Yamaji Yarning

Wadjarri words and pronunciation guide

Of the seven language groups in the Yamaji region, Wadjarri is the most common. Here are some Wadjarri words for you to practice.

Wadjarri Words

(Catholic Education Office of Western Australia, 2000)

Wadjarri English
people
mayu child
yagu mother or aunt
nyarlu woman
yamaji man
body parts
maga head
guru eye
mulya nose
irra mouth
gurlga ear
mara hand
warri stomach
jina foot
animals
duthu dog
marlu kangaroo
guwiyarl goanna
yalibirri emu
environment
baba rain
garangu sun
winda tree
marda mountain
burlga grass
garla fire

*some words have spelling variations not listed her


Wadjarri pronunciation guide*

(emphasis placed on the first syllable)

consonants
b between English ‘b’ and ‘p’ as in ‘spa’ e.g. baba
d between English ‘d’ and ‘t’ as in ‘stay’ e.g. winda, marda
rd as in American English ‘r’ as in ‘bird’ e.g. marda
g between English ‘g’ and ‘k’ as in ‘score’ e.g. guru, garla
j as in ‘jingle’ e.g. jina
ly as in ‘billion’ (never like ‘Billy’) e.g. mulya
rl as in American English ‘r’ as in ‘curl’ e.g. gurlga, marlu, burlga
m as in ‘monkey’ e.g. maga
ng as in ‘singing’ (never like ‘finger’) e.g. garangu
ny as in ‘onion’ (never like ‘any’) e.g. nyarlu
r as in ‘orange’ e.g. mara
rr between English ‘rt’ and ‘d’ as in ‘word’ e.g. yalibirri, warri, irra
th as in ‘width’ (never like ‘finger’) e.g. duthu
w as in ‘owe’ e.g. guwiyarl
y short sound as in ‘papa’ e.g. baba
vowels
a short sound as in ‘papa’ e.g. baba
i short sound as in ‘bit’ e.g. irra
u short sound as in ‘put’ (never like ‘bun&rrsquo;) e.g. guru
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