|(6,800 cited 1994)|
Kove is one of the Austronesian languages of New Britain which is spoken by the people of Papua New Guinea. The language is found in 18 villages with their populations totaling 9,000 people; however, most of the people are unfamiliar with the language. Instead of using the Kove language, many of them are using Tok Pisin as their daily language.
Although in the past the Kove people had contact with foreign languages as a result of trading, the location where they lived was isolated enough that they maintained Kove as their daily language. This is caused by interacting with more people than they used to because of the increase in the transportation. However, the younger generation, people who are below fifty, started to use Tok Pisin as their daily language. In addition, the education language that are used in the schools is not Kove, except one school just recently changed to Kove, but this does not mean that the student will use Kove outside of the class. Also, some Kove people are married to non-Kove speaker and they use other language in their daily life rather than Kove. As a result, their child will learn the other language as their first language.
There are three dialects where Kove is spoken. These three dialects are called East Kove, Central Kove, and West Kove. The dialect that are used by the Central Kove is to be considered as the standard Kove. This is because the central of the Kove area is the place where the ancestor have first arrived. Additionally, it is the dialect that is closest to the original Kove language. In fact, the other two dialects, East Kove and West Kove, has been changed slightly due to the languages around them.
The Kove independent pronouns are given in the following table.
|1 incl||1 excl||2||3|
The pronominal system for Kove is somewhat different from the other Oceanic languages. The similarities that Kove and other oceanic languages have been using first person, second person, and third person. They also separate the inclusive and the exclusive. Also, "gender is not encoded" stated by Hiroko. However, unlike the other language of the Oceanic, Kove only uses singular and plural for numbers. The pronominal system for Kove is separated into four functions. These four functions are independent, subject marker, object, and possessive.
The order of the grammar pattern that is used in Kove is SV and AYO, "where S represents an intransitive subject, A a transitive subject, V a verb, and O a direct object", stated by Hiroko.
Kove consonant may be changed anytime due to the interaction with the language of Tok Pisin and English. You can also combine all the consonants with the vowels that they have.
|Stops||p b||t d||k g|
In Kove there are five vowels. The lips will round to produce the vowels /u/ and /o/. For vowels /i/, /e/, and /a/ the lips will not be rounded. Vowels can be at the beginning of the word or at the end of the word. Also, the same two vowels cannot be used together. For example, using the vowels /ii/ together is not allowed; however, there is one word that is uses the same two vowels which is /ee/ "yes." This example is the only case where two of the same vowels can appear next to each other.
Furthermore, if the vowels are followed by a velar nasal ng, then it will become a negative tense, except the vowel a.
Some of the elementary schools in Kove just recently used an orthography "that was established by elementary school teachers who were neither native speakers of Kove nor trained in linguistics" as stated by Hiroko. However, these teachers are unfamiliar with the system.
There are two different types of stress in Kove, one is primary and the other is secondary. "Primary stress always falls on the penultimate syllable" and " secondary stress falls on every second syllable to the left of the syllable receiving primary stress," claimed Hiroko.
Just like the other language in Oceanic, Kove has many word that are reduplicated. There are three type of reduplication in Kove. The first one which is full reduplication. The examples for this type of duplication is tama "father" is reduplicated to tamatama "father" in Kove. Also, ani "eat" reduplicated to aniani "be eating". The second type of reduplication is leftward. For examples, pau "new" is reduplicated to papau "new" and tari "younger parallel sibling and cousin" reduplicated to tatari "younger parallel siblings and cousins". The third type of reduplication is rightward but, this type of reduplication is rarely used in Kove.
The language Kove have also borrow words from other languages, for example, the language of Austronesian like Anem, Papuan. This is because when they are trading with other people, they will apparently saw new things. In this case, they will borrow the other language word and combine with their own language to named it. Some examples that the language of Kove have borrowed the words from other languages are "tavila "large wooden bowl for pounding taro", amouru "rain tree", ahila "small-leafed rattan originating in the bush", rodya "short and light yellow tapioca", said Hiroko. And as the time passes, these words will be known as Kove language. This type of situation is getting more commonly in today's live. Due to the increasing of interaction with the outside world and easier of transportation, Kove people will eventually know more things. This means that they have to borrow the word from other language to name it. In fact, due to the language of Tok Pisin that the Kove people has used as their daily language, many new things are named using Tok Pisin. For examples, car, airplane, paper, money, and many more are named using the Tok Pisin language instead of Kove language.
The language of Kove has three word classes: open lexical classes, closed lexical classes, and grammatical classes. Lexical class is also known as the part of speech and "grammatical words or morphemes are elements shared in the grammatical structure of clauses," claimed Hiroko. Which includes the nouns and the verbs. On the other hand, closed lexical classes includes adjectives, adverbs, and cardinal numerals. The grammatical classes includes adpositions, articles, causative marker, serialed verb unifier, conjunctions, demonstratives, intransitive marker, locative demonstratives, nominalizers, particles, possessive markers, pronouns, reciprocal marker, tense, aspect, mood markers, and all other element that are not included in the other two classes.