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[[Image:Ukara cloth.jpg|thumb|250px|An Ukara Ekpe material covered in nsibidi characters.]]
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[[Image:Ukara cloth.jpg|thumb|250px|An Ókárá Ẹ̀kpẹ̀ resist-dyed with nsibidi symbols.]]
'''Igbo''' (Igbo: ''Asụ̀sụ̀ Ị̀gbò'') is a Niger-Congo language spoken primarily in [[Southeast Nigeria|south eastern Nigeria]]. There are between 18-25 million speakers that are concentrated in [[:Wikipedia:Igboland|Igboland]], a cultural region in Nigeria, and its speakers are primarily of [[:Wikipedia:Igbo people|Igbo]] descent. Igbo is a recognised language of Nigeria and is also spoken natively in [[Cameroon]]. There are many different dialects of Igbo which often are not mutually intelligible to other Igbo speakers, for this reason a standard for Igbo called 'Igbo izugbe' has been developed in the later part of the 20th century. Igbo is written in the Latin alphabet introduced by British colonialists and missionaries. Secret societies such as the Ekpe leopard society use the [[:Wikipedia:Nsibidi|nsibidi]] ideograms to write Igbo and other languages around its area of influence. Nsibidi is an ideographic writing system used for over 500 years.
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'''Igbo''' (Igbo: ''Ásụ̀sụ̀ Ìgbò'') is a Niger-Congo language spoken primarily in [[Nigeria]]. There are between 18-25 million Igbo speakers living primarily in [[Southeast Nigeria|southeastern Nigeria]] in an area known as Igboland. Igbo is a national language of Nigeria and is also recognised in [[Equatorial Guinea]]. Igbo is made up of many different dialects which aren't mutually intelligible to other Igbo speakers at times. A standard for Igbo called 'Igbo izugbe' has been developed. Igbo is written in the Latin alphabet introduced by British colonialists and missionaries. Secret societies such as the Ekpe use nsibidi ideograms to write Igbo and other languages around its area of influence. Nsibidi is an ideographic writing system used for over 500 years.
  
Major cities where Igbo is dominant include Onitsha, Enugu, [[Owerri]] (''oh-weh-reh''), [[Port Harcourt]], and Asaba (in Igbo, ''ah-hah-bah'').
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Major cities where Igbo is most spoken include Onitsha, Enugu, [[Owerri]] (''oh-weh-reh''), [[Port Harcourt]], and Asaba (in Igbo, ''ah-hah-bah'').
  
Through the [[:Wikipedia:Atlantic slave trade|transatlantic slave trade]], the Igbo language has influenced many creoles in the [[Americas]], especially in the former British [[Caribbean]] including islands such as [[Jamaica]], [[Barbados]], [[Dominica]], and [[Trinidad and Tobago]]. Variations of Igbo can be found in [[Cuba]] (formally; ''Isuámo''), the island of [[Bioko]] in [[Equatorial Guinea]], formerly known as Fernando Po, and in micro-communities in [[Cameroon]] and Equatorial Guinea. It is also spoken among the recent Igbo migrant communities all over the world.
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Through the transatlantic slave trade, the Igbo language has influenced many creole languages in the [[Americas]], especially in the former British [[Caribbean]], including islands such as [[Jamaica]], [[Barbados]], [[Dominica]], and [[Trinidad and Tobago]]. Variations of Igbo known as Suámo can be found in [[Cuba]]. Igbo is spoken by a significant number of people on [[Bioko]] island in Equatorial Guinea, formerly known as Fernando Po, and in micro-communities in [[Cameroon]] and Equatorial Guinea, and it is also spoken by recent migrants of Igbo descent all over the world.
  
==Pronunciation==
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==Pronunciation guide==
Igbo is a tonal language with a high, mid, and low range. Accents are used to indicate the high and low tones; an acute accent such as 'ó' are used for high tones, and a grave accent such as 'è' is used for a low tone. There are further accents that indicate nasal tones. The lower dotted accent such as 'ọ' is used to indicate a low nasal tone, and an upper dotted accent such as 'ė' is used for a high nasal tone. The trema (¨) such as 'ö' is used for a mid nasal tone. A tilde (~) signifies the closing of the gullet when speaking.
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Igbo is a tonal language with a high, mid, and low range, in addition there are rising and falling tones. Accents are used to indicate the high and low tones; an acute accent such as 'ó' are used for high tones, and a grave accent such as 'è' is used for a low tone. There are further accents that indicate nasal tones. The lower dotted accent such as 'ọ' combined with a grave accent ('ọ̀') is used to indicate a low nasal tone, and an upper dotted accent such as 'ė' or a lower dotted accent with an acute accent ('ọ́') is used for a high nasal tone. The trema (¨) such as 'ö' or a simple dot underneath is used for a mid nasal tone. Other diacritics include the caron (ˇ) for rising tones, the circumflex (ˆ) for falling tones, and the macron (¯) for long vowels.
  
 
===Vowels===
 
===Vowels===
 
Vowels in Igbo are very similar to those in English when there is little tone stress on them. Most of the times vowels in Igbo are written with accents indicating this tone.
 
Vowels in Igbo are very similar to those in English when there is little tone stress on them. Most of the times vowels in Igbo are written with accents indicating this tone.
  
; '''a''' : like 'a' in "f'''a'''ther"
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{|class="wikitable" style="width: 100%; font-size: 0.85em;"
; '''e''' : like 'e' in "g'''e'''t"
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|-  style="background:lightgray; font-weight:bold;"
; '''i''' : like 'ee' in "s'''ee'''n"
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|| vowel
; '''ị''' : low tone nasal 'i'
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|| English equiv.
; '''o''' : like 'o' in "c'''o'''at"
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|| vowel
; '''ọ''' : low tone nasal 'o'
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|| English equiv.
; '''u''' : like 'oo' in "p'''oo'''l"
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|| vowel
; '''ụ''' : low tone nasal ''u''
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|| English equiv.
 +
|| vowel
 +
|| English equiv.
 +
|-
 +
| '''a''' || like 'a' in "f'''a'''ther" || '''e''' || like 'a' in "g'''a'''te" but without the final 'i' sound || '''i''' || like 'ee' in "s'''ee'''n" || '''ị''' || short 'i' like the 'i' in "b'''i'''t" ||
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|-
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| '''o''' || like 'o' in "c'''o'''at" || '''ọ''' ||short 'o' like the 'o' in "d'''o'''g" || '''u''' || like 'oo' in "p'''oo'''l" || '''ụ''' || short 'oo' like the 'oo' in "b'''oo'''k"
 +
|}
  
 
===Consonants===
 
===Consonants===
 
Consonants do not have a tone in Igbo apart from 'n' and 'm' which are the only letters that can be written with accent marks.
 
Consonants do not have a tone in Igbo apart from 'n' and 'm' which are the only letters that can be written with accent marks.
  
; '''b''' : like 'b' in "bit"
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{|class="wikitable" style="width: 100%; font-size: 0.85em;"
; '''d''' : like 'd' in "dim"
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|-  style="background:lightgray; font-weight:bold;"
; '''f''' : like 'f' in "feline"
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|| consonant
; '''g''' : like 'g' in "give"
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|| English equiv.
; '''h''' : like 'h' in "hinge"
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|| consonant
; '''j''' : like 'j' in "jelly"
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|| English equiv.
; '''k''' : like 'k' in "kettle"
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|| consonant
; '''l''' : like 'l' in "limb"
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|| English equiv.
; '''m''' : like 'm' in "mint"
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|| consonant
; '''n''' : like 'n' in "nit"
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|| English equiv.
; '''ñ''' : not in English, but a nasal 'n', sort of like drink
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|-
; '''p''' : like 'p' in "pit"
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| '''b''' || like 'b' in "'''b'''it" || '''d''' || like 'd' in "'''d'''im" || '''f''' || like 'f' in "'''f'''eline" || '''g''' || like 'g' in "'''g'''ive"
; '''r''' : like 'r' in "rent"
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|-
; '''s''' : like 's' in "seam"
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'''h''' || like 'h' in "'''h'''inge" || '''j''' || like 'j' in "'''j'''elly" || '''k''' || like 'k' in "'''k'''ettle" || '''l''' || like 'l' in "'''l'''imb"
; '''t''' : like 't' in "tea"
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|-
; '''v''' : like 'v' in "villa"
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| '''m''' || like 'm' in "'''m'''int" || '''n''' || like 'n' in "'''n'''it" || '''ñ''' || uncommon in English, but sounds like the 'ng' in " 'ki'''ng'''" || '''p''' || like 'p' in "'''p'''it"
; '''w''' : like 'w' in "win"
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|-
; '''y''' : like 'y' in "yield"
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| '''r''' || like 'r' in "'''r'''ent" || '''s''' || like 's' in "'''s'''eam" || '''t''' || like 't' in "'''t'''ea" || '''v''' || like 'v' in "'''v'''illa"
; '''z''' : like 'z' in "zink"
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|-
 +
| '''w''' || like 'w' in "'''w'''in" || '''y''' || like 'y' in "'''y'''ield" || '''z''' || like 'z' in "'''z'''ink" || ||
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|}
  
 
===Common diphthongs===
 
===Common diphthongs===
; '''ch''' : like 'ch' in "'''ch'''eese"
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; '''gb''' : an explosive sound not found in English, but a 'b' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'g'
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{|class="wikitable" style="width: 100%; font-size: 0.85em;"
; '''gh''' : like 'gh' in "'''gh'''ost"
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|-  style="background:lightgray; font-weight:bold;"
; '''gw''' : like 'gw' in Welsh "'''Gw'''yn"
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|| diphthong
; '''kp''' : not in English, but a 'p' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'k'
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|| English equiv.
; '''kw''' : like 'q' in "'''q'''ueen"
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|| diphthong
; '''nw''' : like 'wa' in "wag", but nasal like a baby crying
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|| English equiv.
; '''ny''' : like 'ny' in "canyon"
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|| diphthong
; '''sh''' : like 'sh' in "ship"
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|| English equiv.
 +
|| diphthong
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|| English equiv.
 +
|-
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| '''ch''' || like 'ch' in "'''ch'''eese" || '''gb''' || an explosive sound not found in English, but a 'b' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'g' || '''gh''' || like the greek 'ghamma' when it comes before 'a' or 'o' (a 'h' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'g') || '''gw''' || like 'gw' in Welsh "'''Gw'''yn"
 +
|-
 +
| '''kp''' || not in English, but a 'p' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'k' || '''kw''' || like 'q' in "'''qu'''een" || '''nw''' || like 'w' in "'''w'''ag", but nasal like a baby crying || '''ny''' || like 'ny' in "ca'''ny'''on"
 +
|-
 +
| '''sh''' || like 'sh' in "'''sh'''ip" || || || || || ||
 +
|}
  
 
==Grammar==
 
==Grammar==
Igbo is considered an [[:Wikipedia:Agglutinative language|agglutinative language]]. Igbo grammar generally maintains a subject–verb–object clause order.
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Igbo is considered an [[:Wikipedia:Agglutinative language|agglutinative language]]. A number of affixed phonemes denote the tense of a verb in addition to the other modifications of a verb root; an example using ''òjéḿbà'', "traveller", can be split into the morphemes: ''ò'', pronoun for animate and inanimate objects or "he, she", ''jé'' verb meaning "travel, walk, embark", ''ḿbà'' "town, city, country, foreign lands, abroad" resulting in "he/she/it-go[es]-abroad".
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Nouns in Igbo have no grammatical number and there are no gendered pronouns or objects. Igbo grammar generally maintains a subject–verb–object clause order; ''mádụ̀ àbụ́ghị̀ chúkwú'', "human[s]-[it]is[not]-God", "man is not God". Adjectives in Igbo are post-modifiers, although there are very few Igbo adjectives in the [[:Wikipedia:Closed class|closed class]]; many so called "adjectives" in Igbo are considered nouns, especially when the word is a pre-modifier like im ''ágádí nwóké'' transliterated as "elderly man". Igbo features vowel harmony between two vowels and commonly features vowel assimilation where a preceding vowel influences the articulation (or the elision with /a/) of the next such as in ''ǹk'â'', "this one", analysed as ''ǹkè'' "of" and ''â'' "this". Igbo syllable shapes are CV (consonant, vowel) which is the most common, V, and N which are syllabic nasals, there are also semi vowels like /CjV/ in the word ''bìá'' (/bjá/) "come" and /CwV/ in ''gwú'' /ɡʷú/ "swim".
  
===Social grammar===
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===Addressing people===
  
 
{{infobox|Greeting others|
 
{{infobox|Greeting others|
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'''Formal'''
 
'''Formal'''
; ''kedu'' (''kay-DOO'') : the most common formal greeting equivalent to 'hello'
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; ''kèdú'' (''kay-DOO'') : the most common formal greeting equivalent to 'hello'
; ''ndéewo'' (''in-DAY-woah'') : A formal greeting that can be used to greet anyone
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; ''ǹdêwó'' (''in-DAY-WOAH'') : A formal greeting that can be used to greet anyone
; ''ma-mma'' (''MAHM-MA'') : this is the most common polite term when addressing an elder or important person in society, this is used alongside the persons name and an honorific
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; ''-ḿmá'' (''MAHM-MA'') : this is the most common polite term when addressing an elder or important person in society, this is used alongside the persons name and an honorific
; ''nnọọ'' (''in-NOORE'') : a greeting mostly used in the northern part of Igboland
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; ''ǹnộ'' (''in-NOORE'') : a greeting mostly used in the northern part of Igboland
  
 
'''Informal'''
 
'''Informal'''
; ''nda'' (''in-DAH'') : can be an equivalent of 'what's up'
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; ''ǹdâ'' (''in-DAH'') : can be an equivalent of 'what's up'
; ''ani'' (''AH-NEE'') : more direct, used only by friends, insulting if used on someone older than the greeter
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; ''ánị̄'' (''AH-NEE'') : more direct, used only by friends, insulting if used on someone older than the greeter
; ''olea'' (''aw-LEE-yah'') : more direct, mostly from a friend to a friend
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; ''ọ̀lị́à'' (''aw-LEE-yah'') : more direct, mostly from a friend to a friend
; ''ogini kwanu/gini mere'' (''AW-gee-nee KU-wa-NOO/GEE-nee meh-reh'') : very direct and informal, literally 'what's happening'.
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; ''ọ̀gị́nị́ kwánụ́/gị́nị́ mẹ̀rẹ̀'' (''aw-GEE-NEE KU-WA-NOO/GEE-NEE meh-reh'') : very direct and informal, literally 'what's happening'.
  
 
'''Group'''
 
'''Group'''
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There are greetings usually made to a group of people which can also be used to boost morale.
 
There are greetings usually made to a group of people which can also be used to boost morale.
  
; ''Kwenu'' (''QUAY-noo'') : The most common group greeting, used only by males.
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; ''Kwénù'' (''QUAY-noo'') : The most common group greeting, used only by males.
; ''Daalu nu'' (''DAH-LOO noo'') : Meaning literally 'thank you all', this can be used by anybody.
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; ''Dǎlụ́'nụ̀'' (''DAH-LOO nooh'') : Meaning literally 'thank you all', this can be used by anybody.
  
 
}}
 
}}
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In Igbo society there are different ways of addressing people depending on their status in society. In order to show good manners and politeness, Igbo speakers are expected to use honorifics to address those that are significantly older than them (usually those old enough to be an uncle or grandparent, sure enough 'uncle' is sometimes used as an honorific). Here are some of the basic honorifics used in Igbo society.
 
