Mi'kmaq language/Counting

Chapter 6
Lesson : Mi'kmaq language
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Mi'kmaq language uses a decimal numeral system and uses the arab numbers as numeric symbols, the same way English do. Numbers take different endings depending if the things being counted are animate or inanimate (see Chapter 5 for more details). For 1 to 5, the endings are generally "-ijik" for animate and "-kl" for inanimate, while for 6 to 10, the word "te'sijik" is added for animate and the word "te'sɨkl" for inanimate (see the first table below).

Unless otherwise indicated, the numbers shown below are the roots without those endings. This chapter uses the Francis-Smith orthography (see Chapter 3 for more details).

Firstly, the roots for numbers 0 to 9 are shown in the table below. The complete forms for animate and inanimate are also included.

# Root Animate Inanimate
0 mu koqoey mu koqoey mu koqoey
1 ne'wt newte'jit newte'
2 ta'pu tapusijik tapu'kl
3 ne'sist ne'sijik ne'siskl
4 ne'w newijik newkl
5 na'n nanijik nankl
6 asukom asukom te'sijik asukom te'sɨkl
7 l'uiknek l'uiknek te'sijik l'uiknek te'sɨkl
8 ukmuljin ukmuljin te'sijik ukmuljin te'sɨkl
9 pesqunatek pesqunatek te'sijik pesqunatek te'sɨkl

For the tens, the ending "-iska'q" is added to the root from the table above for 10s to 50s while the word "te'siska'q" is added after the root from the table above for 60s to 90s as shown in the table below. Note that ten (10) is an exception where the word mtln is traditionnaly more used instead of newtiska'q, but both are correct.

# Mi'kmaq word
10 mtln or newtiska'q
20 tapuiska'q
30 nesiska'q
40 newiska'q
50 naniska'q
60 asukom te'iska'q
70 l'uiknek te'iska'q
80 ukmuljin te'iska'q
90 pesqunatek te'iska'q

For the numbers between the tens, the word "jel" and the root of the first table are added. The table below only shows 10 to 19, but the same can be applied for all other numbers up to 99. For example, 21 is "tapuiska'q jel ne'wt" and 62 is "asukom te'iska'q jel ta'pu".

# Mi'kmaq word
10 mtln or newtiska'q
11 newtiska'q jel ne'wt
12 newtiska'q jel ta'pu
13 newiska'q jel si'st
14 newtiska'q jel ne'w
15 newtiska'q jel na'n
16 newtiska'q jel asukom
17 newtiska'q jel l'uiknek
18 newtiska'q jel ukumuljin
19 newtiska'q jel pesqunatek

The word for hundred (100) is "kaskimtlnaqn". For number between 100 and 199, the words "te'iska'q jel" and the number are added after "kaskimtlnaqn". For example, 102 is "kaskimtlnaqn te'iska'q jel ta'pu". For the 200s to 900s, the number of the hundreds is added before the word "kaskimtlnaqn". For example, 200 is "ta'pu kaskimtlnaqn". The same rule is followed for number between hundreds up to 999. For example, 405 is "ne'w kaskimtlnaqn te'iska'q jel na'n".

The word for thousand (1000) is "pituimtlnaqn" and the one for ten thousand (10,000) is "pituimtlnaqnepikatun". The same rule apply for thousands and ten thousands than the above rule for hundreds. For example, 1001 is "pituimtlnaqn te'sika'q jel ne'wt" and 10,001 is "pituimtlnaqnepikatun te'sika'q jel ne'wt". Note that "mtln te's" is also used to 10,000.

The word for one million is "kji-pituimtlnaqn".

External resources