Ket is the last surviving member of the Yenisei family of languages. It is spoken along the Yenisei River and its tributaries in Central Siberia. In 2010 there were 210 speakers. The majority of speakers were older adults, and few Ket speakers were raising their children to speak the language. There were no known monolingual speakers. In 2017 there were no remaining fluent Ket speakers.
Ket is also known as Yenisei-Ostiak or Ostyganna qa'. It is related to Yugh or Yug, which became extinct in the 1970s, and Pumpokol, Arin and Kot, which became extinct during the 18th and 19th centuries. These languages are thought by some linguists to be related to the North-Caucasian and Sino-Tibetan languages. Others, such as Edward Vajda, a historical linguist at Western Washington University, believe they are related to the Na-Dené languages of North America.
A World in Words podcast about links between Ket and Navajo
Ket is taught as a subject in some primary schools up to the fourth grade. After that only Russian is taught.
This spelling system using the Latin alphabet was developed in the 1920s and 1930s by N.K. Karger, who publised the first Ket alphabet primer.
This Cyrillic-based system was developed in the 1980s by G.K. Verner and G.H. Nikolayeva.
Information about the Ket alphabets provided by Michael Peter Füstumum
Aden (лат.: silva) turɛ aˀq dajaŋtijin baˀŋ. Aden baˀŋd donamas dɔɣɔt dautaq. Dɛˀŋas tijin aden 7% úsʲaŋ. Aden aqta hutumsʲa dɛsʲaɣɔin hissɨj. Daŋtakan bɛtta ultusin dokot baˀŋdi usʲaŋ. Beˀlin daneŋ daŋtakinka tijiŋ. Daŋtekin ūl hɨˀlam bèd. Aska-balaŋ daŋtekin sinaŋ dɔɣɔtbɛsʲ usaŋ. Eŋŋuŋ turɛ dεˀŋ duɣīn baˀŋ. Eŋŋuŋga bə̄n onaŋ quˀs. Eŋŋundiŋa anar dεˀŋ quˀn tije doldaqin. Omba dεˀŋ eŋŋun tije duɣīn. Koled turɛ qà baˀŋ, bisʲɛŋ dεˀŋ duɣīn. Kolɛtka dεˀŋ ɔnaŋ. Kolεtka eŋŋuŋ ɔnaŋ. Kolɛtka tʌŋdiŋal, ēdiŋal eŋŋuŋ dεˀŋ dubbɛtin. Qaˀj qoˀŋ baˀŋdi usaŋ. Askabalaŋ dɛˀŋ qaˀjŋka dudәˀq. Dɛˀŋ tām-anunin qaˀjŋ aduŋu inam duildәˀq. Koledeŋ qōbka tɨŋalla qūsāl kilometer usaŋ. Kənadeŋ sèl dejaŋolbedin. Būŋ qój aska-balaŋ dejaŋolbedin. Qókdi deˀŋ ássano báŋdiŋa oŋatn.
Sample text provided by Sammy Silvers
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