Awakatek language

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Awakatek
Native toGuatemala
RegionHuehuetenango
EthnicityAwakatek
Native speakers
9,610 (2003 census)[1]
Mayan
Official status
Recognised minority
language in
Regulated byAcademia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala
Language codes
ISO 639-3agu
Glottologagua1252[2]

Awakatek is a Mayan language spoken in Guatemala, primarily in Huehuetenango and around Aguacatán.[3] The language only has around 9000 speakers, and is considered vulnerable by UNESCO. In addition, the language in Mexico is critically endangered, with only 3 elderly speakers left as of 2000.[4]

Awakatek is closely related to Ixil and the two languages together form the sub-branch Ixilean, which together with the Mamean languages, Mam and Tektitek, form a sub-branch Greater-Mamean, which again, together with the Greater-Quichean languages, ten Mayan languages, including K'iche', form the branch Quichean–Mamean.

The Awakatek people themselves refer to their language as qa'yol, literally meaning our word.

Phonology[edit]

Vowels[edit]

Front Back
short long short long
Close i /i/ ii /iː/ u /u/ uu /uː/
Mid e /e/ ee /eː/ o /o/ oo /oː/
Open a /a/ aa /aː/

Diphthongs[edit]

There are four diphthongs: ay /aj/, ey /ej/, oy /oj/, uy /uj/.

Consonants[edit]

Bilabial Alveolar Postalveolar Retroflex Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal
Normal Palatalized
Plosive Normal p /pʰ/ t /tʰ/ k /kʰ/ ky /kʰʲ/ q /qʰ/ ' /ʲʔ/
Ejective p' /pʼ/ t' /tʼ~dʼ/ k' /kʼ/ ky'/kʼʲ/
Implosive b' /ɓ/ q' /ʛ/
Nasal m /m/ n /n/ nh /ŋ/
Fricative w /v~f/ s /s/ xh /ʃ/ x /ʂ/ j /χ/ h /ʜ/
Affricate Normal p /ɸʰ/ tz /t͡sʰ/ ch /t͡ʃʰ/ tx /ʈ͡ʂʰ/
Ejective tz' /t͡sʼ~dzʼ/ ch' /t͡ʃʼ~dʒʼ/ tx' /ʈ͡ʂʼ~ɖʐʼ/
Flap r /ɾ/
Approximant l /l~ɺ/ y /j/ w /ʍ/

References[edit]

  1. ^ Awakatek at Ethnologue (19th ed., 2016)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Aguacateco". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ Cabral, Ernesto Díaz Couder (2001). "Culturas e interculturalidad en Guatemala". Archived from the original on 2010-02-15.
  4. ^ "UNESCO Atlas of the World's Languages in danger". www.unesco.org. Retrieved 2017-10-11.