Aka-Jeru language

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Jeru
Aka-Jeru
Native toIndia
RegionAndaman Islands; interior and south North Andaman island, Sound island. Presently Strait Island
Native speakers
3 (2020)[1]
Great Andamanese
  • Northern
    • Jeru
Language codes
ISO 639-3akj
Glottologakaj1239
Schematic Map of Andamanese Languages & Tribes.png
Mixed Great Andamanese
Great Andamanese koine
Native toIndia
RegionStrait Island
Ethnicity60 (2020)[2]
Extinctlast semi-fluent speaker, Nao Jr., died in 2009[2]
Mixed Khora–Bo–Jeru–Sare on a Jeru base
Language codes
ISO 639-3gac
Glottologmixe1288

The Jeru language, Aka-Jeru (also known as Yerawa, not to be confused with Järawa), is a Great Andamanese language, of the Northern group. Jeru was spoken in the interior and south coast of North Andaman and on Sound Island. A koine of Aka-Jeru and other northern Great Andamanese languages is remembered by a few Aka-Jeru heritage speakers on Strait Island.

History[edit]

As the numbers of Great Andamanese progressively declined over the succeeding decades, the various Great Andamanese tribes either disappeared altogether or became amalgamated through intermarriage. By 1994, the 38 remaining Great Andamanese who could trace their ancestry and culture back to the original tribes belonged to only three of them (Jeru, Bo, and Cari).[3]

The resulting Great Andamanese language was based on Jeru or a creole based on several languages, of which Jeru was a primary component. The last fluent speaker, Nao, died in 2009. [4]

Grammar[edit]

See Great Andamanese languages for more general grammatical description.

Great Andamanese koine[edit]

Great Andamanese koine is based primarily on Jeru, with lexical and grammitacal influence from other North Great Andamanese languages (Aka-Bo, Aka-Kora and Aka-Cari). It is a head-marking polysynthetic and agglutinative language with a SOV pattern. It has a very elaborate system for marking inalienability,[5] with seven possessive markers reflecting different body-divisions. These markers appear as proclitics that classify a large number of nouns as dependent categories. It is proposed that the Great Andamanese conceptualise their world through these interdependencies and thus the grammar encodes this important phenomenon in every grammatical category expressing referential, attributive and predicative meaning.[6]

Phonology[edit]

The Great Andamanese koine has a seven-vowel system.

Vowels
Front Central Back
Close i u
Close-mid e o
Open-mid ɛ ɔ
Open a
Consonants
Labial Dental
/Alveolar
Retroflex Palatal Velar
Nasal m n ɲ ŋ
Plosive voiceless p t ʈ k
voiceless aspirated ʈʰ
voiced b d ɖ
Fricative s ʃ
Trill[clarification needed] ɾ
Approximant w l j

Vocabulary[edit]

PGA varnamala

Koine vocabulary:[7][8]

Meaning Great Andamanese IPA[this appears to be messed up] Devanagari
nest aaracha araca आराचा
housefly ijibu iɟibu ईजीबू
snake(king cobra) ulukhu ulukʰu ऊलूखू
chilli ekajira ekaɟira एकाजीरा
deer airen ɛren ऐरेन
fishing net ocho oco ओचो
axe aulo ɔlo औलो
snail kalatop kalaʈɔp कालाटौप
dugong kauroing kɔrɔiɲ कौरौईञ
coconut khider kʰider खीदेर
road ngorto ŋɔrtɔ ङौरतौ
betelnut chaum cɔm चौम
dolphin choa coa चोआ
bat jibet ɟibeʈ जीबेट
fish nyure ɲure ञूरे
heron taka ʈaka टाका
tongue thatat ʈʰatat ठातात
sunset diu ɖiu डीऊ
black pig dirim raa ɖirim raː डीरीम राऽ
leaf taich tɔc तौच
dew thun tʰun थून
scorpion dikiraseni dikiraseni दीकीरासेनी
mosquito nipho nipʰo नीफो
mushroom pata pata पाता
crow phatkaa pʰaʈka फाटका
frog phorube pʰorube फोरूबे
rope pharako pʰarako फाराको
green turtle belotauro beloʈɔrɔ बेलोटौरौ
grey pigeon mirit mirit मीरीत
rooster maucho mɔcɔ मौचौ
strewn leaves yephaay taich jepʰaːj tɛc येफाऽय तैच
bamboo rat rɛʈ रैट
tusked male pig ratairlauto ratɛrlɔto रातैरलौतो
smoke lep lep लेप
fire luro, wuro luro, wuro लूरो, वूरो
waist jewellery shirbele ʃirbele शीरबेले
snake shubi ʃubi शूबी
crocodile sarekateyo sarekatejo सारेकातेयो
White-bellied Sea-Eagle karatchom karaʈcom करटचोम
Pacific Golden Plover chelele cɛlele चैलेले
Oriental Honey Buzzard taulom-tut-bio ʈɔlom-tut-bio टौलोम-तूत-बीओ
Whimbrel chautot cɔʈoʈ चौटोट
  • Column in yellow denotes loanword derived from Hindi

Grammatical features[edit]

With respect to the Great Andamanese family, the use of proclitics in Great Andamanese language shows how the language family is unique in such a way that the body division markers that appear as proclitics pervade the entire grammatical system of the language, a fact not shared by any other known language of the world so far.[9][10]

