Browsing Holton, Gary by Subject "New Guinea"
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Reassessing the wider genetic affiliations of the Timor-Alor-Pantar languagesThe wider genealogical affiliations of the Timor-Alor-Pantar languages have been the subject of much speculation. These languages are surrounded by unrelated Austronesian languages, and attempts to locate related languages have focused on Papuan languages 800 km or more distant. In this paper we examine three hypotheses for genealogical relatedness, drawing on both pronominal and especially lexical evidence. We rely in particular on recent reconstructions of proto-Alor-Pantar vocabulary. Of the hypotheses evaluated here, we find the most striking similarities between TAP and the West Bomberai family. However, we conclude that the evidence currently available is insufficient to confirm a genealogical relationship with West Bomberai or any other family, and hence, TAP must be considered a family-level isolate.