A Grammatical Sketch of the Lusaamia Verb

ISBN 978-3-89645-546-8

A Grammatical Sketch of the Lusaamia Verb

Author: Robert Botne. In collaboration with: Michael R. Marlo, Hannington Ochwada. Series edited by: Wilhelm J.G. Möhlig, Bernd Heine.

Series: Grammatical Analyses of African Languages Volume 30

10 pp. Roman, 186 pp.
1 map, 3 tables, numerous charts, index
Text language(s): English
Format: 160 x 240 mm
410 g
€ 34.80

The Bantu language under consideration is classified as E.34 Guthrie’s zone classification, and J.34 in the Tervuren revision of Guthrie. Lusaamia Ólusaamya in the language itself – is spoken along the eastern shores of Lake Victoria in western Kenya and eastern Uganda. There are approximately 50,000 speakers in Kenya and 175,000 speakers in Uganda. It is considered to be one of seventeen dialects constituting the Luluyia language cluster. Lusaamia is an agglutinating language – like nearly all Bantu languages – with a basic SVO word order.

This sketch represents the language as spoken in Busia, Western Province, Kenya. The Saamia people live in close proximity to the Luo people. Because of the dominant size of the Luo population and culture, Lusaamia has a significant number of lexical borrowings from Dholuo. The data described here differ in certain respects from some of the descriptions found in Angogo Kanyoro (1983) and Chagas (1876).

The present work analyses the composition and forms of the verbal word. Besides all typical verbal categories like tense, aspect (Aktionsart), mood, the author also provides detailed descriptions of clitics, the occuring extensions in form of suffixal elements, reduplication phenomena as well as phonological and syllable characteristics of the verb forms of this language. It also contains some proverbs, sayings, and texts followed by a Lusaamia verb stem lexicon Lusaamia–English and English–Lusaamia.

Review in Afrikanistik online 2007

Following the links below, you will find further editions of the author in our programme:



Because so little work on the grammatical structure of this language has been published this first more comprehensive overview is highly welcome and appreciated. [...] The sketch provides a solid data base of the Lusaamia verb structure containing many examples with brief functional descriptions. This grammatical overview is very useful for typologists and everybody else who is interested in Bantu verb structure.

Uschi Drolc in Afrikanistik-online, www.afrikanistik-online.de/archiv/2007/1040, pp. 1-2

The detailed information about Lusaamia verbal morphology found in the work as a whole makes it a useful reference for those with some background in comparative Bantu verbal morphology […]

Maarten Mous in Journal of African Languages and Linguistics, 29/2, 2008, pp. 246-249

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