Tutorial on how to write your name in cherokee!
ᎣᏏᏲ ᏧᎾᎵᎢ! (Osiyo tsunalii or Hello friends)
Ever wanted to know how your name would look in ᏣᎳᎩ ᏗᎪᏪᎶᏙᏗ? (Tsalagi Digohwelodohdi or Cherokee syllabary)
Cherokee is infamous for its strange yet cool syllabary along with it's one man creator, so here is a short tutorial on how to translate your name into ᏣᎳᎩ.
I have been a cherokee student for a while so I want to promote the syllabary and the language and also introduce a fun little activity here.
So first of here are the syllabics (These may not appear on your phone, Try a computer)
Ꭵ-v (Pay special attention to this one, as it is a nassalized "u" like in the english word r(u)ng or s(u)n. Nassalized means it is sounded through the nose)
Nothing!-mv (Does not exist or is obselete)
God did that take long to type! Now alot of these seem ridiculous even preposterous! I mean I must have made an error, are you kidding me?!? Is that a 9, 6, and 4? Don't be fooled, the inventor of them ᏎᏉᏯ(The way most speakers spell it today) or sometimes spelled ᏍᏏᏉᏯ(the way he signed it) (Sequoyah), mushed up a bunch of symbols from otherr systems of writing and edited them, made up his own, or based them off of ancient languages. Originally he thought about making it much like chinesse with many symbols.
"But there is so many!" you may randomly shout out alone, well fear not, unless you are a cherokee you probably wont have to use most of these. Even in words, some of this letters are extremely rare or never used at all.
Special vowel sounds:
We have already gone over that wierd "v" sound but here are the rest of the vowels.
A as in the a in"father," E as in the e in "they," I as in ee in "Reed" O as in o in "bone," U as in the oo in"boom"
In Cherokee names, vowels are ALWAYS pronounced essentially the same , unlike in english. "But the vowels in my name don't make these sounds!" you might add, all you have to do is choose the one it sounds to closest in your name, which most likely will not be how it is spelled. Here is a common example used for teaching: Laila="lay-lah" or LE LA in cherokee or ᎴᎳ. If its pronounced lie-lah then use LA, I, and LA again. Or in cherokee ᎳᎢᎳ. The beauty about this is that there is no one way to spell a name, but no matter which you choose, it will sound essantialy the same.
This was shone above when we phoneticaly spelled out Laila as "Lay-lah". This is why cherokee makes more sense than english, because we don't use extra uneccesary letters, since everything is spelled as it sounds. If you have any extra letters in your name, just make it one, or if it is not pronounced, get rid of it entirely. For exampe my name Tommy would be "Ta-Mi" or ᏔᎻ. That "c" in Cindy would be pronounced like in s.
In Cherokee, two different consonant sounds may be spelled the same way!
An example of this is how KE, KI, KO, KU, and KV= GE, GI, GO, GU, and GV or TO, TU, and TV=DO, DU, and DV. TS, DS, J, and CH are all written the same in Cherokee. So another common example isGenie (pronounced jee-nee) as a Cherokee name, you should spell it with the two characters TSI and NI in Cherokee or ᏥᏂ.
Substititions for non existant consnants:
The english sound B, F, P, R, V, X, Z, SH, or TH don't really have an equivalent in cherokee so here is how we can fix that. It's a tradition to replace these sounds with "qu". So another common example is Rebecca phonetically could be spelled quay-quay-ga or as in cherokee ᏊᏊᎦ. Here are some more ...
sh can be substituded with an S sound
Th is usually replaced with T
R is sometimes replaced with L instead of QU
The English letter combination KR (or CR, or CHR) is also replaced with QU. So chriss could be said "Quiss"
"But what if my name has syllables ending in consanants?!"
The english sound s is the only con in cherokee than can stand alone. The simple fix for this is just adding and "i" sound. If your name is Allan it coul be spelled A-LA-NI with the "i" being silent or as in cherokee ᎠᎳᏂ. Also for females only, some people add an "a" instead of an "i" . The "a" however IS PRONOUNCED. So Regan could be LE GA NA or ᎴᎦᎾ.
