Yanomamö is a Yanomam language spoken in southern Venezuela and northwestern Brazil by about 18,000 Yanomami people. There are about 12,000 Yanomamö speakers in Venezuela, mainly along the Orinoco and Mavaca rivers in Amazonas state, and there are about 6,000 in Brazil, particularly in the Yanaomami Indigenous Territory in the states of Amazonas and Roraima along the border with Venezuela.
Most Yanomamö speakers are monolingual, and they do not write their language. However, a way to write it with the Latin alphabet was devised in the 1970s by Jacques Lizot (1938-2022), a French ethnologist. Other spelling systems are available. A Yanomamö translation of the Bible was published in 2012, and there are a number of other publications in and about the language.
Yanomamö is also known as Guaicá, Shamateri, Guaharibo, Guajaribo, Yamomame, Guaica, Yanomame, Yanomami, Shamatari, Cobari Kobali, Cobariwa, Yanomani, Yanomamï, Shamatri or Shaathari. There are two dialects: Western Yanomami (Parima) and Eastern Yanomami (Padamo-Orinoco). The former is spoken in Venezuela, and the latter is spoken in Venezuela and Brazil. Yanomamö is closely related to other Yanomam languages spoken by the Yanomami people. They are not related to any other languages.
All vowels except [ə] can be nasal. They are indicated with a tilde (ã) or an ogonek (ą).
Kõmi thë pë rë përɨprawë rë piyëkëi, he usukuwë thë pë keprou ai thë ã rëamaihã no ã heparohowë, totihitawë thë pë riã rẽ thaɨwehei hamɨ, thë pë puhi tao kãi përɨhiwëha, thë pë puhi kãi katehewëha hawë kama thë pë mashi shĩro përɨhimopë.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
Information about Yanomamö
Page created: 06.12.23. Last modified: 06.12.23
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