3 Suvit?

Dialogue: What are you doing?

Inuapik:
Suvit?ᓱᕕᑦ? What are you doing?
Jaaki:
Maanna?ᒫᓐᓇ? Right now?
Inuapik:
ii, maanna.ᐄ, ᒫᓐᓇ? Yes, now.
Jaaki:
Uqalimaaqtunga. Ivvilli?ᐅᖃᓕᒫᖅᑐᖓ. ᐃᕝᕕᓪᓕ? I am reading. What about you?
Inuapik:
Miqsuqtunga. Unnusa suniaqqilli?ᒥᖅᓱᖅᑐᖓ. ᐅᓐᓄᓴ ᓱᓂᐊᖅᑭᓪᓕ? I am sewing. And, what will you be doing this afternoon?
Jaaki:
Iqalliarniaqtunga.ᐃᖃᓪᓕᐊᕐᓂᐊᖅᑐᖓ. I will be going fishing.
Inuapik:
Asu. Qauppalli, sulaaqqit?ᐊᓱ. ᖃᐅᑉᐸᓪᓕ, ᓱᓛᖅᑭᑦ?I see. What will you be doing tomorrow?
Jaaki:
Umiaqtulaaqtunga.ᐅᒥᐊᖅᑐᓛᖅᑐᖓ. I will be going boating.
Inuapik:
Aahali.ᐋᕼᐊᓕ. Okay, then.

Vocabulary

unnusa
afternoon
niqtiuqtuq
cooks (he/she...)
unnuk
evening
iqalliaqtuq
fishing (she goes...)
ilinniaqtuq
learns (he/she...)
katimajut
meeting (they are...)
ullaaq
morning
unnuaq
night
maanna
now
uqalimaaqtuq
reads (he/she...)
miqsuqtuq
sews (he/she...)
niuviriaqtuq
shopping (she goes...)
ullumi
today
qauppat
tomorrow
suvit?
What are you doing?
sulauqqit?
What did you do?
Qauppat sulaaqqa?
What is she doing tomorrow?
sulaaqqit?
What will you be doing (later today)?
iqqanaijaqtuq
works (he/she...)
ippatsaq
yesterday
umiaqtuqtuq
boating (he/she goes...)

Grammar

6 » Future Tense

The Qikiqtaaluk (Baffin) dialects of Inuktut are fairly precise in how they deal with tenses. Affixes are added to verbs that indicate that an event will happen in the immediate future, later the same day or farther in the future.

The Immediate Future

To talk about event that will happen later the same day, isert the affix -niaq- between the verb and the subject ending:

suvit? suniaqqit?
What are you doing? What will you be doing?
   
nirijunga niriniaqtunga
I am eating. I will be eating.

When -niaq- is added to a root that ends in -q, the q changes to r.

kaapituq + niaq + tunga = kaapiturniaqtunga.
  I will be drinking coffee.
When -niaq- is added to a root ending in -k or -k  it changes the final k or  to n.
pisuk/pisut + niaq + tuq = pisunniaqtuq
  He/she is going to walk.

 

In Iqaluit, -langa- is the affix that is most commonly used for an event in the immediate future.  -langa- can be attached directly to a root that ends in a vowel.  When attached to a root ending in a consonant, it deletes the final consonant:
ullumi aullalangajuq He/she is going to depart today.

 

Events farther in the Future

-laaq- is an affix used for events that will be happening the next day or further into the future.

 

iqqanaijarniaqtunga iqqanaijalaaqtunga

I am going to work (later that day).

I will be working (sometime in the future).
 
takuniaqpugut takulaarivugut
See you soon! See you later/ See you then!
If -laaq- is added to a stem that ends in a consonant, it deletes the last consonant.
aullaq + laaq + tuq = aullalaaqtuq
  He will leave town.
 

7 » Past Tense

-rataaq- is an affix that is used to describe actions that have happened in the immediate past (within the hour).

 isirataaqtuq
She just came in.
 
tikirataaqtugut
We just arrived.

-qqau- is an affix that is used to describe actions that have happened earlier in the day.

uqaalaqqaujuq
He called earlier.
 
angirraqqaujunga
I went home (earlier that day).

 

-lauq- is used to describe actions that have happened yesterday or in the not too distant past.

ippatsaq tuttulialauqtuq
Yesterday, he went caribou hunting.
 
taqqiulauqtumi qikalauqtuq
Last month she went on holidays.

Note that when any of the above affixes are added to a root ending in a consonant, they delete the final consonant.

aullaq + rataaq + tuq = aullarataaqtuq
  She just left (departed) a few minutes ago.
   
tikit + qqau + juq = tikiqqaujuq
  He arrived earlier.
   
malik + lauq + tut = malilauqtut
  They followed (yesterday or earlier).
 
Important: Inuktitut speakers don't always use these affixes to talk about events in the past. At times you have to rely on context of the conversation to know whether a verb like "nirijuq" refers to an event right now or in the past.

Verbs involving motion often refer to an event in the past when they are combined with basic subject endings (-junga/-tunga, -jutit/-tutit, -juq/-tuq, etc.) :

tikippit? tikippunga
Did you arrive/make it here OK? I arrived/made it here OK.