Kamrau Bay

    Timothy Usher, Santa Fe Institute

    Situation

    The Kamrau Bay family consists of three closely-related languages, Buruwai, alos known as Sabakor (Sebakor,) South Kamrau (Kamberau,) also known as Asienara and North Kamrau (Kamberau,) also known as Iria, spoken around and to the west of Kamrau Bay at the southeast corner of the Bomberai peninsula in the Kaimana regency of Indonesia's West Papua province. Buruwai and Kamrau are the names of major rivers which flow into Kamrau Bay around which the languages named for them are spoken, since the people seem to have no clearly stablished names for themselves or their languages (Anceaux 1958: 116-117, Voorhoeve 1975: 369-370, Walker and Hesse 1988: 1, 2, 3, Visser 1989: 65-66, 68.) Voorhoeve (2005, 2007) calls this family Sabakor, but this is at best the name of only one of the languages and Sebakor refers to a bay on the west side of the Bomberai peninsula in which Kalamang and Uruangnirin are spoken.

    Subclassification

    The internal classification of Kamrau Bay is as follows (Walker and Hesse 1988: 2):

    Kamrau Bay
        Buruwai
        Kamrau
            South Kamrau
            North Kamrau

    There has been quite a bit of confusion surrounding the use of the term Asienara, leading to the common misconception that there are only two rather than three languages in the Kamrau Bay family and that Asienara is another name for the Buruwai language. According to Walker and Hesse (1988 2,) Asienara refers to Southhern Kamberau, as spoken in the villages of Esania, Yarona, Edor and Kembala to the east of the lower Buruwai river, a completely different language from Buruwai aross the river to the southwest. Anceaux's (1958: 119-129) brief published vocabulary of Asienara is indeed the same language as South Kamrau. The same is true of Greenberg's (n.d.) lengthier excerpts from Anceaux's (n.d.) notebooks.
    However, the vocabulary entitled Asienara in Voorhoeve (1975: 1975: 100) is in fact Buruwai, despite the fact that it too was drawn from Anceaux (n.d.) We can offer no easy explanation for this discrepancy besides the possibility that Anceaux may have had several vocabularies alleged to represent Asienara, with Greenberg exerpting from one and Voorhoeve from the other. Indeed, Voorhoeve's (2007) unpublished comparative vocabularies has some words representing Gaka and Guriasa villages attributed in part to Anceaux (n.d.) Anceaux's (1958: 111) map of the region includes inhabited portions of Walker and Hesse's (p. 3) South Kamberau territory, while both South Kamrau and Buruwai-speaking villages are listed as representing two different dialects of Asienara (p. 116, recapitulated in Voorhoeve 1975: 31.) Visser (1989: 38) writes, "It is revealing that the language spoken by the Sabakor people was called 'Asienara' (Anceaux 1958: 116) , which in Kamrau language means: people with curled hair;" however (p. 75) her survey was conducted with Voorhoeve . This incorrect conflation may also explain the seeming contradiction between Voorhoeve's (1975: 369, echoed by Wurm 1982: 138) comment that Iria and Asienara might be dialects of the same language.with his assertion as quoted by Walker and Hesse (1988: 2 after Voorhoeve p.c.) that Buruwai is a distinct language.

    Walker and Hesse (1988: 2) give lexicostatistical figures between eleven Kamrau Bay villages as follows:

    Buruwai Buruwai Buruwai S. Kamr. S. Kamr. N. Kamr. N. Kamr. N. Kamr. N. Kamr. N. Kamr. N. Kamr.
    Gaka Tairi Yarona 2 Yarona 1 Esania Ubia Bahomia Waho Wamesa Koi Tanngar.
 Buruwai  Gaka --- 89 83 61 60 52 50 53 55 55 55
 Buruwai  Tairi 89 --- 88 67 63 58 57 59 62 62 60
 Buruwai  Yarona 2 83 88 --- 75 73 59 60 61 64 63 65
 S. Kamrau  Yarona 1 61 67 75 --- 93 78 76 76 79 78 79
 S. Kamrau  Esania 60 63 73 93 --- 80 79 77 80 79 80
 N. Kamrau  Ubia 52 58 59 78 80 --- 94 93 91 91 90
 N. Kamrau  Bahomia 50 57 60 76 79 94 --- 94 93 92 94
 N. Kamrau  Waho 53 59 61 76 77 93 94 --- 97 94 96
 N. Kamrau  Wamesa 55 62 64 79 80 91 93 97 --- 97 97
 N. Kamrau  Koi 55 62 63 78 79 91 92 94 97 --- 99
 N. Kamrau  Tanggar. 55 60 65 79 80 90 94 96 97 99 ---
    (In the chart above, Gaka stands for Gaka-Guriasa, Ubia for Ubia-Sermuku, Tanggar. for Tanggaromi and Kamr. for Kamrau.)

