Mayani, Luh Anik (2013). A Grammar of Tajio. A Language Spoken in Central Sulawesi. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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This work is a description of Tajio, a Western Malayo-Polynesian language spoken in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. It covers the essential aspects of Tajio grammar without being exhaustive. Tajio has a medium sized phoneme inventory consisting of twenty consonants and five vowels. The language does not have lexical (word) stress; rather, it has a phrasal accent. This phrasal accent regularly occurs on the penultimate syllable of an intonational phrase, rendering this syllable auditorily prominent through a pitch rise. Possible syllable structures in Tajio are (C)V(C). CVN structures are allowed as closed syllables, but CVN syllables in word-medial position are not frequent. As in other languages in the area, the only sequence of consonants allowed in native Tajio words are sequences of nasals followed by a homorganic obstruent. The homorganic nasal-obstruent sequences found in Tajio can occur word-initially and word-medially but never in word-final position. As in many Austronesian languages, word class classification in Tajio is not straightforward. The classification of words in Tajio must be carried out on two levels: the morphosyntactic level and the lexical level. The open word classes in Tajio consist of nouns and verbs. Verbs are further divided into intransitive verbs (dynamic intransitive verbs and statives) and dynamic transitive verbs. Based on their morphological potential, lexical roots in Tajio fall into three classes: single-class roots, dual-class roots and multi-class roots. There are two basic transitive constructions in Tajio: Actor Voice and Undergoer Voice, where the actor or undergoer argument respectively serves as subjects. It shares many characteristics with symmetrical voice languages, yet it is not fully symmetric, as arguments in AV and UV are not equally marked. Neither subjects nor objects are marked in AV constructions. In UV constructions, however, subjects are unmarked while objects are marked either by prefixation or clitization. Evidence from relativization, control and raising constructions supports the analysis that AV and UV are in fact transitive, with subject arguments and object arguments behaving alike in both voices. Only the subject can be relativized, controlled, raised or function as the implicit subject of subjectless adverbial clauses. In contrast, the objects of AV and UV constructions do not exhibit these features. Tajio is a predominantly head-marking language with basic A-V-O constituent order. V and O form a constituent, and the subject can either precede or follow this complex. Thus, basic word order is S-V-O or V-O-S. Subject, as well as non-subject arguments, may be omitted when contextually specified. Verbs are marked for voice and mood, the latter of which is is obligatory. The two values distinguished are realis and non-realis. Depending on the type of predicate involved in clause formation, three clause types can be distinguished: verbal clauses, existential clauses and non-verbal clauses. Tajio has a small number of multi-verbal structures that appear to qualify as serial verb constructions. SVCs in Tajio always include a motion verb or a directional.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Mayani, Luh Anikannie_mayani@yahoo.comUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-69634
Date: 22 November 2013
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 1: Kunstgeschichte, Musikwissenschaft, Medienkultur und Theater, Linguistik, IDH > Institut für Linguistik
Subjects: Language, Linguistics
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Tajio grammar, Tomini-Tolitoli, Central Sulawesi, Western Malayo-PolynesianEnglish
Date of oral exam: 22 January 2014
NameAcademic Title
Himmelmann, NikolausProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes


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