A grammar of dime by Mulugeta Seyoum

By Mulugeta Seyoum

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The terminal vowels e, i and u are often deleted when a vocalic morpheme is added to the noun. It is noted that nouns ending with the vowels i/e are common in the Us’a dialect, whereas in the Gerfa dialect nouns with u-ending are much common (cf. the list of words in chapter one indicating the lexical variation between the two dialects). There are also vocalic morphemes such as locative -o⁄, interrogative -a⁄a⁄, and possessive -e⁄; the different morphological status of these vowels, vis-aŸ-vis the terminal vowels, is indicated by placing morpheme boundaries before them.

E], half open front vowel. Examples: p'E⁄lt'e ‘testicles’ mEh ‘money’ 81. [a] open central vowel. Examples: /afe ‘mouth’ wonna ‘return’ 82. [´] half-open central vowel. Examples: b´lte⁄ ‘luck’ δl ‘flour’ wѐ⁄´n ‘cattle’ 83. [o] half close back vowel. Examples: po⁄lu⁄ ‘made a vow’ ko⁄xo ‘love’ 84. [O] half-open back vowel. Examples: wѐ⁄´n ‘cattle’ kOxu ‘crow’ 85. [u] close back vowel. 2 Contrast of comparable vowel phonemes The vowels i, e, u, o and a contrast with È, E, O and ´. The following are examples.

Otherwise the Dime lexicon is predominantly disyllabic. The following are examples of tone patterns in disyllabic nouns and verbs. 103. 2 Verbs wontsu⁄ bi⁄ndi⁄ tummu guu⁄fu⁄ du⁄u⁄ru k’aamse⁄ /afe /a⁄ime⁄ lo⁄o⁄su gu⁄it’ub guuru ‘answer’ ‘ash’ ‘stomach’ ‘navel’ ‘elephant’ ‘hear’ ‘eye’ ‘movement’ ‘uvula’ ‘white’ ‘crocodile’ LH HH LL LHH HHH LLH HL HLH HHL HLL LLL bulu⁄ fa⁄s‹i⁄nt’ s‹ini boo⁄lu⁄ ko⁄o⁄ru looXo⁄n bindi do⁄ista⁄l zi⁄i⁄ti za⁄ap’e bolidi ‘disconnect’ ‘separate’ ‘buy’ ‘cursing to kill’ ‘plant’ ‘sweat’ ‘create’ ‘adjust the grinder’ ‘hang up’ ‘lie down’ ‘forcast’ Tone and lexical distinctions.

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