    Sources

    Anceaux (n.d.) vocabularies for Asienara and Iria (unobtained)
    Anceaux (1956) (unobtained,) reprinted in English as (1958)
    Anceaux (1958: 116-117) brief description of and (pp. 119-120) 10 comparative terms for Asienara (South Kamrau) and Iria
    Greenberg (n.d.) comparative vocabularies for Iria and Asienara (South Kamrau) following Anxeaux (n.d.)
    Voorhoeve (1975: 100) 40 comparative terms for Iria and Asienara (Buruwai) following Anceaux (n.d.)
    Voorhoeve (1975: 369-370) phoneme inventories and pronouns for Iria and Asienara
    Voorhoeve (1980: 661-121) Proto-Asmat includes Iria words from Anceaux (n.d.)
    Visser (1989) kin and miscellaneous terms for Sabakor (Buruwai) of Gaka village and Kamrau (North Kamrau) of Ubia-Sermuku village
    Voorhoeve (2007) 227 comparative terms for Buruwai and Kamrau (mix of North Kamrau and South Kamrau)
    Walker (1978) 110 comparative terms for Gaka village (Buruwai) and Obia-Seramuku, Waho and Wainoma villages (North Kamrau)
    Walker (1983) 49 comparative terms for Kambola village (South Kamrau)
    Walker and Hesse (1988) 209 comparative terms for Buruwai of Tairi village and Northern Kamberau of Waho village, 127 comparative terms for Buruwai of Yarona and Guriasa/Gaka villages, Southern Kamberau of Esania-Kuna and Yarona villages and Northern Kamberau of Tanggaromi, Bahomia, Ubia-Seramuku and Koi villages and 58 comparative terms for Northern Kamberau of Wamesa village
    Matsumura (1985) 60 terms for Kamberau of Wanoma village (North Kamrau)

    In addition to these, three unattributed typewritten vocabularies have been made available to us by SIL Indonesia dating to July and August 1956. They are glossed in Dutch and Indonesian and give 100 comparative terms for Gaka village (Buruwai,) Esania/Kuna village (South Kamrau) and Koi village (North Kamrau).

    Voorhoeve's (2007) unattributed Buruwai and Kamrau vocabularies are not specified by location, but most likely largely largely represent the villages of Gaka and Ubia-Sermuku, since these are the Buruwai and (North) Kamrau villages that Visser and Voorhoeve had visited in 1986 (Visser 1989: 66, 75.) Walker and Hesse's Ubia-Seramuku vocabulary is North Kamrau but contains some unambiguously South Kamrau words, which may at least partly explain Voorhoeve's mix of the two varieites in his Kamrau vocabulary as the village itself probably includes some South Kamrau speakers.

    History of classification

    [under construction]

    Anceaux (1958: 118-119): “Of some languages it is very clear that they are related, in some cases even closely related, e.g. Iria to Asienara…It is quite possible that further inquiries will prove that all these Papuan languages are related. There are many indications of such a relationship but a definite proof has not yet been given. Of all the Papuan languages of the Bomberai Peninsula Asienara and Iria are the most dissimilar, at least in their vocabulary, but even they have words that may be common with other languages."

    Voorhoeve (1968: 4) Kamoro-Sempan-Asmat group does not include Anceaux's Asienara and Iria.

    Greenberg (1971: 840): "It has not been previously noted that these two languages [Asienara and Iria] are to be connected with the Kamoro group to the east from which they are separated both by the Etna Bay subgroup of the Western New Guinea subfamily and by Irarutu, an AN language.

    Voorhoeve (1975: 369) includes Iria and Asienara in the Asmat-Kamoro family, but fails to credit Greenberg for this discovery. "Iria and Asienara share nearly 80% cognates, the other percentages within the family range from 50 % to 70 % . There is no clear subgrouping; Iria and Asienara seem to be somewhat closer related to Asmat than to Kamoro."

