Khmer


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Khmer

 

(Cambodian), language of the Khmers. It belongs to the Mon-Khmer group of the Austroasiatic language family. There are two principal dialects in Cambodia: the northwestern (the regions around the cities of Battambang and Siem Reap) and the southeastern (the rest of the country). The Khmer alphabet originated from the Pali writing system. The earliest inscriptions discovered in the Khmer language date from the early seventh century. The modern literary language is based on the mixed dialect of the city of Phnom Penh. Khmer has an analytic structure: relations between words are expressed by word order and special auxiliary words. The older methods of word formation were typically prefixation, infixation, and reduplication; modern word formation in Khmer utilizes word compounding and— based on compounding—semiaffixation. Native single-root words consist of one or two syllables of a specific structure: the first syllable is always weak and closely united with a second (strong) syllable. The phonetic structure is characterized by a great number of vowels (two series of vowels: open and closed) and a relatively small number of consonants. The vocabulary contains many borrowings from Sanskrit, Pali, and French.

REFERENCES

Gorgoniev, Iu. A. Kkhmerskii iazyk. Moscow, 1961.
Gorgoniev, Iu. A. Grammatika kkhmerskogo iazyka. Moscow, 1966.
Maspero, G. Grammaire de la langue Khmere (cambodgien). Paris, 1915.
Jacob, J. M. Introduction to Cambodian. London, 1968.

IU. A. GORGONIEV

References in periodicals archive ?
After taking power, the Khmer Rouge, in a crusade to cleanse its society, ended up committing the most unspeakable genocide against its own people.
Sothy, who became disabled after falling from a tree, said the government repeatedly told local residents that they were going to turn the area into a tourist haven, commemorating the homes and bases of former Khmer Rouge cadres and leaders as well as setting up stupas to remember the dead.
Dress styles on Khmer sculptures indicate classes in society.
These seven communities and the locales they describe are ecologically, socially, and historically distinct from one another, yet together form the people, the Khmer Krom, in the land of Kampuchea Krom.
Taylor's research is based on seventeen research trips over more than a decade to hundreds of Khmer villages in the Mekong Delta-Kampuchea Krom area.
Chapter One covers the coastal province of Tra Vinh, where a network of sand dunes both provides a base for self-sufficient rice agriculture and a physical link between Khmer settlements, contributing to the region's prominence as a centre of Buddhist learning.
The tribunal, established in 2006, has so far convicted only one Khmer Rouge leader, Kaing Guek Eav, known as Duch, 70, who headed the notorious S-21 prison, and sentenced him to life in prison.
In December 2012, a Strategic Exclusive Partnership Agreement was signed among Khmer Resources, Khmer Media, and i-marker, with an effective period of ten years.
7 million people died of execution, starvation, exhaustion or lack of medical care as a result of the Khmer Rouge's radical policies, which essentially turned all of Cambodia into a forced labor camp as the movement attempted to create a pure agrarian socialist society.
when the Khmer Rouge regime emptied cities and relocated everyone in the country to communes, where they were forced to work toward a Communist agrarian utopia.
Hearings are scheduled this week to focus on M-13 prison, a secret centre which Duch ran from 1971 to 1975 during the Khmer Rouge insurgency against the then US-backed government.