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Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-11, 11:23
by atalarikt
Caution! Most of these resources are in Chinese (while some others are in English), so knowledge of Chinese is required to use/read/grasp them.

Greetings fellow linguaphiles! In this thread, I will share various resources of the Formosan languages from the Austronesian language family.

The Formosan languages are the branch of Austronesian language family spoken by the Taiwanese Aboriginal tribes (e.g. Rukai, Tsou, Atayal, Paiwan, etc.). All the languages in this branch, unfortunately, don't enjoy as much popularity as their sibling branch Malayo-Polynesian, largely due to centuries of language shift to various Chinese languages. More info regarding the Formosan language branch can be found in this Wikipedia page.

Any kind of contribution is welcome, either by posts of various resources or showcasing your knowledge of at least one Formosan language. Or maybe you can even make effective learning resources/pages/etc. out of the existing ones shared here!
If you find one or more links that are either dead or inaccessible, let me know! I will delete them from this thread.

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Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-14, 5:39
by księżycowy
Cool. Thanks for sharing!

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-14, 6:02
by atalarikt
księżycowy wrote:Cool. Thanks for sharing!

No problem.

Sadly, the entire website itself is (obviously) in Chinese, so some inexperienced people may have hard time exploring the website.
Anyway, here's a page about the Rukai source language (in English) from the official website of Taiwan Indigenous Culture Park. It has other pages for some other indigenous tribes as well.
Link apparently does not show anything useful regarding Formosan languages (at least to my devices). Only blank space when opening the "source language" part.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-16, 0:58
by atalarikt
A Comparative Austronesian Vocabulary of Formosan Languages and Dialects by Naoyoshi Ogawa, ed. by Paul Jen-Kuei Li and Masayuki Toyoshima (2006)

This is an archive.org link of the book, which you can download for free.
EDIT: Turns out you can only borrow it online for 14 days.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-16, 15:06
by księżycowy
Keep these links coming! I've been interested in Formosan languages for a while now. It's nice too see some resources starting to be gathered. :D

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-16, 15:37
by atalarikt
księżycowy wrote:Keep these links coming! I've been interested in Formosan languages for a while now. It's nice too see some resources starting to be gathered. :D

Sure thing! Now if only someone could arrange these resources to make them much more effective to learn or understand... Not to mention that some resources are still not too easy to access.

The Great Diversity of Formosan Languages by Paul Jen-kuei Li of Academia Sinica, a paper on Formosan languages with some example sentences and an extensive list of vocabulary which greatly showcase grammatical features of each language in the paper.

Oh, and Wiktionary has this page of cognate sets for Formosan languages, with words from Rukai (5 dialects), the Duhtu dialect of Tsou, Kanakanabu, Saaroa, Puyuma (3), Paiwan (3), Amis (2), Sakizaya, Bunun (3), Atayal (2), Seediq (4), and Saisiyat (2).

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-17, 6:39
by atalarikt
The good ol' Austronesian Basic Vocabulary Database

The Austronesian Comparative Dictionary (web edition) by Robert Blust and Stephen Trussel. Contains an extensive list of vocabulary, but is also work-in-progress.

A grammar of Lha'alua, an Austronesian language of Taiwan, a PhD thesis by Chia-jung Pan. James Cook University, Australia.
Note: Lha'alua/Hla'alua is another name for Saaroa.

A few Taiwanese (Hokkien?) words and some place names in Taiwan originating from Formosan languages.

Formosan Languages Meet AI, a good blog entry from The Glossika Blog regarding Formosan languages and the future of them.

Taiwan Indigenous TV (TITV), a YouTube channel with news videos in Chinese and various local Austronesian languages (including Yami, the only Malayo-Polynesian indigenous Austronesian language in Taiwan), although several local languages, such as Thao, are unavailable. Still highly recommended for those who already understand Chinese or want to get an idea of how Formosan languages sound like.

Ogawa's Vocabulary of Formosan Dialects, an online dictionary database based on a book Comparative Vocabulary of Formosan Dialects, compiled by the late Dr. Naoyoshi Ogawa (1869-1947). By the time this was written (January 17th, 2018), the database is currently out of service. Let me know if the problem still persists after the date.

These Facebook pages post some vocabulary of Thao, Kanakanavu, and Saaroa respectively. (No updates since August 2017)

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-17, 9:21
by atalarikt
There's this Filipino kid chef called Chef Rafi who teaches you not just how to cook, but also languages (check out his YouTube channel as well for more cooking 'n' linguistic goodness).
Here, the particular language he uses is Atayal, with some English translation.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6n5MonvdDO0

His blog post based on the video, including interlinear gloss as well!

