Categories
Interesting facts

Rotokas and English: Phonemic Contrasts

Rotokas, spoken in the mountains of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, boasts one of the world’s smallest phonemic inventories with just 11 phonemes. 

 

For comparison, English has 44 phonemes. A phoneme is generally regarded as “a set of speech sounds that are seen as equivalent to each other in a given language”. So even if the “k” sounds in the English word “kill” and “skill” are not exactly identical, we see them as equivalent within the language, and that’s why we call it a phoneme.



Latest Post

Nunchi: Korean Intuitive Insight
“Nunchi” (pronounced: noon-chee) is a Korean concept highly valued in Korean culture. It refers to…
Read More
101translations
The History of Mime
Mime, an ancient and globally practiced art form, traces its origins back to civilizations across…
Read More
101translations
From Octothorpe to Hashtag: The Evolution of a Symbol
The symbol "#" is commonly known as the hashtag today, but its original name is…
Read More
101translations