In this lesson, we'll cover the K'iche alphabet.
The current version of the K'iche' alphabet was proposed by the Academia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala (ALMG) in 2013. To come up with this proposal, the ALMG considered a variety of factors, including: challenges with the existing version of the written language, regional differences in the language, and the context of usage of the language.
This lesson will be split into two sections: consonants and vowels.
The K'iche' alphabet contains 22 different consonants. Consonants can be either simple or compound (containing multiple characters), and either use the glottal (') or not.
The K'iche' alphabet contains the following 5 vowels:
The ALMG established the 5 vowels we use today in the 13-2013 agreement. To do this, they modified the Governmental Decree Number 1046-87 (established in November 23rd of 1987), which had previously defined the alphabet with 10 vowels (some with dieresis).
In summary, the K'iche' alphabet contains a total of 27 letters: 22 consonants and 5 vowels:
Now, let's practice!
It is important to notice that some symbols that are used in Spanish have been modified and are utilized in the K'iche' language as well. For instance, the glottal (') can be used on its own as a consonant.
There are 19 sounds in the K'iche' alphabet that are identical to the Spanish alphabet, while 8 are different.
Up next you can hear these sounds by clicking the speaker adjacent to the word. These are only a few examples of the complexity that the glottal provides to words in K'iche'.
As you can hear, the glottal (') phonetic purpose is to elongate the pronunciation followed by an abrupt stop. The examples above can help you practice with the pronunciation. Don't forget to practice!Greetings