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Doctrina y enseñança en la lengva maçahva

Nágera Yanguas, Diego de

DomaineTraditions non-occidentales
SecteurGrammaires amérindiennes [4660]

Internet Archive (éd. 1637)


Nágera Yanguas, Diego de

Variantes: Naxera, Nájera

Datation: 1570-1635

Diego de Nágera Yanguas was born in Mexico at the beginning of the last quarter of the 16th century (Pellicer 2000, p. 17). Knapp (2013, p. 29) gives a more precise year for his birth: 1570. He studied Theology in Mexico at the Real Universidad y Pontificia where he became “licenciado”. It is documented that he also knew Nahuatl. In 1592 he became “cura párroco beneficiado” (secular clergyman) in Jocotitlán and later “examinador, sinodal y comisario del Santo Oficio de la Inquisición”.

Titre de l'ouvrageDoctrina y enseñança en la lengva maçahva de cosas mvy vtiles, y prouechosas para los Ministros de Doctrina, y para los naturales que hablan la lengua Maçahua
Titre traduitDoctrine and teaching of very useful and profitable matters in the Mazahua language to Ministers of Doctrine, and for the “naturales” who speak the Mazahua language
Titre courtDoctrina y enseñança en la lengva maçahva
Remarques sur le titreComplete title: Doctrina y enseñança en la lengva maçahva de cosas mvy vtiles, y prouechosas para los Ministros de Doctrina, y para los naturales que hablan la lengua Maçahua. Dirigido al illustrissimo señor Don Francisco Manso, y Çvniga, arçobispo de Mexico, del Consejo de su Magestad y de el Real de las Indias, por el licenciado Diego de Nagera Yangvas, Beneficiado del partido de Xocotitlan: comissario del santo Officio de la Inquisicion, y examinador en la dicha lengua maçahua. There has been some disagreement about this work. According to José Mariano Beristain there were two works, one entitled Manual para administrar los Santos Sacramentos en la lengua Mazahuatl and another, Doctrina e instrucción cristiana en Lengua Mazahua, útil y provechosa para los indios y para los párrocos. The confusion probably comes from the title mentioned in the first section of the text, written by Diego Guerra, who refers to the work as Manual, y instruccion de Administrar, and the same title appears in the “Aprobación” of the work written by Andrés de Ressa. In fact, it is one work (cf. Pellicer 2006, p. 15-16).
Période|17e s.|
Type de l'ouvrageShort grammatical description of Mazahua (“Advertencias”), text for confession, sacraments, liturgy, Mazahua and Spanish in double columns. The section entitled “advertencias” contains three parts, pronunciation, contrasting Mazahua with Spanish, parts of speech (noun, verb and adverb), and a lexical component (see for more details Pellicer 2006, p. 20). Woodcut arms of the dedicatee on A3 verso, decorative initials.
Type indexéGrammaire pour étrangers | Grammaire didactique | Texte religieux
Édition originale1637, Mexico, Juan Ruiz.
Édition utiliséeColl. John Carter Brown. Call number B637.N162d.
Volumétrie[5], 177, [2] leaves: ill.; 15 cm (in-8°). ca 24.000 characters, without spaces (only the grammatical section “advertencias”).
Nombre de signes24000
Reproduction moderneÉd. Valles Martínez, R. Facsimilar edition of the copy of the Biblioteca Mexicana de Obras Raras y Curiosas. Mexico: Talleres Offset Villar, 1952. Éd. Colín, M. 1970. Éd. Knapp, M. 2013.
DiffusionOnly 100 copies are printed of the edition of 1952.
Langues ciblesMazahua (Otomanguean, Oto-Pamean subgroup). Closest relatives: Otomí, Matlaltzinca, Ocuilteco/ Tlahuica. Autodenomination: Jñatjo
MétalangueSpanish, and sporadically Latin (as on f. 3v: actio transeat in alium)
Langue des exemplesMazahua