In Igbo society there are different ways of addressing people depending on their status in society. In order to show good manners and politeness, Igbo speakers are expected to use honorifics to address those that are significantly older than them (usually those old enough to be an uncle or grandparent, sure enough 'uncle' is sometimes used as an honorific). Here are some of the basic honorifics used in Igbo society.
  
; ''mazi-'' (''MAH-ZEE'') : The most basic honorific for males, about equivalent to Mister. ''Mazi Ibekwe'': Mister Ibekwe
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; ''māzị́-'' (''MAH-ZEE'') : The most basic honorific for males, about equivalent to Mister. ''Mazi Ibekwe'': Mister Ibekwe
; ''da-'' (''DAH''): The most basic honorific for females, about equivalent to Misses, Miss, and most similar to madam or ma'am. ''Da Mgbechi'': Madam Mgbechi  
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; ''-'' (''DAH''): The most basic honorific for females, about equivalent to Misses, Miss, and most similar to madam or ma'am. ''Da Mgbechi'': Madam Mgbechi  
; ''de-de-'' (''DEH-deh'') : Another honorific for males, usually used in an informal setting, may be seen as the male equivalent of 'da', it has no equivalent in English, but is similar to saying 'big brother'. It is usually shortened to 'de'.
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; ''--'' (''DEH-deh'') : Another honorific for males, usually used in an informal setting, may be seen as the male equivalent of 'da', it has no equivalent in English, but is similar to saying 'big brother'. It is usually shortened to 'de'.
; ''ichie-'' (''ee-CHEE-ye'') : literally elder, used to address male elders.
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; ''ìchíè-'' (''ee-CHEE-ye'') : literally elder, used to address male elders.
; ''nzè-'' (''IN-zay'') : a noble title for males found in the northern parts of Igboland.
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; ''ńzè-'' (''IN-zay'') : a noble title for males found in the northern parts of Igboland.
; ''lọlọ-'' (''LOH-LOH'') : can be interpreted as 'dane' or 'dutchess', a title given to the wife of a titled man.
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; ''lộlọ̀-'' (''LOH-loh'') : can be interpreted as 'dane' or 'dutchess', a title given to the wife of a titled man.
  
For those younger than yourself, they can be called by their gender, 'nwoke' male or 'nwanyi' female, or by 'nwa' (WAHN) meaning child. This form of address can be patronizing.
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For those younger than yourself, they can be called by their gender, 'nwóké' male or 'nwânyị̀' female, or by 'nwá' (WAHN) meaning child. This form of address can be patronising.
  
 
===Reading and writing===
 
===Reading and writing===
The Igbo language was first written down with ideographs known as nsibidi which originated in the cross river region of Africa. Nsibidi characters or symbols were used to represent ideas and some words. British colonialism since the late 19th century till 1960 has wiped away nisbidi from daily use and has led to the introduction of the latin-script-based önwu script which is now used to write Igbo. The first book written in Igbo was an Ibo-Isuama primer by Bishop Ajayi Crowther, a Sierra Leonean creole of Egba-Yoruba descent in the 19th century. As a tonal language, the Latin script has been modified to fit the different tones and sounds of the Igbo language.
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The Igbo language was first inscribed with ideographs known as nsibidi which originated in the Cross River region of Africa. Nsibidi symbols were used to represent ideas and often times specific objects. British colonialism since the late 19th century till 1960 has wiped away nisbidi from general use and has led to the introduction of the Roman-script-based orthography known as ọ́nwụ́ which developed from several revisions of Roman orthographies in the 19th century and early 20th century. The first book written in Igbo was an Ibo-Isuama primer by Bishop Ajayi Crowther, a Sierra Leonean creole of Egba-Yoruba descent in the 19th century. As a tonal language, the Latin script has been modified to fit the different tones and sounds of the Igbo language.
  
 
Igbo-language literary works have been few since colonialism introduced an alphabet. Literature in English by Igbo writers on Igbo society, however, have achieved international acclaim, the most popular of these books, Things Fall Apart, written by author Chinua Achebe, deals with the subject of colonialism and the destruction of Igbo society in the late 19th century.
 
Igbo-language literary works have been few since colonialism introduced an alphabet. Literature in English by Igbo writers on Igbo society, however, have achieved international acclaim, the most popular of these books, Things Fall Apart, written by author Chinua Achebe, deals with the subject of colonialism and the destruction of Igbo society in the late 19th century.
  
The Igbo languages' tonality may be confusing at times as one word may have different meanings according to the way the tones are used. Diacritics are used to signal tones in written Igbo along with other special characters such as the dot over (˙) and underneath (.) A popular example of this is ''ákwà'' ('cloth'), ''àkwá'' ('egg').
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The Igbo languages' tonality may be confusing at times homonyms are differentiated by the way that the tones are expressed. Diacritics are used to signal tones in written Igbo along with other special characters such as the dot over (˙) and underneath (.). /akwa/ is a notorious homonym in Igbo which can be interpreted in different tones as /ákwà/ ('cloth'), ''àkwá'' ('egg'), /ákwá/ ('cry, crying'), /àkwà/ ('bed'), /àkwà/ ('bridge').
  
 
===Written Igbo===
 
===Written Igbo===
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===Basics===
 
===Basics===
 
{{infobox|Common signs|Although most signs in the Igbo-speaking areas of Nigeria may be in English, it will still be helpful to learn some of these signs in case you find your self in a more rural community.
 
{{infobox|Common signs|Although most signs in the Igbo-speaking areas of Nigeria may be in English, it will still be helpful to learn some of these signs in case you find your self in a more rural community.
; OPEN : Mèpòru (MEH-poe-roo)
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; OPEN : Mèpè (may-pay)
; CLOSED : Mèchiélé (MAY-chi-EH-LE)
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; CLOSED : M'Mèchi (MAY-chi-EH-LE)
; ENTRANCE : Ọbụbà (AW-BOO-BAA)
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; ENTRANCE : Ọ̀bụ̀bà (aw-boo-ba)
; EXIT : Úzọ Èzí (OO-zor AY-ZEE)
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; EXIT : ífụ́fụ́ / Úzọ Èzí (MM-FUH-FUH / OO-zor AY-ZEE)
; PUSH : Nu (NOO)
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; PUSH : Núo (NOO)
; PULL : Dọ (DOOR)
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; PULL : Dúọ̌ (DOOR)
; TOILET : Mpọsi (IM-paw-SI)
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; LOCK : kpóchíe (IM-paw-SI)
 
; MEN : Umunwóke (OO-MOO-wow-KAY)
 
; MEN : Umunwóke (OO-MOO-wow-KAY)
 
; WOMEN : Umunwañyi (OO-MOO-wa-yi)
 
; WOMEN : Umunwañyi (OO-MOO-wa-yi)
 
; FORBIDDEN : Ihe Nsọ (I-HYEAH IN-saw)}}
 
; FORBIDDEN : Ihe Nsọ (I-HYEAH IN-saw)}}
  
; Hello. : Ndeewo. (''in-DEEH-WO'')
+
; Hello. : Ndêwó. (''in-DEEH-WO'')
; Hello. (''informal'') : Kedú. (''keh-DO'')
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; Hello. (''informal'') : Kèdú. (''keh-DO'')
; Hello. (''casual'') :  Ǹda. (''in-DAH'')
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; Hello. (''casual'') :  Ǹdâ. (''in-DAH'')
; Welcome :  Nnöö (''in-NOOR'')
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; Welcome :  Nnộ (''in-NOOR'')
; How are you? :  Kedu ímèrè? (''keh-du kah E MEH-REH'')
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; How are you? :  Kèdú ímẹ̀rẹ̀? (''keh-DOO kah E meh-reh'')
; Fine, thank you. :  Ọ di mma. (''AW DEE MM-MA'')
+
; How are you (''Informal'') Kedu
; What is your name? :  Kedu áhà gi? (''keh-DO AH-HA gee'')
+
; Fine, thank you. :  A dị̀ ḿmá,ị̀melâ (''AW dee IM-MA'')
; My name is ______ . :  Áhàm bụ ______, ''or'' Afam bu ('': AH-HAM BOO _____ .'')
+
; What is your name? :  Kèdú áhà gị́? (''keh-DO AH-ha GEE'')
; Nice to meet you. :  Ọ di mma. (''AW DEE MM-MA'')
+
; My name is ______ . :  Áhàm bụ̀ ______, ''or'' Áfàm bụ̀ ('': AH-ham boo _____ .'')
; Please. :  Biko. (''BEE-COE'')
+
; Nice to meet you. :  Obu ihe obi uto imata gi. (''obuu ehe obi uu'to ima ta gi'')
; Thank you. :  Daalu/Imela. (''DA-LOO/EE-MEH-LAH'')
+
; Please. :  Bīkó. (''BEE-COE'')
; You're welcome. : Ndéwo. (''IN-day-WOAH'')
+
; Thank you. :  Dālụ́/Imẹ̄lá. (''DAA-LOO/EE-MEH-LAH'')
; Yes. : Éeyi, Ëhh. (''ey, AEH'')
+
; You're welcome. : Bàtà wà. (''Ba ta waa'')
; No. :  Mbà . (''IM-BAH'')
+
; Yes. : Éey, Ëhh. (''ey, AEH'')
; Excuse me. (''getting attention'') :  Biko, chètú. (''BEE-coe, CHE-too'')
+
; No. :  Ḿbà . (''IM-bah'')
; Excuse me. (''begging pardon'') :  Biko, é weli íwé. (''BEE-coe, A WELLI E-WAY'')
+
; Excuse me. (''getting attention'') :  Chere, chètú. (''Chey rey, CHE-too'')
 +
; Excuse me. (''begging pardon'') :  isi Gini, é weli íwé. (''ishi gi ni, A WELLI E-WAY'')
 
; I'm sorry. :  Ndo; Gbághàrám. (''in-DOH, BA-gah-RAM'')
 
; I'm sorry. :  Ndo; Gbághàrám. (''in-DOH, BA-gah-RAM'')
; Goodbye : Ka omesia. (''KAH O-MEH-SI-YA'')
+
; Goodbye : Kà ómésíá. (''kah O-MEH-SI-YA'')
; Goodbye (''informal'') : Ka anyi húní. (''KA-NYEE HOO-NEE'')
+
; Goodbye (''informal'') : ányị́ ga hú. (''Anyi i, gaa ahU'')
; I can't speak Igbo [well]. : A nam a sú Igbo [ọfuma]. (''AH nam AH sue EEG-BOW [AW-FOO-MAH]'')
+
; I can't speak Igbo [well]. : A'naghi'm a sú Igbo [ọfuma]. (''AH na yim AH sue EEG-BOW [AW-FOO-MAH]'')
; Do you speak English? : I na sú Bèké ? (''EE na SOO BAY-KAY?'')
+
; Do you speak English? : ị́ na sú Bèké ? (''EE na SOO BAY-KAY?'')
;  Is there someone here who speaks English? : Ọ di onye nọ nga nweríkí súfù bèké? (''OR dee on-yeh NOR in-GAH weh-RI-KI SUH-foo beh-KEH?'')
+
;  Is there someone here who speaks English? : Ọ di onye nọ nga nweríke ị́súfù bèké? (''OR dee on-yeh NOR in-GAH weh-RI-KI SUH-foo beh-KEH?'')(O nwere onye no ebe a n'asu bekee?)
; Help! : Nyem áká! (''NYEM AH-KAH'')
+
; Help! : Nyerem áká! (''NYEM AH-KAH'')
; Look out! :  Lèmá kwá! (''LAY-MA KWA'')
+
; Look out! :  Lèpu kwá anya! (''LAY-MA KWA'')
 
; Good morning. :  Ibọla chi. (''e BORLA CHI'')
 
; Good morning. :  Ibọla chi. (''e BORLA CHI'')
; Good evening. :  Ézígbó mgbede. (''AY-ZEE-GBO MM-GBAYDAY'')
+
; Good evening. :  mgbede ọma . (''MM-GBAYDAY oma'a'')
; Good night. : Ka chi bọ. (''KA CHI BAW'')
+
; Good night. : Kà chí bọ̌. (''ka CHI BAW'')
; Good night (''to sleep'') :  Ka chi fọ. (''KA chi FOR'')
+
; I don't understand. : À ghọ́tàghìm. (''ah GAW-tah-gim'')
; I don't understand. : À ghotaghím. ('' '')
+
; Where is the toilet? : Ké ébé ḿkpóchí dì? (''keh EH BEH MM-K-PO-CHEE dee'')
; Where is the toilet? : Ké ébé mpọsi dì? (''keh EH BEH mmPosee D'')
+
  
 
===Problems===
 
===Problems===
 
{{infobox|Body parts|
 
{{infobox|Body parts|
; head : ''íshí'' (''EE-SHEE'')
+
; head : ''ísí'' (''EE-SEE'')
; face: ''ihü'' (''EE-HUE'')
+
; face: ''íhú'' (''EE-HUE'')
 
; eyes: ''ányá'' (''AHN-YAH'')
 
; eyes: ''ányá'' (''AHN-YAH'')
; ears: ''ńtị'' (''NN-tih'')
+
; ears: ''ńtị̀'' (''IN-tih'')
 
; nose: ''ímí'' (''EE-MEE'')
 
; nose: ''ímí'' (''EE-MEE'')
; throat: ''akpịlị'' (''AHK-pee-leeh'')
+
; throat: ''ákpị̀rị́'' (''AHK-pee-REE'')
 
; chin: ''àgbà'' (''ahg-bah'')
 
; chin: ''àgbà'' (''ahg-bah'')
 
; neck : ''ólú'' (''OH-LOO'')
 
; neck : ''ólú'' (''OH-LOO'')
; shoulders: ''ùbu'' (''oo-boo'')
+
; shoulders: ''úbú'' (''OO-BOO'')
 
; chest: ''ugwùlùgwù'' (''ooh-gwoo-loo-gwoo'')
 
; chest: ''ugwùlùgwù'' (''ooh-gwoo-loo-gwoo'')
 
; waist: ''úkwù'' (''OO-kwoo'')
 
; waist: ''úkwù'' (''OO-kwoo'')
 
; arms: ''ihü áká'' (''EE-HUE AH-KAH'')
 
; arms: ''ihü áká'' (''EE-HUE AH-KAH'')
 
; wrists: ''nkwekọ áká'' (''nn-kweh-koh AH-KAH'')
 
; wrists: ''nkwekọ áká'' (''nn-kweh-koh AH-KAH'')
; fingers: ''mkpisi áká'' (''mm-KPEE-see AH-KAH'')
+
; fingers: ''m̀kpị́sị́ áká'' (''mm-KPEE-SEE AH-KAH'')
 
; hands: ''áká'' (''AH-KAH'')
 
; hands: ''áká'' (''AH-KAH'')
; elbow: ''ǹkù'' (''nn-koo'')
+
; elbow: ''ǹkù áká'' (''in-koo AH-KAH'')
; buttocks: ''íkẹ'' (''EE-keh'')
+
; buttocks: ''ị́kẹ̀'' (''EE-keh'')
 
; thigh: ''àkpàtà'' (''ahk-pah-tah'')
 
; thigh: ''àkpàtà'' (''ahk-pah-tah'')
; knee: ''íkpèlè'' (''EEK-peh-leh'')
+
; knee: ''íkpèrè'' (''EEK-peh-reh'')
 
; legs: ''úkwụ'' (''OO-KOOH'')
 
; legs: ''úkwụ'' (''OO-KOOH'')
; foot: ''òkpà'' (''oh-k-pah'')}}
+
; foot: ''ọ̀kpà'' (''oh-k-pah'')}}
  
 
; Leave me alone. : Hafum áká. (''HAH-foom AH-KAH'')
 
