Wiktionary:About Proto-Bantu

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Proto-Bantu is the ancestor of the Bantu languages.



Labial Coronal Palatal Velar
Nasal *m *n
Voiceless *p *t *c *k
Voiced *b *d *j *g

Prenasal consonants are denoted with m before labials, n before other consonants.


Proto-Bantu sources use a variety of notations for the vowels. They are shown here.

High/superhigh i u i̧/u̧ i u
Near-high ɪ ʊ i u e o
Mid e o e o ɛ ɔ
Open a

On Wiktionary, the ɪ/ʊ notation is used. It is important to check which notation a source uses, to avoid confusion.


The two tones of Proto-Bantu are denoted with an acute ´ for a high tone and grave ` for a low tone. The tone marks may be omitted if they are unknown. It is also permissible to redirect a toneless form to the toned form. For example, *mʊntʊ may redirect to *mʊ̀ntʊ̀.