Sun 08 August 2021

Welcome to Week 2 of my exploration of the languages of South Asia! Last week I looked at Khasi, and this week I stay in Meghalaya but move a bit east to talk about Pnar. Pnar is closely related to Khasi, and in Grierson's survey was considered to be a dialect of Khasi, though the two are now accepted to be quite a bit more distinct. Thus, like Khasi, Pnar is an Austro-Asiatic language, spoken primarily in the East and West Jaintia Hills districts, though many Pnar speakers would also live in the state capital, Shillong.

Pnar Language Distribution

Pnar is classified within the Mon-Khmer group of the Austro-Asiatic language family, a group which also includes Vietnamese and Khmer. Geographically, Pnar is close to the Munda languages of Central and East India, also within the Austro-Asiatic family, though genetically the Munda group is quite distinct from the Mon-Khmer languages.

A number of the features...