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#3976: Official Orthography of the Haitian language (fwd)




From: Guy Antoine <GuyAntoine@windowsonhaiti.com>

I thought it would be useful to send to the list the Official
Orthography
of the Haitian Language, as documented by Windows on Haiti by REKA
(an on-line network for the promotion of Kreyl, the Haitian language)

Some caveats:

1) In an earlier post, Father Michael Graves wrote that no one in Haiti
writes the Haitian language the way we do it on the Corbett list (mostly
the Diaspora).  He speaks for instance of strange little circles on the
"a" that do not even exist on his keyboard.  This may be the fate of
this
document as well, so I want to assure Father Michael that we, from the
Corbett list, are not always as strange as it may first appear (not
always!)
The culprit is in the way that certain e-mail systems interpret the
accented
vowels.  The only sure way to prevent this problem is to capitalize ALL
ACCENTED VOWELS, as in "fowOm KreyOl" in lieu of "fowm kreyl".
What results is an eyesore (in my opinion) but it has the tremendous
benefit
of not getting translated in a totally unpredictable manner from one
e-mail
system to another (sometimes based on user settings).  Oh how I envy the
English language on that score, which was efficient enough to rid itself
of
pesky accents altogether! (with rare foreign word adoptions)

2) In the official document that follows, the English translation,
always
between parentheses, is MINE.  I assume all responsibility for any
misrepresentation, though I exercised care in the translation.

3) Documentation:
- Windows on Haiti: http://windowsonhaiti.com
- REKA: http://www.kreyol.org
- The document without any English translation:
http://www.windowsonhaiti.com/reka/otograf-kreyol.htm
- and to see the Living Haitian Language as written by Haitians
(with PERHAPS fewer mistakes than we ordinarily do when writing
in French or English): http://www.windowsonhaiti.com/bbs/index.sht
(You are all invited to join us, bearing in mind that KreyOl is the only
language used in that forum)

Official Orthography of the Haitian language

According to the law of September 28 1979 and the official orthography,
published on January 31 1980 and signed by Joseph C. Bernard, then
Haiti's Secretary of Education.

Here is the Haitian Alphabet:

a, an, b, ch, d, e, , en, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, m, n, ng, o, , on, ou,
oun, p, r, s, t, ui, v, w, y, z

18 Konsn (18 consonants)
b : bal, debat, kapab
ch : chat, rache, rach
d : daso, kada, gad
f : fal, rafal, saf
g : garaj, bagay, bag
h : ha, branhang, enhen
j : jalou, kajou, raj
k : kad, makawon, avk
l : lavi, pale, fasil
m : malad, enfimite, dam
n : nas, zepina, bekasin
ng : ling, touhing, zing
p : poto, rapadou, pap
r : rat, marasa
s : sik, dousi, sous
t : taso, titato, tt
v : vakabon, lave, rv
z : zaf, raze, raz

7 Vwayel bouch (7 non-nasalized vowels)
a : ase, lat, leta
e : elv, redi, rale
e : s-s, kk, ank
i : istwa, pit, anasi
o : ochan, foli, mato
 : fv, gl, gad
ou : ouvriye, goud, kalfou

4 Vwayel bouch-nen (4 nasalized vowels)
an : anl, zandolit, devan
en : enbesil, pentad, lapen
on : onz, ponpe, pantalon
oun : ounsi, mazounbl, youn

Vwayel-konsn : W  (Vowel-consonant)
wa : wat, lakwa
wan : wanga, lakwann
wete : wete, dwe
wen : kwen, pwen
wi : kwi, piwili
wo : wot, gwo
w : wl, bws
won : wont, fwonte
wou : woule, kwout

Atansyon (Warning)
Wo, W, Won, Wou kapab ekri konsa tou (can also be written as) : Ro, R,
Ron, rou.
Egzanp (examples): rot, gro, rl, brs, ront, fronte, roule, krout

Y
ya : faya, pyas
yan : yanvalou, pyan
ye : peye, katye
ye : ay, soupy
yen : anyen, kretyen
yo : koyo, konfyolo
y : miy, dyl, biyt
yon : pyon, bouyon
you : you, pyout, pay, kay, by, fy, chany

UI
Egzanp: luil, nuit, uit zuit

Ti tir (Dash)
Nou kapab svi ak ti tir, si nou vle, pou maknen yon
mo ak kk fm gram ki vini apre li, tankou (You can
optionally use the dash to join a word with some
grammatical construction that follows it) :
- fm atik defini yo (the definite articles) : "fi-a, ng-la, mouche-a,
fanm-nan..."
- fm adjektif posesif yo (the possessive adjectives) : "papa-li,
pitit-mwen"
- pwonon konpleman retresi yo (the shortened pronouns-complements) :
  "ng-la di-m li te w-m y..."

Apostwf (Apostrophe)
Nou kapab svi ak apostwf pou pwonon sij yo
(You can optionally use the apostrophe after pronouns-subjects) :
"M' vini rele ou epi ou pa vini..."
"Jda pa la, l' al lekl..."
m', n', l', se mo tankou lt mo. (m', n', l', are words like all other)
F nou kite yon ti espas anvan nou kmanse ekri mo ki vini apre a
(You must use a space after them before you write the word that follows)

Aksan (Accents)
Nou svi ak aksan pou f :
e tounen  (e aksan grav)
o tounen 
a devan 'n' tounen n
Egzanp: van, vn / pan, pn

Ka espesyal (A special case)
L oun pati son vwayl 'ou' pase nan nen san pa gen yon konsn-nen tou
pre li, nou mete 'n'. Nou jwen ka sa yo sitou nan mo kreyl ki soti nan
lang afriken.
(When part of the 'ou' vowel is nasalized without a nasalized consonant
next to it, we add a 'n'.  We mostly encounter those cases among Haitian
Creole words that originate from African languages.
Egzanp (Examples): ounsi, ounf, oungan.