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Trinesian is a Dumic language spoken on three islands off the southeastern coast of Tuysáfa.



  Labial Coronal Dorsal
Voiceless stops p t k
Voiced stops b d g
Voiceless fricatives   s  
Voiced fricatives   z  
Nasals m n  
Liquids   l r  
Semivowel w    


  Front Central Back
Close i i:   u u:
Mid e e:   o o:
Open   a a:  

In the following text, long vowels are transcribed with a circumflex (e.g. â).


Stem alternations

Stems alternate between strong stem (S) and weak stem (W). The stems are often so different that they can be considered suppletive. Only some of the most common words have suppletive strong and weak stems; in others, the weak stem is derived from the strong stem by echoing the stem vowel.


Noun -> Noun:

  • Diminutive W-s
  • Augmentative S-tak
  • a kind of X S-nir
  • sth. related to X S-pin
  • mass of X S-tug
  • Singulative S-sis

Verb -> Noun:

  • Agent W-l
  • Instrument W-s
  • Location W-p
  • Result of action S-nid
  • Verbal abstract S-kas

Noun -> Adjective:

  • quality of X W-s

Noun -> Verb:

  • to make an X S-kad
  • to be an X S-mir
  • to have an X S-lul

Verb -> Verb:

  • to begin X-ing S-tim
  • to stop X-ing S-mub
  • to continue X-ing S-rin
  • to cause to X S-tak
  • to repeat X-ing S-rir

The outputs of these rules are the strong stems, from which the weak stems are formed by echoing the last vowel.


Nouns inflect for number and case and take possessive prefixes. There are two declensions, which, however, differ only in the ergative singular.

1st declension:

  Singular Plural
Absolutive S-0 W-m
Ergative W-k S-muk
Genitive W-nlin S-munlin
Dative W-nra S-munra
Instrumental W-nsin S-munsin

Example: tid, weak stem du- 'man, person'

  Singular Plural
Absolutive tid dum
Ergative duk tidmuk
Genitive dunlin tidmunlin
Dative dunra tidmunra
Instrumental dunsin tidmunsin

The second declension has -g instead of -k in the ergative singular, but is otherwise the same.

Example: kat, weak stem ta- 'animal'

  Singular Plural
Absolutive kat tam
Ergative kag katmug
Genitive tanlin katmunlin
Dative tanra katmunra
Instrumental tansin katmunsin

The local cases are (example wab, weak stem ubu- 'house'):

Singular at to from
at ubunta ubuntan ubuntar
in ubunmi ubunmin ubunmir
on ubunru ubunrun ubunrur
under ubunsin ubunsin ubunsiz
near ubuna ubunan ubunar
beside ubunlun ubunlun ubunluz
Plural at to from
at wabmunta wabmuntan wabmuntar
in wabmunmi wabmunmin wabmunmir
on wabmunru wabmunrun wabmunrur
under wabmunsin wabmunsin wabmunsiz
near wabmuna wabmunan wabmunar
beside wabmunlun wabmunlun wabmunluz

The possessive prefixes are:

  Singular Plural
1st excl. ti- ti-*
1st incl.   ku-*
2nd ma- ma-*
3rd masc. ka-* ka-*
3rd fem. tu-* tu-*

The forms with * trigger a mutation of the word's initial:

  • p > b
  • t > d
  • s > z
  • k > g
  • w > b
  • l > d
  • r > z
  • 0 > g


Pronouns inflect like nouns, with strong and weak stems, though in many instances, strong and weak stems are the same, and where they are different, the difference is not great.

          Strong  Weak
1st excl. ti      ti
    incl. ku      ku
2nd       ma      ma
3rd masc. kan     ka*
3rd fem.  tum     tu*
this      si      si
that      mu      mu
who       win     wi*
what      ran     ra*

The 1st person inclusive pronoun has no singular, but it has a dual which is inflected like a singular.

