Chechen/Printable version


Chechen

The current, editable version of this book is available in Wikibooks, the open-content textbooks collection, at
https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Chechen

Permission is granted to copy, distribute, and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.


Introduction

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Чудигар
Introduction

Welcome to the world of Wikibooks' language guide to learning the Chechen language. You are here either because you have an interest in learning this wonderful ancient and modern language, you are either Chechen or have Chechen blood, you have a passion for Chechnya and/or languages, you are planning to travel to Chechnya, you have Chechen friends and would like to speak to them in their mother tongue, you want to understand Chechen music and culture, or you just want to learn Chechen for the fun of learning a language and just interested. Whatever the reason, you are here because you want to learn Chechen and we are here to help.

Map of Chechnya with surrounding nations and republics in the Caucasus Region

Chechen is a Northern Caucasian language language of the Nakh family. It is the mother tongue of over 1.3 million people all over the world. It is also the vernacular language of the Republic of Chechnya, located in Southwest Russia in the Caucasus and north of Azerbaijan and Georgia. Chechen is a rather old language, and first was written in the Arabic alphabet. It was then written in the Latin alphabet right after the Soviet Union formed. Since 1938, Chechen has been standardised in the Cyrillic alphabet, though some Chechens prefer to write in the Latin alphabet. This book will teach Chechen in the standardised Cyrillic alphabet.

You probably have never heard any language remotely close to Chechen. The closest language to Chechen, and mutually understandable, is Ingush. Another language similar to Chechen is Avar. Chechen is a language composed of strong consonant sounds with a tendency to skip and ignore vowel sounds. (Although, the vowel harmony is somewhat similar to that of Finnish or Turkish). There are many unusual sounds that a speaker of any Indo-European language might be unfamiliar with, or even be taunted by. There are also many influences from Arabic, giving sounds that have an equal counterpart in Arabic (such as хь and ح).

The grammar in Chechen is also really challenging. The verbs do not conjugate like most European languages do. Instead, verbs conjugate according to class and number. The class is a fundamental part of Chechen grammar. This is composed of four different sounds and letters, but we will cover all of this in this book. Do not be turned off by the challenges that await you, just remember that every language is complex, and that when you accomplish the goal of obtaining language knowledge, especially that of Chechen, the feeling is overwhelming.

Read more about the Chechen language

How to use this bookEdit

This book is a free content open source guide in learning the Chechen language. Though it can be edited by anyone, it is also being monitored by the authors and administrators of this book and Wikibooks to strive for 100% accuracy and verification. Do not be discouraged if you want to use this as your primary or even secondary resource in your studies of the Chechen language.

The book is set up in step-by-step lessons which will introduce the language like a classroom setting and similar to a textbook style tutorial. It will commence with the basics of the language, and gradually introduce grammar aspects of the language, rather than give you a bunch of grammar explanations and a massive list of vocabulary to learn on your own. The book is set up accordingly so you can go at your own pace whether you are a fast learner or prefer to take your time.

Use the navigation header above to navigate to the next lesson, a previous lesson, or the pronunciation guide. Also at the top will be audio files for you to use at your discretion. These are very useful if you want to get a hold on hearing and speaking the language, rather than just learning how to read and write.

At the end of each lesson will be small little practise exercises to test yourself on the knowledge you've gain and accumulated in the previous lessons. Do not be tempted to skip over them! It is very easy to just say Oh! I have done enough, I know the answers, no problem at all. Try to work on each question and check yourself. This will only improve your knowledge of the language.

Learning a language is a tough challenge, but with this book, we will try to make it as informative, fun, and motivative as possible to help you learn the Chechen language. A good way to practise is reading the Chechen Wikipedia! Listen to Chechen radio too at Chechenyafree.ru live. You can also listen to daily broadcasts from Radio Free Europe North Caucasus. Аьтто хилла иншАлла!


Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Alphabet

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Нохчийн абат
The Chechen Alphabet

The Chechen alphabet is written in an extended version of the Cyrillic alphabet and consists of 49 letters. Learning the Chechen alphabet is essential if you are serious about learning the language. Listen to the recording and follow along.

