Paj-Puj: The Noun-to-Noun Derivation Suffix <span style="font-family:sans-serif;" >چە</span>

The Noun-to-Noun Derivation Suffix چە

ئىسىمدىن ئىسىم ياسايدىغان «چە» ئارقا قوشۇمچىسى

Adding the suffix چە to an ethnicity results in a word denoting the language of the ethnic group.

Uyghur + [language] = (in) the Uyghur language
ئۇيغۇر + چە = ئۇيغۇرچە

Han + [language] = (in) Mandarin
خەنزۇ + چە = خەنزۇچە

These words may function as both nouns (e.g., "the Uyghur language") and as adverbs (e.g., "in the Uyghur language"). The following are examples of the former:

Mandarin, English, and Arabic are all examples of the world's most widely spoken languages.
.خەنزۇچىمۇ، ئىنگلىزچىمۇ، ئەرەبچىمۇ دۇنيادا ئەڭ كۆپ نوپۇس ئىشلىتىدىغان تىللار

Over four years of study, Miriam has learned Uyghur very well.
.مەريەم تۆت يىل ئوقۇش داۋامىدا ئۇيغۇرچىنى بەك ياخشى ئۆگىنىپتۇ
.مەريەم تۆت يىل ئوقۇش جاريانىدا ئۇيغۇرچىنى بەك ياخشى ئۆگىنىپتۇ

Find yourself an Uyghur girlfriend and you'll never have problems with Uyghur again!
!سەن ئۇيغۇر قىزلاردىن دوست تېپىۋالدىڭمۇ بولدى، ئۇيغۇرچە ئۆگىنىشىڭدە گەپ يوق

Alternatively, the suffix چە may be added to certain objects to indicate a diminutive (smaller, "cuter") version of that object.

book + [diminutive] = booklet
كىتاب + چە = كىتابچە

park + [diminutive] = small park, garden
باغ + چە = باغچە

particle + [diminutive] = subatomic particle
زەررە + چە = زەررىچە

ball + [diminutive] = small ball
شار + چە = شارچە

Will we also still go to the park even if it rains?
يامغۇر ياغسىمۇ، بىزمۇ باغچىغا بېرىۋېرىمىزمۇ؟

The standard vowel-reduction rules apply when adding this suffix - i.e., if the word ends in an ئا or ئە vowel, this reduces to an ئى (provided that it is not a long vowel). For this reason, we have the reduction in the word زەررىچە, but not in the word خەنزۇچە.

See also: 4.3.2, 4.6.1, 4.8.1, 4.9.1


  1. Personal research/experience
  2. Tarjei Engesæth, Mahire Yakup, Arienne M. Dwyer, "Greetings from the Teklimakan: a handbook of Modern Uyghur". University of Kansas: Kansas, 2009. (p. 138)
  3. Hamit A. Zakir, "Introduction to Modern Uighur". Xinjiang University Press: Urumqi, 2007. (p. 133)
  4. Frederick De Jong, "A Grammar of Modern Uyghur". Houtsma Stichting: Utrecht, 2007. (p. 22)
  5. Hämit Tömür, "Modern Uyghur Grammar" (translation by Anne Lee). Yıldız: Istanbul, 2003. (p. 90)
  6. Reinhard F. Hahn, Ablahat Ibrahim, "Spoken Uyghur". University of Washington Press: Seattle, 1991. (p. 159)
  7. E. N. Nadzhip, "Modern Uigur". Nauka Publishing House: Moscow, 1971. (p. 37, 134, 137)
  8. 易坤琇, "维吾尔语语法"。中央民族大学出版社: 北京, 1998。 (p. 55)
  9. А. Кайдаров, "Краткий грамматический очерк уйгурского языка". 1966. (p. 16)
  10. G. Raquette, "Eastern Turki Grammar: Practical and Theoretical with Vocabulary". Reichsdruckerei: Berlin, 1912. (p. 175)