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  • Siraya Reduplication1
  • K. Alexander Adelaar

The main patterns of reduplication in Siraya (West Formosa) include monosyllabic root reduplication, an inherent lexical property of certain wordbases, and disyllabic reduplication, which adds the notion of diffuseness (including plurality, variety, similarity) to nominal wordbases, and the notion of diffusenes (repetition of action, plurality of actants) or continuity (including state, process) to verbal wordbases. The same meanings are conveyed by rightward reduplication, which applies when the last three or four segments of a root are copied at the end (losing the final consonant if there is one). First-syllable reduplication basically forms cardinal numbers with nonhuman referents. Ca- reduplication is part of verbal morphosyntax indicating progressive aspect, generic aspect, or a state, but it also forms deverbal nouns; it is, moreover, used with ordinal numerals, and with cardinal numerals and other count words having a human referent. Contrary to the general pattern found in other Austronesian languages (Blust 1998), the meaning of Siraya nouns derived through Ca- reduplication is not restricted to that of instrument but also includes that of agent, abstract noun, undergoer, and (in combination with the suffix -an) location. Finally, pa- reduplication is a morphosyntactic device forming causative verbs.

1. Introduction.

Siraya, an extinct West-Formsoan language, has a large variety of reduplication patterns. It has many of these in common with other Formosan languages (cf. Blust 1998, Chang 1998). The following overall patterns can be distinguished formally alongside some less common patterns: monosyllabic-root reduplication, disyllabic-root reduplication, rightward reduplication, first-syllable reduplication, Ca- reduplication, pa- reduplication. These patterns are shown in underived as well derived words. Monosyllabic root reduplication and disyllabic root reduplication can each be divided into subpatterns on the basis of the phonemic structure of the wordbases with which they are found. In the following sections, an overview is given of all apparent patterns and subpatterns as well as of their respective functions and meanings. [End Page 33]


Siraya examples in this article are taken from the Siraya Gospel of St. Matthew (Gravius 1661, Campbell 1888) and, occasionally, from the Siraya Catechism (Gravius 1662). For the sake of philological soundness, out-of-context examples of verbs are sometimes given in the derived form in which they occur in the sources, although their meaning may be rendered into English with an infinitive or participle. Furthermore, for practical reasons, the English glundergoer-orientedness of some of these examples. Source places are given immediately after lexical examples, and after theoss does not translate the translation in the case of sample sentences. Source places in the gospel text are given between brackets by a roman numeral (indicating gospel chapter) followed by a semicolon and arabic numeral (indicating verse). Source places in the Catechism are given between brackets with a capital C followed by the page number of the 1662 printing; this page number is followed by a "v" if reference is made to a verso page. Angle brackets will be used for roots that only occur in derivations, as for example <tangi>, which does not occur by itself but is found in t-m-angi-tangi (ii:18) 'to cry' and tangi-tangi-ən (xiii:42) 'crying'. There is, or course, no way of telling whether these roots were really bound forms in spoken Siraya or whether they just happen not to occur underived in the existing corpus of Siraya data.2


The reader is referred to Adelaar (1997) for a grammatical description of Siraya. What follows here is a simple listing of special terms used in this publication. (a) The AFFECTIVE prefix ka- occurs with undergoer-oriented verbs including those expressing a sensation, feeling or emotion. (b) The agent-oriented prefix is M- and has two allomorphs: m-, which occurs before initial vowels, and -m-, which occurs after initial consonants. The allomorph m- also replaces initial p- in the transitive prefix pa- (which then becomes ma-). It also replaces p- in a number of lexical prefixes, such as pako-/paku- (+calling), paki- (+find), păta- (+talk), which become respectively mako-/maku-, maki-, and măta- through affixation of M-. (c) In Siraya complex-verb constructions, the first verb obtains all the marking; the...


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