Rennellese Sign Language
|Rennellese Sign Language|
|Native to||Solomon Islands|
none (home sign)
Rennellese Sign Language is an extinct form of home sign documented from Rennell Island in 1974. It was developed about 1915 by a deaf person named Kagobai and used by his hearing family and friends, but apparently died with him; he was the only deaf person on the island, and there never was an established, self-replicating community of signers. Accordingly, in January 2017 its ISO 639-3 code [rsi] was retired.
Wittmann (1991) proposed that RSL was a language isolate (a 'prototype' sign language), though one developed through stimulus diffusion from an existing sign language. However, his classification presupposes that it was a full language, which is almost certainly not the case, and Kuschel (the only source of information about this communication system) cites no evidence to suggest that there was any contact with any sign language.
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Rennellese Sign Language". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
- Kuschel, Rolf (1974). A Lexicon of Signs from a Polynesian Outliner Island: A Description of 217 Signs as Developed and Used by Kagobai, the Only Deaf-Mute of Rennell Island (PDF). København: Københavns Universitet. pp. 187 pages. ISBN 9788750015062. Retrieved 2016-01-22.
- ISO 639-3 Registration Authority. "Change request documentation for: 2016-002". ISO 639-3. SIL International. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
- Wittmann, Henri (1991). "Classification linguistique des langues signées non vocalement." Revue québécoise de linguistique théorique et appliquée 10:1.215–88.