Pronunciation Guide in Wyandot

Wyandotte Pronunciation Guide

In this guide Wyandot words are written twice, the first time phonetically, the second time in square brackets [ ] an approximation of the pronunciation in English.


Oral Vowels

-a- [ah]

ahahkah [ah-hah-kah]         He quit it.

ahkwah [ah-kwah]               shoe (but not the word for moccasin)

-e- [eh]

kweh                                     hello


[yan-deh-seh-kwah]            birch, birchbark

-i- [as in ‘tipi’ or -ee-  in feed]

yanditih [yan-dee-tee]        It is made strong, firm.

yawastih [yah-wah-stee]    It is good, beautiful.

-u- [as in ‘true’ or the -oo- in food]

uture            [oo-too-reh]             It is cold (weather).

utišraˀ           [oo-tee-shrah-ah]   tea

Nasal Vowels

These vowels are more challenging to the English speaker.  Wyandot has three main nasal vowels.

ą [as with the -an- in the French and English word ‘bouffant’]

ukyesądi [oo-kyeh-san-dee]                     It became easy.

Tayeąndrak [tah-yeh-an-drahk                 Look at me! (Male Prairie Turtle clan name)

ę [as in French ‘chien’ or ‘bien’, or English ‘entrance’ (not pronouncing the -n)]

tižamęh [tee-zhah-menh]   thank you

Amęnye  ire [ah-menh-yeh  ee-reh]        On water, he walks (male Wyandot name of the 18th and 19th century)

ǫ  [as in French ‘bon’ or English ‘tong’]

rǫndaǫ         [ron-ndah-on]        He has as a house.

ętrǫ                [en-tron]                    nine


Wyandotte consonants are mostly pronounced as in English. Here are three whose symbols are probably not familiar to you.

š [-sh- as in ‘shut’.

arahšu          [ah-rah-shoo]         It is a moccasin.

uhšatęh        [ooh-shah-enh]        It carries one on its back, a horse.

ž        [-zh- as in the -s- in ‘pleasure’ or ‘leisure ]

ižukwas [ee-zhoo-kwahs]             It is often windy.

užaˀ     [oo-zhah]                              berry, fruit

ˀ- [This  involves a sound much like repeating the vowel (as in the English un-uh)]

kaˀtuh [kah-ah-tooh]         close to or close by

deˀka [deh-eh-kah] this

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