North Marquesan language


North Marquesan language

language
name=North Marquesan
nativename=‘E‘o ‘Kenata
region=Northern Marquesas Islands, Tahiti
speakers=~6,000
familycolor=Austronesian
fam2=Malayo-Polynesian
fam3=Central Eastern Malayo-Polynesian
fam4=Eastern Polynesian
fam5=Oceanic
fam6=Central-Eastern Oceanic
fam7=Remote Oceanic
fam8=Central Pacific
fam9=East Fijian-Polynesian
fam10=Polynesian
fam11=Nuclear Polynesian
fam12=Eastern Polynesian
fam13=Central Eastern
fam14=Marquesic
iso2=map|iso3=mrq

North Marquesan is the Marquesic, East Central Polynesian language spoken in the northern Marquesas Islands.

The three most noticeable differences between it and South Marquesan are its preference for /k/ in some cases where South Marquesan uses IPA|/n/ and IPA|/ʔ/ (glottal stop) and its complete replacement of the IPA|/f/ of South Marquesan with IPA|/h/.

This difference can be seen in such pairs as :North Marquesan <=> South Marquesan::haka <=> fana (bay)::ha`e <=> fa`e (house)::koe <=> `oe (you (singular))

North Marquesan exhibits some particularly interesting characteristics. It alone seems to have taken "the other path" in the simplification of Proto-Polynesian nasalized consonants. Where most Polynesian languages simplified "*mb" to IPA|/m/, North Marquesan has IPA|/p/, and where most simplified "*nd" to IPA|/n/, North Marquesan has IPA|/t/. While some Polynesian languages maintained the velar nasal IPA|/ŋ/, many have lost the distinction between the nasals IPA|/ŋ/ and IPA|/n/, merging both into IPA|/n/. North Marquesan, however, prefers IPA|/k/. Another notable feature of North Marquesan is that from it, it appears that Proto-Polynesian had a consonant cluster "*kt", or perhaps a palatal stop (as is the case with all comparative and reconstructive linguistics, this is the subject of some debate)... Whatever that cluster or stop might have been, it is realized in every modern Polynesian language as IPA|/t/ with the exception of North Marquesan, which uses IPA|/k/. Another feature is that, while almost every Polynesian language has dropped IPA|/k/ in many positions, replacing it with IPA|/ʔ/, North Marquesan has retained it. (Tahitian and Samoan have no IPA|/k/ whatsoever, and the IPA|/k/ in modern Hawaiian is actually a "new" way of pronouncing what, to this day, is IPA|/t/ on Niihau.)

The dialects fall roughly into four groups::Tai Pi, spoken in the eastern third of Nuku Hiva, and according to some linguists, a separate language, Tai Pi Marquesan:Tei`i, spoken in western Nuku Hiva:Eastern Ua Pu:Western Ua Pu

Resources

*Marquesan Legends (ISBN B0006W3MXY)


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