Journal article

Counting systems of the Strickland-Bosavi languages, Papua New Guinea


Language & Linguistics in Melanesia | Linguistics Society of Papua New Guinea | Published : 2016


Information on the counting systems of 12 East Strickland and Bosavi languages is collated. In seven cases the body‐part tally system is symmetrical, with cycle lengths varying from 27 to 35. In four cases, the tally system is asymmetrical or truncated and in one case detailed information is not available. Methods of counting beyond one cycle have been described for all but one of the Bosavi languages but not for any of the East Strickland languages. An additional 2‐cycle or 2, 5‐cycle system is indicated for several East Strickland languages but not for any Bosavi language. Comparison with the counting systems of languages beyond the Strickland‐Bosavi region – especially with Ok languages t..

View full abstract