LINGUIST List 32.730

Sat Feb 27 2021

Books: A grammar of Nchane: Boutwell

Editor for this issue: Billy Dickson <>

Date: 25-Feb-2021
From: Janacy van Duijn Genet <>
Subject: A grammar of Nchane: Boutwell
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Title: A grammar of Nchane
Subtitle: A Bantoid (Beboid) language of Cameroon
Series Title: LOT Dissertation Series
Published: 2020
Publisher: Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke (LOT)

Book URL:

Author: Richard Boutwell
Paperback: ISBN: 9789460933578 Pages: 417 Price: Europe EURO 40

A grammar of Nchane is the first comprehensive account of this Beboid language spoken primarily in the Northwest Region of Cameroon. A functional approach is used to describe various aspects of the grammar, including the phonology, nouns and noun phrases, verbs, and different clause types. The analyses are formed utilizing data from a 1,600 word lexicon, elicited materials, and numerous texts, one of which is provided in the final chapter in interlinearized form.

Features of particular interest include the presence of a fricative vowel, a tone system comprising three level tones and four contour tones, a robust noun class system including two locative noun classes, compound pronouns, and a set of anaphoric demonstratives which encode speaker attitude. The chapter on clause structure offers evidence illustrating the importance of semantic roles and information structure to constituent alignment. Another important chapter details the information structure of the language, most notably describing various strategies for topic and focus marking.

This volume makes a significant contribution to the relatively small body of literature describing the Beboid languages and provides unique data that comparativists will find invaluable. Resarchers with an interest in Bantoid languages will especially find this work a useful resource, as well as African linguistic typologists.

Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Language Family(ies): Beboid

Written In: English (eng)

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Page Updated: 27-Feb-2021