Upper case Lower Case Name English
А а ah a (as in father)
Аь аь eah ä (as in cat or in yeah)
Б б beh b
В в veh v
Г г geh g
ГI гI gheh gh (Arabic: غ)
Д д deh d
Е е yeh ye
Ё ё yoh yo
Ж ж zheh zh
З з zeh z
И и ee i
Й й dohts ee y
К к kah k
Кх кх qah q (Arabic: ق)
Къ къ q'ah q' (ejective)
КI кI k'eh k' (ejective)
Л л ehl l
М м ehm m
Н н ehn n
О о oh o
Оь оь urh ö (German: ö)
П п peh p
ПI пI p'eh p' (ejective)
Р р er r
С с es s
Т т teh t
ТI тI t'ah t' (ejective
У у oo u
Уь уь ew ü (German: ü)
Ф ф ef f
Х х kha kh (Arabic: خ)
Хь хь h'a h' (Arabic: ح)
ХI хI ha h
Ц ц tse ts
ЦI цI ts'e ts' (ejective)
Ч ч cheh ch
ЧI чI ch'eh ch' (ejective)
Ш ш sha sh
Щ щ shcha sh'
Ъ ъ cho h'aark hard sign (чIогIа хьаьрк)
Ь ь k'ed h'aark soft sign (кIеда хьаьрк)
Э э eh e
Ю ю you yu
Юь юь yuu yü (German: jü)
Я я yah ya
Яь яь yeh
I I aah (palochka) w, ' (Arabic: ء or ع)

It is a good idea, if you are unfamiliar with the Cyrillic alphabet, to write each letter down 10 times each repeating the appropriate sound as you write it. Try to think of pictures to go with the unfamiliar letters to help you better (such as Ч looks like an upside down chair, making the ch sound in chair).

So, you have seen your first "Chechen challenge", the alphabet. Though it might seem like a lot, it is really the extra signs such as ь, ъ and 1 that are considered a separate letter. Let's break down the alphabet a little to better help you with pronunciation. We will group together letters which sound alike and explain how to pronounce them.

А and Аь (The A-group)Edit

The Cyrillic alphabet with the cursive form of each letter; this is good to know because most writings and computer italics in Cyrillic are in cursive form.

These sounds have English counterparts and are quite familiar to English speakers. А although is a short ǒ sound in English, like in the word, pond (or occasionally, as an a, for example in mall ). Аь resembles more of the English sound, eah, like in the word, sand (the English of England itself, however, has largely lost this sound as it has become identical with the a of father).

Г and гI (The G-group)Edit

There are two ways to produce a g sound in Chechen. The letter, Г, is pronounced just like the English g in the word game. The ГI, however, is a sound unfamiliar in English. If you are familiar with Arabic, French or German, this sound is exactly the same as an Arabic غ, or a French or German r. It is pronounced from the back of the throat, almost like you are gargling. keep in mind that it is not a heavy guttural sound.

К, Кх, Къ, and КI (The K-group)Edit

This group of letters is rather common in Chechen and most Caucasian languages. К is the same as the English k. Кх is a harder sound, similar to the Arabic letter ق. To understand the difference, try to say ka whilst placing your hand in front of your mouth. You will let air out when you say ka naturally, thus giving you the Chechen letter К. Now, try the same thing, instead force yourself not to let air out whilst saying ka. This is the sound for the letter Кх. The letter Къ is the same thing as Кх, except now force a puff of air out whilst saying Кх. This should feel awkward at first as this sound is very unique to Caucasian languages. You should have made a slight clicking noise whilst saying this letter, which is exactly what you want to do. КI and Къ are almost the same, except К1 has more of a glottal stop, which tends to be the purpose of the palochka (1). This is similar to the Arabic hamza ء.

В, Н, and Р (The False Friends)Edit

These letters are all in English, the problem is that they do not look like the English equivalent. For example, В is a v sound, Н is an n sound, and Р is an r sound. The only way to learn this is to just force yourself to get out of the habit of pronouncing every P as an English p sound.

О and Оь (The O-group)Edit

If you are familiar with German or French, this group should be easy for you. O is the same as in English, although similar to Russian, when unstressed, it is a short sound (like hot). Luckily though, unlike Russian, stress always falls on the first syllable in Chechen, with the exception of Russian loan words. The Оь is like the German or Turkish ö, or French oeu. The sound is similar to the ur in the word burn.