    Voorhoeve (2005) …

    Historical phonology

    [under construction]

    Proto-Kamrau Bay had 13 consonants and 5 vowels as follows::

*m *n
*p *t *k
*b *d *gʲ
*s
*w *r *j

*i *u
*e *o
*a

    Comparison with the inventory proposed in Voorhoeve (1975: 369-370) …

    …

    Apical non-stop /*r/ does not occur initially; otherwise any consonant can occur initially or medially. Consonant clusters are found only in compounds.

    Only six consonants occur root-finally. These are most typically suffixed with the article /*-(r)a/, where [r] is modified or dropped following a consonant:

*m *n
*t *k
*r *j

    The combinations of final consonants and article /*-(r)a/ are analyzed by Voorhoeve (1980: 66) as class markers "In this language the nouns seem to fall into three classes: those ending in -ra, in -ka or in -ʔa, and in -a or -da." Analogous situations are found in West Kainantu (as well as Goroka) and in Baruya of Kratke Range, where Bee (1963) and Lloyd (1969) interpret a reduced set of finals as nominal class suffixes.

    Initial consonants correspond as follows:


    Medialconsonants correspond as follows:


    Root-final consonants in combination with article /*-ra/ correspond as follows:


    Vowels correspond as follows:


    These correspondences are exempified as follows … All attestations below are unless marked otherwise drawn from Anceaux (n.d.) as excerpted by Greenberg (n.d.) These match Voorhoeve's reiterations where they can be checked, and Greenberg's practice here was to copy transcriptions exactly as they appeared in his sources; therefore we believe them to be reliable. Those which draw from Voorhoeve's excerpts are marked with [cv].


    … initial consonants …

    Initial bilabial nasal /*m/ …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *m-          
   *…          

    Initial apical nasal /*n/ …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *n-          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          


    … medical consonants …

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          

    …:

   Kamrau Bay  Buruwai  S. Kamrau  S. Kamrau  N. Kamrau  N. Kamrau
     Tairi  Yarona  Asienara  Waho  Iria
     Walker  Walker  Anceaux  Walker  Anceaux
   *…          
   *…          


    … final consonants …

    The only direct evidence of final archiphoneme /*N/ is the dropping of [r] in article /*-(r)a/. Its presence is confirmed by comparison to Asmat-Kamoro, which has final nasals /*m *n/ in these roots:

   Kamrau Bay  Asienara  Iria  Asmat-Kamoro
   *-N  ø  ø  *-m
 hot  *am[u]aN  ama  amua  *amam
 wife  *ajaoN  aja  ajaw-a  *eaom
 ribs  *awiN  abi-eke-ra  aβi-eʔe-ra  *jawim
 louse  *oN    o-a [cv]  *aom
 fish  *noN  n-a  no-a  *enaom
   *-N  ø  ø  *-n
 mouth/lips  *iwuN-hu  iβu-hu-ra  iβu-ɸu-ra  *jewun
 bow  *amoN  amo-a  amo-a  *amoen
 sand  *siN    si--a  *sin
 hair  *hiN  hi-a  hi-ə  *fin
 ear  *jah[u][a]N  jahu  ehu-a  *jafaen

    Final /*T/ is known from only one example:

   Kamrau Bay  Asienara  Iria  Asmat-Kamoro
   *-T  t  t  *-s
 blood/red  *eT  et-a  et-a  *es

    Final /*D/ appears to reflect palatal /*j/ or [*j]:

   Kamrau Bay  Asienara  Iria  Asmat-Kamoro
   *-D  d  d  *-j
 urine  *eD  ed-a  ed-a  *ji
 person  *ueD    ued-ə  *kawej
 water  *moD  mod-a  mod-a  *muj
 bird  *geD  ged-a  ged-a  
 pig fat  *hueD  hued-a  hued-a  

    Examples of root-final /*k/ include the following. It's not yet clear what Asmat-Kamrau Bay sound(s) these should reflect:

   Kamrau Bay  Asienara  Iria
   *-K  k [k ø]  k [ʔ k]
 cold  *ihoK  ihok-a  
 knee  *iniK  inik-a  iniʔ-a
 earth/ground  *eK  ɛk-a  eʔ-a
 netbag  *eseK    esek-a [cv]
 thigh  *aK  ak-a  aʔ-a
 ripe  *aK  ak-a  aʔ-a
 husband  *amodaK  amodak-a  amoda
 thumb  *mahek-awoK  mahe-awok-a  maheʔ-awoʔ-a
 pig  *oK    ok-a  [cv]
 old (person)  *uboK  ubok-a  uboʔ-a
 nose  *miK  mik-a  miʔ-a
 mucus  *miniK  minik-a  miniʔ-a
 path  *maK  mak-a  maʔ-ə
 saliva  *masaK  masak-a  
 hand/arm  *maheK  mahek-a  maheʔ(-a)
 armpit  *mopuK  mopu-a  mopuk-a
 sugarcane  *moneK  monek-a  moneʔ-a
 buttocks  *buK  buk-a  buʔ-ə
 tooth  *siK  sik-a  siʔ-a
 rain  *geK  gɛk-a  giʔ-a
 night  *jawaK  iawak-a  iewaʔ-a
 rope  *waraK  uarak-a  uaraʔ-a

