(Many thanks to Pariya, a little artist for 'the man from the ancient time')
This paper is the conclusion of the historical linguistics study on the relationship between Tai-Kadai and Austronesian under the name of ‘คนพูดไท’ (The story of people who speak Tai-Kadai). The study has been made thorough Tai and Indonesian languages and mainly focused on the etymological point of view, in particular, the correlation of subsurface etyma, of which may be different from the mainstream studies. However, the subsurface etyma study has provided the interesting results; at least 32 cross-correlated monosyllabic roots have been identified. These roots are interpreted as very ancient as the proto-form of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai or even the earlier date. They are, in fact, considered as the grandparent of disyllabic words in Proto-Austronesian as well as in Proto-Tai-Kadai. They are the roots that can explain the history of Tai-Kadai and Austronesian very well and the most interesting is that they are the strong evidence in proving the existence of Austro-Tai.
Keywords: monosyllabic root, Tai-Kadai, Austronesian, Austro-Tai
บทความนี้เป็นข้อสรุปของการศึกษาเรื่องความสัมพันธ์ระหว่างตระกูลภาษาไท-กะไดและออสโตรนีเซียน ผ่านคำพูดของไท-ไตและอินโดนีเซียเป็นหลัก ผ่านการค้นหาและเปรียบเทียบเหง้าคำและความหมายดั้งเดิมที่ลงลึกถึงรากแก้วเป็นการเฉพาะ ซึ่งเข้าใกล้กับ ‘ศัพทมูลวิทยา’ มากกว่าศาสตร์แขนงอื่น อันเป็นเส้นทางสาขาที่ค่อนข้างแตกต่างจากแนวทางการศึกษากระแสหลักในปัจจุบัน หากการศึกษาและตีความจากมุมมองดังกล่าว ได้แสดงผลลัพธ์ที่ค่อนข้างน่าสนใจ เพราะสามารถจัดจำแนกคำโดดที่เรียกว่า ‘monosyllabic root’ ออกมาได้อย่างน้อยถึง 32 คำรากแก้วพยางค์เดียว โดยเป็นรากคำเก่าแก่ขนาดต้นโคตรของทั้งออสโตรนีเซียนและไท-กะได ก่อนจะพัฒนาลงมาเป็นคำสองพยางค์ในภายหลังอย่างมากมาย เป็นรากคำที่สามารถใช้ตอบคำถามเรื่องที่มาของ ‘คนพูดไท’ (The story of people who speak Tai-Kadai) ได้อย่างเป็นเหตุเป็นผลในอีกแนวทางหนึ่ง และยังใช้เป็นหลักฐานบ่งชี้ชั้นดีต่อการพิสูจน์ถึงการมีอยู่ของแนวความคิด ‘ออสโตร-ไท’ ตั้งแต่ครั้งบรรพกาลได้อย่างมีนัยยะสำคัญ
คำสำคัญ: คำรากแก้วพยางค์เดียว, ไท-กะได, ออสโตรนีเซียน, ออสโตร-ไท
A monosyllabic root in Austronesian languages has been recognized for a long time and has been identified by the present scholars, such as Robert A. Blust, R. David Zorc, John U. Wolff, etc. in the past 20 - 30 years. However, there are very few applications have been carried out so far. It is a kind of independent phenomenon and very ancient in Austronesian linguistics studies. It has embedded in the disyllabic words, mostly and has been found mainly in Philippine and Malay-Indonesian languages with some in Kavalan of Formosan.
In The Austronesian monosyllabic root, radical or phonestheme, 1990, R. David Zorc has noted something important that:
‘Monosyllabic roots’ are here taken to be equivalent to phonesthemes (e.g., *buk ‘pound’, *suk ‘enter’), not a functors (e.g., *si ‘name marker’, *ni ‘agentive, possessive’, *na ‘ligature, apposition’, etc.)
The isolation of a monosyllabic root can lead to the disambiguation of a proto-form. Thus, an ambiguously reconstructed PMP *pi(cs)ík ‘sprinkle, as water with the fingers’, may be modified to PMP *picík if M1 rǝcek ‘sprinkle with rosewater; speckled with gold’ is brought into the comparison and the root *cík is established (Blust, in press).
The identification of a monosyllabic root can lead to the correction of correspondence sets. Thus Jv baTik ‘fabric worked by the batik process’ must be secondarily developed because it is incompatible with Jv patik ‘spots, freckles’ on the basis of internal evidence alone, and all the more so if compared with Pai vǝtsik, Kel bǝtik ‘tattoo’. The root here is PAN *Cik (and not *Tik).
John U. Wolff has indicated a monosyllable as a proto-form of Austronesian as per the name of The monosyllabic roots of Proto-Austronesian, 1999. He has strongly argued Blust’s reconstruction for word ‘eat’ as a disyllabic root in PAn – *kaen in The Philippine languages and the determination of PAN syllable structure, 2005 that:
However, I argue that the development of *kaen is the product of independent innovations in languages of Taiwan and Philippine. In the case of *kan and others like it, I argue that these were not disyllabic roots in PAN but rather that they were monosyllabic root in PAN, and that the disyllabic forms are the product of the process of syllable-internal lengthening which took place independently and repeatedly in post-PAN times throughout the range of the AN languages (Wolff 1999).
E.M. Kempler Cohen has also identified a monosyllabic root as the early Austronesian morphemes reconstructed under the Uniform-Root thesis in Fundaments of Austronesian roots and etymology, 1999.
Robert A. Blust has identified 231 roots of monosyllables in Austronesian root theory: an essay on the limits of morphology, 1988 but rather concludes that they are a kind of wild weed which happen in an ancient time and invaded to the Austronesian garden as mentioned by R. David Zorc in the same article above that:
Blust concludes that “the phonestheme might be described as a weed in the garden of language - an invader of boundaries which from time immemorial has sprouted wild between the cultivated patches of contrast-defined linguistic units” (Blust 1988:62). Three phenomena of which I am aware give evidence that these ‘weeds’ have enjoyed an independent existence in the Austronesian garden:
Recently, however, Robert A. Blust has written to a monosyllabic root in The Austronesian languages Chapter 6 Section 6.2 Submorphemes that:
Before continuing, however, it will be worthwhile to consider the phenomenon that has long been recognized in the AN languages of insular of Southeast Asia. The Swiss linguist Renward Brandstetter (1916) used the term ‘Wurzeln’ (roots) to describe submorphemic sound-meaning correlations that are common in many languages of Indonesia and the Philippines, and in at least some of Formosan languages. These elements usually take the form –CVC, and can be illustrated by Malay disyllables that end in –pit (from Blust 1988a):
Blust (1988a) identified 231 roots of this type that are found in at least four etymologically independent (non-cognate) morphemes. Of these, *-pit ‘press, squeeze together; narrow’ is the best-supported, with 48 etymologically independent attestations, followed by *-keC ‘adhesive, sticky’ with 44, *-tik ‘ticking sound’ with 38, *-tuk ‘knock, pound, beat’ with 36, *-kaŋ ‘spread apart, as the legs’ with 34, and *-pak ‘slap, clap’ with 32. Several other scholars have written on this topic since 1988, in particular Nothofer (1990) and Zorc (1990).
Morphemes that contain a root thus typically consist of a formative plus –CVC root of generalized meaning.
These ‘root family’ are of general interest because they appear to violate a fundamental and widely accepted principle of binarity.
And in final he closes the section with words of:
Finally, both monosyllabic roots and more abstract pattern of submorphemic sound-meaning correlation (Gestalt symbolism, etc.) raise fundamental questions about the nature of cross-generational language transmission. In learning a first language children acquire morphemes, together with patterns of word-formation, and syntax. But the type of knowledge that is transmitted with submorphemes appears to be different from any of these. If submorphemic sound-meaning correlations are distributed over a member of genetically related languages in non-cognate morphemes one must ask how such patterns can be transmitted independently of the forms that exemplify them. There are two logical possibilities: 1) they are transmitted in sets of morphemes which contain a recurrent submorphemic sound-meaning correlation that is then extended to neologisms, or 2) the abstract pattern itself is internalized. Much works clearly remains to be done before satisfactory answers can be brought to bear on this question.
