Comparative Bantu Pottery Vocabulary

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The Comparative Bantu Pottery Vocabulary Database offers following search options:

  • Language code: according to Guthrie's referential classification of the Bantu languages, each language is given a code consisting of three (occasionally four) characters. This code contains an upper case letter indicating the geographical zone (see "browse by zone") followed by two or three digits indicating language group and language. This is occasionally followed by a lower case letter indicating dialects. The codes used in the database follow more or less Jouni Maho's updated version of Guthrie's referential classification (see, except for Tervuren's Zone J.
  • Language name: Bantu language names may vary according to the source, but the database has uniformized them in order to have one name for one language
  • Protoform: List of lexical reconstructions with associated meanings. If proto-forms are preceded by *, they are assumed to go back to Proto-Bantu, while those preceded by * are proto-forms which are either post-Proto-Bantu or of uncertain status (= preliminary reconstructions).
  • Noun class: Conventional Bantu noun class digit as given in the source where the term has been found
  • Translation: in English, French, German, Portuguese, Spanish or Dutch as given in the source where the term has been found
  • Browse by zone: according to Guthrie's referential classification of the Bantu languages (see "Language code")
  • Browse by protoform: (see "Protoform")

Each search operation leads to a list of items matching your criteria, giving for each item the term, the language in which it occurs with the language code and the translation as given in the source.

More detailed information can be obtained by clicking on a item. In the resulting interface, you get following data:

  • Language code
  • Language name
  • Translation
  • Noun class
  • Tonality: tone pattern of the noun stem or verb root as found in the source
  • Reference: authors of the source, year of publication and, in most cases, a page number. Complete bibliographical references can be found in the separate reference list
  • Protoform + Protosense
  • Cross-references: by clicking on "related terms" all reflexes of the above protoform are given; if no protoform is proposed, but you can still get a list of related terms, it concerns a comparative series which is in all likelihood historically related, but for which no proto-form has been reconstructed yet, even not a preliminary one; if a BLR link is proposed by means of an unique index number, you can find the relevant reconstruction in the Bantu Lexical Reconstructions 3 database by clicking on the index number.