A Mangalorean's Blog

Friday, July 08, 2005

Konkani-English Dictionary

Thanks to Mohan Prabhu and Ancy we now have a Konkani-English Dictionary - a pdf file available online!

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Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Konkani Script: More details

More details from Ancy -

Konkani sounds are not the same as the alphabets available in Kannada script or Devnagiri script. But because both these scripts are phonetic scripts most of the sounds can be easily represented.

Roman script is a linear script. There are both advantages and disadvantages in both phonetic and linear scripts.

Consider the basic alphabets in Konkani:

short ^ - ^rdo (ardo/ordo) --> half (sound a in ago)
long ^ - ^rth (arth/orth) --> meaning (sound ea in earth)
(Note that the letter ^ could be also printed as inverted V)

short a - azo --> grandfather (sound a in father)
long a - an --> father (sound a in harm)

short i - kiddi -->worms
long i - mitt --> salt

short u - uzo --> fire
long u - utt --> get up

short e - peto -- Dog
long e - mez --> count or pet --> trunk

rounded e - mez --> table

short o - gobor --> ash
long o - tor --> belfry or modd --> cloud

rounded o - tor --> row mango (ambyache~ tor)

Given above are the basic vowels.
There are equal number of nasal vowels.
According to the new method the nasel sound is represented with the letter ~
Thus placing ~ after above vowels these sounds can be represented.
Also note that these nasel vowels are the speicality of Konkani language and they are only available in Konkani.

Some examples of nasel vowels are:

^~dkar(darkness), a~dllo(blind), a~g (body), i~gllo (charcoal), u~dd (liver) etc

There are lots of diphthong in konkani:

^+i - p^yxe --> money (Note: here x is pronounced as sh in sheet)
short a+i - vaydo --> time limit
long a+i - vaytt --> bad
o+i - poylo --> first one
^+u - p^vli --> Arecnut leaf
a+u - savlli --> shadow

Diphthongs with nasel
^+~+u - s^~vsar --> world
o+~+u - bo~vddi --> roaming

There are lots of other diphthongs both with nasel and without nasel sound.

This is what Fr. Pratap Naik, Director of TSKK was saying in all "Teach Konkani" programmes in Mumbai:

Kannada script is fine for the people of Karntaka. But it can not be accpted as the script for the people residing outside Karnataka.

Thus the choice of script for Konkani are only two
1. Devnagiri script
2. Roman script

Devnagiri would have been the best option for our people to adopt. But some how our peope have not accepted it. Even after trying to impliment it for so many years nothing has changed. People in Mumbai continued in Kannada script and their children could not read Konkani at all.

Even Fr. Pratap had brought out number of Konkani learners to learn Devnagiri script. Thus he has now started to promote Roman script after eliminating errors in the current Roman script. Unless we do something constructively now the new generation will not have the habit of reading and writing in Konkani.

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