Maya language verbs, adjectives & noun forms (with pronouns (I, you, “my”, “your”, etc.))

The Mayan language has a very interesting way of conjugating verbs is very similar to the way that most European languages (like Spanish, Russian, Italian) do. Expressing an adjective using these forms uses a different system then the one for verbs and nouns. Saying “I am/You are hungry”, for example (e.g. “wi’ijen, wi’ijech”, would only use suffixes at the end to express that you are hungry.

The system for verbs is a little more complex and works like a quase-circumfix (a sort of “suffix”, but surrounding the initial word expressed, but in plural it is a full circumfix) in that to say “my door” or “his door” you would say it with “in” (my) or “u” (his) in the first position, and “otoch” (house) would be in the middle, and then the ending suffix, so the forms would come out as “in wotoch” or “u yotoch”.

Plural forms like saying “our house” or “their house” would surround the entire word like “in wotocho’on” and “u wotocho’ob”. There are additional rules depending on if the word begins in a consonant, or ends in a vowel but we will cover this in future blog posts. This is the general declension of forms in Mayan pronouns.


Regular adjective forms in Maya

Pronoun Word (“high”, “tall”)
Tene (I) ka’analen
Teche (You singular) ka’analech
Leti’e (He/she) ka’anal
To’one (We/us) ka’analo’on
Te’exe ka’anale’ex
Leti’ob ka’analo’ob (final “b” not pronounced)

Regular noun forms in Maya

Possessive prefix Word (“House”)
In wotoch
A wotoch
U yotoch
In (We/us) wotocho’on
A wotoche’ex
U yotocho’ob (final “b” not pronounced)

The same forms used for expressing a state with an adjective (“I am high up”, “I am hungry”) is also used for verbs.

Regular verb forms in Maya

Possessive prefix Word (“To say”)
In wa’alik
A wa’alik
U ya’alik
In (We/us) wa’aliko’on
A wa’alike’ex
U ya’aliko’ob (final “b” not pronounced)

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