Luyia tone melodies

Kristopher J. Ebarb, Christopher R. Green, Michael R. Marlo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This paper offers an overview of verbal tone melodies within Luyia, a cluster of Bantu languages spoken in Kenya and Uganda. Luyia tone is diverse, possessing three types of verbal tonal systems: 'conservative', 'predictable', and 'reversive'. We illustrate the general tonal characteristics of each type of system with an exemplar language variety, describing the complex interactions of lexical and melodic tones.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-143
Number of pages23
JournalAfricana Linguistica
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Bantu
  • Luyia
  • Tense-aspect-mood
  • Tone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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