    The behavior of /*R/ is puzzling, in that it appears to cause following [r] of /*-(r)a/ to drop, while also dropping itself. It is therefore synchronically indistinguishable from /*N/, but corresponds to final /*r/ in Asmat-Kamoro:

   Kamrau Bay  Asienara  Iria  Asmat-Kamoro
   *-R  ø  ø  *-r
 dog  *iwuR  ibu-a  ib-a  *juwuir
 wing  *ahaR-hu  aha-hu-ra  ha-hu-ra  *jafor
 navel  *umabiR  umabi-a  umabe  *…
 vagina  *beR  be-a  be-a  *per

    One answer might be that the article was originally just /*a/, that glottal stop [ʔ] was in pre-Kamrau Bay appended to all vowel-final roots (q.v. Peckham's 1991 Nanesa Kamoro,) and that [ʔ] then became [r] when followed by the article, an equivalence found in (for example) West Kainantu under broadly similar diachronic conditions. We don't have enough data to arrive at a firm conclusion.


    Pronouns

    Anceaux (n.d.) gives free pronouns for Asienara and Iria as follows:

   Kamrauu Bay  Asienara  Iria
 1 sg.    noa  noa
 2 sg.    orua  oroa
 3 sg./pl.    ara  ara
 1 pl.    na  na
 2 pl.    eria  eria

    We share Voorhoeve's (1975: 370, 448) doubts about the reliability of Anceaux' Iria third persons plurals (<ariʔa> etc.) and follow his suggestion that, as in the closely-related Asmat-Kamoro languages, there was no number distinction in the third person.

    Possessives are given for Asienara as follows:

   Asienara
 1 sg.  -nea
 2 sg.  -wea
 3 sg.  -aja
 1 pl.  -naja
 2 pl.  -jaja

    The apparently postposed possessors cannot directly continue Trans New Guinea's prefixed inalienables. The situation is superficially similar to that found in Mor across the Bomberai to the northwest (Hammarström 2012: 11-12,) in which alienable possessors descending from Western Peninsulas' free obliques in /*-i/ have been encliticized to their preceding objects.


    Verbal morphology

    Nothing is known about Kamrau Bay verbal morphology. Many of Anceaux' verbs are suffixed with /-ra/, and may well be grammatical nominals.


    Loans from neighboring families

    [under construction]

    Visser (1989) discusses the close social interrelationships between Kamrau Bay languages and Irarutu of the Austronesian family. However, only a few loans from Irariutu have been identified, with Irarutu attestations drawn from Voorhoeve (1995) and Proto-Malayo-Polynesian forms which prove the direction of borrowing modified from Blust:

   Kamrau Bay  Irarutu  PMP
 branch  *saGa  saŋgə  *saŋa
 rope  *warak  wara  *waɣadz

    In the first of these, the grapheme <*G> represents a correspondence which is irregular, as medial /*g/ fails to become apical /d/ in Buruwai (above.)

    Walker and Hesse's (1988) vocabulary of Southern Kamberau of Yarona village includes two Malay color terms, presumably borrowed very recently. Unlike the loans listed above, they are not suffixed with the article /-ra/ [-ra -a] which accompanies most nominals and adjectives (above):

   Yarona  Indonesian
 yellow  kuni-kuni  kuniŋ
 green  hidʒau hidʒau  hidʒaᵘ

    The word for "moon" looks very much like a loan from an Austronesian language, but it is not found in Irarutu and is cognate to the Asmat-Kamoro word, so if it is a loan rather than a coincidence it can only have been introduced at a signficantly earlier date than those listed above:

   Kamrau Bay  Asmat-Kamoro  PMP
 moon  *bura  *bura  *bulan

    … Etna Bay …

   Kamrau Bay  Etna Bay  PMP
 salt  *sira  *sira  *qasiɣa
 flesh  *sasi  *sasi  *…


Subpages (2): Buruwai Kamrau