Dictionary

This dictionary does not follow a standard orthography nor reflect a specific dialect. This dictionary is a collection of words and short phrases from many different sources.

This dictionary is alphabetized according to the English alphabet and not in order of pronunciation (for example, some Wolof dictionaries place ‘x’ between ‘g’ and ‘i’ because it’s similar to the ‘h’ sound…in this dictionary ‘x’ goes where ‘x’ would normally go – between ‘w’ and ‘y’). Also, diacritics (accented letters) are alphabetized along with their non-diacritic counterparts, so in other words, é is collated in order as if it was just ‘e’…it does not have its own section. Following this system of alphabetization, prenasalized consonants, doubled consonants & doubled vowels (long vowels) are alphabetized in order of the first letter in the combination and do not get their own sections (mb = ‘m’, tt = ‘t’, oo = ‘o’, etc.) The velar nasalŋ, is treated as a normal ‘n’.

Tips

  • If you can’t find your word under b then try looking for it under p and vice versa. The same with c and j.
  • Words with prenasalized consonants (mb, mp, nd, ng, nj, etc.) may sometimes have non-nasalized forms so if you can’t find your word in order by the first letter then try looking for it by the second letter. The opposite may be true as well…words that start with letters that can be nasalized (such as b, d, g, j, p, etc.) may be found under m or n.
  • The letters h and x are basically the same when it comes to Wolof. Some orthographies prefer using h and others x, so if you can’t find your word with one spelling then try the other. Also some sources use kh to represent this sound.
  • Many words can be spelled many different ways so try alternate spellings if you are having trouble finding your word.
  • Some orthographies are based off of French pronunciations. In these orthographies t has a ch (usually written as just ‘c’) sound and d has a j sound, so as with the above tips try looking in the corresponding sections if you are having difficulty finding your word.
  • Use Ctrl + F on your computer keyboard to quickly find words. (Cmd + F on Macs)
  • Search the phrase dictionary for examples of usage.
  • If you are certain your word is not in the dictionary try asking for it in the comments area, I’ll either try to add it or a fellow commenter may reply with the definition. Alternately you can do a search from the search field in the left-side menu bar to see if the word is discussed in a previous blog post. Also try Firicat.com.
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35 responses to “Dictionary

  1. Pingback: Basic Wolof Phrases | Janga Wolof·

      • I had a rather hard time chinsoog just one type of physician I would want to work for. So many of them fascinate me, and with me not really going into any medical field other than support, I never gave this any thought in the past. After reading the list, I am more favorable of working for a neonatologist. It is difficult to think about how neonatologist physicians sometimes have the most difficult job in the world, but I can only imagine how amazing it would be to be a part of saving a baby’s life. I had a coworker once whose baby was born at 36 weeks, and her baby had a lot of heart and lung problems. There were concerns about whether or not they would ever fully develop once she had him, but after many months in the NICU, and many scares that happened during it, the doctors were able to save him and he is now a very healthy 5 year old. It is because of that I have a higher interest in the neonatologist field.I hate to say which type of physician I would care less to work for, and it is because I worry that many will take it the wrong way. When I was 16, I used to help my mom at an assisted living home as a caregiver. We would get to work at 7:00 A.M. every morning to prepare breakfast for four of the elderly men and women that we were caring for. We would then make sure that all bedding was changed, rooms were cleaned, meals were prepared, and appointments were handled. We worked 12 hour days, and they were always grueling. The owner of the home made sure that everyone had their medicine and made it to their doctor appointments on time. However, she was more worried about getting paid for her services than actually helping the elderly. She would yell at them if they did something wrong, and even call them terrible names. My mom reported her and we both quit our job, but it has always left a sting in my heart since then. It is because of my experience with that situation that I do not think I could ever work for a gerontologist. I know that the situations would be much different, but ever since my experience with caring for elderly individuals it is very hard for me to think about assisting a physician in geriatrics because I worry that someone else might treat the elderly in the same way the owner of the home did. I am a firm believer that the elderly deserve the ultimate care and comfort when going through any treatment and aging in general, but I do not think I could ever work in that environment again.

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  3. what does loi def yange mean? What does job be laagi mean? What does lolu bakhna mean? What does naka sa buss mean? What does naka chango nge mean? What does mange ni rek di sarta mean?

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