Grammar of the New Zealand Language
Of the Consonants
Of the Consonants.
This is the same as the English h.
It is not however known on the western coast of New Zealand to the southward of Mokau, in the district of Taranaki. Its place is supplied by a curious stammer or jirk of the voice. A gentle sibilancy accompanies its pronunciation amongst Ngapuhi, which some speakers erroneously confound with sk.
K has the sound of the English k; as in kill, &c.
M. N. P.
M, N, P, have the same sound as in English.
R has two sounds: (1) rough; as in rain, river, &c. e. g., kahore, rorea, roro, roto.
(2) The second is more soft, and is formed by a gentle jar of the tongue against the palate; so gentle indeed is the vibration, that most foreigners pronounce it like d or l, as in raro, ruru, rimu, pouaru, pari, muri, mariri, koiri, korikori, kouru, maru.
This is a letter which few Europeans prouonce correctly. It is not pronounced like the t in temper, tea, &c.; but rather like the sharp th of apathy, sympathy, Athens, apothecary. Those who watch a native's tongue while pronouncing this letter, will find that the rule for attaining this sound is, to apply the tongue, not to the root, but to the top of the teeth, and hardly emit a.
Has two sounds, one simple, as that in wind? &c., e.g., wai, water, waka, a canoe, ware, a plebeian.
2. An aspirated w, as in when, where, &c.; whai, follow, whare, a house, &c.
The speaker should be careful, in uttering this sound not to separate the n from the g, as is sometimes done by foreigners. The n and g intimately coalesce, and those who have learned to pronounce the French encore will find no difficulty in catching it. The following rule will, we trust, help the beginner.page 9
Press the middle of the tongue to the roof of the mouth, near the throat, and simultaneously relax the pressure, and pronounce na. Of course care must be taken that the tip of the tongue does not touch the palate.*
Following is a table setting forth a few of the variations in pronunciation of the leading dialects of New Zealand.
It will be observed that the name of a place is employed to denote the dialect for which that place and its vicinity are remarkable.
|Tatou||Tatou||Tatau||Tatau||Tatou & Tatau||Tatou|
|Matou||Matou||Matau||Matau||Matou & Tatau||Matou|
|Ratou||Ratou||Ratau||Ratau||Ratou & Tatau||Ratou|
|Koro & Korua||Korua|
|Koutou||Koutou||Koutau||Koutau||Koutou & Koutau||Koutou|
|Taua or Tao||Taua||Taua||Taua|
|Maua or Mao||Maua||Maua||Maua|
|Raua or Rao||Raua||Raua||Roua|
|Hei||Hei||Hai||Hai||Hai & Hei||Ei|
|Kei||Kei||Kai||Kai||Kai & Kei||Kei|
|Maoa||Maia||Maoa||Maia & Maoa|
|Hohou||Whawhau||Hohou & Whawhua||O-ou|
|Heoi||Heoti||Heoti||Eoi & Eoti|
|Kua||Kua||Koua||Kua & Koua||Ku|
See also the letters ng and h.