Lesson Eight

Family and People

In this lesson we will learn some words for talking about your lakinyeri (family members). We will also learn words in Tanganekald ruminyeri (Tanganekald language) to talk about people in general.

Family terms

There are more terms for family members in Tanganekald than in English. In this lesson, we will just scratch the surface of this very complex kinship system.
Here are the terms for parents, grandparents and siblings. Make sure you pay attention to which side of the family you are talking about, for example if the relative is on your mother's side there is another mitji 'name' for that relative compared to your father's side!
lakinyeri family
nangar mother
matjurunu father
pakanu grandmother (mother’s mother)
mutha grandfather (mother’s father)
mutabal grandmother (father’s mother)
mayanawi grandfather (father’s father)
tarti younger brother/sister
kilawi older brother
maranu older sister
Here are the terms for aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews.
nangar auntie (mother’s sister)
ngambanowi auntie (father’s sister)
ngoponowi uncle (father’s brother)
nangari niece (sister’s daughter), nephew (sister’s son)
ngowali niece (brother’s daughter)
ngop nephew (brother’s son)
Here are some sentences using these family terms.
Yari ngomanyi maranu mitji? What is your older sister’s name?
Ananyi maranu mitji Jane. My older sister’s name is Jane.
Minyai tarti ngenta? How many younger siblings do you have?
Ngenepal tartar. Three younger siblings.
Ngomanyi matjurunu yuluki-ru. Your dad is very tall.
Ananyi lakinyeri katjeri. My family is beautiful.
Ngawirri, kinanyi ngoponowi luk korrpi. The boy and his uncle have similar noses.
'my', minyai means 'how many', tarti means 'younger sibling', ngenta means 'you',  tartar means 'three or more younger siblings', ngenepal means 'three', ngomanyi means 'your', matjurunu means 'father', yuluki means 'tall' and the ending -ru means 'very', lakinyeri means 'family', katjeri means 'beautiful', ngawirri means 'boy', kinanyi means 'his', ngoponowi means 'uncle', luk means 'similar' and korrpi means 'nose'.

People words

Here are some words you can use when talking about people more generally.
wulu-meimini old woman
meimini woman
weyatuki young woman
nganayeri girl
yandi-orn old man
nandurri man
biti-manarrki young man (whiskers are just starting to appear)
ngawirri boy
porli child
tjininyeri baby (up to about 5 months old)

Here are some words for referring to groups of people.

meiminu women (two)
meiminar women (more than two)
nandurru men (two)
nandurrar men (more than two)
porlu children (two)
porlar children (more than two)
the -i ending means 'one' so meimini means 'one woman' , the -u ending means 'two' so meiminu means 'two women' and the -ar ending means 'more than two' so meiminar means 'more than two women'. You can add these endings to any of the people words that we've learned in this lesson.

Here are some sentences using these people words.
Meiminar-il karatparaki lakun. The women are weaving baskets.
Nawi porli orni? Whose child is that?
Orni ananyi porli. That is my child.
Ngapa Tanganekald weyatuki. I am a young Tanganekald woman.
Yari yandi-orn mitji? What is that old man’s name?
meiminar means 'women' , the ending -il shows the women are doing the weaving, karatparaki means 'basket (general term)' , lakun means 'weaving', nawi means 'whose', porli means 'child', orni means 'that', ananyi means 'my', ngapa means 'I', weyatuki means 'young woman', yari means 'what', yandi-orn means 'old man' and mitji means 'name'.