; Leave me alone. : Hafum áká. (''HAH-foom AH-KAH'')
; Don't touch me! : É mètùlum áka! (''EH meh-too-loom AH-KAH'')
+
; Don't touch me! : É mètùla'm áka! (''EH meh-tu-lam AH-KAH'')
; I'll call the police. : M gi kpọ ndi ùwé ojié. (''IM gee POR in-di oo-WEH OH-JI-yeah'')  
+
; I'll call the police. : M ga kpọrọ ndi ùwé oji. (''M gị́ POR in-di u-WEH OH-JI-'')  
; Police! : Poleesi/Uwè ojié! (''poe-LEE-see/OO-way oh-JEE!'')
+
; Police! : Polị́sị́/Uwè ojị́ị́! (''poe-LEE-see/OO-way oh-JEE!'')
; Stop! Thief! : Kushí! Onye óshi/ohi! (''koo-shee! OH-NYE OH-shi'')
+
; Stop! Thief! : Kwushí! Onye óshị́/ohi! (''koo-shee! OH-NYE OH-shi'')
; I need your help. : Á chom nyém àkà. (''AH chom kee nyeah-m AH-KAH'')  
+
; I need your help. : Á chorom nyérém àkà. (''AH chom kee nyeah-m AH-KAH'')  
; It's an emergency. : Ọ bu ihnyé óbì ọsịsọ. (''OR boo i-hi-yeh OH-bee OH-si-sor'')
+
; It's an emergency. : Ọ bu ihé ọsịsọ. (''OR boo i-he OH-si-sor'')
; I'm lost. : À mághim ébém nọr. (''AH MAH-gim EH-BEH-m NOR'')
+
; I'm lost. : À mághi'm ébé'm nọr. (''AH MAH-gim EH-BEH-m NOR'')
 
; I lost my bag. : Akpám è fuólé. (''ak-pam EH FU-OH-lay'')
 
; I lost my bag. : Akpám è fuólé. (''ak-pam EH FU-OH-lay'')
; I lost my wallet. : Akpá égóm è fuólé. (''AK-PA EH-gom EH FU-OH-lay'')
+
; I lost my wallet. : Àkpà égóm è fuólé. (''ak-pah EH-GOME eh FU-OH-LAY'')
 
; I'm sick. : Àhụ nà anwụm. (''ah-HOO NAH woom'')
 
; I'm sick. : Àhụ nà anwụm. (''ah-HOO NAH woom'')
 
; I've been injured. : Á meruolam àhú. (''AH MEH-RU-AW-LAM ah-hoo'')
 
; I've been injured. : Á meruolam àhú. (''AH MEH-RU-AW-LAM ah-hoo'')
; I need a doctor. : Onye ògwò orịá kam chọ. (''OH-yeh OH-gw-oh OH-ri-ya KAM chor'')
+
; I need a doctor. : Onye ògwò orịá ka mu n'achọ. (''OH-yeh OH-gw-oh OH-ri-ya KAM chor'')
; Can I use your phone? : M nwèríkí jítú fonu gí? (''IM weh-RI-KI JI-TOO fo-nu GEE'')
+
; Can I use your phone? : M nwèríke iweretu fonu gí? (''IM weh-RI-Ke iwee re-Tu fo-nu GEE'')
  
 
===Numbers===
 
===Numbers===
 
The Igbo numbers of today have been modified in a fashion that simulates counting in the English language. In the traditional counting system which is used much less often today, several numbers are counted much differently than they would in the English language. An example of this would be even numerals of ten which are usually named after calculation of twenty, for example 20 is ọgụ, 40 is ọgụ abuọ which is literally 'two twenty's', and so on until 80 ('ọgụ anọ; four twenty's'). The names of some numbers have also been changed in order to provide vocabulary from the rapidly expanded number range introduced to the Igbo via Western education, an example of this is ''ijeri'' which meant 'eight thousand', but is now used for a billion.
 
  
 
; 1 One : Ótù (''OH-too'')
 
; 1 One : Ótù (''OH-too'')
  
; 2 Two : Abuọ (''ah-BWORE'')
+
; 2 Two : Àbụ́ọ́ (''ah-BWORE'')
 
+
; 3 Three : Àtȯ (''ah-TOH'')
+
  
; 4 Four : Anọ (''ah-NORE'')
+
; 3 Three : Àtọ́ (''ah-TOH'')
  
; 5 Five : Isé (''ee-SAY'')
+
; 4 Four : Ànọ́ (''ah-NORE'')
  
; 6 Six : Ishii (''EE-SHE-e'')
+
; 5 Five : Ìsé (''ee-SAY'')
  
; 7 Seven : Asaa (''ah-SAH-ah'')
+
; 6 Six : Ìsî (''ee-SEE-ee'')
  
; 8 Eight : Asatọ (''ah-SAH-toh'')
+
; 7 Seven : Àsâ (''ah-SAH-ah'')
  
; 9 Nine : Itóolu (''ee-TOE-LOO'')
+
; 8 Eight : Àsátọ́ (''ah-SAH-TAW'')
  
; 10 Ten : Iri (''ee-REE'')
+
; 9 Nine : Ìtôlú (''ee-TOE-LOO'')
  
; 11 Eleven : Iri na ótù (''ee-REE nah OH-too'')
+
; 10 Ten : Ìrí (''ee-REE'')
  
; 12 Twelve : Iri na abuọ (''ee-REE nah ah-BWORE'')
+
; 11 Eleven : Ìrí nà ótù (''ee-REE nah OH-too'')
  
; 13 Thirteen : Iri na àtȯ (''ee-REE nah ah-TOH'')
+
; 12 Twelve : Ìrí nà àbụ́ọ́ (''ee-REE nah ah-BWORE'')
  
; 14 Fourteen : Iri na anọ (''ee-REE nah ah-NORE'')
+
; 13 Thirteen : Ìrí nà àtọ́ (''ee-REE nah ah-TOH'')
  
; 15 Fifteen : Iri na isé (''ee-REE nah ee-SAY'')
+
; 14 Fourteen : Ìrí nà ànọ́ (''ee-REE nah ah-NORE'')
  
; 16 Sixteen : Iri na ishii (''ee-REE nah EE-SHE-e'')
+
; 15 Fifteen : Ìrí nà isé (''ee-REE nah ee-SAY'')
  
; 17 Seventeen : Iri na asaa (''ee-REE nah ah-SAH-ah'')
+
; 16 Sixteen : Ìrí nà ìsî (''ee-REE nah ee-SEE-e'')
  
; 18 Eighteen : Iri na asatọ (''ee-REE nah ah-SAH-toh'')
+
; 17 Seventeen : Ìrí nà àsâ (''ee-REE nah ah-SAH-ah'')
  
; 19 Nineteen : Iri na itóolu (''ee-REE nah ee-TOE-LOO'')
+
; 18 Eighteen : Ìrí nà àsátọ́ (''ee-REE nah ah-SAH-toh'')
  
; 20 Twenty : Iri abuọ; Ọgụ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE; aw-GOH'')
+
; 19 Nineteen : Ìrí nà Ìtôlú (''ee-REE nah ee-TOE-LOO'')
  
; 21 Twenty one : Iri abuọ na ótù (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah OH-too'')
+
; 20 Twenty : Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE / AW-GUH'')
  
; 22 Twenty two : Iri abuọ na abuọ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-BWORE'')
+
; 21 Twenty one : Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na ótù (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah OH-too'')
  
; 23 Twenty three : Iri abuọ na àtȯ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-TOH'')
+
; 22 Twenty two : Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àbụ́ọ́ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-BWORE'')
  
; 30 Thirty : Iri àtȯ (''ee-REE ah-TOH'')
+
; 23 Twenty three : Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àtọ́ (''ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-TOH'')
  
; 40 Fourty : Iri anȯ; ọgụ abuọ (''ee-REE ah-NORE; aw-goo ah-BWORE'')
+
; 30 Thirty : Ìrí àtọ́ (''ee-REE ah-TOH'')
  
; 50 Fifty : Iri isé (''ee-REE ee-SAY'')
+
; 40 Forty : Ìrí ànọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ àbụ́ọ́ (''ee-REE ah-NORE / AW-GUH ah-BWORE'')
  
; 60 Sixty : Iri ishii (''ee-REE EE-SHE-e'')
+
; 50 Fifty : Ìrí ìsé (''ee-REE ee-SAY'')
  
; 70 Seventy : Iri Asaa (''ee-REE ah-SAH-ah'')
+
; 60 Sixty : Ìrí ìsî (''ee-REE EE-SEE-e'')
  
; 80 Eighty : Iri Asato (''ee-REE ah-SAH-toh'')
+
; 70 Seventy : Ìrí àsâ (''ee-REE ah-SAH-ah'')
  
; 90 Ninety : Iri Itóolu (''ee-REE ee-TOE-LOO'')
+
; 80 Eighty : Ìrí àsátọ́ (''ee-REE ah-SAH-toh'')
  
; 100 Hundred : Nnari; ọgụ isé (''IN-NAH-REE; aw-gu ee-SAY'')
+
; 90 Ninety : Ìrí Ìtôlú (''ee-REE ee-TOE-LOO'')
  
; 200 Two hundred : Nnari abuọ; ọgu iri (''in-NAH-REE ah-BWORE; aw-goo-ee-lee'')
+
; 100 Hundred : Ńnárị́ / Ọ́gụ́ ìsé (''IN-NAH-REE / AW-GUH ee-SAY'')
  
; 300 Three hundred : Nnari àtȯ (''in-NAH-REE ah-TOH'')
+
; 200 Two hundred : Ńnárị́ àbụ́ọ́ (''IN-NAH-REE ah-BWORE'')
  
; 400 Four hundred: Nnụ̀ ("in-noo")
+
; 300 Three hundred : Ńnárị́ àtọ́ (''IN-NAH-REE ah-TOH'')
  
; 1000 Thousand : Puku (''POO-KOO'')
+
; 400 Four hundred : Ńnárị́ ànọ́ / Ńnụ̀ (''in-NAH-REE ah-NORE / IN-nuh'')
  
; 2000 Two thousand : Puku abuọ (''POO-KOO ah-BWORE'')
+
; 1000 Thousand : Púkú (''POO-KOO'')
  
; 3000 Three thousand : Puku àtȯ (''POO-KOO ah-TOH'')
+
; 2000 Two Thousand : Púkú àbụ́ọ́ (''POO-KOO ah-BWORE'')
  
; 8000 Eight thousand : ụlánnụ̀ (''oo-LA-in-noo'')
+
; 3000 Three Thousand : Púkú àtọ́ (''POO-KOO ah-TOH'')
  
; 10,000 Ten thousand : Puku iri (''POO-KOO ee-RE'')
+
; 10,000 Ten Thousand : Púkú ìrí (''POO-KOO ee-RE'')
  
; 100,000 A hundred thousand : Puku nnari (''POO-KOO IN-NAH-REE'')
+
; 100,000 A hundred thousand : Púkú ńnárí (''POO-KOO IN-NAH-REE'')
  
; 1,000,000 Million : Ndè (''IN-day'')
+
; 1,000,000 Million : Ńdè (''IN-day'')
  
; 100,000,000 A hundred million : Ndè nnari (''IN-day IN-NAH-REE'')
+
; 100,000,000 A hundred million : Ńdè ńnárí (''IN-day IN-NAH-REE'')
  
; 1,000,000,000 Billion : Ijeri (''ee-JAY-REE'')
+
; 1,000,000,000 Billion : Ìjérí (''ee-JAY-REE'')
  
 
===Time===
 
===Time===
 
; time : ógè (''OH-gey'')
 
; time : ógè (''OH-gey'')
  
; now : ubwa; kịta (''oo-BWA; KEE-ta'')
+
; now : ùgbúà (''oog-BU-wa'')
  
; later : ómeziá (''OH-MEH-ZEE-YAH'')
+
; later : èmésiá (''OH-MEH-si-YAH'')
  
; before : du (''DOO'')
+
; before : mbụ̀ (''mbu'u'')
  
; daily : daa (''daah'')
+
; daily : kwa ubochi (''kua ubo chii'')
  
; morning : ụtútụ (''ooh-TUH-tuh'')
+
; morning : ụ̀tútụ̀ (''ooh-TUH-tuh'')
  
; afternoon : èfìfiè (''ay-fee-fyeh'')
+
; afternoon : èhíhìè (''ey-HEE-hye'')
  
; evening : èhíhnyè, mgbèdè anyàsì (''ay-HEE-hi-yeah, im-be-de ah-ni-yah-see'')
+
; evening : m̀gbèdè/ànyàsì (''im-be-de ahn-yah-see'')
  
; dusk : ùruluchi (''oo-ROO-LOO-CHEE'')
+
; dusk : ùrúlúchí (''oo-ROO-LOO-CHEE'')
  
 
; night: ábàlì (''AH-bah-lee'')
 
; night: ábàlì (''AH-bah-lee'')
Line 303: Line 319:
 
; Clock : Élékéré (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH'')
 
; Clock : Élékéré (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH'')
  
; six o'clock in the morning: élékéré ishii na ụtútụ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-SHE-ee nah oo-TUH-tuh'')
+
; six o'clock in the morning: élékéré ìsî nke ụ̀tụ́tụ̀ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-SEE-ee nke oo-TUH-tuh'')
  
; nine o'clock AM : élékéré itoolu na ụtútụ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-TOE-LOO nah oo-TUH-tuh'')
+
; nine o'clock AM : élékéré ìtôlú nke ụtútụ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-TOE-LOO nke oo-TUH-tuh'')
  
; noon : èfìfiè nàbọ (''ay-fee-fi-yeah nah-BOH'')
+
; noon : èhíhìè (''ey-HEE-hee-yay'')
  
; one o'clock PM : élékéré ótù nàbọ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH OH-too nah-BOH'')
+
; one o'clock PM : élékéré ótù nke ehihie (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH OH-too,nke ehi hiye'')
  
; two o'clock PM : élékéré abuọ nàbọ (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ah-BWORE nah-BOH'')
+
; two o'clock PM : élékéré abuọ nke ehihie (''AY-LAY-KAY-REH ah-BWORE nkey ehihie'')
  
 
; midnight : ètítì ábàlì (''ay-TEE-tee AH-bah-lee'')
 
; midnight : ètítì ábàlì (''ay-TEE-tee AH-bah-lee'')
  
 
====Duration====
 
====Duration====
; Second : Nkeji (''in-KAY-jee'')
+
; Second : Ńkéjì (''IN-KAY-jee'')
  
 
; Minute : Mkpìlìkpì ógè (''im-pee-lee-pee OH-gey'')
 
; Minute : Mkpìlìkpì ógè (''im-pee-lee-pee OH-gey'')
  
; Hour : Àmànị (''ah-mah-nee'')
+
; Hour : Elekere (''eley key rey'')
  
; Day : Ụbọchi (''oo-boh-chee'')
+
; Day : Ụ́bọ̀chị̀ (''OO-boh-chee'')
  
; Week : Izù (''ee-zoo'')
+
; Week : Ízù (''EE-zoo'')
  
; Month : Ȯnwa (''AW-WAH'')
+
; Month : Ọ́nwạ́ (''AW-WAH'')
  
; Year : Áfọ (''AH-fore'')
+
; Year : Áfọ̀ (''AH-fore'')
  
 
====Days====
 
====Days====
Line 336: Line 352:
 
These traditional market days are:
 
These traditional market days are:
  
; ''áfȯ/Aho'' (''AH-four'') : corresponding to the north
+
; ''Àfọ̀/Àhọ̀'' (''ah-four'') : corresponding to the north
; ''ńkwȯ'' (''IN-kwor'') : corresponding to the south
+
; ''ǹkwọ́'' (''in-KWOR'') : corresponding to the south
; ''éké/ekeh'' (''AY-KAY'') : corresponding to the east
+
; ''èké'' (''ay-KAY'') : corresponding to the east
; ''órie, oye'' (''OH-ree-yeah'') : corresponding to the west}}
+
; ''órìè'' / ''óyè'' (''OH-ree-yeah'') : corresponding to the west}}
  
; today : ta, ụbọchi ta (''TAH, OO-boh-chi TAH'')
+
; today : , ụ́bọ̀chị̀ tâ (''TAH, OO-boh-chi TAH'')
; yesterday : nnyáfu, chi làràni (''IN-YAH-fuh, CHI lah-RAH-nee'')
+
; yesterday : ńnyáhụ̀, chí gara aga (''IN-YAH-fuh, Chi gara agaa'')
; tomorrow : échí (''ay-CHI'')
+
; tomorrow : échí/échí na abia abia (''AY-CHEE'')
; this week : izù nka (''ee-ZOO in-KAH'')
+
; this week : ízù ǹkâ (''EE-zoo in-KAH'')
; last week : izù laranị (''ee-ZOO lah-rah-nee'')
+
; last week : ízù gara aga (''EE-zoo LAH-RAH-NEE'')
; next week : izù nabia (''ee-ZOO nah-BYAH'')
+
; next week : izù n'abia (''ee-ZOO nah-BYAH'')
  
 
; Sunday : Ụbọchị úkà (''oo-BOH-chi oo-KAH'')
 
; Sunday : Ụbọchị úkà (''oo-BOH-chi oo-KAH'')
Line 360: Line 376:
 
The calendar of the Igbo people is known as ''Oguaro'' or ''Oguafor'' (lit. 'counting of the years'). Month in Igbo is ''ọnwa'' (lit. 'moon'), year is 'afọ'. The traditional Igbo year has 13 months which are usually named after their position in the year; most are named after a religious ceremony or after a certain deity such as Ana the mother alusi (deity) of the earth. The traditional 13 month calendar is rarely used in Igbo society, instead the Gregorian 12 month calendar is used. Below are the months of the year in the traditional 13 week Oguaro calendar and their Gregorian equivalents.
 
The calendar of the Igbo people is known as ''Oguaro'' or ''Oguafor'' (lit. 'counting of the years'). Month in Igbo is ''ọnwa'' (lit. 'moon'), year is 'afọ'. The traditional Igbo year has 13 months which are usually named after their position in the year; most are named after a religious ceremony or after a certain deity such as Ana the mother alusi (deity) of the earth. The traditional 13 month calendar is rarely used in Igbo society, instead the Gregorian 12 month calendar is used. Below are the months of the year in the traditional 13 week Oguaro calendar and their Gregorian equivalents.
  
; Months (Ọnwa) : Gregorian equivalent
+
; Months (Ọ́nwạ́) : Gregorian equivalent
  
; ''Ọnwa Mbụ'' (''AW-wah MM-BOO'') : 3rd week of February
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Mbụ'' (''AW-WAH MM-BOO'') : 3rd week of February
; ''Ọnwa Abuọ'' (''AW-wah AH-bu-wor'') : March
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Abuọ'' (''AW-WAH AH-bu-wor'') : March
; ''Ọnwa Ife Eke'' (''AW-wah EE-fay AY-KAY'') : April
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ife Eke'' (''AW-WAH EE-fay AY-KAY'') : April
; ''Ọnwa Anọ'' (''AW-wah AH-nor'') : May
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Anọ'' (''AW-WAH AH-nor'') : May
; ''Ọnwa Agwụ'' (''AW-wah AH-goo'') : June
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Agwụ'' (''AW-WAH AH-goo'') : June
; ''Ọnwa Ifejiọkụ'' (''AW-wah EE-fay-jee-OR-koo'') : July
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ifejiọkụ'' (''AW-WAH EE-fay-jee-OR-koo'') : July
; ''Ọnwa Alọm Chi'' (''AW-wah AH-LOHM chi'') : August to early September
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Alọm Chi'' (''AW-WAH AH-LOHM chi'') : August to early September
; ''Ọnwa Ilo Mmụọ'' (''AW-wah EE-low MM-MORE'') : Late September
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ilo Mmụọ'' (''AW-WAH EE-low MM-MORE'') : Late September
; ''Ọnwa Ana'' (''AW-wah AH-NAH'') : October
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ana'' (''AW-WAH AH-NAH'') : October
; ''Ọnwa Okike'' (''AW-wah OH-kee-kay'') : Early November
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Okike'' (''AW-WAH OH-kee-kay'') : Early November
; ''Ọnwa Ajana'' (''AW-wah AH-jah-nah'') : Late November
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ajana'' (''AW-WAH AH-jah-nah'') : Late November
; ''Ọnwa Ede Ajana'' (''AW-wah AY-DAY ah-jah nah'') : Late November to December
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ede Ajana'' (''AW-WAH AY-DAY ah-jah nah'') : Late November to December
; ''Ọnwa Ụzọ Alụsị'' (''AW-wah oo-ZOR AH-LUH-SEE'') : January to Early February}}
+
; ''Ọ́nwạ́ Ụzọ Alụsị'' (''AW-WAH oo-ZOR AH-LUH-SEE'') : January to Early February}}
  
 
The Gregorian calendar is translated into Igbo either by naming the twelve months by their position in the calendar, or by using loan words from English.
 
The Gregorian calendar is translated into Igbo either by naming the twelve months by their position in the calendar, or by using loan words from English.
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; Rainy season : Ùdù mmíri (''oo-doo MM-MEE-REE'')
 
; Rainy season : Ùdù mmíri (''oo-doo MM-MEE-REE'')
; Dry season : Ọkọchì (''aw-koh-chee'')
+
; Dry season : Ọ̀kọ̀chì (''aw-koh-chee'')
; harmattan : ugụlụ (''OO-goo-loo'')
+
; harmattan : ụ́gụ̀lụ̀ (''OO-goo-loo'')
  
 
====Writing time and date====
 
====Writing time and date====
The Igbo have adopted the Western way of writing the time and date, most of the times dates are written as they would in English speaking country's (dd/mm/yyyy). These are some of the terms for date and time in Igbo.
+
The Igbo have adopted the Western way of writing the time and date, most of the times dates are written as they would in English speaking country's (dd/mm/yyyy). These are soome of the terms for date and time in Igbo.
  
 
; Year : Afọ (''AH-fore'')
 
; Year : Afọ (''AH-fore'')
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; under : okpúrù (''oak-KPOO-roo'')
 
; under : okpúrù (''oak-KPOO-roo'')
 
; front : nà íshí, nà ihü (''nah EE-SHEE, nah EE-HUE'')
 
; front : nà íshí, nà ihü (''nah EE-SHEE, nah EE-HUE'')
; back : nà àzú (''nah-ZOO'')
+
; back : nà àzú (''nah-ah-ZOO'')
; How do I get to _____ ? : Òtùóle kam gi ruo ______? (''oh-too-OH-LAY kahm GEE-ROW'')
+
; How do I get to _____ ? : Òtùòlé kǎm gi ______? (''oh-too-oh-LAY KAHM GEE-RUE'')
; ...the train station? : ...ébé ụgbo igwẹ kúshí? (''AY-BAY oohg-BOW EE-gweh nah KOO-SHEE?'')
+
; ...the train station? : ...ébé ụ̀gbọ́ ígwè kụ́shị́? (''AY-BAY oohg-BOW EE-gweh nah KOO-SHEE?'')
; ...the bus station? : ...ébé bos steshon? (''AY-BAY BOS STAY-shun?'')
+
; ...the bus station? : ...ébé bọ́s stéshọ̀n? (''AY-BAY BOS STAY-shon?'')
; ...the airport? : ... epot? (''EH-pot?'')
+
; ...the airport? : ... ẹ̄pọ̀tụ̀? (''EH-poh-too?'')
 
; ...uptown? : ...énú ànị? (''AY-NOO ah-nee'')
 
; ...uptown? : ...énú ànị? (''AY-NOO ah-nee'')
 
; ...downtown? : ...àzú obodo? (''ah-ZOO oh-bow-doe'')
 
; ...downtown? : ...àzú obodo? (''ah-ZOO oh-bow-doe'')
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; left : áká èkpè, leftu (''AH-KAH ehk-pe, LEHF-too'')
 
; left : áká èkpè, leftu (''AH-KAH ehk-pe, LEHF-too'')
 
; straight ahead : gàwá na ihü (''gah-WAH nah EE-HUE'')
 
; straight ahead : gàwá na ihü (''gah-WAH nah EE-HUE'')
; towards the _____ : nọr úzò _____ (''noh nah OO-zor'')
+
; towards the _____ : nọ̀ ụ́zọ̀ _____ (''noh nah OO-zor'')
 
; past the _____ : gáfè _____ (''GAH-fay'')
 
; past the _____ : gáfè _____ (''GAH-fay'')
; before the _____ : nà íshí _____ (''nah EE-SHEE'')
+
; before the _____ : nà ísí _____ (''nah EE-SEE'')
 
; Watch for the _____. : Lèmá kwá _____. (''leh-MAH KWAH'')
 
; Watch for the _____. : Lèmá kwá _____. (''leh-MAH KWAH'')
 
; intersection : jonkshon (''JONK-shon'')
 
; intersection : jonkshon (''JONK-shon'')
; north : òlìlé anyanwü, áfȯ (''oh-lee-LAY AHN-YAH-WOO, AH-four'')
+
; north : òlìlé anyanwü, àfọ̀ (''oh-lee-LAY AHN-YAH-WOO, ah-four'')
; south : nlédà anyanwü, ṅkwȯ (''in-LAY-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, IN-kwor'')
+
; south : nlédà anyanwü, ǹkwọ̀ (''in-LAY-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, in-kwor'')
; east : ọwụwà anyanwü, éké (''OH-WOO-WAH AHN-YAH-WOO, AY-KAY'')
+
; east : ọwụwà anyanwü, èké (''OH-WOO-WAH AHN-YAH-WOO, ay-KAY'')
; west : ọdịdà anyanwü, órie (''oh-dee-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, OH-ree-yeah'')
+
; west : ọdịdà anyanwü, órìè (''oh-dee-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, OH-ree-yeah'')
; uphill : élú ügwü (''AY-LOO OO-GWOOH'')
+
; uphill : élú ụ́gwụ (''AY-LOO OO-GWOOH'')
; downhill : ükwü ügwü (''OO-KWOO OO-GWOOH'')
+
; downhill : ụ́kwụ́ ụ́gwụ (''OO-KWOO OO-GWOOH'')
  
 
====Taxi====
 
====Taxi====
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; Do you ship (overseas)? : Ì nè réfù ihnye na ùfèsì? (''ee neh REH-foo i-hee-yeah nah oo-feh-see?'')
 
; Do you ship (overseas)? : Ì nè réfù ihnye na ùfèsì? (''ee neh REH-foo i-hee-yeah nah oo-feh-see?'')
 
; I need... : M chọrọ... (''MM chore-roh...'')
 
; I need... : M chọrọ... (''MM chore-roh...'')
; ...toothpaste. : ...ùdè ézé. (''OO-deh AY-ZAE.'')
+
; ...toothpaste. : ...údé ézé. (''OO-DEH AY-ZAE.'')
; ...a toothbrush. : ...ọ sà ézé. (''OR sah AY-ZAE.'')
+
; ...a toothbrush. : ...átụ́. (''AH-TOO.'')
 
; ...tampons. : ...ihnye àhú umunwanyi tamponu. (''ee-hee-yeah ah-HOO OO-moo-WAH-yee TAM-poh-noo.'')
 
; ...tampons. : ...ihnye àhú umunwanyi tamponu. (''ee-hee-yeah ah-HOO OO-moo-WAH-yee TAM-poh-noo.'')
 
; ...soap. : ...ńchà. (''NN-cha.'')
 
; ...soap. : ...ńchà. (''NN-cha.'')
; ...shampoo. : ...nsápụ íshí. (''IN-sa-PU EE-SHEE.'')  
+
; ...shampoo. : ...ńchà ńtùtù. (''IN-cha IN-too-too.'')  
 
; ...pain reliever. (''e.g., aspirin or ibuprofen'') : ...ihnye íshí ọwuwa/ihnye nwéfu ihnye ölulu. (''EE-HEE-YEAH EE-SHEE oh-WOO-WAH/EE-HEE-YEAH nn-WEH-foo EE-HEE-YEAH ooh-loo-loo.'')
 
; ...pain reliever. (''e.g., aspirin or ibuprofen'') : ...ihnye íshí ọwuwa/ihnye nwéfu ihnye ölulu. (''EE-HEE-YEAH EE-SHEE oh-WOO-WAH/EE-HEE-YEAH nn-WEH-foo EE-HEE-YEAH ooh-loo-loo.'')
 
; ...cold medicine. : ...ȯgvụ óyí. (''OG-voo OH-YEE.'')
 
; ...cold medicine. : ...ȯgvụ óyí. (''OG-voo OH-YEE.'')
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===Driving===
 
===Driving===
; I want to rent a car. : M chò rí gbátú mótò. (''MM chore RI BAH-TOO MOE-toe'')
+
; I want to rent a car. : Ḿ chọ̀rị́ gō mótò. (''MM chore-RI GOO MOE-toe'')
; Can I get insurance? : M nwèríkí gota ihe é ji è cèdólu mótò? (''MM we-RI-KI gor-TA i-he EH jee eh SEH-DOH-LOO moe-toe'')
+
; Can I get insurance? : Á chọ̀m̀ íkíké mótò? (''AH cho-mm I-KEE-KAY MOH-toe'')
; stop (''on a street sign'') : kụshị (''koo-SHEE'')
+
; stop (''on a street sign'') : kụ̀shị́ (''koo-SHEE'')
; one way : ótù uzọ (''oh-too OO-zaw'')
+
; one way : ụ́zọ̀ ótù (''OO-zoh OH-too'')
; yield : cham uzọ (''CHAM OO-zaw'')
+
; yield : chāḿ ụ́zọ̀ (''CHAAM OO-zaw'')
; no parking : ha ná à nyedo nga (''HA nah nn-yeh-doe nn-GAH'')
+
; no parking : É nyèdòlù (''EH ye-do-loo'')
; speed limit : ezu ọsọ uzo (''EH-ZOO oh-soh oo-ZOR'')
+
; speed limit : ézú ọ́sọ́ ụ́zọ̀ (''EH-ZOO AW-SORE OO-zor'')
; gas (''petrol'') station : ébé há nè ré petrol (''AY-BAY HAH neh REH peh-trol'')
+
; gas (''petrol'') station : ụ́lọ́ petrol (''OOH-LAW peh-TROLL'')
 
; petrol : petrol (''peh-TROLL'')
 
; petrol : petrol (''peh-TROLL'')
; diesel : deezul (''DEE-zool'')
+
; diesel : deezulu (''DEE-zooloo'')
  
