The Finongan Alphabet

The letters of the Finongan alphabet are: 

a b c d e f g h i k l m n o p s t u w y

The Finongan-to-English part of the dictionary is arranged alphabetically according to the above order.

Listed below are the symbols which do not occur in Tok Pisin and their values:

  1. aa, ee, ii, oo, and uu represent lengthened vowels.
  2. c represents a glottal stop, pronounced like the sound in the middle of the English word uh-oh.
  3. h represents a voiced uvular fricative. This is similar to the r in the French word rue ‘road.’

The other Finongan alphabetic letters are generally the same as those corresponding in Tok Pisin. See the chart below for the sounds that occur in the language along with their equivalent Tok Pisin pronunciation.

Finongan

Tok Pisin

Tok Pisin ex. pronunciation

a

=

a

as in

abus

b

=

b

as in

bel

d

=

d

as in

dok

e

=

e

as in

em

f

=

f

as in

faiv

g

=

g

as in

gaden

i

=

i

as in

insait, pikinini

k

=

k

as in

kamap

l

=

l

as in

lewa

m

=

m

as in

mambu

n

=

n

as in

nait

ng

=

ng

as in

long

ngg

=

ng

as in

pinga

o

=

o

as in

opim, ofa

p

=

p

as in

pait

s

=

s

as in

sarip

t

=

t

as in

taim

u

=

u

as in

susu

w

=

w

as in

wantok

y

=

y

as in

yumi

When a suffix beginning with a consonant is added to a word ending with the same consonant, both consonants are written, but only one is pronounced. This occurs mostly with the letters k, n and t. For example fat-t-ak is written fattak ‘he is’ and kuyak-ka is written kuyakka ‘your brother’. This has been the preferred spelling since the beginning of the language project.