+++++ This week through your m43 -- 5 July +++++

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
Hen3ry
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Thanks, Jorginho. Regarding languages…
In reply to Jorginho, 3 months ago

Jorginho wrote:

I noted that some came from New Caledonia, which is quite a bit away and I think it is French speaking?

Yes it is. In fact, in the Fwench way, it is still part of France (I think!). Of course, villager retain their own languages.

I always wonder if these related people, in their own language, can understand eachother? I found that Bahasa Indonesia has some clear links with Polynesian languages for instance (and may be Tagalog).

What you are talking about is the Austronesian family of languages, and yes, Bahasa, while in many respects a very sophisticated creole (you'll find hundreds of Dutch words there and quite a few Portuguese ones), is Austronesian-based and thus is related to Tagalog which is also Austronesian, but they are not mutually understandable.

The Austronesian language family originates with the Aboriginal Taiwanese, not the Chinese who dominate the island now, but the original islanders. The languages are not mutually understandable for the most part, but are related -- similar words pop up, construction follows similar rules, and so on.

About 25% of the languages of Papua New Guinea are Austronesian -- they are all in the islands or around the coast, but not all islands and coastal languages are of that family (PNG has about 800 separate languages).

The Austronesian languages sweep down in a curve from Taiwan, through Indochina (e.g. H'mong) and out to the Philippines, then the Indonesian and Malaysian islands (East Timor/Toimor-Leste which I know a little, has several Austronesian languages and the main language, Tetum Praça, is an Austronesian-based (Tetum) creole with Portuguese being the main secondary contributor), PNG, and across the Pacific (but not penetrating Australia).

And it was all people traveling by canoe apparently into the wild blue yonder!

One of the most recent migrations was the people who are now the Maoris of New Zealand. They arrived on the shores of the Land of the Long White Cloud only about 1500 years ago. Their history is fascinating.

Very nice pics, but the nicest to me is the one with the most detail: the guy shooting a pic with a his mobphone.

Heh, heh. Mobile phone services are very cheap to install and run, so they are all over the poor countries just as they are all over the rich countries.

So there you go, compa!

Cheers, geoff

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Geoffrey Heard
Down and out in Rabaul in the South Pacific
http://pngtimetraveller.blogspot.com/2011/10/return-to-karai-komana_31.html

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