 
===Authority===
 
===Authority===
; I haven't done anything wrong. : Ọ dighì ihyem mèrè. (''AW dee-gee ee-HYEM MEH-REH'')
+
; I haven't done anything wrong. : Ọ̀ dị́ghị̀ íhyéḿ mẹ̀rẹ̀. (''aw DEE-gee EE-HYEM meh-reh'')
; It was a misunderstanding. : Ọ bu ọghọm. (''AW boo AW-GOM'')
+
; It was a misunderstanding. : Ọ́ bụ̀ ọ́ghóḿ. (''AW boo AW-GOM'')
; Where are you taking me? : Ke ébe Í ne dúfum? (''KAY AY-BAY EE neh DOO-foom'')
+
; Where are you taking me? : Ké ébé í nè dúfūm? (''KAY AY-BAY EE neh DOO-foom'')
; Am I under arrest? : tum nkpȯrȯ? (''ee nah TOOM in-POH-ROH'')
+
; Am I under arrest? : ị̀ tụ́ḿ ńkpọ́rọ́? (''ee nah TOOM IN-POH-ROH'')
; I am an American/Australian/British/Canadian citizen. : Á bùm ónyé mbà Amerika/Osutralia/Britain/Kanada. (''AH boom OHN-YE MM-bah...'')
+
; I am an American/Australian/British/Canadian citizen. : Á bụ̀m ónyé ḿbà Amirika/Osuterelia/Briten/Kanada. (''AH boom OH-NYE MM-bah...'')
; I want to talk to the American/Australian/British/Canadian embassy/consulate. : Á chọm Í hü ndi òché mbà Amerika/Osutralia/Britain/Kanada. (''AH chore-m ee HUH in-di OH-CHAY MM-bah...'')
+
; I want to talk to the American/Australian/British/Canadian embassy/consulate. : Á chọ̀m̀ ị́ hụ́ ńdú òché ḿbà Amerika/Osutralia/Britain/Kanada. (''AH chore-m ee HUH IN-DIH oh-CHAY MM-bah...'')
; I want to talk to a lawyer. : Á chọm Í hü ónyé ikpe. (''AH chore-m EE HUH ON-YEAH EEK-pay'')
+
; I want to talk to a lawyer. : Á chọ̀m̀ ị́ hụ́ ónyé íkpè. (''AH chore-m EE HUH OWN-YAY EEK-pay'')
; Can I just pay a fine now? : M nwèríkí kwú úgwọ nra ubwa? (''MM we-REE-KEE k-wu OO-GWOR NN-RAH oo-bu-WAH'')
+
; Can I just pay a fine now? : nwèríkí kwụ́ ụ́gwọ́ ńrá ùgbúà? (''mm we-REE-KEE K-WOO OO-GWOR NN-RAH oo-BU-wah'')
  
 
===Expressions and particles===
 
===Expressions and particles===
 
Like many African languages Igbo is a very expressive language that makes use of a lot of exclamations in its daily use. Some of these are included:
 
Like many African languages Igbo is a very expressive language that makes use of a lot of exclamations in its daily use. Some of these are included:
  
; -kwanu (''KWA-NOO'') : 'though'<br />This is usually added to the end of a question to make something inclusive.
+
; -kwánụ́ (''KWA-NOO'') : 'though'<br />This is usually added to the end of a question to make something inclusive.
; -ụkwá (''ooh-KWA'') : 'as well'<br />similar to 'kwanu' but is added at the end of any sentence for the same effect.
+
; -ụ̀kwá (''ooh-KWA'') : 'as well'<br />similar to 'kwanu' but is added at the end of any sentence for the same effect.
; ewoh! (''ay-WOAH'') : 'oh no!'<br />An exclamation that can be made out of exhaustion, either from laughing at a joke or when work is done; realising a mistake (like leaving the lights in the house on all night); or any other terrible event.
+
; èwó! (''ay-WOAH'') : 'oh no!'<br />An exclamation that can be made out of exhaustion, either from laughing at a joke or when work is done, realising a mistake, like leaving the lights in the house on all night, or any other terrible event.
; Chineke! (''CHEE-NAY-KAY'') : 'God!'<br />Chineke is 'God' and is a common expression use for the same purposes as 'Jesus' often does in English.
+
; Chínēkè! (''CHEE-NAY-kay'') : 'God!'<br />Chineke is 'God' and is a common expression use for the same purposes as 'Jesus' often does in English.
; o! (''OH'') : 'Okay, all right'<br />A exclamation that often made in agreement, it can sometimes be used for sarcasm. Common used to reply an adamant person. It is often used on its own, but can be attached to another word, e.g 'Chim o!' meaning 'my spirit', here it does not have any connotation and is only used for emphasis.
+
; ó! (''OH'') : 'Okay, all right'<br />A exclamation that often means agreeing with something, although it can sometimes be used as sarcasm, a common situation where this is used is when someone is arrogant in their knowledge of something. It is often used on its own, but can be attached to another word, e.g 'Chim o!' meaning 'my spirit'.
; hewu! (''HE-woo'') : 'No!'<br />An expression used in a shocking tragic moment.
+
; héwù! (''HEY-woo'') : 'No!'<br />An expression used in a shocking tragic moment.
; Ȯ dịkwa égwù (''AW dee-kwah EH-gwoo'') : 'Impossible'<br />Sometimes used to show absolute rejection of something.
+
; Ọ́ dị̀kwà égwù (''AW dee-kwah EH-gwoo'') : 'Impossible'<br />Sometimes used to show absolute rejection of something.
; tufíakwà (''too-FEE-ya-kwa'') : 'Disgusting!'<br />Extreme rejection or opposition of something, usually followed with clicking fingers over the head as to rid oneself of the thing in question. This is often a reaction to an abomination.
+
; tụ̀fíàkwà (''too-FEE-ya-kwa'') : 'Disgusting!'<br />Extreme rejection or opposition of something, usually followed with clicking fingers over the head as to rid oneself of the thing in question. This is an often reaction to an abomination.
; Chineke é kwélé ihe ọjọ (''CHEE-NAY-KAY EH KWEH-LEH EE-HEE-YEAH oh-joh'') : 'God will not allow a bad thing'<br />An exclamation made out of shock when a bad thing happens.
+
; Chínēkè é kwélé ị́hyẹ́ ọ́jọ̄ (''CHEE-NAY-kay EH KWEH-LEH EE-HEE-YEAH OH-JAW'') : 'God will not allow a bad thing'<br />An exclamation made out of shock when a bad thing happens.
  
 
==Learning more==
 
==Learning more==
 
* [http://www.igboguide.org Igbo Guide] — Insight into Igbo Culture, Igbo Language and Enugu.
 
* [http://www.igboguide.org Igbo Guide] — Insight into Igbo Culture, Igbo Language and Enugu.
 
* [http://www.igbofocus.com/html/learn_igbo.html Igbo Focus] — A collection of simple Igbo words and phrases.
 
* [http://www.igbofocus.com/html/learn_igbo.html Igbo Focus] — A collection of simple Igbo words and phrases.
 +
* [http://mkpuruokwu.org Mkpuruokwu Igbo: The Igbo Dictionary] — Online English-Igbo-English dictionary with over 5000 English-Igbo-English translations.
  
 
{{guidephrasebook}}
 
{{guidephrasebook}}

Latest revision as of 12:41, 18 September 2014

An Ókárá Ẹ̀kpẹ̀ resist-dyed with nsibidi symbols.

Igbo (Igbo: Ásụ̀sụ̀ Ìgbò) is a Niger-Congo language spoken primarily in Nigeria. There are between 18-25 million Igbo speakers living primarily in southeastern Nigeria in an area known as Igboland. Igbo is a national language of Nigeria and is also recognised in Equatorial Guinea. Igbo is made up of many different dialects which aren't mutually intelligible to other Igbo speakers at times. A standard for Igbo called 'Igbo izugbe' has been developed. Igbo is written in the Latin alphabet introduced by British colonialists and missionaries. Secret societies such as the Ekpe use nsibidi ideograms to write Igbo and other languages around its area of influence. Nsibidi is an ideographic writing system used for over 500 years.

Major cities where Igbo is most spoken include Onitsha, Enugu, Owerri (oh-weh-reh), Port Harcourt, and Asaba (in Igbo, ah-hah-bah).

Through the transatlantic slave trade, the Igbo language has influenced many creole languages in the Americas, especially in the former British Caribbean, including islands such as Jamaica, Barbados, Dominica, and Trinidad and Tobago. Variations of Igbo known as Suámo can be found in Cuba. Igbo is spoken by a significant number of people on Bioko island in Equatorial Guinea, formerly known as Fernando Po, and in micro-communities in Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea, and it is also spoken by recent migrants of Igbo descent all over the world.

Pronunciation guide[edit]

Igbo is a tonal language with a high, mid, and low range, in addition there are rising and falling tones. Accents are used to indicate the high and low tones; an acute accent such as 'ó' are used for high tones, and a grave accent such as 'è' is used for a low tone. There are further accents that indicate nasal tones. The lower dotted accent such as 'ọ' combined with a grave accent ('ọ̀') is used to indicate a low nasal tone, and an upper dotted accent such as 'ė' or a lower dotted accent with an acute accent ('ọ́') is used for a high nasal tone. The trema (¨) such as 'ö' or a simple dot underneath is used for a mid nasal tone. Other diacritics include the caron (ˇ) for rising tones, the circumflex (ˆ) for falling tones, and the macron (¯) for long vowels.

Vowels[edit]

Vowels in Igbo are very similar to those in English when there is little tone stress on them. Most of the times vowels in Igbo are written with accents indicating this tone.

vowel English equiv. vowel English equiv. vowel English equiv. vowel English equiv.
a like 'a' in "father" e like 'a' in "gate" but without the final 'i' sound i like 'ee' in "seen" short 'i' like the 'i' in "bit"
o like 'o' in "coat" short 'o' like the 'o' in "dog" u like 'oo' in "pool" short 'oo' like the 'oo' in "book"

Consonants[edit]

Consonants do not have a tone in Igbo apart from 'n' and 'm' which are the only letters that can be written with accent marks.

consonant English equiv. consonant English equiv. consonant English equiv. consonant English equiv.
b like 'b' in "bit" d like 'd' in "dim" f like 'f' in "feline" g like 'g' in "give"
h like 'h' in "hinge" j like 'j' in "jelly" k like 'k' in "kettle" l like 'l' in "limb"
m like 'm' in "mint" n like 'n' in "nit" ñ uncommon in English, but sounds like the 'ng' in " 'king" p like 'p' in "pit"
r like 'r' in "rent" s like 's' in "seam" t like 't' in "tea" v like 'v' in "villa"
w like 'w' in "win" y like 'y' in "yield" z like 'z' in "zink"

Common diphthongs[edit]

diphthong English equiv. diphthong English equiv. diphthong English equiv. diphthong English equiv.
ch like 'ch' in "cheese" gb an explosive sound not found in English, but a 'b' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'g' gh like the greek 'ghamma' when it comes before 'a' or 'o' (a 'h' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'g') gw like 'gw' in Welsh "Gwyn"
kp not in English, but a 'p' sound is made while shaping the mouth for 'k' kw like 'q' in "queen" nw like 'w' in "wag", but nasal like a baby crying ny like 'ny' in "canyon"
sh like 'sh' in "ship"

Grammar[edit]

Igbo is considered an agglutinative language. A number of affixed phonemes denote the tense of a verb in addition to the other modifications of a verb root; an example using òjéḿbà, "traveller", can be split into the morphemes: ò, pronoun for animate and inanimate objects or "he, she", verb meaning "travel, walk, embark", ḿbà "town, city, country, foreign lands, abroad" resulting in "he/she/it-go[es]-abroad".

Nouns in Igbo have no grammatical number and there are no gendered pronouns or objects. Igbo grammar generally maintains a subject–verb–object clause order; mádụ̀ àbụ́ghị̀ chúkwú, "human[s]-[it]is[not]-God", "man is not God". Adjectives in Igbo are post-modifiers, although there are very few Igbo adjectives in the closed class; many so called "adjectives" in Igbo are considered nouns, especially when the word is a pre-modifier like im ágádí nwóké transliterated as "elderly man". Igbo features vowel harmony between two vowels and commonly features vowel assimilation where a preceding vowel influences the articulation (or the elision with /a/) of the next such as in ǹk'â, "this one", analysed as ǹkè "of" and â "this". Igbo syllable shapes are CV (consonant, vowel) which is the most common, V, and N which are syllabic nasals, there are also semi vowels like /CjV/ in the word bìá (/bjá/) "come" and /CwV/ in gwú /ɡʷú/ "swim".

Addressing people[edit]

Greeting others

Using special greetings when addressing elders of the society and those generally significantly older than you is expected in Igbo society. In smaller communities such as villages, it is also expected of non-elders to greet every elder whenever you first see them in a day. Here are some of the greetings used between different levels of the society.

Formal

kèdú (kay-DOO
the most common formal greeting equivalent to 'hello'
ǹdêwó (in-DAY-WOAH
A formal greeting that can be used to greet anyone
má-ḿmá (MAHM-MA
this is the most common polite term when addressing an elder or important person in society, this is used alongside the persons name and an honorific
ǹnộ (in-NOORE
a greeting mostly used in the northern part of Igboland

Informal

ǹdâ (in-DAH
can be an equivalent of 'what's up'
ánị̄ (AH-NEE
more direct, used only by friends, insulting if used on someone older than the greeter
ọ̀lị́à (aw-LEE-yah
more direct, mostly from a friend to a friend
ọ̀gị́nị́ kwánụ́/gị́nị́ mẹ̀rẹ̀ (aw-GEE-NEE KU-WA-NOO/GEE-NEE meh-reh
very direct and informal, literally 'what's happening'.

Group

There are greetings usually made to a group of people which can also be used to boost morale.

Kwénù (QUAY-noo
The most common group greeting, used only by males.
Dǎlụ́'nụ̀ (DAH-LOO nooh
Meaning literally 'thank you all', this can be used by anybody.



In Igbo society there are different ways of addressing people depending on their status in society. In order to show good manners and politeness, Igbo speakers are expected to use honorifics to address those that are significantly older than them (usually those old enough to be an uncle or grandparent, sure enough 'uncle' is sometimes used as an honorific). Here are some of the basic honorifics used in Igbo society.

māzị́- (MAH-ZEE
The most basic honorific for males, about equivalent to Mister. Mazi Ibekwe: Mister Ibekwe
dâ- (DAH)
The most basic honorific for females, about equivalent to Misses, Miss, and most similar to madam or ma'am. Da Mgbechi: Madam Mgbechi
dê-dè- (DEH-deh
Another honorific for males, usually used in an informal setting, may be seen as the male equivalent of 'da', it has no equivalent in English, but is similar to saying 'big brother'. It is usually shortened to 'de'.
ìchíè- (ee-CHEE-ye
literally elder, used to address male elders.
ńzè- (IN-zay
a noble title for males found in the northern parts of Igboland.
lộlọ̀- (LOH-loh
can be interpreted as 'dane' or 'dutchess', a title given to the wife of a titled man.

For those younger than yourself, they can be called by their gender, 'nwóké' male or 'nwânyị̀' female, or by 'nwá' (WAHN) meaning child. This form of address can be patronising.

Reading and writing[edit]

The Igbo language was first inscribed with ideographs known as nsibidi which originated in the Cross River region of Africa. Nsibidi symbols were used to represent ideas and often times specific objects. British colonialism since the late 19th century till 1960 has wiped away nisbidi from general use and has led to the introduction of the Roman-script-based orthography known as ọ́nwụ́ which developed from several revisions of Roman orthographies in the 19th century and early 20th century. The first book written in Igbo was an Ibo-Isuama primer by Bishop Ajayi Crowther, a Sierra Leonean creole of Egba-Yoruba descent in the 19th century. As a tonal language, the Latin script has been modified to fit the different tones and sounds of the Igbo language.

Igbo-language literary works have been few since colonialism introduced an alphabet. Literature in English by Igbo writers on Igbo society, however, have achieved international acclaim, the most popular of these books, Things Fall Apart, written by author Chinua Achebe, deals with the subject of colonialism and the destruction of Igbo society in the late 19th century.

