A Sketch of Kanuri

ISBN 978-3-89645-032-6

A Sketch of Kanuri

Author: Norbert Cyffer. Series edited by: Wilhelm J.G. Möhlig, Bernd Heine.

Series: Grammatical Analyses of African Languages Volume 9

80 pp.
2 maps, 4 figures, numerous tables, appendix, index
Text language(s): English
Format: 160 x 240 mm
220 g
€ 22.80

Kanuri belongs to the Saharan language family and is spoken by some four million people in the area surrounding Lake Chad in Nigeria, Niger and Chad. In 1854, Sigismund Wilhelm Koelle wrote the first full grammar of Kanuri and published a text collection in the same year. Johannes Lukas completed his studies at the University of Vienna/Austria by the PhD thesis „Studien zur Kanuri Grammatik und Literatur an Hand unedierter Texte“.

The present grammatical sketch gives basic information on origin, distribution and linguistic relatives of Kanuri. The main part comprises phonology, morphology and syntax and is followed by an introduction to the different dialects within Kanuri and sociolinguistic considerations. The main purpose of this present study is to provide an abridged description of Kanuri on hierarchic grammatical levels. Special emphasis is also placed on typological features of the language in order to afford the non-Kanuri expert an insight into typical structural features of Kanuri grammar.

This grammar was also written to assist the Kanuri teacher in teaching Kanuri as a mother tongue or as a foreign language. The student of Kanuri may find this book a useful companion to his teaching materials. It is also intended to stimulate future researchers to continue to disclose the many unresolved problems of grammatical analysis.

Accompanying material:


Die vorliegende Kanuri-Skizze dokumentiert in komprimierter Form den erreichten Forschungsstand und gibt gleichzeitig einen Überblick über die grundlegenden grammatischen Strukturen.

Angelika Jakobi in Afrika und Übersee, 82/1999, pp. 309-312

The stimulating and instigating character of this sketch may [...] be considered one of its most important merits; it is of great use for Africanists and general linguists who are interested in having a fine general overview of this important Saharan language, both from sociolinguistic and historical points of view.

Doris Löhr in Frankfurter Afrikanistische Blätter, 11/1999, pp. 157-159


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