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Plant Names in the Tanzanian Bantu Language Vidunda: Structure and (Some) Etymology.

Paper i proceeding
Författare Karsten Legère
Publicerad i Selected Proceedings of the 38th Annual Conference on African Linguistics, ed. Masangu Matondo, Fiona
Volym Linguistic Theory and African Language Documentati
Sidor 217-228
ISSN ISBN 978-1-57473-429-4
Publiceringsår 2009
Publicerad vid Institutionen för språk och litteraturer
Sidor 217-228
Språk en
Länkar www.lingref.com/cpp/acal/38/abstrac...
Ämnesord Tanzania, Bantu languages, plant name analysis, noun class allocation
Ämneskategorier Engelska språket, Afrikanska språk

Sammanfattning

The paper summarizes results of research in names of wild plants in the Vidunda language (G 38, autonym: Chividunda) spoken by approx. 10,000 people in the Morogoro Region, Kilosa District (mainly Vidunda Ward) of Tanzania. In the course of a three year field study about 600 plant names (and plant specimens for botanical identification) were collected. As nouns these plant names display the structure NCP (noun class prefix) plus NS (noun stem), which is typical for Bantu languages. The noun class allocation is in particular interesting for the quite unique class 5(a) - 4 pairing ([l]i-, mi-) which is relevant for approximately 88 percent of the nouns. The plant names are divided into simple (non-derived) and complex (derived) lexemes. There is frequent similarity to Swahili or (more generally) to Bantu (Proto-Bantu) stems. Complex lexemes consist of compounds and the combination head noun plus adnominal modifier. The former are mainly a verb-noun combination as well as a reduplicated stem or a reduplicated syllable. The latter consist of a simple or complex lexeme that is followed by another noun or an adjective. The paper focuses also on the conceptual source of adnominal modifiers. Conceptualization is further illustrated by plant names which reflect plant use or function, habitat, behavior, or morphology. (Publication abstract - http://www.lingref.com/cpp/acal/38temp3948/abstract2149.html)

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