|Region||Tor Atas district, Sarmi Regency|
|(1,200 cited 1994)|
Berik is a Papuan language spoken in eastern Papua. Speakers are located in four village groups on the Tor river towards the northern coast of Indonesian-controlled Irian Jaya. US linguist John McWhorter cited Berik as an example of a language which puts concepts "together in ways more fascinatingly different from English than most of us are aware". Illustrating this, in the phrase Kitobana (meaning "[he] gives three large objects to a male in the sunlight"), affixes indicating time of day, object number, object size, and gender of recipient are added to the verb.
|Plosive and affricate||p [p]||b [b]||t [t]||d [d]||j [d͡ʑ]||k [k]||g [ɡ]|
|Fricative||f [f]||s [s]|
|Nasal||m [m]||n [n]||ng [ŋ]|
|Approximant||l [l]||y [j]||w [w]|
Berik has the common six vowel system (/a/, /e/, /i/, /o/, and /u/ plus /ə/).
- Angtaneʻ bosna Usafe je gatas tarnap ge nuin. Tesa ga belim taban, ga jes talebowel.
- "There was once a person named Usafe who lived near the sago acreages. Whenever he finished cutting down a sago tree, he pounded it"
- Berik at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Berik". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
- Matthews, "Berik Literacy Program", p. 109
- McWhorter, "No Tears for Dead Tongues"
- "Difficult languages--Tongue twisters--In search of the world’s hardest language", Economist, New York,Dec 17th 2009.
- John McWhorter,"No Tears For Dead Tongues", Forbes,2/21/2008 @ 6:00PM.
- Westrum, "A Grammatical Sketch of Berik," p. 137
- Taken from Jones, "In Pursuit of Discourse Particles", p. 130
- Jones, Linda K. (1992), "In Pursuit of Discourse Particles", in Hwang, Shin Ja J.; Merrifield, William R., Language in context: Essays for Robert E. Longacre (PDF), Summer Institute of Linguistics and the University of Texas at Arlington Publications in Linguistics, 107, Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics and the University of Texas at Arlington, pp. 127&ndash, 36, archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-10-16
- Matthews, Delle P. (1990), "The Berik Literacy Program: From Illiteracy to National Language Proficiency", Irian: Bulletin of Irian Jaya, 18: 109–24
- McWhorter, John (21 March 2008), "No Tears for Dead Tongues", Forbes, retrieved 2011-05-09
- Westrum, Peter N. (1988), "A Grammatical Sketch of Berik", Irian: Bulletin of Irian Jaya, 16: 137
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