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Title: Aspects of Lengo Grammar
Authors: Unger, Paul
Keywords: Austronesian Languages
Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian Languages
Lengo - Grammar
Issue Date: 2008
Publisher: Trinity Western University
Abstract: Lengo (language code [lgr]), an Austronesian Oceanic language, is a member of the Gela branch of the Southeast Solomonic subgroup. Lengo is spoken by some 14,000 people of north and east-central Guadalcanal province, Solomon Islands. While there are brief references to Lengo in the literature, there is no comprehensive treatment of the grammar. This thesis begins to fill the void of studies of Lengo in particular and of Guadalcanal languages in general. This thesis presents an overview of some of the more readily evident features of Lengo grammar. Following a section presenting the phonology of Lengo, there are sections covering word, phrase, clause, and sentence syntax. Items of particular interest in this grammar are the case of vowel raising and harmony in certain third person singular inalienably possessed nouns, a distinct set of cardinal numerals for “custom” (Pijin kastom) stories, tense / aspect / mood prefixes which join to subject reference pronouns (including one for a mood described as 'apprehensive'), processes by which verbs derive from nouns and nouns derive from verbs, a particle analysed as a 'realis locative', and a discussion of Lengo's various serial verb constructions. Along with a presentation of Lengo's geographic and familial situation in the Southeast Solomonic language family and a brief discussion of orthography issues as appendices, a selection of texts from my fieldwork in Guadalcanal (c. 2002-2006) are included. Four of those included here were recorded and transcribed with the help of Lengo speakers. The fifth was given to me in hand-written form.
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