Shona Dialects

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Ndau Dialect Status

This study is a scientific study of Ndau to establish, from a purely linguistic point of view, whether or not Ndau is a dialect of Shona.

For the purposes of advancing an objective and coherent argument it comparatively examines lexicological, phonological, syntactic and semantic aspects of Ndau and Mainstream Shona.

The study explores the historical connections between the Ndau and the Shona people.

It argues that the Ndau people were originally members of the ancient Rozvi Kingdom.

It also establishes cultural and linguistic contacts between the Ndau and the Nguni people.

This historic contact, as widely reported by linguists and historians tremendously contributed towards Ndau’s linguistic divergence from Mainstream Shona, hereafter referred to as MS.

This divergence is reflected through massive lexical, phonological and semantic differences between Ndau and MS.

It portrays massive lexicological differences between Ndau and MS.

Phonological aspects such as phonotactics, laterality, clicks, aspiration and ejection are also depicted as showing the influence of Nguni on Ndau.

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