Language quiz

Here’s part of a song in a mystery language.

Can you guess the language and where it’s spoken?

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This entry was posted in Language, Quiz questions.

9 Responses to Language quiz

  1. michael farris says:

    Sounds Quechuan for sure, not sure which variety though (or if you count Quechua as a language or language family).

  2. Jasmine says:

    Interesting. I don’t know much about languages at all, I wish I had the ear some of the commenters here have! I think it sounds native american but I’m in europe so what would i know!

  3. fiosachd says:

    It’s definitely Quechua – it’s a song about preserving and passing on Incan values, traditions, and language.

  4. fiosachd says:

    Perhaps Quechua II C – either Chanka or Qusqu-Qullaw – one of the major southern dialects.

  5. Christopher Miller says:

    I thought it sounded like it could be Quechua from the vowels and the particular combination of consonants I heard, and I guess it’s pretty much confirmed by fiosachd. (By the way, is that a charango in the background?)

  6. prase says:

    Interesting, I thought it is almost certainly a Chinese dialect.

  7. Rauli says:

    I thought it sounded like some Chinese dialect as well, or perhaps Ainu. But now that almost all the others say it’s Quechua, I’ll just have to take their word for it. Actually, I just thought I heard the words “Runa Simi” in the song.

  8. bronz says:

    At first I also ruminated towards some sort of obscure Southeast Asian tonal language (in part because of the melody and voice quality), but some consonants and consonant clusters don’t jive with that direction. I would have guessed some indigenous American language, but don’t know enough to intelligibly guess which. What a beautiful, beautiful song.

  9. Simon says:

    The answer is Quechua (Qhichwa), which is spoken in Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and Argentina. I’m not sure what variety of Quechua it is though.

    The recording comes from Cultures of the Andes / Culturas de los Andes.

    The song is called Intiq Churin and here are the lyrics for the verse in the recording:

    Ñoqan kani Intiq Churin, taytallaysi kachamuwan
    Ñoqan kani Intiq wawan, taytallaysi kamachiwan
    Ah ah ah
    Taytallaysi kachamuwan, runaykunata maskamuy nispa
    Ah ah ah
    Taytallaysi kamachiwan, runasimita yachachiy nispa