Wangkangurru has many ways of greeting people. A common way to greet someone might be to say Arru!, this means hello, you could also say Mayi which also means hello or hi.
A few other handy words to know as we begin learning are:
Questions and Answers
When getting to know someone new, you might like to ask unpa ngurku? Unpa means you and ngurku means good.
You might also respond with antha ngulpa. Antha means I and ngulpa means sick.
You might ask a few different questions about who people are and where they’re from.
A common question might be Wara unpa? Wara means who and unpa means you.
You might also ask Minha unpa pidla?. Minha means what, unpa means you and pidla means name.
A response to this could be Antha pidla Anpanuwa-nha. Antha means I, pidla means name and -nha or -anha is added after your name to show that it is a name.
To find out where someone is from you could ask Thiyara-nganha unpa? Thiyara means where, -nganha means from and unpa means you.
An answer to this might be Antha Wirarri-nganha. Antha means I, Wirarri is the Wangkangurru name for Birdsville and -nganha means originally from.
Here are some other places that you might be from
You might also respond to the question ‘where are you from?’ by saying that you are a Wangkangurru woman or man. Antha means I, ulyurla means woman, and yuwu means man.
Feelings and Actions
Being able to describe some feelings and what you might want is handy when learning conversation in Wangkangurru.
Someone might ask you Minha unpa wayarnda? Minha means what, unpa means you and wayarnda means want.
You might reply to this question with Antha kudnala wayarnda. Antha means I, kudnala means sleep and wayarnda means want.
You might also answer Antha wadlhara. Antha means I and wadlhara means hungry.
If you would like to ask for water you might say, Antha kutha wayarnda. Antha means I, kutha means water and wayarnda means want.
Another question you can ask someone is What do you want to eat?, Minha unpa tharnilhuku wayarnda? Minha means what, unpa means you, tharnilhuku means to eat and wayarnda means want.
A response to this might be Antha tharnilhuku kathi wayarnda I want to eat meat. Antha means I, tharnilhuku means to eat, kathi means meat and wayarnda means want.
You might also want to eat some damper. For this you would say Antha tharnilhuku murru wayarnda. Antha means I, tharnilhuku means to eat, murru means damper/tucker and wayarnda means want.
You may want to ask someone Unpa thiyara-ruku yukarnda? Unpa means you, thiyara means where, -ruku means to and yukarnda means going.
You might respond to this by saying Antha ngura-ruku yukarnda. Antha means I, ngura means home/camp, -ruku means to and yukarnda means going.
If you’re returning home you might say Antha ngura-ruku thikarnda. Antha means I, ngura means home/camp, -ruku means to and thikarnda means returning.
Another common response might be Antha kudna-warli-ruku yukarnda. Antha means I, kudna-warli is a word for toilet, the ending -ruku means to and yukarnda means going.
You might like to talk about your experiences learning Wangkangurru language.
First, let’s proudly announce that we’re speaking Wangkangurru! Antha means I, and yanhirnda means talking.
Here are some other sentences related to language learning. Remember that yanhirnda means speaking. Wangka means word or language and yata means again.
As you finish up a conversation you might say Wanga-wanga nhanhinha! which means See (you) tomorrow. Wanga-wanga means tomorrow, and nhanhinha means will see.