Dorig language

Dorig (formerly called Wetamut) is an Oceanic language spoken on Gaua island in Vanuatu.

Native toVanuatu
Native speakers
300 (2012)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3wwo

The language’s 300 speakers live mostly in the village of Dorig (IPA: [ⁿdʊˈriɰ]), on the south coast of Gaua. Smaller speaker communities can be found in the villages of Qteon (east coast) and Qtevut (west coast).

Dorig's immediate neighbours are Koro and Mwerlap.[3]


Dorig has 8 phonemic vowels. These include 7 short monophthongs /i ɪ ɛ a ɔ ʊ u/ and one long vowel /aː/.[4]

Dorig vowels
  Front Back
Close i i u u
Near-close ɪ ē ʊ ō
Open-mid ɛ e ɔ o
Open a a ā

The phonotactic template for a syllable in Dorig is: /CCVC/ — e.g. /rk͡pʷa/ ‘woman’; /ŋ͡mʷsar/ ‘poor’; /wrɪt/ ‘octopus’. Remarkably, the consonant clusters of these /CCVC/ syllables are not constrained by the Sonority Sequencing Principle.[5]


The system of personal pronouns in Dorig contrasts clusivity, and distinguishes four numbers (singular, dual, trial, plural).[6]

Spatial reference is based on a system of geocentric (absolute) directionals, which is typical of Oceanic languages.[7]


  1. ^ François (2012): 88).
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Dorig". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ List of Banks islands languages.
  4. ^ François (2005:445)
  5. ^ François (2010:407)
  6. ^ François (2016).
  7. ^ François (2015).


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