Date of Award

January 2020

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Linguistics

First Advisor

James S. Roberts

Abstract

This description of the phonology of Mbati/Isongo (C13) (mdn) of CAR is based on a word-list recorded by native Mbati speakers. A description of nominal and verbal morphology is included as a foundation for discussing morphophonemic processes. Only open syllables and consonant-glide clusters are allowed. Alveolar and velar plosives are affricated or palatalized before the high front vowel. Prenasalized consonants act as phonological units, rather than clusters. Mid-vowels within noun roots harmonize according to the feature [ATR]. [−ATR]-dominated vowel assimilation occurs within verb stems. Vowel hiatus is resolved by glide formation, diphthong formation, elision, and epenthesis, depending on the vowels and morphological boundary involved. Verbs exhibit productive Bantu verbal extensions. Mbati uses a suffix as an infinitive marker instead of a typical Bantu prefix. Nouns have a three-way reduced Bantu class system with limited concord markers. Mbati has a tone system of three levels with additional register shifting effects.

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