The asterisked forms trigger the consonant mutation given under "Possessive prefixes" in the suffix.


Adjectives are indeclinable.


Verbs inflect for aspect and a combined category of mood and evidentiality. As in nominal inflection, there are strong and weak stems. There are two conjugations, here called the 1st and 2nd conjugation.

1st conjugation:

             Impfv.  Pfv.
Indicative   S-0     W-w
Subjunctive  W-t     S-was
Hearsay      W-k     S-wak
Inferred     W-m     S-wam
Imperative   W-s     S-was

Example: ka, weak stem ta- 'to talk'

             Impfv.  Pfv.
Indicative   kat     taw
Subjunctive  tat     katwas
Hearsay      tak     katwak
Inferred     tam     katwam
Imperative   tas     katwas

2nd conjugation:

             Impfv.  Pfv.

Indicative   S-0     W-b
Subjunctive  W-d     S-bas
Hearsay      W-g     S-bak
Inferred     W-n     S-bam
Imperative   W-z     S-bas

Example: lap, weak stem pi- 'to drink'

             Impfv.  Pfv.
Indicative   lap     pib
Subjunctive  pid     lapbas
Hearsay      pig     lapbak
Inferred     pin     lapbam
Imperative   piz     lapbas

The antipassive is marked by suffixing -lad to any of these forms.

All forms could be made subordinate by adding the suffix -lis.


The word order in the clause is SOV; likewise, noun phrases are head-final.

Example sentence

Musoz lastid tarmuk ubunmi walanlin sib wun titismibinlin sib kuguw wun sisikliz nisiw.

famous big-man enemy-PL-ERG house-in-at door-GEN without and roof-hole-GEN without imprison-PFV and starve-SUB leave-PFV

A famous chief was imprisoned by his enemies in a hut without any door or roof-opening, and left to die of starvation.


For nouns, the absolutive singular and ergative singular is given; n1 indicates first, n2 second declension. For verbs, the imperfective indicative and perfective indicative is given; v1 indicates first, v2 second conjugation.

