27 August 2010

NYUNGAR Words: gurd: Have a heart

The word for ‘heart’ is ‘gurd’.

"gurt" gurd = "heart" heart: [9] Moore 1884 [:285:52] [NYUNGAR]

"koort" gurd = "heart, the" heart: [4 (b)] Grey [:286:7] [Minang]

"Gurdu" gurdu = "The heart" heart: Moore 1842 [:45:12] []

"goor-doo" gurdu = "heart, the; desire" heart: [4] Grey 1840 [:286:9] [NYUNGAR]

By extension, ‘gurd’ is also used for someone loved:

"kord" gurd = "wife or husband" spouse: [14 (b) (cc)] Bates [: 442:2] [Barlardung]

"körd" gurd = "wife or husband" spouse: Bates Grammar [:77:72] [Balardung]

"Gurdar" gurda = "A pair; a couple." pair: Moore 1842 [:45:10] [NYUNGAR]

"korda" gurda = "wife or husband" spouse: Bates Grammar [:77:45] [Wajuk]

"koor-da" gurda = "married person" spouse: [19] Isaacs 1949 [:320:48] [NYUNGAR]

"cordung" gurdang = "husband" husband: [24] Hassell, Edney [:293:44] [NYUNGAR]

"koordunger" gurdangir = "husband; lover" husband: [23] Buller-Murphy [:293:49] [Dordenup [Wardandi]]

With the possessive suffix ‘-ag’ to yield ‘heart-of’, the meaning is ‘anxious for’, desirous of’, ‘wanting’:

"Gurdak" gurdag = "Anxious, for any thing" want: Moore 1842 [:121:2] [NYUNGAR]

The words for ‘good’, ‘bad’, ‘having’ and ‘lacking’ are often combined with ‘gurd’. These words are:


"quaup" gwab = "good" good: [2] Nind 1831 [:274:10] [NYUNGAR]

"guaba" gwaba = "good thing" good: [8 (E)] Salvado [:274:32] [Balardung]

"Gwab-ba" gwaba = "good" good: Symmons, Charles [:11:17] [NYUNGAR]

"Gwâba" gwaba = "good" good: Bates Grammar [:67:36] [Kaniyang / Wajuk / Wardandi]

Some of the several words for ‘bad’ follow. The subtleties of these have not so far been clarified:


"wau-kyn" wagan = "bad; useless; no good" bad: [4 (b)] Grey [:208:32] [Minang]

"wockun" wagan = "bad, (unfit to eat)" bad: [2] Nind 1831 [:208:34] [NYUNGAR]

"war-ra" wara = "horrible (?)" bad: [24] Hassell, Edney [:173:40] [NYUNGAR]

"worra" wara = "bad" bad: [13] Rae [:208:2] [NYUNGAR]

"war-ra" wara = "bad" bad: [4] Grey 1840 [:208:26] [NYUNGAR]

"Djul" dyul = "Bad" bad: Symmons, Charles [:10:7] [NYUNGAR]

"Djul" dyul = "Bad." bad: Moore 1842 [:31:15] [NYUNGAR]


"cuttuck" gadag = "have" having: [24] Hassell, Edney [:283:11] [NYUNGAR]

"Ga-dak" gadag = "Having (possessing)" having: Moore 1842 [:138:27] [NYUNGAR]


"bart" bad = "nothing, no" lacking: Bates Grammar [:79:27] [NYUNGAR]

"Bârt" bad = "Not" lacking: Symmons, Charles [:23:30] [NYUNGAR]

"but" bad = "no; none" lacking: [8 (E)] Salvado [:335:41] [Balardung]


Combining these words with ‘gurd’ yields a variety of often abstract concepts:

"cood cuttuck quab" gud gadag gwab = "fond" heart-having good: [24] Hassell, Edney [:35:1] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart good’

"Gurdugwabba" gurdu gwaba = "Compound of Gurdu, the heart, and Gwabba, good; pleased." pleased: Moore 1842 [:46:1] [NYUNGAR]

"gürt gwâb öbin" gurd gwababin = "merry, heart “having good”" heart good becoming: Bates Grammar [:67:26] [Pinjarup]

‘heart bad’:

"koord wackine" gurd wagan = "sad ..." sad: [23] Buller-Murphy [:366:1] [Dordenup [Wardandi]]

"coord wackign" gurd wagan = "sad" sad: [24] Hassell, Edney [:365:47] [NYUNGAR]

"koord-warra" gurd wara = "sorrow; sorry ..." sorry: [23] Buller-Murphy [:387:4] [Dordenup [Wardandi]]

‘angry’, ‘disappointed’

"Gurdu djul" gurdu dyul = "Disappointed" heart bad: Moore 1842 [:129:22] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart-having’: ‘lover’, ‘marriage’:

"gurtgadàk" gurd gadag = "lover" heart-having: [9] Moore 1884 [:316:20] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart-lacking’: distress

"cotoropatpatan" guduru badbadan = "distress, to; to worry; agitate" heart-lacking: [8 (N)] Salvado [:255:23] [Balardung]

Australian indigenous languages are often thought to be deficient in abstract concepts. The rich variety of ideas deriving from ‘gurd’ suggests that perhaps there is no dearth of such abstracts but rather the difficulty in seeking and accurately obtaining them. How much easier it is to use sign language to seek the word for ‘ear’ than for ‘earnest’, for ‘leg’ than for ‘legendary’, for ‘toe’ than for ‘tone’.

Here are some examples:

heart one come’

"Gurdugyn-yul" gurdu gan yul = "Compound of Gurdu, the heart; Gyn, one; and Yul, to come; agreeing with; of one heart or mind; unanimous." agreeing with: Moore 1842 [:46:2] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart liver good’

"kootamiara quab" guda miyara qwab = "health; healthy; well" heart liver good: [23] Buller-Murphy [:285:36] [Dordenup [Wardandi]]

"goort-an-gur" gurdanGur = "howl with fear, to" shriek: [4 (b)] Grey [:292:30] [Minang]

heart press’ [?]

"goort-boom-gur" gurd bumgur = "embrace, to; to press to the heart" embrace: [4 (b)] Grey [:263:35] [Minang]

‘heart twisted’

"goort-daluk" gurd dalag = "sorry, to be; not to have friendly feeling" heart twisted: [4] Grey 1840 [:387:6] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart one come’

"Gurdo-gyn-yul" gurdu gan yul = "Agreeing with" agreeing with: Moore 1842 [:120:8.1] [NYUNGAR]

"Gurdugyn-yul" gurdu gan yul = "Compound of Gurdu, the heart; Gyn, one; and Yul, to come; agreeing with; of one heart or mind; unanimous." agreeing with: Moore 1842 [:46:2] [NYUNGAR]

‘heart agent’

"Gurdumit" gurdu mid = "Compound of Gurdu; the heart, and middi, the agent; the soul." spirit: Moore 1842 [:46:3] [NYUNGAR]

And a complete sentence:

‘I / vegetarian-of / heart hurt stand-ing’

"Ngadjo marynak gurdu bakkanyugowin" ngadyu maranag gurdu bagan yugawuin = "To want ... I want flour or food." I want food: Moore 1842 [:45:13.1] [NYUNGAR]

Finally, to rejoice at this richness in the language:

‘every heart good’

"yennar koota quab" yina guda gwab = "rejoice" rejoice: [23] Buller-Murphy [:360:22] [Dordenup [Wardandi]]

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