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Introduction to the History of Gùngáwá People and Language.

Gùngáwá is an adopted name for the Bàrèshe people by their Hausa neighbors which means Island dwellers because of their nearest to rivers and lakes.


The people call themselves Bàrèshe, Tsureja or Yáúráwa but officially called Gùngáwá. The names of the language are Gùngáwá, Gùngácí.

The Gùngáwá people are mostly found in Northern part of Kebbi State, and around Islands in extreme Sokoto State few of them were also in Niger State especially Kontangora area and Borgu Local Government Area and a recent funding in Kaiama Local Government Area of Kwara State.



Title page          i

Certification          ii

Dedication          iii

Acknowledgement          iv

Table of Contents         vi-viii




1.1 Introduction         1

1.2 General Background        1

1.3 Historical Background       1

1.4 Sociocultural profile of the Gunganwa People    4

1.5 Genetic Classification of Gunganci Language    9

1.6 Scope and Organistions of Study      11

1.7 Theoretical Framework       11

1.8 Data Collection and Data Analysis      12

1.9 Brief Review of the Choosen Framework     13




2.1 Introduction          14

2.2. Aspects of Gunganci Phonology      14

2.2.1. Sound Inventory in Gunganci Language     14

2.2.2. Consonant Sounds        15

2.2.3. Gunganci Consonant Chart       15

2.2.4. Vowel Sounds         23

2.2.5. Gunganci Vowel Chart       24

2.2.6. Gunbganci Nasal Vowels       25

2.3 Tone Inventory of Gunganci Language      29

2.4. Syllable Structure of Gunganci Lanaguage     30

2.5. Basic Morphological Concepts       30

2.5.1 Morpheme         31

2.5.2 Types of Morphem        32

2.5.3. Tree Morpheme        32

2.5.4. Lexical Morpheme        33

2.5.5. Functional Morpheme        34 Conjunction         34 Preposition         34 Pronouns         34

2.5.6 Bound Morpheme        35

2.5.7. Derivational Morpheme       35

2.5.8. Inflectional Morpheme       36 Noun          36 Adjective         36 Base Forms         37 Comparative Forms        37 Superlative Forms        37

2.6. Structural Position of Morpheme      37

2.7 Allomorphs         38

2.8. Language Typology        39

2.8.1. Isolating Language        39

2.8.2. Agglutinating Language       39

2.8.3. Fusional or Inflecting Language      40

2.9. Sentencial Classification of Morphemes in Gunganci Language  40




3.1 Introduction         42

3.2 Lexical Category        42

3.2.1. Noun          42

3.2.2. Bisyllabic Nouns        43

3.2.3 Trisyllabic         43

3.2.4. Polysyllabic Nouns        43

3.2.4. Nouns in Gunganci Language       43

3.2.5 Animate Nouns        43

3.2.6. Inanimate Nouns        44

3.2.7. Proper Nouns         44

3.2.8. Common Nouns        44

3.3.9. Abstract Noun         45

3.2.10  Countable Noun        45

3.2.11 Uncountable Nouns        45

3.2.12 Function of Nouns in Gunganci Language     46

3.2.13. Nouns as a Subject        46

3.2.14. Noun as an Object.        46

3.3 Pronouns         47

3.4. Adjective         48

3.4.1. Function of Adjective in Gunganci Language    48

3.5. Preposition         48

3.5.1. Function of Adjective in Gunganci Lanaguage    49

3.6. Verb          49

3.6.1. Transitive Verb        49

3.6.2 Intransitive Verb        50

3.7. Adverb          51

3.8 Conjunction         51

3.9. Interjection         52




4.1 Introduction          53

4.2 Morphological Processes       53

4.3. Lexical Borrowing        53

4.4. Compounding         55

4.5. Reduplication         55

4.6. Refashioning         56

4.7. Clipping         57

4.8. Affixation         57




5.1 Introduction         58

5.2. Summary          58

5.3. Conclusion         59

References          60


Historical Background

The tribe Gùngáwá or Bàrèshe can be found in the Northern part of Nigeria in Southern Kebbi State (Yàúrí Local Government) few of them are also in Borgu Local Government Area and North of Borgu in Niger State.

The Gùngáwá are mostly concentrated in Kebbi State in Yàúrí Local Government. The Gùngáwá people are the original inhabitants of Yàúrí according to Muazu Bagudu a native of the town.

A source had that the Gùngáwá were decendents of  17th century warrior called Kisira or Kachin who allied himself with the Hausa Soldiers to gain territory in the extreme North who eventually settled with his co-fighters in present Yàúrí town.

Another source told us of their trace to a songay warrior who came from Mali to seek territorial control and their eventual settlement (with his supporters) in Yàúrí and parts of Lopa and Laru (Gùngáwá neighboring areas).

According to Apollos Aagamalafiya, a native of Gùngáwá from Rèkúbl area in Yàúrí belief that the Gùngáwá people came from Kabuwa that they are hunters from Katsina State.

He (Apollos) explained further that some say they are from Shagana, Kambari, Kabbawa or Sarkawa. These are mixed up tribes that constitute the Yàúrí emirate.

As regard this histories, the actual place of origin is not clear, and it remain debatable among Gùngáwá people. Although, the Gùnganci language is closely related with that of the Lopa and Laru people in term of lexical items and Noun Affixes. No matter how related these people might be with the Gùngáwá tribe; however, they (Gùngáwá) still remain divergent in historical root.


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