Books: Lang Documentation/Australian Languages: Dixon (Ed), Ford
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Date: 23-Oct-2011 From: Ulrich Lueders <lincom.europat-online.de> Subject: A description of the Emmi language of the Northern Territory of Australia: Dixon (Ed), Ford E-mail this message to a friend
Title: A description of the Emmi language of the Northern Territory of Australia
Series Title: Outstanding grammars from Australia 08
Publisher: Lincom GmbH
Author: Lysbeth Julie Ford
Editor: RMW Dixon
Paperback: ISBN: 9783862881543 Pages: 465 Price: Europe EURO 74.80
Emmi, named after the word for 'what' in the language, is a highly endangered polysynthetic Australian language with only a handful of fluent speakers. A member of the Daly River sprach-bund of the Northern Territory, Emmi is a head-marking language with vestigial noun class marking, but a highly developed system of verb classifiers and ordered nominal and propositional enclitics. Emmi noun incorporation is lexical and syntactic, and, as in other languages of the region, lexically incorporated body-parts function as metaphors and classifiers for entities of similar shape to these body-parts. The syntax of Emmi simple and complex clauses involves serial constructions in which major intransitive verbs have been poly-grammaticised to provide aspectual information.
Ford has since worked on neighbouring related languages, also highly endangered, which have similar highly developed systems of verb classifiers, and clitics, but a more extensive system of noun classifiers. She has also worked extensively on traditional songs in Emmi, its closely related dialect Mendhe, and the related languages Marri Ammu, Marri Tjabin and Marri Ngarr, and compared the use of all these languages in wangga and lirrga song-texts.