In Tai-Kadai languages, as I know in Siamese studies, there are some studies for a group of sound-meaning correlations but there is no such a research of monosyllabic root before. The difficulty is that how can we isolate a monosyllabic root out from the monosyllabic/sesquisyllabic world?. But this is a crucial point since a monosyllabic root of Austronesian is treated as very old as proto-form and if the same kind could be identified in Tai-Kadai either, it would be considered as one of the strong evidences in proving the existence of Austro-Tai.
In ‘คนพูดไท’ (The story of people who speak Tai-Kadai), I have approached by trying to identify the abstract or generalized or fundamental meaning of each monosyllabic candidate in which is embedded in disyllabic words in Indonesian with many thanks to Kamus Besar Bahasa Indonesia, 2012 and after finalized, a cross-correlation has been made to Tai-Kadai monosyllabic root of which identified from database as much as they are available. In order to avoid the recent borrowing words into Siamese, at least the candidate root must refer to Tai with many thanks to the works of Pittayawat Pittayaporn on The Phonology of Proto-Tai, 2009 and Austronesian Basic Vocaburary Database, 2008 (Greenhill, S.J., Blust. R, & Gray, R.D. 2008.).
At least 32 monosyllabic roots (from about 200 words) have been identified and cross-correlated between Austronesian (Malay-Indonesian) and Tai-Kadai (Tai). Many of them can be executed from initial and medial l- and r- sound as well as from others, such as initial b-, d-, k-, n-, p-, s-, t-, w- and y-. Many of them tend to express a pair-like property, such as male vs female, elder vs younger, etc. The form of monosyllabic root can be either of CVC or CV both in Austronesian and Tai-Kadai.
The interesting is that they can give an alternative explanation to the current controversial issues between Austronesian and Tai-Kadai, such as a root of word ‘bird’ in the ancient time which could be identified into 3 kinds, such as *qayam a bird who is lazy to fly, *manuk a bird who has a hump and *buruŋ a bird who is never flying low and a root of numerals 1-10 in Austronesian which can be deeper identified as quinary system. Some of them can isolate word for ‘child’ from word for ‘male’ and word for ‘water’ from word for ‘inside’ with another proposal that *n should be the proto-form of medial position in *aNak and *daNum, not *N. Some can also connect word for ‘moon’ with word for ‘road/path’ with a new proposal that final *N in *bulaN should be replaced by *n. Some can be interpreted as a root of marriage culture in Austronesian and Tai-Kadai. Even some of them can indicate the ancient living environment of the people who spoke these kinds of languages.
2. Austronesian – Tai-Kadai monosyllabic roots
As of latest study, a total of 32 cross-correlated monosyllabic roots of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai that can be identified seem to have the same prototype. These prototypes might have a very deep root, perhaps up to Austro-Tai or even beyond. A list of cross-correlated monosyllabic roots with abstract meaning and previous identifications, if any, as well as related Swadesh’s basic word number in bracket is shown as per below:
*ba be overwhelmed, be dominated, (Cohen –to carry, Swadesh –16. woman and 17. man)
*baŋ a sheet-like body, (Wolff –fly)
*bu to arise, (Cohen –round, Zorc –open, Swadesh –73. moon and 86. mountain)
*buŋ be gathered together, to connect each other, (Zorc –ridge, hollow conduit)
*duŋ maternal as a womb, pair with *tuŋ (Zorc *duŋ –sit, *Duŋ –shade, shelter)
*gun peak, be pampered, (Swadesh –86. mountain)
*gem/ kam (*gǝm/ kǝm) be united, (Blust *gǝm –fist and *kǝm –enclose, Cohen and Wolff *gem –fist, Zorc *gǝm –fist and *kǝm –enclose, Swadesh –48. hand)
*kit pointed such as a horn, (Blust –join along the length, Swadesh –34. horn and 86. mountain)
*lay to braid, pair with *ray (Zorc *lay –hang)
*lak male trait such as to separate, clever, aggressive, (Zorc –go, walk, Swadesh –10. many and 17. man)
*lam/lum (*lem) inside, water properties and dark, proposed to pair with *ram/rum (Blust *lem –dark, Cohen *lem –soft, weak, moist, tired, Wolff *lem –night and darkness, Zorc *lem –dark, Swadesh –91. black and 92. night)
*lan to move back and forth along a route or a long space, (Swdesh –14. long, 55. eat, 73. moon and 85. path)
*laŋ empty, atmosphere, (Wolff –placed lengthwise)
*lap to twinkle, flashing, sneaky, gloomy (Blust and Zorc –flash, sparkle)
*law forebear, in outline, all mixed together, proposed to pair with *raw (Swadesh –9. all, 19. fish and 38. head)
*lu to pass through, (Cohen –soft, Swadesh –37. hair and 38. head)
*nak softness and lively
*nuk a hump-like body (Swadesh –20. bird and 51. breasts)
*nam/num a water body (Swadesh –54. drink and 75. water)
*pak a slab-like body, a stopper (Blust and Zorc –clap, slap, break, crack, spilt)
*pu to arise, very similar to *bu (Cohen –master, lord, Wolff –grandparent, Zorc –master, lord, Swadesh –19. fish)
*puŋ to exhale, to puff, much related with *buŋ (Blust and Zorc –bunch, cluster, Swadesh –49. belly)
*ray to braid, pair with *lay
*rak to be separated, pair with *lak
*ran to move back and forth along a route or a long space, pair with *lan (Swadesh –14. long, 55. eat, 73. moon and 85. path)
*ruŋ an arc, proposed to pair with *luŋ (Swadesh –98. round)
*sa myself, caused to exist as a single (Swadesh –11. one and 16. woman)
*tuŋ paternal as a protector, pair with *duŋ (Zorc –layer (over))
*wa to spread over, to cover the area (Swadesh –16. woman and 17. man)
*waŋ very large, very wide (Zorc –open, clear, Swadesh –13. big)
*yam to tread, to repeat (Swadesh –65. walk)
*jut/ɲut (*ñut) to stretch (Blust *ñut –stretchy, elastic)
There are 7 roots that can correspond with Robert Blust’s monosyllabic roots, including *gem/kam –be united, *kit –pointed, such as a horn, *lam/lum –inside, water properties and dark, *lap –to twinkle, flashing, sneaky, *pak –a slab-like body, a stopper, *puŋ –to exhale, to puff, and *jut/ɲut –to stretch. However, I have no chance to read details on identification by Blust (1988a), but some of them seem to have minor differences in term of interpretation of generalized meaning as follows:
I have interpreted as a slender form with a pointing tip whereas Blust has identified as join along the length. A pointing tip is important for this root because it controls the form of reflex words, such as ‘เขา – khawA1’ –horn and mountain, Proto-Tai – *qawA, ‘bukit’ –mountain and ‘sakit’ –fever in Indonesian; ‘sakit’ = myself is horned.
Blust’s identification as *lem –dark might be a specific meaning within *lam/lum root, the wider meaning of this root is of inside, water properties and dark, which is one property of inside.
The generalized sense of this root at the time of construction of disyllabic form might be rather a combination of sound and a game stopper or a breaker than a pure sound of slap, for example, ‘tepak - təpak’ –clap, the clap is caused to exist by an impact of 2 hands moving in opposite direction, ‘tapak’ –ledge, the ledge under water is a slab-like body for slowdown a deep slope or the dock is a slab-like body for resting a boat or the breakwater is a slab-like body for stopping the wave direction and ‘พัก – phakD2’ –to rest, Proto-Tai – *bakD.
