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South Bougainville




Verbs table

gloss layer 1 sg 2 sg 3 sg 1 du 2 du 3 du 1 pl 1incl pl 2 pl 3 pl
disagree lexeme kaamumo kaarumo kaahumo kaamutimo kaarutimo kaahutimo kaamorumo kaamummo kaarummo kaahurumo
disagree stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem
disagree suffix 1 mu ru u mu ru u mo mu ru u
disagree suffix 2 zero zero zero ti ti ti ru m m ru
cry lexeme maamo paamo paamo maatimo paatimo paatimo maaramo maammo paammo paaramo
cry stem #stem1 #stem2 #stem2 #stem1 #stem2 #stem2 #stem1 #stem1 #stem2 #stem2
cry suffix 1 zero zero zero zero zero zero zero zero zero zero
cry suffix 2 zero zero zero ti ti ti ra m m ra
look lexeme monomo monimo monumo monopitimo monitimo monutimo monomo monommo monimmo monamo
look stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem #stem
look suffix 1 o i u opi i u o o i a
look suffix 2 zero zero zero ti ti ti zero m m zero

Motuna notes

  • The forms used for illustration in the database are the same subject general tense forms, used with medial verbs dependent clauses. The corresponding independent clause form has additional suffixes that distinguish gender (for singular subjects) and add a paucal vs. plural distinction.

  • Numerous other TAM distinctions are possible through the use of different terminal suffixes, but the paradigmatic configuration of person and number markers remains consistent.

  • Intransitive verbs are divided into S~A~ (agentive) (e.g. look) and S~O~ (patientive) subject types (e.g. 'disagree'). According to Onishi (1994: 267), the agentive verbs:

    are the largest in number. The majority of S~A~ verbs denote volitional activities, but some of them denote uncontrollable events (such as /haarok-/ 'to fall') or processes (such as /hoNnak-/ 'to grow up'). Only twenty-odd So verbs (including those found in elicitation sessions) have been attested, which are all semantically characterised as "Patient- or Experiencer-oriented"

    This suggests the disinction is at least in part lexically specified.

  • There are five irregular verbs, represented here by 'cry', which all display the same type of paradigm (alternation of the stem-initial consonant between 1st and 2nd/3rd person, absence of the innermost layer of suffixes).


Onishi, Masayuki. 1994. A Grammar of Motuna (Bougainville, Papua New Guinea). PhD thesis, Australian National University.