The Igbo languages' tonality may be confusing at times homonyms are differentiated by the way that the tones are expressed. Diacritics are used to signal tones in written Igbo along with other special characters such as the dot over (˙) and underneath (.). /akwa/ is a notorious homonym in Igbo which can be interpreted in different tones as /ákwà/ ('cloth'), àkwá ('egg'), /ákwá/ ('cry, crying'), /àkwà/ ('bed'), /àkwà/ ('bridge').

Written Igbo[edit]

There are hundreds of Igbo dialects and Igboid languages spoken by different clans and former nation-states. The high variation and low mutual intelligibility between many Igbo dialects has been a hindrance to written Igbo and Igbo literature over the years, this has lead to the development of a standard form of Igbo known as 'standard Igbo' or Igbo izugbe. This standard form was based on dialects around the central parts of Igboland. Although it is was created to boost Igbo literature, it has received backlash and opposition from Igbo speakers such as author Chinua Achebe, who prefer to speak their own dialects. Igbo izubge is the standard used in the curriculum of Igbo-language studies.

Phrase list[edit]

Basics[edit]

Common signs
Although most signs in the Igbo-speaking areas of Nigeria may be in English, it will still be helpful to learn some of these signs in case you find your self in a more rural community.

OPEN 
Mèpè (may-pay)
CLOSED 
M'Mèchi (MAY-chi-EH-LE)
ENTRANCE 
Ọ̀bụ̀bà (aw-boo-ba)
EXIT 
ífụ́fụ́ / Úzọ Èzí (MM-FUH-FUH / OO-zor AY-ZEE)
PUSH 
Núo (NOO)
PULL 
Dúọ̌ (DOOR)
LOCK 
kpóchíe (IM-paw-SI)
MEN 
Umunwóke (OO-MOO-wow-KAY)
WOMEN 
Umunwañyi (OO-MOO-wa-yi)
FORBIDDEN 
Ihe Nsọ (I-HYEAH IN-saw)


Hello. 
Ndêwó. (in-DEEH-WO)
Hello. (informal
Kèdú. (keh-DO)
Hello. (casual
Ǹdâ. (in-DAH)
Welcome 
Nnộ (in-NOOR)
How are you? 
Kèdú kà ímẹ̀rẹ̀? (keh-DOO kah E meh-reh)
How are you (Informal) Kedu
Fine, thank you. 
A dị̀ ḿmá,ị̀melâ (AW dee IM-MA)
What is your name? 
Kèdú áhà gị́? (keh-DO AH-ha GEE)
My name is ______ . 
Áhàm bụ̀ ______, or Áfàm bụ̀ (: AH-ham boo _____ .)
Nice to meet you. 
Obu ihe obi uto imata gi. (obuu ehe obi uu'to ima ta gi)
Please. 
Bīkó. (BEE-COE)
Thank you. 
Dālụ́/Imẹ̄lá. (DAA-LOO/EE-MEH-LAH)
You're welcome. 
Bàtà wà. (Ba ta waa)
Yes. 
Éey, Ëhh. (ey, AEH)
No. 
Ḿbà . (IM-bah)
Excuse me. (getting attention
Chere, chètú. (Chey rey, CHE-too)
Excuse me. (begging pardon
isi Gini, é weli íwé. (ishi gi ni, A WELLI E-WAY)
I'm sorry. 
Ndo; Gbághàrám. (in-DOH, BA-gah-RAM)
Goodbye 
Kà ómésíá. (kah O-MEH-SI-YA)
Goodbye (informal
ányị́ ga hú. (Anyi i, gaa ahU)
I can't speak Igbo [well]. 
A'naghi'm a sú Igbo [ọfuma]. (AH na yim AH sue EEG-BOW [AW-FOO-MAH])
Do you speak English? 
ị́ na sú Bèké ? (EE na SOO BAY-KAY?)
Is there someone here who speaks English? 
Ọ di onye nọ nga nweríke ị́súfù bèké? (OR dee on-yeh NOR in-GAH weh-RI-KI SUH-foo beh-KEH?)(O nwere onye no ebe a n'asu bekee?)
Help! 
Nyerem áká! (NYEM AH-KAH)
Look out! 
Lèpu kwá anya! (LAY-MA KWA)
Good morning. 
Ibọla chi. (e BORLA CHI)
Good evening. 
mgbede ọma . (MM-GBAYDAY oma'a)
Good night. 
Kà chí bọ̌. (ka CHI BAW)
I don't understand. 
À ghọ́tàghìm. (ah GAW-tah-gim)
Where is the toilet? 
Ké ébé ḿkpóchí dì? (keh EH BEH MM-K-PO-CHEE dee)

Problems[edit]

Body parts

head 
ísí (EE-SEE)
face
íhú (EE-HUE)
eyes
ányá (AHN-YAH)
ears
ńtị̀ (IN-tih)
nose
ímí (EE-MEE)
throat
ákpị̀rị́ (AHK-pee-REE)
chin
àgbà (ahg-bah)
neck 
ólú (OH-LOO)
shoulders
úbú (OO-BOO)
chest
ugwùlùgwù (ooh-gwoo-loo-gwoo)
waist
úkwù (OO-kwoo)
arms
ihü áká (EE-HUE AH-KAH)
wrists
nkwekọ áká (nn-kweh-koh AH-KAH)
fingers
m̀kpị́sị́ áká (mm-KPEE-SEE AH-KAH)
hands
áká (AH-KAH)
elbow
ǹkù áká (in-koo AH-KAH)
buttocks
ị́kẹ̀ (EE-keh)
thigh
àkpàtà (ahk-pah-tah)
knee
íkpèrè (EEK-peh-reh)
legs
úkwụ (OO-KOOH)
foot
ọ̀kpà (oh-k-pah)


Leave me alone. 
Hafum áká. (HAH-foom AH-KAH)
Don't touch me! 
É mètùla'm áka! (EH meh-tu-lam AH-KAH)
I'll call the police. 
M ga kpọrọ ndi ùwé oji. (M gị́ POR in-di u-WEH OH-JI-)
Police! 
Polị́sị́/Uwè ojị́ị́! (poe-LEE-see/OO-way oh-JEE!)
Stop! Thief! 
Kwushí! Onye óshị́/ohi! (koo-shee! OH-NYE OH-shi)
I need your help. 
Á chorom kí nyérém àkà. (AH chom kee nyeah-m AH-KAH)
It's an emergency. 
Ọ bu ihé ọsịsọ. (OR boo i-he OH-si-sor)
I'm lost. 
À mághi'm ébé'm nọr. (AH MAH-gim EH-BEH-m NOR)
I lost my bag. 
Akpám è fuólé. (ak-pam EH FU-OH-lay)
I lost my wallet. 
Àkpà égóm è fuólé. (ak-pah EH-GOME eh FU-OH-LAY)
I'm sick. 
Àhụ nà anwụm. (ah-HOO NAH woom)
I've been injured. 
Á meruolam àhú. (AH MEH-RU-AW-LAM ah-hoo)
I need a doctor. 
Onye ògwò orịá ka mu n'achọ. (OH-yeh OH-gw-oh OH-ri-ya KAM chor)
Can I use your phone? 
M nwèríke iweretu fonu gí? (IM weh-RI-Ke iwee re-Tu fo-nu GEE)

Numbers[edit]

1 One 
Ótù (OH-too)
2 Two 
Àbụ́ọ́ (ah-BWORE)
3 Three 
Àtọ́ (ah-TOH)
4 Four 
Ànọ́ (ah-NORE)
5 Five 
Ìsé (ee-SAY)
6 Six 
Ìsî (ee-SEE-ee)
7 Seven 
Àsâ (ah-SAH-ah)
8 Eight 
Àsátọ́ (ah-SAH-TAW)
9 Nine 
Ìtôlú (ee-TOE-LOO)
10 Ten 
Ìrí (ee-REE)
11 Eleven 
Ìrí nà ótù (ee-REE nah OH-too)
12 Twelve 
Ìrí nà àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-BWORE)
13 Thirteen 
Ìrí nà àtọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-TOH)
14 Fourteen 
Ìrí nà ànọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-NORE)
15 Fifteen 
Ìrí nà isé (ee-REE nah ee-SAY)
16 Sixteen 
Ìrí nà ìsî (ee-REE nah ee-SEE-e)
17 Seventeen 
Ìrí nà àsâ (ee-REE nah ah-SAH-ah)
18 Eighteen 
Ìrí nà àsátọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-SAH-toh)
19 Nineteen 
Ìrí nà Ìtôlú (ee-REE nah ee-TOE-LOO)
20 Twenty 
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE / AW-GUH)
21 Twenty one 
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na ótù (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah OH-too)
22 Twenty two 
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-BWORE)
23 Twenty three 
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àtọ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-TOH)
30 Thirty 
Ìrí àtọ́ (ee-REE ah-TOH)
40 Forty 
Ìrí ànọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE ah-NORE / AW-GUH ah-BWORE)
50 Fifty 
Ìrí ìsé (ee-REE ee-SAY)
60 Sixty 
Ìrí ìsî (ee-REE EE-SEE-e)
70 Seventy 
Ìrí àsâ (ee-REE ah-SAH-ah)
80 Eighty 
Ìrí àsátọ́ (ee-REE ah-SAH-toh)
90 Ninety 
Ìrí Ìtôlú (ee-REE ee-TOE-LOO)
100 Hundred 
Ńnárị́ / Ọ́gụ́ ìsé (IN-NAH-REE / AW-GUH ee-SAY)
200 Two hundred 
Ńnárị́ àbụ́ọ́ (IN-NAH-REE ah-BWORE)
300 Three hundred 
Ńnárị́ àtọ́ (IN-NAH-REE ah-TOH)
400 Four hundred 
Ńnárị́ ànọ́ / Ńnụ̀ (in-NAH-REE ah-NORE / IN-nuh)
1000 Thousand 
Púkú (POO-KOO)
2000 Two Thousand 
Púkú àbụ́ọ́ (POO-KOO ah-BWORE)
3000 Three Thousand 
Púkú àtọ́ (POO-KOO ah-TOH)
10,000 Ten Thousand 
Púkú ìrí (POO-KOO ee-RE)
100,000 A hundred thousand 
Púkú ńnárí (POO-KOO IN-NAH-REE)
1,000,000 Million 
Ńdè (IN-day)
100,000,000 A hundred million 
Ńdè ńnárí (IN-day IN-NAH-REE)
1,000,000,000 Billion 
Ìjérí (ee-JAY-REE)

Time[edit]

time 
ógè (OH-gey)
now 
ùgbúà (oog-BU-wa)
later 
èmésiá (OH-MEH-si-YAH)
before 
mbụ̀ (mbu'u)
daily 
kwa ubochi (kua ubo chii)
morning 
ụ̀tútụ̀ (ooh-TUH-tuh)
afternoon 
èhíhìè (ey-HEE-hye)
evening 
m̀gbèdè/ànyàsì (im-be-de ahn-yah-see)
dusk 
ùrúlúchí (oo-ROO-LOO-CHEE)
night
ábàlì (AH-bah-lee)

Clock time[edit]

Clock 
Élékéré (AY-LAY-KAY-REH)
six o'clock in the morning
élékéré ìsî nke ụ̀tụ́tụ̀ (AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-SEE-ee nke oo-TUH-tuh)
nine o'clock AM 
élékéré ìtôlú nke ụtútụ (AY-LAY-KAY-REH ee-TOE-LOO nke oo-TUH-tuh)
noon 
èhíhìè (ey-HEE-hee-yay)
one o'clock PM 
élékéré ótù nke ehihie (AY-LAY-KAY-REH OH-too,nke ehi hiye)
two o'clock PM 
élékéré abuọ nke ehihie (AY-LAY-KAY-REH ah-BWORE nkey ehihie)
midnight 
ètítì ábàlì (ay-TEE-tee AH-bah-lee)

Duration[edit]

Second 
Ńkéjì (IN-KAY-jee)
Minute 
Mkpìlìkpì ógè (im-pee-lee-pee OH-gey)
Hour 
Elekere (eley key rey)
Day 
Ụ́bọ̀chị̀ (OO-boh-chee)
Week 
Ízù (EE-zoo)
Month 
Ọ́nwạ́ (AW-WAH)
Year 
Áfọ̀ (AH-fore)

Days[edit]

Ịzu afia/ahia - Market week

The traditional week in Igbo speaking communities consists of 4 days, each are indicative of a particular market of many different communities. The market days were established by the god-like Eri, an important Igbo ancestor of the 1st millennium AD. Market days are very important to various Igbo communities as they are used to mark major events in the community. Each community is assigned a special day for their market; in a village group no other markets are to be held on a particular villages day. The names of the market days are also used for cardinal directions in some Igbo communities.

These traditional market days are:

Àfọ̀/Àhọ̀ (ah-four
corresponding to the north
ǹkwọ́ (in-KWOR
corresponding to the south
èké (ay-KAY
corresponding to the east
órìè / óyè (OH-ree-yeah
corresponding to the west


today 
tâ, ụ́bọ̀chị̀ tâ (TAH, OO-boh-chi TAH)
yesterday 
ńnyáhụ̀, chí gara aga (IN-YAH-fuh, Chi gara agaa)
tomorrow 
échí/échí na abia abia (AY-CHEE)
this week 
ízù ǹkâ (EE-zoo in-KAH)
last week 
ízù gara aga (EE-zoo LAH-RAH-NEE)
next week 
izù n'abia (ee-ZOO nah-BYAH)
Sunday 
Ụbọchị úkà (oo-BOH-chi oo-KAH)
Monday 
Mondè (MOHN-dae)
Tuesday 
Tusde (toos-dae)
Wednesday 
Wensde (WENS-dae)
Thursday 
Tosdè (TOHS-dae)
Friday 
Fraidè (FRY-dae)
Saturday 
Satde (SAHT-dae)

Months[edit]

Oguaro/afọ - Traditional calendar

The calendar of the Igbo people is known as Oguaro or Oguafor (lit. 'counting of the years'). Month in Igbo is ọnwa (lit. 'moon'), year is 'afọ'. The traditional Igbo year has 13 months which are usually named after their position in the year; most are named after a religious ceremony or after a certain deity such as Ana the mother alusi (deity) of the earth. The traditional 13 month calendar is rarely used in Igbo society, instead the Gregorian 12 month calendar is used. Below are the months of the year in the traditional 13 week Oguaro calendar and their Gregorian equivalents.

Months (Ọ́nwạ́) 
Gregorian equivalent
Ọ́nwạ́ Mbụ (AW-WAH MM-BOO
3rd week of February
Ọ́nwạ́ Abuọ (AW-WAH AH-bu-wor
March
Ọ́nwạ́ Ife Eke (AW-WAH EE-fay AY-KAY
April
Ọ́nwạ́ Anọ (AW-WAH AH-nor
May
Ọ́nwạ́ Agwụ (AW-WAH AH-goo
June
Ọ́nwạ́ Ifejiọkụ (AW-WAH EE-fay-jee-OR-koo
July
Ọ́nwạ́ Alọm Chi (AW-WAH AH-LOHM chi
August to early September
Ọ́nwạ́ Ilo Mmụọ (AW-WAH EE-low MM-MORE
Late September
Ọ́nwạ́ Ana (AW-WAH AH-NAH
October
Ọ́nwạ́ Okike (AW-WAH OH-kee-kay
Early November
Ọ́nwạ́ Ajana (AW-WAH AH-jah-nah
Late November
Ọ́nwạ́ Ede Ajana (AW-WAH AY-DAY ah-jah nah
Late November to December
Ọ́nwạ́ Ụzọ Alụsị (AW-WAH oo-ZOR AH-LUH-SEE
January to Early February


The Gregorian calendar is translated into Igbo either by naming the twelve months by their position in the calendar, or by using loan words from English.