There are 6 roots that correspond with E.M. Kempler Cohen’s roots, including *ba –be overwhelmed, be dominated, *bu –to arise, *gem/kam –be united, *lam/lum –inside, water properties and dark, *lu –to pass through and *pu –to arise. I would like to give some observations that:
Cohen gives a meaning as round which is different from my interpretation as to arise, for example, ‘bulan’ –moon has the abstract mean of arising and then floating away and ‘burung’ –bird has the abstract meaning of arising out of the nest.
*lem in a sense of soft, weak, moist, tired should not cover the generalized sense but is considered as a part of inside and water properties.
In a sense of soft as given by Cohen, it is quite different from a sense of pass through, such as ‘hulu’ –head, upstream, ‘dahulu’ –early and ‘lalu’ –pass, the past and ‘ลุ – luA2’ –pass through in Tai (Siamese). A sense of soft is expressed in word ‘bulu’ –fur, along with a sense of pass through.
As master or lord, it is considered as a specific form, not a generalized meaning, which is, the same as *bu, to arise, such as ‘pulau’ –island, something arises out of the sea, ‘empu - əmpu’ –earlier arising, ‘พุ – phuA2’ –fountain, spurt, ‘ปุด – putD1’ –spurt, ‘ผู้ – phu:C1’ –person, ‘ฟู – fu:A2’ –to float, Proto-Tai – *wu:A and ‘ปู่ – pu:B1’ –grandfather in Tai, (as referred by some scholars).
I have found that 5 roots can be related with John U. Wolff’s identifications, such as *baŋ –a sheet-like body, *gem/kam –be united, *lam/lum –inside, water properties and dark, *laŋ –empty, atmosphere, and *pu –to arise. Observation may be made to *baŋ; in a sense of fly, it should be a subset of a sheet-like body, for example, ‘kambang’ –something is afloat on the surface of water, ‘bangkit’ –up stand and ‘บาง – ba:ŋA1’ –thin, Proto-Tai – *C̥.ba:ŋA
Among others, R. David Zorc’s monosyllabic roots are the most that can be related with, including *bu –to arise, *buŋ –be gathered together, to connect each other, *duŋ –parentage as a womb, *gem/kam –be united, *lay –to braid, *lam/lum –inside, water properties and dark, *lap –to twinkle, flashing, sneaky, *pak –a slab-like body, a stopper, *pu –to arise, *puŋ –to exhale, to puff, *tuŋ –parentage as a protector, *waŋ –very large, very wide and some notes are taken as follows:
As Zorc’s identification, ridge and hollow conduit are a concrete form of be gathered together and the other expressions are, for example, ‘sambung’ –to connect, ‘gabung’ –gathering, ‘bubung’ – house ridge, ‘บุง – buŋA1’ –basket and ‘มุง – muŋA2’ –house roof, Proto-Tai – *mwuŋA. *mw should be a reflection of b- sound in *buŋ with a strong supported by Kam-Sui; Mulam and Southern Dong who use initial m- sound in muŋ.1 for basket as well as roof (Ilya Peiros, 1998). This root is very interesting because it implies a co-ancient house structure between Austronesian and Tai-Kadai.
As Zorc’s identification, if ‘sit’ means to a stay still situation, it would fit very well with a sense of maternal; a stay still place before birthing, such as ‘kandung’ –pouch, clan, ‘undung’ –grandmother, ‘bedung – bəduŋ’ –diaper, ‘ledung – ləduŋ’ –bend down, ‘ดั้ง – daŋC1’ –ancestor and ‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ –winnowing basket, Proto-Tai – *doŋC, of which is an important cultural material related to a birthing ceremony in Tai.
I interpret that Zorc's *lay –hang should have the same root with *lay, the sense of hang or hanging is well compliant with a generalized sense of braid, for example, ‘belai – bəlaj’ –to persuade someone is to find a cooperation among many by a soft mean, not by a hard mean, ‘kelaj – kəlai’ –to moor the boat , ‘lelai – ləlaj’ –hanging down, even ‘balaj’ –a hall, the common place for a purpose of association, ‘คลาย – khla:jA2’ –to loosen, ‘ลุ่ย – lujB2’ –unbound and ‘ลาย – la:jA2’ –weave pattern, Proto-Tai – *C̬.la:jA, which is made by a crossing process of yarns.
Interestingly, there have been 2 monosyllabic roots identified by 4 professors as *gem/kam and *lam/lum and 1 monosyllabic root identified by 3 of them as *pu, except Blust. I have no dispute for *gem/kam, however, the definition of abstract sense for *lam/lum and *pu has made differences between professors and myself. As for *lam/lum, the root identified by professors is *lem with abstract sense of dark, night (Blust, Wolff and Zorc) and soft, weak, moist and tired (Cohen) of which I have interpreted that they are a part of *lam/lum under the name of guardian master who rules out the inside, water properties and darkness. And as for *pu, Cohen, Wolff and Zorc have meant to master, lord and grandparent whom are the same person as ancestor. This ancestor, in fact, is a specific form innovated from abstract *pu –to arise or to be first arose. Apart, 19 cross-correlated monosyllabic roots, accounting for as much as 60%, are coincided with either 1 of 4 distinct identifications.
3. Monosyllabic root in basic vocabulary
Out of 32 cross-correlated monosyllabic roots, up to 20 roots can be compared with 26 words of Swadesh’s 100 basic word list, accounting for 81%. The key point is that all of them are the roots of disyllabic words as well as the roots of basic vocabulary, such as numerals, body part terms, nature terms, living society terms, basic animals and basic verbs, of which shall be explained accordingly.
Based on the PAn numerals *esa/isa-1’, *duSa-2, *telu-3, *Sepat-4, *lima-5, *enem-6, *pitu-7, *walu-8, *Siwa-9 and *sa-puluq-10 (Robert Blust, 2013), I have found that 7 of 10 are reconstructed from cross-correlated monosyllabic roots, such as *lu, *nam/num, *pu, *sa and *wa. The PAn numerals have been re-interpreted as quinary system which can be divided into two parts as numbers 1-5, a core or a root or a family body and numbers 6-10, a meat surrounded or a formative or an environment surrounded, in this case, meaning to people who lived in a water dominated circumstance. The philosophy of counting is of: starting point >> having a direction >> getting through >> almost there >> be united. Therefore, numerals can be made in order as: 1- starting point, 2-having a direction, 3-getting through, 4-almost there and 5-be united of the family body, and then 5+1 = 6-starting point, 5+2 = 7-having a direction, 5+3 = 8-getting through, 5+4 = 9-almost there and 5+5 = 10-be united of the family and the environment that surrounded.
They have expressed pair characteristics as: *esa/isa-1 vs *enem-6, *duSa-2 vs *pitu-7, *telu-3 vs *walu-8, *Sepat-4 vs *Siwa-9, and *lima-5 vs *sa-puluq-10. Each pair is strongly supported by their base meaning, for example, a pair of number 3 – *telu vs 8 – *walu. *telu has a root from *te + *lu; the core is *lu, which means something passed from one point to another point; *lu itself can identify the meaning of *telu as a reproduction of number 1 – *esa/isa and 2 – *duSa or as a child. *walu has a root from *wa + *lu; *wa means something spreading an influence over the others; *walu, then, means a reproduction of number 6 – *enem and 7 – *pitu or as a flooding plain. Another pair is number 5 – *lima and 10 – *sa-puluq. *lima is well known to have a root from 5 fingers and a fist and *sa-puluq could be interpreted from *sa + *pu + *lu as many rivers have passed through and been united as a mother sea, where *sa means a single or myself, *pu means to arise and *lu means pass through.
