Udmurt language

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Udmurt
удмурт кыл udmurt kyl
Spoken natively inRussia
RegionUdmurtia
EthnicityUdmurts
Native speakers480,000  (2002 census)
Language family
Official status
Official language in Udmurtia (Russia)
Language codes
ISO 639-2udm
ISO 639-3udm
 
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Udmurt
удмурт кыл udmurt kyl
Spoken natively inRussia
RegionUdmurtia
EthnicityUdmurts
Native speakers480,000  (2002 census)
Language family
Official status
Official language in Udmurtia (Russia)
Language codes
ISO 639-2udm
ISO 639-3udm

Udmurt (удмурт кыл, udmurt kyl) is an Uralic language, part of the Permic subgroup, spoken by the Udmurt natives of the Russian constituent republic of Udmurtia, where it is coofficial with Russian. It is written in the Cyrillic script with five additional characters (Ӝ/ӝ, Ӟ/ӟ, Ӥ/ӥ, Ӧ/ӧ, and Ӵ). Together with Komi and Komi-Permyak languages, it constitutes the Permic grouping. Among outsiders, it has traditionally been referred to by its Russian exonym, Votyak. Udmurt has borrowed vocabulary from the neighboring languages Tatar and Russian.

Ethnologue estimates 550,000 native speakers (77%) in an ethnic population of 750,000 in the former USSR (1989 census).[1]

Contents

Alphabet

The Udmurt alphabet is based on the Russian Cyrillic alphabet:

Udmurt alphabet

UppercaseLowercaseTransliteration[2]IPALetter name
Aaa[ɑ]а
Ббb[b]бэ
Ввv[v]вэ
Ггg[g]гэ
Ддd[d]; palatal [dʲ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьдэ
Ееe, ye[je]; [ʲe] when preceded by д, т, з, с, л, or не
Ëëyo[jo]; [ʲo] when preceded by д, т, з, с, л, or нё
Жжzh[ʒ]жэ
Ӝӝdzh[dʒ]ӝэ
Ззz[z]; palatal [ʑ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьзэ
Ӟӟj[dʲʑ]ӟe
Ииi[i]; [ʲi] when preceded by д, т, з, с, л, or ни
Ӥӥï[i]точкаен и, точкаосын и ("dotted i")
Ййy[j]вакчи и ("short i")
Ккk[k]ка
Ллl[ɫ]; palatal [lʲ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьэл
Ммm[m]эм
Ннn[n]; palatal [nʲ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьэн
Ооo[o]o
Ӧӧö[ʌ] ~ [ə]ӧ
Ппp[p]пэ
Ррr[r]эр
Ссs[s]; palatal [ɕ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьэс
Ттt[t]; palatal [tʲ] when followed by я, е, и, ё, ю or ьтэ
Ууu[u]у
Ф1фf[f]эф
Х1хkh[x]ха
Ц1цts[t͡s]цэ
Ччch[t͡ɕ]чэ
Ӵӵtsh[t͡ʃ]ӵэ
Шшsh[ʃ]ша
Щ1щshch[ɕ], [ɕː]ща
Ъ2ъчурыт пус ("hard sign")
Ыыy[ɨ] ~ [ɯ]ы
Ьь[ʲ]небыт пус ("soft sign")
Ээe[e]э
Ююyu[ju]; [ʲu] when preceded by д, т, з, с, л, or ню
Яяya[jɑ]; [ʲa] when preceded by д, т, з, с, л, or ня

Phonology

The language does not distinguish between long and short vowels and does not have vowel harmony.

LabialAlveolarPost-
alveolar
Alveolo-
palatal
PalatalVelar
plainlat.plainlat.
Plosivevoicelessptk
voicedbdɡ
Affricatevoiceless(t͡s)t͡ʃt͡ɕ
voiced(d͡z)d͡ʒd͡ʑ
Fricativevoiceless(f)sʃɕ(x)
voicedvzʒʑ
Nasalmnɲŋ
Approximantljʎ
Trillr

The consonants /f x t͡s/ are restricted to loanwords, and are traditionally replaced by /p k t͡ɕ/ respectively.

FrontCentralBack
UnroundedRound
Closeiɨ~ɯu
Mideəʌo
Opena

Grammar

Udmurt language textbook, 1898 (in Russian)

Udmurt is an agglutinating language. It uses affixes to express possession, to specify mode, time, and so on.

Lexicon

Depending on the style, about 10 to 30 percent of the Udmurt lexicon consists of loanwords. Many loanwords are from the Tatar language, which has also strongly influenced Udmurt phonology and syntax. Words related to technology, science and politics have been borrowed from Russian.

A bilingual sign proclaiming "welcome" in Russian "добро пожаловать, dobro pozhalovat" (upper) and Udmurt "гажаса ӧтиськом, gazhasa ötis’kom" (lower). This picture was taken in Izhevsk, the capital of Udmurtia.

Bibliography

References

External links