Crow Pronunciation Guide

Vowels

a

(similar to the "o" in rot)

a

b%alé

wood

a

%akaawé

six

a

is%ahké

mother

a

s%áhpua

seven

a

t%awée

hot (to the touch)

aa

(like the "a" in father)

aa

%a%ashúua

head

aa

%á%ape

leaf

aa

%á%achiwile

milk

aa

b%a%até

bowl

aa

d%a%asé

heart

aa

heht%á%a

but ; except for ; on the other hand; however

aa

shik%á%ake (a)

boy

aa

t%á%aweete

sticking upright

aa

bilaxp%á%ake (a)

people

ea

(no equivalent in English)

ea

b%é%axe

intermittent

ea

d%é%axe

clear

ea

baatd%é%axe (i)

water glass

ee

(like the "e" in cafe)

ee

bal%é%ela

forest

ee

%e%elá

belly

ee

ann%e%él%e%e%ta

healthy

ee

íiwishd%e%ete

free, no cost

i

(like the "i" in bit)

i

%ilíik

to talk

i

%ítch%ik

good

i

%íkaak

to see

i

b%íle

water

ia

(no equivalent in English)

ia

%í%axe

stomach; tripe; first stomach of an animal

ia

b%í%a

woman

ia

ch%í%a

white

ia

akbaal%í%a

doctor

ia

xáax%i%a

bright

ia

óow%i%ak

to show

ii

(like the "i" in machine)

ii

%i%ich%í%ile

horse

ii

bíl%i%iwaxpe

sunset

ii

d%í%ilik

to walk

ii

xaw%í%ia

bad

ii

sh%í%ile

yellow

ii

ch%í%ise

tail

ii

iishp%í%ia

mountain lion

ii

chiwak%í%ia

to pray

ii

ímm%i%ile

to circle, get around something

ii

awann%í%ile

to walk

o before h

("o" can appear as a shortened sound before an "hp", "hk", hch,

o(h)

h%óhpe

loose

o(h)

p%óhpumme

short, or stubby

o(h)

%óhkape

basin

o(h)

%óhchipe

dive, or go under water

oo

(like the "o" in soda)

oo

%ó%otchia

night

oo

ch%ó%ose

gray, or faded

oo

sh%o%opé

four

oo

ah%ó%oh

thank you

oo

shíil%o%oshe

orange

oo

awák%o%oxe

spider

oo

x%o%óxaashe

corn

oo

akbinnaw%ó%o

scientist, sage

u

(like the "u" in tuba, sometimes like the "oo in book)

u

%uhpáko

south; upstream region

u

alak%upé

the taste of something

u

h%uxshé

gloves

u

b%ul%uhpaaché

pear

u

k%uleék

to hold

ua

(no equivalent in English)

ua

b%ú%a

fish

ua

%u%áse

wounded

ua

dátch%u%akaate

muskrat

ua

sh%ú%a

blue

ua

Iil%ú%a  

scar

ua

baaxaw%u%aóoshe

bread

ua

baaax%u%awishé

animal

uu

(like the "u" in tuba, sometimes like the "oo in book)

uu

%ú%uchik

to be dry

uu

al%ú%ute

arrow

uu

d%ú%upe

two

uu

aash%ú%ua

head

uu

d%u%ushík

to eat

uu

bach%u%ukáa

younger brother

uu

akiláak%u%ua

prophet

uu

iiwaanníalit%u%ua

carnival, or festival

word final e and ee

Similar to the "a" in was. Usually this is spelled "e", but also sometimes as "ee".

