Kómnzo language

Komnzo (also Kómnzo, Kómnjo, Kamundjo) is a Yam language of Papua New Guinea spoken by 150–250 people in the village of Rouku (8°42′06″S 141°35′55″E / 8.701793°S 141.598485°E / -8.701793; 141.598485 (Rouku)) and the town of Morehead.[1]

Komnzo
Rouku
RegionPapua New Guinea
Native speakers
150–250 (2018)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3None (mis)
Glottologkomn1238[2]
Approximate location where Komnzo is spoken
Approximate location where Komnzo is spoken
Komnzo
Approximate location where Komnzo is spoken
Approximate location where Komnzo is spoken
Komnzo
Coordinates: 8°42′06″S 141°35′55″E / 8.701793°S 141.598485°E / -8.701793; 141.598485 (Rouku)Coordinates: 8°42′06″S 141°35′55″E / 8.701793°S 141.598485°E / -8.701793; 141.598485 (Rouku)

PhonologyEdit

ConsonantsEdit

The consonant inventory comprises 18 phonemes (ᵐb, t, ⁿd, k, ᵑɡ, kʷ, ᵑɡʷ, m, n, ŋ, ɸ, ʦ, ⁿʣ, ð, s, r, w, j). The system consists of a series of obstruents (oral and prenasalized plosives and affricates), fricatives, nasals and semivowels. Consonants occurring only in loanwords are: b, g, d, l.[1]

Bilabial Dental Alveolar Palato-alveolar Palatal Velar Labio-velar
Oral obstruent t̪~t

< t >

ts

< z >

k

< k >

< kw >

Prenasal obstruent mb

< b >

nd

< d >

ndz

< nz >

ᵑɡ

< g >

ᵑɡʷ

< gw >

Fricative ɸ

< f >

ð

< th >

s

< s >

Nasal m

< m >

n

< n >

ŋ

< ŋ >

Lateral r~ɾ

< r >

Semivowel j

< y >

w

< w >

VowelsEdit

The vowel inventory consists of eight phonemes (i, e, æ, a, ʏ, ø, u, o) and one epenthetic vowel (ə̯).[1]

  Front (unrounded) Front (rounded) Central Back
Close i

< i >

y

< ü >

u

< u >

Mid e

< e >

œ

< ö >

ə̯

< é >

o

< o >

Near-open æ

< ä >

Open a

< a >

EpenthesisEdit

Komnzo phonology exhibits widespread vowel epenthesis. The epenthetic vowel is usually a short schwa (ə̯), sometimes a short high front or high back vowel. Many syllables and many words in Komnzo lack a specified vowel, e.g. mnz 'house' [mə̯nts] or gwth 'nest' [ᵑɡʷə̯θ].

OrthographyEdit

In the tables above, graphemes are indicated by <angle brackets>. The current orthography of Komnzo does not represent the epenthetic vowel because it can be predicted by the rules of syllabification. This leads to orthographic representations which untrained users might find hard to pronounce, for example: zfth 'reason' is pronounced [tsə̯ɸə̯θ] or fta '36' is pronounced [ɸə̯ta].

Numeral systemEdit

Komnzo number words use a senary numeral system, with the following numerals: nibo (61), fta (62), taruba (63), damno (64), wärämäkä (65) and wi (66). Counting in larger quantities is restricted to a ritualized counting procedure, whereby yam tubers are counted publicly for exchange feasts. For everyday counting above six, English numerals are borrowed.

Komnzo English value
näbi ‘one’ 1
eda ~ yda ‘two’ 2
etha ~ ytho ‘three’ 3
asar ‘four’ 4
tabuthui ‘five’ 5
nibo ‘six’ 6
nibo a näbi 'seven' 6 and 1
nibo a eda 'eight' 6 and 2
fta ‘36’ 62
taruba ‘216’ 63
damno ‘1296’ 64
wärämäkä ‘7776’ 65
wi '46656' 66

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d Döhler 2018
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Kómnjo". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit