A Grammar of Nuosu by Matthias Gerner

By Matthias Gerner

This is often the 1st smooth grammar of Nuosu written in English. Nuosu belongs to a bit identified element of Tibeto-Burman. The 2.5 Million ethnic Nuosu are a part of the Yi nationality and reside in Sichuan (China). This grammar informs Tibeto-Burman linguists, typologists, students of language touch and international beginners of Nuosu.

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By Matthias Gerner

This is often the 1st smooth grammar of Nuosu written in English. Nuosu belongs to a bit identified element of Tibeto-Burman. The 2.5 Million ethnic Nuosu are a part of the Yi nationality and reside in Sichuan (China). This grammar informs Tibeto-Burman linguists, typologists, students of language touch and international beginners of Nuosu.

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Liétard (1909, 1911) published a more detailed grammar on Axi. These were the sole Yi languages described by Western writers until 1990 when the linguist Bradley (1990) wrote a paper on the grammatical tone in Liángshān Nuosu. Björverud published a grammar of Lalo (Dàlĭ 大理) as her Ph. D. dissertation at Lund University in 1998. Fù Màojì’s Descriptive grammar of Lolo represents the sole available Nuosu grammar in English. This work was submitted in August 1950 as doctoral thesis at Cambridge University and reprinted in an issue of Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area in 1997.

14) a. SG Noun (D) Coverb=postposition (H) zha. ’ b. 1 nyip day gat qip. ’ In the same vein, predicates always follow noun phrases which they modify as arguments or as adjuncts. (15) a. ꇐꁈꀉꎓꇬꀮꄑ。 lu po ax rryr male name female name Argument (D) go PAT bu dex. ’ b. see Adjunct (D) ‘You should cut with the knife-edge facing down’ zhe. cut Verb (H) 18 Language background Manner adverbs (D), especially when built on the phrasal suffix -mu, occur left to the predicate, the head. (16) a. SG spending strength mu ADVL bot.

Nd [nd/nd] dd [d/d] d [t] t [t] ndi ‘contain’ ndie ‘skillful’ ndat ‘enough’ ddi ‘bad, rotten’ ddie ‘make’ ddat ‘accept’ dduo ‘climb’ ddop ‘word’ dde dde mu ‘often’ ddu ‘home’ ddur ‘exit’ di ‘single, alone’ die ‘layer’ da ‘put’ duo ‘hold in arms’ dop ‘point at’ dep ‘rise up’ dut ‘step on’ dur ‘thousand’ ti ‘mean, signify’ tie ‘nominalizer’ ta ‘earthern jar’ tuo ‘sharp, keen’ to ‘cut swiftly’ te ‘time’ tut ‘family’ tur ‘chop up’ ndo ‘drink’ ndu ‘dig’ ndur ‘shake grain’ The four phonation types are also fully contrastive for the velar point of articulation.

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