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date: 02 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Baale is a Surmic language spoken in the border area between Ethiopia and South Sudan. Whereas genetically it is closely related to Surmic languages farther towards the west (in South Sudan), it has converged towards more distantly related Surmic languages spoken farther towards the east, in Ethiopia, as a result of intensive language contact. This chapter presents a grammatical outline of Baale, and shows how contact phenomena affected the phonological, morphosyntactic, and semantic structure of this Nilo-Saharan language. In addition, the chapter presents prototypical features of a Surmic language, such as the tripartite number-marking system, case, and the distinction between conjoint and disjoint verb forms.

Keywords: Surmic, Nilo-Saharan, Ethiopia, South Sudan, language contact

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