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There are three tones.

Low tone marked by 

/ \ /

High tone marked by  ///
Mid tone is unmarked.

Phonemes have been established on the basis of the contrasts found among the minimal sounds. Contrasts of various phonemes have been dealt with in this section.

Contrast of Vowels:

Vowels in the language are differentiated on the basis of (i) Tongue position - the part of the tongue taking part in the production of vowels. There are three way contrasts of tongue position - front, central and back, (ii) Tongue heights - there are five relevant heights used in differentiating these vowels viz. high, lower-high, mid, lower-mid and low and (iii) Lip position-on the basis of this all the vowels are classed into unrounded and rounded. The contrasts of vowels are given on the basis of the articulator features.

/i/ vs. /I/


‘a Muslim-festival’: 



/nit/  ‘intention’ :  /nIt/  ‘daily’
/I/ vs. /e/


mole, sesame : 



/kIlo/  ‘fort, castle’ :  /kelo/  ‘banana’
/e/ vs. //


‘court yard’: 




 ‘what’ : 

/k ‘vomit’


‘give’ : 

/d ‘and, then’
// vs. //


‘foot’ : 




‘back part of

the neck’ :

 /ki/ ‘beam’

/e/ vs. //


‘one’ : 


‘a plant’


‘creeper’ : 



// vs. /a/


‘this year’ : 


‘shall come’ (I.p)


‘foot’ : 

/par/  across’


‘jujbe, enmity’ : 

/bar/  Saturday’
 // vs. /a/


‘mango’ : 


‘common, usual’


‘voice, throat’ : 

/sango/  ‘field, a

wooden tool

with two

horns used to

carry thorns’


‘tooth’ :

 /dand/  ‘bullock’
/a/ vs. //


‘fence’ : 


‘banyan tree’


‘tea’ :  /c ‘drip’


‘this’ (fem) :

 /y this’ (mas.)
 /u/ vs. /U/


‘powder’ : 





‘lie’ : 






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