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Chontal Maya language

Chontal Maya
Yokotʼan
Pronunciation[jɔʔkɔʔtʼan]
Native toMexico
RegionNorth central and southern Tabasco
EthnicityChontal Maya
Native speakers
37,072 (2010 census)INEGI
Mayan
Dialects
  • Nacajuca / Central Yokotʼan / Central Chontal of Tabasco
  • Tamulte / Eastern Yokotʼan / Eastern Chontal of Tabasco
  • Macuspana / Southern Yokotʼan / Southern Chontal
  • Centla / Northern Yokotʼan / Northern Chontal
Language codes
ISO 639-3chf
Glottologtaba1266[1]

Yokotʼan (self-denomination), also known as Chontal Maya, is a Maya language of the Cholan family spoken by around 37 thousand (INEGI 2010 census) Chontal Maya people of the Mexican state of Tabasco. According to the National Catalog of Indigenous Languages of Mexico-INALI, Yokotʼan has at least four dialects: Nacajuca (Central), Centla (Northern), Macuspana (Southern) and Tamulte (Eastern).

Distribution

The Chontal Maya are concentrated in 159 settlements in 5 municipalities of Tabasco (Brown 2005:122).

Some Chontal settlements near the town of Nacajuca include (Brown 2005:116):

  • El Tigre
  • Saloya
  • Guatacaloa
  • Olcuatitan
  • Tucta
  • Mazatehuapa
  • Tapotzingo
  • Guaytalpa
  • San Simón
  • Tecoluta
  • Oxiacapue
  • Guadalupe
  • El Sitio
  • Tamulte

Some Chontal settlements in the northeastern Centla region include (Brown 2005:116):

  • Cuauhtemoc
  • Vicente Guerrero
  • Allende
  • Simón Sarlat
  • Quitin Arauz (on the Río Usumacinta)

Chontal settlements near Macuspana include Benito Juárez and Aquiles Serdan (Brown 2005).

Phonology

Consonants

Bilabial Dental Alveolar Postalveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Plosive voiceless p t k ʔ
glottalized
voiced b d
Affricate voiceless ts
glottalized tsʼ tʃʼ
Fricative s ʃ h
Tap/Flap ɾ
Lateral l
Nasal m n
Approximant w j

Vowels

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

[2]

References

  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Tabasco Chontal". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Keller, Kathryn C.; Luciano G., Plácido (1997). Diccionario Chontal de Tabasco.

Brown, Denise Fay. 2005. "The Chontal Maya of Tabasco." In Sandstrom, Alan R., and Enrique Hugo García Valencia. 2005. Native peoples of the Gulf Coast of Mexico. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.

  • Keller, Kathryn C. and Plácido Luciano G., compilers. 1997. Diccionario Chontal de Tabasco.

Knowles, Susan Marie. 1984. "A descriptive grammar of Chontal Maya (San Carlos dialect)." Thesis (Ph. D.)--Tulane University, 1984.

"La lengua maya-chontal de Tabasco / [selección de textos y edición, Tomás Pérez Suárez]." 1984. Emiliano Zapata, Tabasco, Mexico : Editora Municipal, H. Ayuntamiento Constitucional (1983-1985), 1984.