This is all you need to know! Good job, post your name in cherokee or any name in the comments and I can check it if youd like. Also, my nick name is Anthony so that is a challange. If we break it down it would be "A NI TO NI" or ᎠᏂᏙᏂ! I'm not replacing the "th" because my name is usually said like "AN-TO-KNEE". Good luck!
Also I don't know any Duolingo commands, but I will learn and make this post more fancy later!
In the meantime you can check out my other post on cherokee words for nations and try to translate them (some are tricky!)
Thanks alot m8, was looking for this. Wanna try your name or let me do it for you?
so "ka-na-li"? Are you a girl? I can't tell becausue the "a" in N"a" could have been added if your name was pronounced without it like "Kanli".
Oh even better! Very good pronounciation and using l instead of r and adding the scilent "i". Very good job ᎧᎾᎵ!
Sounds right to me! Good job If your name is pronounced "Jeh-see" or as in cherokee JE SI
Good job replacing the sh with an s and nice vowel pronounciation! Depending on how your name is said, it could also be ᎠᏏᎵ or ᎠᏎᎵ (If it was Ash-e-lee), but since you chose ᎠᏍᎵ your English name is probably said like "Ash-lee". So good job!
I'll start if off with an example
Madison= "Ma-di-Sa-na" or "Ma-di-Sa-ni"
Cherokee: ᎹᏗᏌᎾ or ᎹᏗᏌᏂ
Remember not to litteraly spell it out, and that some sounds are not the same as in English
Also If you are on a computer and don't want to copy and paste my syllabics, use a virtual keyboard. For this whole lesson, I used this one here :http://gate2home.com/Cherokee-Keyboard
If you use this one, you have to spell a syllable phonetically like "la" and then it will show it in cherokee, you can not just select the symbol you want.
Fine to! I use an android an don't have a cherokee keyboard on there, so I have to use my computer...
But I know most apple products have a cherokee keyboard in the settings under "Keyboards"
Very nice examples, I wish I had a longer name.
As for ᎨᏊᏴᎡᏂ you are correct!
The reason you used you "Quay" correctly is because the "ey" in your name make that sound. Altough, you wouldn't absolutly need the Yv sound in ᎨᏊᏴᎡᏂ because you already kinda expresed that "y" sound in at the end of "quay". But both are right, I have never heard your name myself so I can't even tell which people sound it out.
Very good job
Ohh! No problem or as in cherokee ᎬᎵᎡᎵᎦ. I don't know cyrillic or whatever its called to, how would you pronounce Дякую!?
Here is one with a common cheroke name "Agasgv" meaning "rain". ᎠᎦᏍᎬ
Very good, Asumming your name is "Ian". Does your name sound like "ee-an" or "ee-en"? If so, I would have use Ꭱ instead of Ꭰ, because we aren't litteraly translating your name by how it's written but how it sounds. And thank you! It is very interesting, and the syllabary is amazing.
Yeah, my name is Iain. It's actually ee-in (like the English word in), but I presume there's not a Cherokee equivalent of that vowel? I can't see it at least. But since the original Gaelic pronunciation of Iain is more like ee-an I went with that. :P Glad you could tell what I was going for :)
Ꮹ-Actually makes more of a "wah" sound so ᏩᏕ would sound more like "Wah-deh" not "way-d" For that ay sound we could just use "weh" because its closer to "Way" than "wah" Make sure to pay attention to the vowel sounds.
So I guess we could use ᏪᏕ, but you are right, that Ꮥ sound is a little "strong" we can replace it with di where the "i" is scilent, which i mentioned in the lesson. Remember, don't translate litteraly, but what it sounds like. So we could also use
ᎬᎵᎡᎵᎦ! (common response to thanks in some regions)
Like I said, eithier is right, but it depends on what you like :)
For j, alot of people us "ts". so ˈjərmən could be like Ꮸ(tsv) with the speacial "v" or mabye even Ꮴ, but you would be better of with Ꮸ. There is actually a Cherokee word for german language/dutch which is ᎠᏓᏥ(a-da-tsi)!