There are disyllabic words of body part terms in Austronesian (Indonesian) and Tai-Kadai (Tai) that have been constructed from *ba, *duŋ, *gem/kam, *kit, *law, *lu, *nuk and *puŋ. They are the important parts of human body, such as head to think and direct all organs, nose to breath, chest to breed, genital to make love and reproduce, hand to fist, shoulder to carry, fang to eat and belly to be full as described below:
*ba as shoulder: ‘bahu’ in Indonesian < *ba + hu, PAn – *qabaʀa; compared to ‘บ่า – ba:B1’ –shoulders of a slave, Proto-Tai – *C̥.ba:B
*duŋ as nose: ‘hidung’ in Indonsian < hi + *duŋ, PAn (Zorc) – *ijúŋ; compared to ‘ดั้ง – daŋC1’, Proto- Tai – *ɗaŋA
*gem/kam as fist: ‘genggam’ < gəŋ + *gem/kam, PAn – *gemgem; compared to ‘กำ – kamA1’ –fist and to hold, Proto-Tai – *kamA and related word ‘คำ – khamA2’ –say, word, speech, bite, Proto-Tai – *gamA
*kit as horn and fang: a related word in Indonesian ‘gigit’ –bite < gi + *kit; compared to ‘เขา – khawA1’ –horn, Proto-Tai – *qawA, ‘เขี้ยว – khiǝwC1’ –fang, Proto-Tai – *χe:wC and ‘กัด – katD1’ –bite, Proto-Tai – *katD
*law as head and hair knot: no such word in Indonesian, but related with ‘galau’ –all combines or mixed up < ga as formative + *law as a root, ‘balau’ –all mixed up < ba + *law; compared to ‘เกล้า – klawC1’–head/hair knot, the place to centralize a human being and tie up a messy hair, Proto-Tai – *klawC/*krawC (Disyllables have merged to be sesquisyllable of k + *law.)
*lu as head: ‘hulu’ < hu + *lu in Indonesian, PAn – *qulu; compared to ‘หัว – huaA1’, Proto-Tai – *truǝA (*lu has lost its root position and some modification in Proto-Tai might be required.)
*nuk as genital: ‘nonok’ – women genital in Indonesian < no + *nuk; compared to ‘อก – ʔokD1’ –chest, Proto-Tai – *ʔɤkD and related word ‘โหนก – no:kD1’ –protruding, Proto-Tai – *hno:kD
*puŋ as belly: no such word in Indonesian, but related with ‘apung’ –to float on the water < a + *puŋ or ‘gembung’ –to full up < *gem/kam + *buŋ; compared to ‘ปุง – puŋA1’ and ‘พุง – phuŋA2’ –belly in Tai
The nature terms that have been constructed from roots, such as *bu, *duŋ, *gun, *kit, *lay, *lam/lum, *lan, *laŋ, *lap, *law, *nam/num, *pak, *pu, *ray, *ruŋ, *tuŋ and *waŋ are so many and cover from the sky, moon, night, lightning, land, mountain, field, to water, river, and until the sea. The examples are presented below:
*bu and *lan as moon: ‘bulan’ < *bu + *lan in Indonesian, PAn – *bulaN (the final position to be re-proposed as *n); compared to Proto-Tai – *ɓlɯənA
*bu and *kit as mountain: ‘bukit’ < *bu + *kit; compared to ‘เขา – khawA1’ in Tai
*duŋ, *tuŋ as field: very much related with ‘kandung’ –pocket, sac, pouch < kan + *duŋ; compared to ‘ทุ่ง – thuŋB2’ –field, Proto-Tai – *doŋB
*gun as mountain peak: ‘gundang’ –crag < *gun + daŋ, ‘gunung’ –mountain < *gu(n) + nuŋ; compared to ‘ขุน – khunA1’ –mountain, peak in Tai
*lay, *ray as braided river: related with ‘belai’ –to persuade, to coordinate < bə + *lay, ‘balai’ –association, disarranged market < ba + *lay, ‘kalai’ –to ease < ka + *lay, ‘berai’ –separated < bə + *ray, ‘birai’ –edge, river bank < bi + *ray, ‘ngarai’ –canyon < ŋa + *ray; compared to ‘ไหล – lajA1’ –to stream, to flow, ‘สาย – sa:jA1’ –flow in Tai (The medial *l/*r of *lai/*rai root in ‘สาย – sa:jA1’ may have lost and merged with the formative.)
*lam/lum as inside, water properties and darkness: ‘dalam’ –inside < da + *lam/lum, PAn – *i-dalem or ‘malam’ –night < ma + *lam/lum; compared to ‘ล้ำ – lamC2’ –inside, beyond, ‘ลุ่ม – lumB2’ or ‘หล่ม – lomB1’–lowland, Proto-Tai – *lɤmB, ‘คล้ำ – khlamC2’ –dark, ‘กล่ำ – klamB1’ –dark red, Proto-Tai – *klamB, ‘ค่ำ – khamB2’ –nightfall, Proto-Tai – *ɣamB (‘ค่ำ – khamB2’ is monosyllable that was collapsed from ‘คล้ำ – khlamC2’.)
*lan as long open field: ‘landai’ –gentle slope, plain with small slope < *lan + dai and ‘lantai’ – lowland, plain, floor < *lan + tai; compared to ‘ลาน – la:nA2’ –open long field, ‘หลั่น – lanB1’ –gradation in Tai
*laŋ as sky: ‘langit’ –sky < *la(ŋ) + ŋit, PAn – *laŋiC, ‘kalang’ –circumstance < ka + *laŋ; compared to ‘ลาง – la:ŋA2’ –omen (refer to misty), ‘กลาง – kla:ŋA1’ –in the middle of nowhere, Proto-Tai – *kla:ŋA
*lap as lightning: related with ‘cilap’ –twinkle < tʃi + *lap and ‘delap’ –sparkle < də + *lap; compared to ‘แลบ – lɛ:pD2’ –lightning, Proto-Tai – *m.le:pD
*law and *pu as island: ‘pulau’ –island; compared to ‘ปลา –pla:A1’ –fish, Proto-Tai – *pla:A,
*law as sea: ‘laut’ –sea < *la(w) + ʔut; no direct word for sea in Tai, but related with ‘เหล่า – lauB1’ –group, ‘เลา – lauA2’ –dimly, in outline, ‘เงา – ŋauA2’ –blurredly, Proto-Tai – *ŋawA (‘เงา – ŋauA2’ is a good sample of 2 collapsed stages from disyllabic form to sesquisyllabic form and to monosyllabic form.)
*nam/num as water body: ‘minum’ –drink water < mi + *num, Proto-Malayo-Polynesian – *danum and PAn – *daNum; compared to ‘น้ำ – namC2’, Proto-Tai - *C̬.namC (The medial position is re-proposed to be *n.)
*pak as ledge: ‘tapak’ –ledge < ta + *pak; compared to related word ‘พัก – phakD2’ –to rest, Proto-Tai – *bakD
*ruŋ as dawn: related with ‘kurung’ –cabin, cage, prison, bracket < ku + *ruŋ; compared to ‘รุ่ง – ruŋB2’ –dawn, Proto-Tai – *roŋB (The deeper sense is horizon where 360˚ curved (arc) can be viewed.)
*waŋ as open wide field or large pond: ‘awang’ –large open space between the sky and the land < a + *waŋ, ‘sawang’ –wide, large < *sa + *waŋ; compared to ‘กว้าง – kwa:ŋC1’ –wide open land, ‘ข่วง – khuaŋB1’ –open land and ‘วัง – waŋA2’ –large pond in Tai (Many scholars have classified ‘กว้าง – kwa:ŋC1’ as a borrowed word from Chinese; even Laurent Sagart (1993) has taken PAn – *bawaŋ –open expanse of land or water to correlate with Chinese – *gwaŋ –lake, pool, but I would like to argue that it is a subset of *waŋ, the cross-correlated monosyllabic root of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai, who loaned to Old Chinese.)
