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A Carib Grammar and Dictionary

This dissertation contains a detailed description of the Carib language, including the most extensive dictionary of the language to date. This knowledge is based on work from earlier sources and field work which was carried out by the author over a ten-year period, particularly in Galibi, a Carib village in the east of Surinam.

Henk Courtz
30 January 2008
Full text in Leiden University Repository

The Carib language is spoken by approximately 7000 people scattered over Venezuela, Guyana, Surinam, French Guyana and Brazil. This dissertation distinguishes four dialects: Venezuelan Carib, Guyanese Carib, west-Surinamese Carib and east-Surinamese Carib, which also includes French-Guyanese and Brazilian Carib.

Some interesting points that are included in the description are (a) a new analysis of the phonology, with details on stress and stress patterns, (b) new explanations of many morphological details, including a verb form that so far had not been described, (c) an overview of five syntactic word units, (d) dozens of pages of Carib text, with an interlinear morphological analysis and translation, and (e) a dictionary containing information about over 6500 words.

Both the grammar and the dictionary present information regarding the four dialects, and a new orthography is presented that can be applied to all dialects. 

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