January 
Ọnwa Mbụ, Januari (AW-WAH OH-too, JAH-noo-wa-ree)
February 
Ọnwa Abuọ, Febureri (AW-WAH ah-BWORE, FEH-boo-way-ree)
March 
Ọnwa Àtọ, Machi (AW-WAH ah-TOH, MAH-chi)
April 
Ọnwa Ànȯ, Eprulu (AW-WAH ah-NORE, AY-prool-oo)
May 
Ọnwa Ise, Me (AW-WAH ee-SAY, MEH)
June 
Ọnwa Ishii, Jun (AW-WAH EE-SHE-e, JOON)
July 
Ọnwa Asaa, Julai (AW-WAH ah-SAH-ah, JOO-lai)
August 
Ọnwa Asatọ, Ogost (AW-WAH ah-SAH-toh, AW-gost)
September 
Ọnwa Itoolu, Seputemba (AW-WAH ee-TOE-LOO, SEP-tehm-BAH)
October 
Ọnwa Iri, Oktoba (AW-WAH ee-REE, OK-toe-BAH)
November 
Ọnwa Iri na Ótu, Novemba (AW-WAH ee-REE nah OH-too, NO-vehm-BAH)
December 
Ọnwa Iri na Abuọ, Disemba (AW-WAH ee-REE nah ah-BWORE, DEE-sem-bah)

Seasons[edit]

There are only two seasons in the Igbo homeland; the dry season and the rainy season. There is also a dusty trade wind known as harmattan throughout west Africa.

Rainy season 
Ùdù mmíri (oo-doo MM-MEE-REE)
Dry season 
Ọ̀kọ̀chì (aw-koh-chee)
harmattan 
ụ́gụ̀lụ̀ (OO-goo-loo)

Writing time and date[edit]

The Igbo have adopted the Western way of writing the time and date, most of the times dates are written as they would in English speaking country's (dd/mm/yyyy). These are soome of the terms for date and time in Igbo.

Year 
Afọ (AH-fore)
Decade 
Afọ iri (AH-fore ee-REE)
Century 
ọchié (oh-CHEE-yeah)

Colours[edit]

colour attribute, emit 
chä (CHAH)
It is... 
Ọ dị... (AW dee)
It is coloured... 
Ọ nà chá... (AW na chah)
black 
oji (oh-JEE)
white 
ọchá (aw-CHA)
gray 
ntụ ntụ, gre (in-TOO in-TOO, GREY)
red 
mmẹ-mmẹ, uhie (m-MEH-m-MEH, OO-hee-ye)
blue 
alulu, blu (ah-loo-loo, BLOO)
yellow 
édo, ògùlù, yélo (EY-doe, OH-goo-loo, YEAR-loe)
green 
ọchá ndù (AW-cha in-doo)
orange 
ọchá mmanu mmanu, orenji (AW-cha MM-MAH-NOO MM-MAH-NOO, OH-rehn-jee)
purple 
òdòdò (oh-doe-doe)
brown 
ńchárá, àkpammanụ, brawnu (IN-CHA-RA, AKH-pah-im-manu, BROW-noo)

Family[edit]

Father 
Nnà, Mpá (NN-nah, mm-PAH)
Mother 
Nne, Mmá (NN-neh, mm-MAH)
Older Brother 
Nwannem nwoke (WAHN-NEM woah-kay)
Older Sister 
Nwannem nwanyi (WAHN-NEM WAHN-yee)
Younger Brother 
Nwannem nwoke ntà (WAHN-NEM woah-kay NN-tah)
Younger Sister 
Nwannem nwanyi ntà (WAHN-NEM WAHN-yee NN-tah)
Grandfather 
Nna nna/nne (NN-nah NN-nah/NN-NEH)
Grandmother 
Nne nne (NN-NEH-NN-NEH)
Uncle 
dédè (DEH-deh)
Aunt 
àntí (ahn-TEE)
Husband 
Dí (DEE)
Wife 
Nwunyè (WEE-yeah)
Son 
Nwam nwoke (WAHM woah-kay)
Daughter 
Nwam nwanyi (WAHM WAHN-yee)
First Son 
Ókpárá (OK-PAH-RAH)
First Daughter 
Àdá (ah-DAH)
Middle son 
ōlū (oh-loo)
Last child 
Ọdụdụ nwa (aw-DOO-DOO wah)
Grandchild 
nwa nwa (WAH-WAH)
In-law 
Ọgọ (aw-goh)

Transportation[edit]

Bus and train[edit]

How much is a ticket to _____? 
Égó òlé ka tiketi nke na ga _____? (AY-GO oh-LEY kah tee-keh-tee dih in-KAY nah gah)
One ticket to _____, please. 
Nyem ótù tiket nke na ga _____, biko. (YEHM OH-too TEE-keht in-KAY NAH GAH _____, BEE-COE)
Where does this train/bus go? 
Ébé òlé ka ụgbo igwẹ/bosu nka na ga? (AY-BOW-LAY kah oog-bow EE-GWEH/BOR-soo in-KAH nah GAH)
Where is the train/bus to _____? 
Ébé òlé ka ụgbo igwẹ/bosu dị, nke na ga _____? (AY-BOW-LAY kah oog-bow EE-GWEH/BOR-soo dee, in-KAY NAH GAH _____?)
Does this train/bus stop in _____? 
Ụgbo igwẹ/bosu nka, ọ nà kúshí na _____? (oog-bow EE-GWEH/BOR-soo in-KAH, aw nah KOO-SHEE nah _____?)
When does the train/bus for _____ leave? 
Mgbe òle ka ụgbo igwẹ/bosu nke na ga _____? nà fú? (mm-beh OH-LAY kah oog-bow EE-GWEH/BOR-su in-KAY nah GAHH _____?)
When will this train/bus arrive in _____? 
Mgbe òle ka ụgbo igwẹ/bosu nkè gi ru _____? (mm-beh OH-LAY kah oog-bow EE-GWEH/BOR-su in-KAY GEE- ROO _____?)

Directions[edit]

up 
élú (AY-LOO)
down 
nàlà (nah-lah)
atop 
nà élú (nah AY-LOO)
under 
okpúrù (oak-KPOO-roo)
front 
nà íshí, nà ihü (nah EE-SHEE, nah EE-HUE)
back 
nà àzú (nah-ah-ZOO)
How do I get to _____ ? 
Òtùòlé kǎm gi rú ______? (oh-too-oh-LAY KAHM GEE-RUE)
...the train station? 
...ébé ụ̀gbọ́ ígwè nà kụ́shị́? (AY-BAY oohg-BOW EE-gweh nah KOO-SHEE?)
...the bus station? 
...ébé bọ́s stéshọ̀n? (AY-BAY BOS STAY-shon?)
...the airport? 
... ẹ̄pọ̀tụ̀? (EH-poh-too?)
...uptown? 
...énú ànị? (AY-NOO ah-nee)
...downtown? 
...àzú obodo? (ah-ZOO oh-bow-doe)
...the youth hostel? 
...ụlọ úmù ndi yut? (ooh-loh OO-moo IN-DEE YOO-t)
...the _____ hotel? 
...ébé hotel _____ ? (AY-BAY hoe-tell)
...the American/Canadian/Australian/British consulate? 
...ébé ndi mbiàmbiá Amerika/Kanada/Ostrailia/Briten? (AY-BAY IN-DEE mm-byah-BYAH...)
Where are there a lot of... 
Ébé olé kà Í gí nwétá óké... (AY-BAY oh-LAY kah EE GEE WEH-TAH O-KAY)
...hotels? 
...ébém gi hï? (AY-BEHM GEE HEE)
...restaurants? 
...úlọ nri? (OOH-loh in-REE)
...bars? 
...úlọ mmányá? (OOH-loh IM-MAHN-YAH)
...sites to see? 
...ébé nlènlé kwánú? (AY-BAY in-lehn-LAY KWA-NOO)
Can you show me on the map? 
Ì gi zim òtú úzọ/map? (ee GEE zeem oh-TOO OO-zor/MAH-pu)
street 
okpóló ilo (ohk-PO-LOK ee-LOW)
Turn right. 
Gbá na áká nri./Gba raitu. (BAH nah AH-KAH REE./BAH RAI-too)
Turn left. 
Gbá na áká èkpè./Gba leftu. (BAH nah AH-KAH ehk-peh./BAH LEHF-too)
right 
áká nri, áká Ikéngà, raitu (AH-KAH REE, AH-KAH ee-ken-gah, RAI-too)
left 
áká èkpè, leftu (AH-KAH ehk-pe, LEHF-too)
straight ahead 
gàwá na ihü (gah-WAH nah EE-HUE)
towards the _____ 
nọ̀ nà ụ́zọ̀ _____ (noh nah OO-zor)
past the _____ 
gáfè _____ (GAH-fay)
before the _____ 
nà ísí _____ (nah EE-SEE)
Watch for the _____. 
Lèmá kwá _____. (leh-MAH KWAH)
intersection 
jonkshon (JONK-shon)
north 
òlìlé anyanwü, àfọ̀ (oh-lee-LAY AHN-YAH-WOO, ah-four)
south 
nlédà anyanwü, ǹkwọ̀ (in-LAY-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, in-kwor)
east 
ọwụwà anyanwü, èké (OH-WOO-WAH AHN-YAH-WOO, ay-KAY)
west 
ọdịdà anyanwü, órìè (oh-dee-dah AHN-YAH-WOO, OH-ree-yeah)
uphill 
élú ụ́gwụ (AY-LOO OO-GWOOH)
downhill 
ụ́kwụ́ ụ́gwụ (OO-KWOO OO-GWOOH)

Taxi[edit]

Taxi! 
Éess, Tasi! (AY-see, TAH-see)
Take me to _____, please. 
Nwèrém gá _____, biko. (weh-REHM GAH _____, BEE-COE.)
How much does it cost to get to _____? 
Égóle kọ di Í jé _____? (AY-GO-LAY KOH dee EE JAY _____?)
Take me there, please. 
Nwèrém jé ébé áhü, biko. (weh-REHM JAY AY-BAY AH-hoo, BEE-COE.)

Lodging[edit]

Do you have any rooms available? 
I nwere ụla di? (EE weh-reh oo-lah dee?)
How much is a room for one person/two people? 
Egole kọ di maka ótu madu/madu abụo? (AY-GO-LAY core dee mah-kah OH-too MAH-doo/MAH-doo ah-bu-wor?)
Does the room come with... 
... ọ di na ụla? (aw dee na oo-lah?)
...bedsheets? 
...ákwà àkwà edinà? (AH-KWAH ah-kwah EH-dee-nah?)
...a bathroom? 
...ụlà I sa ahu? (OO-lah EE SAH ah-HOO?)
...a telephone? 
...telefonu? (teh-leh-FOE-nu?)
...a TV? 
...Tivi? (TEE-vee?)
May I see the room first? 
I nweriki hu ụla nke na otu mgbe? (ee weh-REE-KEE HUH oo-lah nn-kay na OH-too mm-gbay?)
Do you have anything quieter? 
I nwere ihe dajụgo? (EE weh-reh EE-HEE-NYEH DAH-JOO-GO?)
...bigger? 
...ukwu? (OO-KWOO?)
...cleaner? 
...di ọcha? (DEE aw-CHA?)
...cheaper? 
...di ọnu ànì? (DEE aw-NOO ah-nee?)
OK, I'll take it. 
Ngwanu, kam nwere ya. (NN-GWA-NOO, KAHM WEHREH YAH)
I will stay for _____ night(s). 
M gi nọ nga ábàli rúrú _____. (MM GEE NORE nn-GAH AH-bah-lee ROO-ROO _____.)
Can you suggest another hotel? 
Ọ di hotelu ozor? (aw dee hpe-TEH-loo aw-ZOR?)
Do you have a safe? 
I nwèrè ebe ha na kpachi ihe ndi madu? (ee weh-reh AY-BAY HAH nah PAH-CHI EE-HEE-NYE NN-DEE MAH-doo)
...lockers? 
...akpata mgbachi? (...ahk-kpah-tah mm-bah-chi?)
Is breakfast/supper included? 
azị ùtútù/nni anyasi ọ di? (AH-ZI ooh-TOO-tuh/NN-NI ah-nya-see aw dee?)
What time is breakfast/supper? 
Mgbe ole ka ha ne weta azị ùtútù/nni anyasi? (MM-beh oh-LAY kah HAH nay WEY-TAH ah-zee ooh-TOO-tuh/NN-NI ah-nya-see aw dee?)
Please clean my room. 
Hicha ụlam biko. (hee-CHAH oo-lah BEE-coe)
Can you wake me at _____? 
I nweriki kpọtem na _____? (ee weh-REE-KEE POH-TEHM nah...)
I want to check out. 
M chori chekuwe awutu. (MM chore-REE CHAY-KWOO AHW-too)

Money[edit]

Do you accept American/Australian/Canadian dollars? 
I na ná dọla ndi Amerika/Ostreliya/Kanada? (ee nah NAH-RAH DOH-lah IN-DEE...)
Do you accept British pounds? 
I na nárá pandu ndi Buriten? (ee nah NAH-RAH PAHN-doo IN-DEE boo-REE-ten?)
Do you accept credit cards? 
I na nárá kuredit kadu? (ee nah NAH-RAH koo-REH-DEET KAH-doo?)
Can you change money for me? 
I na tuwari ego? (ee nah TOO-WAH-REE AY-GO?)
Where can I get money changed? 
Ebole ka ha na tuwari ego? (eh-BOW-LAY kah HA nah TOO-WAH-REE AY-GO?)
Can you change a traveler's check for me? 
I nweriki gbanwe cheki turavulas nkem? (ee weh-REE-KEE BAH-WEH CHAY-kee too-RAH-VOO-LAHS in-CAME?)
Where can I get a traveler's check changed? 
Ebole ka ha na gbanwe turavulas cheki? (AY-BOW-LAY kah HAH nah BAH-WAY too-RAH-VOO-LAHS CHAY-kee?)
What is the exchange rate? 
Gini bu ekuschenji rétụ? (GEE-NEE boo ay-koo-SHEE-CHANGE-jee RAY-too?)
Where is an automatic teller machine (ATM)? 
Ebole ka ha na wefuta ego (ATM)? (AY-BOW-LAY kah HAH nah WAY-foo-TAH AY-GO?)

Eating[edit]

What do you say...

Thank you, please and sorry can be useful in any society. The Igbo forms of these phrases are as follows.

Ndo (in-DOE
In Igbo society, ndo is usually used to console someone whenever something bas happens to them, for example someone may say ndo to you if you trip over, but it generally isn't used to apologise, only in some cases.
Biko (bee-coe
'please', can also be used as an equivalent of 'excuse me'
Imeela (ee-MEH-lah
Literally 'you've done it', this is used as a term for gratitude, if someone brings you a meal, this would be a term to use.
Daalu (DAH-LOO
'thanks', this is the most similar to the English 'thank you' and is the most polite
Jisike (jee-SI-kay
Literally 'use strength', this term is used to show support for someone's hard work; if you see a cook working hard in the kitchen, you can say jisike, usually with a honorific, or if not use their gender ('nwoke' for male, 'nwaanyi' for female), so it would be 'nwaanyi jisike', and you will get a response like 'oh!' which is an expression of acknowledgement.


