Grammatical Description of Buwal

A PhD dissertation (700+  pages) on Buwal (Central Chadic) completed by Melanie Viljeon is available online at the SIL Cameroon website: A GRAMMATICAL DESCRIPTION OF THE BUWAL LANGUAGE (PDF, 9,1 MB)

More on Buwal on the SIL Cameroon website

Download: The sign language of the Mofu-Gudur

(via Blog Méga-Tchad) The following PhD thesis by Liliane Sorin-Barreteau is available for download at

Sorin-Barreteau, L.Le langage gestuel des mofu-gudur au Cameroun. Livre 1 : introduction et description; livre 2 : lexique gestuel A-G; livre 3 : lexique gestuel H-Z. Thèse du Doctorat, Université Paris V – René Descartes, 1996. Electronic ISBN publication, Mandaras Publishing, London 2011 (935 pages).  [10MB]

The sign language of the Mofu-Gudur is based on a general system of physical gestures which can be understood by every speaker of this language and not only by deaf people and sign language specialists, as this is the case with most modern sign languages. Liliane Sorin-Barreteau describes this in her extensive introduction (page 35/37) where she also gives an extensive description of the Mofu-Gudur way of thinking, drawn from their cultural knowledge system. The lexicon is covering a huge number of mainly verbs, accompanied by drawings of the relevant sign actions for each verb and represents a major source for any student of similar local sign languages as they have developed in other oral societies around the world.


Chadic Lexical Database

“Chadic Lexical Database”  is a project run by Olga Stolbova at the Institute of Oriental Studies in Moscow. The main goal of the project is to arrange the greater part of Chadic lexical data so far collected in kind of preliminary etymological entries. The project was presented in Prague, 2003.

Up to now three issues are available:

  • Chadic  Lexical Database Issue I: Letters L, N, NY, R. Moscow-Kaluga 2005
  • Chadic  Lexical Database Issue II: Lateral fricatives. Moscow-Kaluga 2007 (Download)
  • Chadic  Lexical Database Issue III: Sibilants and sibilant affricates, 2009 (Download)

Here is a sample entry (taken from Issue II):

A second edition of Issue III (with addenda and corrigenda) appeared in January, 2010.

Olga Stolbova has allowed us to put a PDF version of Issue II and Issue III online for download (file size ~1 MB).

For more details on the project see: O. Stolbova 2006. “Chadic Lexical Data Base: a project”, in: D.Ibriszimow (ed.), Topics in Chadic Linguistics II,  Papers from the 2nd Biennial International Colloquium on the Chadic Languages, Prague, October 11-12, 2003. Rüdiger Köppe Verlag, pp.85-104.

1. * V   `to cut (off, through), to slaughter’:    7 Sha î  `slaughter; shlachten’
(redupl.) [JgR]; C  2  Bura a  `cut up, into   pieces’ [Ann], Margi   ə `cut
(with  knife)’  [HfM:127];    3  Bana  a    `couper,  tailler,  trancher;  cut  (off,
through)’,  aa  `decouper,  depecer’  [GLBn],  FK  a    `cut,  trim’  [BlNd];  5
Podoko  a: `cut’   [JL]; 7  Mbuko  ā `cut’  Ould  — `couper’, -ar   `couper
pour qqn’ [KOu];   Gisiga -  `schneiden, schlachten; cut, slaughter’ [LkG];  9
Mulwi  i      `trancher,  couper;  cut  (off,  through)’,  Mbara  ii  `cut’  [TrMba,
Mlw];   Mnj  a `to cut’   [Mo a, p. 41] // Eg ʕ  `cut off a body-part of a person
/animal, fell trees, harvest, cut in pieces’  [EG: 415] (Pyr).
GCl *a `cut’.

Chadic Newsletter turns 40

Many of you may not know it, but this year we celebrate the 40th anniversary of Chadic Newsletter. The first issue, an extremely simple mimeographed leaflet, appeared in March 1970, soon after the West African Linguistic Society meeting held in Abidjan where a newly founded Chadic Working Group entrusted Herrmann Jungraithmayr with the task of creating and editing a newsletter dedicated to research in the field of Chadic languages and linguistics.

Usually the one who celebrates will get the gifts. In the case of Chadic Newsletter’s anniversary, you will get a gift: With Herrmann Jungraithmayr’s friendly permission, we have started scanning the old issues and will put them online as PDF files. Here are the first six:

We won’t mind reading your birthday greetings and wishes :-). Drop us a note, or even better: Send one to Herrmann Jungraithmayr (his email address), who started it all 40 years ago.

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