Orthography for Tłį Chǫ (Dogrib)

The Tłį Chǫ (Dogrib) Orthography .

The phoneme inventory of the Tłį Chǫ (Dogrib) dialects in use by Dogrib Divisional Board of Education.   Listed below this orthography is a chart of the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) symbols for these sounds. 

Screen shot Dogrib

The t and k sounds are affricates [tx] and [kx], rather than plain aspirated stops, in the Dene languages that we have studied. Only the true affricates tth [tθʰ], ts [tsʰ], ch [tᶘʰ] and tł [tɬʰ] are aspirated. You can see and hear this in the examples of these sounds of Tłį Chǫ.

The Tlį Chǫ vowel sounds

There are approximately 5 phonemic vowel qualities in the Tłį Chǫ languages.  The vowels may contrast in tone (High or Low), length (long and short) and nasality (oral and nasal). The Tłį Chǫ languages are 'high tone marked' languages. H tone is the default tone and the L tone is marked on the vowels.  These vowel contrasts are generally found mainly in the stems, and minimal pairs are not always available. Vowel length especially is hard to determine and may be related to the alignment of the tone in the syllable. We have provided examples of the vowels that we have found in our data. Vowel charts of the speakers are here

Contrasts of tone, length and nasality are marked as follows in the orthography:

  • oo   Long vowel  
  • ǫ     Nasal vowel  
  • ò     Low vowel    (High tone is unmarked)
  • ǫ̀     Low nasal vowel 
  • oò   a long vowel with a falling tone. 

Sources online

See also Language Materials

Harvey, Chris (2012) LanguageGeek [website] from http://www.languagegeek.com/

denespeechatlas@rochester.edu  © Joyce McDonough 2012