Living society terms can be well determined from roots, such as *ba, *duŋ, *lak, *law, *nak, *pu, *sa, *tuŋ, *wa. The disyllabic words constructed from the roots have pointed to a very primitive society including forebear, maternal ancestor, paternal ancestor, grandparent, male, unmarried man, unmarried woman and child. A short explanation of society terms are presented as follows:
*law as source, forebear, master: related word ‘alau’ –hornbill < a + *law (a big bird, respected by Dayak), ‘telau’ –spot, source < tə + *law; compared to ‘เหล่า – lauB1’ –source, group, ‘เหง้า – ŋauC1’ –clan, ancestry, ‘เกล้า – klawC1’ –head, master, Proto-Tai – *klawC, ‘เจ้า – cawC1’ or ‘จ้าว – ca:wC1’ –owner, lord, Proto-Tai – *ɕɤwC and ‘ลาว – Lao –la:wA2’ –the master in Tai
*duŋ as maternal ancestor: ‘kandung’ –pouch, clan < kan + *duŋ, ‘undung’ –grandmother < un + *duŋ; compared to ‘ดั้ง – daŋC1’ –ancestor, ‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ –winnowing basket, Proto-Tai – *doŋC (‘ดั้ง – daŋC1’, ‘kandung’ and ‘undung’ are the ancient mother who always gives a protection to her child.‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ is an important cultural material related to a birthing ceremony in Tai; a new-born baby will be put on ‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ for few days with a rite welcoming him or her to a new world. ‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ will winnow the old world husk out of such baby.)
*tuŋ as paternal ancestor: ‘datung’ –grandfather < da + *tuŋ, ‘gantung’ –hanging < gan + *tuŋ , ‘tunggal’ –to be a single < *tuŋ + gal; understood that *tuŋ in Tai has mixed up with *duŋ, for example, ‘ดั้ง – daŋC1’ as the protector, shield and king post, ‘โต่ง – to:ŋB1’ and ‘โด่ง – do:ŋB1’ –prominent (*duŋ and *tuŋ have worked as a pair of female and male, respectively.)
*pu as grandfather: ‘empu’ –old man, respected people < əm + *pu; compared to ‘ปู่ – pu:B1’ –grandfather, ‘ผู้ – phu:C1’ –person in Tai
*lak as male: ‘laki’ –man, husband < *la(k) + ki, ‘selak’ –bolt < sə + *lak, ‘galak’ –aggressive < ga + *lak; compared to ‘หลัก – lakD1’ –principle, stake, Proto-Tai – *hlakD, ‘ลัก – lakD2’ –to steal, Proto-Tai – *C̮.lakD and ‘ลูก – lu:kD2’ –son, Proto-Tai – *lɯ:kD
*ba and *wa as unmarried man: close relative words in Indonesian ‘bawa’ –to bring along and ‘bawah’ –under, lower < *ba + *wa; compared to ‘บ่าว – ba:wB1’ –groom, slave, unmarried man, Proto-Tai – *ɓa:wB
*sa and *wa as unmarried woman: very close relative word in Indonesian ‘sawah’ –paddy field, rice field < *sa + *wa; compared to ‘สาว – sa:wA1’ –bride, owner, unmarried woman, Proto-Tai – *sa:wA (There is a very old marriage culture in Tai and some place in Indonesian that ‘บ่าว – ba:wB1’ will not be given any estate from his parent, but all to be held by ‘สาว – sa:wA1’; when he has found a candidate ‘สาว – sa:wA1’, he must work hard suchlike a slave in the ‘สาว – sa:wA1’ family until they accepted as a son-in-law. In Philippine languages, they also use asawa or sawa or qasawa –wife, PAn – *qasáwa. It is much coincident among ‘บ่าว – ba:wB1’ and ‘bawa(h)’, and ‘สาว – sa:wA1’, ‘sawah’ and asawa, which leads to a preferable PAn – *bawa and *sawa.)
*nak as child: ‘anak’ –child < a + *nak; compared to ‘ลูก – lu:kD2’ –child, Proto-Tai – *lɯ:kD and ‘อ่อน - ʔɔ:nB1 –soft, Proto-Tai – *ʔwu:nB
There are 2 ancient animals which people are very familiar with, such as bird, a lord of the sky and fish, a lord of the water. Bird and fish strongly reflect the relationship between Austronesian and Tai-Kadai with a different view from mainstream scholars; the view that can stratify who is the elder and who is the younger among Tai-Kadai, Western Malayo-Polynesian and Formosan because they have been lineated from the ancient monosyllabic roots, including *bu, *law, *nuk, *pu, *ruŋ and *yam as per described below:
*bu and *ruŋ as bird: ‘burung’ –high level bird < *bu + *ruŋ, related with ‘sarang’ –nest < *sa + raŋ and ‘sarung’ –a simple skirt, my nest < *sa + *ruŋ; compared to ‘รัง – raŋA2’ –nest in Tai (‘burung’ has a base meaning as something loves to arise its head out of the nest; *bu –to arise and *ruŋ –arc, pair with *luŋ, such as ‘pulung’ –a small round thing, a pellet, ‘kalung’ –collar, ‘kelung’ –concave; ‘burung’ is a kind of bird that always lives on the tree and rarely comes down to the ground.)
*nuk as bird: ‘manuk’ –middle level bird < ma + *nuk, PAn – *manuk, related with ‘punuk’ –hump < *pu + *nuk, ‘nonok’ –woman genital < no + *nuk; compared to ‘นก – nokD2’ –bird, Proto-Tai – *C̬.nokD, related with ‘โหนก – no:kD1’ –protruding, Proto-Tai – *hno:kD, ‘นอก - nɔ:kD2’ –outside, Proto-Tai – *l.no:kD, Proto-Kam-Sui – *ʔnu:k (Ilya Pieros 1998), ‘ออก - ʔɔ:kD1’ –to exist, Proto-Tai – *ʔo:kD (‘manuk’ has a base meaning as something protrudes out of the plain body, or a protruding body; it is interpreted as a kind of bird that spends its time on the tree as well as on the ground.)
*yam as bird: ‘ayam’ –chicken < a + *yam, PAn – *qayam, related with ‘anyam’ –to overlap, to zigzag < an + *yam; compared to related word ‘ย่ำ – jamB2’ –tread’, Proto-Tai – *ɲamB and ‘ย้ำ – jamC2’ – to repeat in Tai (‘ayam’ has a base meaning as something much more likes to walk around than using its wings to fly; it is a kind of lazy bird; Tai-Kadai have borrowed word for ‘chicken’ from other source, but still retained their monosyllabic root very well.)
*pu and *law as fish: a root word ‘pulau’ –island < *pu + *law; compared to ‘ปลา – pla:A1’ –fish, Proto-Tai – *pla:A; Proto-Hlai – *hla: (Norquest), - *alaA (Ostapirat); Proto-Kra – *p-laA; Proto-Kam-Sui – *pa1, or *mprai3 (The relationship between ‘ปลา – pla:A1’ and ‘pulau’ is the early sign that has raised a fundamental question to the ‘Out of Taiwan’ theory; 6 of 9 branches of Formosan coincidently use word for ‘fish’, such as vulaw, quleh, qcurux, baute, kuraw, pulaw, alao, ʔalaw, ciqaw, vutukulu and ʔælaw, of which very similar to Tai-Kadai ‘fish’. The interesting is that all of them, as a ‘fish’ and ‘pulau’ have the same abstract meaning of something arose out of the sea; from *pu + *law. Therefore, it is interpreted that they are the innovation of the island of Western Malayo-Polynesian and based on this innovation, it means that ‘fish’ in Tai-Kadai and Formosan is a daughter language, not the parent. Furthermore, it strongly implies the root of speakers that they were living in a place near to or at the sea with island existed.)
