"Learn Navajo one word at a time"

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tah ah kwee jih

Today, we learn the word for everyday.

It’s used as it is in English.

You know how to say today (this day – díí jį́).

Carry the word for day and attach t’áá ákwíí, which is the word that means _every (every single). _

You’ll notice that ákwíí uses elements from the word denoting quantity (how much? – díkwíí).

So what does t’áá denote? Well, it’s one of those words that doesn’t quite have a precise English translation. This word will show up in a lot of different contexts.


it is hard, difficult

nah nh t-lth ah

Meaning: it is hard, as in difficult.

With today’s word, you simply use it to denote difficulty in a subject or action. Or, negate it like so:

Diné bizaad doo nantł’ah da. The Navajo language is not difficult.

Use the shił, nił and bił particles to create these phrases:

  • shił nantł’ah - it is difficult for me
  • nił nantł’ah - it is difficult for you
  • bił nantł’ah - it is difficult for him/her/it
  • Díí kool-aid shił nantł’ah yishdlą́. This kool-aid is difficult for me to drink.



yah eesh josh chill lih

It’s the beginning of the month of June! Being as such, today’s word is the Navajo name for June.

Technically speaking the meaning of ya’iishjááshchilí is little corn tassels. If you recall, the season for dá’ák’eh began a few weeks ago. Now, they should be showing tassels, but not big ones because they still have to grow.

Being that the area in and around the Navajo Nation is in its 19th year of drought conditions, it’s okay if your corn fields are a little late in getting started.



bee in da ah neh heh

Here’s a fun word for you: bii’nda’a’néhé refers to a gym, or more literally a place within which you play.

Take the first part of the word, bii’. This is the part of the word that means within, or inside.

Remember the word from a few days ago, daané’é. Notice that the rest of the word, nda’a’néhé is, more or less, a form of of daané’é. But in this case, it functions more as an adjective than a noun. Can you see the similarity?



uh jay dish jole

Here’s a body part word which means heart.

In this form, you can attach the shi-, ni-, and bi- particles to imply either my, your, or his/her/its heart, respectively. These words are as follows: shijéídíshjool, njéídíshjool, bijéídíshjool.

It is common in some medical settings for the word ajéí to also be used.