Proto-Chukotko-Kamchatkan language

Proto-Chukotko-Kamchatkan language

Proto-Chukotko-Kamchatkan is the hypothetical common ancestor of the Chukotko-Kamchatkan languages.

A reconstructed version of the language is presented by Michael Fortescue in his Comparative Dictionary of Chukotko-Kamchatkan (2005).


According to Fortescue, Proto-Chukotko-Kamchatkan had the following phonemes, expressed in IPA symbols.


labial alveolar palatal velar uvular
p t c k q
v ð ɣ ʀ
m n ŋ
w j


i u
e ə o
æ a


The stop series consists of /p t c k q/. Note that Proto-Chukotko-Kamchatkan had only voiceless stops, no voiced stops.

/c/ is a voiceless palatal stop (not the affricate č). /q/ is a voiceless uvular stop.

There are no voiced stops (such as /b d g/). However, there is a series of voiced fricatives, /v ð ɣ ʀ/.

/v/ is a voiced labiodental fricative (like v in English). /ɣ/ is a voiced velar fricative (like the g in German sagen in some dialects, modern Greek gamma, Persian qāf, etc.).

/ʀ/ is a voiced uvular fricative (like r in French). (This is the only sign which Fortescue uses in a different way than the standard IPA does. The usual IPA symbol would be ʁ.)

The entire /t ð n l r/ series is alveolar - i.e. /t ð n/ are not dentals.

There are three nasal phonemes, labial /m/, alveolar /n/, and velar /ŋ/ (like ng in English sing).

There are two semivowels, /w/ and /j/ (= English w and y).

There are seven vowels, the high vowels /i/ and /u/, the mid vowels /e ə o/, and the low vowels /æ a/.

See also


Fortescue, Michael. 2005. Comparative Chukotko-Kamchatkan Dictionary. Trends in Linguistics 23. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

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