The last application of monosyllabic root is in the field of basic verbs. The roots, such as *gem/kam, *kit, *lay, *lam/lum, *lan, *lap, *nam/num, *yam and *jut/ɲut’ are comprised in words of daily living, including, to hold, to flow, to swim, to walk, to run, to bite, to swallow, to dive, to drink, to sleep, to suck, to make and to make love, of which many of them were already referred to, as follows:
*gem/kam as to hold: ‘menggenggam’ –to grasp, to hold < məŋ + gəŋ + *gem/kam; compared to ‘กำ – kamA1’ –to hold, Proto-Tai – *kamA
*lay as to flow and to swim: no such word in Indonesian, but not in Tai; ‘ไหล – lajA1’ –to stream, to flow, Proto-Tai – *hlwajA and ‘ลอย - lɔ:jA2’, Proto-Tai – *lo:jA
*yam as to walk: related word in Indonesian ‘anyam’ –to overlap, to zigzag < an + jam; compared to ‘ย่ำ – jamB2’ –tread and ‘ย้ำ – jamC2’ – to repeat
*lan as to crawl and to run: ‘jalan’ –to walk, to go, path < dʑa + *lan, PAn – *zalan, ‘lancang’ –to go faster < *lan + tʃaŋ’, ‘lancut’ –to go fast < *lan + tʃut and ‘pelan-pelan’ –go slowly < pə + *lan; compared to ‘แล่น - lɛ:nB2’ –to run, ‘พล่าน – phla:nB2’ –to rush and ‘คลาน – khla:nA2’ –to crawl, Proto-Tai – *g.lwɤ:nA
*lan as to swallow: ‘telan’ –to swallow < tə + *lan; compared to ‘กลืน - klɯ:nA1’ in Tai; Proto-Hlai – *C-la:ɲ –gluttonous (Norquest); Kam-Sui, such as Mulam – hlan.1, Southern Dong – han.1 and Standard Sui – dan.1 –to swallow (Ilya Peiros)
*kit as to bite: ‘gigit’ –to bite < gi + *kit; compared to ‘กัด – katD1’ –to bite in Tai
*lam/lum and *nam/num as to dive: ‘benam’ –embedded < bə + *nam/num, related with ‘dalam’ –inside < da + *lam/lum and ‘rendam’ –to soak < rən + dam; compared to ‘ดำ – damA1’ –to dive, Proto-Tai – *ɗamA, related with ‘ด่ำ – damB1’ to soak
*nam/num as to drink: ‘minum’ –to drink < mi + *nam/num; no direct word in Tai
*lap as to sleep: ‘lelap’ –wakeless < lə + *lap, ‘selap’ –to faint < sə + *lap, very much related with ‘kalap’ –to forget, to lost < ka + *lap and ‘malap’ –gloomy, dim < ma + *lap; compared to ‘หลับ – lapD1’ –to sleep, Proto-Tai – *hlapD and much related with ‘ลับ – lapD1’ –to fade out
*jut/ɲut’ as to suck: ‘kenyut’ < kən + *jut/ɲut and ‘nyunyut’ –to suck < ɲun + *jut/ɲut, related with ‘denyut’ –rhythm, palse < dən + *jut/ɲut and ‘gelayut’ –to swing < gə + la + jut; compared to ‘ดูด – du:tD1’ –to suck, ‘ดวด - duətD1’ –to swill in Tai
*jut/ɲut as make and make love: ‘nyunyut’ –to stretch out < ɲun + *jut/ɲut and ‘ayut’ –make love < a + *jut/ɲut; compared to ‘ยืด - jɯ:tD2’ and ‘เหยียด - jiətD1’ –to stretch out, Proto-Tai – *ʔjiətD, ‘เยอด - jɤ:tD2’ and ‘เยด – je:tD2’ –to make and ‘เย็ด – jetD2’ –to make love in Tai (Word ‘to stretch’ has been used with a sense of ‘to make’ in ancient Tai. Making love must be a very prime activity in human life and it should be universal for Tai-Kadai and Austronesian as referred to by Wolff in The Philippine languages and the determination of PAN syllable structure, (Wolff 2005, p.76), but on *iu and *iyu vowels that:
The Philippine languages provide no evidence for a contrast between *iu and *iyu. Forms which can be reconstructed with one the other of these sequences reflect *iyu (sometimes syncopated to *yu) in the Philippines, Bunun, Amis, and Puyuma from Taiwan show two reflexes for the forms which reflect *i followed by *u, i.e., indicate that PAN possibly had a contrast between *iyu and *iu, but the evidence is not unequivocal.17 Two forms seem to reflect *iyu:
*baɣiyus ‘storm’ Amis faliyos ‘typhoon’, Puyuma vaɣiw ‘typhoon’, Bunun balivus ‘storm’, 18 Tg bagyo ‘typhoon’ (with syncope)
*qiyut ‘sexual intercourse’ Bunun paqui t (with metathesis prior to the development of the /w/ between the *i and *u), Puyuma maħa-ħiyut, Cb ʔiyut, Tg ʔiyot, Ilk yut ‘have intercourse’ (Cb=Cebuano, Tg=Tagalog and Ilk=Iloko –the Author).
In my point of view, *qiyut ‘sexual intercourse’ as referred to is rather not a matter of *iyu vowel, it is a matter of monosyllabic root *jut/ɲut, instead, of which has included ‘to make love’ of Taiwan and Philippine languages within one large umbrella and is one of most ancient cross-correlated monosyllabic root of Tai-Kadai and Austronesian.)
4. A pair-like property in monosyllabic root
There is a quite unique characteristic in the cross-correlated monosyllabic roots as a pair-like property, such as male vs female and older vs younger, etc. The dominance one is initial *l - sound vs *r - sound where *l - sound tends to act like a male and *r - sound tends to act like a female. The root constructed from these two distinct sounds then reflects the male and female properties either. This kind of property can be easier recognized in Indonesian disyllables set than in Tai monosyllable and sesquisyllable set, such as:
*lak vs *rak: to separate
*lak represents a male property and plays a major role in ‘to separate something and rush in or out’ while as *rak represents a female property and plays a major role in ‘to be separated by something’. Let imagine to a form of glove and hand; the glove acts as female who is opened by hand and then enclose the hand within, where the hand acts as male who penetrate within female, as per comparison below:
Indonesian; ‘bulak’ – turbulent water, ‘calak’ – smart talk, clever, ‘galak’ – aggressive, ‘jalak’ – brave, ‘jelak’ – full and almost overflow, ‘lalak’ – to turn on, ‘palak’ – very hot mood, angry, ‘pelak’ – horrible ghost, ‘pilak’ – insidious, ‘selak’ – to open, bolt, latch, in the middle, being forced to exist, ‘talak’ – to separate, ‘telak’ – fully hit, ‘ulak’ – jet stream and ‘walak’ – to point
Tai; ‘หลัก– lakD1’ – stake, ‘สัก – sakD1’ – one or so, any, tattoo, ‘ลัก– lakD2’– to steal, ‘มลาก– mla:kD1’–smart person, patrician, abundant, ‘มาก– ma:kD2’ – many, ‘ทะลัก– (tha)lakD2’ – to spill over, ‘คลั่ก – khlakD2’ – numerously, ‘พลั่ก – phlakD2’ – to overflow, ‘ผลัก – phlakD1’ – to push and ‘หลาก – la:kD1’ – many, to overflow, to rush out
Indonesian; ‘elak’ –tired, ‘gerak’ –transition, ‘jarak’ –gap, distance, ‘lerak’ –decomposed, to loosen, ‘parak’ –separation, ‘serak’ –to straggle, to separate and ‘terak’ –remnant, ash
Tai; ‘พราก – phra:kD2’ –to separate, ‘แรก - rɛ:kD2’ –first separation, ‘แยก - jɛ:kD2’ –to break, ‘แหก - hɛ:kD1’ –to separate, ‘แตก - tɛ:kA1’ –to break and ‘แฮก - hɛ:kD2’ –first separation
The word to word comparison could be well distinguished in Indonesian, such as ‘jalak’ – brave vs ‘jarak’ –gap, distance, ‘palak’ – very hot mood, angry vs ‘parak’ –separation, ‘selak’ – to open, bolt, latch, in the middle, being forced to exist vs serak’ –to straggle, to separate and ‘telak’ – fully hit vs ‘terak’ –remnant, ash. Some could be distinguished in Tai, such as ‘หลัก– lakD1’ –stake vs ‘แรก - rɛ:kD2’ –first separation and ‘พลั่ก – phlakD2’ – to overflow vs ‘พราก – phra:kD2’ –to separate. Each pair of medial *l and *r shows a strong symbol of male and female.
