Counting in Isthmus Zapotec
Isthmus Zapotec (diidxazá) is a Zapotecan language from the Oto-Manguean languages family spoken in Tehuantepec and Juchitán de Zaragoza, in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, by about 85,000 speakers.
Due to lack of data, we can only count accurately up to 9,999 in Isthmus Zapotec. Please contact me if you can help me counting up from that limit.
Isthmus Zapotec numbers list
- 1 – tobi
- 2 – chupa
- 3 – chonna
- 4 – tapa
- 5 – gaayu’
- 6 – xhoopa’
- 7 – gadxe
- 8 – xhono
- 9 – ga’
- 10 – chii
- 11 – chii ne tobi
- 12 – chii ne chupa
- 13 – chii ne chonna
- 14 – chii ne tapa
- 15 – chii ne gaayu’
- 16 – chii ne xhoopa’
- 17 – chii ne gadxe
- 18 – chii ne xhono
- 19 – chii ne ga’
- 20 – gande
- 30 – gande chii
- 40 – chupa late gande
- 50 – chupa late gande chii
- 60 – chonna late gande
- 70 – chonna late gande chii
- 80 – tapa late gande
- 90 – tapa late gande chii
- 100 – ti gayuaa
- 1,000 – ti mil
Isthmus Zapotec numbering rules
Now that you’ve had a gist of the most useful numbers, let’s move to the writing rules for the tens, the compound numbers, and why not the hundreds, the thousands and beyond (if possible).
- Digits from one to nine are specific words: tobi , chupa , chonna , tapa , gaayu’ , xhoopa’ , gadxe , xhono , and ga’ .
- Isthmus Zapotec uses the vigesimal system, hence the tens are formed on the words for ten and twenty, namely: chii , gande , gande chii  (20+10), chupa late gande  (2*20), chupa late gande chii  (2*20 + 10), chonna late gande  (3*20), chonna late gande chii  (3*20 + 10), tapa late gande  (4*20), and tapa late gande chii  (4*20 + 10).
- When composed with a digit, numbers from eleven to ninety-nine are formed by saying the ten, then the word ne (and), and the digit (e.g.: gande ne gaayu’ , chupa late gande chii ne gadxe ).
- Hundreds are formed by saying the multiplier digit before the word for hundred (gayuaa): ti gayuaa  (note the use of another form of the digit one, tobi), chupa gayuaa , chonna gayuaa … We can note here again the vigesimal system in use: as gayuaa is formed on gaayu’ (five), it can be read as the contraction of five times twenty.
- The word for thousand is borrowed from Spanish (mil). Thousands are formed the same way as hundreds: ti mil [1,000], chupa mil [2,000], chonna mil [3,000]… The conjunction ne is set when the unit directly follows the thousand (e.g.: chupa mil ne tapa [2,004]).
Write a number in full in Isthmus Zapotec
Let’s move now to the practice of the numbering rules in Isthmus Zapotec. Will you guess how to write a number in full? Enter a number and try to write it down in your head, or maybe on a piece of paper, before displaying the result.
Zapotec-English/English-Zapotec (Isthmus) Concise Dictionary
by A. Scott Britton, editors Hippocrene Books (2003)
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Guendaguti ñee sisi / La Muerte de pies ligeros (edición bilingüe zapoteco - español)
by Toledo Natalia, editors Fondo de Cultura Económica (2005)
Diccionario Zapoteco de San Lucas Quiaviní (Vols. 1 y 2)
editors UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center Publications (1999)
- Gramática popular del zapoteco del Istmo, by Velma B. Pickett, Cheryl Black, and Vicente Marcial Cerqueda (.pdf in Spanish)
Other supported languages
As the other currently supported languages are too numerous to list extensively here, please select a language from the full list of supported languages.