LINGUIST List 13.1879

Tue Jul 9 2002

Books: Language Description: Rotuman, M.Vamarasi

Editor for this issue: Dina Kapetangianni <>

Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.


  1. LINCOM EUROPA, Austronesian linguistics: Rotuman by Marit Vamarasi

Message 1: Austronesian linguistics: Rotuman by Marit Vamarasi

Date: Mon, 08 Jul 2002 15:59:29 +0200
Subject: Austronesian linguistics: Rotuman by Marit Vamarasi


Marit Vamarasi 
Northeastern Illinois University 

The Rotuman language is spoken by residents of the island of Rotuma,
which lies 465 kilometers northwest of Viti Levu, Fiji, by Rotumans
who live on Fiji's main islands, as well as by Rotumans who reside
overseas. There are approximately 9,000 speakers in all.

Rotuman is not closely related to any other language. It is classified
as a member of the Central-Eastern Oceanic subgroup, along with Fijian
and the Polynesian languages, within the Austronesian language
family. Rotuman has some unique features. The most notable is the fact
that all lexical words have two forms, called "complete" and
"incomplete" or "long" and "short", which are used in certain
syntactico-semantic contexts. The incomplete is derived from the
complete by one of four processes: metathesis, umlauting, vowel
deletion, and diphthongization.

These processes all serve to shorten a word by one mora, and, in most
cases, cause the word to end in a consonant, a feature which is
unusual for an Oceanic language. These processes also produce several
vowels in addition to the usual five of other Oceanic languages.

Most of the significant work on the Rotuman language was done by
Maxwell Churchward in the 1930's. This is the first comprehensive
study of the language to be done in 60 years.

ISBN 3 89586 303 3 
 Languages of the World/Materials 
 60pp. USD 32 / EUR 32/ � 19.90. 

Free copies of LINCOM'S new catalogue "project line 12" are now
available from

A Students' and course discount of 40% is offered to the above

Ordering information for individuals: Please give us your creditcard
no. / expiry date. Prices in this information include shipment
worldwide by airmail. A standing order for this series is available
with special discounts offered to individual subscribers.

NEW: LINCOM electronic n.e.w.s.l.e.t.t.e.r. Monthly up-dates. 
Go to

LINCOM EUROPA, Freibadstr. 3, D-81543 Muenchen, Germany;
FAX +49 89 62269404.
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue


----------------- Major Supporters ----------------



Academic Press



Arnold Publishers



Athelstan Publications



Blackwell Publishers




Cambridge University Press



Cascadilla Press




Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd




CSLI Publications




Distribution Fides



Elsevier Science Ltd.



John Benjamins����




Kluwer Academic Publishers




Lernout & Hauspie



Lincom Europa



MIT Press




Mouton de Gruyter




Multilingual Matters





Oxford UP



Pearson Education











Summer Institute of Linguistics





---------Other Supporting Publishers-------------


Anthropological Linguistics


Bedford/St. Martin's


Finno-Ugrian Society


Graduate Linguistic Students' Assoc., Umass


International Pragmatics Assoc.


Kingston Press Ltd.


Linguistic Assoc. of Finland


Linguistic Society of Southern Africa (LSSA)


MIT Working Publishers in Linguistics


Pacific Linguistics


Pacini Editore Spa


Utrecht Institute of Linguistics


Virittaja Aikakauslehti


Thursday, January 17, 2002