Language name: YANYUWA
UPSID number: 8347
Alternate name(s): ANYULA, YANYULA
Classification: Australian, Ungrouped
This language has 32 segments
Its Frequency index is 0.261363636 (average percentage of segments; 0.1: many very rare segments; 0.39: average; 0.7: many common segments)
The language has these sounds: p tD t t_ t. kJ k mp ntD nt nt_ nt. NkJ Nk m nD n n_ n. NJ N r.[ r lD l l_ l. j w I a U
Comment: Yanyuwa is spoken mainly at or near Borroloola, Northern Territory, Australia. The series of consonants described here as palatalized velars are called palato-velar by Kirton and Charlie (1978). They arose historically through coalescence of clusters of palato-alveolar and velar consonants. Almost all remaining clusters consist of a sequence of a coronal and a 'peripheral' (bilabial or velar), so an analysis of these as clusters would be defensible (Huttar and Kirton, 1981). The velar and palatalized velar series do not contrast between high front vowels. Stops are said to vary in voicing with a tendency for "voicing to be more frequent between vowels and at the onset of a stressed syllable in word-medial position" (Kirton 1967:18). However, a tape recording of one Yanyuwa speaker showed voiceless stops even in these positions. Kirton and Charlie (1978) note that for prenasalized stops in word-initial position "the nasal onset of the complex phoneme is voiceless in almost every occurrence". This is taken as an indication that the prenasalized stops are also basically voiceless. /a/ is the most common vowel; the sequence /aa/ is disyllabic and no other vowel sequences occur.
Source(s): Huttar, G.L., Kirton, J.F. 1981. Contrasts in Yanywa consonants. In A. Gonzalez and D. Thomas (eds.), Linguistics Across Continents: Studies in Honor of Richard S. Pittman. Summer Institute of Linguistics, Manila.
Kirton, J.F. 1967. Anyula phonology. Papers in Australian Linguistics No. 1, Pacific Linguistics, Series A, 10:15-28. Australian National University, Canberra.
Kirton, J.F., Charlie, B. 1978. Seven articulatory positions in Yanyuwa consonants. Papers in Australian Linguistics No. 11, Pacific Linguistics, Series A, 51:179-197.

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