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Author: Umbavu Joseph
The Rabha’s inhabit the plains on both sides of the Brahmaputra river in Assam, in the North East of India. Their language is Rabha, a member of the Tibeto-Burman language family.
This is the first ever comprehensive grammar of the Róngdani dialect of Rabha, as spoken in, a.o., the Rabha heartlands. Based on extensive field work by the author, this work is yet another significant step in the meticulous task of piecing together the jigsaw of Himalayan languages as undertaken by George van Driem and his team. Given the steady decline of the Rabha language in favour of Assamese, all those interested in the language and history of the Himalayas and Northern India will welcome this volume.
With a Rabha dictionary/vocabulary, and a series of key Rabha texts shedding light on its people’s customs.
With financial support of the International Institute of Asian Studies (www.iias.nl).
Author: Heleen Plaisier
The Lepcha language has been shrouded in a veil of tantalising mystique ever since Colonel George Mainwaring in the 1870s disseminated the myth that Lepcha was the most perfect of tongues and represented the primordial language of men and fairies. The present book is the first ever comprehensive reference grammar of this language, spoken by the indigenous tribal people of Darjeeling, Sikkim and Kalimpong. Some popular lore about Lepcha has a firm basis in fact, however. Lepcha represents a branch unto itself within the Tibeto-Burman languages. Lepcha is written in its own unique script. This highly readable grammar explains the structure of the language, its sound system and salient features, and includes a lexicon and cultural history. With financial support of the International Institute for Asian Studies (www.iias.nl).
Author: Dörte Borchers
This description of Sunwar, an endangered Tibeto-Burman language spoken in eastern Nepal, is based on extensive field work by the author and contains a chapter with background information on the Sunwar language, its speakers and their culture, followed by sections on the phonology, the indigenous writing system and the morphology of Sunwar. Verb paradigms, glossed texts, a Sunwar-English glossary and bibliographical references are also presented.
Contact between the Sunwar and Nepali languages resulted in language change, most visible in the verbal system, where the older biactantial agreement system typical for Kiranti languages disappeared and suffix conjugations emerged.
This book will interest those interested in descriptive linguistics, language change and languages of South Asia.
Author: John T. King
The present work, a grammar of Dhimal, fills an important void in the documentation of the vast and ramified Tibeto-Burman language family. Dhimal, a little known and endangered tongue spoken in the lowlands of southeastern Nepal by about 20,000 individuals, is detailed in this work. With data gathered in the village of Āṭhiyābārī, the author crafts a readable description of the western dialect, using over 1000 examples to illustrate usage. Included in this reference work are seventeen texts, riddles, songs and a Dhimal-English glossary. Joining other recent ground-breaking linguistic descriptions by researchers from the Himalayan Languages Project at Leiden University, this grammar of Dhimal will have lasting scientific value and aid the Dhimal community in preserving their language.
Author: Anton Lustig
Dr. Anton Lustig’s Grammar and Dictionary of Zaiwa is a thorough and unique documentation of this main language of the Jingpo minority in southwest China. Volume I clarifies the precise meanings of numerous grammatical and lexical categories, in a holistic and all-encompassing but also vivid way, offering real insight into the conceptual universe of this typologically highly interesting tonal language, with suprasegmental traits. Volume II contains a dictionary, stories and songs. This work is also a historical monument for and tribute to this endangered language.
With financial support of the International Institute for Asian Studies (www.iias.nl).
Author: Erik Andvik
A Grammar of Tshangla is the first major linguistic description of Tshangla, a Tibeto-Burman language spoken in Bhutan, northeast India, and southwest China. Written from a functional-typological perspective, it contains a wealth of illustrative examples both from elicited data and from spontaneously generated texts. It is a truly comprehensive description, including sections on phonology, lexicon, morphophonemics, morphosyntactic structure, clause-concatenating constructions, as well as discourse-pragmatic features.
The volume will be of interest to language students, and to linguists and ethnographic scholars seeking to understand the Bhutanese and South Asian linguistic situation. The large amount of raw language data presented here make this Grammar of Tshangla an indispensable tool for students of Tibeto-Burman comparative linguistics and morphosyntactic theory in general.
Himalayan Languages and Linguistics gathers together nine outstanding and original contributions on the Tibeto-Burman and Indo-Aryan languages of this important and culturally diverse mountainous area. Filling a marked gap in our understanding of the languages of this underdocumented region, the collection offers a snapshot of the state of the field of Himalayan language research and linguistic comparison. Drawing on primary fieldwork in China, India, Nepal and Pakistan, as well as on comparative sources, the new analyses outlined in these contributions will interest a readership of linguists, philologists, anthropologists, historians, lexicographers and specialists in the languages and cultures of Inner and South Asia. Contributions cover topics as diverse as linguistic palaeontology, orthographical standardisation, dialectology, phonology, morphology, semantics and syntax.
A Dictionary of the Kedang Language presents the first extensive published record of an Austronesian language on the remote Eastern Indonesian island of Lembata. A special interest of the dictionary resides in the fact that Kedang lies on the boundary line between Austronesian and Papuan languages in Eastern Indonesia. The Kedang entries are translated first into Indonesian and then into English. For ease of access, finder lists are provided in Indonesian and in English. The Introduction situates the language linguistically and sketches the phonology and morphology, as well as the 'pairing' (dyadic sets) in ritual and everyday usage of items of vocabulary characteristic of Kedang.
A Grammar of Prinmi represents the first in-depth description of a Tibeto-Burman language spoken by the Pǔmǐ Nationality and the Zàng Nationality (in Mùlǐ, Sichuan) in southwest China. Prinmi belongs to the Qiangic branch and is closely related to the extinct language of Tangut.
Picus Ding examines in the grammar the phonology (both segmental and suprasegmental), morphology, syntax and information structure of Prinmi, with two sample texts and an English-Prinmi glossary provided in appendices. Some noteworthy features of Prinmi include a wealth of clitics (appearing as proclitic, enclitic, mesoclitic or endoclitic), a lexical tone system akin to Japanese, and a collection of existential verbs that discriminates concreteness, animacy, and location.
Author: Li Jiang
In A Grammar of Guìqióng, Jiāng Lì describes the grammar of Guìqióng, a hitherto undocumented language spoken by alpine people in Kāngdìng county, China. Guìqióng has a lot to offer in its phonology, verbal and nominal morphology, syntax and glossary, distinguishing itself from the neighbouring Tibetan, Chinese, Qiangic and Loloish languages.
The newly discovered features of Guìqióng include breathy vs. modal voice, indefinite number, ablative, ergative, instrumental, dative and genitive case markers, topic and emphatic markers, the diminutive suffixes, the pronominal and deictic systems, demonstratives and numerals, a rich store of differentiated copular verbs expressing equationality, inchoative, animacy vs. inanimacy, dependent existence and negation, verbal affixes indicating directions, present tense of experienced perceptions, gnomic tense, perfective vs. imperfective aspect, modality and evidentiality.