Uab Meto
Uab Metô
Native toIndonesia, East Timor
RegionWest Timor, Oecusse
Native speakers
800,000 (2009–2011)[1]
Official status
Recognised minority
language in
Language codes
ISO 639-3Either:
aoz – Uab Meto
bkx – Baikeno
ELPUab Meto
Map of the Meto language cluster[3]

Uab Meto or Dawan is an Austronesian language spoken by Atoni people of West Timor. The language has a variant spoken in the East Timorese exclave of Oecussi-Ambeno, called Baikenu. Baikenu uses words derived from Portuguese, for example, obrigadu for 'thank you', instead of the Indonesian terima kasih.[4]


Dawan has the following consonants and vowels:[5]

Consonant sounds
Labial Alveolar Velar Glottal
Plosive voiceless p t k ʔ
voiced b
Nasal m n
Fricative f s h
Lateral l

Voiceless plosives [p t k] can have unreleased allophones [p̚ k̚] in word-final position. A phonemic /r/ can be heard in place of /l/ among dialects.[6]

Vowel sounds
Front Back
High i u
Mid e o
ɛ ɔ
Low a


A wordlist of 200 basic vocabulary items is available at the Austronesian Basic Vocabulary Database,[7] with data provided by Robert Blust and from Edwards (2016).[8]

Basic Uab Meto vocabulary
Uab Meto English
Pah (polite), Tua (polite), Hao (normal), He’ (informal), Ya (normal) Yes
Kaha’, Kahfa’ No
Nek seun banit (in West Timor) Thank you
Obrigadu (in East Timor) Thank you
Nek seunbanit namfau/´naek’, Terimakasih ‘nanaek (in West Timor) Thank you very much
Obrigadu namfau’ (in East Timor) Thank you very much
Sama-sama, leko, naleok You are welcome
Neu’ Please
Maaf, permisi, parmis Excuse me
Halo, Tabe Hello
Tkoenok tem pa´ Welcome, please come in
Tkoenok pa´ (to say good bye to one who leaves) Good bye
Selamat tinggal (said to one staying) Good bye
Selamat Jalan (said to one leaving) Good bye


Uab Meto English
Nol, Luman Zero
Mese' One
Nua Two
Teun Three
Haa Four
Niim Five
Nee Six
Hiut Seven
Faun, Faon Eight
Sio Nine
Bo'-, Bo'es Ten
Bo'es-am-mese' Eleven
Bo'es-am-nua Twelve
Bo'es-am-teun Thirteen
Bo'es-am-haa Fourteen
Bo'es-am-niim Fifteen
Bo'es-am-nee Sixteen
Bo'es-am-hiut Seventeen
Bo'es-am-faun Eighteen
Bo'es-am-sio Nineteen
Bo'nua Twenty
Bo'nua-m-mese' Twenty-one
Bo'teun Thirty
Bo'haa Forty
Bo'niim Fifty
Bo'nee Sixty
Bo'hiut Seventy
Bo'faun Eighty
Bo'sio Ninety
Natun mese', Nautnes One hundred
Nifun mese', Niufnes One thousand
Juta mese', Juta es, Juutes One million

See also


  1. ^ Uab Meto at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015) (subscription required)
    Baikeno at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015) (subscription required)
  2. ^ Endangered Languages Project data for Baikeno.
  3. ^ Edwards, Owen (2020). Metathesis and Unmetathesis in Amarasi. Berlin: Language Science Press. doi:10.5281/zenodo.3700413. ISBN 978-3-96110-223-5.
  4. ^ "Dawan (Uab Meto)".
  5. ^ Tarno et al. (1992)
  6. ^ Edwards (2016), pp. 71–72
  7. ^ "Uab Meto Wordlist". Austronesian Basic Vocabulary Database.
  8. ^ Edwards (2016), pp. 79–85

Further reading