Yeah it is, too bad huh. I learned from a few books and online resources along with mango languages, etc... I don't even know as much as I wish I could because I don't live near many(cherokeees) these days and resources are limited. But i love to teach what i know so others can all learn, and mabye find out more for the rest of us! Plus I don't devote all my time towards cherokee becasue of my other languages, but it's still good to know a good amount and the syllabary because it's just a cool language. I have been studying it for a while or so, but it was totally worth it. I am a big native american language and culture enthusiast.
ᎬᎵᎡᎵᎦ! It did take quite a bit, but It's fun seeing everyone's names! Yes, you did it right ᎡᎹ. Cherokee is kinda complicated, ecspecialy when it comes to tones and pitches and some grammar. It has some stops too, but it's a fun language, and very lovely looking.
Good. Oh you substituted the n in Thanmai with na, so you are a girl yes?
Well, since your name ends in a consonant, and your a boy, we can use ᎶᎦᏂ.
That would be your name in Cherokee :D
Haha, Im glad! The cherokee are glad too. They always tell me "If our language dissapears, than our culture dissapears, and without our culture, we will surely melt away"
I finally got back to see these, and they look awesome! My name would probably be ᎠᏂᏂ for A Ni NI, Or, if pronounced like ending in -ie in English, then just ᎠᏂ for A NI.
I want to try my username... Holly Short - HO LI S O R(li) Ti - ᎰᎵ ᏍᎣᎵᏘ, or HO LI SO R(qui) TA - ᎰᎵ ᏐᏈᏔ
Whew, these are challenging! But it's fun, I can understand what interests you in the language and its writing. What do you think of my names?
They are preety amazing, glad you found the time. Preety good job with ᎠᏂᏂ, so I'm going to assume you are a girl, because then they would be silent. Good job on the second one I think, altough if we looked hard engouh there will probably be another way to do it. Very good job, they both look beautiufl!
Haha, no problem, thanks for participating! My mother tongue is American English, and I was born and raised right here in the states. Altough when I was young, my family always spoke diffirent languages around me, which I think might have had influence on me later. My family comes from mexican descent, and I have always had strong feelings for Native american culture, religion, and language, especiallyMesoamerican (Yucatec, Nahuatl).
That's cool. I'm also a bit interested in Native American cultures, but unfortunately I don't know much about them. Is it hard to find reliable sources on learning about the languages and other stuff? I think I came to appreciate different writing systems when I started studying Quenya (a language constructed by Tolkien and spoken by Elves in Middle-Earth) since there is a specific script for the Elvish languages which even varies a little between them. And I learned how there might not be a corresponding "letter" for a latin one, but they may represent different sounds or clusters of our letters. It is very interesting to learn about them indeed.
Yes I agree, writing systems are my favourite part of languages. In fact it is the whole reason I started learning Japanese and Cherokee long ago. Most native languages actually used to have their own writing system, but use the Latin alphabet now due to their original systems burned in books by european invaders. And yes, resources are limited and I try to teach as much as I can on this site. In fact with my mexican friend, today we are starting a yucatec word of the day.
Sounds fun! I'd like to learn Hawaiian but I'm not starting a new language in a while. I'm trying to grasp German now.. When I got interested in Quenya more than just wanting to know how to say hello, I found out there are many sites that either don't know or don't care what they are doing wrong, and that's why so many are lead to believe half-lies. (Such as mixing languages to make one "Elvish", not doing the pronunciation right, or using the writing system in an incorrect way). And they'll never know anything worth knowing if they don't notice it. So I searched for resources I can trust, and which tell if they're not sure about something that I won't accept it blindly. It is harder but when you want something, you should do it properly or forget it altogether. I'm guessing it might be a bit different with a "real" language, but not far away from these problems. :)
That is great! Maybe one day you even pick up some conversational Cherokee!
Okay, so in real life, my first name is Zoë (pronounced Zo-EE). So, in Cheerokee, that would be ᏉᎢ, or quo-i, because Z is replaced with QU, and then there is the o, and ë is like the i sound, right? And if I were to write "Neon" (Nee-on), the first word in my username, it would be ᏂᎣᏂ, or ni-o-n(i), correct? (I'm a girl but I don't want to add an -a sound to the end of "neon", mostly because it seems to be a gender-neutral name and I find it pointless to make it a female name)