LINGUIST List 29.3533

Thu Sep 13 2018

Diss: Sino-Tibetan; Language Documentation: Author: Muhammad Zakaria: ''A grammar of Hyow''

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Date: 11-Sep-2018
From: Muhammad Zakaria <>
Subject: A grammar of Hyow
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Institution: Nanyang Technological University
Program: Linguistics and Multilingual Studies
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2018

Author: Muhammad Zakaria

Dissertation Title: A grammar of Hyow

Dissertation URL:

Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Language Family(ies): Sino-Tibetan

Dissertation Director:
Alexander Robertson Coupe

Dissertation Abstract:

Hyow is an undocumented language, with about four thousand speakers living in the southeast of Bangladesh. This dissertation describes the linguistic features of this undocumented language. This dissertation consists of twelve chapters, a text, a Hyow-English dictionary, three appendices and references.

This is the first attempt of writing a grammar of the language. Out of many interesting linguistic features of Hyow, tone sandhi, verb stem variants and their functions, person hierarchy, middle voice, clausal nominalization and strategies of forming complex clauses are noteworthy. The findings of tone sandhi in Hyow will contribute to understand tone patterns of other undocumented Southern Chin languages. The discussion on stem variants based on their uses in different types of clauses will add to the study of stem alternations in Kuki-Chin languages. The effect of stem alternations on lexical tones might be useful for further study of tonal correspondences among different Kuki-Chin languages. Among the documented Southern Chin languages only Hyow and Asho (Otsuka 2015) show person hierarchy for argument indexations on verbs. This can be useful to determine the lower-level classifications of Kuki-Chin languages. Middle voice plays an important role in the grammar of Hyow. However, this topic has not been widely discussed in other Kuki-Chin languages. The extensive discussion of middle voice in this dissertation will contribute to future studies of middle voice in other Kuki-Chin languages. The use of clausal nominalization again demonstrates how significant it is in Tibeto-Burman languages. To sum up, this dissertation is expected to further the studies of Kuki-Chin languages in the future.

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