Outline of the language

  • Bundjalung has 4 vowels: i, a, u and e each of which can also be pronounced as a longer vowel. There are 10 consonants: b, d, dj, g, m, n, ng, ny, l, r, w and y.
  • Nouns take many different suffixes (tag endings) to mark such roles as subject, object, instrument, location, movement towards, possession and to make feminine from masculine nouns. Nouns can also show singular and plural in three classes: masculine, feminine, and neuter or tree nouns.
  • Verbs have 4 tenses: future, present, and two pasts; various suffixes also show that someone ‘keeps on’ doing something, or that people are doing something ‘to each other’ .
  • Word order is fairly free, although there is a tendency toward Subject – Object – Verb word order.