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  • Writer's pictureSpeak Your Roots

"Koh” "Chchaw" Maram

In the Maram dialect, the affixes "Koh" instead of "Bah" and "Chchaw" instead of Kong are used. "Koh Ja"- my mother tells me that this particular nickname is given to someone notorious. The name is in close reference to a "Koh Ja", an infamous man who lived much before her time of whom villagers apparently suspected of being a "menshohnoh". So when boys misbehave, they say "en nan koh Ja" or "he resembles Koh Ja".

"Chchaw Bih"/ "Kong Bih"/ "Bih Bih"/ "Ka Bih"- I've always found this nickname intriguing as "Bih" in Khasi also means poison. Additionally we even have "Bihrit", "Bihheh", "Bihdeng" if there are many female siblings. "Chchaw Mem" is also another intriguing nickname. My mother says that this is particularly used for the fair skinned girl child (considering that they call a white woman a Mem/ Ma'am).

The Maram dialect is spoken in the West Khasi Hills District of Meghalaya. The variety of dialects spoken enriches a language giving it depth and scope. 🗣️🗣️
Thank you @laia.naomi for this contribution! 🤗🤗

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