Seven basic zones in the partonomy of the body and grammaticalisation process in PGA
Classes Partonomy of human body Body
division markers
Verbs Adjectives Adverbs
1 mouth and its semantic extension a= mouth-related activity, origin,
e.g. a=ɟire ‘abuse’, a=kopho ‘sprout’
mouth-related attributive quality of a person,
e.g. a=mu ‘mute’, a=tutlup ‘greedy’
deictic meaning of front or back, anteriority of an action,
e.g. a=karap ‘behind’, a=kaulu ‘prior to’
2 major external body parts ɛr= activity in which the front part of the body is involved.
e.g. er=luk ‘weigh’
attribute of size, external beauty,
e.g. er=buŋoi ‘beautiful’
deictic meaning of adjacency, uncontrollable actions/emotions,
e.g. er=betto:ʃo ‘adjacent to/near X’, er=achil ‘surprised’
3 extreme ends of the body like toes and fingernails oŋ= hand-related activity, action to do with extremities of body,
e.g. oŋ=cho ‘stitch’, oŋ=tuɟuro ‘trembling of hands’
attributes related to limbs,
e.g. oŋ=karacay ‘lame’, ‘handicapped’, oŋ=toplo ‘alone’
Indicating manner,
e.g. oŋ=kocil ‘fast’, ‘hurriedly’
4 bodily products and part-whole relationship ut= directional, away from the ego, experiential,
e.g. ut=cone ‘leave’, ut=ʈheʈhe-bom ‘be hungry’
attributive quality of an X after a part is taken out of it,
e.g. ut=lile ‘decay’, ut=lɔkho ‘bare’
emerging out of something, deictic meaning of ‘towards X’,
e.g. ot=le, ‘seaward’ ot=bo ‘backwards’
5 organs inside the body e=, ɛ= internalised action, when the effect of an action can be seen on the object, or experienced,
e.g. e=lɛco ‘suck’, ɛ=rino ‘tear’
inherent attribute of X,
e.g. e=sare ‘salty’, ɛ=bɛn ‘soft’
deictic meaning of ‘in the middle of X’
e.g. te=khil, e=kotra ‘inside’
6 parts designating round shape/sexual organs ara= action that involves side or middle portion of the body,
e.g. ara=ɖelo ‘be pregnant’
attribute of size, ‘time’ and belly-related,
e.g. ara=pheʈkhetɔ ‘big bellied’, ara=kaʈa ‘stout/dwarf’
deixis of immediate vertical or horizontal space,
e.g. ara=balo ‘behind X’, tara=tal ‘right under X’
7 parts for legs and related terms o= ~ ɔ= action which results in roundish object or in a definite result,
e.g. o=cɔrno ‘make nest’, o=beo ‘sting’
external attribute of an X, shape or structure,
e.g. o=baloŋ ‘round’, o=phelala ‘slippery’
temporal deixis relating to ‘sun rise’ or directional deixis,
e.g. o=ʈɔ: ‘day break’, o=kara ‘sunset’

Great Andamanese place names[edit]

Islands
Contemporary place name Present Great Andamanese place name
Andaman Islands Marakele
South Andaman Island Sorobul
Little Andaman Ilumu Tauro
Strait Island Khringkosho
Havelock Island (Swaraj Island) Thi Lar Siro
Interview Island Bilikhu Taraphong
Neill Island (Shaheed Island) Tebi Shiro
Baratang Island Boa
Bluff Island Lurua
Landfall Island Mauntenga
Places
Port Blair Laotara Nyo
Diglipur Thitaumul
Mayabunder Rait Phor

Sample text[edit]

The following is a sample text in Present Great Andamanese:

Present Great Andamanese text

Kuro-t'on-mika mom miritlaa, bilik laukoemat, peakar aatlo topchhike aat laiche lechhlin aa, kotik aa aukaukodaakchhine aatlo Karat-tatak-emin.

Present Great Andamanese in Devanagari

कूरोतोनमीका मोम मीरीतलाऽ, बीलीक लौकौएमात, पेआकार आतलो तोपछीके आत लैचे लेछलीन आ, कोतीक आ औकौकोडाऽकछीने आतलो कारातताऽताकेमीऽन।

Present Great Andamanese in the IPA

kurot̪onmikɑ mom mirit̪lɑː, bilik lɔkɔemɑt̪, peɑkɑr ɑt̪lo topcʰike ɑt lɑice lecʰlin ɑ, kot̪ik ɑ ɔkɔkodɑːkcʰine ɑt̪lo kɑrɑt̪t̪ɑːt̪ɑkemiːn.

Translation

Mr. Pigeon stole a firebrand at Kuro-t'on-mika, while God was sleeping. He gave the brand to the late Lech, who then made fires at Karat-tatak-emin.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jeru at Ethnologue (23rd ed., 2020)
  2. ^ a b Mixed Great Andamanese at Ethnologue (23rd ed., 2020)
  3. ^ A. N. Sharma (2003), Tribal Development in the Andaman Islands, page 75. Sarup & Sons, New Delhi.
  4. ^ Aka-Jeru at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015) Mixed Great Andamanese at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  5. ^ Anvita Abbi (2006), "Endangered Languages of the Andaman Islands", LINCOM Studies in Asian Linguistics, 64.) München
  6. ^ Anvita Abbi (2009), "The Unique Structure of the Present Great Andamanese: An Overview of the Grammar", VOGA(Vanishing Voices of the Great Andamanese)
  7. ^ Andamani Varnamala (PDF), Centre for Linguistics Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2008
  8. ^ "GA Lexicon". VOGA.
  9. ^ Anvita Abbi (2018), A sixth language family of India: Great Andamanese, its historical status and salient present-day features, UCT Press
  10. ^ Anvita Abbi (2011), Body divisions in Great Andamanese: Possessive classification, the semantics of inherency and grammaticalization, UJBPC

External links[edit]