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When morphemes or words come together, some of the phonemes get changed or deleted. Sometimes, new phonemes are inserted. In Bhumij, when the words ne ‘this’ and sai ‘side’ come together, the phoneme, /e/ of ‘ne’ gets changed into /a/; the same /e/ gets changed into /i/ before the word kin ‘two’. The phoneme /e/ gets changed into /a/ before /a/ and /i/ before /i/. This kind of changes are called vowel harmony.

In the case like maraN+mara+, /p/ is inserted. This is called insertion.

In the cases like lel+e+aiN ‘I will see’, the phoneme /e/ is deleted. This is called deletion. Some of the changes of phonemes in Bhumij are seen below :


[ a ]      [ e ] à O / - (a) 

The final vowel [a,e] of a morpheme gets deleted when the intial vowel of the following morpheme if [a] as shown below:
hiju+ga+a?e à  hijuga?e ‘[he] will come’
seno+ga+a?e à   senoga?e ‘[he] will go’
ir+e+aiŋ à iraiŋ ‘[I] will cut’
nu+e+ape à nuape ‘[I] will drink’
lel+e+aiŋ à  lelaiŋ ‘[I] will see’


[i] à O / - + i

The final vowel [i] is deleted when there is another [i] in the initial position of the following morpheme as shown below :
ni+i? à  ni?  ‘this’


[e] à [i] / - i

The vowel [e] becomes [i] when the following morpheme has [i] as shown below :
ne+i? à  ni+i? à ni? ‘this (animate being)’
en+i? à  in+i? à ini? ‘that (animate being)’
ne+kin à ni+kin à nikin ‘these two’
ne+kin à  ni+kin à nikin ‘these two’


[e] à [a] / - + ca

The vowel [e] becames [a] when the following morpheme has [a] preceded by a consonant as shown below:
ne+sai à  na+sai  à nasai ‘this side’


[O] à [p] (v)

[p] is inserted when two morphemes come together. Sometimes, a vowel is inserted along-with [p].

dal+dal à   da-p-al àdapal ‘beating each other’
o? + o? à co+p+o?  à copo? ‘kiss each other’
o?+ o? à o+p+o?  à opo? ‘hit each other
ajom+ajom à a+pa+jom àapajom ‘feeding mutually’
huiŋ+huiŋ à hu+pu+iŋ à hupuiŋ ‘small, small’
maraN+maraN à ma+pa+raŋ àmaparaŋ ‘big, big’


[?] à [g] / - +
ma?+en àmagen ‘cut oneself’
o?+en àtogen ‘hit oneself’
sama?+en à samagen ‘cut repeatedly oneself’
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