Tilquiapan Zapotec

Last updated
Tilquiapan Zapotec
San Miguel Tilquiápam
Region Oaxaca in Mexico
Native speakers
5,000 (2007) [1]
Latin script
Language codes
ISO 639-3 zts
Glottolog tilq1235

Tilquiapan Zapotec (Zapoteco de San Miguel Tilquiápam) is an Oto-Manguean language of the Zapotecan branch, spoken in southern Oaxaca, Mexico.


Santa Inés Yatzechi Zapotec is close enough to be considered a dialect, and Ocotlán Zapotec is also close. They were measured at 87% and 59% intelligibility, respectively, in recorded text testing. [2]



Vowel phonemes of Tilquiapan Zapotec [3]
Front Central Back
Close i ɨ u
Mid ɘ o
Open a

Each vowel can also be glottalized, a phenomenon manifested as either creaky voice throughout the vowel or, more commonly, as a sequence of a vowel and a glottal stop optionally followed by an echo of the vowel. [4]


Consonant phonemes of Tilquiapan Zapotec [5]
Bilabial Dental/
Palatal Velar
plain labialized
Nasal mn
Plosive bdtːʃɡkːʷɡʷ
Fricative zʃːʒ
Approximant central j
lateral l͡dl

As with other Zapotec languages, the primary distinction between consonant pairs like /t/ and /d/ is not of voicing but between fortis and lenis (measured in length [6] ), respectively, with voicing being a phonetic correlate. [5] There are two exceptions to this in Tilquiapan:

Neither is voiceless, but /nˑ/ is pronounced a little longer and /ld/ replaces /l/ in certain causative verbs in ways similar to other fortis/lenis consonantal changes (e.g. [blaˀa] 'get loose' vs. [bldaˀa] 'let loose'). [5]


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