Wenja Language: janha, janhas, janman-kwa

Smarkaka salwa!  Pra samkway (@Eevy) Twitter-ha parcha: “Sakwamans sa mi-janha-dajri. Kwayshim Winja kurpashna santayta, pracham? Kwati janmanis Winja-ha warha?” Shaja, traya dajris warshta iti : janha, janhas, janman-kwa.

Hey everyone!  Earlier someone (@Eevy) wrote on Twitter: “Next month it will be my birthday. Can you send me a bracelet Wenja please? How to talk of birth in Wenja?”  For this reason today there will be three words : janha “to be born”, janhas “family, tribe, clan; community”, and janman “birth, lineage, descent”.

These words are of course related to each other. To use each word in a sentence: Palhu mansi pa janham.  “I was born many moons ago.”  Winja.  Masi-hasar.  Masi-janhas.  “Wenja.  Our blood.  Our tribe.”  (The first words of the game.) Nawashnas janman shlan-shlangwi.  “The birth of the baby was a very easy one.”

The PIE root that these words were based on is found widely throughout the Indo-European languages.  PIE *ǵenh₁- ‘to be born’, which is precisely Wenja janha. We see this root in English kin, Latin genus, and Greek génos, as well as various other words related to being born : genetics, primo-geniture, generous (originally meaning ‘of noble birth’), etc.

To return to Eevy’s request : how do you say “Happy birthday to you”?  Su janha-dajri tiyi — literally, “good born-day to.you”.  And if you were to do a Wenja birthday song?

Su janha-dajri tiyi

Su janha-dajri tiyi

Su janha-dajri kashyan Eevy-yi (add -yi if the name ends in a vowel; -i if a consonant)

 Su janha-dajri tiyi

 (Nu pal-palhur…)

Tu sakwan prasti!