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Nouns table

gloss layer sg pl
river (1) lexeme waryb warybys
river (1) suffix zero bys
village (2) lexeme wabØr waryb
village (2) suffix zero ryb
lobster (3) lexeme arukweg arukwegas
lobster (3) suffix zero as
ridge pole (4a) lexeme maduku̥ madimeb
ridge pole (4a) suffix zero meb
ear lobe (4b) lexeme muguruku̥ mugurib
ear lobe (4b) suffix zero rib
star (4c) lexeme unuku̥ unib
star (4c) suffix zero ib
duck (4d) lexeme mabiteku̥ mabiteguhijer
duck (4d) suffix zero guhijer
canoe (4e) lexeme karahoku̥ kararuhijer
canoe (4e) suffix zero hijer
fly (4f) lexeme amagoku̥ amagou
fly (4f) suffix zero u
spider (5a) lexeme daudam daudeip
spider (5a) suffix zero eip
a.stick (5b) lexeme butum butip
a.stick (5b) suffix zero ipi̥
sun/moon (6) lexeme aun aub
sun/moon (6) suffix zero b
father (7) lexeme jaken jakenim
father (7) suffix zero m
friend (8a) lexeme arapeɲ arapeʃ
friend (8a) suffix zero ʃ
frog (8b) lexeme maki makihas
frog (8b) suffix zero has
feast (9a) lexeme ilup ilugwis
feast (9a) suffix zero gwis
banana (9b) lexeme apap apas
banana (9b) suffix zero s
bird (10) lexeme aramir aramiguh̥
bird (10) suffix zero guh̥
shadow (10) lexeme aboril aboriguh̥
shadow (10) suffix zero guh̥
shelf (11) lexeme alit alitogu̥
shelf (11) suffix zero ogu̥
vine (12) lexeme maduh madururuh
vine (12) suffix zero ruh
sugar cane (12) lexeme arou̥h̥ araruh
sugar cane (12) suffix zero ruh
ear (13a) lexeme atah̥ ateh̥
ear (13a) suffix zero eh̥
hand drum (13b) lexeme wiruh̥ wirih̥
hand drum (13b) suffix zero ih̥

Arapesh notes

  • The analysis is taken from Fraser and Corbett (1997), based in turn on Aronoff's (1994) account of Fortune's (1940) analysis.
  • The 22 noun classes map onto 13 classes of gender (as seen in agreement), with the usual correspondence as follows:
    noun termination adjectival suffix
    singular plural singular plural
    by̥ bys bi bysi
    bør ryb børi røbi
    ag as gi or gali gasi
    g gas
    ku̥ meb kwi ui or wali
    ku̥ rib
    ku̥ ib
    ku̥ guhijer
    ku̥ ijer
    ku̥ u
    m ipi̥ mi eipi or ipi
    n b ni bi
    n m ni or nali mi
    eɲi eʃi
    V Vhas
    pu̥ gwis pi si
    pu̥ s
    r guh ri guhi
    t togu̥ ti gi
    t gu̥
    uh ruh whi ruhi
    ah eh ahi ehi
  • The gender with the agreements eɲi ~ eʃi is the default type; some nouns which "should" belong to certain genders according the above chart nevertheless may exceptionally be assigned to this default class.


Aronoff, Mark. 1994. Morphology by itself: Stems and inflectional classes. Cambridge: MIT Press.

Fortune, R.F. 1940. Arapesh. New York: J.J. Augustin.

Fraser, Norman. M. and Greville G. Corbett. 1997. Defaults in Arapesh. Lingua 103. 25-57.