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-30, 11:55
by atalarikt
Vocabulary of the Day

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Language: Amis (Pangcah)
mi'aw'aw
Translation: to bark

Example: Mi'aw'aw kora waco i takowanan.
The dog barked at me.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-01-31, 14:31
by atalarikt
Vocabulary of the Day

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Language: Puyuma (Pinuyumayan)
gerger
Translation: bee

Example: Taranapaw an muka mu i drenan, an tu karatraw mu dra gerger.
Be careful when you go up the mountain, so as not to be stung by bees.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-04, 12:12
by atalarikt
Vocabulary of the Day

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Language: Atayal (Tayal)
ikay
Translation: to give sth. to someone

Example: Ikay mami' qasa niqun maku'.
Give me that rice (for me) to eat.

Did you know...
...that Atayal is one source language of a creole language Yilan Creole Japanese?

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-07, 22:07
by atalarikt
Found this song from a Facebook group Austronesian Music Box, which in turn found it from a post in a Forumosa thread.

This is a traditional Amis song also known as "Malan Girl", "The Girl of Malan", and "Malan Romance". It has been covered in Mandarin as well.
This is a modern rendition of the original Amis version, sung by Usay Kawlu.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yn2a2O8ebW0

Vocabulary:
Ina - Mother
Inaaw - Oh Mother
Ama - Father
Amaaw - Oh Father
Solol - Forgiveness
Sololen - Forgive. '-en' suffix turns it into a verb (cf. Sundanese -keun, Indonesian/Malay -kan & -ken)
Matini - As of now
Licay - Enquire
Tireng - Body, self
Wawa - Child
Tao - Other person (Austronesian root for person, cf. tau, to, tou, etc. from various languages in Sulawesi)
Wawa no tao - That person's child
Ano - If
Ca'ay - No
Kamo - Plural 'you' (cf. Indonesian/Malay kamu)
O - Oh
Ma'an say - What
Pinang - Core, fact, use
Patay - Death
Kasoling - Train, Japanese loan word, but it sounds like 'gasoline'. Could be refering to 'Gasoline Locomotive'.
Tolo - Three
Makino-tolo-tolo-an - Be made into 3. Double three (tolo-tolo) to emphasize. '-an' is a focus suffix

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-10, 1:54
by atalarikt
Here are the lyrics of Malan Girl.

Inaaw hay ya amaaw
Sololen kako ina
Matini similicayay
Ko wawa no tao to tireng ako ina
Ano caay kamo pisolol to tireng ako ina
Omaan say ko pinang ko
Mika patay makinotolo toloan no kasoling

English translation:
Oh Mother, Oh Father
Please forgive me, Mother
Now, that gentleman's son...
...has proposed me, Dear Mother
If you won't allow (forgive) me, Dear Mother...
Oh, it's no use...
I'll rather die and let the train cut me into three pieces.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 14:21
by atalarikt
Towards a Grammar of Takivatan Bunun by Rik L. J. de Busser (direct PDF link)
WARNING! This PDF contains a huge number of 711 pages.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 14:34
by księżycowy
If only there was a textbook for at least one of these languages. I'd love to learn one.

Well, actually, there very well might be one, but it's probably in Chinese.

By the way, atalarikt, what happened to our Word of the Day? :P
I was enjoying reading those. (Not that anyone actually has to post them daily. Weekly would be nice though.)

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 15:26
by atalarikt
księżycowy wrote:By the way, atalarikt, what happened to our Word of the Day? :P
I was enjoying reading those. (Not that anyone actually has to post them daily. Weekly would be nice though.)

Ah, apologies, I am pretty busy at times, so I can't keep posting daily.
Maybe somebody can help me manage the business as well. Would you like to? :wink:
Anyway, thanks for the suggestion. I'll try posting them weekly now, as opposed to daily.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 15:48
by księżycowy
As long as I know where the information is coming from, I don't mind helping at all. :)

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 15:55
by atalarikt
księżycowy wrote:As long as I know where the information is coming from, I don't mind helping at all. :)

Some Googling wouldn't hurt. In fact, that's where I got various theses/papers on Formosan languages (mostly from academical websites such as Australian National University).

As for words/vocabulary, you can check this out. http://m-dictionary.apc.gov.tw/
You need some knowledge of Chinese browsing through it though (I found out about how the site works purely by wild guesses-and-exploration :lol: ).

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-11, 21:36
by atalarikt
Vocabulary of the Week

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Language: Thao (Thaw a lalawa)
kurkur
Translation: to scratch

Example: Kurkur uhu sa thithu a kakurkur, amaqa thithu akunkimzi.
You scratch his armpit, so that he will itch and tremble.

Re: Formosan/Taiwanese Aboriginal languages (Austronesian)

Posted: 2018-02-12, 14:29
by księżycowy
For those who know Chinese, atalarikt posted this site in the Chinese translation request thread. I thought it'd be useful to post here as well: https://web.alcd.tw/classroom/
It's a series of textbooks for some of the Formosan languages (in Chinese of course)!