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Hancock, Ian Francis (1971) A study of the sources and development of the lexicon of Sierra Leone Krio. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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This thesis traces the origins and development of Sierra Leone Krio vocabulary, based upon the writer's own study and manuscript dictionary of that language, and on work with informants for most of the donor languages dealt with. Part I deals with European-African contacts from the 15th to the 19th century, and with creolization as a linguistic process developing from this contact. Various theories of creolization are discussed, and the hypothesis advanced that Krio did not pass through a pidgin stage as is generally maintained, but became nativized during the first generation of speakers, and pidginized later. This chapter is followed by a discussion of the sociolinguistic aspects of Krio, and a description of Krio phonology. Part II examines European material in Krio, the most important of which sources being English. The special role of the nautical varieties of the language in the 16th-19th centuries is emphasized. Regional and Archaic British forms which are still retained in Krio are also discussed. Parts III and IV deal with the African-derived items in Krio; from these chapters it is apparent that out of the complex multilingual situation of 19th century Freetown, comparatively few African languages have had any far-reaching impact upon Krio, and then usually only in specialized areas of the lexicon. Part Y is concerned with items derived from Arabic, all of which have entered Krio via one or more other West African languages. The majority of these items occur in a solely Islamic context. Part VI covers other aspects of Krio vocabulary: items coined within Krio itself, having no apparent cognates outside the language, compounded forms traceable to two (or more) different source languages, 'convergence' forms with two or more equally likely etymologies, English-derived items calqued on African models, items obsolete in modern Krio but recorded in 19th century literature, and items for which no satisfactory etymologies have yet been found. Part VII (appendices) comprises the acknowledgements and list of informants, and the bibliography, including several references for Sierra Leone Krio not consulted in the preparation of this thesis. The final section is an alphabetical word-index to all the items discussed, (ca. 3,000).

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 14:57

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