*lay vs *ray: to braid
*lay represents a male and *ray represents a female. *lay is more dominant in ‘to involve or to tighten with something’ whereas *ray is more dominant in ‘to loosen from something’, as described below:
Indonesian; ‘balai’ –association, disarranged market, ‘belai’ –to persuade, to coordinate, ‘halai-balai’ – unruly, chaotic, ‘kalai’ –to ease, ‘kilai’ –to spin the implicated thread, ‘lalai’ –to neglect, careless, ‘lelai’ –to hang with
Tai; ‘ไถล – thlajB1’ –to slip, ‘ไถ – thajB1’ –to plow (collapsed from ‘ไถล – thlajB1’), ‘ป่าย –pa:jB1’ –to climb, ‘ไพล่ – phlajB2’ –to cross, ‘ลาย – la:jA2’ –to make pattern;
Indonesian; ‘berai’ –to divide, ‘cerai’ –to divorce, ‘curai’ –to lossen, ‘kirai’ –to separate, stripe, to fan, to winnow, ‘larai’ –to divide, to separate from each other, ‘ngarai’ –canyon and ‘urai’ –to open
Tai; ‘โรย – ro:jA2’ –to fade and ‘รุ่ย – rujB2’ –to unravel
In Tai, many of *l - and *r - sound have been mixed up, such as ‘คลาย – khla:jA2’ –to loosen, ‘กลาย – kla:jA1’ – to transform, to become, ‘ร้อย – rɔ:jC2’ –to thread, ‘ลุ่ย – lujB2’ –to loosen. The *l - male word vs *r - female word could be compared, such as ‘belai’ –to persuade vs ‘berai’ –to divide, ‘kilai’ –to spin the implicated thread vs ‘kirai’ –to separate, stripe, to fan, to winnow, ‘lalai’ –to neglect, careless vs ‘larai’ –to divide, to separate from each other.
*luŋ (proposed) vs *ruŋ: arc
*luŋ is a monosyllabic root of Indonesian, but, so far, no sufficient evidence has been recognized in Tai. If it is proved to exist, the pair would be completed and will be another cross-correlated monosyllabic root. *luŋ is more dominant on ‘general meaning or a regional place’ whereas *ruŋ is more dominant on ‘specific meaning or a local place’, as shown below:
Indonesian; ‘kelung’ –curve in side, curve in the middle, ‘gulung’ –roll, ‘palung’ –whirlpool and ‘kalung’ –collar
Indonesian; ‘burung’ –bird, ‘karung’ –sac, ‘kerung’ –cavity and ‘kurung’ –cage, prison, bracket, cabin
Tai; ‘รัง – raŋA2’ –nest and ‘รุ่ง – ruŋB2’ -dawn
*lam/lum vs *ram/rum (proposed): inside, water property and darkness
Both of them are well presented in Indonesian as well as in other Austronesian, but only *lam/lum can be strongly correlated to Tai-Kadai. In Indonesian, *lam/lum represents a male and is much dominant over *nam/num whereas *ram/rum represents a female and is less dominant; it is mainly applied to ‘rumah’ –house.
*law vs *raw (proposed): forebear, all mixed together
In Indonesian, *law vs *raw are another pair that shows characteristics of male and female, clearly. In Tai-Kadai, *law can be well defined, but not *raw. *lau is used in a sense of ‘oldest place in the world, where gathering everything together, source of light and its reflection’ and *raw is used in a sense of ‘concrete material, old hard sound and weaving the thing’ as follows:
Indonsian; ‘alau’ –hornbill as the oldest bird, ‘balau’ –all mixed up, ‘belau’ –bluish grey color, to blur, ‘galau’ –dense, crowd, masses, ‘hilau’ –dancing, to attend the funeral, ‘kilau’ –source of light, ‘laut’ –sea, ‘lauya’ –shaman, ‘lilau’ –to look around, ‘ngalau’ –grotto, ‘palau’ –furrow, mark, ‘silau’ –to dazzle, to blur and ‘telau’ –more bright
Tai; ‘เหล่า – lauA1’ –group, ancestor, ‘เกล้า – kla:wC1’ –head, hair knot, ‘เก่า – kawB1’ –old (perhaps, collapsed from ‘เกล้า – kla:wC1’), ‘เหง้า – ŋauC1’ –ancestor, forebear, ‘เงา – ŋauA2’ –shadow (collapsed from ‘เหง้า – ŋauC1’), ‘กลั้ว - kluəC1’ –to associated with, ‘เคล้า – khlawC2’ –to mix, ‘เลา – lauA2’ –dim, in outline, ‘สลัว – sluəA1’ –dim and ‘หลัว – luəA1’ -dim
Indonesian; ‘arau’ –spoted, mottle, ‘derau’ –loud noise, ‘garau’ –large and deep (in sound), ‘jerau’ –dark red, ‘karau’ –to mix up, ‘kerau’ –basket, ‘kirau’ –raw and hard (fruit), ‘larau’ –to distress, to cry, ‘parau’ –hoarse, husky, ‘pirau –grey color, ‘raut’ –to sleek, to make shape, ‘sarau’ –large basket, ‘serau’ –apart, aloof, wide (in weaving) and ‘terau’ –to pull the thread from a spindle
I think that *r in *raw in Tai or Tai-Kadai has heavily been merged with *l, such as ‘เหลา – lauA1’ –to sleek, to make shape, ‘เกลา – klauA1’ –to chamfer, to make a smooth shape, ‘เกา – kauA1’ –to scratch (supposed to collapse from ‘เกลา – klauA1’), Proto-Tai – *kawA; however, some remnant may still be recognized in Siamese, such as ‘คร่าว – khra:wB2’ –roughly, approximately, ‘คราว – khra:wA2’ –time, generation, age, ‘ราว – ra:wA2’ –time (supposed to collapse from ‘คราว – khra:wA2’). Apart from above, as seen that many words of *raw have involved with weaving, such as ‘kerau’ –basket, ‘raut’ –to sleek, to make shape, ‘sarau’ –large basket, ‘serau’ –apart, aloof, wide (in weaving) and ‘terau’ –to pull the thread from a spindle; these lead me to the name of some weaving accessories in Tai, such as ‘ตะกอ - takɔ:A1’ –heddle and ‘หลา – la:A1’ –spindle and further to a verb ‘สาว – sa:wA1’ –to pull, of which is different from ‘สาว – sa:wA1’ –unmarried woman. If they are proved to be native Tai, not borrowed words, *raw, therefore, may be considered as another cross-correlated monosyllabic root.
Beside, male word vs female word can also be identified in Indonesian, such as ‘galau’ –dense, crowd, masses vs ‘garau’ –large and deep (in sound), ‘kilau’ –source of light vs ‘kirau’ –raw and hard (fruit), ‘laut’ –sea vs ‘raut’ –to sleek, to make shape, ‘palau’ –furrow, mark vs ‘parau’ –hoarse, husky, ‘telau’ –more bright vs ‘terau’ –to pull the thread from a spindle.
In a word kind, there is also a support for *l - male and *r - female, for example, ‘luang’ vs ‘ruang’, they have the same fundamental as a space, but ‘luang’ is used in a sense of larger space, such as empty, wide space on earth, wide space in public with no specific owner, of which is well correlated to ‘หลวง– luǝŋA1’ – big, large, place in public in Tai, Proto-Tai – *hluǝŋA. Whereas ‘ruang’ is used in a sense of smaller space, such as a house with many rooms, a hall, an office with many section, a bunch, of which is well correlated to ‘รวง– ruǝŋA2’ –ear of paddy, Proto-Tai – *rwɯ:ŋA and ‘โรง – ro:ŋA2’ – a hall, a large place in Tai.
