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By Tom Dutton, Darrell T. Tryon

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Table 4. ) *ku7 7 ? 7 ? ta? 7 *-mu(7) *-(n)da? *ia *kita? *kami *kamu *sida7 Proto-Malayic had only a free, an agent, and a possessive series of personal pronouns, and it did not share the mixed ergative typology of Embaloh and the South Sulawesi languages. The presence and extent of ergativity in Standard Malay is a matter of discussion among linguists. The details of this discussion do not concern us here, but it is clear that there is no strong formal criterion for considering as (mixed) ergative the syntax of Standard Malay and the other Malayic languages.

6. In the evaluation of forms in neighboring languages, I have relied on the sound correspondences presented in Ross (1988: chapter 5). The approach here assumes that all sound changes have applied throughout the lexicon. Given the fact of gradual diffusion through the lexicon of sound changes, this assumption might seem unwarranted. However, simply explaining away all irregular correspondences by waving the wand of lexical diffusion seems a bit too facile. This is particularly the case, given: 1) a context in which people have regular social interaction with other language groups, and 2) the existence in those neighboring languages of forms identical to the ones exhibiting irregular correspondences.

It is obvious that the split of Tamanic and South Sulawesi occurred before their speakers formed the societies they have today, and that these societies went through a long period of environmental adaptation and assimilation to neighbouring societies. As far as the exact position of Tamanic vis-ä-vis South Sulawesi languages is concerned, there are theoretically three possibilities. The three possibilities are (1) that Tamanic and South Sulawesi are separate and coordinate branches of a Tamanic-South Sulawesi sub-group, (2) that Tamanic as a branch is co-ordinate with several branches of South Sulawesi languages, or (3) that Tamanic sub-groups with a particular branch of South Sulawesi languages.

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