Ok languages

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Ok
Geographic
distribution
New Guinea
Linguistic classificationTrans–New Guinea
Proto-languageProto-Ok
Glottologokok1235
Ok languages.svg
Map: The Oksapmin languages of New Guinea
  The Oksapmin languages
  Other Trans–New Guinea languages
  Other Papuan languages
  Austronesian languages
  Uninhabited

The Ok languages are a family of about a dozen related Trans–New Guinea languages spoken in a contiguous area of eastern Irian Jaya and western Papua New Guinea. The most numerous language is Ngalum, with some 20,000 speakers; the best known is probably Telefol.

The Ok languages have dyadic kinship terms.[2]

History of classification[edit]

The Ok languages are clearly related. Alan Healey identified them as a family in 1962. He later noted connections with the Asmat languages and Awyu–Dumut families (Healey 1970).

Voorhoeve developed this into a Central and South New Guinea (CSNG) proposal. As part of CSNG, the Ok languages form part of the original proposal for Trans–New Guinea, a position tentatively maintained by Malcolm Ross, though reduced nearly to Healey's original conception. Ross states that he cannot tell if the similarities in CSNG are shared innovations or retentions from proto-TNG. Voorhoeve argues specifically for an Awyu–Ok relationship, and Foley believes that these two families may be closest to Asmat among the TNG languages.

Loughnane and Fedden (2011)[3] claim to have demonstrated that the erstwhile TNG isolate Oksapmin is related to the Ok family. However, this has not been generally accepted because loans from Mountain Ok have not been accounted for.

Van den Heuvel & Fedden (2014) argue that Greater Awyu and Greater Ok are not genetically related, but that their similarities are due to intensive contact.[4]

Languages[edit]

The languages are:

Ok

Reconstruction[edit]

Proto-Ok
Reconstruction ofOk languages
Reconstructed
ancestors

Phonology[edit]

The following are consonants of Proto-Ok:[5]

Consonants
*m *n
*p *t *s *k *kʷ
*mb *nd *ndz *ŋɡ *ŋɡʷ
*w *j

Vowels may be /*i: *ʉ *u: *e *a *o/, but this reconstruction may be biased toward Telefol.

Pronouns[edit]

Healey & Ross reconstruct the pronouns of proto-Ok are as follows:[citation needed]

m.sg f.sg pl
1 *na- *nu[b], *ni[b]
2 *ka-b- *ku-b- *ki[b]
3 *ya *yu *[y]i

Usher (2020) reconstructs the independent pronouns as,[5]

m.sg f.sg pl
1ex *ne *nu
1in *nu-p
2 *ke-p *ku-p *ki-p
3 *e *u *i [3pl.in *i-p]

and the subject suffixes as,

m.sg f.sg pl
1 *-i *-up
2 *-ep *-ip
3 *-e/*-o *-u

Evolution[edit]

Proto-Mountain Ok reflexes of proto-Trans-New Guinea (pTNG) etyma, as quoted by Pawley & Hammarström (2018) from Healey (1964):[6][7]

  • *beːn ‘arm’ < *mbena
  • *mburuŋ ‘fingernail’ < *mb(i,u)t(i,u)C
  • *katuun ‘knee’ < *(ng,k)atVk
  • *maŋkat ‘mouth’ < *maŋgat[a]
  • *gitak ‘neck’ < *k(a,e)ndak
  • *kum ‘side of neck’ < *kuma(n,ŋ)
  • *mutuum ‘nose’ < *mundu
  • *falaŋ ‘tongue’ < *mbilaŋ
  • *kaliim ‘moon’ < *kal(a,i)m

Lexicon[edit]

Usher (2020)[edit]

Some lexical reconstructions by Usher (2020) are:[5]

gloss Proto-Ok Proto-West Ok Ngalum Proto-Central Ok Proto-Lowland Ok Proto-Mountain Ok
head *ambo[t] *amb[o/u][t] *ambo *ŋgambɔːm
hair/feather *kam[y][ː]R *kamu kamil *kep *kami ? *karíːm (metathesis)
ear *kindoːŋg *kireŋg siroŋ *kiroŋg *kende *kìroːŋ
eye *kiː[n/nd][i] *k[i]ri sir *kit *kin(-jop) *kìːn
nose *mitoR *mete misol *m[i]t[o] *mitu *mít
tooth *niːŋgiR niŋil *niŋgi *niŋgi *níːŋg
tongue *poːŋg; *pir[a/o]ŋg *[p]iraŋg aploŋ *poŋg *poŋg *póːŋg; *piráŋg
foot/leg *j[aː/oː]n *jan jon *jon *jon *jàːn
blood/red *r[aː/eː]m lam *jam *rèːm
bone *kundo[ː]R *kuro kulol *koro *kondo *kún
skin *kaːnd *kat kal *kat *kar *kàːr
breast *muːk *muk muk *muk *muk *múːk
louse *kuwimb *k[uwi]p sip *kuwip *kuwim *kìm
dog *ano[ː]n *anan anon *anon *anon *majaːn
pig *kowaŋg *kuwoŋg kaŋ *koŋg *kowaŋg *k[àː/òː]ŋg
bird *n[a/o][ː]r[t] *no[r]t nal *noe *on *awɔːn
egg *windin *win wirin *wirin *windi *wín
tree/fire *andz *a a *a *ar (? *andz) *às
man *ka-tup
woman *wVnVŋg wanaŋ *kur 'woman/wife' *w[o]noŋg *wàn[é/á]ŋg
sun *at[aː/oː]n *atan aton *at[a/o]n *aton *átàːn
moon *wakor *ukot ukol *ukoe *w[o]kor *wàkár
water *oːk *ok ok *ok *ok *òːk
fire/spark *asi[n/ŋg] *asin asiŋg *asi[n/ŋg] *awop *weⁱŋg 'fire'
stone *tuːm *tum tum *tum *tum *túːm
path *[nd/j][y]jip *ɾeⁱp
name *[a]niŋg[o]R; *wini *iniŋg niŋil *wini *[a]niŋgo *wín
eat *en- 'eat/drink' *ane- *wan 'eat/drink'
one *muwim 'one/all' *mowim
two *pajop, *[p]aɾop *asʉ; *aɾe̞ːp

Loughnane and Fedden (2011)[edit]

Proto-Ok-Oksapmin reconstructions from Loughnane and Fedden (2011):[3]

gloss proto-Ok-Oksapmin
appetizer *imin
arrow type *(w)Vn; *xanaat
ashes *kip
ask *daxa
at (place) *kal
and, with *soo
bandicoot variety *kajaal
bat variety *jVwVm
be, stay *p(iː); *(i)n
bird-of-paradise *xoloom
bird variety *aleem; *ilnem
blood *xeim
blunt (of e.g. knife) *fiim
break, dislocate (bone) *doxo
burn / light fire *xVl
casuarina tree *dVtVp
chest (bone) *tVVb
cockroach *tanoom
cold *giil
collar bone *kʷiŋ
crumbs *bVVl
cucumber *kimVd
cut (hair), shave (hair) *pida-
dirty (of water) *miim
do / make *xV-
dog *mVjaan
domestic pig *kVŋ
down, below *daak
dry *xV(V)x
eagle, eagle variety *boxVl
emphatic pronoun marker *-xVp
enemy *maxaw
enough *kii
excrement *Vl
eye *kiin
fern *abal
fish *aniiŋ
frog variety *siilsiil
fruit *dVm
garden *(i)laŋ
greedy, selfish *ilek
headman, leader *kVmoxVm
heart *bVpVl
heavy *iluum
hornbill *xawel
house post *(V)bVk
husk (of nut) *(w)VVm
in, hole *tem
itchy *abaalabaal
kidney *gV(V)l(V)(p)
knee *katVVn
kookaburra *k(V)lVx
light (weight) *fVVŋ
little finger *xatxat
magic *kusem
molar / tooth *aga(k)
moon *kajoop
mosquito *gimgim
name *win
nasal mucus *iin
neck, throat *gʷel
needle *sVl
nettle variety *waan
nose *(mu)duum
no! *bV(V)s(V)
old *pVsel
pancreas *kʷVVn
part of floor *dixim
penis *eit
point, tip *puut
poor *bVlVp
possum variety *sopim
pregnant *gVpVn
pronged bird arrow *geim
pus *isax
rain shower *sox
roundworm *kasen
salt (traded from Oksapmin) *eip
same as, like *tap
seedling / plant / container *san
sharp *atVl
fed up with *gaal
sit with feet and legs together *goptV(V)
small mammal *nVVg
snake / snake variety *inap
sorcery *kimon
spark *tVtup
squash *sof(l)it; *sVko
story *saŋ
sugarcane *kʷeit
sun *ataan
sweet, tasty *xabaal
taboo *awem
temporary *(ka)kuun
thin *daŋ
tobacco *suux
tongue *fV(lV)ŋ
top / bottom of taro *dVm
trap *abil
self, reflexive *xol
urine *imaan
vein *mamel
vomit *usaan
warm *mVmVn
wasp *VVm
white cockatoo *nama
wild pig *saamVVn
wind *inim
yellow *xop; *kitax
child *mVVn
father.1POSS1 *at(umon)
father.3POSS *VVlap
in-law.1POSS *baad
man's sister *bVVp
uncle.1POSS *mV(V)m(ein)
younger brother *VnVVŋ
husband and wife *agam
mother and children *Vbdil

Further reading[edit]

  • Proto-Ok-Oksapmin. TransNewGuinea.org. From Loughnane, R. & Fedden, S. 2011. Is Oksapmin Ok?—A Study of the Genetic Relationship between Oksapmin and the Ok Languages. Australian Journal of Linguistics 31:1, 1-42.

References[edit]

Citations
  1. ^ New Guinea World, Digul River – Ok
  2. ^ The Oksapmin Kinship System Archived 2009-09-20 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved May 21, 2009.
  3. ^ a b Loughnane, Robyn; Fedden, Sebastian (2011). "Is Oksapmin Ok?—A Study of the Genetic Relationship between Oksapmin and the Ok Languages" (PDF). Australian Journal of Linguistics. 31 (1): 1–42. doi:10.1080/07268602.2011.533635.
  4. ^ van den Heuvel, Wilco; Fedden, Sebastian (2014). "Greater Awyu and Greater Ok: Inheritance or Contact?". Oceanic Linguistics. 53 (1): 1–36. doi:10.1353/ol.2014.0008. JSTOR 43286368.
  5. ^ a b c NewGuineaWorld, Ok
  6. ^ Pawley, Andrew; Hammarström, Harald (2018). "The Trans New Guinea family". In Palmer, Bill (ed.). The Languages and Linguistics of the New Guinea Area: A Comprehensive Guide. The World of Linguistics. 4. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. pp. 21–196. ISBN 978-3-11-028642-7.
  7. ^ Healey, Alan (1964). The Ok language family in New Guinea (PhD thesis). Australian National University. doi:10.25911/5d76387c2d8aa. hdl:1885/10871.
Sources
  • Ross, Malcolm (2005). "Pronouns as a preliminary diagnostic for grouping Papuan languages". In Andrew Pawley; Robert Attenborough; Robin Hide; Jack Golson (eds.). Papuan pasts: cultural, linguistic and biological histories of Papuan-speaking peoples. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics. pp. 15–66. ISBN 0858835622. OCLC 67292782.

External links[edit]