Mono language (Congo)

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Native toDemocratic Republic of the Congo
RegionNorthwestern corner of Congo (DRC)
Native speakers
(65,000 cited 1984 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3mnh
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters. For a guide to IPA symbols, see Help:IPA.

Mono is a language spoken by about 65,000 people[3] in the northwestern corner of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is one of the Banda languages, a subbranch of the Ubangian branch of the Niger–Congo languages. It has five dialects: Bili, Bubanda, Mpaka, Galaba, and Kaga.

Mono has 33 consonant phonemes, including three labial-velar stops (/k͡p/, /ɡ͡b/, and prenasalized /ᵑ͡ᵐɡ͡b/), an asymmetrical eight-vowel system, and a labiodental flap /ⱱ/ (allophonically a bilabial flap [ⱳ]) that contrasts with both /v/ and /w/. It is a tonal language.


Consonants in Mono: p, t, tʃ, k, kp, ʔ, b, d, dʒ, g, gb, ɓ, ɗ, mb, nd, ndʒ, ŋg, ŋmɡb, f, s, ʃ, h, v, z, ʒ, m, n, ɲ, ⱱ, r, l, j, w.

Vowels in Mono: i, e, a, o, u, ɨ, ə, ɔ.

Tones in Mono: high, low, medium[4]


  1. ^ Mono at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Mono (Democratic Republic of Congo)". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ Ethnologue report for Mono
  4. ^ Olson, Kenneth S. 2004
  • Kamanda-Kola, Roger. 2003. Phonologie et morpho-syntaxe du mono: Langue oubanguienne du Congo R.D. (LINCOM Studies in African Linguistics 60). Munich: LINCOM EUROPA.
  • Olson, Kenneth S. (2004), "Mono" (PDF), Journal of the International Phonetic Association, 34 (02): 233–238, doi:10.1017/S0025100304001744
  • Olson, Kenneth S. 2005. The phonology of Mono (SIL International and the University of Texas at Arlington Publications in Linguistics 140). Dallas: SIL & UTA.
  • Olson, Kenneth S. & Brian E. Schrag. 2000. 'An overview of Mono phonology'. In H. Ekkehard Wolff & Orin Gensler (eds.), Proceedings from the 2nd World Congress of African Linguistics, Leipzig 1997, 393–409. Cologne: Rüdiger Köppe.

External links[edit]

  • SIL article on new phonetic symbol for labiodental flap