П and ПI (The P-group)Edit

П is the same as the English p, one nice way of remembering how the letter П sounds in Chechen and any language using the Cyrillic alphabet, is thinking of the mathematical symbol of pi (π). ПI is a forced sound of p with a small glottal stop. A fun way to try out this sound is to start bouncing your lips fast. Whilst doing this, force out the normal p sound and your result should be ПI.

Т and ТI (The T-group)Edit

Similar to the "P-group", the Т and ТI work the same way. ТI is just a more forced t sound with a little glottal stop. Since a t sound is created with your tongue rather than your lips, you should also feel a less heavy breath when saying ТI.

У and Уь (The U-group)Edit

Like the "O-group", these sounds are similar to German and French also. У is like the English oo. Уь is like the German ü or the French u. Try saying the English u with rounded lips. This should give you the proper sound for Уь.

Х, Хь, and ХI (The H-group)Edit

Another important and challenging group of letters, these consist of essential sounds in the Chechen language. Х is said like a heavy h but with a slight guttural sound. In some dialects of Chechen and even Russian, the Х is said without any gutteral sound, though in some words it is sometime hard to create a heavy h sound without adding even the slightest of a guttural sound. It is the sound of Scottish loch or German Bach. Хь is a heavier sound then Х. In Arabic, this would be the same as the letter ح. This sound is very important to master, because the word for you in Chechen is "хьо". Can you try saying this word? The last letter in this group is ХI, which is a very soft h sound.

Ц, ЦI, Ч and ЧI (The C-group)Edit

Ц is like the English ts in cats (or, for some, the c in silence). Ц1 is the same thing except with a slight glottal stop. Ч is like the English ch in choice. ЧI is also the same thing with a similar glottal stop like ЦI.

ЧIогIа и КIеда хьаьркEdit

In Russian loanwords, ЧIогIа хьаьрк, (Ъ), or a hard sign, indicates that the preceding consonant is not palatalised, whilst a КIеда хьаьрк, (Ь), or a soft sign, indicates that the preceding consonant is palatalised. When learning how a Chechen word is spelt, do not ignore these signs when writing or typing Chechen words.

Ю, Юь, Я and Яь (The Y-group)Edit

Ю, Юь, Я and Яь are just like their counterparts У, Уь, А and Аь except adding a y sound before it.

1 or I (The Palochka)Edit

Cyrillic letter Palochka.png

You might have been wondering why the Latin letter I is written in Chechen letter. In fact, it is actually not a Latin letter in this situation, but a letter that is totally unique in Caucasian languages. This letter is called the palochka. You will see it written sometimes as a I or a 1. In Latinised Chechen, the palochka is normally written as a w or a ', though its sound is a glottal stop when not following a consonant letter.

StressEdit

Stress in Chechen always falls on the first syllable of the word. The only exception is in foreign words and words of Russian and Arabic origin, which tend to carry over the stress rules. Otherwise, when learning a new Chechen word, assume that the stress is on the first syllable.

Silent lettersEdit

Chechen has a lot of letters that are not pronounced and contain much liaison. If you are familiar with French, this aspect should come easy for you. Most of the time, the last vowel at the end of a word is not pronounced. This can become rather difficult for learners of Chechen, but after you gain a nice amount of Chechen vocabulary then learning new words will become easy for you.

Before moving on to the lessons, make sure you know the Chechen alphabet. There will not be any romanised forms of the Chechen words in these lessons, so it is important to know how the alphabet works. Force yourself to read Cyrillic, it is all right if you read slowly at first, that is expected since this is a brand new alphabet to you. Before you realise it, you will be able to read Cyrillic as fast as you can read the Latin alphabet.

Аьтто хилла! Good luck!


Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Lesson 1

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Дарс 1: Хьан цIе хIун ю?
Lesson 1: What's your name?


In this lesson you will learn:

  • your first words in Chechen
  • how to greet someone and tell your name
  • Chechen pronouns
  • how to form basic sentences and the class system
  • about the Islamic influence in the Chechen language

Шун цхьалгIa дешнаш (Your first words)Edit

Stewart-yawn.jpg
кIант
boy

Iraqi girl smiles.jpg
йоI
girl

Bhajji.jpg
стаг
man

Arab market-1.JPG
зуда
woman

Дарсан хIума (Lesson Material)Edit

In these lessons, we will learn how to greet another person, ask how they are feeling, and ask what their names are. We will also be able to tell what our names are and engage in simple conversation.

