Areal features in Gongduk, Bjokapakha and Black Mountain Mönpa phonology
This paper argues that certain phonological similarities between the three Trans-Himalayan languages Gongduk, Bjokapakha (Tshangla) and Black Mountain Mönpa are areal features and discusses the historical and ethnolinguistic implications of this assumption. The similarities between Gongduk and Bjokapakha indicate a situation of areal convergence of recent data. This contact scenario explains certain aberrancies of Bjokapakha with regard to other Tshangla varieties. The attestation of some of the phonological features in Black Mountain Mönpa is analysed as the result of early contact between Gongduk and Black Mountain Mönpa, i.e. dating back to the time before the arrival of the East Bodish peoples in Central Bhutan.