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Title: Tonal Melodies in the Kifuliiru Verbal System
Author(s): VAN OTTERLOO, Karen
Journal: Africana Linguistica
Volume: 20    Date: 2014   
Pages: 385-403
DOI: 10.2143/AL.20.0.3062079

Abstract :
Kifuliiru has three lexical classes of verbs: High, Low, and Toneless; and six basic grammatical tone patterns. The tonal melody in every verb form is a combination of its lexical tones, i.e. any lexical stem tone plus any H tone from a Causative or Passive morpheme, and its grammatical melody, which may have either one or two tones and is selected by the Tense/Aspect/Mood. Tone assignment is by modified edge in linking to the syllable. The lexical tone of the verb stem and the initial tone of the grammatical melody are left edge tones, and the H of Causative or Passive and any second tone of the grammatical melody are right edge tones. The linear sequence of tones in the combined melody is (LexicalLeft), MelodicLeft, (LexicalRight), (MelodicRight). A penultimate syllable, whether monomoraic or bimoraic, has two tonal nodes, while all other syllables have only one tonal node. Thus all contours are penultimate. Contours are often simplified by rule. The final vowel is reserved for a default L tone unless the verb is causative or passive, in which case the rightmost tone of the combined melody appears in final position. In two of the grammatical patterns, Meeussen’s rule applies within the verb stem.

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