This Proto-Austronesian entry contains reconstructed words and roots. As such, the term(s) in this entry are not directly attested, but are hypothesized to have existed based on comparative evidence.





  1. female, woman


Usage notesEdit

This word shows a wide range of concurrent forms in various Austronesian languages. One of the most productive forms is PAN *babahi ("woman, lady, girl"), with CV- reduplication of the first syllable, which appears to convey a diminutive sense. In Proto-Philippine, this reduplicated form can be augmented by verbal affixes like PPh *ma- or PPh *-en. Finally, in Proto-Malayo-Polynesian this word is reconstructed either as Proto-Malayo-Polynesian *bahi (woman, female of animals) or as Proto-Malayo-Polynesian *babinahi (woman, female), with no apparent differences in meaning. The latter form probably gave rise to Proto-Oceanic *papine (woman), which is the only one attested for the term woman in Proto-Oceanic and Proto-Polynesian branches of the Austronesian language family, although the residual non-reduplicated form *pe- is still present as a prefix.