  • am mak n1. deer.
  • ad diw v1. to make.
  • ap apak n1. dust.
  • ar rug n2. crow.
  • bis adj. clean.
  • bziz adj. strong.
  • daz adj. green.
  • dus adj. black.
  • dudus adj. cruel.
  • dzas adj. warm.
  • dzis adj. awake.
  • gas adj. long.
  • gis adj. kind.
  • gzas adj. wrong.
  • gzis adj. blue.
  • ib buw v1. to keep.
  • ig gub v2. to jump.
  • in inik n1. salt.
  • în îniw v1. to sing.
  • ip ipik v1. to boil.
  • is isik n1. future.
  • it tib v2. to let.
  • kab kabaw v1. to agree.
  • kabnis adj. ready.
  • kad dag n2. village.
  • kag gib v2. to run.
  • kai kaik n1. sand.
  • kak kik n1. blood.
  • kak kab v2. to wake.
  • kakar krak n1. goose.
  • kal num. 1.
  • kam kamak n1. axe.
  • kan knak pron.he.
  • kân kâmak n1. raven.
  • kân num. 10.
  • kânas adj. serious.
  • kap kpab v2. to bite.
  • kap kpuk n1. sheep.
  • kap kpiw v1. to answer.
  • kar kruk n1. stone.
  • kas adj. slow.
  • kas ksik n1. leg.
  • kas ksik n1. earth.
  • kat taw v1. to talk.
  • kat tag n2. animal.
  • katkas -sak n1. language.
  • kaw kwik n1. world.
  • kaw kawaw v1. to waste.
  • kid kidik n1. pair of ears.
  • kim kimig n2. shirt.
  • kin kaknig n1. duck.
  • kmus adj. loose.
  • knis adj. high.
  • kniw kniwik n1. lizard.
  • klis adj. red.
  • kpaz adj. tall.
  • kpis adj. hollow.
  • krad karda n1. pair of trousers.
  • kradkal -la n1. trouser leg.
  • kris adj. bent.
  • kruk krukuw v1. to thunder.
  • krus adj. hard.
  • ksal -lak n1. squirrel.
  • ksas adj. tight.
  • ksid ksidik n1. pair of legs.
  • kub kubuk n1. brain.
  • kud kuduw v1. to die.
  • kuguk -kuw v1. to imprison.
  • kuk kiw v1. to need.
  • kul klab v2. to give birth (to).
  • kum kmak n1. box.
  • kûn kûnug n2. shadow.
  • kup num. 8.
  • kup kpag n2. tree.
  • kupup kpug n2. night.
  • kup kpuw v1. to wound.
  • kur kraw v1. to live.
  • kus adj. healthy.
  • kus ksag n2. neck.
  • kut kutuk n1. slope.
  • kut ktik n1. moon, month.
  • kut ktuk n1. rod.
  • kuw kwak n1. wood.
  • kwin kwinik n1. snail.
  • lab labak n1. mushroom.
  • lad ladaw v1. to doubt.
  • lal lalak n1. fool.
  • lan lab v2. to work.
  • lan lanak n1. clay.
  • lap pib v2. to drink.
  • las adj. big.
  • lat num. 4.
  • lên lênew adj. to hunt.
  • li liw v1. to be.
  • lilis adj. small.
  • lim limik n1. tear.
  • lis adj. new.
  • luw luwik n1. fly.
  • luz luzuw v1. to enjoy.
  • luz adj. same.
  • mag magaw v1. to rest.
  • main mainaw v1. to smell.
  • ma mak pron.thou.
  • mag magak n1. root.
  • mak makak n1. grain, seed.
  • maktas adj. loud.
  • mal mlag n2. friend.
  • mam mamak n1. mother.
  • mam mamaw v1. to plant.
  • man manak n1. mountain.
  • map mapak n1. sweat.
  • mas masak n1. food.
  • mâs adj. wise.
  • mau mauw v1. to sit.
  • maw mawak n1. war.
  • mî mîk n1. sea.
  • mib mibik n1. hole.
  • mid midik n1. group.
  • mig migiw v1. to hope.
  • mil mlib v2. to force.
  • mil milik n1. force.
  • milwil -lik n1. rain.
  • mimig -gik n1. urine.
  • min miniw v1. to grasp.
  • mip mipiw v1. to grow.
  • mir rak n1. sun.
  • mir riw v1. to smile.
  • miruz adj. beautiful.
  • mis num. 2.
  • mis adj. young.
  • mit mitik n1. ray.
