View table of contents for this book View table of contents for LinguaLinksLibrary Go to LinguaLinks home page

What is an inalienable noun?



An inalienable noun is a noun that

  • refers to something viewed as permanently and necessarily possessed, and
  • is thus obligatorily expressed as possessed.

It may require a distinguishing possessive form.

Example (Awa, Papua New Guinea)
  • In Awa, the body part and kinship terms are expressed as inalienable nouns.


    McKaughan and Loving 1973

  • Generic
      An inalienable noun is a kind of

    Crystal 1980 181


    McKaughan and Loving 1973 31

    Context for this page:

    Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 5.0 published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 2003. [Ordering information.]

    Page content last modified: 5 January 2004

    © 2004 SIL International