Digital Dictionaries of South Asia A course in Baluchi
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Muhammad Abd-al-Rahman Barker and Aqil Khan Mengal
© by McGill University, 1969
Printed in The United States of America

Copyright is claimed until December 31, 1974. Thereafter all portions of this work covered by this copyright will be in the public domain.

The research on which this work is based was performed pursuant to a contract with the United States Office of Education, Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

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A. 101. Entries.

The following list recapitulates all of the lexical items introduced in the Vocabulary Sections of the lesson Units. Names of countries, regions, and cities are included, but personal names and less important place names are omitted. Substantives are entered in the nominative singular, and verbs are given in their infinitive forms. Paradigmatic forms (e.g. possessive and objective forms of the pronouns and demonstratives) are not listed; for these, the student must consult those Sections listed under the item's nominative form.

This list also includes a number of words which were not given to be learned but which were casually mentioned in one or another Section of the course. Such incidental items are treated here like other entries, except that they are not followed by a Roman numeral indicating the Unit in which they were introduced. The Section in which they appeared is mentioned, however; e.g.

/loli/ N lullaby. 29. 1000. [This word was mentioned in the introduction to Sec. 29. 1000, but the lack of a "XXIX" after its English meaning shows that it was not given to be learned.]

Two further types of words not included in this list are: (a) most of the names of the months, and (b) words for various units of measure. These are given in Secs. 19. 310 and 19. 206 respectively.

The lefthand column of the Vocabulary contains the Baluchi script spelling[s] of each entry. A more or less "phonemic" rendering is given on the right, and any alternate (e.g. traditional) spellings are added to the left. All possible spellings cannot be given, of course, particularly for those Arabic or Persian loanwords which may be written traditionally, partly traditionally and partly phonemically, or wholly phonemically according to Baluchi pronunciation; for these, only the phonemic spelling and the usual traditional orthography will be given. It is also impractical to list variations reflecting dialect differences, although some of the more important of those mentioned in this course will be separately entered and cross-referenced to a Rakhshani form.

Some further spelling matters include: (a) words beginning with /[h]/ are alphabetised under /h/, but spellings with and without /h/ are provided wherever both are common; (b) alternate spellings of words containing a medial /[h]/ are given; (c) words ending in the final "optional /[g]/" are written only with /g/, the "/g/-less" form being predictable; (d) elements occurring in compounds are usually written separately for clarity's sake, although it must be remembered that they will sometimes be found written together in actual Baluchi texts; (e) substantive suffixes are written according to the preferences expressed in Sec. 21. 200 ff., and alternate spellings are omitted.

The centre column provides the phonemic transcription of the entry, together with any alternate pronunciation. This is followed by an indication of the item's grammatical class membership; see Sec. A. 103.

The third column contains: (a) the English meaning[s] of the entry; (b) further information (e. g. dialect provenience) in square brackets; (c) one or more Roman numerals indicating the Unit in which the word first appears and also any other Unit in which further meanings of the item are given; and (d) a listing of those Sections containing further grammatical, semantic, or cultural information about the entry.

Complex verbal formations, special usages, and idioms are inserted as subentries under their main entry headings. These are given in phonemic script only and are followed by a Roman numeral indicating the Unit in which they appear. Such subentries are confined to those formations given to be learned, and thus these listings are necessarily incomplete: the lack of a listing under a main entry does not imply that no complex verbal formations, etc. are possible for the item.

A. 102. Alphabetical Order.

Entries are alphabetised according to their phonemic transcription rather than according to the traditional alphabetical order of the Baluchi (Arabic) script. This is done in order to conform to the alphabeticisation employed in the final Vocabulary Sections of the course. The order is thus:

a, ã, ə, b, c, d, D, e, ẽ, f, g, γ, h, i, i, j, k, l, m, n, o, õ, p, r, R, s, š, t, T, u, u, v, w, x, y, z, ž

A. 103. Abbreviations.

The following grammatical form classes ("parts of speech") are established for Baluchi.

A adjective
Adv adverb
Conj conjunction
D demonstrative
Indef indefinite pronoun
Interj interjection
Interr interrogative adverb
N noun
Neg negative adverb
P pronoun
PA predicate adjective
Part particle
Prep preposition
Ref P reflexive pronoun
V verb

Some of the above are subtypes of even larger major classes: e.g. adjectives, some kinds of adverbs, demonstratives, the indefinite pronoun, some interrogatives, nouns, pronouns, predicate adjectives, and the reflexive pronoun can all be grouped together under the heading "substantives."

Roman numerals are employed after the symbol "V" to indicate membership in the various classes of the present and past verbal systems. This symbolisation was introduced in Sec. 13. 900 but may be recapitulated here. The first numeral after the "V" stands for the item's present system class (see Unit VII), and the second for its past stem formation (see Unit XIII). Nonpredictable past stems are given in phonemic brackets. Thus, for example, in /lwDDəg/ V-I-I "to sway, nod, "the first "I" indicates that this verb belongs to "Class I" of the present system (Sec. 7. 101), and the second "I" shows that it is a member of "Class I" of the past system (Sec. 13. 301). This verb thus has /lwDDit/ as its 3rd sg. present form and /lwDDyt/ as its past stem (and, coincidentally, its 3rd sg. past form also.) Similarly, /dəyəg/ V-V-/dat/ "to give" employs the Roman numeral "V" to indicate that the 3rd sg. present form is /dənt/ (Sec. 7. 601), but the past stem is not predictable and must be given: /dat/.

Where an item belongs to more than one grammatical class an attempt has been made to list its more common usage first. Thus, for example, /rəng/ N, A "colour, dye; coloured, dyed" indicates that this entry is usually employed as a noun but may also occur with the "attributive" suffix /en/-/ẽ/ as an adjective. Such listings in order of "usual occurrence" are necessarily impressionistic.

A few further abbreviations and conventions may be noted. These exclude commonly understood abbreviations (e.g. "q.v.").

adj. adjective
lit. literally
pl. plural
Sec. Section (of the course)
Secs. Sections (of the course)
sg. singular
sp. spelling
/ ... / / ... / is used to set off material in phonemic transcription in notes, complex verbal formations and other subentries, etc; for reasons of space, phonemic forms of main entry words are not enclosed by this device.
[...] square brackets enclose (a) an alternate pronunciation of an entry; (b) optional material in a formation; (c) a note given after an English gloss; (d) words missing in the English gloss which are implied by the Baluchi form

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