat v. cliigo
reside v. gedb, gvro
return v. duogo
ring n. giv&lo-gwvl
ripe, to be- chego
rise v. dii&do; of the sun:
river n. nam [tulo
river- bank gat-gat
road n. yo-y^t
roan - antelope n. omoro-
rock n. kit-kiti
run v. rmb
sack n. see bag
say v. kobo_ 9 ko
search v. yabb
see v. lidb y 1Mb
seed n. nwolo-nwoli
seize v. inago
send v. wdrb
shallow to be- dwenb
shave v. lyelo
shoe n. ivdro-ivar
show v. nuto
sick a. da jwok
sickness n. jwok
side n. Ionb 9 bute
sin n. brok-brbk
skin 11. t&u-lani, del-de_I 9
slave wat ban
sleep v. ?^??o
snake n. twol-tpU
some, someone rnvko-mbko
somebody 11. nate-tyen
son wat) wat-wati
speak v. kobo
spear n. ton-tbn 9 v. chwbbb
split v. kago
spoil v. rfyfio
spoon n. fal-fet
squander v. ivetb
stay v. bMo
sticks n. Ion
stone n. kit, ktti
stop v. chunb
stranger n. obwbno-bivono
suck v. dodo
surpass v. Jodo
sweep v. ye jo
sweet a. medb
table n. pam
tail n. yiep
take by force kabb
take v. kwaiio
talk n. kwop; v. kobo
teach v. fivdnb
temples n. tnnb-tdm
that eni 9 acha
that, in order- kifa
them ge, gen
there ka, clime
these ak 9 agak
they ge s gen
thigh n. ram-ram
thin, to be- givalb
think v. rumo, ganb
this an, eni
throw v. balb
thus kink, kindh [duon
time n. k&kd; old kake
tired, to be- budo
to-day tin, de chan tin
top n. wich, mdl
torch n. kwbro
torn, to be- fyet
touch v. nwalb
travel v. ivelo
treat v. g~eto
tree n. ydt-yen
troubled, to be- budo
trust v. yeyo
us wd, wo, icon
very chare, chet
vex v. d&nb
village n. pach-myer
voice n. chwak
wag v. teivo
walk v. chatb
wall n. doro-dor
want dwdtd, chamo
war n. len
wash v. Iwbgo
water n. pi
wat er-b u ck anwd k-a nwa ki
way n. yo-yH
we wd, wo, won
weed v. pbnb
weep v. ywbno
well, to be- dbjb
wet, to be- nebb, tec ho
when wen, dwen ; con], ken
where agon, ken
which a, amen ano-orib;
white tar [rel. md
white man obwbnb-bwono
why re, ere, kifano
wickedness n. brbk-brok
wind n. ybmb
wish v. dwdtd
wizard see doctor
woman dachb-man; ddkdu
work v. gdgb
worth, to be- myerb
wound n. ken-let; v. kweyo
write v. gwMb
wrong, to be- ronb
yard n. kdl-kali, gbl
year n. run
you sing, yi, yin
you pi. wu, wun.
The Sounds. Pa s e
1. The consonants 1
2. System of the Consonants .... 3
3. The Vowels 3
4. System of the Vowels 4
5. Long Vowels 5
6. Diphthongs 5
7. Interchange of Sounds . 6
8. The Intonation 6
9. Examples for Intonation .... 7
10. Accentuation . 8
11. The Plural of Nouns 9
12. Means of Forming the Plural ... 9
13. Genetive 11
14. Objective Case . 12
15. Gender 12
The Personal Pronoun.
16. Absolute Form . . 13
17. Connected Form 13
18. Objective Form 14
19. Possessive Form 14
20. Poss. Pr. as a Substantive . . . .15
21. Interrogative Pronouns 15
22. Relative Pronouns . 16
23. Demonstrative Pronouns 17
24. Reflexive Pronoun 19
25. "Myself" 19
26. Adjective 20
27. Adjectives used as verbs . . . .21
28. Comparison . . 21
29. Numerals 22
30. Ordinal Numbers 22
31. The Verb 2224
32. The Verb with Object . . . 2526
33. The Passive Voice 26
34. Example for the Passive .... 28
35. Verbal Noun 28
36. Noun Agent 28
37. Negation , . 29
38. 39. Auxiliary Verbs 29
40 a. List of Verbs 3031
41. Adverbs 32
42. Conjunctions 32
43. Prepositions 32
44. Interjections 33
II. SHORT SENTENCES 3349
III. TWO BIBLE-TEXTS 5058
14 DAY USE
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OCT 2 8 1996
University of California