Confessing Affections With Turoyo

With the Meebo chat that I've implemented both here and at the Aramaic Designs webpage along with publicizing my email address, I've had my brain picked about a large number of fascinating things.

That said, I must admit what happened last week truly warmed my heart. :-)

A young woman, whom we will call "Ash" came by and shared the following with me:

My friend and I were having a great conversation and then he said "ko rohamnolakh" but would not translate. I have no clue as to what it means.

"Ko rohamnolakh" a very distinct grammatical pattern with unmistakable vowels. Her friend was a speaker of Turoyo, a rather unique dialect of Neo-Aramaic that is spoken by some 150,000-200,000 individuals worldwide.

It is an Aramaic language that retains a large number of older features (such a vocabulary and phonetics), while at the same time has become crafty by re-inventing some features that have disappeared from earlier dialects of Aramaic altogether (such as a true definite article).

Although I'm currently studying Turoyo, I don't speak very much of it; however, my knowledge of other Aramaic dialects, plus a grasp on Turoyo's grammar made it easy to twig onto what Ash's friend was trying to express.

The situation was rather sweet:

"Ko-rohamno lekh" is how a man says "I love you" to a woman in Turoyo.

So I immediately emailed her back, explaining my suspicions. At the same time, I gave her the following phrases so that she could pursue this linguistic exchange further. :-)


Hi, I'm Steve Caruso and I'm the translator at Aramaic Designs. :-)

Just to re-iterate I believe "ko-rokhamno lakh" is "I love you" in Turoyo Neo-Aramaic.

Since we don't offer Neo-Aramaic dialects commercially (as the variance between them is rather extreme in some cases, making it difficult sometimes to pin down the exact nuances necessary) I've decided to give you a few phrases in Turoyo to help you out with this individual as a gift. :-) These are general enough responses that they should be understandable to any Turoyo speaker.

K-udh'ono. - I know.

Ko-fuhmono. - I understand.

Ko-rukhmono lokh ste. - I love you, too.

Kibokh tonat-la? - Could you say that again?


In either case good luck!


Not long thereafter, I received the following reply. :-)

That's awesome! :) Thanks so much for your help Steve!

I was able to use what you told me and it helped out lots! Haha, when I told him he was shocked and got a little embarrassed it was so cute! :) But now he is so shy! lol


Thanks again!

And a mere two hours later, I received this:

Hey Steve,

My friend tells me to tell you,....

towdy ghalaby aly targamy

Take Care

"Towdy ghalaby ali targamy" : "Many thanks for the translations." :-)

They say that French is the language of love...

Now, I beg to differ. :-)


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