A table for one person/two people, please. 
Biko, tebulu ótù madu/madu abuọo. (BEE-COE, TEH-boo-loo OH-too MAH-doo/MAH-doo ah-boo-AW)
Can I look at the menu, please? 
Biko, kam hü menyu. (BEE-COE, KAHM HOO MEN-yoo)
Can I look in the kitchen? 
M nweríkí hü ekwü? (mm weh-REE-KEE HOO EH-kwuh)
Is there a house specialty? 
Ọ dì íhnyé nani ha ne shi nga? (aw dee EE-HEE-YEAH NAH-NEE HAH nay SHEE in-GAH?)
Is there a local specialty? 
Ọ dì ihe ori ha ma ndi ebe nka màkà? (aw dee EE-HEE-YEAH oh-REE HAH mah IN-DEE AY-BAY in-KAH-ah mah-kah?)
I'm a vegetarian. 
M bu vegitériyan. (MM boo veh-gee-TEH-REE-yen.)
I don't eat pork. 
À nam e ri ánú ézì. (ah-NAHM eh REE AH-NOO AY-zee.)
I don't eat beef. 
À nam e ri ánú efi. (ah-NAHM eh REE AH-NOO AY-FEE.)
I only eat kosher food. 
Nani ori kosha kam ne ri. (NAH-NEE oh-REE COE-sha KAHM neh REE.)
Can you make it "lite", please? (less oil/butter/lard
I nwereiki me ka ọ di ùfè, biko? (ee weh-REE-KEE MEH kah AW DEE oo-feh, BEE-COE?)
fixed-price meal 
Rụ ọnụ ori. (rooh AW-NOO oh-REE.)
a la carte 
Ihnye ori di (EE-HEE-YEAH oh-REE dee)
breakfast 
azị ūtụtù (ah-ZEE oo-TUH-tuh)
lunch 
azị efìfìe (ah-ZEE eh-fee-fi-yeah)
tea (meal
kwòze (kwòze)
supper 
azị anyàsì (AH-ZEE ahn-yah-see)
I want _____. 
M chọrọ _____. (MM chore-roh.)
I want a dish containing _____. 
M chọrọ órí _____. (MM chore-roh OH-REE)
chicken 
ánú ọkúkọ (AH-NOO aw-KOO-koh)
beef 
ánú efi (AH-NOO ay-FEE)
goat 
ánú éwú (AH-NOO AY-WOO)
fish 
azụ (AH-zoo)
ham 
ánú ezi (AH-NOO AY-ZEE)
sausage 
sọseji (SOH-seh-jee)
cheese 
chizu (CHEE-zoo)
yam 
jí (JEE)
eggs 
àkwá (ah-KWAH)
salad 
saladu (SAH-LAH-doo)
(fresh) vegetables 
abụbo (ndụ) (ah-boo-bore (IN-doo))
(fresh) fruit 
ạkpạ, mkpuru osisi, frutu (ndụ) (ah-kpah, im-POO-roo OH-SEE-SEE, FROO-too (IN-doo))
bread 
achicha (ah-chee-chah)
toast 
tosutu (TOE-SU-too)
noodles 
índomi (IN-DOE-mee)
rice 
osikapa (aw-see-kah-pah)
soup 
ǹsàlà, súpu (in-sah-lah, SOO-poo)
stew/soup (like gumbo
ófé (OH-FAY)
pepper soup 
ófé ǹsàlà (OH-FAY in-sah-lah)
beans 
àgwà (ah-gwah)
May I have a glass of _____? 
M nweriki were otu ágá ùgèbè _____? (mm weh-REE-KEE WEH-REH OH-too AH-GAH oo-geh-beh _____?)
May I have a cup of _____? 
M nweriki were otu ágá _____? (mm weh-REE-KEE WEH-REH OH-too AH-GAH _____?)
May I have a bottle of _____? 
M nweriki were otu kalama _____? (mm weh-REE-KEE WEH-REH OH-too KAH-lah-mah _____?)
coffee 
kọfi (KOR-fi)
tea (drink
ti (tee)
juice 
ùmì ósísí, jusu (oo-mee OH-SEE-SEE, joo-soo)
(bubbly) water 
mmiri ọgbụgbọ (mm-MEE-ree aw-gubu-gubor)
water 
mmiri (mm-MI-ri)
beer 
biye (bee-YEAH)
red/white wine 
waini ufie/ọcha (WINE-nee OO-fi-yeah/aw-CHAH)
May I have some _____? 
O kam nweturu _____ ntakiri? (aw KAHM WEH-TOO-ROO _____ IN-tah-KEE-REE?)
salt 
ńnú (IN-NOO)
black pepper 
ósò oji (OH-sow OH-JEE)
butter 
bọta (BOR-tah)
Excuse me, waiter? (getting attention of server)
Biko, onye nọ nga? (BEE-COE, oh-YEAH noh in-GAH?)
I'm finished. 
E mechalam. (EH MEH-CHAH-LAHM)
It was delicious. 
Ȯ dị otó. (AW dee oh-TOH)
Please clear the plates. 
Biko, nwefu efere ndia. (BEE-COE, WAY-foo AY-FAY-RAY IN-DEE-yah.)
The check, please. 
Ógwọ, biko. (OH-GWOR BEE-coe.)

Bars[edit]

I want to drink... 
Á chọm Í ñụ _____ (AH chore-mm EE g-NOO _____)
Do you serve alcohol? 
Ì nè ré ḿmáñyá? (ee NAY ray mm-MAN-YAH?)
Is there table service? 
Hà nè ché tébulu? (HAH neh CHAY TEH-boo-loo?)
A beer/two beers, please. 
Ótù ḿmáñyá/ḿmáñyá abụo, biko. (OH-too MM-MAHN-YA ah-BWORE, BEE-COE.)
A glass of red/white wine, please. 
Nkalama ḿmáñyá mmẹ mmẹ/ọchá, biko. (NN-kah-lah-mah MM-MAHN-YA m-MEH-m-MEH/aw-CHAH, BEE-COE)
A pint, please. 
Ótù paint, biko. (OH-too pah-int, BEE-COE)
A bottle, please. 
Ótù aba, biko. (OH-too AH-BAH, BEE-COE)
_____ (hard liquor) and _____ (mixer), please. 
_____ (ḿmáñyá ȯkụ) na _____ (ihe é jị à gbagwa ya), biko. ((MM-MAHN-YA AW-KUH) nah _____ (EE-HEE-YEAH AY jee ah g-BAH-GUAH YA), BEE-COE.)
stout 
stawt (STAH-woot)
whiskey 
wiski (WEE-skee)
vodka 
vodka (VOHD-kah)
rum 
rom (rohm)
spirit 
ḿmáñyá ȯkụ (MM-MAHN-YA AW-KUH)
palm wine 
ḿmáñyá ńgwọ, ḿmáñyá ṅkwú (MM-MAHN-YA NN-gwor, MM-MAHN-YA NN-KWOO)
water 
mmiri (MM-MEE-REE)
drinking water 
mmiri ọñuñu (MM-MEE-REE aw-nngoo-goo)
club soda 
clubu soda (CLAW-boo SOE-dah)
tonic water 
mmiri tawniki (MM-MEE-REE TOH-nee-kee)
orange juice 
jusu òlòlma (JOO-SOO aw-loh-mah)
drink 
ihe ọñuñu (EE-HEE-YEAH aw-nngoo-goo)
soft drink 
mínàrà (MEE-NAH-rah)
Coke (soda
Koku (COE-koo)
Do you have any bar snacks? 
Ì nwèrè ihe ntàntá? (EE weh-reh EE-HEE-YEAH nn-tah-nn-TAH?)
One more, please. 
Ótù ozọr, biko. (OH-too-aw-ZOR, BEE-COE)
Another round, please. 
Wètáriá háníle, biko. (weh-TAH-RI-YAH HAH-NEE-LAY, BEE-COE)
When is closing time? 
Mgbe ole ka Í nè méchí? (mm-bay oh-LAY kah EE nay MAY-CHEE?)
Cheers! 
Mma manu! (MM-MA MA-noo)

Shopping[edit]

Do you have this in my size? 
Ì nwẹrẹ ihëa na àsàm?/Ì nwẹrẹ ihëa na amàm? (...)
How much is this? 
Égó olé ka Ihe á di? (AY-GO o-Lay KA I-HYEN AHH DI)
That's too expensive. 
Ọ dì óké ọnü. (OR dee okay or-NU)
Would you take _____? 
Ì gi wéré _____? (ee GEE WAY RAY)
expensive 
óké ọnü (OH-KAY AW-NOO)
cheap 
ọnü ànì (AW-NOO ah-nee)
I can't afford it. 
E nweghim Í ki golu ya. (ay WEH-gim EE-KEE GO-LOO YA.)
I don't want it. 
À chom I ya. (AH chom E ya.)
You're cheating me. 
Ì na è fébém na ányá./I na ẹ mérém mu jobu. (EE neh FAY-BAY-M NAH AN-YAH./EE neh MEH-REH-MOO JOH-bu.)
I'm not interested. 
Ányám à nọghị nga áhü. (AHN-YAH-M ah noh-gee in-GAH-hoo.)
OK, I'll take it. 
Ngwanu, kam weri ya. (in-gwah-noo, KAHM weh-REE YAH.)
Can I have a bag? 
Ì nwẹrẹ àkpà? (ee weh-reh ahk-pah?)
Do you ship (overseas)? 
Ì nè réfù ihnye na ùfèsì? (ee neh REH-foo i-hee-yeah nah oo-feh-see?)
I need... 
M chọrọ... (MM chore-roh...)
...toothpaste. 
...údé ézé. (OO-DEH AY-ZAE.)
...a toothbrush. 
...átụ́. (AH-TOO.)
...tampons. 
...ihnye àhú umunwanyi tamponu. (ee-hee-yeah ah-HOO OO-moo-WAH-yee TAM-poh-noo.)
...soap. 
...ńchà. (NN-cha.)
...shampoo. 
...ńchà ńtùtù. (IN-cha IN-too-too.)
...pain reliever. (e.g., aspirin or ibuprofen
...ihnye íshí ọwuwa/ihnye nwéfu ihnye ölulu. (EE-HEE-YEAH EE-SHEE oh-WOO-WAH/EE-HEE-YEAH nn-WEH-foo EE-HEE-YEAH ooh-loo-loo.)
...cold medicine. 
...ȯgvụ óyí. (OG-voo OH-YEE.)
...stomach medicine. 
...ȯgvụ áfȯ. (OG-voo AH-FOUR.)
...a razor. 
...aguba. (ah-goo-bah.)
...an umbrella. 
...òché anwü. (oh-CHE AH-wooh.)
...sunblock lotion. 
...udè màkà ánwú. (ooh-day mah-kah AH-WUH.)
...a postcard. 
...postu cad. (POE-STU cahd)
...postage stamps. 
...stampu nke ózí. (STAHMP-oo n-KAY OH-ZEE)
...batteries. 
...batiri. (BAH-TEE-ree)
...writing paper. 
...akwukwọ i de ihe. (AH-KOO-KWOH EE DEH EE-hee-yeah)
...a pen. 
...biki. (BEE-kee)
...English-language books. 
...Ákwúkwó há dèrè nà bèké. (AH-KOO-KWOH HAH day-ray nah bay-kay)
...English-language magazines. 
...Ákwúkwó magazin nke bèké. (AH-KOO-KWOH mah-gah-ZEEN in-KAY bay-kay)
...an English-language newspaper. 
...nuspepa hé dèrè na bèké. (NOOS-peh-pah HEY day-ray nah bay-kay)
...an English-English dictionary. 
...dishonari bèké. (DEE-SHON-NAH-ree bay-kay)
...a mask. 
...ihü ékpo. (EE-HUE EK-POE)
...souvenir 
...ihe òménàlà. (EE-HE-YEAH oh-MEH-nah-lah)

Driving[edit]

I want to rent a car. 
Ḿ chọ̀rị́ gō mótò. (MM chore-RI GOO MOE-toe)
Can I get insurance? 
Á chọ̀m̀ íkíké mótò? (AH cho-mm I-KEE-KAY MOH-toe)
stop (on a street sign
kụ̀shị́ (koo-SHEE)
one way 
ụ́zọ̀ ótù (OO-zoh OH-too)
yield 
chāḿ ụ́zọ̀ (CHAAM OO-zaw)
no parking 
É nyèdòlù (EH ye-do-loo)
speed limit 
ézú ọ́sọ́ ụ́zọ̀ (EH-ZOO AW-SORE OO-zor)
gas (petrol) station 
ụ́lọ́ petrol (OOH-LAW peh-TROLL)
petrol 
petrol (peh-TROLL)
diesel 
deezulu (DEE-zooloo)

Authority[edit]

I haven't done anything wrong. 
Ọ̀ dị́ghị̀ íhyéḿ mẹ̀rẹ̀. (aw DEE-gee EE-HYEM meh-reh)
It was a misunderstanding. 
Ọ́ bụ̀ ọ́ghóḿ. (AW boo AW-GOM)
Where are you taking me? 
Ké ébé í nè dúfūm? (KAY AY-BAY EE neh DOO-foom)
Am I under arrest? 
ị̀ nà tụ́ḿ ńkpọ́rọ́? (ee nah TOOM IN-POH-ROH)
I am an American/Australian/British/Canadian citizen. 
Á bụ̀m ónyé ḿbà Amirika/Osuterelia/Briten/Kanada. (AH boom OH-NYE MM-bah...)
I want to talk to the American/Australian/British/Canadian embassy/consulate. 
Á chọ̀m̀ ị́ hụ́ ńdú òché ḿbà Amerika/Osutralia/Britain/Kanada. (AH chore-m ee HUH IN-DIH oh-CHAY MM-bah...)
I want to talk to a lawyer. 
Á chọ̀m̀ ị́ hụ́ ónyé íkpè. (AH chore-m EE HUH OWN-YAY EEK-pay)
Can I just pay a fine now? 
M̀ nwèríkí kwụ́ ụ́gwọ́ ńrá ùgbúà? (mm we-REE-KEE K-WOO OO-GWOR NN-RAH oo-BU-wah)

Expressions and particles[edit]

Like many African languages Igbo is a very expressive language that makes use of a lot of exclamations in its daily use. Some of these are included:

-kwánụ́ (KWA-NOO
'though'
This is usually added to the end of a question to make something inclusive.
-ụ̀kwá (ooh-KWA
'as well'
similar to 'kwanu' but is added at the end of any sentence for the same effect.
èwó! (ay-WOAH
'oh no!'
An exclamation that can be made out of exhaustion, either from laughing at a joke or when work is done, realising a mistake, like leaving the lights in the house on all night, or any other terrible event.
Chínēkè! (CHEE-NAY-kay
'God!'
Chineke is 'God' and is a common expression use for the same purposes as 'Jesus' often does in English.
ó! (OH
'Okay, all right'
A exclamation that often means agreeing with something, although it can sometimes be used as sarcasm, a common situation where this is used is when someone is arrogant in their knowledge of something. It is often used on its own, but can be attached to another word, e.g 'Chim o!' meaning 'my spirit'.
héwù! (HEY-woo
'No!'
An expression used in a shocking tragic moment.
Ọ́ dị̀kwà égwù (AW dee-kwah EH-gwoo
'Impossible'
Sometimes used to show absolute rejection of something.
tụ̀fíàkwà (too-FEE-ya-kwa
'Disgusting!'
Extreme rejection or opposition of something, usually followed with clicking fingers over the head as to rid oneself of the thing in question. This is an often reaction to an abomination.
Chínēkè é kwélé ị́hyẹ́ ọ́jọ̄ (CHEE-NAY-kay EH KWEH-LEH EE-HEE-YEAH OH-JAW
'God will not allow a bad thing'
An exclamation made out of shock when a bad thing happens.

Learning more[edit]

This is a guide phrasebook. It covers all the major topics for traveling without resorting to English. But please Plunge forward and help us make it a star!

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