[FAQ]Mayan X - How to Pronounce

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Normando
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 07:02:59 (permalink)
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Linda in Houston,
You may very well be correct. And your example follows the rule of the original thread where X is followed by a vowel. Problem now is that most of the Mayan speakers whom I talked to get the general rules do not have computers or ?. Hummmm. Much happier most of the time I believe. When giving them a ride at times; I have asked them repeat the big long words you find as names of many of the small villages, some with several syllables and several X's and they just let the name spill out effortlessly.
[8|] Can someone who is now in the Yucatan and joining us through Internet Cafe talk to some Mayans from the center of the Yucatan or Quintana Roo working at your Hotel/Condo,etc. give us a definite ruling here.
Normando
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John in DC
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 08:42:33 (permalink)
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Regarding the "aa" that often appears in the final syllable of Yucatec Mayan words, I've often heard it with what linguists call a glottal stop between the two "a"s. Thus the "sh-ACK" pronunciation of Xaac. It's actually a very very slight break in the pronunciation, but it serves an important purpose. In Mayan, the accent is 99.5 percent of the time on the last syllable. Dropping the tiniest pause into the middle of a one syllable word keeps that speech rhythm intact. Sometimes the break is explicit (as in Sian Ka'an) and other times it just gets thrown in for good measure.

Another thing to consider about Mayan is that there are hundreds of dialects, so none of these rules is hard and fast. I believe Yucatec is the most widely spoken, and of course the most likely to be encoutered in Quintana Roo (keen-tan-A ro-O).

Soliman Bay ~~ Playa

#27
Normando
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 11:21:47 (permalink)
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John in D C
Thanks for the great information. I have never heard the Mayan double aa explained that simply or concisely before. Speaking of dialects, I have read that there were 23 mayor Mayan dialects in the Yucatan P. alone at the time the Spanish came or maybe it was during the time of the Caste wars. and of course their were many more dialects spoken in lands further south.
[8|]For those wanting a little more nformation on the topic -borrowed from Munda Mayan -online

MAYA: MILLENNIAL LANGUAGE OF THE AMERICAS
Maya is still spoken throughout the Mundo Maya, just as it was 3,000 years ago. Large parts of the indigenous communities in Belize, parts of Honduras and Guatemala, and the Mexican states of Chiapas, Tabasco, Campeche, Yucatan and Quintana Roo speak Maya dialects.

Maya is a linguistic family that can be roughly divided into two major language groups: the proto-Guatemala-Yucatan group, heard in the southern highlands of Guatemala and part of the Yucatan Peninsula; and the proto-Chiapas group, spoken in the highlands of Chiapas, the lowlands of Tabasco, and in regions ranging from southeastern Chiapas, to the Peten in Guatemala and to western Honduras.

Maya adheres to modes of expression common to the majority of native American tongues. It is polysynthetic, meaning that the subject of the verb is always expressed as a pronoun. In terms of vocabulary it differs from all other native Mexican and Central American languages, and so far is not known to be linked to any other language in the region.

Linguists believe that during the Classic Period (A.D. 250-900) the Maya spoke a single tongue. That from the highlands to the lowlands and throughout the Yucatan Peninsula, one language was spoken by all of the people with a few, if any, regional variations.

From A.D. 900-1519, when the northern Yucatan peninsula was invaded by Nahuatl-speaking Indian groups from central Mexico, the Maya language underwent considerable change. However, these alterations had more of an effect on vocabulary than on syntax or grammar.

The Spaniards imposed their language on the Yucatecan Maya over 500 years ago, yet Maya has influenced Spanish more than it has been effected by it. Not only do Maya words crop up in Spanish vocabulary, but also Maya has altered the syntax, phonetics and etymology of Spanish, whereas Spanish has altered Maya only in small ways. The Spanish cultural influence has caused Mayas to adopt Spanish words for things unknown to them before the arrival of the Europeans.

And what is now happening in the Yucatan is also occurring elsewhere in the Mundo Maya in places like the highlands of Chiapas and Guatemala, where Quiche, Cakchiquel, Kekchi, Poconchíi Mam, Pocoman, Tzutuhil, Chorti, Tzetzal and Tzotzil Maya is spoken.
#28
Normando
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 11:56:15 (permalink)
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John, Linda, Steve O or others knowledgeable in the Mayan language. Since we have the rules down fairly good now, who wants to take a stab at a phonetic pronunciation of just a few of the names you would encounter in the villages you pass through around Merida. Yaxkukul - Huxecaman - Dzoyaxche - Muxupip - or Tixkuncheil .

