By Marian Klamer
Teiwa is a non-Austronesian ('Papuan') language spoken at the island of Pantar, in japanese Indonesia, situated simply north of Timor island. It has approx. 4,000 audio system and is very endangered. whereas the non-Austronesian languages of the Alor-Pantar archipelago are basically regarding one another, as indicated by means of the various obvious cognates and the very comparable pronominal paradigms stumbled on around the team, their genetic dating to different Papuan languages is still debatable. positioned a few 1,000 km from their putative Papuan acquaintances at the New Guinea mainland, the Alor-Pantar languages are the main far-off westerly Papuan outliers. A grammar of Teiwa offers a grammatical description of 1 of those 'outlier' languages. The booklet is established as a reference grammar: after a basic advent at the language, it audio system and the linguistic scenario on Alor and Pantar, the grammar builds up from an outline of the language's phonology and notice sessions to its greater grammatical parts and their mutual family: nominal words, serial verb buildings, clauses, clause combos, and knowledge constitution. whereas many Papuan languages are morphologically complicated, Teiwa is nearly analytic: it has just one paradigm of item marking prefixes, and one verbal suffix marking realis prestige. different typologically attention-grabbing positive factors of the language contain: (i) the presence of uvular fricatives and prevents, that is strange for languages of jap Indonesia; (ii) the absence of trivalent verbs: transitive verbs decide upon a unmarried (animate or inanimate) item, whereas the extra player is expressed with a separate predicate; and (iii) the absence of morpho-syntactically encoded embedded clauses. A grammar of Teiwa relies on fundamental box facts, gathered through the writer in 2003-2007. a range of glossed and translated Teiwa texts of varied style
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Extra resources for A Grammar of Teiwa
Teiwa has no morpho-syntactically marked passive construction. Agent subjects may be pragmatically ‘back-grounded’ by using the generic noun hala ‘others, unknown people’. Hala expresses an unspecified subject (cf. Keenan and Dryer 2007a: 354). An illustration is (17). An alternative English translation of this sentence would be one with a passive: ‘He was given raw rice, some water was brought [to him], he was told to eat’. others gave him raw rice, yir la pin ma hala wa qau ga-soi na... ’ Note that in such constructions, hala is the grammatical subject: it occurs in subject position, and the morpho-syntax of the sentence is identical to main declarative clauses with an overt subject.
2009). 7. 6. 21 Austronesian and non-Austronesian (‘Papuan’) language families in E Indonesia, after Ross (2005: 10, 31). 22 1. Introduction While the Alor-Pantar languages are clearly non-Austronesian, their long distance genetic relationship to other non-Austronesian/Papuan languages remains controversial. Located some 1,000 km from their nearest Papuan neighbour on the New Guinea mainland, they are are considered the most distant westerly Papuan outlier. Papuan languages are both lexically and morpho-syntactically a highly heterogeneous group, and due to lack of shared vocabularies, the familiar methods of lexical comparison are often hard to apply in comparative studies of these languages.
Within the heterogeneous group of Papuan languages, various genealogical units have been suggested. Wurm (1982) proposed five major phyla of ‘Papuan’ languages (as well as six minor ones and a number of isolates). g. Foley 1986) suggest that there are at least 60 different Papuan families, some consisting of only a few members or even isolates. The largest family of Papuan languages that has been proposed is the Trans New Guinea (TNG) family, with about 300 languages (Ross 1995b, 2005). With two million speakers, this family comprises about half the Papuan speaking population (Foley 2000:363).
A Grammar of Teiwa by Marian Klamer