7

Some of these letters are clumsy imitations of Ancient South Arabian script, others are made up. It looks like a fake. Many years ago I worked as a volunteer at the National Museum in San’a. The storeroom of the museum was full of this sort of thing. The government had the enlightened policy of paying farmers for any “antiquity” they brought in, even if it ...


5

In essence, Swahili stress has two rules: If the word is shaped like NC(C*)V, the first nasal is syllabic, and stressed. (For example, ḿbwa "dog", ḿtu "person".) Otherwise, the stress is on the second vowel from the end, and there are no syllabic nasals. (For example, kusóma "to read", nitazibembeléza "I'm going to pet them", kondóo "sheep".) One way to ...


5

This is a very small field, where one abstaining scholar prevents reaching a consensus. I think one should discount any one-off pre-Greenbergian affiliation claims which have not been re-affirmed, since they were generally not well-founded save for lowest levels (such as "Bantu", but not e.g. "Nilotic" insofar as it excluded "Nilo-Hamitic"). Dimmendaal's "...


4

For Lingala grammars, you might want to read this paper, which contains references to grammars (not well-meaninged class projects labeled "grammar") and some discussion of the dialect problem. Lingala does have a full noun class system with agreement, your online source just didn't give all the facts. There is some variation in the class system in "ordinary"...


4

No there are no such communities - we gotta understand that the circumstances under which European people resettled and African people found themselves in North America are different. When slaves were brought to a specific area it quite often happened that they represent different languages and even different language families, this is one factor, the other ...


3

Excellent question! It just so happens that this is exactly what my group is researching at the moment! Are there Bantu languages where, unlike Zulu and Swahili, the subject prefix system has only three third person pronouns, two singular and one plural, or anyway far fewer prefixes than noun classes? If by "pronouns" you mean "subject agreement markers",...


3

This is years late, but offering it anyway: Ethnologue tends to approach language from what I've heard called a "splitter" perspective, where in effect certain differences are considered sufficient to define separate languages. Where the names (endonyms) used for the languages are also different, that may reinforce the idea of separate languages. In Africa ...


2

Maybe too late for you, but... The largest language-group of that type is Beti-Fang language (Fang, Bulu, Ewondo, Ntumu, Eton) which is probably large enough; otherwise, there are Douala and Cameroonian Pidgin spoken by a million or more people (and French and English, the official languages), but for the most part, you have to aggregate across languages to ...


2

Indic languages are not related to the Bantu languages genetically; however, both Hindi/Urdu and Swahili were influenced by Arabic due to contact between speakers. Neither of these words arose through mutual loans from Arabic, though; 'lion' in Arabic is 'أسد,' or ' 'asada.'


2

That is a coincidence, the two words are not related, neither are the Indo-European and Bantu languages. The Swahili simba 'lion' comes from the Proto-Bantu *ǹcímbá 'any of various wild felines or similar, including wildcat, lion, leopard, civet, genet'.


2

I will re-interpret the question so that it is clearly not off topic, as follows: I met a gentleman who claims to speak the Bamileke language Kwa in Cameroon. He denied that it was the language Kwa', which is known to be a dialect of Bamileke. I discerned the following features of the language... Since he denies that his language is Kwa', I would ...


2

You can get such information from Ethnologue. I don't know of e.g. a document that lists all languages of Africa along with L1 population, but you can piece together such a list (tediously, unfortunately) from the Ethnologue info. Also, you either need to subscribe, or spend forever doing this 4 pages at a time (since free access is a thing of the past). ...


2

I gave this a try with my comment: ብርሃን bǝrhan is from በርሀ bärhä "to be bright". This is the source of በራ bärra too. ብሩህ bǝruhǝ is probably related, since it has b and r at the start. برق is either the verb baraqa "to produce lightning" or "to shine, glitter, sparkle, flash", or the noun barq "lightning", and comes ...


2

The term "mora counting" has a specific technical meaning, based on the connection between duration and certain linguistic units (moras, syllables, stress feet). In a so-called syllable-timed language, the duration of an word best correlates with the number of syllables in the word. In a mora-timed language it correlates best with the number of moras. The ...


2

That text uses the old (obsolete) orthography developed by J.G. Christaller about 150 years ago. (t)w̌ represents labio-palatalization, IPA [tɕɥ], which is now simply tw (it's predictable, but was in the old spelling because it's phonetically noteworthy). Akan vowels are a bit challenging since it sounds like they have 3 kinds of mid vowels (ɛ e ɪ but ɪ ...


1

I am not persuaded that the project had that name in the day – I see the links, but there's no hard evidence that that name was originally associated with the rockets. It is possible that it derives from the personal name Nzwamba Simanga, who has promoted that video across the internet. The problem is that without hard historical evidence as to how the name ...


1

Koen Bostoen would know the answer. The known resources on Vili are listed here. Kongo "goat" would be along the lines of nkombo and "lion" is nkosi, but there are many forms of Kongo: these are from Manyanga. As for "tiger" (also lion) there are no tigers in Africa or Curaçao (ignoring modern zoos), and no lions in Curaçao, so the source and current gloss ...


1

I tenatively propose that you can not, and that click identity depends very heavily on the burst. I don't know if anyone has run the experimenent, but you can sort of start with recordings of Nama, Xhosa or !Xóõ, edit out the burst, and play the result. Ideally you'd want minimal pairs (and actual speakers of the language for your subjects), but you can get ...


1

The song appears in 2 versions, one in Portuguese, and the other in the unknown language. The Portuguese lyrics are (omitting repeated lines): Lerê, lerê, lerê, lerê, lerê Vida de negro é difícil, é difícil como o quê Eu quero morrer de noite, na tocaia me matar Eu quero morrer de açoite se tu, negra, me deixar Vida de negro é difícil, é ...


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