The pronounciation of final "ee" can change from citation to sentence form. For instance words like daxpitchée {bear} when cited as "word only" are occasionally pronounced closer to the sound of the "a" in cat, but when the word appears in a sentence always has the final shorter "e" sound.

e

hawát%e

one

e

dúupahp%e

eight

e

dakáak%e

bird

e

akaaw%é

six

ee

báash%e%e

boat

ee

daxpitch%é%e

bear

ee

bach%eé

man

ee

búatt%ee

coyote

word final o

("o" can appear as a shortened sound when it is word final)

o

chiaxx%ó

five

o

ah%ó

many

o

kussk%ó

previously

o

báak%o

above

o

dáakk%o

snapping turtle

o

annáahk%o

saddle

Fricatives

x

(no equivalent in English)

x

%xáape

flat

x

%xalaák

it is raining

x

%xa%xúa

all, or entire

x

iá%xassee

snake

x

baapáa%xee

flag

x

bilá%xe  

drum

x

ii%xalaaílitduua

raincoat

x

%xíile

gray

x

a%xéeisaahkee

grandfather

x

iíttaashtee%xaape

jacket

x

%xoó%xaashe

corn

x

úu%xaashuua

deer antlers

xx

(no equivalent in English, compare the differences between geminate "xx" below and "x" above when they occur inbetween vowels)

xx

á%x%xaashe

sun

xx

chia%x%xó

five

xx

akdú%x%xiile

warrior

xx

iiwinna%x%xuuwé

paddle

xx

xalá%x%xe

skinny

xx

xá%x%xishiile

sorrel pinto

h

(like the "h" in hat)

h

%hinné

this

h

%hísshe

red

h

%hoowé

clean

h

ii%háaka

last one

h

ba%haawilé

spring water

s

(Between vowels "s" often has a "z" sound. No equivalent in English)

s

baai%sáate (a)

elder; adult

s

awaa%súua

house

s

chíi%se

tail

s

áhpaa%see

late afternoon

s(k)

chíi%s%kisshe

tailbone

s(k)

i%s%kulé

finger

s(p)

i%s%paxée

elbow

s(t)

bishkii%s%papásshe

bulldog

s(t)

dáa%s%taahele

truthful

s(t)

iiwilíalu%s%tuua

key

s(t)

i%s%téhpe

belly button

s after consonant

(Similar to the "s" in salt)

ks

ilúk%sapiia

ground meat

ks

ak%sée

parent

ps

íp%saataahili

plentiful

ps

Ap%sáalooke

Crow

ts

baawaalaát%satche

book

ss

(Similar to the "s" in salt)

ss

baáhku%s%saa

towards dawn

ss

di%s%súua

dance

ss

ía%s%see

watch

ss

i%s%sóhkape

hoe

sh

(pronounced as ship, between vowels sounds like the second "g" in garage)

sh

%s%hóope

four

sh

%s%hi%s%hía

dirty

sh

páa%s%hua

sticking out; protruding

sh

áa%s%he

river

ssh

(pronounced as sh but spelled ssh)

ssh

biláaki%s%s%he (i)

light; match

ssh

hí%s%s%he

red

ssh

kuala%s%s%híhpe

afternoon

ssh

bacheexu%s%s%hé

raccoon

ssh

du%s%s%húua

chest

ssh

shú%s%s%hua

wild peppermint

ss before consonant

(can be pronounced as "sh" or "s" there is variation between speakers)

ssb

ammaaku%s%sbáailaau

courtroom

ssch

baaku%s%schissáau

inheritance

ssd

ku%s%sdée

go to

ssk

awuú%s%skaatee

inflate

ssp

awá%s%spaachile

push down; oppress

sch

(pronounced closer to the combination of English "sh and ch" than "sch")

sch

awí%s%c%he

tree lichen

sch

da%s%c%hé

tie down, pound

sch

ía%s%c%hile

to buy

sch

i%s%c%hé

hand

sch

dú%s%c%he

take off, open

Stops

k (word initial)

(like "k" in kite)

k

%káale

old woman

k

%kuleék

to keep or hold

k

%kootá

like that

k (between vowels)

