Symbolic indexing in Oromo


  • Mi’eesa Yaachis
  • Robbin Clamons


Oromo, indexing, referring expressions, Giji, narrative discourse


This paper identifies a general phonic pattern of indexing on referential, spatiotemporal, and logical structures in Oromo. Final –n(V) marking across these different grammatical forms correlates with assumed accessibility of referents and of other information in discourse across a range of syntactic and semantic elements. The primary data for this study are from a spontaneous Guji narrative. Previous research on the form of referring expressions and the cognitive status of their referents in other Oromo dialects is extended through the consideration of the nominal constructions in this narrative. Furthermore, by the examination of other constructions, this –n(V) indexical is identified as a general pragmeme that functions to mark expressions for accessible referents and information on a range of forms across a discourse in Oromo.