Nóomba

Numbers in Navajo up to 10

Background

Today we’ll start exploring the numbers in Navajo from 1 to 10.

Many cultures have certain numbers with greater significance, and in the Navajo culture that number is four. This is reflected in the four directions, the four sacred mountains, the four clans created by Changing Woman, and more. Traditional songs have stanzas that repeat four times, and ceremonies can last four days.

Another cultural idea is that human beings are known by their five fingers. Bila’ashdla’adi – a way of saying five-fingered (bi – “its”; ashdla’ – “five”; -di – “at”) – in combination with other characteristics, is a common name from the creation stories told during winter.

The Numbers

Recall that when asking a question involving numbers or quantities a special Navajo word is used (díkwíí). A simple response may be: “T’áá díkwíí” which means “(they are) just a few.”

A more precise answer will involve these base Navajo digits:

  • 1 – T’ááłá’í
  • 2 – Naakí
  • 3 – Táá’
  • 4 – Dį́į́’
  • 5 – Áshdla’
  • 6 – Hast’ą́ą́
  • 7 – Ts’ost’id
  • 8 – Tseebíí
  • 9 – Náhást’éí
  • 10 – Neeznáá