Маршалла хаттар (Greetings)Edit

Note that the phonetics which are written out for pronunciaton follow English pronunciation rules. The letter ä will represent the palochka, allowing you to make the I sound you have learnt in the Alphabet lesson. This is again temporary, try to read the Cyrillic alphabet instead of the phonetics.

DCM greeting local Imams at the Lamidat of Ngaoundéré.JPG
Armitage and Shujaat Hussein.jpg

How to greet someone:

  • Ассаламу Iалайкум - Hello    (as-sa-lam-u `a-lay-kum)
  • Ва Iалайкум ассалам - Reply to the above greeting    (wa `a-lay-kum as-sa-lam)
  • Салам - Hi    (sa-lam)
  • Ва салам - Reply to the above greeting    (va sa-lam)
  • Маршалла ду хьоьга - Greetings to you (singular)    (mar-shal du hög)
  • Маршалла ду шуьга - Greetings to you (plural, formal)    (mar-shal du shüg)
  • Iуьйре дика йойла - Good morning    (`üür dik yoil)
  • Де дика дойла - Good afternoon    (day dik yoil)
  • Суьйре дика йойла - Good evening    (süür dik yoil)
  • Буьйса декъал йогIийла - Good night    (büüs dek-kal yo-ghil)
  • Девзина хаза хета - Nice to meet you    (dev-zeen khaz khaet)

How to ask about feelings:

  • Муха ду гIуллакхаш? - How are you? (lit. how is your health?)    (mookh doo ghool-lah-qash)
  • Дика ду, баркалла - Fine, thanks    (deek doo, bar-kahl)
  • Бехк ма биллахь - Excuse me    (byekhk mah beel-lahh)

How to express thanks:

  • Баркалла - Thank you    (bar-kahl)
  • Массарна а - You're welcome    (mahs-sahr-naah)

How to exchange names:

  • Хьан цIe хIу ю? - What is your name?    (hahn tse hooh yu?)
  • Сан цIe ... ю - My name is ...    (sahn tse ... yu)

How to say yes, no, and maybe:

  • ХIаъ - Yes    (hah)
  • ХIан-хIа - No    (haa-ha)
  • Хила тарло - Maybe    (hil tarl)
  • Дика ду - Okay    (dik du)

Some other useful phrases:

  • Со кхета - I understand    (soh khaet)
  • Со ца кхета - I don't understand    (soh tsa khaet)
  • Суна нохчийн мотт ца хаа - I don't speak Chechen    (Suna nokh-chijn mott ca kha-a)
  • Суна ца хаа - I don't know    (soon tsa kha-a)
  • A - And    (a)
  • Я - Or    (yah)

Notes

    • The greetings, Ассаламу Iалайкум and Салам, along with their replies, Ва Iалайкум ассалам and Ва салам, are derived from the religion of Islam, and borrowed from Arabic. This is a very special greeting to give to a Chechen, especially if you are not Chechen or Muslim. This literally means Peace be upon you, and can be found in many other languages that have had or still have a strong Islamic influence. Again, you do not have to be Muslim to say this greeting.
    • In Chechen, like many European languages, there are two ways to address a person. There is a singular and plural form (Like in English saying you and you all), then there is also a familiar form and polite form. We have encountered these in the greetings Маршалла ду шуьга and хьоьга. The familiar form, хьоьга, is also the same as the singular form, and is used when talking to people you know well or if you are in a younger generation, used amongst people around your age, or talking to your pet dog or cat. The polite form, шуьга, is used when speaking to strangers, teachers, in business, or people of higher status in the social class. It is also used when talking to more than one person. When in doubt, use the polite form.
    • You probably have been either baffled or "laughing" at the way to say yes and no in Chechen. Indeed, you have read the pronunciation correctly. To say yes in Chechen, it is a quick Ha sound but cut it short at the end. To get the sound, try to just blow out air and whilst your mouth is open, stop your breath from both your nose and mouth. Do this really fast and you have just said Yes in Chechen.
    • To say no in Chechen, it is a little different than yes and a bit softer. If you speak sarcasm, all you have to do is give a fake laugh, (ha ha), but hold the first ha longer than the second. You should realise too that luckily Chechen is not a language to be spoken fast like French, Spanish, or even English. Each word needs to be said clearly in order to be understood. Also realise that Chechens are not used to hearing foreigners speak their language, so you need to really emphasise these sounds that sound weird to us English speakers in order to be understood. So try it again bearing this in mind, Haa-ha.