(similar to "gy" as in bigyard or "g" in girl)

k

í%kaak

to see

k

a%kaawé

six

k

da%káa%ke (a)

bird; chicken

geminate kk

(similar to "k-k" in tackle)

kk

bili%k%kúhpe

rainbow

kk

bi%k%kée

grass

kk

iiku%k%kúk

to hear, listen

kk

a%k%kummé

male singers, drummers

kk

chilaá%k%kussee

early morning

p (word initial)

(like "p" in pat)

p

%páaxxu

spill, or pour

p

%peelatché

raven

p

%pilaké

ten

p

%póopahte

owl

p

%puushé

striped, multicolored

p (between vowels)

(similar to "b" in but)

p

áa%pe

leaf

p

baatóhka%pe

bowl

p

bítchiiluu%pe

scissors

p

dúulee%pe

jaw

p

shoo%pé

four

p

a%páake

mosquito

p

a%púushe

area between nose and upper lip

geminate pp

(similar to "p-p" in apple)

pp

óowa%p%pe

square

pp

anna%p%píia

fringe

pp

baailúu%p%pe

rubber

pp

baaóo%p%piihche

offer smoke in prayer

t (word initial)

(like "t" in tap)

t

%taláashiile

butter

t

%tawée

hot (to the touch)

t

%tátche

straight, exact

t (between vowels)

(similar to "d" in side)

t

bíakaa%te

girl

t

ischala%taawé

finger

t

iilíilaa%tuua

walker

t

bili%tawée

hot water

t

alúu%te

arrow

geminate tt

(similar to "t-t" in tattle)

tt

búa%t%tee

coyote

tt

í%t%taache

good looking

tt

koo%t%talé

around that time

tt

úu%t%tachia

weasel

ch (word initial)

(like "ch" in chew)

ch

%c%heéte

wolf

ch

%c%hía

white

ch

%c%hóose

faded; grey, pale

ch (between vowels)

(similar "j" in jaw)

ch

ba%c%háxpiluua

game

ch

buluhpaa%c%hé (í)

pear

ch

i%c%hee%c%hé

heel

ch

ishóo%c%he

in front of

k, p, or t (preceded by h)

(similar to "k" in kite, "p" in pat, and "t" in tap)

The "h" is represented by a slight aspirated breath before the consonant

(h)k

ó%h%kape

war bonnet, basin

(h)k

a%h%kúxe

inner ear

(h)k

annáa%h%ko

saddle

(h)k

iáxu%h%ke

fox

(h)p

ikkú%h%pe

hat

(h)p

isté%h%pe

belly button

(h)p

dúupa%h%pe

eight

(h)p

dahkó%h%pe

hollow ground

(h)t

batshúasa%h%te

fork

(h)t

ku%h%tée

right there

(h)t

shóo%h%taa

where

(h)t

he%h%táa

but

ch (preceded by "h")

(no equivalent in English, pronounced as a slight aspiration (or slight fricative "sh") before the sound "ch" as in chew)

(h)ch

é%h%c%he

to know

(h)ch

baaé%h%c%he

intelligent

(h)ch

baachiché%h%c%he

reminisce

(h)ch

i%h%c%hipúa

to jump

(h)ch

dússhi%h%c%he

to touch

(h)ch

iisaxpúata%h%c%hee

bighorn sheep

(h)ch

iispá%h%c%hik

to kiss

Sonorants

m (mm)

"m" is never phrase or word initial and always appears as a "geminate" or double letter "mm" except when followed by "n"

mm

a%m%machúhke

plain, prarie

mm

a%m%mishé

birthday

mm

hée%m%mishe

further

mm

chi%m%mé

to count

mm

kukú%m%mile

watermelon

mm

iichíi%m%maalushissee

locoweed

mm

dú%m%miile

braid, or twist

n (nn)

"n" is never phrase or word initial and always appears as a "geminate" or double letter "nn" except when preceded by "m"

nn

a%n%naschiché

pillow

nn

alíia%n%nee

road or path

nn

a%n%neéleete

healthy, free from disease of sickness

nn

áaki%n%nee

ride (a horse), or straddle

nn

a%n%noopé

hole

nn

baalíi%n%neete

idle

nn

íi%n%nappaau

blood pudding

nn

áala%n%nuxche

forearm

nn

íi%n%nuschiaxissee

continuous bleeding, or hemorrhage

mn

mn

iia%m%naxxitúua

plow

mn

a%m%nía

cliff or bank

mn

há%m%neeta

none, zero

mn

ishta%m%née

tears

mn

a%m%noóshia

foothills

mn

íilaaleeiiwaachika%m%nuua

truck

mn

iiwaaíikshii%m%nustuua

wrench, or screwdriver

m, b, w

"m" can be thought of as an underlying phoneme that is realized in the sounds "b" and "w"

b (word initial)

(like the "b" in bat)

The sounds "b" and "w" are sometimes interchangeable, "b" typically is phrase or word initial and "w" is heard between vowels.
This varies among speakers and the speed of their speech. For example, hinne báape {today, or this day} is frequently heard as hinne wáape.

b

%baawaalaátsatche

book

b

%bálee

money

b

%basáxe

turtle

b

%báako

above

b

%bíawakshe

summer

b

%bishée

buffalo

b

%bíiwe

to swim

b

%bítchiiluupe

scissors

b

%bilé

water

w

(like the "w" in wag)

w

ishka%wuuá

inside (a building)

w

Baaxa%wuaashé

Crow Agency, MT

w

baa%waalaátsatche

book

w

íilaxpa%waakko

upper lip

w

áachi%wile

milk

w

baa%wíawakshishia

all summer long

w

dáa%week

to read

w

xa%wíia

bad

b (elsewhere)

"b" can be found within words when its phrase or word initial form has a prefix ending in "k", "s", "ss", or "t" added to it.

For example, ashí {house} + báakko {upstairs} = ashbáakko {upstairs of house}

b

ak%baachimmé

student

b

ak%baahilé

worker

b

dáak%bachee

son

b

is%baxxée

elbow

b

is%bía

sister or cousin

b

hawass%basée

to run around

b

apúuwat%bishe

ox

b

baawaalaát%baaxpee

bible

b

hut%bishé

windy

n, d, l

"n" can be thought of as an underlying phoneme that is realized in the sounds "d" and "l"

d (word initial)

(like the "d in dog)

This varies among speakers and the speed of their speech. For example, hinne dáake {this child} is frequently heard as hinne láake.

d

%daasé

heart

d

%dáawe

go ahead

d

%dáawiia

three

d

%dée

go

d

%diché

hit, or strike

d

%díile

walk

d

%dusshúua

chest

d

%dúupe

two

d

%duushík

to eat

l

(Similar to the "l in leg, with older speakers the "l" is sometimes more of a tap "r".)

"d" and "l" can be interchangeable, "d" typically is phrase or word initial and "l" is heard between vowels. This varies among speakers and the speed of their speech. For example, hinne dáake {this child} is frequently heard as hinne láake.

l

baa%laásdee

kind

l

daa%láawe

fly (as a bird)

l

ii%láawiia

third

l

bishée%laxpe

leather

l

íi%laa%lee

car

l

biláxii%liche

drumstick

l

ii%líilaatuua

walker

l

ii%lúupe

second

l

chiwáwuu%le

rat

d (elsewhere)

"d" can be found within words when its phrase or word initial form has a prefix ending in "k", "s", "ss", or "t" added to it.

For example, ak {someone who} + disshí {dance} = akdisshé {dancer}

d

ak%daaliché

airplane

d

ak%dúxxiile

warrior

d

ammuúss%dee

to descend

d

báakuss%deek

to go up (bird or airplane)

d

hawass%dáawe

to go around

d

kakásh%dee

re-establish a home

d

aash%dée

to go hunting

d

Akbaatat%día

God

d

baat%déaxe (i)

water glass

d

cheét%daake

wolf pup