Sommaire de l'ouvrage[Licencia] Diego Guerra; Aprobacion (Andrés de Ressa); Al Illustrissimo señor Don Francisco Manso y Çvniuga (Zúñiga) (Nájera Yanguas); Al lector (Nájera Yanguas). Advertencias en lengva castellana mvy necessarias para hablar con propriedad la lengua que llaman maçahua (f. 1r-10v). There are no titles for any of the “advertencias”. There are 21 advertencias in total. The first ‘advertencia’ contains a general observation about the alphabet (f. 1r). In the second ‘advertencia’ Nájera Yanguas argues that nouns are not declined by cases and that verbs are not inflected according to ‘person’ (f. 1r). Advertencia 3: ‘Particles’ are used, called ‘articulas puestas à parte post’ as plural markers for nouns and verbs which are invariable (f. 1r-v). Advertencia 4: The particle me, not used for every tense and person, but only for the first person, when the person in question speaks for himself and for others at the same time (‘habla por sy, y por munchos’) (f. 1r-v); Advertencia 5: Regarding pronominal prefixes (in his terminology: ‘particulas que se ponen à parte ante del verbo’), some are only used for the present tense and others for the other tenses (f. 2v); Advertencia 6: Regarding possessive constructions (“particulas que muestran cuya es la cosa”) (f. 2v); Advertencia 7: Particulas que denotan tiempo preterito (f. 2v); Advertencia 8: Phonological changes for certain particles, combined with the adverb mamue (f. 2v-3r); Advertencia 9: Two adverbs with the meaning of “quando” (sin preguntar, and another “preguntando”) (f. 3r); Advertencia 10: Two verbs for “to go”, one for present tense,, the other for the other tenses (f. 3r-v); Advertencia 11 and 12: Two verbs for ‘decir’ (f. 3v-4r); Advertencia 13: “Verbo dual” (“ay modo de hablar para hablar à dos personas solamente”). The dual form is only used for verbs and not for nouns (f. 4v); Advertencia14: The verb ‘to give’ (f. 4v-5r); Advertencia 15: Futurus en -rus (f. 5r-6r); Advertencia 16: Negacion (f. 6r); Advertencia 17: Numerales (‘modo de contar’), also included in the confessionario) (f. 6r-8v); Advertencia 18: Particula (para preguntar) (f. 8v-pr); Advertencia 19: About the several translations of the Spanish word for ‘meat’ (carne). The Mazahuas classify meat only when it is meat of a birds, rabbits, mice, etc. whereas the meat of a cow is not classified as ‘meat’; Advertencia 20: Again, regarding numerals (f. 9v-10v); Advertencia 21: About the different pronunciation of the two graphemes /c/ and /ç/ “con serilla”, and more specifically, of /ch/ and /çh/. La confession en lengua castellana, y en lengua maçahua, ponese primero el vocablo en lengua castellana, y de esotra parte en derecho del, se ponen en maçahua. Several religious texts, dialogues, conversations (amonestaciones, comulgar, pláticas para la confesión, doctrina, bautismo, etc. (f. 10v-81r). El Cathecismo en lengva maçahva, y en lengua Castellana, por preguntas, y respuestas. P.R. (f. 81r-156v); Platica del santissimo sacramento (f. 105v-172r); Nombres de pueblos que ordinariamente se nombran (59 places in Mexico in Mazahua) (f. 172r-173r); Nombre de estancias de por aqui (f. 173v-174r); Nombres de Minas ordinarias (f. 174r); El per signvm Crucis, y las quatro Oraciones en la lengua Castellana, y Maçahua (f. 174r-176v); Tabla de las cosas contenidas en este Livro en lengua Castellana, y Maçahua (no numbered folios [f. 178r-179v]).
Objectif de l'auteurNájera Yanguas's aim was to compose a work for priests in order to enable them to preach, take confessions, and communicate with the speakers of Mazahua, without the intervention of interpreters (Nájera Yanguas, “Al Illustissimo Señor”, no page numbers). In most of the religious texts, and dialogues, topics relating to daily conversation are included. In some cases, the author observes explicitly that some expressions can also be used outside of religious contexts (“se puede acomodar en qualquiera de las platicas de este libro, y en otra qualquiera para los naturales”; f. 170r).
Intérêt généralThis is the only extant printed grammatical description of the Mazahua language which was completed during the colonial period. One of the main interests is the inclusion of a wealth of material related to daily speech of the Mazahua people. The author decided to write using a different type of language method, compared to average grammars of Nahuatl of the same period. He did not write a work entitled Arte or Gramática but the grammatical section comprises only the subtitle “Advertencias”. Instead, the words “Doctrina” and “Enseñanza” are used, indicating that he composed a mixture of grammar, texts for confession, liturgy and a method for learning to speak in daily situations. There are some comparable works, such as the Arte doctrinal for the instruction of the Matlatzinca language, written by the Augustinian Pedro de Guevara, but such texts are an exception. The author does not inform his readers of why he decided to do this, but comparable discussions are documented in other works, such as Quintana's description of Mixe (Instrucción christiana y guía de ignorantes para el Cielo, 1729), which includes sections devoted to grammar “Arte” and “modos de hablar”, embedded in a work entitled Instrucción christiana, whereas information related to pronunciation and phonology is included in another work, the Confessionario. As I have demonstrated, Quintana highlights that the main objective of writing his Confessonario was not ‘to teach morality’, but ‘to teach the Mixe language’ (Zwartjes 2014, p. 30). These examples demonstrate that missionaries in New Spain experimented with non-standard teaching methods, “breaking up” the traditional tripartite division between “Arte”, “Vocabulario” and “Doctrina”. Nágera Yanguas is one of the earliest innovators who started to experiment with these non-standard language tools. Pellicer introduced a neologism for a new genre, developed by Nágera Yanguas, the ‘conversacionario’, a method based on conversation (see Zwartjes 2016 about the dialogue in language instruction in New Spain). Mazahua has a complex phoneme inventory with 45 consonants (including ejectives, implosives and voiceless sonorants). It is obvious that such features remain almost invisible in the romanisation of Nájera Yanguas. His text hardly gives any information about phonology, and syntax is not described at all. The method is important seen from a pedagogical standpoint: The learner could read the examples aloud, or he could learn them by heart. The mise en page is made in such a way that phrases are divided into smaller segments so that the user can have more insights into the structure of Mazahua (Zwartjes 2014, p. 16-17).
Parties du discoursNo observations are included regarding the parts of speech system. Apart from the common terms, such as nouns, verbs and adverbs, the author analyses the use of certain particles. No separate sections are devoted to prepositions, adverbs, conjunctions and interjections and no traces of ‘extended terminology’ are found, which he could have adopted from other grammarians of languages spoken in regions surrounding that of the Mazahua people.
Innovations term.“Particula (puesta) à parte post” (f. 1r). “Particula (puesta) à parte ante” (f. 5r). “Verbo dual” (f. 4r).
Corpus illustratifMaçahua texts, dialogues for daily use, dialogues for confessions, word lists, etc.
Indications compl.
Influence subieNágera Yanguas refers to grammarians and lexicographers of other Mesoamerican languages, (Nahuatl, Otomi, P'urépecha and Matlatzinca) although he does not mention any author by name (Knapp 2013, p. 31). The work is modelled partially according to Arenas's Manual but this author is not mentioned either. There are no references to Old-World grammarians. The inclusion of a list of toponyms is not a very common practice, although there are earlier examples, such as the Mixtec grammar of Antonio de los Reyes (1593), which has several lists enumerating regions, such as “Mixteca baja”, “costa”, “pueblos de la parte de Teutila”, “the Zapotec region”, and finally the “Mexicano” region. However, Nájera Yanguas did not copy the list of Reyes, but made his own list.
Influence exercéeUnknown.
Renvois bibliographiques→ Références
Basalenque D. 1673; Basalenque D. 1714; Colín M. (éd.) 1970; Guevara M. de 1862; Iracheta Cenecorta M. del Pilar 2000; Knapp M. (éd.) 2013; Navarrete N. P. (éd.) 1970; Pellicer D. 2006; Reyes A. de los 1593; Valles Martínez R. (éd.) 1953; Zwartjes O. 2014; Zwartjes O., Zimmerman K. & Schrader-Kniffki M. (éd.) 2014

Zwartjes, Otto

Création ou mise à jour2017-05