By Elizabeth Pearce
This booklet describes the Unua language of Malakula, Vanuatu. The island of Malakula is understood to have, or to have had, a complete of approximately forty detailed languages of which fewer than part were defined. The seven-hundred or so audio system of Unua also are fluent audio system of Bislama and the domain names of use for Unua have gotten extra constrained. Unua is therefore endangered and the documentation of the language in its current shape is especially well timed.
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Extra info for A Grammar of Unua
The list following gives the codes, names of speakers, their gender, indications as to their age, and their village affiliations. 3. au) under the inventory identification: AC2-VUNU103-107. xx: ‘xx’ is a page number from AC-VUNU105/107 Trud, Luke xx:xx: ‘xx:xx’ is chapter and verse from a portion of the Gospel of Luke (‘The Prodigal Son’ story) 4. Unua religious texts The Unua versions of books of the New Testament translated by Kalangis Bembe are identified with ‘xx:xx’ chapter and verse indications: John: The Gospel of John Bembe (2009) Luke: The Gospel of Luke Bembe (2007) Mark: The Gospel of Mark Bembe (2005) Matt: The Gospel of Matthew Bembe (2006) Accompanying Bislama versions for New Testament texts are from: Christian Council of Vanuatu (1997).
Although Unua is a coastal settlement, it is the land, rather than the sea, that is the most important source of food. Vegetable foods, especially root vegetables, are cultivated in family-owned gardens which also provide many fruits and nuts, along with the variety of tree and plant products used in the construction and embellishment of houses. There are also chickens and pigs, some goats and, in one area, some farmed cattle. There is too some hunting of wild cattle and pigs in the hills beyond the immediate settlement area.
2. Vowels Young speakers of Unua have five contrasting vowel sounds and some older speakers produce a further three vowels. All eight vowels are shown in Table 2-2 where the additional vowels produced by the older speakers are given in parentheses. 2). 2. Orthographic symbols The system of orthographic symbols which is given in Table 2-3 is based on a draft proposal written originally in 2004 and then developed in consultation with the Unua community (subsequently revised as Pearce 2005). Table 2-3: Unua spelling system The inclusion of the older speaker variants in the spelling system for consonants is an acknowledgment of the fact that the relevant distinctions are produced (variously) in spelling forms written by older speakers who control the traditional spelling system.
A Grammar of Unua by Elizabeth Pearce