Micronesian Languages

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Micronesian Languages


one of the distinct groups in the Austronesian (Malayo-Polynesian) language family, including dozens of small languages, such as Sonsorol, Yapese, Trukese, and Ponapean in the Caroline Islands, Marshallese and Gilbertese in the Marshall and Gilbert islands, and Nauru on Nauru Island. The grammatical structure of these languages is similar to that of the Melanesian languages. The Micronesian languages have several derivational series of numerals. For example, in the Nauru language the word “four” is āmen (when counting living things), āoe (when counting edible plants), and āeok (for abstract counting). Some scholars classify Palau, spoken in the Palau Islands in the Carolines, and Chamorro, spoken in the Marianas, as Indonesian rather than Micronesian languages.


Capell, A. “Oceanic Linguistics Today.” Current Anthropology, 1962, vol. 3, no. 4.
Izui, H. “The Languages of Micronesia: Their Unity and Diversity.” Lingua, 1965, vol. 14.
Bender, B. W. “Micronesian Languages.” In Current Trends in Linguistics, vol. 8. The Hague-Paris, 1971.


References in periodicals archive ?
The western Micronesian languages of Palauan and Chamorro stand in contrast to the Oceanic languages spoken in the rest of Remote Oceania.
The verb-object bonding principle and the pronominal system: with special reference to Nuclear Micronesian languages.
Semitransitive verbs and object incorporation in Micronesian languages.
The influence of matrilineal descent principles in Micronesia extends well beyond the island societies speaking what linguists call Nuclear Micronesian languages.