|Native speakers||6,000 (2001)|
slz – Salawati
kgb – Kawe
lcc – Legenyem
bhc – Biga
wuy – Wauyai
xmx – Maden
Ma'ya is an Austronesian language spoken in West Papua by 6,000 people. It is spoken in coastal villages on the islands Misool, Salawati, and Waigeo in the Raja Ampat islands. It is spoken on the boundary between Austronesian and Papuan languages. Both its tone and stress are lexically distinctive. That means both the stress and the pitch of a word may affect meaning. The stress and tone are quite independent from one another, in contrast to their occurrence Swedish and Serbo-Croatian. It has three tonemes (high, rising and falling) Out of some 1236 Austronesian languages, there are only 15 with lexical tone; this appears to be a remnant of shift from Papuan languages. There are five dialects of the language, three on the island Waigeo (Laganyan, Wauyai, and Kawe), and one each on Misool (Biga) and Salawati, the prestige dialect being the one on Salawati. The Waigeo dialects have /s/ and /ʃ/ where the varieties spoken on Salwati and Misool have /t/ and /c/ respectively.
- Matbat language, a neighboring language with more extreme Papuan influence and five tones.
- Salawati reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Kawe reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Legenyem reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Biga reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Wauyai reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
Maden reference at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
- Remijsen, Bert (2001). "Dialectal Variation in the Lexical Tone System of Ma’ya". Language and Speech 44 (4): 473–499.
- http://www.iias.nl/nl/32/IIAS_NL32_29.pdf New Perspectives in Word-Prosodic Typology by Bert Remijsen
- Rivera-Castillo, Yolanda; Pickering, Lucy. "PHONETIC CORRELATES OF STRESS AND TONE IN A MIXED SYSTEM". Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages 19 (2): 261–284.
- van der Leeden, Alex (1993). Ma'ya: Phonology. Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia. p. 97. ISBN 979-8258-01-0, 9789798258015 Check
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