Poula
Poumai
Native toManipur, Nagaland
EthnicityPoumai Naga
Native speakers
140,000 (2011)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3pmx
Glottologpoum1235

Poula is an Angami-Pochuri language that is predominantly spoken by the Poumai Naga people in Senapati district in Manipur and Phek district in Nagaland, India. The language of Chingjaroi is also closely related to Poula but is distinct. A descriptive grammar of Poula is available.[2]

Grammar

Phonology

The phonology of Poula lacks syllable codas and also disallows consonant clusters in onset position. There are 25 consonant phonemes in Poula.

Consonants

Consonants[3]
Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Plosive voiceless p t c k
voiced
aspirated b d g
Nasal plain m n ŋ
aspirated ŋ̊ʰ
Fricative voiceless s ɕ h
voiced ʑ
Affricate voiceless
voiced
Approximant ʋ j
Liquid rhotic ɾ
lateral l

Vowels

There are six vowel phonemes in Poula.

Front Central Back
High iy (u)
Mid e ə o
Low a

In Poula, the phoneme /ə/ is written with the grapheme 'ü' (now, many use it as 'ii') in Bible and Hymns which was devised by Bible Society of India. In addition Poula lacks high back round vowel [u] as a monophthong,[4] but [u] is present in nexus of diphthong; for example pou [pəu] `father'.

Tones

Poula is a tonal language, however tone is not currently marked in the orthography. There are four tonemes in Poula.[3]

Word Tone Gloss
/na˥/ High-falling 'baby'
/na˦/ Mid-Rising 'later'
/na˧/ Mid 'things'
/na˩/ Low 'paint'

Poula is an extremely innovative language–unlike Kuki-Chin languages–for having simple morphology.[5]

Morphology

Nouns and verbs are the two content word classes. There are no ‘adjective’ and ‘adverbs’ words classes, however nominalized verbs may modify nouns and non-finite converbial verbs may modify verbs. There several functional words found.[6]

References

  1. ^ Poula at Ethnologue (25th ed., 2022) Closed access icon
  2. ^ Veikho, Sahiinii Lemaina (2019). "A Grammar of Poumai Naga". University of Bern, Switzerland: PhD Dissertation.
  3. ^ a b Veikho, Sahiinii Lemaina; Khyriem, Barika (2015). "Poula phonetics and phonology: An initial overview". North East Indian Linguistics. 7: 47–62.
  4. ^ Veikho, Sahiinii Lemaina; Sarmah, Priyankoo (2018). "Vowels and tones in Poula". Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area. 41 (1): 22–45. doi:10.1075/ltba.16022.lem. S2CID 69460833.
  5. ^ Veikho, Sahiinii Lemaina (2019). "A Grammar of Poumai Naga". University of Bern, Switzerland: PhD Dissertation.
  6. ^ Veikho, Sahiinii Lemaina (2019). "A Grammar of Poumai Naga". University of Bern, Switzerland: PhD Dissertation.