Not only *l - and *r - sound that present a pair-like property, *t - and *d - sound are at least recognized this property in *tuŋ and *duŋ who express a symbol of paternal ancestor and maternal ancestor, respectively. Both of them are the ancient protector of descendants; *tuŋ represents a father who is an outer shield and *duŋ represents a mother who is an inner shield. Some comparisons have been made as follows:
Indonesian; ‘atung’ –castaway, ‘betung’ –large bamboo, ‘datung’ –grandfather, a head, ‘gantung’ –to suspend with, ‘jantung’ –heart (something is hanged), ‘kantung’ and ‘kantong’ –sac, pouch to carry, ‘katung’ –afloat, ‘patung’ –statue and ‘tunggal’ –to be number one
Tai; ‘โตงเตง – to:ŋA1 te:ŋA1’ –to sway, suspended bars of a loom, ‘โต่ง – to:ŋB1’ –inordinate and ‘โต้ง – to:ŋC1’ –overgrown
Indonesian; ‘andung’ –grandmather, ‘bedung’ –napkin, ‘cadung’ –sprout, ‘gandung’ –stall, ‘gedung’ –large building, ‘hidung’ –nose, ‘kandung’ –pouch, sac to fill in, source, ‘kedung’ –pool, riverbed, trough, ‘ladung’ –curve, stack, ‘mendung’ –cloudy and ‘tudung’ –hood, cover
Tai; ‘ดั้ง – da:ŋC1’ –nose, forbear, ‘ด้ง – doŋC1’ –winnowing basket, ‘ดง – doŋA1’ –deep forest, ‘ดุ้ง - duŋC1’ –to bend, ‘ท้อง - thɔ:ŋC2’ –belly, ‘ถุง – thuŋA1’ –sac, bag and ‘ทุ่ง – thuŋB2’ –open field
There are some words that mix together, such as ‘โดง – do:ŋA1’ –mast, ‘โด่ง - do:ŋB1’ –prominent, ‘ดั้ง –da:ŋC1’ –shield, king post and ‘ตุง - tuŋA1’ –to bulge. The word to word comparisons are such as ‘betung’ –large bamboo vs ‘bedung’ –napkin, ‘gantung’ –to suspend with vs ‘gandung’ –stall and ‘kantong’ –sac, pouch to carry vs ‘kandung’ –pouch, sac to fill in, source.
The above explanations are all in brief of 32 cross-correlated monosyllabic roots of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai which summarized from my own study ‘คนพูดไท’ (The story of people who speak Tai-Kada). For me, the correlations of monosyllabic roots between Austronesian and Tai-Kadai are very much important, because they are strong evidences to support that Tai-Kadai are as very old as Austronesian as Laurent Sagart wrote in Tai-Kadai as a subgroup of Austronesian in 2005 that:
If Benedict is right that Tai-Kadai and AN are coordinate taxa under Austro-Tai, then we should find in Tai-Kadai some features which are more conservative than, and throw light on, reconstruction PAN.
The more conservative features than reconstruction of PAn by the recent mainstream works do not present in the form of sound change or in the surface etyma, they are, on the other side of the fence, from the subsurface etyma point of view. The view that used to be in concern of many scholars in the past 2-3 decades and almost been neglected after that. The view that has been identified as a deep root of proto-form of Austronesian, namely, ‘monosyllabic root’, of which is mainly preserved in many languages of Indonesia and Philippines with some in Formosan of Taiwan. The view that contains correspondence sets of sound-meaning correlation as Robert Blust wrote in The Austronesian languages in 2013 that:
Morphemes that contain a root thus typically consist of a formative plus –CVC root of generalized meaning.
These ‘root family’ are of general interest because they appear to violate a fundamental and widely accepted principle of binarity.
The view that is a prime root of basic vocabulary of Austronesian languages, including numerals, body part terms, nature terms, living society terms, basic animals and basic verbs. The view, in particular, that could be used for re-identifying a root of ‘bird’ and ‘fish’ as well as re-identifying a root of ‘numerals 1-10’. Therefore, it is the view that has integrated Austronesian and Tai-Kadai into a cross-correlated monosyllabic root. It is a cross-correlated monosyllabic root that could be used as a prototype to correct the PAn and to reconstruct Proto-Tai-Kadai and so on. It is, then, left with a little choice, but to accept that Austronesian and Tai-Kadai are members of Austro-Tai.
Furthermore, in my point of view, these monosyllabic roots might be existed long before the arrival of proto-disyllabic form and hence, they may not be a weed in the Austronesian garden, they are, indeed, a grandparent of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai seedling. The early speakers should use them in daily speaking with a form of either CV or CVC. Disyllables might be developed during Austro-Tai in the form of either formative plus a root, or a root plus a root, such as CV-CVC, CVC-CVC, CVC-CV and CV-CV. It is anticipated that before the time of separation, Austro-Tai should be very familiar with disyllabic form with a well identification of monosyllabic root, in particular, its form and the abstract meaning.
Prior to the development of disyllabic form, there was the strong indication of a pair-like pattern, dominated by male in *l - sound and female in *r - sound in many roots. Austro-Tai society might be primitive, but contained a stratum structure within a family and society as implied by *law –oldest or founder, *duŋ –maternal ancestor, *tuŋ –paternal ancestor, *lak -male, *sawa –owner/woman, *bawa –slave/man and *nak –child. The nature surrounded were well classified, apart from sun, such as *lan –moon, *nam/num –water, *lam/lum –inside, dark, *law –sea, etc. There was an early kind of plantation in the water rich area as reflected by *nam/num –water. Birds were well known for 3 kinds as *yam –tread, *nuk –protrude and *ruŋ –arc. Fish as *law –ancient place or source had not appeared yet until the disrupted period, but only in Tai-Kadai and Formosan. Basic counting of numerals 1-10 were developed before Austronesian and Tai-Kadai from a sense of a seed (a family) and a surrounded meat (a water circumstance). They should have a good knowledge in house construction, reflected by *lan –long stripe and *buŋ –connecting, even though it divided into 2 kinds of houses as *ruŋ, originated from a nest and *ram/rum, originated from a water and inside. The place that they lived should be within a water rich environment, such as river, flooding plain, delta plain and shoreline with island existed, reflected by *nam/num –water, plantation, *lam/lum –inside, water property and darkness and *law –source and mother sea. However, it does not mean that Austro-Tai were homogeneous, it is anticipated that they might have some dialects, of which shared the core vocabulary together; at least reflected by distinct words for house.
It is interpreted that the big wave of separation might take place during the peak of the last sea level rise. One of the main migration routes should be started from south where the homeland was entirely flooding to north where a large piece of landmass might be prominent. The route that had changed a big island to be a small fish. The route that was on the other side of the fence and transformed the immigrants to become a new settlement in the massive continent and on one small island nearby. The route that caused a lot of changes in the original languages and became Tai-Kadai, eventually. However, Tai-Kadai have not lost for all; they have well preserved the important part of ancient language ‘a monosyllabic root’. They have also preserved the ancient history very well in the form of world flooding lore, namely, ‘The Mother Gourd’ or ‘The Sky Lord’. Lastly, I do believe that many of Western Malayo-Polynesian might not leave the homeland any far and have done a very good job in preservation of ancient languages until a present day.
I do hope that this study may be fulfill some requirements or may somehow be a catalyst for an alternative look on the historical linguistics study of Austronesian and Tai-Kadai. The subsurface etyma study would, then, be back in concern and may gain more position than the past. I do hope that the comparison work would be no longer done on the surface to surface etyma, alone. The study would be more concern on the words group basis that contain a monosyllabic root with a special instrument to drill for a depth of such root. Thus, it is submitted as observations for further discussions, thank you. (Supat Charoensappuech, revised as of 12th July 2017)
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