Siar

Authored by: Malcolm Ross

The Oceanic Languages

Print publication date:  December  2001
Online publication date:  March  2013

Print ISBN: 9780700711284
eBook ISBN: 9780203820384
Adobe ISBN: 9781136749858

10.4324/9780203820384.ch19

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Abstract

The 2500 or so speakers of Siar live in coastal villages near the southern tip of New Ireland and on the offshore island of Lambom. ‘Siar’ is the name of a village on the east coast of New Ireland, and it is reported that at least some speakers from other villages prefer the name ‘Lak’, which refers to the area. The language belongs to the South New Ireland/Northwest Solomonic linkage of the Meso-Melanesian cluster. This sketch is based largely on my fieldnotes, derived from information given by Beka Aisak of Lambom Island and Ben Yona of Bakok village. Reference was also made to Erdman (1991) and Erdman and Erdman (1992), and Erdman and Goring (n.d.), whose data are from Lambom Island. I am also indebted to Karen Rowe for supplementary information from Lambom. Siar is striking for its unusual gender marking and noun phrase structures.

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