Who Killed Osman Xate?
The grammar of the village dialects of Ṭuroyo remains poorly described apart from that of Midən, and within the documentation there is a dearth of spontaneous conversations. Consequently, much about Ṭuroyo pragmatics and sociolinguistics in general also remains undescribed. We therefore present two short conversations between three residents of Kfarze in Tur Abdin, concerning a significant event in its recent history, together with a translation and a glossary. In addition to their value as oral histories of the Christian-Kurdish relationship in the region, they reveal significant details about the dialect of Kfarze, including 1) the contraction of triphthongs in ii-y verbs; 2) nouns consistently marked with l- when they express the agent of an ‘ergative’ preterite; and 3) the retention of ‘soft’ (unaspirated) ḳ in Kurmanji loan vocabulary. The presence of the last feature, and of frequent code-switching between Ṭuroyo and Kurmanji in the spontaneous speech of these villagers, attests to the bilingual situation in Kfarze.