West Bird's Head languages

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West Bird's Head
Geographic
distribution
West Papua
Linguistic classificationWest Papuan
  • West–Central Bird's Head
    • West Bird's Head
Glottologwest1493[1]

West Bird's Head languages are a small family of poorly documented Papuan languages spoken on the Bird's Head Peninsula of New Guinea.

The West Bird's Head family is a well-defined family of six languages spoken at the western end of the Bird's Head Peninsula of New Guinea and the eastern part of the island of Salawati opposite the Bird's Head's western shore.

Language contact[edit]

West Bird's Head languages have been heavily influenced by Austronesian languages. Austronesian influence is evident in SVO word order (as opposed to SOV word order in most other Papuan language families), pronouns, numerals, and other typological features.[2]:625

Languages[edit]

Kuwani is attested only from a single word list, but is clearly distinct.[3]

Vocabulary comparison[edit]

The following basic vocabulary words are from the Trans-New Guinea database:[4]

gloss Kalabra Moi Moraid Seget Tehit
head safas sawa sawag sadus sam
hair sadin sagin sadie salas gen
eye sifoko suo sgolfun si tsifon
tooth tela efek etəla gifek -hek
leg terit telek ere cek ndeit
louse on sayam wut hain
dog houn ofun ŋouŋ awfu
pig beak baik mimula mon
bird kalen kelem kele klem klen
egg weko tolok begu niwi mesyen
blood hein sdam hijeg sədam hon
bone kodus kodus kedoq nədus honim
skin falak -kesik balg nensiek falek
tree kout ouk pelu bua molom
man nadele (ne) dala dli nanla naadla
sun pun dewe telu tale pun
water kala kala kəla kla sem
fire sal yak salp yap
stone amak kwak amp kuat amak
name nakadi kedi numhamone nomo kendim
eat atkaren wak nagrimi nate atni
one mere mele merəh məre mre
two lap ali telok ali la; lauh

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "West Bird's Head". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Holton, Gary; Klamer, Marian (2018). "The Papuan languages of East Nusantara and the Bird's Head". In Palmer, Bill (ed.). The Languages and Linguistics of the New Guinea Area: A Comprehensive Guide. The World of Linguistics. 4. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. pp. 569–640. ISBN 978-3-11-028642-7.
  3. ^ Voorhoeve, C.L. 1975. West Papuan Phylum languages on the mainland of New Guinea: Bird's Head (Vogelkop) Peninsula. Papuan Languages and the New Guinea Linguistic Scene, ed. by S.A. Wurm, 717-28. (Pacific Linguistics C-38). Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.
  4. ^ Greenhill, Simon (2016). "TransNewGuinea.org - database of the languages of New Guinea". Retrieved 2020-11-05.