LINGUIST List 21.3333

Wed Aug 18 2010

Books: Language Documentation: Kruspe

Editor for this issue: Maria Moreno-Rollins <>

        1.    Daniel Davies, A Grammar of Semelai: Kruspe

Message 1: A Grammar of Semelai: Kruspe
Date: 11-Aug-2010
From: Daniel Davies <>
Subject: A Grammar of Semelai: Kruspe
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Title: A Grammar of Semelai Published: 2010 Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Book URL:

Author: Nicole Kruspe Paperback: ISBN: 9780521144995 Pages: 519 Price: U.K. £ 35.00

New Edition

Semelai is a previously undescribed and endangered Aslian (Mon-Khmer)language of the Malay Peninsula. This book - the first in-depth descriptionof an Aslian language - provides a comprehensive reference grammar ofSemelai. Semelai intertwines two types of morphological system: aconcatenative system of prefixes, suffixes and a circumfix - acquiredthrough extended contact with Malay - and a nonconcatenative system ofprefixes and infixes (including infix reduplication), inherited fromMon-Khmer. There are distinctive word classes - Nominals, Verbs andExpressives - the latter iconic utterances which simultaneously provideinformation about the predicate and its arguments. Semelai has manyderivational processes which change word class or affect transitivity, andit combines both head-marking and dependent-marking profiles. It also has arich phonemic system of 20 vowels and 32 consonants. Nicole Kruspe'sdiscussion is complemented with a generous number of illustrative examplesand texts, creating a reference work that will be welcomed bydescriptivists and typologists alike.

- Comprehensive reference grammar of a previously undescribed and currentlyendangered language- The first reference grammar of a language from the Asian branch of Mon-Khmer- Provides extensive data on typologically unusual morphological processesof reduplication, including infix reduplication


1. Semelai;2. Phonology and phonotactics;3. Morphology;4. Word classes;5. The verb;6. Pronouns: personal, ignorative, and demonstrative;7. The noun phrase;8. Prepositions and the prepositional phrase;9. Grammatical relations, constituent order and coding strategies;10. Basic clauses;11. Complex clauses;12. Expressives;13. The quotative marker, interjections and discourse clitics;14. Texts.

Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Subject Language(s): Semelai (sza)
Written In: English (eng )

See this book announcement on our website:

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Cambridge Scholars Publishing

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Page Updated: 18-Aug-2010