At this point, you might feel frustrated with this new starting vocabulary and the odd sounds of Chechen. It is important to approach language learning in a positive way, and enjoy it. If you feel frustrated, take a deep breath, take a break, and come back to it. The more you practise and look at something, the more it will become natural. Chechen is not like any language you have probably heard of, so of course it will be different, but remember, the results can be very rewarding. And of course, this is a self teaching course, so go at your own pace. You don't have to go on to the next section or lessons until you feel comfortable!

Грамматика (Grammar)Edit

Chechen grammar is extremely complicated for Indo-European language speakers. There are 8 grammatical cases (if you are unfamiliar with a case system, don't worry, we will cover it in the future lessons). This means that a word will change form or add a suffix depending on its action in the sentence. As of now, we will focus on the more spoken aspect of Chechen whilst covering the basic essential parts of the grammar.

ЦIерметдешнаш (Pronouns)Edit

Pronouns are nouns which substitute other nouns in a certain phrase or sentence. For example, in English pronouns are I, you, he, she, it. In Chechen they are:

English Chechen English Chechen
I Со We Тхо, Вай *
You Хьо You (plural) Шу
He, She, it Иза They Уьш
  • In Chechen there are two ways to say We. These forms are called Inclusive and Exclusive. The inclusive form, Вай, (sometimes pronounced vay depending on the dialect) is used when you are including the listener. (For example: We, both you and me, will go to the store). The exclusive form, Тхо, is used when you are referring to a group which does not include the listener. (For example: We, my friend and I, are going to the store).
  • Note that in Chechen, pronouns are never capitalised unless of course they are starting the sentence. (In English, we always capitalise I in the sentence. Like most European languages, we do not capitalise in Chechen).

Классаш и хоттам (Classes and the copula)Edit

Now that we have learnt the pronouns, we can start building our first Chechen sentences. Before we get into constructing our basic sentences, we need to cover some explanations first in English.

The Class System is something unique in the Chechen language. Instead of having each word fall into a gender category such as masculine, feminine, or neuter, Chechen words each belong to a specific class. These determine the grammatical course of the other words in the sentence, especially certain important verbs. There are 6 classes in Chechen, which we can remember as V Y D Y B B "(to help you remember the order: vyu dyubb)" or В Ю Д Ю Б Б. The good part of this class system is that the chart is very easy to memorise and figure out ways to remember it. The bad part is that there isn't really any pattern to determine the class of inanimate objects.

Let's start with the first 2 classes. These are the easier ones to learn, because they actually do have a similar gender attribute found in languages like English and Finnish. This aspect is called natural gender. Meaning if you are talking about a boy, this boy is obviously masculine, along with uncle, grandfather, man, an American man and so on. These words fall into Class 1 (V - В). If the word refers to a woman, such as wife, girl, aunt, a British woman, these words fall into Class 2 (Y - Ю).

But what does this mean? These will make the Chechen copula, to be. A copula is just a technical linguistic word for a verb. In other words, we are now learning the way to make sentences like I am a boy, he is a man, she is a girl and so on. The words am, is, and are will go at the end of the sentence, just like any other verb in Chechen. So you will wind up saying I boy am, he man is, she girl is. And of course these words will change appropriately to the class.

Now let's take a look at how to say am, is, and are in Chechen for the first two classes. (Note: This is called conjugating a verb).

Pronoun Class 1
masculine
Class 2
feminine
со ву ю
хьо ву ю
иза ву ю
тхо ду ду
шу ду ду
уьш бу бу

We can look at this chart and easily master it. Just remember in the singular (I, you, he, she, it) that ву always refers to masculine and ю always refers to feminine. In the plural, the copula is the same for both classes. We and the plural form of You both use ду and They use бу. That it! You have just mastered your first 2 classes of Chechen! Now let's use them and make our sentences!

Нохчийн предложни (The Chechen Sentence)Edit

The sentence order in Chechen is Subject + Object/Predicate + Verb (SOV), similar to Korean and Japanese. What does this mean? Take note of the following English examples of sentence structure:

English: I am a boy, and she is a girl.
Chechen: I boy am, and she girl is.