  • miw wag n2. boat.
  • mimiw -wik n1. wind.
  • miziz adj. tired.
  • mlis adj. white.
  • muk kuk n1. fruit.
  • mul muluw v1. to remain.
  • mun mnik n1. shoe.
  • mup mupuk n1. toe.
  • musoz adj. famous.
  • mut tug n2. son.
  • muz muzuk n1. guts.
  • nab nabaw v1. to hear.
  • nad nadak n1. vulva.
  • nad nadaw v1. to hate.
  • nag nagaw v1. to hide.
  • nak nakak n1. skin.
  • nakat -taw n1. to damage.
  • nal nalak n1. country.
  • nânas adj. good.
  • nap napaw v1. to decide.
  • nar narak n1. fire.
  • nar naraw v1. to burn.
  • nas nasak n1. metal.
  • nas nasaw v1. to fear.
  • nat natak n1. tooth.
  • naw nawaw v1. to weigh.
  • nê nêw v1. to shine.
  • nês adj. bright.
  • nid dag n2. daughter.
  • nig nigiw v1. to love.
  • nigs adj. kind.
  • nik nikiw v1. to care.
  • nil nilik n1. fat.
  • nilirs adj. low.
  • nip nipiw v1. to sneeze.
  • nir niriw v1. to get.
  • nis nisiw v1. to leave.
  • niw wab v2. to wash.
  • nud dig n2. sister.
  • nul nuluw v1. to look.
  • nup nupuw v1. to cook.
  • nur nuruk n1. peace.
  • nurnur -ruk n1. pleasure.
  • nus adj. free.
  • pâ pâk n1. sky.
  • pad padak n1. pin, needle.
  • pag pagak n1. bow (weapon).
  • pail pailak n1. mussle.
  • pak pakak n1. pain.
  • pak pakiw v1. to break.
  • pal palak n1. finger.
  • papag -gak n1. drum.
  • par parak n1. grass.
  • pat patak n1. milk.
  • paw pawak n1. ribbon.
  • pî num. 5.
  • pid pidiw v1. to hang.
  • pid pidik n1. hair.
  • pig gak n1. brother.
  • pik pikik n1. bread.
  • pikit -tiw v1. to bake.
  • pil pilik n1. middle.
  • pil piliw v1. to stick.
  • pin pinik n1. hornet.
  • pipig -gik n1. flour.
  • pir num. 3.
  • pir pirik n1. bird.
  • pir piriw n1. to think.
  • pirts adj. mixed.
  • pis pisik n1. path.
  • plis adj. thin.
  • pnas adj. brown.
  • psas adj. safe.
  • pû pûk n1. hand.
  • pud puduw v1. to marry.
  • puk pukuk n1. cloth.
  • pul puluw v1. to blow.
  • pun punuk n1. table.
  • pus pusuk n1. leaf.
  • pwaz adj. grey.
  • râ râk n1. side.
  • rab rabak n1. bridge.
  • rad radak n1. leather.
  • rag ragak n1. band (of people).
  • rau raunak n1. scorpion.
  • rak rakaw v1. to close.
  • ral ralak n1. wasp.
  • ral ralaw v1. to open.
  • rap rapak n1. autumn.
  • rap rapaw v1. to meet.
  • rarad -dak n1. storm.
  • ras rasak n1. horn.
  • rat rataw v1. to move.
  • raw wag n2. basket.
  • raz razak n1. woman.
  • rib big n2. lion.
  • rib ribiw v1. to meet.
  • rik rikiw v1. to learn.
  • ril rilik n1. powder, dust.
  • rims adj. smooth.
  • rin riniw v1. to laugh.
  • rip ripik n1. meat.
  • ripnis adj. secret.
  • rir ririk n1. field.
  • ririr -rik n1. arrow.
  • ris adj. ill.
  • riw riwik n1. year.
  • rub rubuk n1. bee.
  • rud ruduk n1. fog, mist.
  • ruk rukuk n1. hook.
  • rûk rûkuk n1. frog.
  • rum rumuk n1. man.
  • run runuk n1. tail.
  • rûn rûnuk n1. sign.
  • rup rupuw v1. to smoke,
  • rus adj. round.
  • ruw ruwuk n1. ball.
  • sâ sâk n1. head.
  • sab sabak n1. steam.
  • sad sadaw v1. to say.
  • sainas adj. different.
  • sak sakak n1. rat.
  • sal lib v2. to feel.
  • san sanak n1. rice.
  • sap sapaw v1. to end.
  • sas adj. cold.
