Structure Of Abkhaz

Key information

Module code

Module overview

The aim is to offer those who have chosen to study the South Caucasian language Georgian an opportunity to acquaint themselves with the basic phonological and morphological structure of the North-West Caucasian language Abkhaz, with its large consonantal inventory and polysynthetic verb-forms, features that are shared by the other members of this small and endangered family.


None (though some knowledge of Georgian and/or basic linguistics would help).


Classroom grammar and exercise work. Two hours tuition per week.

Scope and syllabus

The phonological system is examined in detail along with a consideration of how the language has been (and might best be) represented orthographically. The rest of the module is devoted to a study of the verbal complex, listening exercises and testing for the recognition of grammatical features.

Method of assessment

One three-hour written exam in May-June (80% of the total mark); one practical examination to test aural comprehension (20%).

Suggested reading

  • As an introduction see the grammatical sketch in George Hewitt & Zaira Khiba, Abkhaz Newspaper Reader (with supplements), Dunwoody Press, 1998.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules