|Ethnicity||mostly Miao, some Yao|
|2.1 million (1995)|
hea – Northern
hmq – Eastern
hms – Southern
The Hmu language (hveb Hmub), also known as Qiandong Miao (黔东 Eastern Guizhou Miao), Central Miao, East Hmongic, or (somewhat ambiguously) Black Miao, is a dialect cluster of Hmongic languages of China. The best studied dialect is that of Yǎnghāo (养蒿) village, Taijiang County, Guizhou Province, China.
Autonyms include m̥hu˧ in Kaili, mo˧ in Jinping County, mu˩˧ in Tianzhu County, m̥ə˧ in Huangping County, qa˧ nəu˩˧ in some parts of Qiandongnan (Miaoyu Jianzhi 苗语简志 1985), and ta˩ mu˩ in Rongshui Miao Autonomous County, Guangxi. Ná-Meo, spoken by the Mieu people of Cao Minh Commune, Tràng Định District, Lạng Sơn Province, Vietnam, may be closely related.
Subdivisions and distribution
Wang Fushi (1985) groups the Qiandong Miao languages as follows.
- Northern: 1,000,000 speakers in Kaili, Majiang, Nandan, Leishan, Taijiang, Huangping, Jianhe, Zhenyuan, Sansui, Shibing, Sandu, Fuquan, Pingba, Zhenning, Xingren, Zhenfeng, Anlong, Wangmo, etc.
- Eastern: 250,000 speakers in Jinping, Liping, Jianhe, Jingzhou, Tongdao, Huitong, etc.
- Southern: 350,0000 speakers in Rongjiang, Congjiang, Nandan, Sandu, Rongshui, Sanjiang, etc.
- Western (Raojia): 15,000 speakers in Heba of Majiang, Mianluo of Duyun, Sandu, Rongjiang, parts of Nandan
Wu Zhengbiao (2009) divides Hmu into 7 different dialects. Past classifications usually included only 3 or 4 dialects. For example, Li Jinping & Li Tianyi (2012), based on past classifications, divide Hmu into the 3 dialects of Northern, Southern, and Eastern. Datapoint locations of representative dialects are from Li Yunbing (2000).
- Eastern (Representative dialect: Sanjiang township 三江乡, Jinping County, Guizhou)
- Northern (Representative dialect: Yanghao village 养蒿村, Guading town 挂丁镇, Kaili city, Guizhou)
- Kaili (in Yanghao 养蒿 of Guading Township 挂丁镇, etc.)
- Leishan County
- Taijiang County
- Shibing County
- Gedong 革东镇 in Jianhe County
- Huangping County
- Fuquan County
- Weng'an County
- Xingren County
- parts of Anlong County
- Yangwu 杨武乡, Longquan 龙泉镇, Paidiao 排调镇, Xingren 兴仁镇 townships, and also parts of Yahui 雅灰乡 in Danzhai County
- Bagu Township 坝固镇: Jijia 鸡贾, Yanglie 羊列, Baduo 把朵, Metao 么陶
- Wangsi Township 王司镇: Taohua 桃花, Xinchang 新场, Malu 乌路, Wuzhai 五寨
- Pu'an Township 普安镇: Zongjiang 总奖村, Guanghua 光华村, Xingfu 幸福村
- Western (including Raojia; Representative dialect: Baixing village 白兴村, Heba township 河坝乡, Majiang County, Guizhou)
- Southern (Representative dialect: Yangpai village 羊排村, Yangwu township 扬武乡, Danzhai County, Guizhou)
- Southeastern 1 (Representative dialect: Datu village 大土村, Jiuqian township 九迁乡, Libo County, Guizhou)
- Southeastern 2 (Representative dialect: Zhenmin 振民, Gongdong township 拱洞乡, Rongshui County, Guangxi)
Hmu has been recognized as a branch of Hmongic since the 1950s. Wang (1985) recognized three varieties. Matisoff (2001) treated these as distinct languages, which is reflected in Ethnologue. Lee (2000) added a fourth variety, Western Hmu (10,000 speakers), among the Yao, and Matisoff (2006) lists seven (Daigong, Kaili [N], Lushan, Taijiang [N], Zhenfeng [N], Phö, Rongjiang [S]).
Northern Qiandong Miao, also known as Central Miao and as Eastern Guizhou Hmu (黔东方言 Qián-Dōng fāngyán), was chosen as the standard for Hmu-language textbooks in China, based on the pronunciation of Yǎnghāo (养蒿) village.[not in citation given]
The phonemic inventory and alphabetic transcription are as follows.
|Nasal||voiced||m /m/||n /n/||ni /nʲ/||ng /ŋ/|
|aspirated||hm /m̥ʰ/||hn /n̥ʰ/||hni /n̥ʲʰ/|
|Plosive||tenuis||b /p/||d /t/||di /tʲ/||g /k/||gh /q/||(/ʔ/)|
|aspirated||p /pʰ/||t /tʰ/||ti /tʲʰ/||k /kʰ/||q /qʰ/|
|Affricate||tenuis||z /ts/||j /tɕ/|
|aspirated||c /tsʰ/||q /tɕʰ/|
|voiced||w /v/||r /z/||y /ʑ/||v /ɣ/|
|tenuis||f /f/||s /s/||x /ɕ/||h /h/|
|aspirated||hf /fʰ/||hs /sʰ/||hx /ɕʰ/||hv /xʰ/|
|tenuis||dl /ɬ/||dli /ɬʲ/|
|aspirated||hl /ɬʰ/||hli /ɬʲʰ/|
|Lateral approximant||l /l/||li /lʲ/|
[ʔ] is not distinct from a zero initial (that is, if we accept /ʔ/ as a consonant, there are no vowel-initial words in Hmu), and only occurs with tones 1, 3, 5, 7.
The aspirated nasals and fricatives do not exist in Southern or Eastern Hmu; cognates words use their unaspirated homologues. Further, in Eastern Hmu, di, ti merge into j, q; c merges into x; r (Northern /z/) merges into ni; and v is pronounced [w]. In Southern Hmu, words cognate with hni (and some with ni) are pronounced [nʲʑ]; those with r are [nz]; and some words exchange s and x.
|Close||i /i/||u /u/|
|Mid||ai /ɛ/||en /en/||e /ə/||o /o/||ong /oŋ/|
|Open||a /ɑ/||ang /ɑŋ/|
Ai /ɛ/ does not occur after palatalized consonants. /en/ after palatalized consonants is spelled in.
|Close component is front||ei /ej/|
|Close component is back||eu /əw/|
Additional diphthongs occur in Chinese loans.
All dialects have eight tones. There is no sandhi. In the chart below, Northern Hmu is represented by Yanghao village (Kaili City), Eastern Hmu by 偶里 village (Jinping County), and Southern Hmu by 振民 (Rongshui County).
|1||b||˧ 3||˧ 3||˧ 3|
|3||d||˧˥ 35||˨̤ 2||˧˥ 35|
|5||t||˦ 4||˦˥ 45||˦ 4|
|7||k||˥˧ 53||˨˦ 24||˨˦ 24|
|2||x||˥ 5 ~ ˦˥ 45||˦˨ 42||˥˧ 53|
|4||l||˩̤ 1||˨˩ 21||˧˩ 31|
|6||s||˩˧̤ 13||˥ 5||˨̤ 2|
|8||f||˧˩ 31||˩˨̤ 12||˨˩˧ 213|
The lowest tones—Northern tones 4 and 6, Eastern tones 3 and 8, and Southern tone 6—are said to make the preceding consonant murmured (breathy voiced), presumably meaning that these are murmured tones as in other Hmongic languages. They are marked with 〈◌̤〉 in the chart.
References and notes
- Northern reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Eastern reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Southern reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
- Guangxi Minority Languages Orthography Committee. 2008. Vocabularies of Guangxi ethnic languages [广西民族语言方音词汇]. Beijing: Nationalities Publishing House [民族出版社].
- Nguyễn Văn Thắng (2007). Ambiguity of Identity: The Mieu in North Vietnam. Chiang Mai: Silkworm Books.
- Li Jinping, Li Tianyi [李锦平, 李天翼]. 2012. A comparative study of Miao dialects [苗语方言比较研究]. Chengdu: Southwest Jiaotong University Press
- Representative dialect: Yanghao, Sankeshu, Kaili City 贵州凯里三棵树养蒿
- Representative dialect: Gaolian, Xiajiang, Congjiang County 贵州从江下江高联
- Representative dialect: Meihua, Zhulin, Tianzhu County 贵州天柱竹林梅花
- Chen, Qiguang [陈其光] (2013). Miao and Yao language [苗瑶语文]. Beijing: China Minzu University Press.
- 石德富 Shi Defu; 苗语基础教程(黔东方言) Miao-yu jichu jiaocheng (Qian-Dong fangyan) 中央民族大学出版社 Central Minorities Publishing House (2006-08出版)
- Mă, Xuéliáng and Tái Chānghòu. 1956. A preliminary survey of the phonology of the Miao dialects in the southeast of Kweichou. Yŭyán Yánjiū 1:265-282.
|Miao test of Wikipedia at Wikimedia Incubator|