A Grammar of Kharia: A South Munda Language by John Peterson

By John Peterson

Kharia, spoken in central-eastern India, is a member of the southern department of the Munda family members, which types the western department of the Austro-Asiatic phylum, stretching from relevant India to Vietnam. the current examine offers the main broad description of Kharia up to now and covers all significant parts of the grammar. Of specific curiosity within the number of Kharia defined right here, is that there's no proof for assuming the life of parts-of-speech, equivalent to noun, adjective and verb. quite features similar to reference, amendment and predication are expressed via one in every of syntactic buildings, mentioned right here as 'syntagmas'. the amount could be of equivalent curiosity to normal linguists from the fields of typology, linguistic idea, areal linguistics, Munda linguistics in addition to South Asianists often.

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4. It has been brought to the attention of this author that a fourth system has not only been proposed for representing glottalization but that this has also been accepted by "the government" as the official orthographical symbol for representing glottalization in Kharia, although it has not yet been possible to confirm this. In this system, the apostrophe " ' " from Roman script is used, whether to represent a glottalized vowel or a pre-glottalized stop. Thus for [~1'] 'house', and <'b> for (lb'm].

1). After vowels, the glide -y- [j] obligatorily appears before the past active marker to avoid a hiatus and, for some speakers, optionally after consonants as well. b ([;,1b"JD] < *=o'l=m), respectively. IRR' (see below), it is also considered to belong to 1he enclitic. g. JRR=pL] 'they will come' vs. PST] 's/he came' This does not hold for other contentive morphemes ending in 11/: ol'bring', ol=na 'to bring' (infinitive). 'l'] after a morpheme-final /j/, /goj=si'l/ :::::> ['g:Jyc'1:. 'l'] 's/he has died' However, this is not obligatory, and the pronunciation ['g:J1j,.

It stands alone in its scope in Munda ethnography and is so detailed that it has even led one modem scholar to write of it that "Later ethnographic accounts have nothing significant to add" (Pfeffer, 1993: 222). Other, more recent ethnological studies in English include Pfeffer (1993) on Kharia totemism, Sinha (1984) on the Hill Kharia, and Vidyarthi & Upadhyay (1980) on all three Kharia groups. A relatively large number of linguistic studies have also appeared on Kharia, most of which are now primarily of interest from a historical perspective, such as Banerjee (1894 [1982]), the first attempt to describe the language systematically, Tea Districts Labour Association (1929), a short but remarkably precise description of the language, and Floor et al.

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