Pronunciation[tɕem, tɕəm, tɕam]
DefinitionThe appearance of something that is interspersed throughout a visual field, such as fruit or pods distributed all over a tree or bush; To break or be broken off of something else, often resulting in an uneven or ragged-appearing rupture, as happens when no sharp tools are used.
Sensory ModalityMOVEMENT > Configurational
Usually pronounced at a higher pitch than surrounding utterance , and often accompanied by a sweeping gesture
Transcriptionpasota paʎaɕa kuwai, 'tuɾi ɾikuk ɕamwi: tɕem! apaɾiɕkami ɕajawŋ' niɾa
Translation'Harvesting those pasu fruits, give to me' she said 'come and look brother! They are chem (all over the tree)!'
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Transcriptiontɕasna hatuŋ hatuŋ tukukpi wagɾa mikuŋga? // Mana! Ndaja piɾu tɕem tɕem pakiɕa mikuŋga
TranslationNuckolls: (when the grasses) grow tall like that do the cows eat them? Cadena: No, well yes, breaking them chem chem they'll eat them
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Transcriptionpaj kaspita tɕəm pakiɕa [motion] ɕuk ɾandi apiɾa, ɾiki! [motion] wax wax umaj apiɕa takaŋ
TranslationHe, the stick chem (roughly) breaking, he grabbed another instead, look. Then wax wax (hitting above him). Catching his head, it hits
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Transcriptionkaspita kutɕiʎu iʎag kaspita apiɕa usuɕina tɕam pakinawn
TranslationGrabbing the stick, lacking a knife, taking the stick, like a bear (strongly) they break it off chem (roughly).
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Transcriptiontɕajga tsag tsag tsag imaɕinta ajtɕa jajkuɕkata dzas mana suɾkwibaktɕu aŋ tɕam tɕam(pa) kilinaɕka kilinaɕka aka pakiɾiɕka
TranslationAnd so tsag tsag tsag, in the way that it's entered the flesh, it's not pull out-able. (It goes) chem chem (because) it's been incised into sections and breaks off
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Nuckolls, Janis and Tod Swanson. 2024. chem. The Quechua Ideophonic Dictionary. Online: