Sounds and Syllables
It is important to be able to say words [pronounce words] before learning to read the printed word. Always ask a Noongar person how to pronounce sounds/words. There are some sounds which are not in English but the sound is always constant, unlike in English where one sound may be said a number of ways. E.g. the English ‘a’, as in cat, many and path. Once the Noongar sounds are known, it becomes easier to say/pronounce words. Remember that occasionally there are exceptions to the rules.
A copy of the Noongar Learners Guide can be found here as a free download.
To obtain a copy of the NBLC brochure about linguistic work at NBLC, click here.
Noongar vowel sounds and how to say them
Noongar consonant sounds and how to say them
|rn||ngarna||barn said with an American accent
|-rd||karda||card said with an American accent
|-rt||moort||cart said with an American accent
|-rl||kabarli||whirl said with an American accent
Resources such as this alphabet chart are available for purchase from the Noongar Language Centre
Welcome: Kaya, ngany djoorabiny noonook djinang. (Hello, I’m happy to see you)
Farewell: Noonook boorda djinang. (See you later)
|Naatj?/Naadja/Naadjak? What||E.g: Naatj nidja? (What this?)|
|Ngiyan? Who?||E.g: Ngiyan baal? (Who is he/she?)|
|Naadjil?/Nadjil? Why?||E.g: Nadjil baal koorliny? (Why is he going?)|
|Naatj boola?/Ngalan? How many?||E.g: Naatj boola barna? (How many animals?)|
|Windji?/Windja? Where?||E.g: Windji dwert? (Where is the dog?)|
|Ngiyanaa? Whose is it?||E.g: Ngiyanaa baal? (Whose is this?)|
|Nginda? When?||E.g: Nginda noonook koorliny? (When are you going?)|
- Dench Alan.1994.Nyungar.In N. Thieberger & W.McGregorleds, Macquarie Aboriginal Words Sydney: The Macquarie Library.p.p 173-192.
- Spehn-Jackson, Lois, 2011, Noongar Waangkiny – A Learner’s Guide to Noongar, Batchelor Press.
- Whitehurst Rose. 1997 2nd Edition, Noongar Dictionary, Noongar Language and Cultural Centre, Bunbury WA