[8|]And now, as we are back in school today; to the perplexing amount of Z's and Y's you will encounter in many Mayan place names. Does anyone have some basic rules for these? And here a just a few of the towns you will go through close to Merida for anyone to try a phonetic pronunciation of... First the great classic ruin just North and east of Merida that I have to relearn how to pronounce again every trip. Dzibilchaltum.. Other tongue twisters might be Tahazibichen, Yoctzonot, or Dzidzantun.
But doesn't it sound like music when spoken by the natives?
Normando
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loconorsk
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 12:21:22 (permalink)
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This has all been xceptionally helpful.

Thanx everyone.

[&:]
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John in DC
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/30 14:58:57 (permalink)
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I've always assumed that the "Dz" in names and words like "Dzibilchaltun" was pronounced roughly like "dg" in "badger," but rolled off a little so it's almost like a soft "j."

Soliman Bay ~~ Playa

#31
Steve O
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/01/31 09:34:19 (permalink)
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I've read that the consonants d, f, g, j, qu, r, and v are generally not found in Maya language and the use of one of these sounds generally indicates that the word is of foreign origin.

I have also been told that in words with the dz, the d is silent and the z is pronounced as an s, Dzul Ha would be sool ha as in fool. Also if a word begins with an X and is the name of a town or place, it would be pronounced as ISH or EESH.

Who knows? You really have to hear it from locals in 3 or 4 different areas.
#32
HhowieE
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 12:50:52 (permalink)
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In light of
XAMACH DAN"S MASSIVE CONTRIBUTION TO THE CAUSE
.............raising money for Sally and Steve...............

I thought we all should have a second look at how to pronounce " X "

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#33
Steve O
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 18:31:10 (permalink)
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Sorry, I have no idea what you mean.
#34
Maggie
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 18:54:58 (permalink)
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Steve O:

What Howie is talking about is that X-Dan (Maya X relationship) donated a sizeable stay at a his property in MX.....to the Pacific NorthWest LG bash which Howie is organizing.......this party will raise money for NACER and Sally of Fundacion Talleres Cero (Tulum)....in the ROO.

Hope this helps!

Cheers-
Mags


For Saskia: Odota, anna minun ajaa se pois!
#35
HhowieE
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 19:00:00 (permalink)
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No apologies necessary..........I am a
Dumbass........nowhere did I tell ya......
ta check out the thread......

Pacific Northwest Locofest
and this..
Howie,
Add a 7 night stay for 2 at Xamach Dos as a prize.
they can check it out before bidding at Xamach Dos
XD


TOO COOL or WHAT
post edited by HhowieE - 2006/02/04 19:57:46

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#36
HhowieE
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 19:02:55 (permalink)
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as always..........thanx fer gettin' my back, Maggie,
you just keep pulling my feet outa my mouth.
I love ya Girl.

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#37
Maggie
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 19:09:25 (permalink)
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Da nada.....I know how much those guppie bites can hurt!!![;)]

And the can make ya a little crazy too.....so cheers to you my incomplete poster amigo!!!! hehehe

Cheers-
Mags
post edited by Maggie - 2006/02/04 20:07:46


For Saskia: Odota, anna minun ajaa se pois!
#38
David Vessey
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 20:51:35 (permalink)
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Hey Normando,
My experience - which is considerably less than yours - is that Mayans are very reluctant to allow an outsider into his culture. At least they have made excuses for not explaining mayan when I asked. They wouldn't even admit to speaking mayan and continued to speak to me in spanish. I do peak spanish. I have spoken to mexicans who were non-Mayan and they have agreed with me. Thanks for your tutelage on the "X", it's very helpful. I had supposed that the Mayan "X" was similar to the "X" in the anglicised chinese - I was close.
Thanks again.
Cheeeeeeeeers, David, dvcheetah@y
#39
Maggie
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 21:11:28 (permalink)
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Question: Why do my Maya friends joke and laugh about the Maya languge being ugly....like not sounding as nice as Spanish......they say Maya is hard to speak...the couple words that I know leave my tounge in knots....so que?

