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Abstract

Bantu languages are fairly uniform in terms of broad typological parameters. However, they have been noted to display a high degree of more fine-grained morphosyntactic micro-variation. In this paper we develop a systematic approach to the study of morphosyntactic variation in Bantu by developing nineteen parameters which serve as the basis for cross-linguistic comparison and which we use for comparing ten southeastern Bantu languages. We address conceptual issues involved in studying morphosyntax along parametric lines and show how the data we have can be used for the quantitative study of language comparison. Although the work reported is a case study in need of expansion, we will show that it nevertheless produces relevant results.