This will take some time to get used to. Just keep practising! But now let's start making some sentences in Chechen. Look at the examples if you have difficulty understand the explanations, some people can just learn a language by seeing examples>

Со кIант ву - I am a boy
Иза кIант ву - He is a boy
Иза йоI ю - She is a girl
Хьо зуда ю - You are a woman
Со кIант ву a хьо йоI ю - I am a boy and you are a girl

Why don't you try a few out yourself? How would you say, "He is a man?" Now translate this sentence from Chechen to English: "Хьо йоI ю я зуда ю? Со зуда ю.". Yes, со кхета that these sentences are very elementary, but we start at the basics and we will build on them.

Культура (Culture)Edit

Note that sometimes the Chechen word, оьздангалла is used to mean culture, but культура is more common.

Ислам нохчийн маттахь (Islam in the Chechen language)Edit

Ассаламу Iалайкум (assalamu alaykum!) Do you remember from this lesson what the proper response would be? Ва Iалайкум Ассалам (wa alaykum assalam!) This greeting comes from the Arabic, peace be upon you, which is also the universal Islamic greeting. Chechnya is a Muslim country and the language has been welcoming influence from Arabic, the original language of the Holy Quran and also used in daily prayers. I am sure you have noticed by now the many sounds that come from Arabic are also found in the Chechen language. Besides these sounds, there are a few phrases that you will commonly hear when listening to Chechens speak their language.

Besides the Islamic greeting, Assalamu alaykum, there are a few others you might encounter, such as ЛаилахIа иллаАллахIа, laa illaha illallah. This means "there is no god but Allah". АллахIа, pronounced Allah, is the Arabic word for the monotheistic God. Chechens might also use the word Дала or Дела as well to refer to God, but АллахIа is more common. Another common Islamic phrase would be ИншАллахIа, inshallah, which literally means "God willing". Some words like the word for thank you, баркалла, have totally integrated into the Chechen language and have derived from the Arabic. In a later lesson, we will learn religious vocabulary and more about religion in Chechnya, but for now, it is a good time to understand the Islamic influence on the Chechen people and their beautiful language.

Дика ду! Молодец!, you have done well so far. How do you like Chechen now? Take a break, review what you have learnt, then move on and read a little about Chechen culture and do the exercises. When you are walking in town, in a store, or whatever the place may be around people, try saying to yourself (not outloud, unless you want people staring at you) these simple sentences, like He is a boy, and he is a man.


Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Lesson 2

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Дарс 2: Довзийтахьа тхойшиъ!
Lesson 2: Let's get to know each other!


In this lesson you will learn:

  • learn words for family members
  • how to say where you live
  • how to form the genitive and substantive cases
  • possessive pronouns
  • about Chechen geography

Дарсан хIума (Lesson Material)Edit

In these lessons, we will learn the Chechen words for family members and also how to introduce them. We will also be able to express where we live and ask someone where he or she lives.

Доьзал (Family)Edit

Family icon.png
In Chechnya, like in most places in the world, family is an important aspect to daily life. Chechens are very close to their families. They might also be very curious about your family and background, especially if you are trying out your Chechen skills on them. Let's take a look at some vocabulary relating to family and friends.

We can see that forming family words can be actually quite simple in Chechen. Chechen is a literal and logical language, meaning to say "grandfather", we can just say "my mother's father". Try to see if you can find a pattern with the words given below.

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доьзал - family
адам - person
жима бер - baby
неца - aunt(sister of mother)
дд - ???
ваша - brother
йиша - sister
кIант - son
йоI - daughter
да - father
до -???
шича - cousin
доттагI - friend
майра - husband
зуда - wife
дада - grandfather (father's father)
ненан да - grandfather (mother's father)
де нана - grandmother (father's mother)
ненан нана - grandmother (mother's mother)

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Vocabulary lists are available for Family related words! If you wish to expand your Chechen vocabulary, check out the extensive list of related words.

Довзар (Meeting)Edit

Try out some phrases below with what you learned above!

