Bola language (Austronesian)

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Native toPapua New Guinea
Native speakers
14,000 (2000 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3bnp

Bola, or Bakovi, is an Oceanic language of West New Britain in Papua New Guinea. The Harua (Xarua) dialect developed on a palm plantation.


Phonology of the Bola language:[2]

Consonant sounds
Labial Alveolar Velar
Nasal m n ŋ
Plosive p b t d k g
Fricative β (s) ɣ
Rhotic r
Lateral l

/t/ is realized as sounds /s, ʃ/ when only occurring in front of /i/. The voiced stops /b d ɡ/ can often sound prenasalized [ᵐb ⁿd ᵑɡ] among various speakers. /ɣ/ can be pronounced as a glottal fricative [h] among younger speakers.

Vowel sounds
Front Central Back
High i u
Mid ɛ ɔ
Low ɑ

/i/ before vowel sounds /ɑ ɛ ɔ u/ is pronounced as a glide sound [j].[3]


  1. ^ Bola at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015) (subscription required)
  2. ^ Wiebe, Brent (August 2004). "Bola (Bola-Bakovi) Language [BNP] East New Britain & West New Britain Province" (PDF). Organised Phonology Data.
  3. ^ van den Berg & Wiebe (2019)

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]