A monograph of Central Tai dialects that offers extensive glossaries, texts, and translations with additional notes


Scholars, following Fang-kuei Li, generally divide the Tai languages into three branches, the Northern, the Central, and the Southwestern. This classification has been widely accepted and the three groups are roughly comparable in size and are distinguished by marked differences. William J. Gedney, however, believes that it is a mistake to infer a simultaneous three-way branching of the Tai linguistic family tree. Nevertheless, Gedney concurs that Li’s three-way grouping, while perhaps not an accurate reflectoin of the real genetic picture, remains useful for practical purposes and is therefore followed in this volume. The original data reproduced here were recorded by Gedney in notebooks along with the informant’s name and age, the geographical location of the dialect, and the dates of the interviews. In preparing the glossaries for publication, it was necessary to verify all the glosses and entries, and to alphabetize and format the material. The texts also appear in notebooks with the dates of recording noted. For these texts, sentences and paragraphs were determined, with interlinear glosses and free translations prepared, checked, and added.

William J. Gedney was Professor of Linguistics at the University of Michigan.Thomas John Hudak is Professor Emeritus of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University. He focuses on the linguistics and literature of Southeas