Иза мила ву? - Who is he?       Иза сан ваша ву. - He is my brother

Иза мила ю? - Who is she?       Иза сан йиша ю. - She is my sister

Уьш муьлш бу? - Who are they?       Уьш сан да-нана бу. - They are my parents

Иза мила ву? - Who is he?       Суна иза ца воьвза - I don't know him

А иза мила ю? - And who is she?       Суна иза ца йоьвза - I don't know her

Хьо мичахь Iаш ву/ю? - Where do you live?       Со Соьлжа-гIалахь Iаш ву/ю - I live in Grozny

Иза мичахь Iаш ю? - Where does she live?       Иза да-нана долчохь Iаш ю - She lives with her parents

Хьан ваша мичахь Iаш ву? - Where does your brother live?       Сан ваша Москвахь Iаш ву - My brother lives in Moscow

Грамматика (Grammar)Edit

In regards to Chechen grammar in this lesson, we are going to learn about grammatical cases and expand a bit more on the pronouns we learned in the last lesson. This all ties together, since we will be learning the genitive case endings for the personal pronouns. If you don't know what that means, you will in a few seconds!

Артикль (The Article)Edit

Real quick, have you noticed something odd about the Chechen language yet? Let me ask you a question, how do you say 'the' or 'a'? Well, you can't! Like Russian, Chinese, and Finnish, as well as many other languages, Chechen doesn't have any indefinite nor definite articles. Therefore, ваша can mean: a brother, the brother or just brother. Don't worry, you will figure out where the articles are needed in translation with the context and enough practice.

Дожараш (Cases)Edit

In plain English, well...we don't really have cases in modern day English. This might be a bit difficult to explain if you are not already familiar with other languages. I am sure you have heard of the subject and object. Cases define what function the noun has in the sentence and changes the word accordingly. In Chechen, there are 8 cases, meaning, 8 different ways a word can change its form by adding or changing letters at the end of the word.

The first case, ЦIерниг дожар, or the nominative case, is the easiest case to learn. Words in the nominative case are in its original dictionary form and act as the subject of the clause in the sentence. Just remember, normal sounds like nominative, and this is the case where the word is "normal", if that helps you remember it.

We don't need to spend a lot of time on the nominative case, so we can talk about the second case briefly, which is Доланиг дожар, or the genitive case. The genitive case represents ownership, similar to our English "mine, yours, his" from "I, you, he". Think of "genetics" to remember the genetive case. In Chechen, the genetive is actually pretty simple to put together. Just add н to the end of the word. If the word ends in a vowel, then add ан or ин. So for example:

ГIала - the city, ГIалан нах - the people of the city, the city's people

We will talk more about the genitive later, as there are some exceptions, like и can be added instead of а, but we'll talk about it later. Just understand what the genitive is at first.

The final case we will talk about today is the substantive case, Хотталург дожар. This case is a locative case in Chechen as it describes "where" something is located. Think of it as the English, in or at. Chechen uses this case to add an ending, ахь, ехь, ах, ех at the end of the word. So:

ГIала - the city, ГIалахь - in the city Мотт - a language Маттахь - in a language

As I said, there are some exceptions, but down the road, you will pick up on how words and vowels change in Chechen. For now, just remember what you learned:

Case Function Ending Example
Nominative standard - гIала
Genitive of, 's -н, -ан, -ин, -и гIалан
Substantive in, at -ахь, -ехь, -ах, -ех гIалахь

ЦIерметдешнаш (Pronouns)Edit

Let's look at pronouns a bit more. Last time we learned I, you, he, she, it and this time we will learn the genitive pronouns, my, your, his, her, its. Just like what you just read about the genitive case, the pronouns will take the ending н.

ЦIерниг дожар со хьо иза тхо вай шу уьш
Доланиг дожар сан хьан цуьнан тхан вайн шун церан

Therefore: сан ваша - my brother, иза сан ваша ву - he is my brother, иза хьан ваша а ву - he is also your brother

Культура (Culture)Edit

Нохчийн географи (Chechen Geography)Edit

Сурт Нохчийчоьн районийн карта оьрсийн маттахь

Chechnya is a small country buried in the mountains of the Northern Caucasus. It shares borders with Dagestan to the east, Georgia to the south, Ingushetia and North Ossetia to the west, and Russia to the north. Azerbaijan is very close to Chechnya as well. There are many mountains in the southern part close to the Georgian border, which are simply called the Caucasus Mountain Range.