  • sat sataw v1. to cover.
  • saz sazak n1. eagle.
  • sî sîw v1. to sleep.
  • sig zgak n1. winter.
  • sigig -gik n1. snow.
  • sik skak n1. day.
  • sik skub v2. to sew.
  • sisik -kiw v1. to starve
  • sil lag n2. family.
  • sim num. 6.
  • sim cnj. not.
  • sim sib v2. to come.
  • sim smug n2. ring.
  • sin sunak n1. cow.
  • sinin -nik n1. louse.
  • sip spag n2. earth.
  • sir srik n1. girl.
  • sîs adj. yellow.
  • sisip -piw v1. to fly.
  • sisir -rik n1. snake.
  • sisit -tiw v1. to slip.
  • sit sitik n1. knot.
  • sit sitiw v1. to knot.
  • sitit -tiw v1. to taste.
  • siw siwik n1. worm.
  • skim skimik n1. flea.
  • snis adj. high.
  • spil spilik n1. right side.
  • sput siptak n1. nail (of finger, toe).
  • sris adj. sweet.
  • stis adj. sour.
  • stuz adj. poor.
  • sub subuk n1. island.
  • sud suduk n1. voice.
  • sug suguk n1. power.
  • suk skuw v1. to fall.
  • sul slib v2. to give.
  • sum smig n2. spring (season).
  • sûn sûnuk n1. shame.
  • sur suruk n1. mouth.
  • surur -ruk n1. time.
  • susuk -kuk n1. fish.
  • susur -ruk n1. brush.
  • suw suwuk n1. river bank, shore.
  • tab dbak n1. hammer.
  • tad daw v1. to put.
  • tai tik n1. face.
  • tak tkag n2. knife.
  • tam tamak n1. past.
  • tap tapaw v1. to step.
  • tar tarak n1. enemy.
  • tas adj. late.
  • tat num. 7.
  • tân tânak n1. wall.
  • taw tawak n1. bag.
  • tên tênew v1. to shake.
  • tî tîk n1. wing.
  • tib tibik n1. music.
  • tid duk n1. man, person.
  • tig tigik n1. bug.
  • tik tikik n1. stick.
  • tiklis adj. sharp.
  • tim timik n1. tick (bug).
  • tin tiniw v1. to join.
  • tip tpag n2. horse.
  • tir tiriw v1. to pull.
  • tirkis adj. quiet.
  • tis num. 100.
  • tis adj. quick.
  • tis tsag n2. knee.
  • titip -pik n1. star.
  • titis -sik n1. roof.
  • tipnas -sak n1. iron.
  • tiw tiwik n1. bed.
  • tkus adj. narrow.
  • tmas adj. deep.
  • tnal -lak n1. spider.
  • tôdas adj. dark.
  • tpam tpamak n1. left.
  • tpas adj. flat.
  • tû tûk n1. dog.
  • tub tubuk n1. nut.
  • tud tuduw v1. to use.
  • tug tuguk n1. pot.
  • tul tuluk n1. hoe.
  • tuk tukuk n1. question.
  • tukus adj. true.
  • tul tuluk n1. cloud.
  • tûn tûnuk n1. nose.
  • tup tupuk n1. hat.
  • tus adj. bad.
  • tut tutuk n1. trunk (of tree).
  • tutup -pik n1. soul.
  • tuw twag n2. egg.
  • tuz adj. dead.
  • twir twirak n1. swallow.
  • udaz adj. strange.
  • udid -dik n1. pair of eyes.
  • ug uguw v1. to sense.
  • ul uluk n1. oven.
  • uliz adj. old.
  • um mak n1. heart.
  • um umuw v1. to amuse.
  • unis adj. early.
  • up pug n2. wolf.
  • uris adj. dirty.
  • wab ubus n1. house.
  • wag wagak n1. ant.
  • wai waik n1. honey.
  • wal walak n1. door.
  • wap wapak n1. net.
  • wawap -pak n1. beetle.
  • war uriw v1. to bathe.
  • wat utag n2. arm.
  • waz adj. wet.
  • wib wibik n1. hare.
  • wik wikik n1. apple.
  • wil ulik n1. water.
  • wim umak n1. baby.
  • wul wuluk n1. plant.
  • wur wuruk n1. bear.
  • wuwur -ruk n1. ice.
  • zas adj. certain.
  • Zbur Zubrik n1. The Three Islands.
  • zdas adj. happy.
  • zgan zganak n1. edge.
  • zim zimik n1. hedgehog.
  • zis adj. wide.
  • zis adj. soft.
  • ziz adj. thick.