My Dive Masters speak Maya at home....but Spanish (and English when need be) to the guest...but prefer Spanish over Maya....so why?

Cheers-
Mags


For Saskia: Odota, anna minun ajaa se pois!
#40
dorado dave
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 23:02:26 (permalink)
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xmach dan. Who are Gary and Jose? never saw you on site. just curios
plan on stopping in again the 28th of feb. please respond. dave. ps. any
rooms availible that night for old salts/party boys? I'll call gary tomorrow.
thanks. david. easy from pesca maya says hola'. fish the old bridge
if you can't run with el gato norte blanconegra'. se?dave.
#41
XamachDan
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/04 23:17:48 (permalink)
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Dave,
Gary runs the place and Jose works for him, also is his adopted son.
I try to get down there at least once every couple of months.
I'll be there the 28th- 2 cabanas are full but we should be able to work something out for 1 night.
PM me
XD
ORIGINAL: dorado dave

xmach dan. Who are Gary and Jose? never saw you on site. just curios
plan on stopping in again the 28th of feb. please respond. dave. ps. any
rooms availible that night for old salts/party boys? I'll call gary tomorrow.
thanks. david. easy from pesca maya says hola'. fish the old bridge
if you can't run with el gato norte blanconegra'. se?dave.
#42
pitbaby
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/12 08:44:22 (permalink)
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oops




Bahia Principe Coba 4/2006
#43
Xtabentun
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/20 23:01:24 (permalink)
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Figure out how to say it yet?
Xtabentun (Eesh-tabentun)
And now we all know how to pronouce it..............and it's REALLY good with coffee! Mmmm!
#44
Tomas
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/21 07:03:02 (permalink)
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What about the Maya goddess Ixchel? How would one pronounce it?


"Turn up the heat,
chill the rose,
stretch out on the beach
and let those metatarsals play"
(Rev. J. Buffett)
#45
John in DC
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/21 08:34:51 (permalink)
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eesh - CHEL

Soliman Bay ~~ Playa

#46
Duskmirror
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/21 10:45:52 (permalink)
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And Wat about the (XX) beer [8|]
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John in DC
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/02/21 11:20:25 (permalink)
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ORIGINAL: Duskmirror

And Wat about the (XX) beer [8|]


Shhhhhhhh.....[:D]

Soliman Bay ~~ Playa

#48
LaLuz
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/09/27 13:49:37 (permalink)
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Thought it would be informative for
newbies...........it's been a while.

LaLuz

It wouldn't take much for me to up and run....
To another life.............somewhere in the sun.
K. Chesney
#49
norman bradley
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RE: Mayan X - How to Pronounce 2006/09/27 15:41:45 (permalink)
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I am not a linguist either, but have been traveling in Mexico many years. It has been my understanding that in 16th century Spanish, the 'x' was pronounced as an 's'. All of the indigenous words are phonetic equivalents, almost all created in the 16th century by Spaniards. The Indians did not create words with latin letters. So when the Spaniards heard a word with an 's' or 'sh' sound, they wrote it as an 'x'. It seems hard or awkward for Spanish speaking people to start a word with an 's' sound. Example: How do they say Spanish?--Español. Spanish-speaking people I know, when they speak English, and say a word that begins with s--it is often more like 'es'. In a Spanish language group I meet with every other week, we all have Spanish (or hispanized) names. One fellow is Stan. But we never say Stan--it is always Estan.

Whenever I hear a tourist say Xcaret or some such Mayan word with the ES sound for the 'x' (escaret), I always just assume it is their first trip, and they just haven't quite got it yet.

Here's one. Mexico. That has an 'ex'. Where did it come from. We generally call them Aztecs (they were actually from a place called Aztlán). But the Aztecs called themselves the Mexica (may-SHE-kah). Speaking of a people, it would almost always be feminine--ending in 'a'. But a place might very well take the masculine form, thus Mexico. How the 'x' got to be an 'h' sound, I am not sure.

On a slightly different note, I am reminded of a woman from Texas I met in Guatemala one time. She was talking about a place she went. I couldn't figure it out. It sounded like she kept saying Tickle. "At Tickle, we did...(so and so, etc.)..." I couldn't imagine where she had been. I finally figured it out--she had gone to Tikal. (tee-KAHL). I confess, I was a bit tickled.

Norm
#50
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