The capital of Chechnya is Grozny, or Соьлжа-гIала (Solzh ghala). Grozny is located right in the center of Chechnya. Other major cities in Chechnya are Guderemes (Гудермес), Shali (Шали), Vedeno (Ведено), Argun (Устрада-гIала), and Urus Martan (Хьалхара-Марта). Major resources in Chechnya consist of zinc, oil, natural gas, and uranium, making it an essential area in the region.

There are three major rivers that run through the Chechen territory, the Terek, Sunzha, and Argun rivers. There are no seaports since Chechnya is a landlocked country, but there are highways, railroads, bus routes, and an international airport in Grozny.


Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Quiz 1

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Талламанболх 1
Practice Quiz 1

It's time now to test what you have learned in the past 3 lessons and alphabet. This exam will test your knowledge in the alphabet, vocabulary, grammar, and culture. If you have scored at least more than a 70%, then you should be safe in moving on to the next lessons. If not, you should go back and review the past few lessons and work on the topics that stumped you the most. Good luck, аьтто хийла!

Part I: Language and Alphabet - these questions will test your ability to pick up on the Chechen alphabet.

1 How would you transliterate So khuzakh 'ash vu in Cyrillic?

Хьан цIе хIун ю?
Нохчийн мотт чIогIа хаза бу.
Со кхузахь Iаш ву.
Со хIийнца АшгIабат-гIалахь ву.

2 What sound in English does the Chechen letter, Аь, closely resemble?

"A" as in "apple"
"A" as in "fade"
"O" as in "pond"
"Ab" as in "abstract"

3 What other two letters in Chechen when combined can make the same sound as the letter Я?

уа
ва
ра
йа

4 What would the word, Чудигар, transliterate to in English?

Shudigar
Chudigar
Hydigap
Chydirap

5 What language category does Chechen fall under?

Indo-European, Germanic, North Germanic
Indo-European, Caucasian, Nakh
Caucasian, North Caucasian, Nakh
Semetic, Arabic, Caucasian


Part II: Vocabulary - answer these questions to the best of your ability. Questions that are entirely in Chechen should be responded with the most logical answer or response.

6 Хьо мичахь Iаш ву?

Сан цIе Магомед ю
Со Грозный-ГIалахь Iаш ву
Дика ду, баркалла
ХIaъ, Iаш ву

7 What does "йиша" mean in English?

Father
Sister
Brother
Cousin


Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Vocabulary/Crustaceans

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Искогбергаш - Crustaceans
Нохчийн Ингалсан
искогберг crustacean
иског crayfish
краб crab
креветка shrimp
омар lobster

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Vocabulary/Family

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар


Доьзал - Family
Нохчийн Ингалсан
бер бераш grandchildren
ваша brother
веши йоI niece (brother's child)
веши кIант nephew (brother's child)
да father
дада grandfather (father's side)
де нана grandmother (father's side)
ден ден нана great grandmother
доттагI friend
доьзал family
да-нана parents
де ваша uncle (father's side)
зуда wife
жима бер baby
йиша sister
йиши йоI niece (sister's child)
йиши кIант nephew (sister's child)
йоI daughter
йоьIан йоI grandson (daughter's child)
йоьIан кIант grandson (daughter's child)
кIант son
кIентан йоI granddaughter (son's child)
кIентан кIант grandson (son's child)
майра husband
марйиша sister-in-law
марнана mother-in-law
нана mother
ненан ваша uncle (mother's side)
ненан да grandfather (mother's side)
ненан ден да great grandfather
ненан нана grandmother (mother's side)
неца aunt
нус daughter-in-law
нуц son-in-law
стунваша brother-in-law
стунда father-in-law
стуннана mother-in-law
шича cousin

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар



Vocabulary/Mammals

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Декха дийнаташ - Mammals
Нохчийн Ингалсан
бож goat
вир donkey
говр, дин horse
гомаш buffalo
дахка mouse
дийнат animal
етт cow
жий sheep
жIаьла dog
котам chicken
лергъяхар rabbit
лом lion
маймал monkey
муха дахка rat
пхьагал hare
сай deer
уьстагI ram
хьакха pig
цIоькъа лом tiger
ча bear
цициг cat
цхьогал fox
эмкал camel
борз wolf

Flag of Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.svg Chechen Содержани | Чудигар | Нохчийн абат | 01 | 02 | 03 | Талламанболх 1 | 04 | Хаархаттар