Huarpean languages

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Huarpean
Warpean
Ethnicity: Huarpe people
Geographic
distribution:
Cuyo Province, Argentina
Linguistic classification: Macro-Warpean ?
Macro-Jibaro ?
  • Huarpean
Subdivisions:
Glottolog: huar1251[1]
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Huarpe (Warpe) was a small language family of central Argentina (historic Cuyo Province) that consisted of two closely related languages, traditionally considered dialects, that were documented: Allentiac (Alyentiyak, Huarpe) and Millcayac (Milykayak). A third, Puntano of San Luis, was not documented before the languages went extinct.

Kaufman (1994) tentatively linked Huarpe to the Mura-Matanawi languages in a family he called Macro-Warpean. However, he noted that "no systematic study" had been made, so that it is best to consider them independent families. Swadesh and Suárez both connected Huarpe to Macro-Jibaro, a possibility that has yet to be investigated.

Phonology[edit]

The two languages had apparently similar sound systems, and were not dissimilar from Spanish, at least from the records we have. Barros (2007) reconstructs the consonants as follows:

Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal m n ɲ ŋ
Plosive p t k
Affricate ts
Fricative s ʃ h
Semivowel w j (ɰ)
Lateral l ʎ
Trill r

Allentiac had at least five vowels, written a, e, i, o, ù. The ù is thought to represent the central vowel [ɨ].

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Huarpean". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.