[An-lang] Song in Halia

Christoph Holz christoph.holz at cqumail.com
Wed Sep 29 03:24:19 UTC 2021

Dear all,

Do you know anyone who is familiar with Halia or related languages of
northern Bougainville? While doing fieldwork on Tiang in New Ireland, I
recorded a song that might be in Halia. The consultant did not speak Halia
himself and does not remember the meaning of the song (so his version might
be a little off from the actual language), but his parents were from the
Carteret Islands in Bougainville. This is a transcription of the song in

a ja (ɾ)u ʨi na

a ja (ɾ)u ta ma

se ja tu i a ləw ma

se to ɾɛ mə ɣə tu a twɨ

The first two lines probably mean ‘ouch, (our?) mother’ and ‘ouch, (our?)
father’. The song is part of a story about a woman made of paint, who dies
during a boat trip because she touches the sea and loses her colour (this
is how the sea became blue). I would be happy for any ideas about what the
third and fourth line could mean.

Best wishes,


*Christoph Holz* | PhD Candidate
School of Education and the Arts
CQUniversity Australia | Cairns, QLD 4870
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